#227 Defensive retreat


Feature where all non-casualty units have the option to retreat prior to defense roles.

example. attacker moves into territory and proceeds to role. He successfully hits with X roles. Defender chooses his casualties (X) and submits his entry. System prompts to ask him whether surviving troops (Y) will remain or retreat. If he chooses to remain all units (X+Y) get a defensive role. If he chooses to retreat only the casualties (X) get a defensive role. All surviving units (Y) forgo defensive rolls in order to vacate the territory.

I've brought this up before but it seems to bet met with little in the way of explanation as why this is do-able or not,or why it may not be a desirable feature. It seems to me like a real improvement to the depth of the game.


  • Chris Duncan

    Chris Duncan - 2010-12-23

    actually i considered this a while ago, and pulicat and I argued over what it would actually look like.

    for example, in my mind, this is how it would work:
    1. At the end of the round of battle, the defender is asked if they want to retreat. (asked before the attacker is asked)(also, this means there will be at least 2 rounds of battle).
    2. If they choose yes, then the attacker is asked a slightly different question: The defender is retreating, do you wish to retreat after the next round of battle?
    3. Then, during the next round of battle, the defender does not get any rolls at all.
    4. At the end of that round, the defender's remaining units get moved to the friendly territory they picked.
    5. If the attacker chose to stay, they will then take control of the territory with all units they have there.
    6. If the attacker chose to retreat, they will then retreat to the friendly territory they picked, and the Defender will be left in control of the now completely empty territory.

    ps, i have no clue how hard this is to implement, and i can't code much java, so this is all speculation.

  • Hepster

    Hepster - 2010-12-23

    Why wait until the end of the first round to prompt the retreat request?

    Why can't the retreat prompt happen after the initial volley from the attacker? Prior to rolling defensive & casualty roles(after considering the effectiveness/ineffectiveness of the opening attack roles, unit strengths , #'s of units, potential casualties, gut instinct, possible counter attack opportunities with or without a withdraw) the defender is given the retreat option. That way the attacker has no option to retreat (and leave a vacant territory) because once the casualty roles are made (if retreat is chosen by the defender) the battle is complete and the attacking army would take possession of the territory. If the defender chose to stay, then the attacker still has his retreat option intact! I for the life of me can't see how this could possibly hamper game-play. If anything, it is like moving the game from checkers to chess, or more like chess to 3-D star Trek chess. Now there is the element of thinking 2-3 rounds in advance. Simply (said without knowing how much work this creates from a coding stand-point) duplicate the retreat code written into the engine for the attacker and plop it into the division between the attackers role and the defensive role for each round of combat. This would make for a brand new & dynamic strategic game. Where opponents have the ability to deplete attacking armies or partially recover from horrific first roll losses by making strategic withdrawals. The attacking team looses nothing because there is total transparency on the board. So if the attacker knows there is a good base of defender units in the backfield should a withdrawal happen then he/she (she! LMAO) has to plan to re-enforce the newly captured terr. or plan to make a strategic withdrawal when the inevitable counter-attack happens the following round and then purchase or non-combat move to compensate for all factors. The addition of this feature would make units like trucks & trains all that more valuable as units that could move re-enforcements into newly captured territories without participating in combat. It would elevate game-play in every way. Just think of the naval potential. In stead of loosing all your naval units you could salvage some from a disastrous attack and then make moves to further your retreat. I honestly can't see a down side!

    Furthermore, while I'm not too keen on the process your suggesting ( however it'd be better then no defensive retreat option at all) why would the attacker be offered the option to retreat if the defender has already chosen to retreat? Wouldn't it make more sense to code it so that if the defender chooses to retreat then the battle is considered finished and the attackers retreat option is skipped(currently the game doesn't ask whether the attacker wants to retreat after all the defenders are killed, so why would it if only the already "dead" {casualties} defenders remain?). All offensive troops would take possession of the newly acquired territory as is normal already.

    Either way this is a home run! I'll admit that it is going to cause people to have to rethink what they know about potential strategies within the game, but would that really be a bad thing? Additionally, could this not be set up as a game option before launching as well? Like low luck or Tech Development.

  • Chris Duncan

    Chris Duncan - 2010-12-23

    The reason i structured mine the way i did, is because i believe defensive retreating is too powerful for the defense, and i want to make sure it hurts a good deal to use it.

    Your example does a couple of things, but the ones i disagree with most are:
    Free movement for defensive units
    The Dead still get to fight back
    Defense has information advantage over the attacker, in getting to choose this after seeing how the attacker rolls.
    Nullifies the ability of the attackers to choose if they want to hit and move. For example in a lot of games I attack then retreat, even though i am going to win the battle, because i do not want to sit in the territory (often the territory is a trap, for example).

  • Hepster

    Hepster - 2010-12-23

    I agree. It does elevate the defenders options. But lets think about this for a second...

    A) Generally when your already in defensive posture, you could really use the added bonus this would afford you. Realize that this doesn't negate the losses you've sustained, and since your forgoing all but your casualties roles, your not likely to inflict a great deal of damage during a retreat as your probably (in most cases where your retreating strategically anyway) leaving only inf. behind as casualties.

    B) As you get more comfortable with the "tech/feature" you would be able to compensate in your game play as an attacker and defender. As you get used to any game feature you get better at anticipating how it will affect future rounds and what re-enforcement units you will need to maintain an offensive push or defensive line. That is why I said "I'll admit that it is going to cause
    people to have to rethink what they know about potential strategies within
    the game, but would that really be a bad thing?" Having a new element to the game is a tremendous way to create excitement. Yes there will be challenges to finding a balance with this feature added, but is that reason enough not to try it (at least experimentally) and see what it potentially has to offer in revolutionizing the game as we know it? Look what NWO did for TripleA! Isn't it now the #1 game played on the lobby? What if the attitude towards changes for that had been "It'll be a bad change"?

    C) New/old mods could then be made/adjusted to account for this new defensive advantage/feature. Change some of the unit functions and abilities and it would offset the retreat advantage of the defender. I'm not suggesting that this change would act as a stand alone feature that could then just be plunked into all existing mods. If this were to be implemented (and I hope I'm building a case so that it will) it would clearly necessitate some other changes/tweaking within any games. That is why I suggested it be a optional choice before selecting a game. A small qualifying comment could be added to the menu's where it says "Defensive retreat compliant" so that people would know which games were balanced to account for this feature.

    At the end of the day I am joyfully willing to engage in an open discussion about how this would best be implemented, but no amount of discussion shall dis-way me from the belief that this is a great (and essential) evolutionary step for the game.

  • Chris Duncan

    Chris Duncan - 2010-12-23

    Sure, but the community should agree on what a defensive retreat IS before anything gets done about it. I'll start a post in the forum.
    At any rate, I'm not going to like any option that ruins the ability of the attackers to retreat after the first round.

  • Hepster

    Hepster - 2010-12-23

    Sorry, I meant to address another of your concerns.

    You mentioned about moving into a trap territory. My point is that as a attacker you can see this before you ever launch an attack! (that's what I meant about transparency) So if you already know that the territory you are about to attack is a potential trap, then you'd adjust the number of units (and which valuable units) your sending in to compensate for a potential withdraw. (Or not?! What will he do?!? I'm not sure! The fate of my western front could rest on the outcome of this battle! Holy Carp! I'm excited!) Additionally, isn't the attackers withdrawal option really an unfair advantage to the attacking armies? One you've just accepted and (like everyone else) gotten used to and adopted into how you build your strategies in each mod? How is balancing the field any different?


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