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 Post subject: Pre Game Negotiations
PostPosted: Sat Apr 10, 2010 6:02 am 
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Joined: Tue Jan 15, 2008 6:44 pm
Posts: 464
Location: Playing In the Sandbox
Before you start a game you should always discuss the details of what you expect to see from the
game you are about to set up and play. This is important so that all the players involved will have
and enjoyable battle and will know what to expect.

In another post I told you a bit about each of the games preference settings and how they can effect
the way the game players. These settings are sometimes altered in the pre game negotiations and
agreed on by the players. There are often other conditions that are set at this time and it can be
important to look at them and decided if they are acceptable. Lets look at some of the more common
ones that players may request.

The opinions here are mine and if you disagree with me that is fine you're even welcome to suggest
other reasons why you offer these conditions and why others might want to do so too. I am not
suggesting you make your games based on my choices only attempting to offer you my opinion
of these settings. Take them as you will or discard them if you want. How you play is up to you
and your opponent.

Lets start with some of the easy ones that are often used.

NO Paratroops or Glider landings.
This one is common and I tend to agree with it. It would make for a much better game if you
talked about using these sort of forces and making some allowances for the player who is going
to use them. Transport aircraft can become expensive when you have to buy larger numbers of
them. Gliders are destroyed when they land in many cases and the points for them are added to
the other players score. Like transport aircraft they too can become expensive if you need to buy
larger numbers of them. These points spent take away from the points you can spend on combat
units. This is why I think they should be provided at no cost to players who are going to make a
paratroop or glider landing as part of the battles requirements.

However I think the real reason it is stated in most pre game negotiations is due to players using
these methods to insert a small force into the enemy rear areas in an attempt to take out the A0
HQ or artillery parks so it is just added in as a means of preventing this. Cost wise if you want
to toss away points on non combat units to insert a small group of men go for it. That means less
units in the front lines. If your defending your HQ and artillery parks anyway this sort of thing
is often a waste of points by the player choosing to do it.

No Infiltrators allowed
Similar to the no paratroop/glider reasoning players don't want the enemy roaming around in the
rear area and want to only focus on the front lines. While I think this takes out a part of the game
where players are asked to secure there area of operations and keep them safe while conducting
combat operations elsewhere some players don't want to be bothered by this. I look at it from
the point of view that says if you want to spend the points to buy them go for it. I tend to keep
AA guns and a reserve force in my rear area anyway so when you show up If I find them I will
then kill them and take the points for doing so. Bring them on.

The other reason some players don't like them is they can act as spotters and be used to spot for
artillery and air strikes which would then be more accurate. Again I say bring it on. If you want
to send planes expect AA fire on them. If you want to use your artillery on units your not going to
destroy completely go for it. While your guns are doing that work I will be attacking your front lines
looking to destroy your main forces. To avoid problems you may want to allow these sort of units
to be used but limit the amount of them that can be purchased.

No Deployment Phase Artillery
This one often allows smoke use or sets a turn or two limit before artillery can be used at all. I
feel this is done because players who ask for this sort of thing are going to crowd the start lines
or set up in some obvious areas and don't want to have the enemy shooting at them while they
are all stacked up. For me this is just an excuse for allowing players to get a fast jump at rushing
to the victory hexes which may be easily reachable if they hurry. It also tends to allow for bad
habits of setting up units in places which are obvious choices and they don't want to do something
else that requires them to actually work at looking for other starting locations.

I see this again from the stand point that says if you want to shoot at something you can't see and
use up your guns doing it go for it. Your either going to use up limited ammo of off board guns or
show me your artillery parks before play starts. If you want to do that fine by me. I would be
doing you a favor by requesting this option. Don't expect to see me offer it to you unless it is a
benefit to me in some way.

No Aircraft or No Aircraft before turn x
This one really makes no sense if No Aircraft are allowed in a larger battle. For small actions I can
understand it. I can also somewhat agree with the delayed use of them. I can't see them being
all that useful even if they do allow for a good look at where your at. Perhaps it is my own play
style that says that I paid a fair amount of points for my aircraft and want good targets for them.
I see the reconnaissance they provide as a bonus not a reason for buying them. I also tend to buy
enough decent AA units to make enemy use of aircraft a risky option.

Aircraft are similar to artillery and they benefit from having a spotter call them in. While you can
gain some good results from letting then hunt on there own by plotting off of gold spots if you want
to choose a target for them it should be spotted not left to chance.

I am going to say that most players who don't want to allow aircraft do so to avoid having to spend
points on AA guns to use against aircraft (they want to use them on ground targets) and to eliminate
the recon info they can provided the enemy. I presume they do this fearing further air attacks or
artillery being plotted. My stance on this one. Bring them on. I can shoot them down and the
recon you get is not good enough to warrant the use of un-spotted artillery fire that is going to be
50% less effective then what you might get with it if you used it on my front line units. At best
you might kill a gun or get a lucky kill but all that suppression is wasted. I will just rally and move
them to a new location requiring you to find them again.

Limiting smoke use in some way
I find most of these rules to be outright silly. There is only one use of smoke that is really considered
to be gamey play and that is to pop smoke after firing a unit to block los to it. All of the other reasons players complain about smoke use tend to stem from playing with low visibility settings
that allow smoke to act as a force field. It is a much better solution to just raise the visibility settings
over 24 to eliminate this effect.

Organic units do not count towards a preset limit
This one can be a real bad idea to agree to it. Some nations have pre-built formations that offer a
mix of armor or included medium mortars. Rarely will both sides be able to gain an advantage from
this rule and it is often offered in an attempt by one player to get something for free that the other
player can not also benefit from. Most of these offers center on mortars and not armor but even
then some nations can add medium mortars to a infantry platoon or company formation while most
others can not. I would suggest to you to accept this sort of rule only if talking about light mortars
and even then only if both sides are going to have them in equal numbers based on platoons and
not company level allotments. Some nations have them attached to platoons others do not.
My point here is don't give the other player something for free. It would be better to make all sides
pay for everything then it would be to allow one side to be short changed on something because of
this sort of rule. Even light mortars are effective weapons don't give more artillery to the enemy
up for free because of this sort of rule.

AA guns and AT guns don't apply to artillery limits
This one I have no problem with. It makes sense only to limit the amount of Indirect fire artillery.
limiting AA guns or At guns is not something you want to allow.

Half tracks don't count or do count against armor limits
This one is often one that should not be used in general. If you don't like half tracks because you
always seem to be on the receiving end of a wild charge of them into your lines you need to learn
how to kill them and make this sort of attack suicide to try against you. If you want to do this
sort of thing it would be better to talk about it before just agreeing to it. Some battles they should
be limited in and in others they may be the expected sort of transport to purchase. (desert warfare)
If you do use this sort of rule you may need to specify if prime movers or even Bren or Lloyd carriers
are half tracks. It can be complicated if you choose to use this sort of rule.

Along similar lines rules limiting the use of Motorcycles and Cavalry units may come up. Again they
should be discussed. Allowing some limits on use is often better then completely removing them.

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