Build only one type of unit

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Build only one type of unit

Postby mrdgeography » 18 Nov 2011, 03:53

I am playing a game as England. I have 9 units, 7 fleets and 2 armies. Usually, as England I end up with way more fleet than armies but then it got me thinking. Is it possible to win by building only one type of unit? Has this been done? I see the most likely candidates as England with just fleets or maybe Austria or Germany with just building armies.
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Re: Build only one type of unit

Postby Willie900 » 18 Nov 2011, 04:21

well, you can't play an entire game only having a single type, because you start with a mix. I've never seen anybody do it only building armies or fleets, but I'd imagine it'd be easier with armies than fleets, just because armies can get any SC, while fleets are limited to coastal SCs, and if you were England doing fleets, you'd need to get into the Med and conquer Italy and perhaps beyond, since you couldn't get Paris, Munich, Warsaw, or Moscow.
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Re: Build only one type of unit

Postby sock » 18 Nov 2011, 04:40

Certain countries are practically impossible to occupy without the help of a fleet or two. Besides England, which is obvious, it can be very difficult to either capture or hold Italy and Turkey without naval support. I think Russia, Germany, and Austria have the best chance to go all army. France would get quickly hemmed in without fleets.

France (3), Iberia (2), Lowlands (2), Germany (3), Austria (3), Balkans (4) leaves with 17. And you have plenty of potential land targets in easy reach...Venice, Warsaw, Moscow, Denmark, STP, and Sevastopol to name a few.

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Re: Build only one type of unit

Postby jayahr » 18 Nov 2011, 04:46

There are four SCs that can be reached only if you have fleets:
Lon-Lvp-Edi (unless of course you start as England) and Tun

There are 7 SCs that are landlocked:
Mos-War-Ser-Bud-Vie-Mun-Par

Therefore it is possible to win with only fleets or only armies, but appears slightly more difficult with fleets.

But that is only the count - what about the difficulty of taking an SC? Perhaps we should look at whether it's easy to amass enough power to take an SC from someone else.

There are several groups of SCs that cannot be taken by land alone if the SCs are held and mutually supported: Den (only 1 land border), Con-Smy-Ank (can block in Con and Arm), Spa-Por (only Gas-Mar to attack), Rom-Nap (blocked in Rom and Apu) or Rom-Nap-Ven (with Rom-Tus-Ven). For that matter, there are a many additional stalemate lines if we ignore fleet attackers (e.g. Pic-Par-Bur-Mar). So although there are more land-accessible SCs, there are also many more defence options.

But then again, there only two SCs that border more sea spaces than land spaces: Nwy and Den. So an all-army force would have a significant advantage against an all-fleet force.
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Re: Build only one type of unit

Postby Willie900 » 18 Nov 2011, 05:11

jayahr wrote:There are four SCs that can be reached only if you have fleets:
Lon-Lvp-Edi (unless of course you start as England) and Tun

There are 7 SCs that are landlocked:
Mos-War-Ser-Bud-Vie-Mun-Par

Therefore it is possible to win with only fleets or only armies, but appears slightly more difficult with fleets.

But that is only the count - what about the difficulty of taking an SC? Perhaps we should look at whether it's easy to amass enough power to take an SC from someone else.

There are several groups of SCs that cannot be taken by land alone if the SCs are held and mutually supported: Den (only 1 land border), Con-Smy-Ank (can block in Con and Arm), Spa-Por (only Gas-Mar to attack), Rom-Nap (blocked in Rom and Apu) or Rom-Nap-Ven (with Rom-Tus-Ven). For that matter, there are a many additional stalemate lines if we ignore fleet attackers (e.g. Pic-Par-Bur-Mar). So although there are more land-accessible SCs, there are also many more defence options.

But then again, there only two SCs that border more sea spaces than land spaces: Nwy and Den. So an all-army force would have a significant advantage against an all-fleet force.



Denmark has two land borders...
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Re: Build only one type of unit

Postby President Eden » 18 Nov 2011, 06:55

Fleets are only used for controlling seas and the occasional convoy. Armies are needed to control land spaces.

Sea spaces: 18
Land spaces: 56

Armies are better; fleets should only be used to take on different sea sectors. You generally only need 3 fleets to control a given sector. Sectors defined:

England: NAO, IRI, ENG, NTH, NWS
Scandinavia: NTH, NWS, BAR, SKA, BAL, GoB
Western Mediterranean: MAO, WMS, GoL, TYS
Central Mediterranean: TYS, ION, ADS
Eastern Mediterranean: BLA, AES, EMS

Given this, Russia should probably not worry too much about fleets, as it only conceivably needs fleets in the North: 2-3 to secure Scandinavia. It's rare to see more than 2 Mediterranean fleets and even then those are just for securing BLA (and maybe pushing out into AES in a winning move). Austria, too, only needs about 3 fleets, as it rarely needs to secure Central and Eastern Mediterranean sectors simultaneously (thus the 3 fleets can do double duty and control both of them at different times). Germany probably won't go beyond four or five either, given that it only needs Scandinavia (2) and England (3); MAO can be secured in a winning push, like Russia with AES.

Italy and Turkey probably need about six so that they can take care of all three Mediterranean sectors. France will want a similar amount, though it may opt for a more army-centric approach because it has so many options for expansion. England, unsurprisingly, needs the most, so that it can secure its home base, Scandinavia and Western Med. While it could get by with six, we generally see an even mix because England also has to convoy (thus tying up extra fleets). All countries like convoys, naturally, but only England needs them; for all others they're a luxury to be spared, for England they're vital to victory, so England is allowed an even split.

All others, though, should see no fewer than a 3:2 A:F ratio, and maybe more.
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Re: Build only one type of unit

Postby jayahr » 18 Nov 2011, 09:21

"Denmark has two land borders..."

Yah - brain fart. It still has more sea spaces bordering it than land spaces.

Another thought - two fleets could hold Turkey (fleet Armenia!!!), Scandinavia (Nwy-Swe-Den) and Iberia, but they can't hold Italy as they can't support each other. So adding England and Tun means only 12 SCs within stalemate lines for fleets.
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Re: Build only one type of unit

Postby Mcc17 » 18 Nov 2011, 12:50

President Eden wrote:Fleets are only used for controlling seas and the occasional convoy. Armies are needed to control land spaces.

Sea spaces: 18
Land spaces: 56


What about coastal spaces? They count for both, really.

Sea spaces: 18
Coastal Spaces: 42 (including africa, which shouldn't by all means be army space at all)
Landlocked spaces: 14 (including bohemia)
Doubly landlocked spaces (not next to coast): 1 (bohemia)

Therefore, you can see fleets are just as important as armies. The problem with fleets is that their area of action is on the outskirts, and not the whole way round the outskirts. Thus, you need armies to control the middle. This is exacerbated by gibraltar, and other bottlenecks between sea areas. The other big problem with fleets is that there's no sea supply centers, yet there are landlocked supply centers.

Also, 13 within stalemate lines for fleets VS armies. You didn't count StP. And with the leftover seven or so fleets, they should easily be able to hold more, such as italy (not efficiently, but they can).

So really, my opinion is that england has the best chance to do it, by building only armies. They use their first two fleets to support their armies.
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Re: Build only one type of unit

Postby mrdgeography » 18 Nov 2011, 13:38

I think it can be done but the quality of your opponents is going to play a big role in the win. I gained a solo victory with England awhile back and I went back to see how many fleets I had vs. armies. The answer is 12/5. The only sc I took that was landlocked was Paris. On the other hand I needed Ruhr and Burgundy to stop Germany.
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Re: Build only one type of unit

Postby President Eden » 18 Nov 2011, 19:35

What about coastal spaces? They count for both, really.

No, not really. The vast majority of coastal spaces project more force when controlled by armies. Take a look...

More force projected by armies: Finland, St. Petersburg, Livonia, Prussia, Berlin, Kiel, Holland, Picardy, Gascony, Piedmont, Tuscany, Apulia, Venice, Trieste, Albania, Bulgaria, Armenia, Ankara, Sevastopol, Rumania, Smyrna, Syria (22)
By fleets: England, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Portugal, Rome, Naples, North Africa, Tunisia, Constantinople (15)
Indecisive: Spain, Marseilles, Brest, Belgium, Greece (4)

Landlocked: 13
Sea spaces: 18

35 superior by land, 33 by sea, 4 indecisive. That combined with the existence of 7 army-only SCs (but no fleet-only SCs) clearly shows the superiority of armies. And if one product is superior to another, then you should produce it as much as possible. So you should seek to minimize fleet builds and maximize army builds, only building, again, enough fleets to control an area as noted earlier.
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