#1 2021-08-02 07:24:14

From: Silicon Valley
Posts: 183

Controversial idea: Get rid of allied transport

-WHAT?????  Why would you do that? It doesn't make sense!  Why would you want to take away a feature?  Why can't one nation's ships carry the soldiers of their friend?

Because I don't like it.

-WTH?  So what if you don't like it?  Why would you ruin everybody else's fun just because there's a feature you don't like?

Because it ends up being un-fun: playing optimally with this rule in place is a giant pain in the ass.

Hear me out: the big advantage of LongTurn is that you can take your moves at any time during a turn.  This (in principle) allows people with busy schedules, or vastly different schedules, to all play together even if it's not at the same time.

However, when you have multi-national forces, you MUST move them in coordination with your ally.  If my transports are carrying your marines, then we can't do anything unless both of us are online at the same time. 

-So what's wrong with that?  You have to coordinate for an invasion, and then it's done.

No! It's not done!  Your troops are now in a new place and can only redeploy or be reinforced by your ally's ships.  If you ever want to do anything with them again, you'll have to either coordinate with them (again), or waste resources on your own transports.

-Why do you hate freedom?  Nobody is forcing you to use allied shipping.  If you can't or won't coordinate, then don't.

Because coordination DOES give an advantage.  You can build far fewer transports than would be otherwise required.  Resources that could be spent on more armies.  But it also costs you real-world time and sanity.  Successful coordination with somebody who has a compatible schedule is fine, but you have no guarantee of that in your allies.  If coordination is difficult, it takes a lot more time.  If coordination is impossible, then you're at a strict disadvantage.

-Yeah, but isn't trading time for better outcomes the entire point of the game?  Like if I spend more time managing my empire, I should do better, right?  How is this any different?

Spending time on your empire is done at your own convenience.  You can choose how much time to spend and when you want to spend it and the only person impacted by your decisions is you.  When you are sailing somebody's troops around, or they are carrying yours, then your actions are dependent on each other.  Can't set sail until the troops are loaded.  Can't unload your troops if they haven't arrived at their destination.  It creates lots of delays and dependencies within a turn which otherwise would run fairly smoothly.

-But why single-out ships?  You have to coordinate sieges and city assaults too.  You can't get away from coordination.

True, but ships are the most egregious example of un-coordinated action being disastrous or impossible.  If you sail your ships over to an enemy coast, but your ally isn't online to unload them, then you're at risk of the entire invasion force being sunk at sea in sight of land.

-Welcome to life.  Shit happens.  Things go wrong and plans fail.  Why are you making a big deal about THIS thing?

Because I'm still a bit burned out from spending 2+ hours straight coordinating fleet logistics with my allies (on multiple occasions) in the LT57 Island Game.  We did it because it was efficient.  One player could focus on ship-building, another on making armies.  Focus on different tech areas and build the fast-moving transports from further away to pick up the armies as they got built and amassed locally.  Lots of good sensible reasons.

But it was a PAIN.  And if a game rule encourages behavior that's not fun, it's not a good rule.  If the possibility of ridiculous multi-national cooperation exists, then you're obligated to use it where it would give you an advantage.  But it's not an ability that's available to everyone (based on the whims of geography and schedule), and when it is available making full use of it can come at a high cost to the players involved.

But if NOBODY can carry allied troops in their ships, then players will be more free to act on their own time with fewer critical maneuvers that demand simultaneous presence.

-So that's it?  You're whining about a tough time you had in one game and now you want the rules to be changed to protect your feelings?

Yeah, basically.  But I don't think I'm the only person who has experienced this, just the only one bold enough to make the proposal.
I was inspired to write this when I was reading what panch93 wrote in the #introduction channel on the LongTurn Discord server.
Specifically this paragraph.

Secondly, another obstacle is finding the time to play. Even the shortest game of Civ requires a time investment and nobody can do it in breaks between other things. If you don't have at least half an hour of 100% concentrated attention at your disposal, it doesn't make sense even to start. LongTurn, on the other hand, can be played relatively casually and, if you can't spare a large block of time, it can be played in small chunks throughout the day. So, basically, if you are a working adult with a number of responsibilities, but you would still like to play a world leader in your favorite game, and do it with or against other people, this is the variant you want to play.

(emphasis added)

I realized that while largely true in many cases, this was absolutely NOT the case for allied boat logistics.  So in the interests of making the game more casual and noob-friendly, I thought I'd propose making boat-sharing illegal.  If I don't like it, then nobody can do it! smile

Also it neatly solves frustrating edge-cases like "What happens to units on an allied ship when the alliance ends and the nearest land belongs to a 3rd party?" 

So why not?


#2 2021-08-02 11:36:52

Posts: 1,025

Re: Controversial idea: Get rid of allied transport

... or...

History digression (that probably everyone knows, but no harm in reminding).

Dirin WWII the Western Allies were a vastly multinational force. However, there was only one man on the top of the command chain: Dwight Eisenhower. Each national army, by law, had their own supreme commander, but this was temporarily overridden for the purposes of that particular war.

End digression and you already know where this is going.

Patch: Allow player to cede command over his particular unit(s) to another player. Technicalities can have many forms, but the first one that comes to my mind:
- you give control for the next turn, order comes in power on TC and lasts until next TC
- you must do this for each individual unit, every turn (ctrl-V applies)


#3 2021-08-02 18:49:25

From: Silicon Valley
Posts: 183

Re: Controversial idea: Get rid of allied transport

Yeah, that would solve it, but replace it with a bunch of player-side micromanagement.

Maybe a simpler version of that would just be "My boat, my rules".  When an allied unit enters a boat, you get full control of it.

That said, it might be un-fun to have another player use your marines to assault a city, and doesn't solve the issue of having to wait for your ally to load their units into your boat before the operation can begin.  But how would you solve that?  Allow allied transports to kidnap units from your cities?  Maybe a command where units will attempt to jump into the first empty transport they see?  "Board next ship"

You can give the "board next ship" order to all units you want transported, and then everything else can be carried out independently by your ally, until you make landfall again.


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