Sunday, 8 November 2015

Campaign Backlog

Campaign battle set in Spain

I aim to complete one campaign move each week.   And over the previous six years I have pretty well achieved that timetable, with breaks for holidays.

However this week I have had to impose a campaign pause in order to clear a backlog of battles to be wargamed.   It is only the second time that I can remember having to do so.

The aim of the campaign is to provide battles to wargame.  I have designed it to do so, without causing this type of problem.   However the direction of the campaign is in the hands of the twelve commanders and they decide where and when battles will be fought.

I have recently made drastic changes to the campaign, which has resulted in this backlog.

First I changed the tactical map so that the towns were further apart north to south.   This makes command and control more difficult, but it also is more likely to provide more smaller battles.

Second I changed the victory conditions for each campaign phase.  Previously a commander had to take, and hold, the city in the centre of the map.  But he also had to defeat the enemy army.   This resulted in the more cautious commanders taking a long time to concentrate their army and then moving very slowly to battle.

The new victory conditions are to take and hold the city for five campaign days.   This rewards the more aggressive player who makes a dash for the city.  It also makes it dangerous to take too long to prepare the attack.   Because if it then fails there is not time for a long recovery and to plan a second attack.

I have also set the number of days for each campaign phase to ten, with the option to extend it to twelve.   Previously there was no limit.

The result is a spate of battles to be wargamed.   And because four of the six campaign phases started at the same time, the initial battles all happen on the same day.

All six campaign phases run to the same timetable.   It is possible to have one or two days between the six phases, but no more than that.   The campaign diary, which includes daily updates on each campaign phase, is published three days after completion of that campaign day.   This ensures that by the time the detailed map is published on the diary blog the information will be three days late.   But it does mean that all six phases have to work to the same timetable.

Still, better to have too many battles to wargame than none at all.

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