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-   -   Range doubling (http://forum.shrapnelgames.com/showthread.php?t=52537)

Kiwikkiwik September 28th, 2020 06:09 PM

Range doubling
I put this reply over here because it isn't really about swimming tanks any more.

OK not happening, But I just want to be sure you know what it is you're not doing.
-All- you need to do is double all the weapon ranges*. That's it! you don't have to do anything with hexes or maps. The Hex sizes are an abstraction , when you label them 50m you now just label them 25m, job done! but they are exactly the same hexes. Just doubling the weapons ranges, without doing anything else, automagically makes the hexes 25m without touching the maps at all or having to do anything else! Doubling the range also automagically halves another abstraction, the turn time, again without actually having to do anything extra. Doubling ranges is so incredibly simple and so incredibly powerful.
I started to produce the Mods for other users but hit a snag. The functionality to import edited .csv files back into the .obf file has been removed. So instead of doing the change in 5 seconds with something like =IF(Range>99,199,Range*2) in an excel spreadsheet I have to do thousands of clicks in Mobhack can we please reinstate the ability to import .csv file into the .obf file?
I have some more good news. I did painstakingly double ranges in Mobhack for a whole lot of tanks, infantry, field pieces etc and then played scenario 007 using the Modded OOBs. Guess what SCENARIO PLAYS FINE with the doubled weapon ranges.

Hello troopie
Ok so first you don't need to do anything with any Units, nothing. All you need to do is double all the Weapons ranges. unfortunately that is extremely tedious because of the removed .obf(OOB) file import functionality.
With 25m hexes you will still have an on-board direct fire range maximum of 5 kms with 199. So not a problem, nothing can really direct fire that far anyway let alone see or identify what it's shooting at. ie friend or foe. Anything with an effective range of over 5k has, or probably should have, indirect fire anyway
And yes, it certainly looks as though it doesn't make one jot of difference to scenarios. So lets go for it!
They originally set map hexes to 50m, probably because the original maps and screens were so small it gave more scope to the game. With the much bigger maps and screens it makes perfect sense to make the hexes 25m and I am sure this change would have the blessing of the original designers. It is a natural, nay essential, progression. So little work, such grand results. The necessary evil of the ROF/Movement discrepancy fixed, and fixed so easily!!!!

And don't forget the doubled ranges match much more closely/correctly to the Icon size. The rifleman icon looks big enough to hit something at 20 hexes, now he can.

*Accuracy, Fire control and Rangefinder values might need tweaking but play fine unchanged. You don't even need to touch any code! This is a very doable, very straight forward change. Please take the time to think about this, its an absolutely massive winner and so simple to do. There is NO downside. Please ask me if anything I say is unclear.

Mobhack September 28th, 2020 07:18 PM

Re: Range doubling
The import csv into mobhack was deleted because it was a way to bring unvalidated data en masse into the OOBs, with no error checking whatsoever. Not coming back.

Feel free to produce your own OOBs with your changes in it and post them on the mods forum so anyone interested can discuss them there.

Felix Nephthys September 29th, 2020 06:02 AM

Re: Range doubling
This is obviously never going to happen anyways, but I'm wondering if Kiwi has ever thought about what other players want. I for one am satisfied with the way it is as far as the ranges are concerned (besides, if you double the ranges you would have to double the size of the map as well). The only issue I might have would be some periodic odd behavior for aircraft but I've posted about that before, doubling ranges has never entered my mind. I think though that making your own mod and posting it would be your best bet as Mobhack has said before, that's why the tools are there in the game right?

Kiwikkiwik October 8th, 2020 04:06 AM

Re: Range doubling
Hi Felix
Thanks for your input I think maybe I am not explaining clear enough because I'm not sure why you think the map size needs to double. Map is now 10 kilometers by 8 kilometers If you doubled ranges map size would become 5 kilometers by 4 kilometers but still have the same number of hexes but would be called 25m hexes instead of 50m hexes, but are the same hexes.
Yes I do think about what other players want and I think they want a game that accurately reflects ww2 combat. As I explained earlier one of the big game problems is that the rate of fire of a unit doesn't match its rate of movement. For example a M8 greyhound can travel 30 hexes (90kph) a turn that means it can travel one and a half kilometers in a single turn. If you divide the distance travelled in a turn into the vehicles speed per turn, ie 5400m per minute divided by 1500m travelled, you find that a turn is 3.6 minutes.

So a turn is 3.6 minutes long.
The Greyhounds 37mm guns rate of fire is 10 rpm (and I'm being very conservative here).

So if the Greyhound sat still for a turn and fired its 37mm gun for that turns 3.6 minutes then it should get (3.6x10) 35 shots in that turn. It gets 6.

So calculating turn times using speed gives a way different turn time than if you calculate turn time using ROF and they -should- give the same result. So that's a problem. But I have the solution.

You can fix this by making the hexes 25m instead of 50m which is achieved by simply doubling ranges nothing more. With just that simple change;

Greyhound now travels .75klm instead of 1.5klm in a turn, turn is now 1.7min instead of 3.6min, Greyhound that should have got 35 shots/turn now should get 17 shots/turn (half) a big improvement because 17 is much closer than 35 to the games 6 shots. ie The discrepancy between speed and ROF is now only half as bad as it was. And considering actual real engagement ROFs about right.

All this is accomplished by just doubling the ranges, nothing else!

Hi Mobhack
Oh I'm sure you're good enough to put a little bit of error checking in place. What's the worst that can happen? I have to replace the OOB I buggered up by importing the spreadsheet data into it with the original I made a copy of before I buggered the OOB? I think I can live with that. Who knows maybe I could do it error free? I bet I could.
I would like to make the Mod for you but when I see how much -unneccessary- work is required it puts me off, but I might get there. I'm sure other players could make good use of the import facility as well. Please, please reinstate it. Maybe put a user beware warning in there somewhere?

OK so obviously turn length varies according to the vehicle you choose to calculate it with but in my experience it's always somewhere between 3 and 4 minutes
Here's another example, Sherman M4A1, speed 13, (37kph) so can travel 650m per turn. calculate turn time, 2,220/650 gives turn time of 3.4 min. ROF for a Sherman 75 is usually given as 10-12 RPM lets say 5 rpm so 5x3.4 is 17 shots. So bare minimum shots per 3.4 minute turn is 17 shots. Game gives 3. So doubling the range means speed/ROF discrepancy moves from 17:3 to 8:3, much more realistic.

So put tactically the problem with the game is this, any unit travelling across the map only draws a very small fraction of the fire that it would draw in reality from a stationary firing unit for any given distance.

Using the Sherman example if a stationary Sherman is shooting at a traveling Sherman that travels 650m (top speed for one turn) it has enough time, 3.4 minutes, to get 17 shots off at the travelling Sherman but it only gets 3. So the game is emphasising manoeuvre over firepower by basically letting units teleport about the board.
Felix the only change you will notice in game play is that weapon ranges are doubled otherwise the game plays exactly the same. Vehicles travel the same number of hexes per turn, weapons fire the same number of times per turn, some advantages of the change are you don't have to pile units up into one hex as much, blast zones are more sensible, range looks right because it matches the Icon size better, the map matches the Icon size better.
Numbers will vary slightly according to Morale etc but in no way make any difference to the argument I am presenting.

scorpio_rocks October 8th, 2020 10:02 AM

Re: Range doubling
A further thought for you Kiwikkiwik:
The GAME is NOT a simulation... it is an approximation of a tabletop wargame (6mm / 1:300th specifically) where there always has, and always will be, a discrepancy between model (icon) scale and ground scale!

Your "argument" is pretty much irrelevant as the rules / game system is designed around the concept of "emphasising manoeuvre"...

Imp October 8th, 2020 10:30 AM

Re: Range doubling
You make no allowances for real life in your ROF assumptions using the Greyhound example you give & it getting 35 shots a turn.

That means all ammo expended in less than 2 turns if it was possible.

It does not take into account several things such as & sure there are more factors
Time lost acquiring & engaging each new target.
Crew conditions often cramped could possibly manage something close for a short burst say 20 seconds top.
Switching from ready to stored ammo its not all easy to access.
Guns also overheat & have a recoil limit you cannot maintain a high ROF even if it was possible to do so.

About the only guns that could maintain a high ROF would be artillery pieces as the crew is not working in a confined space & can be supplemented more people bringing ammo & discarding casings.
This would obviously destroy the gun in the process so only used in dire circumstances so its not the norm.

Firefights are not continuous you might get 10-15 seconds of rapid fire in a heated engagement from time to time but its not the norm.
So taking things into account the ROF is not off by anything like what you say.

I would in fact say units die quicker in the game than real life on average so shortening the game turn makes it less realistic.
I may be wrong not researched but if you want more realistic I would say slight increase in rate of fire but with reduced accuracy so it takes more shots & time to kill things.
Infantry battles would drag it is a game after all so I am fine with it speeding up the action slightly as it still captures the feel of combat.

In simple terms compare using a weapon to driving a car how often do you put the pedal to the floor & how long do you keep it there? Weapons are similar you push them occasionally & normally for short bursts.

Felix Nephthys October 8th, 2020 12:22 PM

Re: Range doubling

Originally Posted by Imp (Post 848702)
I would in fact say units die quicker in the game than real life on average so shortening the game turn makes it less realistic.
I may be wrong not researched but if you want more realistic I would say slight increase in rate of fire but with reduced accuracy so it takes more shots & time to kill things.
Infantry battles would drag it is a game after all so I am fine with it speeding up the action slightly as it still captures the feel of combat.

Which I think brings us back to the earlier point that this can already be done in Mobhack and through a combination of the settings in the game such as Hitting, Inf./Tank Toughness, and Art. Effectiveness.

Maybe a poll should be taken as to how many players would actually want the changes Kiwi described.

Mobhack October 8th, 2020 01:41 PM

Re: Range doubling
Well, as he has been told before - he can make his own mod and post it in the mods forum and then folks can try it (if any are interested).

But he keeps hammering on with his novel-sized postings almost demanding that we comply and do as he says. That just aint gonna happen.

Kiwikkiwik - if you are so passionate that your view of what the game should be is correct - then go ahead and post your own mod. Otherwise, your posts are a waste of time since they are simply TL;DR. We make the tools that allow you to make a mode - so go ahead and do so, since we wont be doing it for you.

Kiwikkiwik October 24th, 2020 10:48 PM

Re: Range doubling
Hi Scorpio
OK so I have provided two MOD OOBs in MOD forum. As I haven't got a spare year to go through manually and change every weapons range in every OOB in Mobhack I've just changed the weapons that are used in scenarios 199 Neerpelt bridgehead, 185 Agedabia tank duel, 223 tussle at thomashof and 129 crushing the pocket. load the two Modded OOBs, play those scenarios and tell me that you enjoyed the game just as much as before. I suggest playing them in the order given. I can't garentee I got it all right because because making the mods manually is probably just as error prone as importing an excell spreadsheet is. Maybe more so.

Hi Imp those are good points, but I do make allowances for real life in my ROF assumptions. So to clarify matters, Im not saying game ROF should be the same as theoretical ROF, far from it.
What I am saying is doubling ranges without doing -anything- else, automatically
makes hex size 25m and moves turn time from 3.6 to 1.7 minutes.
Makes NO difference to how the game plays except ranges are longer. You will see this if you load the MOD OOBS and play the scenarios.

So Imp before we doubled ranges greyhounds ROF per turn was 6. and a conservative, theoretical ROF is then 35 shots per 3.6 min turn. This is too big a gap between reality and theory.
After the ranges are doubled the greyhounds ROF per turn is -still- 6 and conservativly, theoretically, ROF is now 17 shots per 1.7 min game turn. So game ROF is about right now relative to theoretical ROF.
So the difference between game 6 and theory 17 ROFs takes into account all the issues you raised.

Or, looking at it another way after doubling the range the weapons are still only firing at about one third to one quarter of their theoretical maximum, which I am sure you will agree is about right. Before it was one sixth to one eighth of their theoretical maiximum, too small a fraction.
Infantry battles don't drag. Load the Mods and try.

Felix you can not get any of the benefits of doubling range by changing the various game settings
Range doubling benifits are.
ROF/Movement discrepency fixed.
Firepower is no longer underestimated because units no longer effectively teleport across beaten ground.
You don't have to pile units up into one hex as much to get the same coverage or a desirable different unit weapon range overlap.
Blast zones of small explosive munitions, grenades, mortars etc are more sensible. They now effect a much more believable area of 635 sqm instead of 2500 sqm.
Eases the exaggerated suppression overflow effect of the blast circles into neighbouring hexes because the hexes are smaller and units can be more spread out.
Max visibility lowers from 5 kls to 2.5 klms a much more realistic battle range, especially for identifying friend from foe.
Range matches the Icon size better so game looks better.
Map now matches the Icon size better.
Scenarios unaffected
Heavy hand thrown munitions and pistols now have a more believable 25m range instead of 50.
This tremendous improvement in game granularity leads to all sorts of as yet unknown better definitions.

Hi Mobhack
Im sure there would be a lot of players that would like to have a greatly improved, more realistic game that plays a lot better besides me.
Its funny how you keep telling me to use mobhack but actually its crippled by having had its excell spreadsheet import function removed. If you hadnt done that then I would have changed all the ranges in all the OOBs so people could try any scenario they liked. Without it Im restricted to changing just a few weapons in a couple of MODS. Mobhack functionality is severly restricted by that omission.

Sometimes I wonder if the designers had themselves realised this easy fix to the major game flaw of the ROF/Movement inconsistency it would be lauded as a great improvement to the game, which it is, but because I thought of it, it automatically becomes a bad idea. This is about the best example of cutting of your nose off to spite your face that I have ever seen. Compromise had to be made in the origional game because of those old tiny screens. With todays much bigger screens this long overdue change could and should be implemented, God forbid, even if it was my idea.

Felix Nephthys October 25th, 2020 04:33 AM

Re: Range doubling

I just don't know whether to laugh, cry, or maybe contemplate self-love with a cheese grater.

If there is some silent majority of players who want the range of all weapons in the game doubled then I would think now would be the time for them to speak up.

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