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The campaign AI in 1.6's feels odd and opaque, and I am worried about what will happen if attempts are made to double down on the 'victory points' system. 
Note my experience comes from playing the 1890 campaign up to around 1902. What I wanted was to build my economy, tech and fleet up through to the dreadnought era but the AI kept spamming torpedo boats, starting wars, and crashing everyone's economy. 

I don't know like I feel what the combat zones are, and I don't know how or why when i put a fleet somewhere, how or whether it can intercept enemy fleets or hamper the enemy in any way. I don't know why when i put a large fleet somewhere the AI can sometimes get scenarios where it gets to attack a single ship that was part of a fleet. 

I don't agree with the idea that tension between you and the AI just increases when not at war until the AI declares war at you regardless of how ready it is to fight. 
I don't agree with the idea that [since the current campaign is some form of 3v2] the AI can just tag team into wars and keep the campaign in a perpetual state of war
I don't agree with the idea that the player's only way to control how long war lasts is to pay half of their naval balance just to keep the AI's bloodlust sated for 1 turn. 

Right now it feels like I am playing dungeons and dragons but I don't get to see the dice rolls, I don't even know what the dice rolls are, and I don't really even know what rulebook is being used. 

My suggestions:

For the actual campaign world map:
1. Task forces can be created, disbanded, and managed in the fleet manager. Each Task force shown has an associated speed and operational range. 
2. Sea zones and trade lanes are clearly marked on the map. For example the Mediterranean theatre might be broken into several sea zones. The English channel might be one sea zone. 
3. Task forces are assigned: A port to operate out of, a Sea Zone, and a Mission [see below]
4. Missions include: Blockade ports, Raiding, Protect Trade, Patrol, Fleet in Being. 

Blockade: Stops all trade from that port, any TF operating in the zone can choose to sortie to break the blockade. Depending on the speed of the blockading port they can either end the blockade without fighting or be forced to fight. A TF with insufficient size may not be able to fully blockade a port. 
Raiding: Ships operate in the zone looking for convoys to attack. The attacker always has the option not to attack a convoy that is spotted. Number of ships, Speed, Range, and number of operating convoys affects likelihood of finding convoys. 
Protect: Ships will escort convoys. There should be more transparency around how many convoys are operating in a zone so you know how many task forces you need to cover each one. If the choice is made by the player or AI to abandon a convoy or the convoy protectors are all destroyed most of the trade ships should be lost as well. 
In being: Ships remain in port and sortie out to attack fleets spotted in the zone they have been assigned, if they have been spotted elsewhere. (i.e. if they are seen blockading a port, 
For later refinements: Their arrival in a battle may be late or even non-existent depending on the relative speeds and distances of the ships. 
Patrol: Ships designed to find other enemy fleets in the area, these can be used to assist raiders or to spot raiders. Smaller patrols can be used to assist fleets in being by giving them a better likelihood of preemptively intercepting fleets on favorable terms, larger patrols can engage fleets themselves. 

5. Multiple task forces can potentially participate in the same combat.
6. Be more transparent about the factors that affect the probabilities of success around the ability to engage, disengage, or even initiate fleet battles. 

For Diplomacy & Economy:

1. For now, remove alliances insofar as it bugs out the peace deal process. 
2. For any given war there are two variables with subcomponents:
War Exhaustion: Each belligerent has it's own War exhaustion. War Exhaustion increases the longer the war lasts. It can be decreased through relatively long periods of peace. War exhaustion gain is higher when a countries economy is being strangled. Large defeats or large victories can also shift war exhaustion.
War Score: Each War has a single war score that reflects the relative perception of the state of the war, it is done in a tug of war style where the degree to which their fleets have been damaged, destroyed, or their trade disrupted is taken into account.

Some combination of a war score that leans heavily in one direction or a high war exhaustion will force a peace deal. For early testing the exact amount should be transparent for the player. You can layer on unrest to the system when the player or AI tries to continue and/or initiate a war with high war exhaustion. 

3. Use the war exhaustion to prevent the AI from just looping back and forth into wars. 
4. The factors that cause countries to gradually lose relations with others should also be more transparent to players. Right now I think it's just deterministic and ticks upward during peace, which forces the AI into suicidal wars. These factors should include:
a. The size and growth of the navy; 'dominant' naval countries should be disliked and distrusted to some degree, countries that grow their navies rapidly should also be distrusted. One Caveat to this is to prevent a situation where everyone hates everyone simply because over time the cost and displacement of navies will grow. A good campaign indicator of relative naval strength as measured in displacement and/or number of capital ships and/or number of ships in general. Each country should have a goal of how strong relatively speaking they feel comfortable being, the country that tries to grow ahead *first* (i.e. suddenly increasing its naval budget) will take the biggest diplomatic hit. 
b. The harshness or magnanimity of peace terms should be factored in for countries views of eachother, as well as the initiator of the conflict. 

4. The AI should be asking itself the following when it is the one making a decision to declare war: 
a. Is my war exhaustion high? 
b. What is the relative economic and naval strength of the faction i am declaring war on? 
c. Who are or might be the cobelligerents? 

5. Refinement for later: Allow peace agreements to include controls on naval budget size, ship displacement, build holidays, or truces. 


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At the moment, tension rises based on your active ships being in proximity to other countries. The only way, as far as I've seen from playing as Germany, to avoid an increasing tension is to place all your ships in mothballs. Any active ships, no matter how far away or in what other state, still seem to generate tension.

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Posted (edited)
9 hours ago, SpecTRe_X said:

At the moment, tension rises based on your active ships being in proximity to other countries. The only way, as far as I've seen from playing as Germany, to avoid an increasing tension is to place all your ships in mothballs. Any active ships, no matter how far away or in what other state, still seem to generate tension.

got it

Edited by admiralsnackbar
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