Transports

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George Geczy
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#1 Post by George Geczy » Jul 02 2002

In another thread on the forum I had posted:

"We recently made the decision to require real cargo ships and planes to carry units by sea or air (versus a global 'transport capacity' rating or similar shortcut). So if you want to move a tank battalion from Australia to New Zealand, you'll need transport ships. By default the AI will handle the transport fleet (queue up requests and dispatch the transport ships or planes to fill the requests), but they could also be micro-managed if a player so desired. "

This design decision was made after a fair bit of discussion and debate. Interestingly enough, I've just read that the upcoming Brian Reynolds game 'Rise of Nations' (which is more of an Age-of-Empires design style) has chosen the opposite, and is instead treating transports as an 'attachment' to units - ie, move to the water, they will get into their own boats, go where they need to, and get out on the other side.

Some programs such as the original Panzer General would go halfway and use 'transport points' - move to an air or sea port, and if you have enough unused points then you can embark.

Both of these greatly simply the issue of transport - but is that a good thing, or a bad thing?

I'd like to hear what you think about the different options for transport units.

-- George.
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#2 Post by 3iff » Jul 02 2002

In Civilisation, the transport vessels are required (and need to be in the right place (something I always get wrong!). I think I would prefer having real ships for transport - which leads to a question.

Are ships handled individually or can they be combined into fleets? If the latter, then it would be possible to assign a few destroyers and transport ships into one fleet and use them as one 'unit' with a transport capacity. If this fleet suffered losses then losses would also be recorded on the units carried. Of course, the fleet could be split up as desired at any time...

unless you are intending to handle fleets in an entirely different way...

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#3 Post by harley9699 » Jul 02 2002

Definitely have seperate transport vessels. Cleaner than 'points' systems. It's not that difficult to keep track of even whole fleets. Of course you'll want to (have the ability to) protect them as well. I prefer the micro-management...down to the ship level.

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#4 Post by tkobo » Jul 02 2002

Definately need transports represented as units.
Transporting large amounts of troops should be risky.

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#5 Post by Balthagor » Jul 02 2002

As far as naval formations, you will be able to assign trasnport ships to a mixed unit Regiment or Division. The Regiment or Division can be given one order for the hole group. So far most of this is on paper so I can't say how it will actually work, but we are working to have "fleets" that can be given broad level orders and carry them out while protecting supply and transport units.

As far as losses to units being transported if the ship is hit, that will need to be decided at a later stage.
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#6 Post by Reddemon » Jul 03 2002

Transport unit I would have to go with. that makes the game a whole lot more realistic then just a point system. It would bring more depth to the strategy to the game would also be great to sink the enemy transport ship that is full of tanks or troops :grin:

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#7 Post by harley9699 » Jul 03 2002

Agree with the two above. Sadistic=Realistic when it comes to transports :smile: Plus, it works both ways. I'm sure the enemies will froth at the prospect of strafing/bombing/cannon-ing/battleship-ing (just make 'em up as I go :smile:) my convoy or even single xport, hoping for maximum sinkage. Just 'damage' will interesting to see as well. Few troops wounded or killed? Smaller units disabled or reduced to salvage parts? Turret blown off? Will be intriguing.
Plus, except for something like Steel Panthers, most games shy away from land xport. How about some trucks? Jeeps?Halftracks? Australia was mentioned in the first post: 120' semis loaded down for the massive open roads there?

<font size=-1>[ This Message was edited by: harley9699 on 2002-07-03 09:03 ]</font>

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George Geczy
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#8 Post by George Geczy » Jul 03 2002

Well, that consensus seems to be forming around transport units, and that was certainly what our own discussions thought would work best.

As far as land transport goes, we have moved away from ground transportation units, though I actually forget what we decided upon for leg-movement infantry (ie paratroops)... it takes a LONG time to walk across Australia!

We do include railways as well, but have decided to use them only to help with supply routes, and not to allow rail-transport of units. The micro-management involved could be a killer if we did.

We do allow land units to be transported by sea or sometimes air, including helicopter lifts of light infantry units etc. We also allow supplies to be delivered by air units.

-- George.

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#9 Post by Empier4552 » Jul 03 2002

What about land transport? MIght not have rails but ex- Trucks and jeeps could sure as hell speed up the process.

By the way you said the handling of units being transported would be AI managed or micro if it was AI managed I Just want to make sure you'd still see the ships moving along happily on the water right? ANd perhaps the user could get a small pop up alert telling them a troop regiment is being transported to so and so...otherwise they might forget about the troops!

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#10 Post by harley9699 » Jul 04 2002

On 2002-07-03 18:13, Empier4552 wrote:
What about land transport? MIght not have rails but ex- Trucks and jeeps could sure as hell speed up the process.

By the way you said the handling of units being transported would be AI managed or micro if it was AI managed I Just want to make sure you'd still see the ships moving along happily on the water right? ANd perhaps the user could get a small pop up alert telling them a troop regiment is being transported to so and so...otherwise they might forget about the troops!
Excellent. Tons of times, in a lot of games, I've either been:
1) "Now, where did those xport ships go?" and/or 2) "Man! I wish I would have known 4 turns ago that xport was sitting there waiting to offload!" :smile: Of course, I've also seen it where the hex you send the ship to is actually a land/coastal hex so the troops automatically unload when they get there.
Trucks, halftracks, jeeps are gooood.
To me it is VERY important to actually see (esp. sea based) the xport units as well.

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#11 Post by Hellfish6 » Jul 05 2002

Will certain ships, like the US Tarawa or Wasp classes be able to carry troops? Normally, one of these ships and two other ships (usually LSDs - Landing Ships, Dock) will transport a Marine battalion. I know the Russian Ivan Rogov class is also supposed to be able to carry a battalion, as is the British Ocean-class.

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#12 Post by 3iff » Jul 05 2002

We do allow land units to be transported by sea or sometimes air, including helicopter lifts of light infantry units etc. We also allow supplies to be delivered by air units.
Could infantry/non self propelled artillery and similar stuff have inherent transport incorporated with them? Infantry in combat mode move on foot. Infantry in transport mode move via their own trucks/jeeps whatever. If attacked in transport mode, they are more vulnerable to attack.

They could still be transported by aircraft if desired (would be quicker).

What do you think??

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#13 Post by George Geczy » Jul 07 2002

Regarding sea transport units, they definitely appear on the map - nice targets for the enemy, of course. We've also planned for Landing craft (ie transports that don't need to unload at a Sea Port).

With regard to infantry and vehicles, we've generally created infantry battalions as either 'with vehicles' or 'without'. There is no load/unload, that is assumed automatic on the part of the unit; some units are equipped with HMMWV, some with Bradleys, some with BMPs, etc. There's a snapshot of some of the units on the SR2010 web site at:
http://www.supremeruler2010.com/srmil_equipment_inf.htm

Though apparently we have discussed allowing leg units to be carried by land transports (ie supply trucks), though that has not been implemented yet.

-- George.

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