EU4 - Development Diary - 10th March 2016

Hello everyone, and welcome to another development diary for Europa Univeralis IV. Today, we focus on many of the core aspects of Mare Nostrum, our next expansion.

First, we have completely changed how naval missions work, introducing a unified system that includes settings for when your ships should return to port for repairs and how aggressive the fleets should be.

Naval Missions are selected from the new mission interface, and each mission targets either a sea/coastal region or a trade node. The old missions to Protect Trade, privateer, Hunt Pirates and Explore are available (depending on which expansions you currently own), just as before, but Mare Nostrum adds three new naval missions.
  • Hunt Enemy Fleets - Your ships will automatically try to hunt down weaker enemy fleets in the region to sink them.
  • Blockade Enemy Ports - This divides your fleet, and attempts to blockade as many ports as possible in the region.
  • Intercept Transports - Your ships will protect coastlines in region and prioritize attacks on any transport fleet.
1ToyfDJ.jpg


The Detach Damaged feature for Ships has gotten a huge boost in Mare Nostrum. Now, ships that are detached from a fleet will a automatically rejoin their original fleet when they have been repaired.

In 1.16, naval leaders will also get siege pips. Each of those pips will increase blockade efficiency by 10%. If you have Mare Nostrum, you’ll now also able to reassign naval leaders while fleets are at sea, as long as they are within supply range.

Some people have complained about how blockades are not really visible. Now there is also a thick red line on the coastlines where you are blockaded, and a purple one is shown where you blockade.
cLuCFtl.jpg


Naval Combat has gotten a complete overhaul as well. First of all, we removed the positioning mechanic, as it was not terribly useful, and players couldn’t really affect it anyway.

Now, there is a restriction in how many ships can fire at a single time in a naval combat. 20 ships is the baseline, 10% more ships can fire in coastline, and there is a variation of 10% more or less based on the differences between the maneuver ability of each fleet’s commander..

Also, Morale Damage is inflicted on all ships still floating whenever a ship is sunk, with up to 2% damage.

A ship being sunk has a chance of being captured instead of sunk, which depends on the enemy commanders maneuver value. If a fleet retreats, all its captured ships are immediately scuttled.

Stay tuned, because next week, we’ll tell you all about condottieri !
 
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I often find myself not using naval leaders in wars, because then you'd sacrifice your only possible general without surpassing the leader limit (unless you use monarchs or have some type of increase).
 
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Disappointed with this DD... For a Mare Nostrum DLC i still don't see any feature that makes naval and sea dominance impossible to ignore if you want to build a major empire. Quite the opposite now that you just don't have straits across oceans. Everything else is crossable without a single boat.
 
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Cheers for the DD Johan, naval improvements FTW :D. That blockading mission is a huge Quality of Life improvement :). Is there a button on the blockading ships to bring them all back together after the blockade is over? No biggy if not, but would be great if so.

Naval Combat has gotten a complete overhaul as well. First of all, we removed the positioning mechanic, as it was not terribly useful, and players couldn’t really affect it anyway.

Now, there is a restriction in how many ships can fire at a single time in a naval combat. 20 ships is the baseline, 10% more ships can fire in coastline, and there is a variation of 10% more or less based on the differences between the maneuver ability of each fleet’s commander..

Also, Morale Damage is inflicted on all ships still floating whenever a ship is sunk, with up to 2% damage.

A ship being sunk has a chance of being captured instead of sunk, which depends on the enemy commanders maneuver value. If a fleet retreats, all its captured ships are immediately scuttled.

Stay tuned, because next week, we’ll tell you all about condottieri !

My (quite limited) understanding of naval combat during the period was that it progressed from actions focussed on boarding (start of the period) to more cannon-based combat with the advent of the 'race built galleon' (around the time of the Spanish Armada - that's not to say ships didn't duke it out with cannons before that, but that boarding was quite a thing prior to that), and that from around then up until until the British started getting imaginative towards the end of the game's timeline (the likes of Trafalgar) the two navies heavies would line up against each other and slug it out, with the lighter ships providing support, running signals and whatnot, but generally not lining up against the heavies, as it wouldn't generally end well.

What's coming in the next expansion sounds good, but if there was some way of working in the historical development of naval combat through the period in a bit more depth, and now that sailors are a thing, it should be a lot easier modelling the transition between boarding-centric naval combat (which could also help provide the basis for naval combat in CK2) and the shift to cannon becoming more important in fleet actions, and could provide some interesting variation in naval gameplay over the timeline of the game. That said, do more research than I have (not much at all) before settling on a mechanic, if any of this sounds useful (if not, just ignore :)).

I do like the impact of the commander's maneuver value on the number of ships that can fire, a good rough proxy of the idea of a commander using their line well :). Am curious as to the rationale of more ships being able to fire on a coastline, feels odd, but again I'm no expert.
 
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Disappointed with this DD... For a Mare Nostrum DLC i still don't see any feature that makes naval and sea dominance impossible to ignore if you want to build a major empire. Quite the opposite now that you just don't have straits across oceans. Everything else is crossable without a single boat.

Yes, navies might be easier to use but they are still quite useless.
 
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Are there any plans to change the "exploration feature" which was added in El Dorado? (iirc). Because it is boring and 100% ahistorical to see ALL the land and sea regions in the world discovered by 1550. With the old system, you had at least to wait until 1600/1650, which, even if not accurate, was better. I think exploration voyages should cost a good amoutn of money. That way players wont simply click, click and clikc unitl everything they can discover thanks to their trade range is discovered.

Yes! Exploration is way too fast now. First of all, I think the spread of discovery shouldn't reveal all of the territory right away. It should show like capitals/centers of trade and some coastal provinces in the region. Then after some time a couple more provinces and finally all. Neither Europeans or Asians didn't really have clear picture of each other's continents for a long time because of the sheer distance. The whole area being Terra Incognita and then suddenly visible is unrealistic and really annoying. It also makes playing the exploration/colonization game boring.

Secondly, exploration missions are too fast and too easy. They should cost money, like they did in reality. Perhaps an incrased upkeep cost for the duration of the mission (and they should take a bit longer). Another possibility could be the chance of losing ships during the mission. it wouldn't be disastrous, but rebuilding lost ships takes time and money.

And what about attrition? Previously attrition was really a problem when exploring, now you don't have to think about it at all... Fleets should still take attrition during the missions (and thus consuming the new naval manpower too). Now they should be able to also repair in non-hostile coastal provinces to prevent them sinking during the mission. However, this repair would be a) very slow and b) couldn't fully rerpair ships due to limited resources/no acces to new crew members. If the fleets start to take too much attrition, they would try to return to nearest home port (fleet basin rights would ofc count too).
 
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Interesting changes. Definitely will make things easier.
I hope exploration will get an overhaul too since ships explore WAY TOO MUCH too quickly at the moment (Sometimes the entire pacific ocean in one go)
And the new territorial reveal mechanic is revealing too much of the map too quickly too
 
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Blockade efficiency? What does it even do? Last I can remember it was an obsolete feature that had 0 impact, what does 0% vs 20% even do?

I like that you redid combat.

The missions, I don't know. It seems like a single player feature only. Atleast it will cut down on micro when I build a large naval empire which is good.
 
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I often find myself not using naval leaders in wars, because then you'd sacrifice your only possible general without surpassing the leader limit (unless you use monarchs or have some type of increase).

This a lot.
I so wish the caps were separated.
 
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Disappointed with this DD... For a Mare Nostrum DLC i still don't see any feature that makes naval and sea dominance impossible to ignore if you want to build a major empire. Quite the opposite now that you just don't have straits across oceans. Everything else is crossable without a single boat.
Here's a suggestion: during wars, straits would be crossable only if the crossing army (or their side in the war) controls the province from where they are crossing the strait. Control meaning either owned, allied or occupied province. Crossing the strait represents commandeering merchant ships and such to cross the water, but you'd need to have control of the ports to do this.

Crossing should also take longer and have a small amount of attritition for the army. This would sort of represent either taking the ships by force or paying for them (due to reinforcement cost).
 
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Can fleets still be moved manually? (Please say no)
 
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I believe reading in a previous DD that blockading will have a much larger influence on the warscore, with a ticking (increasing) score for keeping ports blockaded. This would be advantageous to force an enemy into submission by just blockading their ports, add in the siege pip stat on an admiral and this happens faster.

I am curious as to what happens if you have a single fleet with a good admiral and use the blockade ports option, does the admiral bonus apply to all small sub fleets that are automatically split off the main fleet or does the admiral only stay with a 'single' fleet. Furthermore, how does the system keep track of the automatic splitting and merging?
 
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I often find myself not using naval leaders in wars, because then you'd sacrifice your only possible general without surpassing the leader limit (unless you use monarchs or have some type of increase).
Agreed. Generals and Admirals should have separate limits.
 
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Have you given any thought to abstracting fleet management even more? For instance by merging sea zones to trade node-size and creating an interception mechanic. This could also free up the UI heavily because you would only have to have like three buttons to toggle: pirate, offensive and defensive and the rest could be fixed by direct interaction with the map instead of the UI. If you also got rid of the ridiculous notion of having dedicated troop transports (WW2 called and would like their ships back! :p) I really think the naval game would be more tactical, less fiddly and much easier on the AI.

/Just my 2 cents
I agree, if they cannot make a really good naval simmulation (and I understand why they can't ships operate very diffrently from armies and their entire game engine is structured around how armies operate) they should just go for heavy abstraction after all the rulers of this time probably gave quite general orders to their admirals.
 
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Disappointed with this DD... For a Mare Nostrum DLC i still don't see any feature that makes naval and sea dominance impossible to ignore if you want to build a major empire. Quite the opposite now that you just don't have straits across oceans. Everything else is crossable without a single boat.

I'm also waiting for stuff that makes a powerful navy integral for a global empire but it should also quite possible and believable to have a powerful land-based empire that almost entirely ignores the navy. Like Russia, Ming or the PLC.

Now balancing those two things is probably going to be a horrible ordeal :D
 
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Why the nerf? Now some of the pips one could get from high tradition will go to a useless stat and I bet that there is an idea that increases it in the Naval or Maritime group.
Nope. With the current formula, admirals get only 3/4 as many points to assign as generals, since they have 3/4 as many stats.
See the wiki for details: http://www.eu4wiki.com/Military_leader#Formulas_for_point_distribution
I imagine that multiplication by 3/4 will be removed now that admirals have 4 stats, just like generals.
Which if anything will make them end up with more of the other stats, as siege is the least likely stat to get (10%, while the other three are 30%).
 
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I'm afraid that having only 20 ships being able to fight at the same time will give a huge advantage to heavy ships, effectively making galleys useless. This could be easily resolved by giving each ship a combat width though!
 
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I'm glad to see that you guys have done something to change the only real naval strategy in current version, 1) Put all ships in one doomstack 2) Send doomstack to fight enemy doomstack. Also pleased to see admirals getting some love. However, I'm very disappointed that nothing has been done to improve how transports work. Or perhaps this just hasn't been covered yet?
 
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Nope. With the current formula, admirals get only 3/4 as many points to assign as generals, since they have 3/4 as many stats.
See the wiki for details: http://www.eu4wiki.com/Military_leader#Formulas_for_point_distribution
I imagine that multiplication by 3/4 will be removed now that admirals have 4 stats, just like generals.
Which if anything will make them end up with more of the other stats, as siege is the least likely stat to get (10%, while the other three are 30%).
That's good. If the 3/4 multiplication gets removed, that is. Otherwise my point still stands. Although if Admirals and Generals keep using the same limit, then Admirals will still be of secondary utility.
 
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Um...
Now, there is a restriction in how many ships can fire at a single time in a naval combat. 20 ships is the baseline, 10% more ships can fire in coastline, and there is a variation of 10% more or less based on the differences between the maneuver ability of each fleet’s commander.
Johan, did you *mean* 10% more in coastal, or 10% less? It seems counter-intuitive.
 
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