Author Topic: Avoid Combat on Bombardment Units  (Read 1376 times)

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Offline harpyeagle (OP)

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Avoid Combat on Bombardment Units
« on: April 15, 2020, 03:00:07 PM »
If I enable "Avoid Combat" on a unit with a bombardment weapon, they will receive a penalty to hit and be hit in direct combat.  But will they also receive a penalty to hit when bombarding from a support position?

Edit1: Actually, this should probably go in the C# Mechanics sub forum.

Edit2: Also, what about anti-air? Are their anti-air attacks affected by the "Avoid Combat" setting?
« Last Edit: April 15, 2020, 06:14:13 PM by harpyeagle »
 

Offline Droll

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Re: Avoid Combat on Bombardment Units
« Reply #1 on: June 13, 2020, 09:35:43 AM »
If I enable "Avoid Combat" on a unit with a bombardment weapon, they will receive a penalty to hit and be hit in direct combat.  But will they also receive a penalty to hit when bombarding from a support position?

Edit1: Actually, this should probably go in the C# Mechanics sub forum.

Edit2: Also, what about anti-air? Are their anti-air attacks affected by the "Avoid Combat" setting?

Bombardment attacks are affected by their non-combat status
AA weapons will still attack ground units (basically AT with half pen), those attacks are affected by avoid combat, idk about actual AA attacks though.
 

Offline Thrake

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Re: Avoid Combat on Bombardment Units
« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2020, 07:07:45 AM »
What does non combatant even do, other than giving a malus?
 

Offline Jorgen_CAB

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Re: Avoid Combat on Bombardment Units
« Reply #3 on: June 15, 2020, 08:29:01 AM »
The only weapon that do not get a to-hit penalty in ground combat is STO which only fire one ships. All other units will get a to-hit penalty in ground combat so that include AA guns that fire on enemy fighters as well.

So... the only units that benefit from the non-combat smaller width are combat units such as HQ, construction, xenoarcheology, supply and FFD units as they don't fire on anything. In addition STO also benefit as they don't fire on ground units either.

The main benefit is that their size is smaller for combat purposes which means they are much less likely to be targeted by enemy fire than any other units.
 
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Offline xenoscepter

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Re: Avoid Combat on Bombardment Units
« Reply #4 on: June 15, 2020, 09:29:10 AM »
@Thrake
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What does non combatant even do, other than giving a malus?
Non-combat makes things smaller and harder to hit in exchange for making them bad at hitting back: http://aurora2.pentarch.org/index.php?topic=10096.msg116211#msg116211
So in other words, they have less chance of being selected as a target in the first place, AKA getting shot at.In return for that bonus, they have a hard time shooting back when they get shot at.


 - Non-Combat is useless on Bombardment Units as well as on AA Units. It's helpful for PWL in some circumstances, namely when combined with special capabilities like Boarding Capability or Mountain Terrain, where the offsets make these units much harder to hit while alleviating the malus to shoot back, provided they are fighting under the right conditions. PWL "Security" teams can also benefit from this if you mix them with other, bigger units. Think a body guard detachment or something, their job is to look after the Officer or help lead the crew in the event of an enemy boarding action. I'm 90% sure that crew on a ship don't have a Ground Unit size, but rather the crew fights in a separate phase after the GUs present do. I might be wrong, though.

 - That all being said, I find Light Vehicles w/ CAP and Non-Combat to be pretty good as APCs. The idea is that an APC, only brings the infantry to the battle and that's it, unlike an IFV which also supports them in battle. So my APCs have Non-Combat in some cases to simulate that. In mechanical terms this is advantageous for a few reasons. The APCs are much smaller when they are designated as a Non-Combat, 4.8 tons to be exact or more practically speaking ~5 Tons, which is exactly the same size as PW Infantry. They have better armor than infantry though, so when they are selected they don't take as much damage from equal tech PW/PWI/CAP... hell even LB/LAC/MB can't pen too well at equal tech, although they do a good bit better overall.

 - So Non-Combat APCs end up saving the lives of my PW Infantry, and still have a 1/3 chance of being selected instead of my CAP Infantry. They have nearly a 25% chance of being selected over my LAV Infantry and they're 25% more likely to be selected over PWL. They even have a 20% chance of being selected as a target over LB/LAA Infantry, meaning that just one of those APCs will increase their survival rates by 60% versus everything merely by having one for every four of them. These end up being my Motorized Forces, and I tend to use them on more backwater or frontier worlds since the Infantry can dig in quite well, further enhancing their ability to hold out. These APCs also make a good Ambulance for Role-Play and good protection for Infantry based Small Logistics. Just one Non-Combat APC can extend the survival of two Small Logistics by 25% or conversely extended the life expectancy of a single 2,000 HQ Infantry Unit by 50%

« Last Edit: June 15, 2020, 09:40:08 AM by xenoscepter »
 
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Offline Droll

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Re: Avoid Combat on Bombardment Units
« Reply #5 on: June 16, 2020, 03:09:30 PM »
@Thrake
Quote
What does non combatant even do, other than giving a malus?
Non-combat makes things smaller and harder to hit in exchange for making them bad at hitting back: http://aurora2.pentarch.org/index.php?topic=10096.msg116211#msg116211
So in other words, they have less chance of being selected as a target in the first place, AKA getting shot at.In return for that bonus, they have a hard time shooting back when they get shot at.


 - Non-Combat is useless on Bombardment Units as well as on AA Units. It's helpful for PWL in some circumstances, namely when combined with special capabilities like Boarding Capability or Mountain Terrain, where the offsets make these units much harder to hit while alleviating the malus to shoot back, provided they are fighting under the right conditions. PWL "Security" teams can also benefit from this if you mix them with other, bigger units. Think a body guard detachment or something, their job is to look after the Officer or help lead the crew in the event of an enemy boarding action. I'm 90% sure that crew on a ship don't have a Ground Unit size, but rather the crew fights in a separate phase after the GUs present do. I might be wrong, though.

 - That all being said, I find Light Vehicles w/ CAP and Non-Combat to be pretty good as APCs. The idea is that an APC, only brings the infantry to the battle and that's it, unlike an IFV which also supports them in battle. So my APCs have Non-Combat in some cases to simulate that. In mechanical terms this is advantageous for a few reasons. The APCs are much smaller when they are designated as a Non-Combat, 4.8 tons to be exact or more practically speaking ~5 Tons, which is exactly the same size as PW Infantry. They have better armor than infantry though, so when they are selected they don't take as much damage from equal tech PW/PWI/CAP... hell even LB/LAC/MB can't pen too well at equal tech, although they do a good bit better overall.

 - So Non-Combat APCs end up saving the lives of my PW Infantry, and still have a 1/3 chance of being selected instead of my CAP Infantry. They have nearly a 25% chance of being selected over my LAV Infantry and they're 25% more likely to be selected over PWL. They even have a 20% chance of being selected as a target over LB/LAA Infantry, meaning that just one of those APCs will increase their survival rates by 60% versus everything merely by having one for every four of them. These end up being my Motorized Forces, and I tend to use them on more backwater or frontier worlds since the Infantry can dig in quite well, further enhancing their ability to hold out. These APCs also make a good Ambulance for Role-Play and good protection for Infantry based Small Logistics. Just one Non-Combat APC can extend the survival of two Small Logistics by 25% or conversely extended the life expectancy of a single 2,000 HQ Infantry Unit by 50%

This is an interesting outlook on combat units being designated non-combat. However, wouldn't APCs do even better at this role if they were combat units? They would soak up 5x the shots that way while also being able to shoot back better. Non-combat doesn't exactly make them cheaper. You could just have less APCs and more space for the combat infantry. Or just have the same no. of APCs that soak up all the shots. The only way I see this being mechanically useful is if AT weapons somehow have a targeting bias based on unit size, which would mean that being targeted less means less chance of taking shots that can penetrate.
 

Offline Jorgen_CAB

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Re: Avoid Combat on Bombardment Units
« Reply #6 on: June 16, 2020, 04:38:10 PM »
@Thrake
Quote
What does non combatant even do, other than giving a malus?
Non-combat makes things smaller and harder to hit in exchange for making them bad at hitting back: http://aurora2.pentarch.org/index.php?topic=10096.msg116211#msg116211
So in other words, they have less chance of being selected as a target in the first place, AKA getting shot at.In return for that bonus, they have a hard time shooting back when they get shot at.


 - Non-Combat is useless on Bombardment Units as well as on AA Units. It's helpful for PWL in some circumstances, namely when combined with special capabilities like Boarding Capability or Mountain Terrain, where the offsets make these units much harder to hit while alleviating the malus to shoot back, provided they are fighting under the right conditions. PWL "Security" teams can also benefit from this if you mix them with other, bigger units. Think a body guard detachment or something, their job is to look after the Officer or help lead the crew in the event of an enemy boarding action. I'm 90% sure that crew on a ship don't have a Ground Unit size, but rather the crew fights in a separate phase after the GUs present do. I might be wrong, though.

 - That all being said, I find Light Vehicles w/ CAP and Non-Combat to be pretty good as APCs. The idea is that an APC, only brings the infantry to the battle and that's it, unlike an IFV which also supports them in battle. So my APCs have Non-Combat in some cases to simulate that. In mechanical terms this is advantageous for a few reasons. The APCs are much smaller when they are designated as a Non-Combat, 4.8 tons to be exact or more practically speaking ~5 Tons, which is exactly the same size as PW Infantry. They have better armor than infantry though, so when they are selected they don't take as much damage from equal tech PW/PWI/CAP... hell even LB/LAC/MB can't pen too well at equal tech, although they do a good bit better overall.

 - So Non-Combat APCs end up saving the lives of my PW Infantry, and still have a 1/3 chance of being selected instead of my CAP Infantry. They have nearly a 25% chance of being selected over my LAV Infantry and they're 25% more likely to be selected over PWL. They even have a 20% chance of being selected as a target over LB/LAA Infantry, meaning that just one of those APCs will increase their survival rates by 60% versus everything merely by having one for every four of them. These end up being my Motorized Forces, and I tend to use them on more backwater or frontier worlds since the Infantry can dig in quite well, further enhancing their ability to hold out. These APCs also make a good Ambulance for Role-Play and good protection for Infantry based Small Logistics. Just one Non-Combat APC can extend the survival of two Small Logistics by 25% or conversely extended the life expectancy of a single 2,000 HQ Infantry Unit by 50%

This is an interesting outlook on combat units being designated non-combat. However, wouldn't APCs do even better at this role if they were combat units? They would soak up 5x the shots that way while also being able to shoot back better. Non-combat doesn't exactly make them cheaper. You could just have less APCs and more space for the combat infantry. Or just have the same no. of APCs that soak up all the shots. The only way I see this being mechanically useful is if AT weapons somehow have a targeting bias based on unit size, which would mean that being targeted less means less chance of taking shots that can penetrate.

To be honest I don't get why giving a combat unit "non-combat" status would help with ANYTHING as they will just make sure the OTHER combat units are targeted first and not last so they don't protect anything?!?

"non-combat" only make the units smaller for targeting purposes not less easy to actually kill... that is why it make very little sense to use that in any unit that fire back on the opponent. Infantry are there to take the hit from more valuable targets in many ways.
 

Offline xenoscepter

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Re: Avoid Combat on Bombardment Units
« Reply #7 on: June 16, 2020, 06:02:11 PM »
Ah yes, I forgot one detail... and an important one at that. My mistake. :)

Those APCs being bigger would make them better at soaking fire, but it is useful when combined with other, bigger formations, or as part of a combined arms approach. Target selection is based on weight, so having those APCs count as smaller for those purposes makes the entire formation smaller, which in turn makes other, beefier formations easier to soak the real damage. To be fair, I have had better luck with them in a support role then in a combat role; they make good ancillaries to support and rear echelon formations.

To be clear the advantage lies in the protection they afford for the size they confer, the maluses are outweighed by the beneifts. 1 CAP per vehicle isn't much loss in firepower if it helps your MBTs / IFVs soak more fire than the APCs, but your APCs soak more fire than the infantry who are very squishy. However, I tend to use Motorized APC formations, Mechanized IFV formations and Armored MBT formations... so maybe it's just good in that specific use.

My Armored companies tend to be around 6,000 Tons, my IFV Companies 4,000 Tons and my Motorized tend to be around 5,000 Tons with around half of that being APCs, so they are closer to 3,000 Tons effectively with Non-Combat. I use the Armored in the attack role, the Mechanized in an attack / defense role based on the situation and Motorized in a dedicated defense role. By having the overall formation be smaller I hope to get the Motorized targeted less and the hard units targeted more.

This is still very much in testing btw. I've had success using these APCs to defend my Small Logistics as well as beefing up my Support / Rear Echelon forces. I was at that point using them in tandem with Combat APCs, but I am now seeing if they might do better than them all around. Time will tell, and the results with the Support/Rear were certainly surprising... However, time will tell if they stand up to the ire of NPRs, both of these concepts remain unproven outside of... well, you could call them "Wargames" I suppose.
 

Offline Ulzgoroth

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Re: Avoid Combat on Bombardment Units
« Reply #8 on: June 16, 2020, 06:30:08 PM »
In aggregate I think it doesn't actually matter for targeting what units you have in which front-line formations. Each formation draws fire proportionate to its size, and each element within it draws a share of that fire proportionate to its size - so in effect every unit draws fire proportionate to its size.

Loading up your front line with expendable tonnage does reduce the chance of the nicer bits getting hit, but only by making those nicer bits a smaller share of the lineup.

Making the APCs 'avoid combat' makes them draw less fire away from the other targets in your force. And it doesn't make them any harder to kill when they do draw fire, it just makes them less likely to be fired on at all.

(It sounds like you may be using 'APCs' for RP reasons, since there's no game mechanics involving vehicles transporting infantry. So maybe they're not actually units that you'd be using if you were only following the mechanics? At that point, giving them 'avoid combat' to keep them from eating wastefully heavy casualties might help...)
 

Offline xenoscepter

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Re: Avoid Combat on Bombardment Units
« Reply #9 on: June 16, 2020, 07:24:43 PM »
Ulzogororth
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In aggregate I think it doesn't actually matter for targeting what units you have in which front-line formations. Each formation draws fire proportionate to its size, and each element within it draws a share of that fire proportionate to its size - so in effect every unit draws fire proportionate to its size.

Loading up your front line with expendable tonnage does reduce the chance of the nicer bits getting hit, but only by making those nicer bits a smaller share of the lineup.

Making the APCs 'avoid combat' makes them draw less fire away from the other targets in your force. And it doesn't make them any harder to kill when they do draw fire, it just makes them less likely to be fired on at all.

(It sounds like you may be using 'APCs' for RP reasons, since there's no game mechanics involving vehicles transporting infantry. So maybe they're not actually units that you'd be using if you were only following the mechanics? At that point, giving them 'avoid combat' to keep them from eating wastefully heavy casualties might help...)

^This.

 - This is what I intend to test. I'm not sure if the "Non-Combat" works at the aggregate level or not. I often have Small Logistics Units in my forces, which are typically Non-Combat. I began using the Non-Combat APCs as a way to increase the protection of them w/o increasing the chance they would get shot at in the first place. The Non-Combat APC is a 5-Ton Unit for the purposes of target selection, so adding one per two Small Logistics and four Small Logistics Units per formation gave me some supply grace while offering those supplies a 20% increase in survival rates. I used these mainly in Support / Rear Echelon formations at first to offer some protection to the supplies in case of a breakthrough. It seemed to work ok as far as I could tell, so I upgraded these "Support APCs" to front line work, but kept them as an escort for Small Logistics Units. Seemed to work ok, so I created a 2,000 Template around the concept, making that template need 250 GSP and have a 2,000 Ton Infantry HQ. In that one I upgraded the Small Logistics to a regular Infantry one, and that formation did very well indeed... at least against everything I felt it "should" do well against.

 - These have been tested in situations designed around what they should be good against. A real combat situation will always be hairy-er than that by a mile. The goal is to design and test a variety of ground units designed for a variety of roles, then create a hierarchy of formations based off of these that is designed to bring them all together into a cohesive fighting force. That's where this test is going to come in. Ground Battles are decided by a combination of Superior Tech & Superior Numbers, which makes sense considering Aurora's focus on the Strategic level above all else. If, and that's a big IF, these Support APCs lower the overall size of a formation for the purposes of targeting, that means I can use them as an elastic backline while my IFVs and MBTs do all the heavy lifting. These formations would have Fire Support elements attached to them, the Motorized have Medium AA and Light Bombardment units attached to them in a support formation. They also have Light Anti-Vehicle and Light Anti-Air teams contained within the Motorized Companies themselves.

 - They're intended to give me more control over how and when things get shot at. The concept is three fold; The MBTs are my attack line, the Motorized is my elastic defense. I have cheap infantry formations to be assigned always to defense, but these are only about 1,500 Tons per formation, so the Motorized is stil the priority... or at least it should be. If not, then the whole concept falls apart. IFVs would then defend if I need to grind down the enemy, or attack if it can give me the advantage, they're a flex unit. With the Non-Combat APCs, the Motorized formation would be smaller than the IFV formation, so when using the IFVs on the defense they would take the priority over them. They're smaller than the Armored Companies though, so when used in the attack the armored will still attack first with the goal of creating breakthroughs that the IFVs could exploit.

 - Now I still have no idea if this actually works or not. I do know that those Support APCs do work when used to defend Small Logistics, and they work quite well at that. I also know that if you mix your APCs into your MBTs, which I have done often, that these Support APCs work well with infantry. I'm not going to argue that they are better in protecting than regular APCs, because they aren't. Combat APCs are indeed 5x better at that role than Non-Combat ones. What the Support APCs are good at is making sure that when you have bigger, harder, beefier targets to shoot at that neither the APCs or the infantry get shot at. What makes the Support APCs so good at this is that when they are made Non-Combat they get a target size reduction of 80%, which with a CAP makes them 5-Tons or the equivalent of 1x PW Infantry. Having four of those PW Infantry per Support APC gives you Infantry with 20% better rate of survival, all in a 25-Ton package, so my 62 ton MBTs will end up getting shot at twice as much as the APCs and Infantry combined.

It's not the best for everything, but I mentioned it here because it seemed promising. :)

However, OP asked about Bombardment units, not Non-Combat in general. If you would like to continue this discussion I would request you create a separate thread. I'm really not invested enough to do so myself as the concept, while thus far promising, lacks any real battle experience... so I don't want to spend too much time expounding on the idea if it turns out not to work for some reason. It should... but then again, lots of things in Aurora should work, but for one reason or another end up not working.
 

Offline Jorgen_CAB

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Re: Avoid Combat on Bombardment Units
« Reply #10 on: June 16, 2020, 07:44:16 PM »
I can assure you that it is just a simple size reduction which also means as other units gets destroyed before them they will be more and more likely to get hit while still having an awful aiming problem as they try to stay out of the fight but have no one else to hide behind.

It really is NO point in using it in the way you think it will turn out... it is for the same reason there is very little reason to put infantry in support or rear echelon positions rather than fill up those formation with more support element instead as putting the infantry in the front means they protect those support elements much better. As long as the support and rear elements are large enough they should rarely cause enemy much of any breakthrough chance anyway. If you want to pad the units in the rear use cheap light AA guns... at least they can do something while they are there if the enemy has any fighters... if not you can move them to the front to bolster the defences.
 

Offline froggiest1982

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Re: Avoid Combat on Bombardment Units
« Reply #11 on: June 16, 2020, 07:55:41 PM »
Ah yes, I forgot one detail... and an important one at that. My mistake. :)

Those APCs being bigger would make them better at soaking fire, but it is useful when combined with other, bigger formations, or as part of a combined arms approach. Target selection is based on weight, so having those APCs count as smaller for those purposes makes the entire formation smaller, which in turn makes other, beefier formations easier to soak the real damage. To be fair, I have had better luck with them in a support role then in a combat role; they make good ancillaries to support and rear echelon formations.

To be clear the advantage lies in the protection they afford for the size they confer, the maluses are outweighed by the beneifts. 1 CAP per vehicle isn't much loss in firepower if it helps your MBTs / IFVs soak more fire than the APCs, but your APCs soak more fire than the infantry who are very squishy. However, I tend to use Motorized APC formations, Mechanized IFV formations and Armored MBT formations... so maybe it's just good in that specific use.

My Armored companies tend to be around 6,000 Tons, my IFV Companies 4,000 Tons and my Motorized tend to be around 5,000 Tons with around half of that being APCs, so they are closer to 3,000 Tons effectively with Non-Combat. I use the Armored in the attack role, the Mechanized in an attack / defense role based on the situation and Motorized in a dedicated defense role. By having the overall formation be smaller I hope to get the Motorized targeted less and the hard units targeted more.

This is still very much in testing btw. I've had success using these APCs to defend my Small Logistics as well as beefing up my Support / Rear Echelon forces. I was at that point using them in tandem with Combat APCs, but I am now seeing if they might do better than them all around. Time will tell, and the results with the Support/Rear were certainly surprising... However, time will tell if they stand up to the ire of NPRs, both of these concepts remain unproven outside of... well, you could call them "Wargames" I suppose.

There. Only use of non combat is for all units attached to the HQ. You need these to be fundamentally smaller than the other formations present in your hierarchy to reduce the chance of them being targeted first.

The higher you go with your hierarchy the bigger the problem.

I have reworked my way of designing the ground units for the same very reason. There is absolutely no point in getting a brigade a division and then a corp on top unless you are using separate designs. It is way more convenient to design a brigade division tree and a division corp tree as separate formations.

Offline Ulzgoroth

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Re: Avoid Combat on Bombardment Units
« Reply #12 on: June 16, 2020, 09:19:41 PM »
Weighted chance to hit doesn't mean 'the biggest thing gets hit, the rest don't'. It means everything takes hits in proportion to its size. And that goes for each kind of hit too, it's not like the HAV shots prioritize the big game while the CAP is reserved for the small fry.

It is true that if your APC is targeted as if it's 5 tons and you put it next to 20 tons of infantry, the infantry will take 20% fewer hits. You'd get the exact same result, however, from slotting in another 5 ton infantry unit...at a much lower price, less transport tonnage, and more firepower. Or you could pay the same price and have the infantry take 55% fewer hits, and the APC actually be capable of causing some damage itself, which is clearly an improvement if you're expecting the APC to survive the hits.


EDIT: Upshot is, making a unit avoid combat helps protect that unit, but it doesn't help protect any other unit. Even with fragile high-value HQ formations, making the overall formation small doesn't really make a difference on average. Adding bulk increases the chance of the formation being hit, but reduces the chance of the valuable parts of the formation being hit by the same factor.
« Last Edit: June 16, 2020, 09:36:19 PM by Ulzgoroth »
 

 

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