1. Brace adds nothing to the game
The only rationale for keeping brace is to make it so that offmaps cannot trivially remove emplacements. However, even then, there are better approaches:
- Make emplacements lower risk-reward; e.g., nobody is ever going to waste a 200MU offmap to kill a 200MP mortar pit (with one mortar). Remove brace from 17 pounder and make it actually affordable; that will make it useful for once.
- Adjust the damage of said offmaps vs emplacements; Relic has already given enormous bonuses for offmaps to bypass brace, which is meant to protect against offmaps. This is madness. Just remove brace and remove those damage bonuses.
- inb4 somebody says that Brace is there to add micro to emplacements; it's not. It's an one click ability that requires no investment from the defender to use. If you want micro for emplacements just remove the FHQ aura and have people hop their squads in-out.
A successful defensive structure is not necessarily an immortal defensive structure. It's a defensive structure that's cheap enough to hold the adversary back for a long time to be worth it.
Trenches die in seconds to AT guns. However, they are still extremely useful just because they are affordable.
2. Mortar Pit design is just plain wrong
That's because from a design perspective:
- It is futile to try to flank Mortar Pits with infantry because they will brace at any point in time
- You can't force people to wait for tanks until they can take mortar pits down, because that's gratuitous cruelty
- Therefore, Mortar Pits have been designed in a way to be extremely vulnerable to indirect fire
- However, the entire British faction is ridiculously vulnerable to indirect fire spam; and if Mortar Pits can't protect the faction against it, why build them?
The mortar pit has 700HP, which means 9 mortar shells will take it down. The Pit also has a gignormous hitbox, which means that any shells fired will hit the pit. The Pit also has a massive target size, which means that AT guns can also join in the fun and s tart sniping the pit.
So, now we have ended up with a mortar that is:
- Practically invulnerable to infantry
- Can be sniped by anti-tank guns and tank destroyers
- Can be rendered useless by mobile indirect fire
3. Mortar Pit doesn't have to be so horribly implemented
The goal of the Mortar Pit is to provide indirect fire cover for a faction that is already vulnerable to indirect fire. Therefore, the Pit:
- Should be very cost-efficient vs indirect fire units
- Should be wrecked easily by successful infantry flanks
- Should be cheap enough so that you are not knocked out of the game for losing one mortar pit
- Should not be snipe-able by AT guns and tank destroyers, ffs
That way we avoid the trap of all-or-nothing foolishness of emplacements, and you have a system of counters that make sense.
4. How to fix Mortar Pits
- Reduce their hitbox size, so that indirect fire has to move closer to hit your mortar pits with their turbobarrages
- Fix the responsiveness of mortar pits, so that they can respond to indirect fire faster
- Add +75%-ish more HP to fully-upgraded mortars, so that they can tank indirect fire damage
- Completely remove armour from mortar pits so that they vanish to small arms fire in seconds
- Reduce target size to 1 so that it's no longer possible to sniper mortar pits with AT guns, and forces infantry units to fight at their optimal range (e.g., you shouldn't be able to snipe pits with MP40's from 35 range)
- Add an option of building a single-mortar pit for 200MP
- Remove brace, or reduce its duration to 5 seconds.
- Remove the garrison aura from FHQ; it only promotes sim city and nothing else
- Brace serves no useful purpose in emplacement design; any purpose that Brace can fullfill, picking the right stats would fill it better (e.g., does Pak43 need brace? Does FlakHQ need brace?)
- Brace is only there to make emplacements useless at performing their primary goal (e.g., 17-pounder is useless at anti-tank and mortar pits are useless at anti-indirect fire); unless you spam them of course
- Brace is harmful to the game, because it's only ever useful if you go sim-city; if you don't go sim city, brace is useless
So, I see no reason to keep the brace in a format that makes it last for longer than 5 seconds.