Iron War - Official Thread

  • @forthebirds what about instead of making places like the central US conquerable to simulate them mobilizing, you make the value of their territories go up each of the first few turns?

  • That's a great idea but I'm unfortunately not capable of pulling that off.😓

  • I changed the number of battles to 4 for land & 3 at sea.
    I really like the possibility of a stalemate. which allows the other player to counterattack or you should plan to attack with overwhelming odds.
    sorry that I didn't spell that out.

  • @Black_Elk
    I like your opening moves. You do seem a little conservative with Germany's subs which may be a good idea. I like to attack right away because their attack value is greater than on defense. Also you can bomb Great Brit, but against the computer I would only use 1 bomber to keep it fair. AI doesn't defend with aircraft.
    If it was pvp I would go at them with both bombers and hope to destroy the factory.🙄
    With Finland , on the opener I like to go all in into E. Finland to force Leningrad away from Germany.
    Then, when they do build up, I duck back to Finland and hope I can survive.

  • @forthebirds

    Change the production of a territory like this:

    <attachment name="conditionAttachmentUSARound2" attachTo="USA" javaClass="games.strategy.triplea.attachments.RulesAttachment" type="player">
       <option name="rounds" value="2"/>
    <attachment name="triggerAttachmentUSAMidwestPUsTo4" attachTo="USA" javaClass="games.strategy.triplea.attachments.TriggerAttachment" type="player">
       <option name="conditions" value="conditionAttachmentUSARound2"/>
       <option name="territories" value="USA Midwest"/>
       <option name="territoryAttachmentName" value="TerritoryAttachment"/>
       <option name="territoryProperty" value="production" count="4"/>
       <option name="when" value="after:USAEndTurn"/>
       <option name="uses" value="1"/>


  • @wc_sumpton
    Thanks. I appreciate the info very much.

  • Ah that makes sense now if it was reset to be lower for a purpose. Just got back a second ago. I'll for sure give it a full game for each side to see what you've cooked up.

    @ff03k64 I was kinda thinking something along those lines as well. For a map at this scale I think it can definitely support a larger economy or larger forces that develop over time, whereas usually A&A kind of frontloads the action by having larger starting forces that are harder to replace and kind of determine what can be done.

    The vanilla game here is also a little different in that the starting cash and resources don't necessarily match the actual production or resources controlled (here its larger) but I also like that as the simplest way to establish a play balance if one side or the other is overpowered. I like a map where the production value written on the map shapes the play (moreso than like objective bonuses, which is another way money can come into play in AA50 or G40 but I prefer just territory values since that can be read at a glance.) The gold spot visual in this map is also nice to indicate where the +5 spots are.

    One thing I think would be nice though is if the capital territories and major VC territories where more in balance with each other. I feel like 30 PUs should be the ceiling and anything more just pushed out to surrounding territories or more +5 spots adjacent. I think the floor should be 20 PUs for a capital whereas in vanilla its 10 PUs and sometimes lower. All the ultra high value spots are Axis capitals so I think you could break off a 20 here and there and spread it out a bit for the key core territories. But basically a few more +5 scattered about.

    For neutrals, if the idea is to do quick sweeps in the opener, I'd say just make em true neutral but empty of units so they can be blitzed through. Especially for spots corresponding to countries that later declared war, or basically most of North America could work that way under the aegis either of USA, Britain, or Brazil depending on who goes where. But anyway I think it could be handled with fewer combats in some spots like that, whereas for territories that were really like Neutral Neutral because of geography or political alignment 1939-45, those I would have large Neutral forces, but lower values (no +5s and such to make them big targets.) Bosporus I think is problematic because canal control is so critical, and Spain kind of builds of Gibraltar in a similar way. But yeah, having more to kind of create that build of momentum for USA is cool.

    I'm going to charge ahead vs Soviets now and see how it shakes out.

    @wc_sumpton for sure! Nice
    I think a lot of interesting things could be accomplished with just production tweaks and adjustments to neutrals

  • @Black_Elk
    If you notice I had to make Switzerland have 40 neutral infantry because Germany kept attacking it at a heavy loss of units! I just didn't want Switzerland overtaken so that's what I did. Now they leave it alone, finally!!

  • @forthebirds you could just make it impassable

  • @ff03k64
    I hate to sound really stupid but I 'm good at editing and that's about it. 😞

  • haha yeah I did notice. So far the play pattern is pretty cool, I like a beefier British Colonies. Still think the Brit play block would be nice to have altogether at a go with UK and Brit colonies after Italy. Adding impassible neutrals I also like if the idea is to totally lock off some stuff from ever happening. The Black Sea might actually be more interesting under those conditions, but its also kind of fun to allow for some things to be possible, just really expensive, and maybe not worth the investment unless doing like a showboat to stomp the machine hehe, which is fun on maps like these.

    Took me a while to parse Germany, since they got a lot of units in hidden away spots, but yeah the fuel is the major thing I think and getting a big bunch of german transports next round. This was the HardAIs response to G opener. Looking over Italy's start now
    iron-war-the-master HardAI Allies Italy 1 combat move.tsvg

    The editor and edit mode is a cool feature of tripleA. I like how much you were able to get done just messing with the game save. Editing the xml isn't super hard, but doing a mod of the map is kind of more involved esp if competing with the vanilla one. Still I think this map is pretty rad, so I like the tweaks. Gives me something to do on an otherwise boring night inside. Everything is on fire out here wild west. Just bombing with air filters and tripleA to keep preoccupied. Catch ya in a few

    ps. just noticed that there is still an issue on this map with placing fighters on carriers. It occurs when more than 1 coastal factory borders the same sea zone. I think the carriers on this map would be better under v3 placement rules, instead of revised placement rules. Anyhow you can see here with the Libya fighters unable to move them onto deck during Italy's placement phase.

    iron-war-the-master HardAI Allies Italy placement.tsvg

    Taking a look now at Japan
    iron-war-the-master HardAI Allies Japan1 Combat Move.tsvg

  • @forthebirds said in Iron War - Official Thread:

    I hate to sound really stupid but I 'm good at editing and that's about it. 😞

    You might be surprised how easy some of these changes are. Impassable would just be adding one line. Putting units in a territory would be a single other line. And there are a number of knowledgeable people here willing to help.

  • @ff03k64
    Thanks, I appreciate the encouragement.

  • @Black_Elk
    Great moves with Italy taking Egypt. I had noticed that it looked weak. Also noticed that you took Gibraltar. That should help a lot.
    As far as the fighters not landing, I think its a glitch somehow. I did notice that when fuel runs out some planes move first to wear carriers should be but they can't get there.
    Hope that you're having fun. I'm on the east coast waiting for Sally to give us a deluge.

    I'll see how you're doing tomorrow. Stay safe.

  • Oh man I just heard about that when I was making dinner. I'm hoping for rain over here but not like that, damn. Hopefully it doesn't hit too crazy down there!

    I just did a quick survey for Japan, thinking maybe something like this for the opener... To set up for Sumatra slam J2. I like the set up on Pearl and how China is stronger. I went with a hit on the battleships here. The neutral impasse above Manchuria and no starting factory takes some of the pressure of J on that front. Seemed to do the trick on me anyway J1 as a deterrent. I'd see it as basically emulating the NAP by defusing the border clash there with a demilitarized zone between em, but seems to remain at Japan's prerogative whether or not to war against Russia since soviets are positioned more for defense. Will see how it cracks off up there, but I focused south using my vanilla attack pattern just with a bit more heat from the added transports to punk French colonies hehe. I like the set up on pearl since it forces a bit of a choice there with the carrier based aircraft.

    iron-war-the-master HardAI Allies Japan1 Combat.tsvg

    Not too shabby I was able to move most of the fleet where I wanted it to be on non com, save 1 sub in home waters. Figured to let Thailand handle Singapore and Hanoi. I debated on moving their pocket fleet to converge with Japan but ended up just leaving it in place to save the fuel hehe.

    iron-war-the-master HardAI Allies Thailand Placement.tsvg

    USA turn block just moved. AI China clapped back pretty hard from Chungking against the Japanese forward stack which was nice to see. That second flying Tiger making the difference for them haha. Nice touch! I think it went suicide squad though, which is something I've seen the AI do on this map occasionally esp with air transports. Same happens in vanilla, I think you may be right about it somehow doing with carrier fuel shortage contributing to the crashes at sea. But anyhow, they got a solid kill so I guess they figured it was worth it hehe.

    This is what it looks like G2. USA I think did the continental expansion move as intended, since they got all the lower 48 under control out the first round. I still think it'd be cool to see them sprawl over like all of central america and some of south america or the various caribbean islands on their way to full strength in early rounds. But on the whole the first round was pretty fun. New spin on the game for sure. I'll play it out later tonight and post anything interesting. Catch ya tomorrow if you're around.

    iron-war-the-master HardAI Allies G2 Combat Move.tsvg
    iron-war-the-master HardAI Allies Italy2 Combat Move.tsvg
    iron-war-the-master HardAI Allies Japan2 Combat Move.tsvg
    iron-war-the-master HardAI Allies G3 Combat Move.tsvg
    iron-war-the-master HardAI Allies Italy3 Combat Move.tsvg
    iron-war-the-master HardAI Allies Japan3 Combat Move.tsvg
    iron-war-the-master HardAI Allies G4 Combat Move.tsvg

    Got the take on India J3, but now to see if Germany has enough fuel and enough heat for the G4 timing on Stalingrad hehe. Best of luck HardAI!

    Snagged it! haha
    iron-war-the-master HardAI Allies Finland 4 Placement.tsvg

    Probably Axis are cruising from this point, but might give it a few more rounds before switching sides. So far so good though. Its pretty entertaining on the Axis side fuel running dry is a major consideration for fleet movement, but I just opted to sacrifice the subs and hold Rommel back off North Africa drives just to make sure both bombers could reach in the Leningrad attack. I suspect Allies will probably more tricky. Might dive into that tomorrow.
    Have a good night

    Best Elk

    ps. 20 VCs at the close of the 4th for team Axis. I'll try team Allies next to see how it looks from the other side.
    iron-war-the-master HardAI Allies G5 Combat Move.tsvg

    I haven't seen any production expansion from the computer yet, even using the older build. Unless I missed one somewhere. Maybe going up against AI Japan would tell us whether or not they ever will buy a factory. Its still hard for me to tell whether the Axis advantage here is stronger than the og, but they felt pretty buff by comparison.

    I tend to feel as Mora said below that the side that needs more to work for a buff is probably Allies. Though the Allied Atlantic fleets are definitely improved here over Vanilla, Axis fleets are also pretty mighty, so not sure its really an offset. I'll have to take a peak switching teams to see, but that was first impression.

    If trying for an xml type edit with adjustments to turn order or map territory values, I'd probably look at going a bit more incremental with some of the changes, but definitely including some of the ideas presented in the edit mod that forthebirds posted today would be fun. Adds some spice to the pot haha

  • If in this last iteration Axis is stronger, then I am reluctant to try it vs. AI. Axis are my prefered side and I don't wish it to become too easy. Is there a recommended map to start from, besides the Vanilla? Let's say with some fuel issues addressed. And I have another question: is AI purchasing any factories in Iron War?

  • @Mora here is version you might like. I made it a little while back, saved out using the latest stable of tripleA 2.2.20. Its a simple edit mode savegame, so that it could be launched without having to mod the map files. I made it basically as a template to see how the map would balance without Pro-Side neutrals, and trying to give the AI enough fuel to be competitive. I just touched it up right now, so it should work with the current stable.

    Iron-War neutrals + fuel mod.tsvg

    Would be curious to hear what you think?

    There are no income modifiers, and no significant changes to the starting units, except that here all neutrals are handled the same way (ie true neutral, attack-able by either side) and there are only two types of those generally speaking, either empty or stacked.

    1. If the territory was a belligerent at some point later in the war, then it is simply emptied of starting units here. for a walk-in. First come first served.
    2. If the territory was historically neutral throughout most of the war till 1945 (Sweden, Switz, Turkey etc) then it has 10 neutral armies on it (or a 10 stack close by) to reflect the status of that larger region as non belligerent and to preserve some of those geographical choke points.

    So countries that entered the war at some point later on can be activated in game simply by moving a unit into that territory to claim ownership here. Those territories that did not enter the war however, have more of a roadblock thing going with a nod to that reality. I at least tried to put a 10 stack for each general region that was truly neutral like that. Sure sometimes the computer may still attack these spots at disadvantage, but for the most part it preserves a more historical WW2 look to the map spread I think. For the truly true neutrals, if there was a starting resource like oil or steel in their spot, I moved it to an adjacent space that made sense. I just wanted something uniform and simple, and so I liked how that felt rounded out with the 10s where it made sense. I think its easier to read the map at a glance this way, and thus to quickly determine which of these passive neutral areas is meant to be seriously in play, without complicating it overmuch.

    The simple neutrality scheme here is meant to suggest something a bit more like this over the long haul...

    You can see in the map and lists of that wiki how the neutrality situation of the war broke down by nation/region over the course of the war. Most of the globe was at war by the end, but with a couple notable exceptions here and there. Those are the spots that have the larger neutral stacks in this mod, the rest are empty for simplicity.

    Each faction also has either 3, 6, or 12 added fuel barrels from the start (the green synths that can be destroyed) in various locations, depending on the size of the faction and their number of starting units. So the big nations each have a dozen barrels, the mid sized nations have half a dozen barrels, and the tiny factions each have 3 barrels. These are distributed in some areas to be safe fuel, and in other areas to be contested as a way to make certain islands or regions more significant to the playpattern. The idea was to provide enough fuel to maneuver into the mid game as either side, but still running dry towards the end.

    In this one Germany does control Denmark from the start so that is a key difference. 1 German transport was removed as an offset for a start date is imagined as April 1940. But otherwise beyond that, the neutrals and the added green barrels, its like Vanilla for the rest of the unit set up pretty much. For a harder challenge with either side you can add income modifiers from the launch screen, but I think the computer actually plays pretty well just with the extra fuel.

    If giving the Allies a buff, I would probably suggest another USA starting transport, or giving China a second fighter, or a few of the ideas that seemed to work well in the mod forthebirds posted earlier. But this one is pretty much the vanilla just with the neutral tweaks and the fuel stuff. And Denmark of course, mainly since the AI plays so horribly when those straits are closed, but also cause it seemed to fit for the start date from the game notes.

    I think it would be cool to work off something like this but actually change some territory PU values, or to have the turn order adjusted so all the Brit factions move together but that'd have to be done in the map files with a map mod. I also like some of the other ideas showcased in forthebirds mod for a different balance of forces between the various starting armies and fleets. The one I made was less ambitious in that regard, I mainly just wanted to handle some of the probs I saw with neutrals and fuel shortages. But I dig the idea of combing it over and beefing it up a bit for a new slant too hehe

    Best Elk

    Allies before the attack on Pearl Harbor, Allies that joined after Pearl Harbor, Axis powers, Neutral powers

    Map of Participants in World War II:

    (Dark Green) Allies before the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor, including colonies and occupied countries. Dark green diamonds represent countries that initially were neutral but during the war were annexed by the USSR.

    (Light Green) Allied countries that entered the war after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Light green diamonds represent countries that later in the war changed from the Axis to the Allies.

    (Light Blue) Axis Powers and their colonies or countries that had to choose a side in order to stay independent. Light blue diamonds represent countries either being conquered by the Axis Powers, becoming puppets of those (Vichy France and several French colonies).

    (Gray) Neutral countries during WWII. Circles represent city-states or geographically small countries.

  • @Black_Elk
    Wow! That was a quick victory! You developed quite a German navy. I did notice that the AI did build some factories but one huge blunder that it made was that the FR Colonies built a factory in FR Guiana rd 2 instead of FR India which India needs badly.
    Personally, I never saw this happen before. Usually it builds a factory in Fr. India rd 1 because it seems to know that Fr. Indo China is doomed. I have found that a small change can have big consequences. Perhaps a factory should be placed in Fr. India from the start. I also have never seen the AI leave Egypt so weak on rd 1.
    That is curious to me. Perhaps it needs to be bolstered some more. Anyway, I appreciate you trying this setup and look forward to suggestions on improving it.
    Stay safe.

  • Yeah German transport actions are pretty overpowered, mainly because of the way the Sea zones are set up. Moving German units from occupied Normandy to Leningrad would take 6 turns if marching overland, or 3 turns and a shit ton of fuel if racing there with Tanks/Mech, but it only takes 1 turn if using transports. Italy has a similar thing going on in the Med, and Japan in South Asia where they can sprawl with a quickness.

    I think ideally what we might want is a situation where Germany can't shuck from the North Sea Zone so easily, maybe by having their main surface fleet oriented more on the Baltic Sea Zone. Or similarly to make it a bit harder for Italy or Japan to springboard onto India so quickly by bolstering Egypt or Singapore. (I still think the turn order is problematic for that, since it would really be better if Britain and British colonies followed Italy for the overall balance on the Mid East and India.)

    On the one hand I think having all these smaller factions does add somewhat to the charm and variety of the map, but on the other hand they are definitely presented as much more powerful and much more consequential to the gameplay, than they would ever have been in the historical reality.

    For example, most of the smaller Axis factions featured here never actually fought outside their own starting territories during the war. So the idea of like Iraqi armies marauding anywhere outside of Iraq, or of like Thailand rampaging across South Asia all up into the Hindu Kush, that is for sure historical fiction hehe. But if they're going to exist as playable nations, it makes sense to me they should at least be able to collect 20 PUs or more in their immediate neighborhood just to be viably entertaining to play.

    Same deal on the Allied side, where the role of the little guys is pretty outsized. Even France is kind of built on a post-war revisionist mythology, where the ideas of La Résistance and the Free French are played way up, and Vichy collaboration is played way down. The reality was rather less glorious hehe. I think most of the smaller factions could easily be ditched and the map would still work just fine using the big 4 on team Allies: Soviet Union, Britain, USA, China and the big 3 on team Axis: Germany, Italy, Japan. But then we'd lose out on all the cool music and unit graphics etc that Frostion put together, so I'd be reluctant to just nix all that work. Still I think there are ways it could be made to feel a bit more realistic there, while still having the smaller powers function in a way that's engaging, but without them overshadowing the broader gameplay between the big dogs too much.

    I agree with doing whatever makes sense for starting factories to get the AI to play a fun game. Like if a starting Factory for French Colonies in India is what they need, seems fine to me. Better for them to just have it from the getgo I'd say, since the little guys are pretty cash strapped. South Africa, French Colonies, ANZAC, KNIL, and Brazil are the most problematic on the Allied side in terms of scale, or rather for their inability to 'scale up' very much. I think some things could be done by changing the value of their starting territories or to the value of nearby neutrals, especially if it makes sense for the war. For French Colonies Madagascar or Syria might be a +5 as an example. Or for South Africa, the 6 PUs they try to take from Mozambique and Angola (both of which were neutral throughout the war) could just be moved to Pretoria for a higher value starting territory.

    I think the regional capitals/VCs in many spots should be increased to a value of 15 or 20 PUs for most nations, but esp the smaller ones. Likewise some of the main Axis territories currently valued at 40 or 50, could be reduced down to 30 PUs, with the rest of the PUs spread out across their other starting territories, or else into easy conquest zones nearby. Just to try and find something that's weighted a bit more equally by sides. In general I'd try to shift more money out of the interior and onto the main peripheral fronts, where they could support more contested spots at +5 in the intermediate areas of the map.

    I'd set that stuff up first though, get it dialed, and then use the starting income and unit adjustments to handle any disparities or balance issues from there as needed. Another thing I'd consider would be incorporating v3 carrier rules, since Classic/Revised carrier rules are kind of outmoded now and less familiar. Also while running through my back catalog of random Iron War ideas, I still feel that renaming the SS resource to something a bit more generic would be good. The function is fine and the resource gives an interesting conquest/purchasing dynamic, but "SS" has pretty strong negative connotations. I don't think its really necessary to conjure up the Schutzstaffel in the game. Something like "Special Recruitment" SR, or whatever else basically, would serve much better I think. If we wanted to tweak the actual map properties or xml I mean, those are some things I'd look at too.

  • @Black_Elk
    Those are all good ideas although I personally would have trouble implementing them.
    You helped me to see that Germany's transports can be a powerful influence so I am going to remove the 2 German transports from the start and put a factory in Fr. India to start the game. Do you think that alone could have an impact?

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