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Sally Stuart
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Ok all a little rant and rave from me.

I play Napoleonic's with my husband, we have all the expansions and generally have enjoyed all the games.

However, today after playing the 2nd Scenario in the Spanish expansion I feel I need to comment.

The Spanish are able to retreat upto 2 hexes and in this scenario they are actively encouraged to retreat off the map and are awarded flags for doing so. This makes it almost impossible for the French (me) to win. I played all the cards dealt to me in the best way possible pushing forward at every opportunity. I have always been lucky with my dice rolling and in the first few exchanges I was 4 - 1 ahead.

Then the Spanish rule kicked in. In quick succession with the aid of some retreat flags the Spanish units were exiting the map faster than I was able to pursue them. So despite being in ahead on killed units and ahead on awarded flags (4 to 1) the game was rapidly lost.

In short - bad rule and bad scenario conditions. Suggestion to other players IGNORE the retreat option in this scenario.
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Kent Reuber
United States
San Mateo
California
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A number of Commands & Colors scenarios are unbalanced. For example, http://www.commandsandcolors.net/napoleonics/maps/peninsular... shows that the Spanish win a whopping 82% of the time. The best way to handle these unbalanced scenarios is to play them twice, switching sides, with the player who accumulates the highest total number of banners winning.
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Mark McG
Australia
Penshurst
NSW
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Without disagreeing with your assessment of the scenario, the Spanish can't actually use retreat movement to exit the map. They must be ordered and move off the map. If they reach the map edge and still must retreat, they lose blocks like every other unit.

That being said, short of the French getting a hand full of Bayonet Charges and Forced Marches, it is very difficult for the French Line moving 1 to catch Spanish Line retreating 2 hexes whenever they get a chance.

http://www.commandsandcolors.net/napoleonics/maps/peninsular...

Been several attempts to balance this scenario, by either substituting French Light for Line, or increasing the initial Exit requirement.
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Stuart Holttum
United Kingdom
Southend on Sea
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You know what the most balanced scenario would be? Identical number and composition of units, with identical abilities, on identical terrain. Ideally with the same cards drawn by both players.

Yawn.

Some scenarios are unbalanced.....perhaps because, the battles they represent were unbalanced. That's where the skill lies, to do better than your historical counterpart while under the same pressure - whether that be to do a better job as the underdog, or to achieve an even more crushing victory. I really cannot understand why - with dozens of scenarios to choose from - there are so many people so desperate for everything to be an even-Steven snorefest.
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Mark McG
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Stu Holttum wrote:
You know what the most balanced scenario would be? Identical number and composition of units, with identical abilities, on identical terrain. Ideally with the same cards drawn by both players.


this is called Chess, but you know what.. white moves first and apparently that is an advantage.


Stu Holttum wrote:

Some scenarios are unbalanced.....perhaps because, the battles they represent were unbalanced. That's where the skill lies, to do better than your historical counterpart while under the same pressure - whether that be to do a better job as the underdog, or to achieve an even more crushing victory. I really cannot understand why - with dozens of scenarios to choose from - there are so many people so desperate for everything to be an even-Steven snorefest.


I think the point is there should be roughly equal chance for each side to win, even if 'winning' constitutes conducting a successful withdrawal.

So the complaint is about the Victory Conditions, not so much about the OB. There are some miserable scenarios, of which the epitome in my eyes is Champaubert
http://www.commandsandcolors.net/napoleonics/maps/sixth-coal...

if you gave the Russians a 3 banner start, they would still struggle to win.

 
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Stuart Holttum
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Minedog3 wrote:
.


Stu Holttum wrote:

Some scenarios are unbalanced.....perhaps because, the battles they represent were unbalanced. That's where the skill lies, to do better than your historical counterpart while under the same pressure - whether that be to do a better job as the underdog, or to achieve an even more crushing victory.


I think the point is there should be roughly equal chance for each side to win.....



But WHY?
As Kent says, you can play the scenario twice, for overall balance, if that's what's required. But why insist that every scenario be neutered to a 50/50 chance of success?

War ISNT balanced. The best generals of that era did their damndest to ensure that when they engaged the enemy, they did so from a position of vast superiority - not by trying to make everything balanced. Hence, the historical scenarios will, often, be unbalanced. As I said, therein lies the challenge as the underdog - to make the most of what you have and do better than the real General did.

The Battle of Thermopylae.....ugh, how unbalanced. NOBODY would ever want to play that, would they? Let's just balance it by adding a few thousands more Spartans to make it fair....
 
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Mark McG
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why would you play an unbalanced scenario twice just to show that both players can win with the same side by the same amount?

The point is to adjust the victory conditions to reflect the strategic purpose of the battle. The Greeks were never going to win Thermoplyae, it was about creating a delay so the Persian invasion had less time and consumed more supplies. Plus supporting the fleet at Artemesia (and vice versa).

So what do you do?
Well one solution is a Special Rule adding extra Victory Banners.
Special Rules
• The Persian army receives 1 Victory Banner for each unit that exits the battlefield from a hex on the Greek base line.
http://www.commandsandcolors.net/ancients/maps/40-greco-pers...

and in fact the OP was complaining that the Special Scenario rule was defective, which it seems to be. But the point of the Special Rules is to reflect the special character of the battle, rather than each battle being a contest of the most efficient killing.

There is a whole variety of these Special Rules that adjust the Victory Conditions, and some of them can be be a bit Gamey, Zornoza for instance can be very easy for the Spanish if they get La grande manoeuvre.
 
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