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can't get the hang of how to play

6 years 1 month ago #1 by tbedell

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  • Bought SOW Gettysburg 150th Anniv edition almost 2 yrs ago. I studied the instructions and played the tutorials. I thought I understood how to play. However, I am frustrated by how much the game plays itself and I guess I just don't understand it. I have questions about how to play and don't know who to communicate with regarding answers. Any suggestions?

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    6 years 1 month ago #2 by RDBoles

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  • Run through the tutorials, they are excellent training for moving troops. Check out YouTube, the videos are a great source for battle and movement.

    Move Forward

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    6 years 1 month ago #3 by KG_Soldier

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  • Come try multiplayer.

    You'll learn quick.

    www.sowmp.com
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    6 years 1 month ago - 6 years 1 month ago #4 by Chamberlain

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  • tbedell,

    Here is a youtube video that has some interesting information on Scourge of War: Gettysburg

    Hope it helps :



    If you want to see anymore, google the game in you tube.

    Chamberlain

    -Col. Joshua Chamberlain, 20th Maine

    We cannot retreat. We cannot withdraw. We are going to have to be stubborn today
    Last edit: 6 years 1 month ago by Chamberlain.

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    6 years 1 month ago #5 by tbedell

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  • I think I have watched these but I could be wrong. Thanks, and I'll try.
    Am I wrong to think that this game pretty much plays itself? Only once have I even taken or held an objective and it seems the opposition just plays better. And, I do not get at all letting a scenario play on after the time limit because watching the computer play itself is boring and a total waste of time.
    Anyway, I will give the videos a look.

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    6 years 1 month ago #6 by tbedell

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  • I watched several of the YouTube videos and found that they confirm my impression that the computer runs things to a large degree and that even though you may instruct a group to do something the computer may not allow it because of its inherent concept of the scenario. I hear the players expressing my frustrations in similar situations. So, I guess that is just the way the game works; often there is no way to "win" a scenario because in historic reality the side you are playing could not win. If you are lucky and skilled sometimes you can learn how to win a scenario. Other times, you are just at the mercy of the game and how it was programmed.

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    6 years 1 month ago - 6 years 1 month ago #7 by RebBugler

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  • tbedell wrote: I watched several of the YouTube videos and found that they confirm my impression that the computer runs things to a large degree and that even though you may instruct a group to do something the computer may not allow it because of its inherent concept of the scenario. I hear the players expressing my frustrations in similar situations. So, I guess that is just the way the game works; often there is no way to "win" a scenario because in historic reality the side you are playing could not win. If you are lucky and skilled sometimes you can learn how to win a scenario. Other times, you are just at the mercy of the game and how it was programmed.


    True, scenarios that were lost historically are more difficult to win, but they can be. All scenarios released through NSD are tested thoroughly for victory conditions, and are not released until a Major Victory can be achieved within a reasonable amount of repeat playing times.

    Bugles & Flags Gettysburg - Toolbar, Flags, Scenarios, and More...
    Last edit: 6 years 1 month ago by RebBugler.

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    6 years 1 month ago #8 by tbedell

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  • So, what was the number a repeated plays that was deemed to be reasonable, and who makes the determination, and what level of expertise in playing games of this type was used as the criteria?

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    6 years 1 month ago #9 by RebBugler

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  • tbedell wrote: So, what was the number a repeated plays that was deemed to be reasonable, and who makes the determination, and what level of expertise in playing games of this type was used as the criteria?


    Don't want to sound vague, or like we're holding back secret testing procedures, but there are no set numbers of repeat plays because of the varying skills of the testers...some top testers can achieve a Major Victory with one or two plays on a grognard rated scenario, whereas other players take many more plays to achieve a MV.

    Like you quoted earlier, "If you are lucky and skilled sometimes you can learn how to win a scenario", let me add, somewhat lucky when more difficult variants don't appear, but skilled or experienced is the key, as this is a game of skill.

    Bugles & Flags Gettysburg - Toolbar, Flags, Scenarios, and More...

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    6 years 1 month ago #10 by Saddletank

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  • RebBugler wrote: somewhat lucky when more difficult variants don't appear


    This is a good comment as the AI doesn't do the same thing every time. There are variations of how it will approach the same tactical problem and this gives replay value to the scenarios.

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    6 years 1 month ago #11 by born2see

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  • RebBugler wrote:

    there are no set numbers of repeat plays because of the varying skills of the testers...some top testers can achieve a Major Victory with one or two plays on a grognard rated scenario, whereas other players take many more plays to achieve a MV.


    I just want to agree with RB. When I first asked to join the team I was told I wasn't experienced enough at that time so I made a point of getting my General's stars (win every scenario with a Major Victory). Not being one of those "Top Players" it was a challenge. But when I did it was a great feeling. The beauty of this game is it's replay value and the AI is wicked smart most of the time.

    Keep in mind the game is designed to simulate actual combat. Troops and commanders don't always do what you want them to do and the AI doesn't always react the same way. Add in the fact that many scenarios have different variants which aren't announced to the players, and you can have a real challenge on your hands. But that's what makes it fun.

    Start with the brigade level scenarios and work your way up. If you're having a problem with a particular scenario, do a search on the forum and you'll almost always find a thread about it with tips on how to win. There's a great community here and everyone is more than willing to help.

    B

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    6 years 1 month ago #12 by tbedell

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  • To RebBugler, Born2See and Saddletank:
    Thanks for the feedback. I guess I was just frustrated by how difficult scenarios are. I tried Turner's Gap (or whichever Gap) and found it impossible to win after 4 or 5 attempts, bringing to conclude you can't win it. Maybe 5 times more will bring me the needed skill. I had a similar problem with the opening sequence for Antietam in the Cornfield, and the opening sequence for Chancellorsville: succeeded once in the opening Chancellorsville sequence and failed many times, and have never been able to reach objective in opening Cornfield sequence. I guess I have not learned enough and am still a novice. Perhaps I have also underestimated the game's ability to come up with variations and outsmart the human opponent.
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    6 years 1 month ago - 6 years 1 month ago #13 by born2see

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  • RB's scenarios are always a challenge. If you listen closely you can hear the "Heh Heh Heh!" in the background as you go down to inglorious defeat. :evil: :evil: :evil:

    B

    "Those in whose judgment I rely, tell me that I fought the battle splendidly and that it was a masterpiece of art.” - George McClellan to his wife describing the battle of Antietam
    Last edit: 6 years 1 month ago by born2see.
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    6 years 1 month ago - 6 years 1 month ago #14 by Stellar Duck

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  • tbedell wrote: To RebBugler, Born2See and Saddletank:
    Thanks for the feedback. I guess I was just frustrated by how difficult scenarios are. I tried Turner's Gap (or whichever Gap) and found it impossible to win after 4 or 5 attempts, bringing to conclude you can't win it. Maybe 5 times more will bring me the needed skill. I had a similar problem with the opening sequence for Antietam in the Cornfield, and the opening sequence for Chancellorsville: succeeded once in the opening Chancellorsville sequence and failed many times, and have never been able to reach objective in opening Cornfield sequence. I guess I have not learned enough and am still a novice. Perhaps I have also underestimated the game's ability to come up with variations and outsmart the human opponent.


    As someone who struggled a lot with some scenarios before I got my Gettysburg star I have two bits of advice:

    If a particular scenario is being a bastard, do another one or even play some sandbox. I had so many issues with the cavalry stuff and sometimes I just skipped one and then played another one and suddenly some new idea occurred that I was then able to apply to something I was struggling with. Sometimes I just legitimately didn't understand some aspect of the game (that's my current Waterloo issue) or of the sort of warfare I was expected to wage so just experimenting helped a lot. I also read a lot of Wikipedia and a couple of books though I don't know if that helped.

    Second bit of advice would be to not keep running your head against the wall. First and foremost I think it's important to just enjoy the game. Consider just doing a sandbox on division level and have fun cursing at your brigade commanders and get comfortable with letting the AI do its thing. Sometimes it messes up and other times it'll surprise you and handle a situation that you didn't even notice. Your brigade commander may have a better idea about what's going on on his turf than you do so let him do his thing. And sometimes you need to take charge yourself.

    Basically, enjoy the game and get comfortable with it. It allows for a lot of freedom of play and for me, that's a big draw. But it was hard getting used to, coming from the Total War games.

    Edit: not that there is anything wrong with the TW games. They're just very different in scope and that required me to learn a lot of stuff and to unlearn a lot of stuff.

    Oh! Also fiddle about with artillery! I find arty the hardest part of the game so get used to it. Practice placing it and look at the lay of the land and consider what you shoot and with what. Again, sand box is your friend.

    Snatching Defeat from the jaws of Victory since 1982
    Last edit: 6 years 1 month ago by Stellar Duck.
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    6 years 1 month ago #15 by Saddletank

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  • Great advice. We are all 1861 Irvin McDowell's at first. It takes a lot of getting used to warfare before we become 1864 U.S. Grants.

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    6 years 1 month ago #16 by tbedell

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  • Stellar Duck:
    Thanks for your input. I appreciate everyone's advice. Part of my initial problem was coming to this game from John Tiller's Civil War hex-based game. I played those for several years and enjoyed them but decided the graphics on SOW Gettysburg looked more attractive. However, a very different game.
    I am getting more used to it after having watched 4 of the YouTube videos and reading everyone's advice.
    Tonight I set up a Sandbox scenario and won a major victory. I finally won last night the opening scenario to Chancellorsville which I have been unable to master. I am starting to pick up some ability. I never played Sandbox before but I am seeing the benefit. The game has apparently unlimited variations and I suspect that there are many more details to playing that I have not yet barely scratched the surface.

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    6 years 1 month ago #17 by Saddletank

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  • Playing MP against other humans will sharpen your skills quickly. There's a couple of online groups still playing SoW GB regularly or semi-regularly - ours and the GCM. There may be others. Our group had a great ACW game vs the AI last week on the Prairie Grove map.

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