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john meunier
01-17-2012, 11:41 PM
From the Yahoo group:


I thought it would be useful to explain the reasons for some of the changes in
3.0.

The most obvious difference with 3.0 is measuring in multiples of base widths.
There are two reasons:

The first is that it is far more convenient in practise. All testers quickly got
used to it and preferred it (even those currently wishing to kill 2.2). All our
other rule sets have already routinely used it for years.

The second is that in 2.2 it is far too easy to prevent heavy infantry advancing
into combat. Especially if you were using the bigger playing areas often found
in the US, it was possible for a player opposed by an army mainly of other foot
to stop that foot getting into frontal contact until late in a game, simply by
deploying all their vulnerable troops near the rear edge of the board. The
possibility of this was denied by some, but try it for yourself. I had it done
to me at Historicon 3 years back, even on the standard 24” board, when I was
using an Athenian hoplite army in honour of an Athens-based figure manufacturer
who had sent it to me just before he died. By having 100p = 1 base width instead
of 1”, that becomes much less of a problem, especially when as now in 3.0
deployment zone is measured back from the centre line instead of forward from
the board edge.

There were initially complaints that the movement margin of cavalry over heavy
foot had been diminished proportionately. This was cured by increasing the
cavalry move to 400p, the same as light horse. Light horse now have the same
move as cavalry, but since they keep the ability to make extra moves still have
a manoeuvring advantage over them. This actually improves realism, since ponies
are not faster than horses in real life; longer legs make the horse faster, and
the effect of the weight of a part armoured rider on a horse is about the same
as that of a light rider on a pony. Both still have an advantage in speed over
heavily armoured riders and horses we class as knights.

Another problem in getting into contact was the use by players of tricks such as
kinked lines to prevent an opponent making contact. Our basic principle now
became that troops that would make contact in real life must be able to do so in
the game. There had been a similar problem in DBM which we cured in DBMM. Rules
on conforming were changed to achieve this. The aim was that the player using
such tricks should be disadvantaged, not the player he was doing it to. Players
that previously used those tricks are likely to complain. Sympathise with them
if you will...

Another 2.2 ploy was for the defender to place terrain to set up a Maginot line
across the whole board. This is hindered in 3.0 by making terrain positioning
random. In real life, a general has to accept the terrain nature gives him and
make the best use of it he can. The defender still gets to choose all the
features, but dice decides in which quarter of the table he has to place each of
them. Since a dice has 6 faces and there are only 4 quarters, he may throw a 6
and get to choose the quarter, or a 5 and have the choose it. If the defender
chooses only maximum sized features, it is quite likely that if more than 1
lands in the same quarter, 1 will be impossible to place and forfeited. We have
also now limited very small pieces to 1. No existing piece is made obsolete, but
you can only have 1 postage stamp at a time.

It is also more difficult to reduce the combat area with rivers down the edge.
You also cannot trust a river to be an obstacle.

Another 3.0 feature to prevent Maginot lines is not allowing any element to
deploy near the side edges and the outermost part of the deployment area to be
deployed in only by cavalry and light troops. This encourages historical
deployments with the cavalry on the flanks. A player can move out to the edge
later if he wishes, but cannot safely rest a flank against it, because any
element within a base width of the edge counts as automatically overlapped on
that side.

Macbeth
01-18-2012, 12:26 AM
Actually all quite logical arguments except the following

The most obvious difference with 3.0 is measuring in multiples of base widths.
There are two reasons:

The first is that it is far more convenient in practise. All testers quickly got
used to it and preferred it (even those currently wishing to kill 2.2). All our
other rule sets have already routinely used it for years.


Even in metric saturated Australia it is easy to obtain 6" rulers still with the inches marked - 1 = 100p and so on up to 6 = 600p

Firstly we need to use a longer ruler as 6" just won't cut it (stop s******ing the lot of you :D ;) )

4BW = 400p now let me see 4 X 40 = 160 now lets find 160 on the ruler - that side of the ruler has 30 slots more closely set together - slighly harder to find than the inches on the other side.

I am prepared to admit that this is a very small inconvenience and once we have all got out the stanley knives and the cardstock and created our own DBA specific rulers then the problem is solved.

The difference in convenience is small but it swings the way of the older 1" = 100p

This let me assure you is coming from someone that wants 3.0 to succeed

As for the incident of avoiding contact by deploying on the baseline - it was done how many times?? - the plural of anecdote is not evidence.

Cheers

Pillager
01-18-2012, 01:24 AM
Just superglue some empty bases together edge to edge.

Hannibal Ad Portas
01-18-2012, 01:30 AM
I have played hundreds and hundreds of DBA games. I played in the East conventions, Origins, Enfilade, Kublacon, online and in dozens of local tournaments. I have seen very few corner sitters or back line sitters. It might make the game a little more tedious and challenging, but the rules as is provided the necessary tools to win in those situations. Also, not winning is not the end of the world. The fully kinked line was something I only saw once. A simple fix could have been made to solve that problem...the 3.0 fix is a cluster.....

Pillager
01-18-2012, 01:41 AM
Let's not forget to include the prequels to the message quoted in the first post:


http://games.groups.yahoo.com/group/DBA/message/30463


Sun Jan 15, 2012 3:44 am

From: Phil Barker
Sent: Sunday, January 15, 2012 9:41 AM
To: Sue Laflin-Barker
Subject: Message for Fanaticus and the yahoo group

Please forward this.

Permission for a free download of a single copy of 2.2 from our website does not
permit duplication, distribution, paraphrasing or modification of those rules,
whether free or for profit. If you are minded to do any of these things, read
the paragraph at the bottom of the title page, and consult your lawyer now, not
after the fact. It will be cheaper.

We do not seek to stop people playing with their existing set of 2.2. The
statement that DBA 3.0 is a new set of rules and that we are not developing 2.2
is ridiculous. DBA 3.0 is that development. It is 2.2 updated with changes
requested by players and thoroughly tested by an experienced and talented
international panel. Their conclusion is that it is simpler and gives a much
better game. Many suggestions were rejected because they did not work. It is
quite hard to convince some people that they are not good rule writers.

Any advice published by 3rd parties on interpreting our rules such as the Wadbag
guide is advice. It is sometimes wrong and invariably over-prolix.

The most disturbing feature is the stated intention to pressure competition
organisers not to allow DBA 3.0. DBM supporters stopped DBMM in the US by
similarly strong-arming competition organisers . The result was that DBM died
anyway, and the Americas are the only place in the world where DBMM (the best
rule set I have ever written) is not widely played. If DBA does not evolve, it
will also die.

The suggested 2.2+, besides being in breach of copyright, would probably be 2.2
with its present faults maintained and others added by a small clique to be
foisted willy nilly on competition players . My fellow directors do not wish me
to comment on the ethics of breach of trust.

Phil Barker

Mon Jan 16, 2012 5:28 am
Re: [DBA] Re: Fw: Message for Fanaticus and the yahoo group

I am hardly indifferent to the DBA community. I have always played it more
than any other set and Sue plays nothing else. I have just spent 2 years of
my life producing a new version! Up to now I have not been on the DBA yahoo
group because Sue monitors it for me. I believe that a set of rules should
satisfy the requirements of all gamers; and resisted agitation by some
competition gamers to dumb the rules down. My own belief is that campaign
gaming is the highest form; but that may be because I am far more successful
in campaigns than in individual battles. The 12 members of the test group
were all bar two DBA players. Most, but not all also played DBMM. These were
selected because during DBMM testing they proved that they could think and
analyse, were prepared to sit down and play a huge number of test games
without being upset when something changed and did not excessively love the
sound of their own voices or getting their own way. Decisions on rule
changes were reached by consensus.

Phil

Mon Jan 16, 2012 4:49 am
Re: [DBA] Fw: Message for Fanaticus and the yahoo group

DBM is dead, killed by 3.1, and casts no shadow. DBMM is used in an
increasing number of competitions and is making inroads into FOG, its only
real competitor. It is MY opinion that it is the best set of rules I have
ever written. DBA is simpler but much less accurate - for example a
madly-charging Dacian unarmoured falx wielder is treated exactly the same in
all terrain as a knight in full plate lumbering slowly forward. They are
both just Blade.

Phil

Sea Weathered Aketons
01-18-2012, 01:48 AM
In all my years of playing DBA, not once have I encountered the kinked lines he describes. I've never had a problem getting my hoplites into contact (except once against a player who used Ps in relays to slow my advance) since I always moved as rapidly as possible. Players who divided their forces by keeping elements back invited destruction.

SWA

Ivan
01-18-2012, 03:35 AM
This actually improves realism, since ponies are not faster than horses in real life; longer legs make the horse faster, and the effect of the weight of a part armoured rider on a horse is about the same as that of a light rider on a pony.

One would think that the Mongols and Cossacks (to name but two) would wholeheartedly disagree with this with some fervor. :D

More accurately, it is the training, formations used and style of warfare that dictate the overall speed of the above - unless it is Shetland Ponies that are being referred to! :silly Otherwise, it is like saying that two Napoleonic 6 lbrs are equal to one 12 lbr! :rolleyes

snowcat
01-18-2012, 03:49 AM
One would think that the Mongols and Cossacks (to name but two) would wholeheartedly disagree with this with some fervor. :D



I doubt it. They used what was available to them in large numbers: small hardy horses and ponies; the Mongol pony (like the Hunnic pony before it) being especially hardy (eg. able to forage through snow) and suited to long range campaigns. Larger, faster horses have greater requirements to maintain optimum health and performance.

Re: the Mongol/Cossack small horses & ponies...
Were they the fastest horses around? Certainly not.
Were they the fastest horses available in large numbers that suited their purposes best? Yes.

Pillager
01-18-2012, 04:34 AM
Pony breeding discussion is smoke & mirrors.

Does making LH and CAV have the same move rate when near the enemy cause a significant problem with getting historic results?

snowcat
01-18-2012, 04:56 AM
Pony breeding discussion is smoke & mirrors.

Does making LH and CAV have the same move rate when near the enemy cause a significant problem with getting historic results?

Pony breeding discussion is not smoke and mirrors - it's about understanding some basic principles of horse types in question that relate directly to the Cv/LH movement issue being raised.

As for your question, I think it's a very fair one.

Martyn
01-18-2012, 05:19 AM
From the Yahoo group:


I thought it would be useful to explain the reasons for some of the changes in
3.0.

Snip

The second is that in 2.2 it is far too easy to prevent heavy infantry advancing into combat. Especially if you were using the bigger playing areas often found in the US, it was possible for a player opposed by an army mainly of other foot to stop that foot getting into frontal contact until late in a game, simply by deploying all their vulnerable troops near the rear edge of the board. The possibility of this was denied by some, but try it for yourself. I had it done to me at Historicon 3 years back, even on the standard 24” board, when I was using an Athenian hoplite army in honour of an Athens-based figure manufacturer who had sent it to me just before he died. By having 100p = 1 base width instead of 1”, that becomes much less of a problem, especially when as now in 3.0 deployment zone is measured back from the centre line instead of forward from the board edge.

Snip


This is the part that troubles me. If Phil feels that there is a problem with base line huggers or corner sitters then introducing a mechanism which reduces the effect of such play is a valid argument (whether the original supposition is correct is another story).

However Phil has introduced two measures to deal with this, increase movement distances and allow closer deployment. Either of these would go along way to resolve his concern but both seems to be over kill and is creating, what I feel, is the greatest change in the character of DBA.

As a comparative exercise the number of moves for Hvy Inf to get from deployment to a base line hugger would be;
v2 9 moves
v3 5 moves
v3 setup/v2 movement 7 moves
v2 setup/v3 movement 6 moves.

So the either/or solution introduces a difference, but the combined affect makes a big difference. To a lot of people this is clearly a step (or one of the steps) too far.

Richard Lee
01-18-2012, 05:34 AM
I have only rarely experienced drawn games in a competition, in my admittedly limited experience. I can't recall any base-line huggers. The draw that I remember was due to spear in two ranks versus spear in two ranks on a limited frontage between two bits of bad going.

Bounds in DBA don't usually take long unless there is either a lot of combat or need to refer to, and read in detail, the rules.

In non-competition games, the main cause of slow play that I have experienced has been an opponent taking extremely an long time to make their moves. This was related to health issues.

Ivan
01-18-2012, 06:23 AM
I doubt it. They used what was available to them in large numbers: small hardy horses and ponies; the Mongol pony (like the Hunnic pony before it) being especially hardy (eg. able to forage through snow) and suited to long range campaigns. Larger, faster horses have greater requirements to maintain optimum health and performance.

Re: the Mongol/Cossack small horses & ponies...
Were they the fastest horses around? Certainly not.
Were they the fastest horses available in large numbers that suited their purposes best? Yes.


It is strongly suggested you study further and gain understanding (not just a knowing of information). Also, read the second paragraph - it may be the beginning of enlightenment!:D

snowcat
01-18-2012, 06:40 AM
I suggest you explain yourself without condescension.

prich
01-18-2012, 11:45 AM
To solve a very rare problem (corner sitters happened around 0.00000001% of the games Ive seen in my entire life as DBA player), Phil has changed the 2 big aspects of the game: greater movement and closer deployment.
That kills one of the funniest part of the DBA games, the "pre combat movements"
Now, people is deploying as far as they can from the enemy (corner sitting) to, at least, have 2 or 3 turns of "pre combat movements"

Is there any need to finish the games after 3-4 rounds?
was people asking for faster games?

I think is like killing flies with artillery fire.

Ivan
01-18-2012, 10:07 PM
I suggest you explain yourself without condescension.

My remarks were very clear. I suggest you read all of them again, in context. Perhaps if you overlook the emoticons, you won't feel as if you were spoken to in a condescending manner.

snowcat
01-18-2012, 10:10 PM
It wasn't the emoticon that was condescending - it was being told to study harder and gain the ability to 'understand'.

snowcat
01-18-2012, 10:21 PM
I believe I may have taken your initial statement out of context, misinterpreting what you said as defending Mongol/Cossack horseflesh as being as fast as taller horses bred for power and speed. It seems clear to me now that you didn't mean this, and that your second paragraph effectively stated that comparisons between natural abilities of horse breeds are secondary to how they are used on the battlefield and campaign. Hopefully I have your meaning right now. In which case, my mistake first time around and I apologise for jumping the gun.

larryessick
01-18-2012, 10:40 PM
It wasn't the emoticon that was condescending - it was being told to study harder and gain the ability to 'understand'.

I believe I may have taken your initial statement out of context, misinterpreting what you said as defending Mongol/Cossack horseflesh as being as fast as taller horses bred for power and speed. It seems clear to me now that you didn't mean this, and that your second paragraph effectively stated that comparisons between natural abilities of horse breeds are secondary to how they are used on the battlefield and campaign. Hopefully I have your meaning right now. In which case, my mistake first time around and I apologise for jumping the gun.

:rotfl

Pretty funny stuff.

snowcat
01-18-2012, 10:44 PM
Happy to entertain you Larry. I'll be here all week!

Now that'll be $50.

:p

PS At least I apologised, eh?

larryessick
01-18-2012, 10:56 PM
PS At least I apologised, eh?

For which you are to be commended. :up

Now on to other things.

As a comparative exercise the number of moves for Hvy Inf to get from deployment to a base line hugger would be;
v2 9 moves
v3 5 moves
v3 setup/v2 movement 7 moves
v2 setup/v3 movement 6 moves.

This is a good analysis. From the number of moves to forced contact to definitive results is how many additional bounds?

I think that is a relevant question as it is not enough simply to get there, it is also necessary to finish the battle.

Next, your analysis does not include intentional efforts to delay the advance does it? I am confident that an average player probably cannot carry on a delay for very long in most cases. But what of those who are more skillful? How long can such a delay be maintained?

Finally, how many turns can two average players expect to get in a 50-60 minute game? My distinct impression is that this is about the length of time allotted to games in most tournaments.

Crunching all of those numbers together are you still convinced that both changes are not needed?

Ivan
01-18-2012, 11:10 PM
Happy to entertain you Larry. I'll be here all week!

Now that'll be $50.

:p

PS At least I apologised, eh?


Ah! But did you apologize with nothing crossed, whilst dancing a jig AND wearing a funny hat???:V

Pillager
01-19-2012, 05:52 AM
Pony breeding discussion is not smoke and mirrors - it's about understanding some basic principles of horse types in question that relate directly to the Cv/LH movement issue being raised.



But shouldn't it be discussed by people qualified by their knowledge of horses on more than a theoretical basis. Isn't Phil certified on a high level as a judge in horse competitions?

I also note that making Cv move 4 is an _increase_ from their rate of 3 in DBMM. So you could just as well ask why Cv goes relatively faster than HI in DBA3.0.

EDIT: I am interpreting the complaint as being that LH should go even faster, not that Cv should be reduced.

snowcat
01-19-2012, 06:30 AM
Ah! But did you apologize with nothing crossed, whilst dancing a jig AND wearing a funny hat???:V

Well, seeing as you asked - there might have been a little green suit, a pair of pointed shoes, a shillelagh and a tricorne hat! ;)

Martyn
01-19-2012, 02:45 PM
This is a good analysis.
Thank you :up

My initial analysis was done to compare the differences in the various options using Hvy Inf as a guinea pig I dont claim it covers any realistic game play.

Phils original comment was that the vulnerable elements may be hidden at the back, but in game terms that does raise the question of what is happening to the non-vulnerable elements who are now outnumbered.

From the number of moves to forced contact to definitive results is how many additional bounds?

I think that is a relevant question as it is not enough simply to get there, it is also necessary to finish the battle.
Definitive results depends on too many variables, chiefly the composition of the two armies and the terrain layout, to be easily and simply assessed (the analysis is only of Hvy Inf, mounted would have a total different impact) and would also depend on the approach of the defensive player, a passive defence is easier to overcome than an active defence.

Next, your analysis does not include intentional efforts to delay the advance does it? I am confident that an average player probably cannot carry on a delay for very long in most cases. But what of those who are more skillful? How long can such a delay be maintained?
Intentional efforts to delay are part of the game, an active defence is more effective and the better the player the more effective such tactics may be, or conversely the more able they are at countering such tactics, but isnt that exactly what we should be striving for, the better player is more successful. Whether you use delaying tactics on the whole battlefield as a general effort to avoid seriously engaging, or only part to hold one flank whilst concentrating on the other, it is all part of the challenge of the game which each player has to overcome. To try and reduce the effectiveness by contrived rule adjustments will create a far more inferior rule set.

Finally, how many turns can two average players expect to get in a 50-60 minute game? My distinct impression is that this is about the length of time allotted to games in most tournaments.
If there is a situation where one player is passive baseline hugging then the initial moves will go quite quickly as the active player marches unopposed across the board, the delay comes when there are difficult decisions to be made when you get near or at contact. The biggest concern is slow play rather than effective use of tactics.
Crunching all of those numbers together are you still convinced that both changes are not needed?

I think that this is a solution to a problem that does not exist. I do not think that the increased movement rates improve the game, and do feel that they are detrimental to the feel of the game, this adds to the concern that v3 is a different game when compared to v2.2. Both have their merits and I have enjoyed my games of v3 I just feel that I would enjoy it more without the increased movement.

larryessick
01-19-2012, 03:01 PM
Thank you :up

You are welcome.

I think that this is a solution to a problem that does not exist.

Most probably true to a large degree. I would amend it to "rarely" rather than "does not" exist. The difference is more than a quibble.

It also avoids the real issue, which isn't whether we think it does or does not exist -- or the frequency at which it occurs -- but whether the author does. And, if the author does isn't it reasonable for him to include mechanisms to mitigate what he sees as a problem?

My general observation from limited test play is that games in 3.0 play faster as a result of the advance of the deployment line and the movement distance changes. I have a concern that games can play too quickly -- something others had been reporting.

My son, who has limited experience with 2.2 (meaning, he doesn't really remember playing it except in a very vague way) had no problems with the speed of play. He's 14.

This may be instructive as there is a legitimate concern regarding how to grab the attention of the young for what is often an old man's game.

But, like the observation of how often players sit on the back line, this is just speculative to some degree and mostly irrelevant. And, it is worth noting that he and I played a very long and drawn out game lasting well beyond an hour in one of the test games (reported in other parts of the forum).

I understand your point, I think you grasp mine as well. If best case is 9 moves to contact and common experience is anything approaching 9 moves to determine a winner, it is in fact very plausible to avoid a negative decision by employing such tactics. If Phil perceives this a potential problem then his solution avoids that by both of our experiences.

Ivan
01-20-2012, 09:42 PM
Well, seeing as you asked - there might have been a little green suit, a pair of pointed shoes, a shillelagh and a tricorne hat! ;)

:rotfl :2up