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Thread: Development Diary #27 - 6th of May 2009

  1. #181
    Johan and King,
    brilliant, this is simply brilliant. This will be the most fantastic computer game ever made (if everything comes together at least remotely as it sounds now. At this point you probably know already if it does.). I hope you will get rewarded by the sales figures. It is a shame that, while second world war is a good selling point, a lot of people will consider say winning WW2 for Germany a guilty pleasure and never be able to appreciate these great ideas.

  2. #182
    Major Marchalk_Zjukov's Avatar
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    Sounds good. But I am little worried that you have created the grandfather to Skynet
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  3. #183
    Manners Makyth Man Demi Moderator Lord Strange's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marchalk_Zjukov View Post
    Sounds good. But I am little worried that you have created the grandfather to Skynet
    Ah but this skynet will get annoyed when it doesn't realise that there are no panzer divisions- plus Kanitatlan and blue emu will lead us to victory over the robot armies with their great tactics
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  4. #184
    One point though for you devs:

    I fully understand, that the AI can not consider human controlled units in any way for its actions.

    But why do they have to drop out of the command structure thus losing all the bonuses.

    Just take the human controlled units/HQs out of any AI considerations, as they were not part of the theater, but let them in the chain of command structure for bonus reasons.

    To put it in other words: If I as player am messing around with an army corps under my personal control, I am punished enough by my limited intelligence. I should not be punished on top by losing all the chain of command bonuses.

  5. #185
    I'm waiting to see the AAR where the player attempts to ONLY use the AI to achieve their war objectives as if managing actual generals

  6. #186
    Philosopher of the Future Alexander Seil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joeenochs View Post
    One point though for you devs:

    I fully understand, that the AI can not consider human controlled units in any way for its actions.
    Why not? It can consider the current positions of human-controlled troops, which is enough (presumably the player will adjust AI orders when closer coordination is necessary), I hope.

    But why do they have to drop out of the command structure thus losing all the bonuses.
    That's not what they said. All Johan said is that you cannot issue orders to a subordinate formation of an AI-controlled "parent" without detaching it.

  7. #187
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    If the AI will really work as advertised, even single player campaigns will be very tough.

    You guys at Paradox are making the game I have always dreamed about. If I knew where your office were I'd bring you a case of beer, or red bull if you prefer, whatever you prefer.

    I'm serious.



    HoI3 will blow away everything previously programmed if it holds up to what is being presented in these dev diaries.

    I do have a few wishes though, concerning Air Combat.

    - Moving air combat. As suggested in another thread, fighters follow bombers that they are attacking instead of halting their movement. Fighters vs fighters should also be moving fights, with the side at a disadvantage seeking to disengage towards their home base(s). Air combat should never be possible outside of either side's combat radius. All of the above is quite obvious if you are programming a moving air combat system but I thought I'd put it in for clarity.

    - Smaller fighter units. Historically the smallest unit deployed was a Gruppe (for the Luftwaffe). So a Geschwader could have I. Gruppe deployed in Brest, II. Gruppe in La Spezia and III. Gruppe in Königsberg. It would make air defense easier as a whole Geschwader is a very big unit and expensive to build. A Gruppe would be ~50 fighters, compared to the ~150 of a Geschwader. 50 fighters can make a big impact and inflict heavy losses even on a 200 4-engine bomber raid, if they use appropriate tactics and have the speed and firepower required. The bottom line is, in HoI2 the Geshwader sized fighter unit was too expensive to build in the quantities required to effectively defend your airspace. You do not need 150 fighters operating together to inflict casualties on a 400 bomber formation. 50 fighters yes, that is a sensible number, but you can have 3 or 5 or 8 groups of 50 fighters (read Gruppen) operating independently against the same bomber formation and that will have a much greater effect than having all fighters bunched up into a "Big Wing", as some famous british officer said once upon a time.

    Take my word for it, I know a bit or two about air combat. If in doubt you are very welcome to download and view the movies from the link in my signature.

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  8. #188
    Procrastinator extraordinaire Registered's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alexander Seil View Post
    Why not? It can consider the current positions of human-controlled troops, which is enough , I hope.
    But it cannot rely on them being there a couple of hours/days later. The AI has no idea whether the player means to keep those troops there, have them attack or redeploy them to the other end of the world.
    Quote Originally Posted by Alexander Seil View Post
    (presumably the player will adjust AI orders when closer coordination is necessary)
    But then you might as well control the armies directly and not bother with the AI.
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  9. #189
    Quote Originally Posted by Lord Strange View Post
    Ah but this skynet will get annoyed when it doesn't realise that there are no panzer divisions- plus Kanitatlan and blue emu will lead us to victory over the robot armies with their great tactics
    And there will definately be the people who are gonna say

    Awww, you can't do that. That's gamey!

  10. #190
    Quote Originally Posted by Alexander Seil View Post
    That's not what they said. All Johan said is that you cannot issue orders to a subordinate formation of an AI-controlled "parent" without detaching it.
    But look, Alexander, that is the same thing. If I want to put the Eastern front to AI control, but mess around myself with the 6th army at Stalingrad, I have to take the 6th army out of the Eastern front chain of command, thus losing all the bonuses of the upper levels for the 6th army.
    Of course I could assign it to a human player controlled theater or army group, if I have such, but maybe tomorrow I want to mess around with the 8th army in the north of Russia or with the army group central. There is no way I have a redundant shadow chain of command structure in place everywhere, where I might want to take control from the AI in the future. That would be a total waste of IC.

    Of course, if the AI could even consider player controlled units in its actions, then this would be even more fantastic. But I find the plans presented by the devs really fantastic enough. So just allow a player controlled unit still be part of an AI chain of commands for bonus reasons, but hide it from the AI for planning reasons should be a straightforward fix, which should still be possible now or in a patch.

  11. #191
    Quote Originally Posted by joeenochs View Post
    But look, Alexander, that is the same thing. If I want to put the Eastern front to AI control, but mess around myself with the 6th army at Stalingrad, I have to take the 6th army out of the Eastern front chain of command, thus losing all the bonuses of the upper levels for the 6th army.
    Isn't that simply a realistic reflection of the meddling from a distance that actually occured during the war? If you want to micro-manage everything from Berlin, it only makes sense that the performance of your divisions may suffer as opposed to more localised command structures.

  12. #192
    Quote Originally Posted by Gwynn View Post
    Isn't that simply a realistic reflection of the meddling from a distance that actually occured during the war? If you want to micro-manage everything from Berlin, it only makes sense that the performance of your divisions may suffer as opposed to more localised command structures.
    Who says, that taking human control over an AI unit means controlling it from Berlin? It could as well mean, that you as a player slip into the role of General Paulus at Stalingrad.

    And even if you imagine, the unit is controlled from Berlin, the logistical backbone feeding it is still in place.

    I would even say, taking human control from AI for a unit simply is a game thing, which does not have any reflection in reality. So the ultimate design goal should be (as with everything) maximizing fun. So imho the right question to ask is, should you be discouraged from using this feature? The only argument I can imagine would be game balancing, but I don't see it, because you could always take full player control, if you appreciate the additional micro management.

    Nobody would argue for a penalty for switching off automatic trade or passing theater control, so why have one for switching off automatic unit control at any level?

    I think, the devs just understood, they couldn't ever consider human actions into AI planning, because human action is unpredictable. But they overshot a little in the solution.

  13. #193
    Philosopher of the Future Alexander Seil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Registered View Post
    But it cannot rely on them being there a couple of hours/days later. The AI has no idea whether the player means to keep those troops there, have them attack or redeploy them to the other end of the world.
    Same objection applies to the AI troops on the other side of the trenches. The best AI can do is simply assume that the player and/or enemy will keep their troops more or less in the same spot.

    Quote Originally Posted by joeenochs View Post
    But look, Alexander, that is the same thing. If I want to put the Eastern front to AI control, but mess around myself with the 6th army at Stalingrad, I have to take the 6th army out of the Eastern front chain of command, thus losing all the bonuses of the upper levels for the 6th army.
    Of course I could assign it to a human player controlled theater or army group, if I have such, but maybe tomorrow I want to mess around with the 8th army in the north of Russia or with the army group central. There is no way I have a redundant shadow chain of command structure in place everywhere, where I might want to take control from the AI in the future. That would be a total waste of IC.
    It's not the same thing because the scenario you're describing is downright weird. It's like giving general instructions to a Corps commander and then trying to micromanage the position of an artillery battery. In real life, no good would come of that. If you want that level of control, you have to delegate up to Army Group level at most (and only up to Army level in the Army Group of which 6th is a member). That's still a long way away from "microing" divisions, and frankly makes a lot more sense.

    The situation is just entirely artificial. I don't see why anyone would "skip" levels of command like that. Either you're interested in the Theater enough to order around individual armies, or you're not. All you have to do is just issue some basic orders to the remaining Army Groups and pay closer attention to the 6th Army's own Group.
    Last edited by Alexander Seil; 07-05-2009 at 01:49.

  14. #194
    Major Niker117's Avatar
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    This is gonna be awesome!... but still no picture of Argentina.

    Meh, I don't know what I'm complaining about. I'll have loads of time to play when the game comes out!

    Cheers;
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  15. #195
    Quote Originally Posted by Alexander Seil View Post
    It's not the same thing because the scenario you're describing is downright weird. It's like giving general instructions to a Corps commander and then trying to micromanage the position of an artillery battery. In real life, no good would come of that. If you want that level of control, you have to delegate up to Army Group level at most (and only up to Army level in the Army Group of which 6th is a member). That's still a long way away from "microing" divisions, and frankly makes a lot more sense.
    Alexander, this is exactly, what is going to happen.
    It will be possible to mess around as a player with any unit at any level. This is what Johan and King are saying. The question is only about the bonuses, the player controlled units/HQs will get.

    Once again, trying to understand, what taking human control from AI means in real life, is simply the wrong perspective. What does it mean in real life to switch off automatic trade or to switch of the espionage assitent?
    The player is god. He is outside of the model of reality.

  16. #196
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    Quote Originally Posted by Johan View Post
    Even while the German Western Theatre is off blitzing France a higher-level AI can look at and consider a plan for the invasion of Britain and start thinking is this worthwhile, what units it will need, and start building them.
    This is something revolutionary!

  17. #197
    Philosopher of the Future Alexander Seil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joeenochs View Post
    Alexander, this is exactly, what is going to happen.
    It will be possible to mess around as a player with any unit at any level. This is what Johan and King are saying. The question is only about the bonuses, the player controlled units get.

    Once again, trying to understand, what taking human control from AI means in real life, is simply the wrong perspective. What does it mean in real life to switch off automatic trade or to switch of the espionage assitent?
    The player is god. He is outside of the model of reality.
    My point is not that you're wrong, but that the scenario you're describing is unlikely for most players. If the AI is tied to the organizational structure in this way, so be it, it's no big loss.

  18. #198
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    Another great update! Can't wait to give the AI a try.

  19. #199
    Quote Originally Posted by Alexander Seil View Post
    My point is not that you're wrong, but that the scenario you're describing is unlikely for most players. If the AI is tied to the organizational structure in this way, so be it, it's no big loss.
    It is exactly the way I want to play this game (knowing how I played HOI 2 and what I missed). And I think many people want to. I think it is logical and I see it from the posts. It is also a style of play suggested by Johan:

    You produce units for the Eastern front, let the AI prepare and then launch Barbarossa. You look at the AIs progress. You are satisfied with the performance of army groups north and south but army group central gets stuck just before moscow. Now you want to see, if you as a player can manage the crisis. Now you succeed in taking moscow or you cancel your attack on moscow because of the winter, and your interest turns to army group south or maybe to Africa.

  20. #200
    Philosopher of the Future Alexander Seil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by joeenochs View Post
    It is exactly the way I want to play this game (knowing how I played HOI 2 and what I missed). And I think many people want to. I think it is logical and I see it from the posts. It is also a style of play suggested by Johan:

    You produce units for the Eastern front, let the AI prepare and then launch Barbarossa. You look at the AIs progress. You are satisfied with the performance of army groups north and south but army group central gets stuck just before moscow. Now you want to see, if you as a player can manage the crisis. Now you succeed in taking moscow or you cancel your attack on moscow because of the winter, and your interest turns to army group south or maybe to Africa.
    Johan isn't suggesting that OKH be assigned to AI control. The implication is that Army Groups North and South are under AI control, but Army Group Center is not.

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