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Author Topic: Marksdwarf Pillboxes  (Read 17325 times)

celem

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Re: Marksdwarf Pillboxes
« Reply #15 on: June 10, 2011, 03:40:40 pm »

360 LOS is a great thing.  At least when spotting the ambushes in the first place.  True when it comes to actually engaging you dont always want them going off at everything in range.  This is where the bridges in the second version are working for me.  I leave the pillboxes sealed till hostiles are standing in the crossfire and drop all the bridges together.  Due to bolts that miss being able to hit other hostiles and fire incoming from 360 degrees you can KO entire squads in a few game ticks :)
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Arkenstone

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Re: Marksdwarf Pillboxes
« Reply #16 on: June 10, 2011, 10:08:27 pm »

If you need 360 LoS, you can always go to the fortrified rooftop; a more restricted main viewport helps for setting up good firing lanes though. All told, you seem to have a fair concept of fields of fire, but for those who don't know:

What you need to do is find a relatively small area(s) through which the enemy must travel to get to your fort, this will be your first chokepoint (or series of chokepoints, if you have multiple entrances). Put a couple of pillboxes with lines of sight restricted so that they can only see inside this chokepoint or closer towards your fort. Then find another, such that the goblins must pass the first chokepoint to reach the next. Set up as long a series of chokepoints as you can, all the way up to your gate.  The gate itself you should turn into a killing ground, like a chokepoint but with no exit; let the goblins get in the first gate then get shot at from all sides when they're trapped (this is why castles had courtyards).

When the gobbos come, make two or more fire groups of marksdwarves, then set them up in stages at the chokepoints.  When a group runs out of ammo, have them fall back to a central stockpile.  When they've regrouped and rearmed, send them to the next empty chokepoint the gobbos haven't gotten to yet.  When they get to the killing field, regroup all squads there but open up only once the outer gate is closed...  If any gobbos remain outside then you can just let them in once the first group is dead; but if the AI is ever upgraded it might be better to then and only then fire apon them from convex ramparts and wide-view firing positions.


Another thought is to have hidden (well, blocked by raised bridge more likely) sally ports out in the open from which squads of axedwarves could jump out and dispatch pesky archers; as with all melee combat this is risky, but it might become necessary if when Toady gives the gobbos some Fun new ways to go-a-gatecrashing (literally, in this case).
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krenshala

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Re: Marksdwarf Pillboxes
« Reply #17 on: June 10, 2011, 10:39:33 pm »

I don't think you can have multiple stockpiles all pulling from one. You can have one pulling from many, or a chain where #5 pulls from #4, which pulls from #3, etc. But a chain means a lot of hauling from one pile to the next to get an item from the head to the tail. I think it's actually implemented as a push, rather than a pull. An item is in a stockpile and the code says "can this be sent somewhere else?" and if there were more than one places to send, it would get confused. I supposed it could be done if there is an ordered list and it just sends to the first non-full pile on the list, but it doesn't seem to be done that way. It's a shame, because having multiple distributed piles pulling from a central pile would be very useful in many situations (booze and food come to mind).
Actually, I do my woodpiles this way.  I have one large stockpile that gets the lumber fresh from the woodcutters (assuming available haulers, of course), and then a small wood pile at each location that needs it (the wood furnace, the carpenters shop, the bowyer shop) that Takes from the large stockpile.  From watching my haulers, it seems to (roughly) cycle between the pulling stockpiles so they fill up relatively evenly.  If it is actually using a push from the source to the destination then it is even easier on the processor since the main stockpile just says "does it need logs?  ok, send a stack!  how about this one?  ok, send one there too!" and repeats until there isn't room.  My 2x3 stockpiles taking from my 6x24 wood stockpile were at most half empty while I had about 3-8 idlers available (out of about 30 dwarves, admittedly).
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Arkenstone

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Re: Marksdwarf Pillboxes
« Reply #18 on: June 10, 2011, 11:34:11 pm »

"does it need logs?  ok, send a stack!"
Lol, Minecraft players can be easy to spot it seems...  ;D

EDIT:  Back to the thread topic though, I would think that a central ammo stockpile would be better because you should be pulling back your dwarves when they run out of ammo anyways.  Centralizing the ammo supply forces an... uninspired commander to keep his squads mobile; and when it comes to an extended firefight, mobility is life.
« Last Edit: June 10, 2011, 11:37:30 pm by Arkenstone »
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Dwarven economics are still in the experimental stages. The humans have told them that they need to throw a lot of money around to get things going, but every time the dwarves try all they just end up with a bunch of coins lying all over the place.

The EPIC Dwarven Drinking Song of Many Names

Feel free to ask me any questions you have about logic/computing; I'm majoring in the topic.

celem

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Re: Marksdwarf Pillboxes
« Reply #19 on: June 11, 2011, 04:24:14 am »

Good point that I glossed over somewhat in the OP's there from Arkenstone.  Funneling the hostiles in some way so that they parade past whatever defenses you've constructed applies in most situations.  In the case of marksdwarves this should be obvious, you need them inside range and constructed walls are probably the simplest solution.

In addition the encouragement to think about real-world military situations was also good, I was originally just letting my snipers fire at will, this mainly causes enemy units to break and flee long before coming to any kind of range.  By restraining them till goblins have passed them (since they have to pass again if they want an exit) you generally kill a lot more and have far fewer escape.

Fields of fire.  The choosable fields of fire are cool and I seperated the bridges so they can be opened/closed individually to try and incorporate this.  Harder is getting the dwarves in the right place inside the box to actually be able to fire.  The main reason for the 360 is that every dwarf always has some kind of arc though not necessarily targets in that arc.  Once your dwarves have some skill this isnt an issue :)  Thinking about it further, if your funneling walls ensure that hostiles always arrive from the same side then you can alter the layout of the interior to force dwarves to take up firing arcs along the relevant wall.  The more 360 boxes are probably best saved for junctions in your flow of walls.

Sally ports, I incorporated these fairly early on since beyond my pillboxes is my trap corridor (snaking 75x1 with menacing bronze spikes).  It is truly astounding how much sally ports help when you have this kind of architecture as cleaning junk from these corridors is agonizing, I arranged it so that a 10-tile section of wall is actually a bridge that backs onto refuse piles and stairs down.  The other great fun part of these gates is that once you have sprung your trap...marksdwarves pincushioned everything in range, trap corridor full of KO'd, puking goblins...you then just deactivate your repeating spikes and send the melee out to sweep up.  In the initial stages of the game I sallied a lot with my military and they kept triggering ambushes, now my melee are sallying into a marksdwarf crossfire and anything stealthed dropped out ages ago.

I would think that a central ammo stockpile would be better because you should be pulling back your dwarves when they run out of ammo anyways.  Centralizing the ammo supply forces an... uninspired commander to keep his squads mobile; and when it comes to an extended firefight, mobility is life.

Very much so, especially so for marksdwarves in my case since I tend to give them leather and no metal, fast but need to be.  I do use a central stockpile but with 'take from' stockpiles to move bolts closer to the marksdwarves.  It was to get the buggers to disengage when out of ammo that I originally started playing with these bridge 'shutters'

EDIT:
Someone mentioned a page or two ago that ideally the whole thing should be on z+1 so that non-elite hostiles cant fire in if they walk right past.  Im playing about a bit with a few designs but its making the bridge 'shutters' much harder to install.  The one time some bowman did fire in like this I closed that shutter and he was thrown clear over the pillbox and into the river :)
« Last Edit: June 11, 2011, 05:10:43 am by celem »
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TomiTapio

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Re: Marksdwarf Pillboxes
« Reply #20 on: June 11, 2011, 09:52:54 am »

Seems like a good design. Thanks.
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Maklak

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Re: Marksdwarf Pillboxes
« Reply #21 on: June 11, 2011, 03:08:28 pm »

I Like Your design, and may incorporate it into some future fort.

On choke-points, and snaking entrance with spikes: I'd probably try to incorporate some siege engines into that for added glory and fun.

Not in scale:
. - goblin path with spikes
T - marksdwarf tower
F - fortification
W - wall
<- siege engine
Code: [Select]
............F     <-
    T      .W
............F     <-
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Triaxx2

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Re: Marksdwarf Pillboxes
« Reply #22 on: June 11, 2011, 03:37:20 pm »

A good option is at some point to link a Pressure plate to the bridges. Let the hall narrow to a single tile wide, so that they have to cross that tile. This will open the bridges, one retracting to keep them from getting further, and a couple of raising to allow the archers to shoot. Or just two sets of raising, so that the archers then have a clean shot down at the gobbos they couldn't see before. Since the bridge allowing advancement is now closed, the gobbos won't cross the tile again, and are now stuck where the archers can shoot. Two more raising bridges, one just before the tile and one under the archers, will turn this into a kill box which can't be escaped.
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krenshala

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Re: Marksdwarf Pillboxes
« Reply #23 on: June 11, 2011, 07:01:05 pm »

"does it need logs?  ok, send a stack!"
Lol, Minecraft players can be easy to spot it seems...  ;D
Yeah ... but I started DF before I started MC. ;D

EDIT:  Back to the thread topic though, I would think that a central ammo stockpile would be better because you should be pulling back your dwarves when they run out of ammo anyways.  Centralizing the ammo supply forces an... uninspired commander to keep his squads mobile; and when it comes to an extended firefight, mobility is life.
It doesn't have to be a completely centralized stockpile.  Just make sure your local ammo piles are placed in such a way the marksdwarves have to fall back to use them. ;)  Also, if all of the smaller bolt piles pull from the main stockpile, then (I believe, based on what I've seen in the game) any retrieved bolts should be hauled to the main stockpile and not the nearest smaller one.
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Zepave Dawnhogs the Butterfly of Vales the Marsh Titan ... was taken out by a single novice axedwarf and his pet war kitten. Long Live Domas Etasastesh Adilloram, slayer of the snow butterfly!
Doesn't quite have the ring of heroics to it...
Mother: "...and after the evil snow butterfly was defeated, Domas and his kitten lived happily ever after!"
Kids: "Yaaaay!"

Fredd

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Re: Marksdwarf Pillboxes
« Reply #24 on: June 12, 2011, 12:00:15 am »

Always build a reserved deathtrap for enemy archer squads. Protected archers have the benefit of a ranged attack against infantry. Consider them as artillery. Protected marksdwarves vs enemy archers have a small benefit from firing from fortifications. But a elite enemy sniper will take its toll. Thus a special deathtrap to destroy enemy archers that you can activate. This is similar to counter battery fire.
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Urist Da Vinci

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Re: Marksdwarf Pillboxes
« Reply #25 on: June 12, 2011, 12:29:06 am »

DF keeps track of facing, so flanking gives combat bonuses. You can notice this in the combat reports when you see an attack was "from behind" or "from the side". Attacks from these flanking directions are generally more successful.

Enemies, such as goblins, are considered to be facing their current target, or the last attacker if they have nobody to attack. They only turn around on their "step".You can see this in adventure mode: if you have a much higher speed than an enemy, you can quickly step past them and stab them in the side.

In dwarf mode squad combat, you want to flank the enemy squad by using one of your squads as bait, so the second squad gets a bonus. You can have melee dwarves pin a goblin squad from in front, while marksdwarves snipe from the rear.

Nikov

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Re: Marksdwarf Pillboxes
« Reply #26 on: June 12, 2011, 08:03:37 am »

If you look at old neoclassical fortresses you see the geometric principles of the defense taken to a science. Every angle the enemy might attack from is covered by fire and there are no little nooks or hiding places within musket range of the walls. All those perfectly graded and manicured earth embankments exist to be the most efficient killing fields possible, preventing the enemy from taking any cover whatsoever. Each bastion or bulwark supports another two in front of it and can be supported by another two behind. No individual soldier or gun has a 360 field of fire, rather, every weapon's limited exposure is coupled with a dozen others to create perfect control of all approaches.
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vorpal+5

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Re: Marksdwarf Pillboxes
« Reply #27 on: June 13, 2011, 12:08:42 pm »

Version 0.2

So I wanted to improve this design and try to remove as many weaknesses as possible.
(..)
Picture
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

Very neat! A loosely related question, what is the graphic mod you use?
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celem

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Re: Marksdwarf Pillboxes
« Reply #28 on: June 13, 2011, 12:51:02 pm »

That one is.....it's Ironhand 0.57
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Qirex

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Re: Marksdwarf Pillboxes
« Reply #29 on: September 25, 2011, 01:00:12 pm »

Great design, but I've done some personal modifications to the design (I use 0.1, I've so far had no need for bridges due to my design)
Code: [Select]
z-0
WWWWWWW
WLLLLLW
WLLLLLW
WLLLLXW
WWWWWWW

z-1 and above [archer level(s)]
WWWWWWW
WBLLLLW
WLFFFLW
WLLLLXW
WWWWWWW

Roof level
LLLLLLL
LLLLLLL
LLLLLLL
LLLLLLL
LLLLLLL
W= constructed wall
L= Floor, natural or constructd
F= fortification
X= up/down stair
B=Bed

First of all, I use a bed instead of an armor stand to designate the barracks. This way, the amount of tantrums as a result of "has slept without a proper room lately" is greatly reduced, and during a protracted siege means that they can safely stay inside the tower for longer.

Secondly, I start the archer levels from z+1 and above. This prevents enemy archers fom killing my marksdwarves due to the requirement that they use fortifications they are adjacent to. Another thing I've done it to build 3 or more archer levels in each tower, and massacare the concurrent sieges (I use the FD mod, available in the link [I suck at formatting ] http://www.bay12forums.com/smf/index.php?topic=62874.0 ) by sheer volume of fire.

Thirdly, I use a "courtyard" system modeled after my strategies in TD games like bloons tower defense, whereas invaders have to go through snaking corridors while under heavy fire. There is a large open space where I station melee dwarves to kill those that break through, and a trap corridor (not installed in picture, would also be in preceding hallways) as a last line of defence. Because invaders are being shot at from all sides in the open space, I've had sieges of 6+ squads fail to even make contact with my melee dwarves.

Here's a picture of the general design I've used through ten fortresses.


One thing I do need help with is how to place repeating menacing spikes as to kill enemies, but allow my dwarves to pass through for trade. I've considered placing them in a configuration like this, and setting the spike tiles as restricted traffic, but I haven't had time to test it yet, and I have a feeling it would produce friendly fire deaths from dwarves dodging onto the spikes.
Code: [Select]
WSSSSSSSLW
WLLLLLLLLLLW
WLSSSSSSSW
(repeat as needed)

Criticism of my designs (and english) is welcome as this is my first actual post.

I'll edit with the picture of the courtyard in a bit.
« Last Edit: September 25, 2011, 01:15:22 pm by Qirex »
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