Author Topic: C# Ground Forces Composition  (Read 2315 times)

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Offline Bremen

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Re: C# Ground Forces Composition
« Reply #15 on: September 20, 2018, 06:44:10 PM »
Also note that I consider this a good thing. Having high space, low cost units be at a moderate advantage gives a bonus to defenders to counteract having your forces split across multiple planets, and a reason to have a variety of units instead of just using the same formations for both attack and defense.
 

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Re: C# Ground Forces Composition
« Reply #16 on: September 20, 2018, 06:49:47 PM »
My whole point was that this only applies when transport size doesn't matter. And like Jorgen, you cherry picked an example where the power armor side was perfectly designed to kill unarmored infantry but the unarmored infantry had no anti-power armor weapons, and it still came down to a tie, not a slight advantage.

No not really.

You see, at that point you need to consider what the opposition is armed with. That could be a Crew Served Anti Personnel component (Size 12, AP10, Damage 10, Shots 6), a Heavy Crew Served Anti Personnel component (Size 20, AP 20, Damage 20, Shots 6) a Light Anti Vehicle component (Size, 16, AP20, Damage 60, Shots 1). But that doesn't mean the situation improves for the unarmoured infantry.

Crew Served AP? Mutually assured destruction, advantage presumably to the unarmoured infantry. But only if the full force of the armoured infantry takes the field instead of hanging back on the Support line while 1/6th of the armoured infantry goes in, gets annihilated and destroys the unarmoured infantry in return.

Heavy Crew Served Anti Personnel? Same problem, except that the armoured infantry has an 8 size point per unit advantage because they're not going to lug anything heavier in than needed, it's just sheer overkill.

Light Anti Vehicle component? 4 size point and 5 shot advantage to the armoured infantry. This one is perhaps even less favourable to the unarmoured infantry because at least the Crew Served Anti Personnel unit could expect to kill 1.5 armoured infantry per round instead of 1 per round due to the shot limitation.


In practically every case, armoured infantry is likely to have the advantage over unarmoured. And that advantage is the smallest with Personnel Weapon components.
 

Offline Bremen

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Re: C# Ground Forces Composition
« Reply #17 on: September 20, 2018, 07:03:16 PM »
No not really.

You see, at that point you need to consider what the opposition is armed with. That could be a Crew Served Anti Personnel component (Size 12, AP10, Damage 10, Shots 6), a Heavy Crew Served Anti Personnel component (Size 20, AP 20, Damage 20, Shots 6) a Light Anti Vehicle component (Size, 16, AP20, Damage 60, Shots 1). But that doesn't mean the situation improves for the unarmoured infantry.

Crew Served AP? Mutually assured destruction, advantage presumably to the unarmoured infantry. But only if the full force of the armoured infantry takes the field instead of hanging back on the Support line while 1/6th of the armoured infantry goes in, gets annihilated and destroys the unarmoured infantry in return.

Heavy Crew Served Anti Personnel? Same problem, except that the armoured infantry has an 8 size point per unit advantage because they're not going to lug anything heavier in than needed, it's just sheer overkill.

Light Anti Vehicle component? 4 size point and 5 shot advantage to the armoured infantry. This one is perhaps even less favourable to the unarmoured infantry because at least the Crew Served Anti Personnel unit could expect to kill 1.5 armoured infantry per round instead of 1 per round due to the shot limitation.


In practically every case, armoured infantry is likely to have the advantage over unarmoured. And that advantage is the smallest with Personnel Weapon components.

First off, you're still assuming the power armor infantry is only using personal weapons. My point was realistically *both* sides would be using a mix, since it isn't realistically possible to know what you're facing ahead of time.

Though if you want, we can model that. The ideal weapon against power armor is heavy crew served anti-personnel, so let's assume the unarmored infantry were all using that. The ideal weapon against unarmored infantry is crew served anti-personnel.

The unarmored HCAP unit is size 20, cost 20. The power armored CAP is size 12, cost 24. Even cost would therefor be 24 unarmored units to 20 power armored units:

The 24 unarmored units fire 144 shots, each capable of killing a power armor infantry unit in 1 hit. The Power armor infantry fire 120 shots, each capable of killing an unarmored unit in one hit. Clearly the unarmored units have the advantage here - they're both inflicting more damage and have more units to absorb shots. Even after modifiers for accuracy it would be an extremely short fight, but the unarmored infantry would be overwhelmingly likely to hold the battlefield.

You could argue that this is an unlikely situation, and be correct. My point is that the original situation is unlikely too - neither side is going to consist purely of personal weapons. But because personal weapons (and light bombardment) are good against unarmored infantry but not power armor infantry, using exclusively those to make your point was biasing the numbers in favor of power armor, and even then it more or less just worked out as a tie. If both units have some anti-vehicle weapons, well, those will kill both a single unarmored infantry and a single power armor infantry in one hit, so that swings the advantage to the more numerous unarmored infantry. Same for literally any weapon with a base AP value above 10.

Quote
Crew Served AP? Mutually assured destruction, advantage presumably to the unarmoured infantry. But only if the full force of the armoured infantry takes the field instead of hanging back on the Support line while 1/6th of the armoured infantry goes in, gets annihilated and destroys the unarmoured infantry in return.

I don't know where you're getting this. If both sides were using crew served anti-personnel and one side (either) only fielded half their force, they'd take much higher losses in the part they did field. It's not like either side would completely annihilate the other in one combat round.
« Last Edit: September 20, 2018, 07:11:50 PM by Bremen »
 

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Re: C# Ground Forces Composition
« Reply #18 on: September 20, 2018, 07:16:46 PM »
First, you misread my comment.

I was presuming both sides were armed with the same weapons unless they're clearly overkill.

Second, I was ignoring fortification and other defense modifiers, and presuming any shot would hit. Which is a fair enough assumption when both sides have the same modifiers. It would tend statistically towards this result after all.

Third, combat rounds occur at the same time for all players. Otherwise the first to go has the advantage.

Fourth, your cost equal example is the only example that favours the unarmoured infantry. Equal Size with the same weapons? Armoured infantry. Equal numbers? Armoured infantry or draw.
 

Offline Bremen

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Re: C# Ground Forces Composition
« Reply #19 on: September 20, 2018, 07:26:48 PM »
First, you misread my comment.

I was presuming both sides were armed with the same weapons unless they're clearly overkill.

Second, I was ignoring fortification and other defense modifiers, and presuming any shot would hit. Which is a fair enough assumption when both sides have the same modifiers. It would tend statistically towards this result after all.

Third, combat rounds occur at the same time for all players. Otherwise the first to go has the advantage.

Fourth, your cost equal example is the only example that favours the unarmoured infantry. Equal Size with the same weapons? Armoured infantry. Equal numbers? Armoured infantry or draw.

The whole point of the debate is "if we go by cost instead of size". Yes, heavy armor gives a bonus for no increase in size, so of course any simulation of equal size the heavy armor is going to win or at worst tie. That goes unsaid.

Second, you're wrong that the same weapons favors armored infantry. Your example is "same weapons tie" but only if you define the "same weapons" as exclusively weapons that are good against unarmored infantry but not armored infantry.

Same cost, same weapons, and those weapons are personal or crew served anti-personnel (Anything with base AP of 10 or less, basically)? A tie.
Same cost, same weapons, and those weapons are heavy crew served anti-personnel? Unarmored infantry will destroy the armored infantry, because the armor doesn't matter against the weapon and there are twice as many.
Same cost, same weapons, and those weapons are anti-vehicle? Anti-vehicle isn't great against infantry, but both sides are using them and they're as good against the armored infantry as unarmored. Unarmored infantry will again mop the floor with the armored, because the armor doesn't matter and there are twice as many.
Same cost, same weapons, and both sides are using the same mix of weapons? Unarmored infantry will also win, because they literally tied when both sides used the ideal weapons against unarmored infantry and any mix has to be worse against them and will likely be better against the armored infantry.
« Last Edit: September 20, 2018, 07:28:55 PM by Bremen »
 

Offline Person012345

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Re: C# Ground Forces Composition
« Reply #20 on: September 20, 2018, 10:21:01 PM »
From all this speculation ground combat is sounding reasonably well balanced. What I'm getting is that quantity will have a slight advantage over quality in many situations (but not all - and it might mop the floor with it in situations where it absolutely makes sense that it would), but that logistics for them will be significantly harder (this includes supplying ammunition for them). If this is how it turns out, that actually sounds ideal. I'm sure balance won't be 100% on the first try but then aurora has never been about perfect balance and it'll be refined as everyone actually gets to play it I'm sure.
« Last Edit: September 20, 2018, 10:23:20 PM by Person012345 »
 

Offline Whitecold

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Re: C# Ground Forces Composition
« Reply #21 on: September 21, 2018, 12:40:14 AM »
Another note, currently I don't see any reason to use anything but either infantry or static platforms for bombardment weapons. Vehicles seem to only be required on the frontlines, and your support should never end up there, and in case of a breakthrough, they get all the nice fortification modifiers on a static platform for defense.
For LB infantry has the smallest overhead, MB on light vehicle and on static are the same size, and HB needs a heavy vehicle base, which needs 18t per slot compared to 12 for static.
 

Offline Bremen

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Re: C# Ground Forces Composition
« Reply #22 on: September 21, 2018, 01:22:00 AM »
Another note, currently I don't see any reason to use anything but either infantry or static platforms for bombardment weapons. Vehicles seem to only be required on the frontlines, and your support should never end up there, and in case of a breakthrough, they get all the nice fortification modifiers on a static platform for defense.
For LB infantry has the smallest overhead, MB on light vehicle and on static are the same size, and HB needs a heavy vehicle base, which needs 18t per slot compared to 12 for static.

Hum... looking at it, medium vehicles are size 18 but have two equipment slots, so if you're going for medium bombardment you cram a bit more firepower per size in with a medium vehicle with two bombardment weapons compared to two statics with one each. Though since I believe vehicles have a minimum armor of 2 and static has a minimum of 1 the medium vehicles would be more cost.

Vehicle with 2 armor and 2 medium bombardment: 98 size, 196 cost
2 Static with 1 armor and 1 medium bombardment each: 104 size, 104 cost

Hum... probably not worth it even on the attack, where size matters. You'd be a bit tougher as well but since when you're on the attack the enemies are probably defending and not going for a breakthrough it wouldn't matter as much.

Edit: Actually I guess you would have to worry about counter battery fire in which case the to hit modifier and higher armor might be worthwhile.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2018, 01:25:12 AM by Bremen »
 

Offline Jorgen_CAB

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Re: C# Ground Forces Composition
« Reply #23 on: September 21, 2018, 04:51:18 AM »
No... that is not really how it works...

Let's say you have 100 light infantry with 10 light bombardment artillery in support versus 50 power armoured infantry with 10 light bombardment artillery in support. Roughly the same cost in upkeep and building costs. The same goes for vehicles with lighter anti-personnel weapons. Will there also not be some impact on Academy production of officers and such for filling of HQ and formations as well.

Here the power armoured infantry will quickly gain an advantage all else being equal.

You also need less HQ formations for high quality troops.

The way I see it... you will want to use quality formations and lots of support element with good firepower to back them up. As in real life you want the main firepower to come from supportive elements, the forward elements are there to take and hold ground.

**Edit**
Also not sure of loosing twice as many men from its formation the lower quality formation will loose more morale while the higher quality will loose less morale... which will effect the overall outcome of the battle as well.

This isn't a valid comparison. The point of having bombardment support would be to have them be less armored than the front line units, and that isn't possible with 1 armor infantry, so you would never use that combination.

So instead, let's do it as 50 power armor infantry (Size 250, cost 500) and 10 light bombardment infantry (Size 200 cost 200) vs 140 light armored infantry (size 700 cost 700).

It works out as basically a tie (the light infantry take 80 equivalent hits and inflict 140, but have twice the health, and will slaughter the artillery on a breakthrough or once the power armor is gone). A slight advantage to the power armor at most. And this is absolutely ideal circumstances where your heavily armored force is designed to massacre lightly armored infantry, while the light infantry have no weapons designed for use against power armor. If more realistically both the light and powered armor forces had a mix weapons, then the light infantry would massacre the power armor infantry. The same is also true if one side has a tech advantage; having more than 10 AP doesn't help against the light infantry, but it definitely does against the power armor.

Overall: Slight advantage to armoured units in same cost combat, strong advantage to armoured units in same numbers combat.

My whole point was that this only applies when transport size doesn't matter. And like Jorgen, you cherry picked an example where the power armor side was perfectly designed to kill unarmored infantry but the unarmored infantry had no anti-power armor weapons, and it still came down to a tie, not a slight advantage.

You could easily also say that both forces use the same number of rear support forces for the same cost. You will not armour your rear echelon troops in the same way you do front line units.

It is far more realistic to presume that both sides rear support assets cost roughly the same amount of build cost. This will give a significant advantage to high quality front line with high powered bombardment in support.

If you also add vehicles into the front line you add yet another dimension that can put advantage to the high quality troops as well, depending in how said vehicles are equipped.

Note that I never said there was no reason to use vehicles. I said that there was no reason other than transport size to use heavy armor.

Well... if you use more realistic hit chances you will see that with morale effects the bombardment infantry will become more powerful as the front line lose manpower. The back line will not loose morale either so the light infantry on the front will certainly break before the high quality infantry will.

So in that instance the high quality infantry will be more efficient.

Of course it will depend on the overall amount of weapons and armour that both forces are using. But the way I see it is that power armoured infantry will in generally be more effective when you consider training, supply costs and all the other overhead logistical costs. Light armoured infantry will probably be more effective when equipped with a mix of weapons in a defensive formation, mainly as garrisons. But mixing some light armoured infantry in regular forces (especially support elements) can be effective.

If bombardment weapons was not more effective on a per shot to kill ratio than front line troops they would be utterly useless in comparison costwise.

Of course there need to be good reason to include bombardment weaponry even in light infantry formations. Otherwise the combat model is flawed in my opinion.
« Last Edit: September 21, 2018, 06:48:04 AM by Jorgen_CAB »
 

Offline Father Tim

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Re: C# Ground Forces Composition
« Reply #24 on: September 21, 2018, 01:22:57 PM »
What it sounds like to me is that there will be no "one right answer" -- which makes me very happy.  One of the things that annoyed me about Starfire was the "BC(R) problem" -- the combination of size, speed, and firepower meant that everyone built capital-missile armed battlecruisers that were pretty much the same design.

I look forward to building my historical-themed armies and watching them clash with some AI formations.
 

Offline TCD

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Re: C# Ground Forces Composition
« Reply #25 on: September 21, 2018, 02:19:01 PM »
I agree. And just because I know that super heavy vehicles aren't the absolutely most efficient strategy doesn't mean I'm not going to build an army of ATATs. They just have to be viable enough.

The other detail I think still needs answering before you can decide on ground force composition is how ground forces even get onto the ground. It looks like we could potentially have large numbers of STO units, potentially with very heavy weapons. Do you wait until you've destroyed all the enemy STOs before attempting a landing*? If so presumably you can use large transports and any combination of mixed forces you want.

But if you're aiming for a contested landing then you may need to use an overwhelming number of smaller transports, and only infantry and light vehicles. And you probably need to accept heavy losses in the landing. So presumably whatever you land needs to be an all rounder. It would be very sad to only have support units survive the drop!

*Does anyone know if it will be possible to target STOs before they fire? Because if not you might be tempted to build some plasma cannonade STOs and keep them in reserve until the enemy heavy troop transports are 5s out.
 

Online DEEPenergy

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Re: C# Ground Forces Composition
« Reply #26 on: September 21, 2018, 02:55:30 PM »
Something that lightly armored mass infantry is really good at - policing planets after you've conquered them. IIRC unrest suppression is based on the amount rather than the quality of troops.
 

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Re: C# Ground Forces Composition
« Reply #27 on: September 21, 2018, 04:09:03 PM »
IIRC STO units benefit from Fortification bonuses, so there's no need to wait on the enemy to get close if they're fortified enough. Likewise, you can do a 'general bombardment' of the planet even without any specific targets and maybe hit some important defense units, but for actually effective orbit to surface fire you need FFDs or STO units actively firing at your fleet.

Although it'd be nice if we could have a way to find STO units from orbit before they fire.
 

Offline Bremen

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Re: C# Ground Forces Composition
« Reply #28 on: September 21, 2018, 08:02:09 PM »
Although it'd be nice if we could have a way to find STO units from orbit before they fire.

I actually think it would be kind of fun if you couldn't. Would add a reason to use ground troops instead of planetary bombardment against a planet, and the game could use more of those.
 
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Offline Whitecold

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Re: C# Ground Forces Composition
« Reply #29 on: September 22, 2018, 03:01:37 PM »
I looked a bit at the HCAP, and it seems to be one of the better weapons overall, probably a bit too good.
LAV is completely outclassed by HCAP. They have the same AP, the same total amount of damage. The only advantage of LAV is that it is 20% smaller, but that is directly offset that even a medium vehicle has only 40 HP, so you loose 33% of your damage output on overkill if you hit a medium tank. For anything lighter the overkill is even more significant, making HCAP the superior weapon even against light vehicles, which is exactly where LAV should shine.

Similarly, a 32 ton light vehicle with HCAP can destroy 2 light vehicles (60dmg vs 30HP each), while the 28 ton light LAV armed vehicle is completely outclassed, only able to destroy a single opponent per round, and doing obviously much worse against infantry.

There seems to be too little a gap in armor between anti-infantry and anti-armor.
 

 

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