The latest version of The Second World War is now live. There's a lot of new AI improvements, fixes and some new content additions. To begin with, we’ve about finished our comprehensive rewrite of the Land Offensive/Defensive AI. For the most part, the changes may not be very noticable. But over the course of a full game, players should experience an AI making wiser large and small scale decisions that will alter outcomes of battles and ultimately wars.
A major effort has gone into making the AI significantly more aware of it’s defensive needs both at home and abroad. They will also now attempt to gather reserves so front line collapses should not always lead to a total collapse. To get the AI to this level of functionality, new logic was required for how they move, split, reinforce unit groups and when to join a battle or consider it a lost cause.
We have a few more elements to complete in the Land Offensive/Defensive AI, including Improving Empire Defense, even better Allied support evaluations and ensuring the US is properly focused on defeating the Axis. The later issue encompasses bolder amphibious attacks and island to island campaigns.
The last update we introduced the new unit hitpoints. This had a fundamental impact on all systems related to the military. Some combat properties became overly powerful like Air to Sea attacks. These have been rebalanced along with other game areas like production times for all ships and the shipping capacity resource. We felt that although in reality a carrier can take a long time to build, reality does not always translate into entertaining. We’ll remain open minded about how best to balance the game and try to settle on a consensus position where possible.
Further adjustments to the overall game have been made to bring the systems in line with the new unit hitpoint mechanics. This is an area we intend to expand on, especially in the UI as we discover better ways to present new combat information. In general, if there something in the UI you feel needs attention, please let us know. Community feedback on this would be appreciated.
There are many new historical and some alternative history events in this update. We are close to finishing the required minimum events spec’d for release on the first scenario, but I keep adding to the wishlist and expect to go well beyond the minimum. The new Ottoman and Turkestan Revival for Turkey fall into that category. They are both in game now and we plan to later incorporate them into the Steam Achievement system. Other events are to be added for most nations that will function in a similar fashion.
As some may have noticed, we’ve shifted from an every week scheduled update to one every 2 weeks. This is primarily due to the type of changes we’ve been working on. AI improvements can take quite a bit of time and results often require additional refinement passes. A week does not give us enough time to properly implement, test and rebalance. Even with a second week, the changes in this update are so comprehensive that some issues are still lingering.
The next update is planned for after the December Holidays and New Year. We’ll be looking to refine and polish Air & Naval AI and begin checking off items from our large but manageable list of smaller tasks that will take us to release. And there’s still Tutorial, Encyclopedia, Achievements and a new scenario to finish. I’ll be starting a 1939 pre-Poland Invasion scenario over the holidays. If things go as planned, it might make the next update.
- Major rewrite of Land Defense AI
- Reworked defense requirement calculations
- Improved AI ability to identify regions that need defending
- Revised AI group splitting for better unit to region allocations
- AI defends against units belonging to non-enemy but unfriendly nations
- Moved defensive AI balance numbers to the xml for modding
- Revised defense AI to distribute groups to defense regions while at war
- Incentivize AI to hold reserve troops adjacent to defense regions and engagements
- Reworked Offensive AI land targeting evaluations
- Changed definition of Obvious target to be undefended Artillery/Air units or undefended City
- Don't consider defense when Obvious target is in range
- Fixed overseas AI from constantly picking the same overseas target
- Reworked engagement AI to avoid “piling on” or sending troops to a "lost cause"
- Fixed bug in AI evaluation of enemy coastal defenses in opportunity attack
- Revised offensive AI to consider defense needs when moving troops
- Reworked Support Allies AI to consider allied defense during peacetime
- Improved power calculation in Support Allies AI
- Fix for rare bug in offensive AI searching for region that a group is already in
- AI turn processing now processes independent nations first
- Reordered AI processing to prioritize military plans and ensure specific order
- Turned on Subordinate Nation recruitment AI
Game System Changes:
- Changed rule on Military Access agreements to be Empire wide
- Fixed bug so AI no longer considers landlocked Gulf of Ob a Coastal Region
- Units stuck behind in peace deals can now get supplies to exit
- Tanks no longer limited to moving 1 region a turn
- Movement table now shows MAX movement for transportation level 0
- Updated Movement Table
- Added strict pathfinding rules to Convoy targets and Artillery units
- Fixed calculations on Ranged attack hits to use Power instead of rolling to hit
- Added more Soviet forces on the Siberian front
- Fixed Decal on British Light Tank II
- Fixed Animation Glitch in Railway Gun shoot
- Swapped Democratic and Fascist flag
- Swapped Nuclear Labs and Jet Labs levels
- Lowered Power of Coastal Defense
- Reduced time for producing Shipping and Airlift Capacity
- Reduced Production Time for all Ships
- Increased Defensive Power of Militia
- Modified Multiple Unit Properties For Combat Balancing
- Significantly Reduced Air to Sea Attack Power
- New City Added in Caroline Islands call Moen for Truk naval base
- Changed China and Japan nation colors
- Added German Unit Icon Images
- Updated HP tooltips: Replaced Health with Strength & Casualties with Reinforcements
- Relabeled UI Auto Trade Title from Trade Amount to Stockpile Target
- Fixed land engagement UI popup showing the same unit multiple times
- Implemented Annex Nation and All Subordinates function for Event scripts
- Implemented Neutrality Pact function for Event scripts
- Increased AI desire to go after regions referenced as target regions in Events
- An Event failure no longer stops execution of all subsequent Events.
- New Events for American takeover of Greenland and Iceland
- New German Atlantic Wall Events
- New Neutrality Pact Events (Keeps USSR & Japan from fighting & Phoney War)
- New Soviet Factory Relocation Events
- New Thailand Events (Franco-Thai War, Alliance with Japan)
- New Turkish Events (Axis or Allies, Hatay, Ottoman or Turkestan Revival)
- New Vichy French Colonial Revolts Events
- New Japan Events (Vietnam, Thailand Invasion)
- New USA Events: Pacific and North African Campaigns
- New Irish Events (Axis or Allies, Blueshirts)
- New Spain Events (Join Axis, Italy, Germany Attack Republican Spain)
- New Italy Event for Invasion of Malta