Does naval categorisation undermine deck philosophy?

Bluecewe
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Does naval categorisation undermine deck philosophy?

Postby Bluecewe » Sat 22 Feb 2014 20:35

The Wargame series has always employed a deck philosophy wherein category specialisation is encouraged. Admittedly, this philosophy existed to a limited degree in European Escalation, however it was embraced and became much more pronounced in AirLand Battle. As more details of the next installment in the series, Red Dragon, are released to the public, Eugen Systems does not appear to have any desire to deviate from the deck philosophy they have employed thus far, except in one crucial aspect - the introduction of naval units.

According to the Eugen Systems developer blog, the naval category in Red Dragon is not affected by the conventional activation point limit. This means that regardless of the category specialisation of a deck - whether that may be tank-centric, infantry-centric, aircraft-centric, or any other specialisation - the size of any deck's naval contingent is the same as any other deck. As the blog post itself states, the rationale behind this design decision is that not all maps will facilitate naval units, and as a result, if the naval category were limited by conventional activation points, a naval-centric deck would be gravely lacking in effective capabilities on a map which does not facilitate any naval units.

The rationale is superficially understandable, but becomes difficult to justify recognising the reality of Wargame. The same argument could be made for all categories. To state the obvious, all maps are different - as a result, players must build multiple decks to best respond to the differing terrain and challenges faced in individual maps. Doubtless, it is completely within the realms of possibility to build a deck which will perform effectively in every map. However, a map-specific deck will prove more effective in its intended map than a map-agnostic deck. However, category specialisation has been encouraged because, amongst other benefits, it forces players to rely upon their teammates, and prevents certain units from becoming uniformly employed in virtually every deck. Just as many players build different decks for different types of maps in AirLand Battle, it would not be a radically different experience for players if they were encouraged to build different decks for those maps which allow naval units, and those which do not.

From a theoretical perspective, the design decision to effectively exclude the naval category from the traditional process of deck specialization appears likely to encourage the very things which deck specialisation for the eight other categories seeks to eschew. It would appear that, under the current arrangement, an environment may be established in which uniform employment of particular units and particular deck structures becomes likely in the space of naval warfare. Unlike with the other eight categories where it is possible to essentially opt out of certain playstyles and unit categories, in the space of naval warfare it would appear as though it is not possible to opt out. This would be beneficial to effective naval commanders and teams with strong naval organisation, but pernicious to commanders who would prefer to avoid naval warfare and teams which do not contain members who are all equally enthusiastic and skilled in the space of naval warfare.

Ultimately, does the separation of the naval category from the eight other categories in terms of the conventional activation point limit not undermine the deck philosophy, wherein category specialisation is encouraged, employed by Eugen Systems up to this point?

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Mr0Buggy
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Re: Does naval categorisation undermine deck philosophy?

Postby Mr0Buggy » Sat 22 Feb 2014 21:08

Bluecewe wrote:Words


It's too early to say before CBT is out, but the way I see it you should treat naval part of the deck as mini subdeck, which you can specialize. While, you have all slots for free, you decide to what use you can put them. Will it be a ship and plane focused subdeck to blitz it out with other enemy fleets or will it be just a subduck with a card or two of ships for escort and you will focus it on rapidly deployable Marines troops that will conduct landings behind enemy lines or will it be a subdeck focused on supporting the ground operations with lotsa long range naval guns. Just because it's all free, doesn't mean you can't customize the Naval elements to fit rest of your deck and playstyle.

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Re: Does naval categorisation undermine deck philosophy?

Postby leroy11 » Sat 22 Feb 2014 22:29

One of the big issues with ALB as far as I cant tell is that some people didnt actually want to play the "air" part of ALB. They didnt want to take much AA, didnt want to use a CAP, didnt want to use up deck slots with it either.

The result was a constant steam of complaints that could have easily been cured if the players simply took say a card of interceptors or a card of manpads or SPAAG as backup

Now EVERYTHING naval is in naval. Planes arent in planes, helis arent in helis, marines arent in marines. There all in naval.

You HAVE to play naval.

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Re: Does naval categorisation undermine deck philosophy?

Postby TankHunter » Sat 22 Feb 2014 22:40

leroy11 wrote:One of the big issues with ALB as far as I cant tell is that some people didnt actually want to play the "air" part of ALB. They didnt want to take much AA, didnt want to use a CAP, didnt want to use up deck slots with it either.

The result was a constant steam of complaints that could have easily been cured if the players simply took say a card of interceptors or a card of manpads or SPAAG as backup

Now EVERYTHING naval is in naval. Planes arent in planes, helis arent in helis, marines arent in marines. There all in naval.

You HAVE to play naval.


You can still take Marines in a land deck. If you want them in a landing craft, than yeah, take them in Naval category, but they're still available under INF.
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Re: Does naval categorisation undermine deck philosophy?

Postby orcbuster » Sat 22 Feb 2014 22:45

I think the current naval deck system very much undermines the concept of national and coalition decks.

Would like to see option to restrict with added national/coalition bonuses.

The current system is too much like the EE system. A real kick in the teeth to national deck players.
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Re: Does naval categorisation undermine deck philosophy?

Postby D-M » Sat 22 Feb 2014 22:55

Personnally the only thing I fear is that landing troops/VHC would just a way to get units you wouldn't have access otherwise ( national/type deck). Like getting (I don't know) Abrams when you are playing a French marine deck.
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Re: Does naval categorisation undermine deck philosophy?

Postby Mr0Buggy » Sat 22 Feb 2014 23:02

D-M wrote:Personnally the only thing I fear is that landing troops/VHC would just a way to get units you wouldn't have access otherwise ( national/type deck). Like getting (I don't know) Abrams when you are playing a French marine deck.


I think MM said you can only land your own nation's/coalition's troops, but I can't find it atm.

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Re: Does naval categorisation undermine deck philosophy?

Postby T80U = tankbankai » Sat 22 Feb 2014 23:05

Mr0Buggy wrote:
D-M wrote:Personnally the only thing I fear is that landing troops/VHC would just a way to get units you wouldn't have access otherwise ( national/type deck). Like getting (I don't know) Abrams when you are playing a French marine deck.


I think MM said you can only land your own nation's/coalition's troops, but I can't find it atm.


I know he said marine troops such as RIMa were nation/ coalition exclusive and I think he said other nations vehicles and infantry can come from any nation like warships.
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Re: Does naval categorisation undermine deck philosophy?

Postby QUAD » Sat 22 Feb 2014 23:07

Certain deck specialization a should affect the navy. Like better corvettes in an airborne deck.
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Re: Does naval categorisation undermine deck philosophy?

Postby Carnage1138 » Sat 22 Feb 2014 23:12

leroy11 wrote:One of the big issues with ALB as far as I cant tell is that some people didnt actually want to play the "air" part of ALB. They didnt want to take much AA, didnt want to use a CAP, didnt want to use up deck slots with it either.

The result was a constant steam of complaints that could have easily been cured if the players simply took say a card of interceptors or a card of manpads or SPAAG as backup

Now EVERYTHING naval is in naval. Planes arent in planes, helis arent in helis, marines arent in marines. There all in naval.

You HAVE to play naval.


You can always have a Marines only deck.

IIRC I think it was said that the only helis and planes that would only be exclusively Naval are ASW helis and planes. Like you can have a Hellfire-armed Seahawk in your Land Deck but the Penguin-carrying Seahawk would be only available in your Naval deck. Carrier-only based aircraft like the MiG-29K are also limited to the Naval deck I think.
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