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Captain Orso

Veteran Recruits Cost

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I've already searched through the forum, and I couldn't find this mentioned anywhere.

I noticed that the cost of buying veterans as replacements increases, depending on the number of stars--or maybe another characteristic--the unit has. EG during the same refit phase, buying veterans for one 3-star brigade cost $67 per man, but for a 2-star only about $48. Is this WAD (Works As Designed)?

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Hi Grimthaur, thanks for your reply and info.

So if I were going to add both veterans and inexperienced replacements, it would be better to add the inexperienced replacements first, because it will lower the experience of the brigade, making the veterans possibly cost less.

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You would think that (and I did for some time) but apparently it is not true:

It seems that doing vets first and thus having more vets into which to disperse the rookies (and thus the brigade takes a smaller experience hit) is more efficient for both stats and money.

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Damn! I didn't know I'd need to learn differential calculus to play this game :mellow: ... ;)

Thanks for the answer Quicksabre. it is of course correct that since adding veterans to a brigade doesn't change any of its stats, but if I know in advance exactly how many rookie and how many veterans I would be adding to a brigade, it would possibly be cheaper, because adding the rookies first possibly lowers the experience of the unit, which would then possibly lower the cost of veterans.

So, one would be paying experience for money.

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Well, I think the thread clearly shows that adding veterans first is far more cost effective.

The problem you must solve is how many veterans to add first.

Personally, I don't do this on a unit basis. I do this from an army perspective. Sure I want to maintain some elite units, but I am more concerned with the overall experience of my army. So for me, the folks who get the veterans first are those who, if I have to take all recruits, would suffer the most. By doing this I try to give the entire army at least a minimum efficiency rating.

For example, a Union recruit brigade will have an efficiency of around 10 or 11. In a major battle these folks will run at the sight of the enemy. ;) So once the unit has experienced combat, I want initially for him to be around 20 at the minimum.

Normally I create new units after a major battle. I then train them in the next series of minor battles. If I don't have enough resources to bring all my units up to strength, I will just add a few to my more elite units as I won't be using them in the minor battles. After each minor battle, they will get a few more veterans and hopefully, just before the next major battle, I will be able to fill them to full strength.

This way, when it is time to fight a major battle, I will have raised the quality of my entire army while at the same time preserving my best units.

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Here I'll show you what I mean.

This is my army playing on MG after Shiloh:

R4bHTZN.png

Notice the 1600 man units in 1st Corps. They have my best weapons.

After the 3 minor engagements leading up to Gaines Mill I was able to add new brigades, get them experience and add veterans to the 1600 men brigades. Here is my army getting ready to fight at Gaines Mill:

JnSXdsI.png

I was able to increase the size of my army from 26,790 men and 69 guns to 34,690 men and 80 guns. Notice I went from 14 infantry brigades to 17 and only Walton lacks at least 1 star and he is right on the edge of earning that. I added 3 new infantry brigades and they are all over 1 star quality. Of my 5 brigades with upgraded weapons and 1600 troops I was able to raise them all up to 2000 men using only veterans. A sixth brigade with good weapons was added but I was only able to get him up to 1900 men, making my 1st and 2nd Divisions of the first Corps the heart of my army. I also added a new artillery battery and got them up to 1 star and just before Gaines Mill, I bought with my reputation points the 20pdr Parrots. The Parrot battery doesn't have any experience, but I will keep him well behind the lines for Gaines Mill. I was also able to increase my supply from 33,615 total to 35158.

In Gaines Mill you can bring 20 brigades to start and 10 brigades of reinforcements. Was short 4 brigades... but I'm hopeful my army is ready.

Edited by LAVA
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Okay, what I didn't think of at first is that when you add veterans first to a brigade, they will cost more per man, but when adding rookies, the pool of veterans will be larger, and thus you will be diluting the brigade less, so you don't need to add as many veterans--less cost--to maintain the same level.

I'm still trying to figure out how to calculate in advance without having to Trail-n-Error™ the heck out if it per brigade. Grimthaur said the cost of veterans is based on

"(displayed exp - leaderexp)"

but I have no idea what this means. I'm sure the unit's experience bar does not determine the cost of veterans, because if I have a Brigade lead by a Bde.Gen. and the unit has 3 stars with 43 experience to next level, and put a Major in charge, the unit's experience bar goes down to (still 3 stars) 16 experience to next level, but veterans do not cost any different.

And some things simply don't make real sense to me. Trading leaders from higher rank with more experience, to lower rank with less experience changes the unit's experience(!!). Why should the unit's experience level go down, just because the leader is less experienced?

Anyway, I'm still looking for what the cost of veterans is connected with.

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Veteran cost is based on how high the stats are of that unit - Firearms, Melee, Morale, etc.  Also possibly the unit's experience and veterancy level as well.

As for units losing experience when you switch out commanders - all officers grant their unit an amount of experience (no effect on the unit's skills like Firearms, purely veterancy experience) based on that officer's rank and experience that sticks with that officer.  For example, a Confederate Colonel usually has enough experience combined with the Confederate's naturally higher rookie starting experience to grant a fresh brigade Vet 1 right off the bat without going into battle.  But switch that out for a lower ranked officer and they might not have enough experience to have Vet 1, and might lose that perk.

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On 11/10/2017 at 4:13 AM, The Soldier said:

Veteran cost is based on how high the stats are of that unit - Firearms, Melee, Morale, etc.  Also possibly the unit's experience and veterancy level as well.

As for units losing experience when you switch out commanders - all officers grant their unit an amount of experience (no effect on the unit's skills like Firearms, purely veterancy experience) based on that officer's rank and experience that sticks with that officer.  For example, a Confederate Colonel usually has enough experience combined with the Confederate's naturally higher rookie starting experience to grant a fresh brigade Vet 1 right off the bat without going into battle.  But switch that out for a lower ranked officer and they might not have enough experience to have Vet 1, and might lose that perk.

As a side note, this is a subtle thing to do when managing your army to figure out where exactly to put your officers to get the most bang for your buck. By just carefully swapping officers around you can effectively harvest 'extra' XP above a tier by downgrading an officer on one brigade and moving them to get another brigade up to another tier or just to shelve them and let someone lower get experience. A large roster of Brig. Generals is generally going to be more useful than having only a couple Maj. Generals and a bunch of Colonels

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On 11/10/2017 at 1:13 PM, The Soldier said:

Veteran cost is based on how high the stats are of that unit - Firearms, Melee, Morale, etc.  Also possibly the unit's experience and veterancy level as well.

As for units losing experience when you switch out commanders - all officers grant their unit an amount of experience (no effect on the unit's skills like Firearms, purely veterancy experience) based on that officer's rank and experience that sticks with that officer.  For example, a Confederate Colonel usually has enough experience combined with the Confederate's naturally higher rookie starting experience to grant a fresh brigade Vet 1 right off the bat without going into battle.  But switch that out for a lower ranked officer and they might not have enough experience to have Vet 1, and might lose that perk.

This is what I've figured out so far. This comes close, but it's not exact.

Find out what Efficiency number new recruits get by building a brigade (you may have to make a save beforehand and reload it later to not mess up your army organization). Since I only just started looking into this, I've gotten new recruits with an Efficiency number of 13 after one battle, and 15 after the next. It didn't matter which corps or division I dropped this new Brigade into, their Efficiency number stayed the same.

Exa01.jpg.7702ebf854b5d3cf089dda7f99c28f21.jpg

Find the unmodified Efficiency number of the Brigade you want to reinforce (subtract bonuses for unit training etc.--just look at the tool-tips of the training bonus) to get the unmodified Efficiency number. Calculate the Efficiency-Pool of the Brigade by multiplying the unmodified Efficiency number by the number of men to get the Efficiency-Pool. EG a Brigade with 1000 men with an unmodified Efficiency of 100 have an Efficiency-Pool of 100,000.

Now when you add new recruits to this Brigade you get a lower Efficiency. Example:

Recruit Efficiency-Pool: 500 x (15 x 2)* = 15,000 * Why the "x 2" is necessary I don't know, but it makes the calculation work, of comes very close to being exact, and without the "x 2" the calculation is way off.

Veteran Brigade Efficiency-Pool with 1500 men and unmodified Efficiency 37: 1500 x 37 (-5 from listed Efficiency because Efficiency Cource training adds 5 to Efficiency) = 55,500

Exa02.jpg.4eace8b1ea198468ef50fdb6d28151b7.jpg

New size of Brigade: 1500 + 500 = 2000

Exa03.jpg.7929213081364a63ab18a1da7a19187b.jpg

New Efficiency-Pool: 55,500 + 15,000 = 70,500 / 2000 = 35 (35.25). The real value is 36, but this is as close as I've come so far.

The other (bigger) problem is the Experience loss. In this example the Brigade starts with **28/100 (tool-tip) and ends with *96/100. To maintain the training perks you cannot reduce experience lower than **0/100, and in this case that means not more than 427 non-Veteran recruits.

Exa04.jpg.205c110b5a98f72783e0c7219abca620.jpg

So, how to calculate how many Veterans and Rookies to add to the Brigade so that the Brigade does not lose an Experience bonus without having to fidget around with it.

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8 hours ago, Hitorishizuka said:

As a side note, this is a subtle thing to do when managing your army to figure out where exactly to put your officers to get the most bang for your buck. By just carefully swapping officers around you can effectively harvest 'extra' XP above a tier by downgrading an officer on one brigade and moving them to get another brigade up to another tier or just to shelve them and let someone lower get experience. A large roster of Brig. Generals is generally going to be more useful than having only a couple Maj. Generals and a bunch of Colonels

What do you mean by a "tier"?

What does "harvest 'extra' XP" mean?

The only thing I can figure is, if a Brigade lead by a Bde.Gen. has **75/100 (Experience bar tool-tip), you could replace him with a leader with less experience, while still maintain the two stars, and thus the training perks. Then take this highly experienced leader and give him to a unit with less experience to push it to gain an extra star.

You might be able to get a few units an extra star, and thus an extra training bonus, but ultimately you're just shifting experience around.

Where does the "extra" experience come in?

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On 11/9/2017 at 4:28 PM, LAVA said:

Here I'll show you what I mean.

This is my army playing on MG after Shiloh:

R4bHTZN.png

Notice the 1600 man units in 1st Corps. They have my best weapons.

After the 3 minor engagements leading up to Gaines Mill I was able to add new brigades, get them experience and add veterans to the 1600 men brigades. Here is my army getting ready to fight at Gaines Mill:

JnSXdsI.png

I was able to increase the size of my army from 26,790 men and 69 guns to 34,690 men and 80 guns. Notice I went from 14 infantry brigades to 17 and only Walton lacks at least 1 star and he is right on the edge of earning that. I added 3 new infantry brigades and they are all over 1 star quality. Of my 5 brigades with upgraded weapons and 1600 troops I was able to raise them all up to 2000 men using only veterans. A sixth brigade with good weapons was added but I was only able to get him up to 1900 men, making my 1st and 2nd Divisions of the first Corps the heart of my army. I also added a new artillery battery and got them up to 1 star and just before Gaines Mill, I bought with my reputation points the 20pdr Parrots. The Parrot battery doesn't have any experience, but I will keep him well behind the lines for Gaines Mill. I was also able to increase my supply from 33,615 total to 35158.

In Gaines Mill you can bring 20 brigades to start and 10 brigades of reinforcements. Was short 4 brigades... but I'm hopeful my army is ready.

If I could prevent the catastrophic losses I'm constantly suffering I'd probably do better at building up my army :(

These RTS games are really not my thing. While I'm concentrating on one area, so I know when to charge my melee troops in, or prevent brigades from being slaughtered, elsewhere everything is going to hell.

The other thing the bugs the heck out of me, is that, especially on very large maps with lots and lots of woods, the enemy is constantly sending single brigades of infantry on suicide mission to capture some mission objective far behind my lines just before time runs out. So I've nearly wiped out the enemy army at the main objectives, but I lose or get a draw, because some rouge brigade is sitting way back behind the lines, waiting for me to turn a corps around and wipe it out... but oh, the clock just ran out :angry:

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1 hour ago, Captain Orso said:

If I could prevent the catastrophic losses I'm constantly suffering I'd probably do better at building up my army :(

These RTS games are really not my thing. While I'm concentrating on one area, so I know when to charge my melee troops in, or prevent brigades from being slaughtered, elsewhere everything is going to hell.

Nope... it is not easy. Here are some tips:

1. Play at half speed. Every now and then pause and take in the entire battlefield so that you have the "big picture" of what is going on. I went through the entire Union and Confederate campaigns on Brigadier General level playing at half speed.

2. Watch videos of other folks playing the game, specifically the next battle you are going to fight. There are lots of video on YouTube; take advantage of that. For the Union there are a number of folks who have played the entire Union campaign:

https://www.youtube.com/user/BenjaminMagnusGames/videos

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsJCJD1tAzTZ1eUUiskH-9w/videos The History Guy

I also recommend watching Aetius, although he is playing on Legendary, as he devotes entire videos to army making and more importantly, gives his rational for why he does things. His army building videos are real gems.

https://www.youtube.com/user/aetius9/videos

3. Remember, as the Union you are at a terrible disadvantage fighting the Rebs in cover. Look for areas where you can fight them in the open and bring lots of artillery. Avoid melee if you can and when they charge you, fall back the unit and draw the unit into a crossfire. I only use melee playing as the Union when I have no other option and I must either protect my artillery or take an objective.

4. Practice, practice and practice to make sure your troops do what you want them to. With infantry always move your troops by position. Do not click on an enemy unit to engage. The reason you do not want to click on a unit to engage is because if that unit routs... your unit will follow after him and the next thing you know you have one or two brigades in the middle of the battlefield, out of position and being slaughtered. If you do feel you need to give a unit an order to fire on a particular enemy, once it begins to do so order it to "Hold." I do a lot of micro with artillery and when you click on a unit to fire at, sometimes, if you don't do it properly, the unit will move to that position. So make sure whenever you order firing... the unit that is being firing on turns red and you see a red firing line indicator. In fact click on the troops you wish to fire on and not it's icon. Skirmishers are a bit different, as you many times want them to continually harass a moving unit, but be aware that the mechanics of the game could draw them into a trap. Keeping control of your troops is probably the most important aspect of fighting battles.

5. If you are not satisfied with a battle result play it again. I normally save at the very end of the battle when you return to camp and before you make adjustments to your army and again after I am prepared to play the next battle. After I play that battle I review it and think whether I am satisfied with the result. Could I have done it better? If so, I just go right back to my pre-battle save and play it again. Should I have brought different troops? If so I go back to the first save and try to adjust my army and then re-fight the battle with my new force and see what happens.

Now, I am playing the Union on Major General (hard) level and there is a real make or break point in the campaign when you hit the duel major battles of Gaines Mill followed by Mulvern Hill. IMO, if you want to continue on a successful campaign you must win both of these battles without taking major losses. The first time I fought Gaines Mill I won. But I thought I could do better so I re-fought the battle and did better. Cheating? I suppose, but my execution was poor and when I re-fought the battle I used the same tactics but with better execution. I then moved on to Mulvern Hill. Mulvern Hill is a really tough battle. I'm probably behind because I was only able to bring 26 of the allotted 30 brigades to the battle, but I felt my forces were ready to win this battle and I still do. I lost the first time I played the battle and then I won the second time I played the battle. So I said to myself, this is a really good battle to practice with and try different tactics. I have fought the battle now at least a dozen times and have only won twice. And if necessary, I will fight it another dozen times until I feel I have reached the point where I am skillful enough to win that battle handily.

So... do not be discouraged by your efforts. Think hard about your results and work to do better. Possibly you need to go to a easier level of play. In this game, there is no shame of playing at the Colonel level. Possibly you need to reconsider how you play. If so, watch the videos of others and see how they play. And possibly, like me, you need to learn every little insight on how to play the game to get the best possible outcome.

Whatever, there are always room to improve but in the end, it is just a game. Having fun is the only real result you should shoot for.

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3 hours ago, Captain Orso said:

What do you mean by a "tier"?

What does "harvest 'extra' XP" mean?

The only thing I can figure is, if a Brigade lead by a Bde.Gen. has **75/100 (Experience bar tool-tip), you could replace him with a leader with less experience, while still maintain the two stars, and thus the training perks. Then take this highly experienced leader and give him to a unit with less experience to push it to gain an extra star.

You might be able to get a few units an extra star, and thus an extra training bonus, but ultimately you're just shifting experience around.

Where does the "extra" experience come in?

That's exactly what I meant. You can fine tune the performance of your army by shifting experience around. This is most relevant when you have a large army in play shortly before/after a Grand Battle but is always something to watch. Spending a few minutes doing so can get +10 to a few brigades from time to time, which isn't nothing.

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On 11/12/2017 at 3:20 PM, LAVA said:

 

8<

 

2. Watch videos of other folks playing the game, specifically the next battle you are going to fight. There are lots of video on YouTube; take advantage of that. For the Union there are a number of folks who have played the entire Union campaign:

https://www.youtube.com/user/BenjaminMagnusGames/videos

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCsJCJD1tAzTZ1eUUiskH-9w/videos The History Guy

I also recommend watching Aetius, although he is playing on Legendary, as he devotes entire videos to army making and more importantly, gives his rational for why he does things. His army building videos are real gems.

https://www.youtube.com/user/aetius9/videos

 

8<

 

Thanks for the elaborate replay LAVA. One of the biggest issues I was having, was trying to play catch-up. I started playing a campaign I had started months before, and didn't have a well built army. I had some pretty bad battles and just couldn't get up to strength really.

Looking at the YT channels you suggested, it seems that Benjamin Magnus Games has the best grasp of the game. The History Guy obviously doesn't understand some of the concepts, although he isn't bad, but I'll not be looking at his play for advice.

The one major thing about BMG, especially in the late war battles, he's got his army build to the max. 2500 man brigades in every division mostly with the best weapons, if not simply very good weapons, with some few brigades setup with Spencers, IIRC. Basically he's simply erasing the enemy anywhere they stop to fight. A few volleys from 7500 rifles and a defending brigade simply melts away. Rinse and repeat. From what I've watched, after the opening phase of the battle he simply leaves his artillery behind, not even trying to bring it along, because it would simply slow him down, so the rest of the battle he's wiping out artillery units with rifle fire with near impunity. While his brigades take 5 or 10 hits from artillery, 2 or three rifle brigades take the battery under fire, causing 100+ kills with each volley.

In short, BMG wins every battle in the barracks long before the first shot is fired, which is how you're supposed to fight a war. Thumbs up to him.

 

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If memory serves, Benjamin Magnus tends to have pretty bad kill ratios (still positive, though) as a result of that, because he's fielding a lot of green troops early and just smashing his troops into theirs for awhile. His ratios may improve but I never really watched his stuff in-depth.

Unfortunately I'm being pretty slow uploading my own campaign else I'd try and toot my own horn a bit. ;P Fredericksburg should be going up this week, at least.

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I haven't nearly watched all his videos. In fact only a couple of the last battles. So what kind of nastiness he got up to in the beginning I have no idea :P

*ahem* if you post your YT channel it would probably make it easier to find your videos ;)

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2 hours ago, Captain Orso said:

I haven't nearly watched all his videos. In fact only a couple of the last battles. So what kind of nastiness he got up to in the beginning I have no idea :P

*ahem* if you post your YT channel it would probably make it easier to find your videos ;)

*cough* My Union campaign playlist is here:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YVwXdrQMpYA&list=PLWscnbIydjzTX3fTsz19lqowRwZ3kuogE

Just a slow roll with a couple battles a week, aiming at showing off basic mechanics and the like and what you can do with a small, focused army. It's geared more towards people who are still learning the game's fundamentals, which is why I'm only doing this on Brig Gen.

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I've watched tons of videos from many different folks, but there aren't a lot of folks who have completed campaigns posted. That is why I linked to the History Guy and Benjamin Magnus because they had completed the Union campaigns.

The missing element here is someone posting the Union Campaign on Legendary. I gave Legendary a shot and I was going okay until I hit the twin major battles of Gaines Mil and Malvern Hill. It became obvious that I just wasn't ready for that so I have been playing on Major General difficulty and have completed the battle of Fredericksburg. I am even more convinced that Gaines Mill and Malvern Hill are the real test as to whether or not you have positioned yourself army wise to have a good chance at finishing the campaign.

At this point I have also been working on recording my games for YouTube and once I am happy with my ability to produce videos for the public without completely embarrassing myself, I will return and start another Legendary Campaign.

From my perspective, there was a great deal of difference between playing on BG and MG. All the factors start combining and you have to be able to use everything at your disposal. As the Union you not only want a large army with good weapons but a reasonably experienced one as well. From army management to battle management, you need to really understand how this game works.

It's a great experience playing this game and it is also really fun watching how other folks meet that challenge.

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From my experiance with RTS-games watching videos isnt a good substitute for learning a game. It can help if you are stuck at a certain point but where is the fun/challenge/learning experiance if you replay a strategy someone else posted? If you dont use your ingenuity, you just shorten your personal time playing the game. Watching videoguides can also "look" you in a certain path and you might overlook other - better - ways to play a battle. That is why most RTS-games are successfull on a "pro-level" for a short time and sink into meaninglessness, once they are figured out: they become dull.The good thing in UGCW is, that you can try different approaches. And at least for me its much more rewarding to see that your own idea of winning a hard battle works out or even to understand why it didnt work.

If you still want to see legendary union, you could try Aetius. But he has his own very artilleryheavy playstlye plus he plays "ironman", resulting in draws or losses - and by that in a weaker army - where most would replay the battle. I wouldnt recommend History Guy (only if you are interested in the actual CW) or Benjamin, because - imho - they have too many flaws in their gameplay. For legendary CSA Col.Kelly is quite nice, or also Aetius.

But of course - as LAVA said - its really fun watching how other guys approach the game.

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CoL Kelly's CSA campaign was very instructive, improved my gameplay / fun immensely. However, very few videos out there cover effective use of artillery. Read the nice article on Steam ofc, but not seen any really good videos, any recommendations?

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Actually I have been using the Battle of Mulvern Hill on MG, and how I use artillery to hold my position and win the battle convincingly to create my first YouTube video.

Unfortunately, I screw up so much, that I have yet to make a video of that battle which I am satisfied with. For example, one time I played the battle and everything went really well, but at the end, I forgot to show how well my artillery did in the after action report you get. *sigh*

Perhaps when I get back from vacation I can try it again....

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You can always select each battery individually and then click the history button to show how many kills they scored and how many deaths they suffered, individually.

I find it unfortunate that the battle end display isn't always displayable. That would be a really nice feature.

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