PDA

View Full Version : Playtesting from Italy


Andrechin
12-29-2011, 03:02 PM
Yesterday, within our player group we had some playtesting where we were trying some of the new rules/element interaction (Rome vs. Cartage, Byzantines to test 6Cv, Polish vs. Low countries to see 8Bw and the new Pk/Kn interaction and a few others).

The games went well, we were always in contact after few bounds. The lower scale 100p=40mm instead of 100p=25mm required an adjustement of tactic and view, so the game appeared different than DBA 2.2, but overall quite good. In particular we appreciated the lack of break off chance when the troops have been committed to close combat and the removal of the destroyed if beaten rule when shot on the rear.

Our findings matches what already reported in the DBA mailing list and forum, and had a also a few rule issues.

TERRAIN
New terrain placement was fine and improving the game. It is still a pity the defender can lay a pool table, but since that was possible also in the previous version, this is not a worsening of the rules.

DEPLOYMENT
Combined with the higher elements' speed the deployment becomes more critical. Clearly that requires a change in game strategy.
The narrow deployment region, wider for light troops, and the short time before contact make the edge-of-the-world problem less severe, and attack on an open flank possible even on the 60 cm x 60 cm boards we used. So we think there is not a real need of wider boards.

BLADE-WARBAND INTERACTION
The current pursuit and support rules reduce the effectiveness of blades, but their impact is not dramatic and, in any case, blades were probably too strong before. In particular the blade line tends to reform by itself while pushing back warbands. Se we think they are more or less OK.

DOUBLE ELEMENTS
Different experience with 6Cv and 8Bw:

6Cv mainly were penalized by the difficulty of manoeuvre and of the cost of 2 elements when lost, while, mainly fighting with other mounted, gained little from the +1 in CC against foot;
8Bw instead appeared too strong against foot, fighting at the same level as pikes in the open, and on equal ground even with Bd in bad going, where they hold a wood and could not be attacked successfully.
The main feeling is that a one-size-fits-all rule for double sized elements is not working, and probably special elements need specific rules for each kind of element. For example Swiss 6Bd were Bd particularly effective against knight, while they are instead given more power against other foot in the current draft rules.


PIKES VS. KNIGHTS
In previous rule set Pk could be used aggressively against knights, now it is much more dangerous. We would say now Kn have an edge over Pikes. The main reason is that while in DBA 2.2, it was worthwhile to shorten the line to get rear support at the cost to have overlaps, now, it is not anymore the case, and to shorten the line does not pay off.
Now 3 elements of Sp with 1Ps support are as effective aginst Kn as 6 elements of Pk, but shorten the battle line much less. So now Sp are better against Kn than Pikes.
Maybe a +2 Pk support against Kn (instead of +1) would be a better compromise.

ELEPHANTS
With current combat factors, +5 vs. Foot, +4 vs. mounted makes them more useful as shock troops against an infantry line, while keeping them strong against mounted. Probably it is OK.

RULE QUESTIONS


Psiloi 2nd move: it is required to end in bad going, but there is no requirement about the starting point of the move. Therefore a Ps in bad going is always allowed to make two moves (for 500p total movement). That was quite powerful in usign Ps to block recoiling to elements in or near to bad going. Is that intended?
In one game my opponent managed to outflank me, see the picture below, but according to the rule on page 10 "An element with a flank edge or corner within BW of a battlefield edge counts has ovelapped on that flank", he had to fight at -2. Probably is a harsh penalty for good generalship!
http://www.mi.infn.it/~andreazz/DBA30/FlankingAtEdge.png
With the longer movement it is much easier to block recoiling of enemy elements. Still we assume the following manoeuvre is illegal, but could not find anything written in the rules that prevents it:
http://www.mi.infn.it/~andreazz/DBA30/ClosingTheDoor.png
In the DZ rule it is not clear if move into contact or to line up requires the move to end in contact or fully lined up, or if instead it can be interpreted just as moving towards contact and alignment, even if not directly towards.
In the DZ rule there is no description about the meaning of "no part of another element between" is to be applied. In DBA 2.2 there were endless discussions about if, in the following example, Cv1 is between Kn1 and Cv2. Could that be clarified in the rules?
http://www.mi.infn.it/~andreazz/DBA30/DZ_Between.png
Is there a shooting priority when more then one element is in the DZ, like in the following situation, can Bw1 choose to shoot at either Cv1 and Cv2?
http://www.mi.infn.it/~andreazz/DBA30/DZShooting.png


POSSIBLE IMPROVEMENTS
Below are a couple of suggestion we would like to pose according to our past game experience (so not strictly from playtesting):

1) We think the game will be more balanced if there are requirements on some minimal bad going not too far from the center of the board, just to avoid uninteresting flat pool tables with few bad-going spots at the edges. A requirement similar to the HOTT one could do.

2) Despite the changes Hd have still no more standing power than other troops. In DBA philosophy, it is important any type of element has a function that performs better than the others. In the Hordes' description standing power is their main characteristics, but they have none (they are destroyed if beaten by many common troops and, with the +2 combat factor, easily doubled by most of the others). Now having Hd in the army list is just a handicap. Maybe counting them as expendables when lost or let them flee instead of being destroyed may compensate that.

larryessick
12-29-2011, 03:45 PM
The main feeling is that a one-size-fits-all rule for double sized elements is not working, and probably special elements need specific rules for each kind of element.

Agreed.

As to the rules questions:

1. I think this is an unintended consequence and one that players will soon exploit horribly.

2. It is harsh but it is the rule. I wonder if it is meant to discourage such "good" generalship.

3. The move is entirely legal and predictable given the movement distances so must be intended.

4 & 5. No comment for now.

6. Either is a legitimate target, shoot whichever you prefer.

Andrechin
12-29-2011, 04:07 PM
3. The move is entirely legal and predictable given the movement distances so must be intended.


I asked because in some other posts it was said the optional 1BW recoil for mounted was introduced exactly to prevent heavy infantry to be able to close the door on mounted recoiling. But, in the way both of us read the current written rules it does not :-(

Attilio

larryessick
12-29-2011, 06:14 PM
I asked because in some other posts it was said the optional 1BW recoil for mounted was introduced exactly to prevent heavy infantry to be able to close the door on mounted recoiling. But, in the way both of us read the current written rules it does not :-(

No, it does not. It only works if the slide to line up is not allowed to elements making flank contact.

Clearly the move is too far if measuring only starting to ending points for the furthest front corner movement. But, if the slide is allowed then the move as you illustrated it is entirely legal.

Would be interested in other people's views. I can easily be missing something.

Xavi
12-29-2011, 08:07 PM
(disclaimer: no rules in hand)

Isn't the contact illegal anyway? You are not contacting corner to corner, so it might be that you are making an illegal contact in the first place. Since the contact was illegal, you cannot slide to make it legal.

I agree about your Ps and border of the world readings. I found that (specially the border of the world thing) quite bad.

Xavi

larryessick
12-29-2011, 10:24 PM
Isn't the contact illegal anyway? You are not contacting corner to corner, so it might be that you are making an illegal contact in the first place. Since the contact was illegal, you cannot slide to make it legal.

How is it any different than two elements that are not lined up on one another and one moves to contact? So long as the move ends with legal contact it is allowed.

If you have two elements A and B offset from one another, there is nothing preventing one from moving to contact the other. And the slide is clearly permitted to permit "legal" contact at the end of the move as long as it is no more than half a base width. The distance moved in the slide isn't even counted as part of the move distance.

AAAA



...BBBB

This ends with B moving to contact A as shown below

AAAA
BBBB

I think this is clearly permitted by the rules. And, so is the slide along the flank edge as far as I can tell.

Pillager
12-30-2011, 01:07 AM
re #2: you are probably following the rule correctly as it is written. However, it is written badly.

The intent is to prevent a unit from using proximity to the board edge to protect itself from being overlapped on that side.

<-- board edge on left

...AAAA
...........
BBBBCCCC

There is no room for BBBB to overlap AAAA. The rule intends that AAAA count as overlapped on the left side:

...AAAA
...BBBBCCCC

Above, AAAA counts as overlapped on BOTH sides

..AAAA
..BBBB

Both AAAA and BBBB count as overlapped on the left.


re #3: In DBMM this is allowed and intended. Therefore it is what Phil intends in DBA. You DBA players will have to determine if this negates the intention that mounted to recoil far enough to escape "closing the door" on their flank and if so, how to solve it.

EDIT: In DBMM 2.0 there is a "repulse" combat result for mounted in some circumstances which takes them further away than a recoil.

Xavi
12-30-2011, 04:38 AM
IN a 24" board that rule just plain sucks. It is EASIER to prevent outflanking now (as Andrechin showed clearly) than it was in 2.2, so the original intent is actually subverted and turned around against its original intent (to make securing the end of the line more difficult).

It would have been easier to NOT use this rule and just move to 30" boards.

Xavi

jtstigley
01-11-2012, 11:57 AM
No, it does not. It only works if the slide to line up is not allowed to elements making flank contact.

Clearly the move is too far if measuring only starting to ending points for the furthest front corner movement. But, if the slide is allowed then the move as you illustrated it is entirely legal.

Would be interested in other people's views. I can easily be missing something.
It is not the extra move distance 1" to 40mm to a hundred paces which makes the difference but the free slide after contact. Under 2.2 "legal" contact needed to be made as part of the measured move distance, but now only contact is required.