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Falling Sky: The Gallic Revolt Against Caesar» Forums » Strategy

Subject: new to COIN - a couple of questions rss

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olivier hertout
United Kingdom
Bedford
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I am an experienced wargamer but totally new to COIN. In my first game of FS, I tended to gather big armies in single areas, whereas I noticed in examples of plays of different COIN games that areas are usually contested by different factions. What is the point in this game to leave pieces in minority?

Next question : apart from battle and scouting, are there other circumstances in which pieces are revealed ? What is the advantage / disadvantage of revealed pieces ?

Sorry if these questions seem really obvious to experienced COIN players - I'm relying on you to make me more proficient!

Thanks,

Olivier
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Benji
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avronel wrote:
I am an experienced wargamer but totally new to COIN. In my first game of FS, I tended to gather big armies in single areas, whereas I noticed in examples of plays of different COIN games that areas are usually contested by different factions. What is the point in this game to leave pieces in minority?

Next question : apart from battle and scouting, are there other circumstances in which pieces are revealed ? What is the advantage / disadvantage of revealed pieces ?

Sorry if these questions seem really obvious to experienced COIN players - I'm relying on you to make me more proficient!

Thanks,

Olivier


A quick answer (sorry, no time right now):

To have control over an area, a faction needs to have more pieces than all the other factions combined. Leaving a few of your pieces in a region may help prevent an enemy faction from getting control.

There are many other reasons (in connection with events, special abilities, dealing with marching enemy factions and so forth), i'm sure you will get several more answers in no time...
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Henrik Johansson
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Revealed pieces can not take part in raiding.
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Ronald Tin
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As others have said, keeping units may prevent control. Furthermore, Arveni and Aedui have special actions that can convert or add units. You can also, theoretically, leave units in certain places in anticipation of future events.

There can be many other possible reasons and I believe you can find your own answers once getting to play it.

In your second question, I assume you mean when you will be forced to reveal your units. Some events may force a player to do so.

Also, note that neither player need to reveal hidden units when there is a retreat.

I don't think there is an advantage to be revealed (except, perhaps, to demonstrate that you cannot ambush or raid the Roman...)
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Jim Marshall
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Having pieces in an area helps in a number of ways.

• Hidden warbands / auxiliaries allow you to use a number of your special abilities
• Mobile pieces can protect you vulnerable and valuable allied tribe markers (simply by soaking up hits that the allied tribes would otherwise take)
• Allied tribes count towards your victory conditions, and are useful when recruiting in an area

The map isn't large, so there will usually be a number of contested areas containing one or more pieces from opposing factions. Given that instigating battle isn't a free action - rather you have to choose it as your command when you have a turn - it's possible for opposing factions to co-exist in an area for a number of turns while the factions focus on higher priorities. Indeed, it may be beneficial to mix factions, especially for the Romans and Aedui

The Belgic faction is unlikely to tolerate opposing factions usurping control as control forms part of their victory conditions, but it's less important for the other factions (albeit still significant for certain commands, e.g. rally)
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Bob S.
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As noted above, one purpose of having a few units in an area otherwise controlled (or not) is to Harrass troop movements of other factions. This requires having at least 3 "hidden" warbands/auxilia in the province that an opponent moves into *and out of* during that march. I'm slowly catching on to trying to distribute forces among provinces that are important avenues for opponent faction movement.
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Volko Ruhnke
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To add to the several considerations mentioned, a smaller force in a Region sometimes can attack a more numerous enemy to beneficial effect, or attack a weaker third faction there. Warbands can Raid enemies to steal Resources even if outnumbered. Romans can Seize (forage) with just 1 piece in a Region. Roman Forts in enemy areas make it far safer for a Roman army to March in later. Ally and Citadel pieces, even if outnumbered, add to victory margins. Etc.

Hope you will enjoy the game!

Best, Volko
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Oerjan Ariander
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avronel wrote:
I am an experienced wargamer but totally new to COIN. In my first game of FS, I tended to gather big armies in single areas, whereas I noticed in examples of plays of different COIN games that areas are usually contested by different factions. What is the point in this game to leave pieces in minority?
(emphasis added)

Lots of good replies above

Something to keep in mind here is that Falling Sky is different from the previous COIN games in many respects, including the ways it rewards concentration of force - which it does to a much greater degree than any of those previous games. Because of this, if any of the examples of play you've seen are from other COIN games than FS, they inevitably feature tactics and strategies that aren't very relevant in Falling Sky! Some examples of such differences are:

- In Falling Sky, you can place Allied Tribes if you either have Control (Rally, Build, Entreat), or at least one Hidden Warband (Suborn). (Entreat requires both of these.) This rewards either a strong concentration of forces to gain Control, or a minimal but hidden presence. In the previous COIN games OTOH, placing "Ally" equivalents (Bases, Forts or Villages depending on which game and which Faction we're talking about) usually requires you to remove 2-3 of your own mobile units, and it is a Very Good Idea (tm) to have some extra units in the space too to protect the Base after you've placed it; but you don't need Control to do it, so in those games you'll often see a Faction gathering 3-5 mobile units in a space as a preparation to build a Base even though other Factions also have forces in the same space.

- March Commands in Falling Sky are paid for per origin space, so if you want to move cheaply it is best to have a single big force; you can easily disperse it if you need to, but if you do it'll cost you to bring it back together again. In the previous COIN games, Marches are paid for per destination space, making it cheap to concentrate forces from several different spaces (e.g., local garrisons) into a single one for a big attack or similar, but expensive to send them back to garrison duty.

- In Falling Sky, revealed units become Hidden by Marching. In the previous COIN games Hidden (aka "Underground") units are often revealed when they March, usually when they try to enter into spaces with enemy garrisons or when the moving groups are too large to hide. This means that those Factions that want to keep their units Hidden often aren't able to move large groups of pieces around, while those Factions that want to reveal their enemies often have to deploy a garrison of ~3 units in each space they want to protect.

- Combat. In Falling Sky, every Faction will fight inflict more damage in Battle the bigger their army is. In the previous COIN games there are usually one or more Factions ("the rebels") that rely on guerrilla-style pin-prick attacks instead so they're more effective if they can strike with single Underground units than if they try to use a large force; but their opponents ("the government") do have combat abilities that improve with force size - so if the rebels concentrate large forces, they usually just provide the government with easily-slaughtered targets without improving their own combat ability any.

Regards,
Oerjan
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olivier hertout
United Kingdom
Bedford
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Wow! I am really pleased both with the quantity and quality of the replies to my questions, thank you so much to each one of you! All your suggestions are really helping me to grasp the game better. FS is a really interesting game, but COIN definitely works differently from my usual hex and counter wargames! (which is what I was looking for).

Happy gaming everyone
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Volko Ruhnke
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Yes, great answers, thanks all. Happy gaming Olivier, glad that you are finding the design interesting!
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Ricardo Dubcek
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Hi Volko (and everyone),
Could you elaborate on that about a small army attacking a bigger one? Off the top of my head what first comes to mind would be Arverni using cannon fodder if that could land a kill on some legions, hoping that they can rally later to make up for their losses. But perhaps you have more ideas...
 
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Glenn Russell
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Ambushing a revealed army is one example of a way that a small army might want to attack a larger one.
 
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