dutch against expert AI Turky
I rushed the Turky, and failed. Then I suffered from overwhelming attack. I sustained and won.
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Not professional. any recommendation?
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This is an interesting one to critique, not-least because it offers innumerable failures to review and which can easily be made ‘Categorical’ and because the overall reality of all that transpires is crystal clear.
That you ‘won’ this one can be said only by a certain stretching of the term, the reality is much more that the Turks lost it and much as if they had done so intentionally.
The Ottoman’s incompetence here is phenomenal – I’ve not previously seen such glaring stupidity rooted in so striking an instance of ‘mercifulness.’ (Certainly not on either ‘Hard’ or on ‘Expert’).
On this point, I would very highly recommend to you Felix Hermansson’s “Draugur AI,” which will for the greatest part put an end to this sort of charade.
If interested in trying it, you can find it in the “AI Files” (Download) Section here at HG.
It Will change your overall experience and give you an enemy who wants to destroy you and one that will give it its best shot.
This did Not happen in this case. These Turks from the very beginning to the end never seemed willing or intending to do anything more than keep your colony reduced in size and output – there was never any meaningful attempt made at destruction.
That you “won” owes more to this fact than anything else. With its just measure of due recognition one can also credit your tenacity, which seems to have been the only thing you really had with any consistency or conscious-application.
Your failures here are many and, to my view can be categorized in three fundamental categories.
a) * Colonial planning / engineering (Horrible ‘layout’ of your colony construction).
b) * Force Mismanagement (Extremely poor).
c) * Marshal ineptitude (Absence of any meaningful Strategic and Tactical consciousness & reasoning & above-all else, Target-prioritization).
Let me try develop these points of critique further.
a) * The manner in which you constructed (lay-out) your colony here appears totally random, ad hoc, without any thoughtful reflection at all. Bearing in mind that this is a Very tiny (map) field area and that space is at a premium – even so, you neglected the space to your ‘rear,’ particularly for the placement of your key economic buildings (Banks ), tho’ you did at least place your factory there which was prudent whether that choice was as random as all the others, or deliberate.
Other than the factory, the only other exception might be the placement of your Fort. While “ok” in terms of presenting a formidable barrier to the southern approach to your colony, its more finite-position in terms of the terrain was not ideal – (more below on ‘impeding movement on interior lines’).
Such a broad scattering of your buildings is a gift to a determined & aggressive enemy, since they can attack them even piecemeal, at relative leisure, and you only increase their opportunity to both ‘see them’ and to attack them before you can maneuver your force(s) to counter them.
This will also often lead to making a critical choice that is not an easy or pleasant one to need to make Ever – for any commander: to divide your force(s) to counter one threat (attack), or to send your main (or sole) Force to counter a threat while sacrificing the buildings and/or units of some other sector.
It is a costliness to yourself that is totally unnecessary – whether it proves merely irritating or fatal.
Likewise, much of your building placement here is an impediment to your own movement (interior lines) and does nothing whatsoever to impede the enemy’s (exterior lines) of movement.
You would, in my opinion, be well served – particularly on such tiny maps – to think more in terms of real colonial towns and villages with a “Town Center,” and construct the whole in terms of blocks of buildings with functional ‘streets’ between them, keeping in view & mind that the streets should be effective avenues for YOUR troop movements on your interior lines (how to get my army from point A to point B in the shortest possible amount of time).
You further aggravated this failure with the construction of your wall(s) (especially in the location of the first one built conjoined to the Native Village).
The placement was either horribly thought-out, or not thought out at all.
It too could never have effected the enemy in any meaningful way, but was an impediment to the speed and fluidity of your own movement – the more so as you constructed only a single gate in that wall section. Do remember that a Gate is just as strong as a wall section without one, so make ALL your walls as porous as you can afford (wood cost) if you are going to have them at all.
(I always have walls myself and think it unforgivable not to have them).
Likewise, partial walling is a mistake 99.99% of the time – especially if you are fighting AI – and the more so if you have no colonial engineering “plan” for your colony construction, and you have key economic buildings left exposed in unprotected areas, etc.
By “partial walling” I mean the construction of any ‘wall sections’ which do not encompass / enclose your Colony completely (“air tight”).
Failing to complete the ‘circuit wall’ only creates avenues of probable attack.
This is so predictable against AI, that you can even engineer opening(s) in your walls and set up to receive him at that / those open point(s) of entry. (Doesn’t always work, but it does more often than not).
b) * Force Mismanagement:
This is just abysmal here. It will improve over time I suspect if you watch the tactical nuances and realities of actual RT combat closely and take notes.
One serious failure I note in this regard is the manner in which you use and move your guns.
Trusting you know the difference between a limbered and unlimbered field gun, I will suggest to you – Always keep your guns limbered unless they are either engaged in combat or combat is imminent and you know when within seconds and where within a matter of a few yards / meters and your guns are Already in the ideal location to receive them.
Unlimbered guns take too long to limber and too-long to move any meaningful distance when-unlimbered.
If you need your guns somewhere else Now – not in two or three or five minutes – keep them limbered. They unlimber much more quickly than they can re-limber.
When an enemy has multiple unit types on the field in range of your guns – target priority should as a Rule always be: guns, infantry, horse.
Use your infantry to support your guns by killing units in the reverse order; horse, then infantry, then guns if any are left AND you are losing guns to them at that point.
Keep your units together as much as is ever humanly possible. Form them in Divisions, Battalions or Brigades, but keep them together. Concentration of fire is key & critical to tactical success.
The ideal formula is ALWAYS – kill many, lose none. This never works in practical reality of course, but it should always be your Aim.
Minimize your losses, maximize the enemy’s losses. Very simple – in concept. In practical reality to achieve this, Concentrate your fire.
Aside from your initial ‘attack’ (which above you describe as a “rush,” but which I didn’t see as a ‘rush’ but more as an early, limited retaliatory strike) and aside from ‘end game’ when you hit him with 13 field guns and 13 pikes (later bolstered by additional units pushed to the ‘front’), you really had no Offensive Operations at all, and all you ever did was reactionary.
That’s not a bad thing in-itself – it can even be an Extremely effective strategy if you want a war of attrition and prepare yourself to win that way – but, here, you weren’t well-prepared for any of it, and it was extremely costly.
Had this enemy Wanted to Destroy you, he could have with not much of a great exertion. I believe if you repeated all of this one against the Draugur AI, you would lose (doing everything exactly the same way you did it here).
If you are going to be essentially ‘just’ reactionary and defensive – BUILD your colony Defensively (Always do that!) as well as create an Army Designed for Colonial Defense.
Actually in this latter regard, you did ‘ok’ here – by producing an appreciable number of guns and supportive infantry. You mostly just need improve the Ways in which you Employ them.
c) * Continuing here from the latter observation made above:
I never saw anything resembling a “Strategy.” Everything on your part here seems entirely reactionary and (more-or-less) randomly exploitative.
You repeatedly failed to follow up your few tactical gains. Not least of which was the long-served insult of the enemy having taken Your Trade Route Trade Post, as well as his own – neither of which you ever targeted for removal. Neither did you ever attempt to build a Trade Post.
At the very least, you should have deprived him of ‘yours’ (the one in your immediate sector).
Again, I’ll repeat the importance of thinking in terms of Target prioritization. Prioritize your targets. All enemy units are “Not created equal.” Some Need to die before others. Kill them first.
As a General Rule, kill them in the order of the ranking of their lethality. Exception to this rule should only be spatial – if less lethal units are in range before the more lethal units still ‘coming up to the front,’ kill the ones in range first since this is tactically a Time-Space advantage.
I Know this all sounds ‘common sense’ when said in these terms – but a Commander needs to be Aware of them While combat is unfolding.
The same critical imperatives apply to enemy buildings as well.
Knock them out in the order of the ranking of their threat to your CURRENT Operations.
i.e. FIRST building to go if at all possible should always be Artillery Foundery. Whether they have guns already extant and tearing up your assault force or not. Kill that building before it can produce any More of those! THEN kill those guns they have working ‘now.’ (Exception to this rule for me is ONLY if the number of guns they have working “Now” are sufficient to Destroy my entire force before I can both kill the foundry AND kill them).
After that, kill Barracks and Stables –in the order determined by the units they are producing & relying on the most – if they’ve been producing more Cav. than Infantry – kill the stable first, etc…
After that – target any Towers.
After That, kill the TC’s.
After that – start a systematic dismantling of the economic infrastructure; Mills, Plantations, Banks – and cut down their civilians left & right…
Think and engage systematically.
Don’t “squander” Force, not even any individual unit. Every soldier you Lose, should have brought you some advantage somewhere – or it is just an error.
Not every “advantage is created equal” either. Some aren’t worth paying for at all. Just because you Can get an advantage doesn’t make it the Right advantage for the time and/or place and/or circumstances, etc.
Patience is a virtue and understanding the overall strategic context of the ‘War’ as a whole is the Master-virtue.
To this latter point, I will add in closing – yet again – Recon! Recon! Recon!
KNOW the Field.
Especially on these tiny, itsy-bitsy little ‘fields’ there is no excuse for not having (explored and) “Seen” the entire land-mass – Early.
Know where Everything is.
Keep scouts constantly moving to check on the enemy if that is at-all possible (it’s darn hard! ..but it is literally invaluable when you can do it).
The early ‘loss’ of your Explorer here, at the south-western periphery of the enemy colony I find inexcusable as well.
Count yourself lucky that you were Allowed to go rescue him so late and get him safely back to your colony to replace your lost (one & only) TC. – without which you would have been defeated sure as Sunrise.
That too was a gift from this half-hearted enemy.
All of the above is of course, merely my own view, thoughts and observations – and the few suggestions are given in good faith with sincerity. Take or leave it all in whole or in any part as suits and serves you best …
&nd I close only wishing you many another good War and the laurels of Victory.
Do check out Felix’s Draugur AI tho’ – I think you might really appreciate the stiffened challenge from an enemy that Wants you dead.
Thank you for review, and the AI recommended.