1914 project

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way2co0l
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1914 project

#1 Post by way2co0l » Jul 05 2018

So, even my brief time in my AARs has made a few issues clear to me and I'm going to be starting up this simple as of yet unnamed mod project with the intent to try to fix what I can. I'm not an experienced modder so will need to do quite a bit of research to figure out what I can change and how, so my initial goals are going to be rather modest and may change over time.

My first effort here will be to increase the starting army sizes of all the major powers to more closely reflect their actual starting forces. At this point, I'm not aiming for complete accuracy for army numbers or compositions and will instead just be multiplying starting forces by a factor of 10 to see what results it has on gameplay. This will coincide with minor tweaks to things like military goods and inputs to try to ensure that the economy will be able to support these larger forces in actual combat.

I'm posting this now to allow for discussion and will be providing the simple mod once I've put it together in case anyone would like to test it out and share results. I want to start simple right now and just see where it goes, but ideally I would like to see a much more exciting 1914 start game option. I figure larger armies is a good place to start.

Current questions to look into:

[*]Whether a nation's military initiatives can be set through mods, as I believe this is responsible for many nations not deploying their forces.
[*]Whether a nation's theater or battle zone settings can be set through mods as I'm hoping this will be an option to force the AI to deploy garrisons which they otherwise don't do to my satisfaction.
[*]Find out exactly how to maximize the potential from hotspots, and see if further hotspots can be created/removed through event conditions.

Update for Version 0.3.1

I feel like this update is a significant step in the direction I ultimately want to take it. The general flow of the war should be seriously altered. A lot of improvements and general balancing still needs to be done, plus I need to start adding human checks in so that I'm not forcing these things on the player, but I'm beginning to implement several of the features I had been hoping to and will continue to refine them as I go. It's only going to get better. :D This release has only seen light testing so far, but as always I'm releasing it here in the event anyone else would like to test themselves. Please understand that this is my very first attempt at creating a mod, so please be gentle in the event that I screwed something up along the way. I'm learning and intend to keep improving on this project as I go. Any feedback is appreciated! :)

Changelog:

Version 0.3.1 - Over 70 new events now in game to better direct the flow of the war.
[*]All 9 impacted powers now have garrisons maxed at game start.
[*]Force deployments have been delayed closer to real life mobilization dates to slow down the initial action. Some fudging is done to get better results. Future balancing can alleviate this need.
[*]AI initiative settings have been adjusted to match the above change.
[*]Theater and battlezone adjustments to try to get better results from UK and German naval conflicts.
[*]Italy now severs its alliance with the Central Powers when it declares its neutrality in the war.
[*]Delayed Ottoman alliance with the Central Powers until right before it declares war on Russia to prevent it from sending forces to fight in Europe. Was a rough edit so some event texts may be off.
[*]Several hotspots added to try to direct the conflict towards desired goals.
[*]German starting military goods stockpile reduced.

Version 0.2.5
[*]Switched to have my mod overwrite vanilla AIParam file in order for my changes to take effect.
[*]Removed events that gave bonus military goods at game start. The 10X increase to military production is still in.

Version 0.2
[*]The mod is now fully separate and should not overwrite any vanilla files.
[*]Military goods production has been increased by a factor of 10 across the board. This may have unintended consequences in longer games due to techs or core game mechanics so I'll need to keep an eye on this. It may also have consequences in other areas of the economy which have not yet been adjusted to compensate.
[*]Each of the currently modified nations received an injection of military goods at game start. The Ottomans, Italians, Serbs, and Belgium each got 100k while France, Britain, Russia, and Austria Hungary each got 200k, and Germany got 300k.
[*]Reserve personnel increased for the Ottomans (+1 million), Italy (+1 million), Germany (+2 million), and Great Britain (+2 million).
[*]Russia's starting army was increased to be 50% larger.
[*]AI Parameters have been adjusted in the hopes of encouraging recon cavalry and artillery to move to the front more readily. These are rough changes and probably won't work as desired in long term games. They might not even work as intended right now, but I'm hoping that these changes have the desired effect.

Version 0.1 - This first release is meant for testing.
[*]The main European combatants have seen their unit lists multiplied tenfold, while also having their military initiatives set to full in order to ensure that they deploy and use their forces.
[*]This release is not at all realistic, balanced, or even fun at this point and I want anyone downloading this to understand that it is entirely to find out how the game handles these basic changes so that I can decide how to develop the mod going forward.
[*]The mod is also setup to overwrite core game files at the moment but I plan to change this for future releases. Create backups or use steam's verify integrity feature if you want to reset to vanilla.

Installation:

To install, just drag and drop the zipped files into your Ultimate install directory.

http://www.mediafire.com/file/k2cbk68w7 ... V0.3.1.rar
Last edited by way2co0l on Jul 09 2018, edited 4 times in total.

d-bassett
BattleGoat Team
Posts: 62
Joined: May 03 2018
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Re: 1914 project

#2 Post by d-bassett » Jul 06 2018

Looking forward to playing this, 1914 is my favorite start date.

Everything you are looking to do can be accomplished with events, check the gamepedia for more info.
https://supremeruler.gamepedia.com/Events

In particular some interesting events to look into

12 - Set AI Request
25 - Theatre Settings
33 - Battlezone Settings
39 - Military Buildup
55 - AI Stance
56 - AI Buildup
57 - AI Attack
68 - Set Hotspot
71 - Garrison Add/Remove

If you need some help/guidance let me know!

bowtie
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Re: 1914 project

#3 Post by bowtie » Jul 06 2018

Nice! Put it on git or something :p

way2co0l
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Posts: 686
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Re: 1914 project

#4 Post by way2co0l » Jul 06 2018

Thanks for the info! Definitely helpful and I plan to spend today brushing up on all of this stuff and how to do it. I might get into the actual work tonight, but tomorrow is more likely. I imagine the most tedious task will be multiplying the starting forces, because Russia has several hundred ground units at the start, so will end with several thousand when I'm done. And then again for every other major combatant of course. I was worried that if I couldn't find a way to increase AI military initiative so that they would deploy on their own, then I might have to try to put all of those units in actual locations but I might just be spared from having to do that. At least for now anyway. If this experiment of mine goes well and performs the way I expect, then I'll definitely want to improve on its accuracy and more balance into the starting forces vs the reserve forces, or if the AI starts trying to deploy too much too early I might instead hold units back behind an event that gives them later to simulate the actual mobilizations of the war. Obviously only going to be a one time thing for this first immediate war and not an actual repeatable feature but we'll see what it takes to get a more dynamic conflict going. My hopes are pretty high. :)

As for github. I've never actually used it. Well, except when modders have had it setup to download from there, but I mean for community involvement with the creation process. I know that's what it's used for but I've just never looked into how they accomplish that. I'll have to take a loot. Once I have my first version available, hopefully by the end of this weekend, but we'll see how much work this actually turns into. After that I'll look into git. :)

Thanks for the attention though!

d-bassett
BattleGoat Team
Posts: 62
Joined: May 03 2018
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Re: 1914 project

#5 Post by d-bassett » Jul 06 2018

No problem, for multiplying the unit quantities there is a (slightly) simpler way to do it. If you open the .csv file using Excel (or similar spreadsheet software) you can use functions to manipulate the data much easier than hand editing it as a text file.

I have made a quick walkthrough on how to use Excel to multiply all quantities by 10, hope this helps.
https://imgur.com/a/5Kkc6Yo

way2co0l
Brigadier Gen.
Posts: 686
Joined: Nov 29 2010
Human: Yes

Re: 1914 project

#6 Post by way2co0l » Jul 06 2018

d-bassett wrote:
Jul 06 2018
No problem, for multiplying the unit quantities there is a (slightly) simpler way to do it. If you open the .csv file using Excel (or similar spreadsheet software) you can use functions to manipulate the data much easier than hand editing it as a text file.

I have made a quick walkthrough on how to use Excel to multiply all quantities by 10, hope this helps.
https://imgur.com/a/5Kkc6Yo
LOL. I think I accidentally reported your post when I was actually trying to reply to it. I blame the heat... It's already in the triple digits and supposed to get as high as 112. :/. Sheesh. Anyway I was trying to say that it's very helpful! I hadn't even considered it and was already trying to prepare myself for the hours of grinding work in order to do the same thing. lol

d-bassett
BattleGoat Team
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Re: 1914 project

#7 Post by d-bassett » Jul 06 2018

Its okay, glad I could point you in the right direction! This heat is pretty intense, glad the office has a/c lol.

GIJoe597
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Re: 1914 project

#8 Post by GIJoe597 » Jul 06 2018

way2co0l wrote:
Jul 06 2018
LOL. I think I accidentally reported your post when I was actually trying to reply to it.
You did, I took care of it. Ha

way2co0l
Brigadier Gen.
Posts: 686
Joined: Nov 29 2010
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Re: 1914 project

#9 Post by way2co0l » Jul 06 2018

GIJoe597 wrote:
Jul 06 2018
way2co0l wrote:
Jul 06 2018
LOL. I think I accidentally reported your post when I was actually trying to reply to it.
You did, I took care of it. Ha
:oops: [_]O Now I feel silly. haha.

On the subject of my mod though, I've pretty much got the extra units all in the game. Again, no focus has been made for realistic numbers or for balance at this stage, I'm doing this entirely to test the results to see where I want to focus my efforts. Right now I need to figure out how to set events to adjust minister military priorities, and once I can get the combatants initiatives up to full so they'll deploy their forces, I'll release my primitive mod for anyone else that wants to test results with me.

way2co0l
Brigadier Gen.
Posts: 686
Joined: Nov 29 2010
Human: Yes

Re: 1914 project

#10 Post by way2co0l » Jul 06 2018

OP has been updated to reflect the first release. Again, I want to make it clear that this is only for testing and no one should expect this to be ready for a real game in any way shape or form. Very unusual behavior should be expected. I'd just love to know what that unusual behavior might be! :D

way2co0l
Brigadier Gen.
Posts: 686
Joined: Nov 29 2010
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Re: 1914 project

#11 Post by way2co0l » Jul 06 2018

Initial observations after first few months of playing.

[*] Several million casualties already by September. Casualties are more or less even with the Entente allies taking slightly more. I think I may want to lower delay the initiative change so that there's more of a gradual increase rather than all at once.

[*] The Western front is very active with both sides fighting fiercely. The Germans made some initial ground but have stalled out. They've also had a difficult time in Belgium having just recently taken Brussels. Need to find a way to funnel the German attack in that direction to take it sooner and spread the front.

[*] England is sending BEF forces despite nothing in my mod directly encouraging them to do so. I may still want to try to encourage them to do it more however, especially if I'm trying to increase the intensity of the German side of the attack.

[*] Military goods are being exhausted very quickly which is to be expected. Despite this, there's still a fairly healthy amount of fighting going on. I need to drastically increase production to try to get even more though, being sure to increase the inputs for MG at the same time. Perhaps even give larger free stockpiles at some point to keep the fighting up.

[*] Want to perhaps double naval fabs and at least triple land fabs to replenish losses.

[*] Despite the initial heavy losses, shortages of military goods and the massive numbers of units being destroyed will lead to casualties decreasing even if increasing unit fabrication. Populations should take a hit but not abysmally so.

[*] France and Russia are deploying their fleets, but far too late for my liking waiting for the war to begin which is too late IMO. Will need to find a way to get them to deploy earlier.

[*] Fighting in Serbia dies out way too early with the Austrians settling for Belgrade and having no desire to push further. Need to give them war goals to push even further.

[*] Fighting on the Russian front is a little lackluster, but I'm mostly ok with this. Could be scaled up by trying to give Russian armies gathering points until they're at a sufficient strength to strike. Germans and Austrians both have sufficient reserves in the area to respond so shouldn't overwhelm them but might increase Russia's threat.

[*] England's fleet is still performing poorly, but I haven't made any changes to this. If I can get France's navy out to sea earlier, and try to focus the deployed English vessels into the North Sea better then it might change this. Perhaps 4 or 5 releases down the line.

[*] Cavalry and artillery not being deployed to the front lines. Need to find how to adjust AI params.

evildari
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Re: 1914 project

#12 Post by evildari » Jul 07 2018

short test by me:
played as germany
Scraped whole navy just to get some mil.goods and build 6 mil.goods factories at start.
Smashed through belgium, attacked france, casualities started to increase.
Did not pay attention that sometime england and russia declared war.
Britain managed to get Bremen, Kiel and several hexes of the northwestern coast of germany.
Bremen was liberated but Kiel was out of reach due to very high royal navy presence.
A few unattended german units managed to capture even some fortified garrisoned cities from russia.
In October 194 southern france was on the way to be conquered before i ran out of ammo - 24 mil goods factories (did not count the medium ones)
produced slightly more than 400t/day and i needed more than 42000t/day !

I think it would be better to have increased battalion strength number, than just higher amount of units.
The amount of units to control them reasonable is quit limited. (not really an issue with me - since i am a fan of the blob of doom)
my mods
http://www.bgforums.com/forums/viewtopi ... 79&t=25932 (even techs and units for everyone - AI will own you too)
http://www.bgforums.com/forums/viewtopi ... 79&t=29326 (MARSX2)

way2co0l
Brigadier Gen.
Posts: 686
Joined: Nov 29 2010
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Re: 1914 project

#13 Post by way2co0l » Jul 07 2018

I can definitely understand that it creates a lot of new units to deal with but I'm of the opinion that it results in a more realistic world war. I've been running several tests both with and without the mod, and the additional number of units has some major benefits to the way the armies engage each other. For one, without the mod, a small number of German/Austrian units make a run straight through undefended Russia towards the Caucasus and it just creates this long line of territory until they hit the black sea and finally run out of ammunition and lose everything. Now, I'm not exactly sure why they're doing this, but I'm assuming that there's some kind of weight where they want that oil, which definitely makes sense. But with the additional units from my mod, I see that they attempt to do the same thing, but are stopped much sooner since the Russians actually have units that they can call on to block the advance. They never make it to the black sea in my tests with the mod, and almost always do without it. There just aren't enough units on the map to man the front and create any kind of epicness from any of the fighting. So I'm basically ok with the larger armies being a little harder to control. If anything I want to change AI params so that they'll actually use all of it rather than just the infantry. The French and Russian armies would have been a bigger challenge to you if they had deployed their cavalry and artillery to the front rather than let you get to them and take them on piecemeal.

The military goods shortage is definitely a very real issue and one I'm putting some thought into how I want to handle it. Obviously I want to increase the amount that can be produced, but how I want to do that and exactly how much are questions I haven't completely answered yet. I don't think I want to add very many new facilities to the game map, but rather I want to increase the productive ability of existing ones. At least 5x more. That would have given you about 2k per day, which is still far short of your 42k necessary. This isn't entirely unreasonable as this war challenged existing industrial complexes with the sheer volume of weapons and ammunition that needed to be created, where millions of shells were needed for some offensives alone. lol.

The initial fighting is thick, but units will die fast and this will ultimately reduce the MG requirements. But the shortage won't really stop fighting from happening, it'll just result in fighting occurring sporadically, which I also find kind of realistic. One side launching their attack in areas while conserving their strength in others, only to be counterattacked once the enemy is fully in supply again.

Of course I'm going to want to look at trying to balance all of this for best results, and to aim for historic realism when possible. Germany began the war with an industry much better suited for war than any of the other combatants with more guns and ammunition making it to the front than anyone else. It eventually balanced out somewhat, but the initial advantage was very real and I'd like to reflect that a little better in both initial MG reserves as well as productive power. Russia on the other hand will have the least MG productive power at first which is again historical. They had more men than guns at the time and those that had guns had very few bullets if any. It was a very real fact that many russians were sent to the battlefield to fight with nothing but the bayonet. I'm likely going to be increasing their army size even further, but their MG situation being even worse. It will very genuinely be shooting defenseless units, but making very little ground against them because they just keep sending more and more. lol.

Anyway, I want to say thank you for the feedback! It really is helpful, and my next release is going to be focused on the military goods situation. I'm definitely open to thoughts and suggestions on that front. But when it comes to army sizes, I know it won't be for everyone but I just think it's necessary for this war to be interesting and get better results from the things the AI does. Not having enough units to man a front, or just being able to walk right through holes in it are very real things in the base game and I've noticed definite improvements there. And I know the human player will always have an advantage, but if my goals to have the Russians pose more of a threat and for the British to bring even more forces into Belgium and northern france to assist, then it should definitely increase the challenge a German player has to deal with.

But one step at a time. The next step is to try to make progress on military goods. :D As long as the heat isn't too oppressive today, then I'm hopeful I can have something simple released by tonight.

way2co0l
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Re: 1914 project

#14 Post by way2co0l » Jul 07 2018

Updated with several changes, primarily to help with the military goods shortage. It's also now a standalone mod and shouldn't overwrite any core files.

way2co0l
Brigadier Gen.
Posts: 686
Joined: Nov 29 2010
Human: Yes

Re: 1914 project

#15 Post by way2co0l » Jul 07 2018

0.2 observations.

So I am noticing a definite improvement. Fighting in Serbia, Russia, and Belgium is more intense than before. Multiple issues still remain however.

Some nations like Germany deploy their forces much earlier than most others do, at least to a level no one else does. Prior to the war declaring, they have nearly 2 million men in service compared to less than a million for anyone else. I need to adjust the system to keep initiatives lower until right before the war when everyone's supposed to mobilize, and then turn them all the way up. I also need to find out why Russia and others don't deploy the way they should, and try to find a way to encourage them to deploy fully during mobilization. There's an event type that might be helpful to force this. But ultimately this will spread out the initial conflict a little more so it's not 0 to 100 on day one as forces need to move to the front rather than already being there.

The Allies seem to do fairly well holding their front, even though German gains in Belgium have increased. By delaying deployments as mentioned above, the German bases proximity to the front should allow them to have a stronger early initiative advantage which should see them making gains into France easier to be stopped once those allied forces begin to arrive. The BEF that England is sending into France is considerable.

The AI is still not deploying recon cavalry or artillery the way I wanted. I was trying to be conservative with my AI param changes and it's clear that I didn't do enough so I'll be putting more effort into fine tuning them... With a hammer. lol. I will force cavalry and artillery to the front lines damnit.

I need to look into German hotzone priorities to find out why they seem so obsessed with breaking through the Russian lines to get to the black sea. The oil would be useful but there's no way they'll actually achieve any success from this at such an early stage and their efforts would be better spent pushing against Warsaw, Kaunas, and Riga.

Need to find a way to stop the allied countries from being so eager to fight proxy wars in each others territories. Italy and the Ottomans should not be sending their army into the conflict before they're at war.

I may have gone overboard with the new military goods. More adjustments will be necessary.

Russia's army is huge and has too many MG. Need to be curtailed by quite a bit so that their army runs out. Only saving grace is how slow it is to deploy.

Ultimately allies have too much of an advantage except at sea where Germany continues to reign supreme. Still need to do something about that.

September 26th bug occurs where all units across the board are all instructed to return to reserve and so the fighting stops... I need to figure out what's doing this. I know it's not specific to my mod as it happens in vanilla too, but I want to at least fix it for my mod so I need to figure out what's causing it.

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