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Thread: When losing is cool

  1. #1
    Member Member LuciusCorneliusSulla's Avatar
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    Default When losing is cool

    As a turn-based strategy fanatic and immense Rome/Europa Barbaroum fan I ask you all the question - dont you ever wish you'd get your ass kicked in this type of game?
    In Vanilla and Europa Barbarorum, granted that starting off as someone like Pontus can be challenging - lets be fair, for money reasons only, once you come near to leveling the field economically your enemy doesnt stand a chance.

    When I was a young lad I was an avid fan of Birth of the Fed, a game some of you will remember, and its still a favorite of mine despite being about a decade displaced, and in said title I despite having similar numbers and economical strength would often have my ass handed to me. Fleet movements were difficult to predict, enemies seemed to get PMT at random intervals and all out attack, allies would rally to your defense or stab you in the back (but sensibly, for gain or because a better friend of theirs is against you). And when the chips were down and I was struggling to even hold my borders and was even losing colonies I felt like I was being truly challenged. At times a space creature of cube would come along at my most desperate hour and injure my enemy giving me a reprieve to launch an ultimately successful counterattack.

    What I'm getting at is, it felt like I was fighting living breathing nations with scruples or without scruples, or with common sense or blind xenophobia, with selfish aims or altruistic ideals. Dont take me wrong, I dont dare dis the total war experience or believe that this game could be improved in such a way. Just thinking out loud, I wish some other game could match that political dynamic or the near lifelike AI model.

    What I'm saying is, I'd like to be given a run for my money in these game types... Pity the ol campaign map cant be played Multiplayer

  2. #2
    The Rhetorician Member Skullheadhq's Avatar
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    Default Re: When losing is cool

    yes, i'd like to get spanked by an evil killing A.I
    "When the candles are out all women are fair."
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  3. #3

    Default Re: When losing is cool

    Interresting concept you have there LuciusCorneliusSulla.

    I have to admit that I myself might not be very happy about being overrun.
    However I do enjoy battles which are relatively complicated - where you have a chance to loose butt not all is lost right away. Therefore early gameplay can be enjoyeable - you can only afford relatively few troops while the enemy (money script) always has more money ergo more troops.
    The best situation is still the Thermophyle kind of battles. Like being besieged by an enemy 10 -times as many as the deffenders.
    You know you can't win. You know you will loose all your men and even the general... what do you fight for then?... Simple: make sure the enemy pays hard for there Victory. (In other words - cause them as many casualities as possible, above all take down their General and there best troops. Later in another batlle you can defeat whats left of their overconfident men..

    The other solution would be to test your failed Generals - if he looses a battle but survives. A Roman would have to take his life. But your "failed" FM's won't have such a choice. Give him a medium army of repleaceble, cheap, levys (an army of weak or medium troops - it is balanced and can be used well but not too strong shouldn't be a full stack) and send him in some direction to take 10 provinces (or as many as you wan't) without retraining or reinforcements. If he succeds he is forgiven and even rewarded. If not.. well.. you decide.

    If you wish you could try these possibilities above - or something similer to it.
    It surely is chalanging but it can be also very fun.
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  4. #4
    Tuba Son Member Subotan's Avatar
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    Default Re: When losing is cool

    It does happen very, very occasionally. And it's very satisfying, and the fact that it so rarely happens makes it defeat all the sweeter.
    Quote Originally Posted by LuciusCorneliusSulla View Post
    What I'm saying is, I'd like to be given a run for my money in these game types... Pity the ol campaign map cant be played Multiplayer
    It can. https://forums.totalwar.org/vb/showthread.php?t=111102

  5. #5

    Default Re: When losing is cool

    I get the feeling your (a) difficulty level is too low (b) your house roles are too lax (c) you have Fatige on [the only time I see it as OK is when playing with HA factions].

    The thing with EB is that many a times I find myself living by a hair pin, and I've lost a few campains. Others (like my present Lusotana campain, which I haven't played in 3 weeks now) looks like it will end with a terrible stalemate between me and the Ptolemoi who control most of the east, save for india and the steppes.
    Last edited by NeoSpartan; 01-13-2009 at 21:48.

  6. #6

    Default Re: When losing is cool

    Quote Originally Posted by NeoSpartan View Post
    I get the feeling your (a) difficulty level is too low (b) your house roles are too lax (c) you have Fatige on [the only time I see it as OK is when playing with HA factions].
    Stat and money bonusses are just not the same as an opponent whose mind is on par with yours. Of course you will lose eventually if you boost the AI-bonusses enough. But in the ideal case a unit or a city or whatever should be worth the exact same in the hands of you and of the AI and only the way it is used should decide about the advantage.
    Well, that's the way it should be and it's not possible with what we got. Houserules help, but no houserules and no stat or money or whatever bonusses can replace an opponent with wits.
    I think that's his point and that's the same way I feel.

    I'd like to know why you don't think playing with fatigue is OK. Would you mind telling us?
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  7. #7

    Default Re: When losing is cool

    Playing as the Alemanni in BI was a 50/50 shot at a 3 year campaign. No money + war with the WRE + one province = disaster.
    From Fluvius Camillus for my Alexander screenshot

  8. #8

    Default Re: When losing is cool

    He chooses to do that b/c the biggest problem the AI has is with fatigue. Turning it off will keep the AI from reaching you with already exhausted troops that you can rout almost at will. I've considered doing that myself but I've gotten better at coaxing the AI into battles where it won't run itself ragged before engaging.
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  9. #9
    Villiage Idiot Member antisocialmunky's Avatar
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    Default Re: When losing is cool

    The Alex AI is pretty good compared to RTW. It has honestly surprised me many times. That or you can go and play some Civ 4. Civ 4 has great a great, memorable, and charming AI. Just becareful because Isabelle of Spain and Catherine the Great like to rape you a lot.

    On a side note:

    I had a series of epic bridge battles as the KH against a Ponic Army with a Hai Army. Pontus was besieging Nikia via the bridge. I had only a few units with the Athenian governor. So out of desperation, I send for some Thracian Light Spearmen and skirmishers from Byzanton. 4 units total, 600 men. I had them attack the Pontic army on the bridge and used my governor as a reenforcement. 3000 Pontic troops with 3 FMs backed up by 2000 Hai Archers and Horse Archer. Well suffice to say that it was a blood bath. I actually lost the first battle and had to fall back to Nikia. However I killed about 2500 of them. Surprisingly they didn't attack the city presumably to mourn the death of their generals. So I sent 4 units of Galatians. I attack them again. It was hard fought and at the end of it I had about 60 guys holding my side of the bridge.

    I wouldn't have minded losing. It was a great series of battles I've fought in my current game.
    Fighting isn't about winning, it's about depriving your enemy of all options except to lose.



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  10. #10

    Default Re: When losing is cool

    I just did this (lose a major battle) today. . .
    It was kind of shocking, but pretty cool.
    I had a FM of Mak descent (not desirable in Getai society), running about building watchtowers in the far nothern regions of my realm. He had a load of crappy traits, so that's pretty much all he was good for. I looked at the far northern VC province and decided he could probably take out that garrison with a good-sized merc army, so I bought the army and attacked.

    The fight was going pretty much as I expected. . . my 1 HA and 1 Baltic archer took out ~15% of the enemy force before we came to blows, the German heavies and clubmen were beating up on the spearmen facing them. . . the enemy cavalry charged unsupported and was slaughtered. All very predictable.

    Then, one of my clubmen routed. I sent the archers into the gap in my line. My bastarnae routed. I charged my general into the gap. Several enemy units routed while this was going on, so I wasn't too concerned. Then the German heavies routed and took 2 clubmen with them (my entire left side). I pulled my FM out of combat and charged him into the nearest enemy spearmen, who promptly stuck pointy things into his horse. . . bodyguard rout, followed by most of the rest of the army. I set up a second line, with recovered routers, to the rear of the collapsed main line. The enemy crashed into the line, suffering many casualties before their friends were able to flank my survivors and BANG. . . battle lost. It was a very near-run thing and I nearly won, which made it pretty cool.

    Of course, I've now got to send a proper Getai army up there and avenge my heroic (now) cousin's death. . .

  11. #11
    Member Member theoldbelgian's Avatar
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    Default Re: When losing is cool

    universalis 3 is also quite challenging fun if you don't play with one of the huge european factions butt 2 large against each other is also quite fun
    ive just finished a 16-year war of austrians against bourgundians and i nearly at severall points lost the war

    the fun thing with this is that if youre army is up front and the war takes the long the country side is going to rebel

    and thats a pain in the butt for sure

    actually ive never really lost a war in eb :s butt maybe i am too lax with myself and my house rules

  12. #12

    Default Re: When losing is cool

    Quote Originally Posted by LordCurlyton View Post
    He chooses to do that b/c the biggest problem the AI has is with fatigue. Turning it off will keep the AI from reaching you with already exhausted troops that you can rout almost at will. ...
    exaclty!

    especially if you have Gaesatae on your side.

    I mean, its very easy for the AI to tire its troops. I mean they don't even have to run around the map, if you put your spearmen in HOLD and the AI doesn't its units get exausted, while yours are "Fresh" or "Warmed up". Its very hard to the AI to manange unit fatige.

    The only time I leave Fatige ON is when I play an HA faction (the few times I have) and thats because tiring the enemy is a major component the HA way of fighting.


    -------------------------------------------------------------------
    Also:

    True that a smart player will be the AI regardless of house rules and diffuclties 9/10. HOWEVER, those house rules and difficulty level keep your campain ON EDGE most of the time. Thats because if you loose a major battle it can cost you a settlement or two, or just throw off your offensive campain and force you to defend your borders for a few years before you raise another offensive army/s.

    Thats (for a lot of people) the point of having house rules, increasing difficulty levels, and having Fatigue OFF.

  13. #13

    Default Re: When losing is cool

    If you're looking for a really good game against an extremely good AI, check out Galactic Civilizations II.

  14. #14

    Default Re: When losing is cool

    Quote Originally Posted by NeoSpartan View Post
    I mean, its very easy for the AI to tire its troops. I mean they don't even have to run around the map, if you put your spearmen in HOLD and the AI doesn't its units get exausted, while yours are "Fresh" or "Warmed up". Its very hard to the AI to manange unit fatige.

    The only time I leave Fatige ON is when I play an HA faction (the few times I have) and thats because tiring the enemy is a major component the HA way of fighting.
    That sounds reasonable. The situation I had in mind when thinking about fatigue were the battles in which I'm considerably outnumbered and have to hurry back and forth across the battlefield to compensate for that. Perhaps I should think it over and play without fatigue in future.
    Last edited by Lysimachos; 01-15-2009 at 08:09.
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  15. #15
    Villiage Idiot Member antisocialmunky's Avatar
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    Default Re: When losing is cool

    Quote Originally Posted by Cbvani View Post
    If you're looking for a really good game against an extremely good AI, check out Galactic Civilizations II.
    If by good you mean out expand you and crush you, yes. I always found that game a boring expando-rama. Then after that you leverage your superior population to out everything your opponent and crush them.
    Last edited by antisocialmunky; 01-15-2009 at 16:53.
    Fighting isn't about winning, it's about depriving your enemy of all options except to lose.



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  16. #16
    EB annoying hornet Member bovi's Avatar
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    Default Re: When losing is cool

    What's wrong with Explore, Expand, Exploit, Exterminate?

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  17. #17
    Biotechnlogy Student Member ||Lz3||'s Avatar
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    Default Re: When losing is cool

    It's not fun to recreate a second punic war...

    I'm not too sure if I want to turn fatigue off...
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  18. #18

    Default Re: When losing is cool

    Quote Originally Posted by ||Lz3|| View Post
    ....
    I'm not too sure if I want to turn fatigue off...
    in MP you don't. but against the AI, you do.

    At the risk of sounding cliche "One u turn Fatige Off you never turn it back on"

  19. #19

    Default Re: When losing is cool

    Losing battles is great. I use my house rules to make sure I lose at least some during a campaign.

    House rules apply only once the economy is in the black and making a tiny profit each turn. Rules are:

    1. Building up economy (construction) always takes priority over building up the army except when your territory is being invaded.
    2. Buy as few troops as possible. Only when you really need reinforcements.
    3. Buy troops based on value for money. Don't build the best and most expensive troops unless absolutely necessary, or unless the treasury is overflowing and you can afford it easily.
    4. Keep taxes as low as possible (especially for small towns). Once making a large profit, lower taxes. Growing town populations always takes priority over higher profits.
    5. Manage with as small an army as possible. Let the enemy outnumber you by 1.5 to 1 when planning a battle. If the enemy force has 9 units, attack them with 6 units or less. If your troops are much better than theirs, assume they will be a pushover and let them outnumber you by 2 to 1. Only if your troops are much worse than theirs can you have equal numbers as the AI force.

  20. #20

    Default Re: When losing is cool

    I dont use any house rules and I tend to come close to losing quite often Although I don't try and rapidly expand, I tend to go on random missions if I see something I want to do (for example, my current mission to save Pontos & Co from yellow death, by destroying the Ptolies. (I am Lusotann, so my forces there are a bit raggedy).

  21. #21

    Default Re: When losing is cool

    Quote Originally Posted by Chris_ View Post
    I dont use any house rules and I tend to come close to losing quite often Although I don't try and rapidly expand, I tend to go on random missions if I see something I want to do
    Aye, ever heard of the Punic kingdom on the Bosphorous? That's me when I built a large fleet (two fully stacked fleets, probably my strongest fleet in EB), loaded it with 4 family members and two fully stacked armies of elite units to take the Crimean peninsula from the sarmatians.
    Last edited by Tyrfingr; 01-16-2009 at 17:11.
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  22. #22
    Villiage Idiot Member antisocialmunky's Avatar
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    Default Re: When losing is cool

    Quote Originally Posted by bovi View Post
    What's wrong with Explore, Expand, Exploit, Exterminate?
    Too much emphasis on expand makes a One Right Strategy of Expand. Expansion is key in any game but a game that over emphasizes on it is boring. Its like playing the exact same game over and over again. I can just make a self organizing map and run that and its about the same amount of amusement except in 60 seconds.
    Last edited by antisocialmunky; 01-16-2009 at 19:04.
    Fighting isn't about winning, it's about depriving your enemy of all options except to lose.



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  23. #23
    Friend of Lady Luck Member Mooks's Avatar
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    Default Re: When losing is cool

    I wish the AI would be so good without bonuses that I have to use every trick I can to get by.

    Right now if I lose a battle I actually have more fun then just rolling over the enemy like usual.
    Quote Originally Posted by Furunculus View Post
    i love the idea that angsty-teens can get so spazzed out by computer games that they try to rage-rape themselves with a remote.

  24. #24
    Biotechnlogy Student Member ||Lz3||'s Avatar
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    Default Re: When losing is cool

    Quote Originally Posted by Jaertecken View Post
    Aye, ever heard of the Punic kingdom on the Bosphorous? That's me when I built a large fleet (two fully stacked fleets, probably my strongest fleet in EB), loaded it with 4 family members and two fully stacked armies of elite units to take the Crimean peninsula from the sarmatians.

    Have you heard about the lusitanian in India
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  25. #25
    Guest Dayve's Avatar
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    Default Re: When losing is cool

    I'm getting my ass kicked so hard in a Hayasdan campaign right now you wouldn't believe.

    First of all i took 3 towns. The one above, to the north-west and north-east of the capital city. I then took a town in the moutains to the south-west, but only held it for 2 years before the Seleukids took it.

    I was then defeated in battle and the Seleukids seized my capital, which was my main source of income and recruitment center, and the only city i had with enough population to actually recruit soldiers with. My faction leader retreated to Mtskheta(?) where i recruited what units i could, including what mercenaries i could afford, and took off to the south, into the Seleukid lands.

    My family members were moved into a safe small city that the Seleukids will not touch as my faction heir and his small force was defeated while trying to ambush an enormous Seleukid army floating around my old capital.

    With the faction leader i managed to capture a Seleukid city and rape it for every penny i could. With this money i recruited mercenaries i marched onward towards Seleukia, hoping to sack it and access tens of thousands of minai and raise more mercenaries. My army was met by a Seleukid army on the way there and utterly destroyed, including the 9-star faction leader and his adopted son.

    Meanwhile back home, my old capital had revolted back to me. Unfortunately the only troops that appeared were skirmishers, slaves and a couple of pantodapoi. I immediately sent my faction heir to command the new troops and some success was had in defeating the Seleukid force which tried to take back the city, however while marching to take a Seleukid city to the south which i planned on, again, raping for cash, i was sandwiched inbetween two much large Seleukid armies and destroyed, including the faction heir.

    As it stands now, i have 3 cities. Two of them have less than 1000 population (much less) and 1 of them has 1500. Two of the cities don't even have basic traders or farms and income is practically nonexistent, even though all i have are 3 family members (two of them are green sixteens and one is a good manager but nothing else) and a battered unit of Caucasian archers.

    So yeah, if you want to get your ass thoroughly reamed, play Hayasdan on VH/M.

  26. #26

    Default Re: When losing is cool

    Quote Originally Posted by ||Lz3|| View Post
    Have you heard about the lusitanian in India
    I still chip away at that campaign from time to time , I have a 1.1 install just for it.

  27. #27
    Villiage Idiot Member antisocialmunky's Avatar
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    Default Re: When losing is cool

    Quote Originally Posted by ||Lz3|| View Post
    Have you heard about the lusitanian in India
    I haven't heard about them but I've heard about the Iberians in Armenia.
    Fighting isn't about winning, it's about depriving your enemy of all options except to lose.



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  28. #28

    Default Re: When losing is cool

    Quote Originally Posted by Cullhwch View Post
    Playing as the Alemanni in BI was a 50/50 shot at a 3 year campaign. No money + war with the WRE + one province = disaster.
    I like that too... it's really fun... especially since in the first years WRE havent noticed that they're being overrun everywhere, they just attack you constantly from all directions, even tho it weakens them to the point of collapse on all other fronts
    Moreover, I advise that Syracusans must be added to EB (insp. by Cato the Elder )

    Is looking forward to the 2090's, when EB 20.0 will be released - spanning the entire Eurasian continent and having no Eleutheroi - with a faction for every independent state instead. Look out for the Gedrosians, the Cretans and the kingdom of Kallatis!

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