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Questions about some Units

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Level 8 Human Grand Admiral
Alignment: Chaotic
Location: Unknown
Posted on June 5, 2012 at 3:58 am

First of all, every one of the ranged units come in an open formation, however since you can change that to something more compact I would like to know if doing so affects their combat in any way. Their info almost always says something along the lines of "fight in an open formation" so I'm not sure as whether or not they would be pentalized for fighting in any other formation. I'm primarily concerned about possible damage penalties.

Also, I'm sure this question has been asked before but when a trireme is carrying a unit and gets in combat with another trireme, does the type of unit it is carrying make a difference to the damage boost? For instance, would a trireme with a hoplite always beat one with a spearman, providing they were alone? If so, does the unit's morale have any play, or is just their type(i.e., a native hoplite with a general vs. a regular mercenary hoplite - is there any difference in navel combat)?

Finally, does the type of unit affect the trireme's speed penalty - for instance, would a trireme carrying a peltist have a higher max speed then one with a hoplite? I've never seen any deviation, but I havn't looked intensively and thus could be missing a small change.

Level 17 Extraplanar gamer
Alignment: True neutral
Posted on June 5, 2012 at 1:34 pm

A unit's formation doesn't have an explicit effect on combat besides how the men are arranged on the battlefield. When we originally implemented the formation system we had grander plans for how they would influence the battle. Unfortunately these ideas never really panned out in Hegemony Gold which is why we're overhauling the formation system significantly in Rome.

I can see why the peltast description might be confusing. When the description says Peltasts 'fight in an open formation' it is supposed to mean that their formations are more widely spaced then those of a hoplite or phalangite. It's not supposed to reference a specific formation like 'Line', 'Column', 'Open', etc.

when a trireme is carrying a unit and gets in combat with another trireme, does the type of unit it is carrying make a difference to the damage boost?

Yes. The unit on board a trireme doesn't affect the impact damage but it will increase the combat damage done after the ships have collided. The game uses a combination of the unit's melee, missile and defense stats multiplied by their size to calculate the bonus to combat. As units have nowhere to run to, morale is not used for this.

does the type of unit affect the trireme's speed penalty

Yes, triremes with larger units on board will go slightly slower. If I recall the math correctly, a trireme with 60 guys on board will go half the speed of an empty trireme.

Level 8 Human Grand Admiral
Alignment: Chaotic
Location: Unknown
Posted on June 5, 2012 at 6:11 pm

Thank you rob, that was most helpful. I've always been concerned that arranging my ranged troops in line formations so I can get far more of them to bear on the enemy at once would have some sort of penalty on their damage output. Now I can blot out the sun with missiles with peace of mind :D

I also wanted to inquire about naval combat in Rome. Since Britannica will be on the map I know you guys have something in the way of vessels, at the very least for the Channel. Considring all the wonderful Roman improvements to the basic trireme(towers, the corvus e.t.c.), I was wondering if you intend to allow us to put those to military use somehow,

Level 17 Extraplanar gamer
Alignment: True neutral
Posted on June 6, 2012 at 1:45 pm

We're not planning any really major changes to the naval combat in Rome, but you will definitely be building ships to cross the channel as well as fight the Veneti along the northern coast of france.

As far as the design of the ships, I don't know at what point all of those improvements you describe were made, but the ships in Hegemony Rome are going to be a little different from your standard Roman ships. According to Caesar he actually found the Roman ships were at quite a disadvantage to those built by the gauls. Apparently, the Gallic ships were too thick to be breached by a ram, too maneuverable to be boarded and too tall, even with the towers Caesar built on deck, to be targeted easily with missile fire. Initially, Caesar managed to overcome these disadvantages using long bladed hooks that he used to cut the sail ropes of the enemy ships leaving them floundering and easier to board. Later on Caesar actually designed a hybrid Roman/Gallic ship that he used during his second invasion of Britain.

Level 6 Human Student
Alignment: Chaotic evil
Location: Latvia
Posted on June 7, 2012 at 11:07 am

I was under the impression the Gallic ships were more like early cogs than galleys. Is this true?

Level 17 Extraplanar gamer
Alignment: True neutral
Posted on June 7, 2012 at 1:27 pm

Yes, the Gallic ships had sails and no oars. One author I've read, Philip Freeman, compares their flat bottom profile more to a viking longship and suggests this allowed them to maneuver into areas where the Roman ships would run aground. Their sides also rose higher above the water making it hard for the Romans to try and board the Gallic ships.

When Caesar designed his own ships for his second crossing to Britain he copied the flat bottom of the Gallic ships to make it easier to beach his army.