Cancer Commander is probably on the short list of commanders that will be targeted for the supposed next Commander Revamp patch. (Along with Special Weapons). My guess is they'll probably do something like give it the Concentrated Barrage from Arty Regiment and call it a day. It would be cool if they could implement the buildable 17 Pounder but I don't know how you'd balance that with the base 17 pounders (I don't know if being able to double barrage stuff would be OP or not)
The 17 pounder is the large AT gun they can already build, whereas the 25 pounder is the Base Howitzer. I know which you meant, but other people might be confused.
The JCS uses 2x grenadier k98s and 3x grenadier g43s, trying to rebalance those would cause issues for the base grenadier squads, or the other option would be to make yet an another variant of those guns using different stats. We already have like 5 different G43s alone (gren, pg/storm, fusilier, jli, sniper).
And yes, the JCS is a one off elite squad, I'm totally fine with them being stronger.
There are already four or five different K98s in the game as well (Grenadier, Volksgrenadier, Panzerfusilier, Obersoldaten, and likely others)
I agree that this issue with G43s are even more pronounced , as at least all the K98s act as the same sort of gun, just with different accuracy and damage, whereas there are three different TYPES of weapon using the G43 model (A genuine sniper variant, the "light infantry" sniper variant, and what amounts to a faster-firing K98 with better moving accuracy), which all act completely differently to one another.
I do wish they at least gave the OST sniper a scoped K98, and the PGs/Storms/Jager Command non-scoped G43s (And leave JLI with scoped G43s) to communicate the fact that these two (three) units absolutely do not share similar weapons in the slightest. I don't know if unscoped G43s, or a scoped K98 exist in the files, however.
Light Infantry having scoped self-loaders is at least consistent.
The Boys ant-tank rifle has a similar issue, incidentally, either being a "sniper rifle" in the hands of the Sniper, or literally just an AT rifle in the hands of IS, with 0 distinction being made visually or thematically, the Sniper's rifle isnt even scoped.
All I'm saying is that guns with "variants" other than the scoped self-loaders at least share the same functionality between all variants, rather than them being completely different weapon types based on who holds them.
But if you read a bit more above then you can see I commented that this doctrine should lose emplacement health/armor upgrade and be replaced with some other ability, like access to mg bunkers. This would also make balancing emplacements easier in general as there will no longer be one doctrine that makes them even stronger.
It's the same deal as with trying to balance IS when there is bolster, one has to consider both states, same with regular emplacements and upgraded emplacements.
The problem is still that immobile defences are inherently flawed, and relying on the heavily is a recipe for a loss. Advanced Cancer makes them more durable because absurd durability is an immobile units' only defence. I agree that the aformentioned increased durability should absolutely be removed, as should CB, though I think the commander sort of needs an entirely different identity.
(I also still think Emplacements/howitzers etc should be relocatable, but I already have a thread on that)
Heavy howitzers are easily countered by doctrines, most noteably the be-all doctrines, but if no one picks a doctrine with an offmap heavy howi spam becomes extremely difficult to defeat, and it only gets worse as the game lengthens. This is the core reason why a lot of us were against the popcap reductions on the LeFH and the ML-20 a few patches ago. The problem wasn't the howitzers, but their counters being everywhere.
Honestly this is the main reason I'm making this suggestion. Reducing Howitzer range, while simultaneously making it less vulnerable to offmaps (through having more HP, and being able to be relocated) helps to solve both these issues. Howitzers will be more useful when the enemy has offmap "counters" to them, while being far less oppressive when they do not (due to having to be closer to the frontlines, which stops them being all but untouchable by the opponent's units)
"Manpower Density" isnt a real, meaningful statistic. This weird "All Ober" or "All Penal" army ignores basically everything about the way the game is played, and doesn't serve to illustrate anything that's actually relevant.
The closest thing to "Manpower value per popcap" you can actually argue as an useful statistic is the inherent efficiency of Vehicles vs Infantry, as the former cannot bleed manpower, whereas the latter can.
I agree that some units need their population costs rebalanced, as some units' high popcap relative to their usefulness often cause undue limitation to certain factions' build options. OKW vs SOV is rather a poor example though, as it's reasonably universally considered (As far as I know) that Soviet have a much better "population efficiency" than OKW does.
Armies don't need to be particularly larger than they are now, in most cases, its just that some factions can have a "stronger" full-popcap army than others.
The same munitions as Fusiliers and Riflemen, you mean? Both Fusiliers and Riflemen get extra range at vet, of course, but the three units are very different in their roles, which makes direct comparison of their grenades in a vacuum a little silly.
Either way, it's hardly fair to call the RGD-33 "barely worth using", which was the original statement.
I just want to add that the problem is that the base time to suppress is low. If it takes around slightly more than 1s to suppress at far range for all MGs, then when you add light cover + vet, it should be slightly bit more than 2s (0.5 Light cover modifier should mean double time + the increased suppression recovery modifier).
The maxim takes around 3/4s base at far and it feels like an eternity when light cover is involved.
NOTE: values taken from memory and just in case i took a look at Stein's spreadsheet as general reference.
https://coh2.serealia.ca/ is apparently a more reliable resource than Stein's sheets, and shows some rather interesting statistics. I'm not sure how or if they differ from Stein's though.
I don't mind replacing Counter Barrage on the LeFH18 but for the opposite reason, because it's really bad. I don't know what everyone is complaining about. It uses regular scatter and fires into the FOW so the chance to hit anything it's actually aiming at (and arty is usually not near other units either) is very small. Maybe it'll get a lucky hit on a squad passing by at best. In testing it took me over 5 counter barrage runs to kill a Katyusha and I ultimately had to bring the Katyusha really close to the LeFH for it to finally score a hit. You're way better off using the regular barrage instead.
That's strange, my experience of using it has been quite the opposite, honestly. When I build an LEFH (Which I only ever do to counter soviet howitzers/Katyusha, and the Land Mattress) it normally does really quite a good job of deleting Mortars and the Land Mattress (And ZIS). The Katyusha being killed is less guaranteed, but its an ever-present threat, and it happens with fairly good regularity. Had a game yesterday where my LEFH killed five vehicles (Several of those were likely to be the Land Mattress the enemy had being decrewed, but some were Katyusha) and reached veterancy five. Still lost that game, but that was due to restrictive popcaps preventing me from getting some of the units i desperately needed, and my teammate's insistence of walking blobs into Katyusha fire.
The main benefit of it, though, is that it's automatic. I can just leave my LEFH to its own devices at veterancy one, and focus my attention on the rest of my army (which is unfortunately a little gimped, OKW has some population issues as it is, and the LEFH is rather expensive. This is less an issue for OST, but still pronounced)
Has the Balance team considered making these units "movable" in this fashion, by the way? I realise it's a VERY big project, but I'm interested to know where you guys stand on this sort of issue. That was really the main part of this post, giving an excuse to get rid of Counter-battery on the LEFH (And absolutely on Brits) is a side-effect.
I know some commanders are picked pro activley, but then its upto you to force that battle plan to work, and upto the opponent to shrug it off and look for the weaknesses. (obvious example being getting light vehicles vs someone spamming assault grens).
I don't agree that someone "spamming" assault grenadiers being countered by a light vehicle is quite the same situation. The assault grenadiers in such a case are still entirely usable, the vehicle cannot be everywhere at once, after all, and other units can be used to support them (Such as the PAK, or simply having built one or two grenadiers for Fausts). They also still have their window of optimum use before such light vehicles arrive.
In the case of something like the Pak-43 though, one offmap or a fortunate Katyusha (or Stuka, in the case of Soviet weapons) means the end of the weapon, with effectively nothing you can reasonably be expected to do about it. I simply don't think an unit has any business being completely invalidated like this.
Brit having emplacements is an exception, because they have brace to help them deal with being immobile. So an off map on its own will never counter brits, but combined with several other things yeah it can help.
Zeroing artillery would be inclined to disagree with you.
IF, theoretically you were to have these units mobile, would probably be better if the inf pushed the gun at the speed of cloaked AT gun, so you cant just magic your really powerful static unit out of danger, even worse being able to retreat the squad! You would have units with high reward (they are powerful), and low risk.
This would, of course, be the absolute ideal scenario, yes, and I mentioned this in my OP post. The issue is that there isnt any functionality in the game to allow these units to move like a PAK-40 or other team weapon, especially not the Bofors. They simply aren't set up for that.
I'd agree that having the resultant squad move like a (non-retreatable) team weapon rather than an infantry squad would be idea, though. I don't know if there are any "non-combat" team weapons in the game that could be used as a proxy. A handcart with boxes, for example. Failing that, there's not much of a way around it other than simply disallowing retreat on that particular squad, but I don't know if that's necessary. Sufficient RA penalties would be enough to make such things quite risky, and the reasonably lengthy "pack up" and "deploy" times of these units would mean they cannot simply leave at a moment's notice, particularly if there is a nominal cost involved in them setting back up.
Again, look to the ISU/Elefant/Jagdtiger and the Sexton/Priest, they are effectively mobile versions of the PAK-43 and Howitzers, respectively. Even in the rework I'm describing, the "static" units are still much more vulnerable and immobile when compared to either of those two categories of unit.
I was just fooling around a bit with the Advanced emplacement doctrine, I haven't played with it for a long time anyway. I tried to use its counter barrage ability, expecting it to work like the axis counter barrage, but it didn't.
For those who are not familiar with the brit counter barrage, considering that very few higher ranked player touch this doctrine: according to description while it is activated on the base arty or mortar emplacements it fires a counter barrage on enemy artillery within range. Active for 45 seconds, costs 30 muni, disables construction or regular barrage.
So I went to test it a bit, and here are my findings:
-The base artillery has a limited range for this ability, in 4v4 it may not even cover half of the map.
-The base arty counter barrage fires only two, rather inaccurate shells, unlikely to kill anything.
-The mortar counter barrage works only within normal range, not the extended barrage range.
So yeah, in conclusion this ability is pretty useless. First, there is no indication of what is the exact range of base artillery. Second, even if you manage to find that 45 second time period when the enemy uses artillery then almost certainly none will be in range for counter barrage, so it's just a waste of 30 muni. Third, even if by some miracle they are in range they will most likely miss their shots. Oh, and it also disables unit construction or regular mortar barrage for that duration.
I know, this is perhaps the most hated doctrine in the game, but broken abilities need to be fixed regardless.
In my experience British base counter-battery fire is perfectly able to kill the units it targets. LEFH and LeIG i have tried to use within its range have been readily obliterated. Are you testing with both base buildings built? I was reasonably sure it fired more than two shells.
The fact that the ability has a limited range that you CAN'T EVEN SEE is extremely stupid, though. The ability appears to cover the entirety of Eindhoven, but I think that's about the extent of it. As much as I really dislike it (and that commander in general)that sort of inconsistency should be ironed out.
Despite being a timed muni ability, I honestly think the brit counter-battery ability is even more cancerous than the axis LEFH counter battery. At least the LEFH is an unit that can be actually killed, costs resources to produce, requires that it become vetted, and takes up (Kind of a lot, actually) population space. Neither ability is very good for the game, though, and I say this as someone who often makes use of the LEFH counter battery to help deal with garbage like the B-4 and Land Mattress.
These units are strong (in limited circumstances), because they are static, thats their trade off.
You are supposed to pick commanders that counter what your opponent is doing. So its about picking these static units when you know the enemy will have a harder time countering them, i.e. they have gone for commanders without off map bomb etc.
Also pak43 for example, would be way OP if you could move it forward as you gain ground, just pushing the enemy further and further back.
You aren't necessarily supposed to pick commanders to counter your opponent. Many commanders are picked proactively, and there's little reason a doctrinal unit should become completely worthless because an opponent "countered" it by picking one of the tens of commanders with any sort of artillery ability. Further: The Brits already have a nondoctrinal equivalent to the PAK-43 in the 17-pounder, It's hardly good design to have a faction's nondoctrinal units be completely invalidated by doctrinal abilities.
I go over the fact that these units would be able to be rebalanced if they had the ability to be repositioned. As it stands static units either need to be overpowered to be usable, or are otherwise effectively memes due to their vulnerability and complete inability to adapt to changing battlefield conditions. All signs point to complete immobility not being something fitting of CoH2's gameplay loop.
What makes the PAK-43 especially OP if it were able to be moved? Is its 10 additional range enough to force it to be entirely immobile relative to the armoured Elefant, Jagdtiger, and ISU (The ISU even having the ability to engage both heavy armour and infantry extremely effectively)? The PAK and 17 pounder may not even need 80 range if they were able to be repositioned, as especially the PAK would not need to be placed behind shotblockers/in the far back lines.
im not sure then... since arty gets extra range at vet 3 you could have it up closer to vet up then move it back to make better use of the range.
its too bad they didnt follow through with the idea of towing arty with vehicles, that woulda been choice
Veterancy would of course be rebalanced, definitely removing things like range increases, and the units simply wouldn't "need" them. Towing artillery and other units would have been a nice feature, but sadly lelic never bothered. Admittedly the scale of maps might make such things a little obsolete, there's a reason people don't generally use "transport" vehicles to simply transport units, after all, distances are too small.
It is possible to create a crew with veterancy level equal to the scuttled howitzer and have them rebuild a gun with veterancy equal to theirs. However, I'm unsure whether any "between-the-levels" experience could be retained this way.
Is it impossible for scuttling to simply eject a "Vehicle crew" and then destroy itself? (And subsequently have said crew "enter" the newly built weapon?) I suppose i can forsee bugs with the "forcing the unit to enter the 'vehicle' once built" part of the equation.