Why was the 7-man rifle squad removed?

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kwok
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Why was the 7-man rifle squad removed?

Post by kwok »

The original reworks set out to change doctrines and factions to be more readily capable to balance towards 1v1 games in BK from a doctrine vs doctrine capability perspective. BIG NOTE/WARNING THE BETA IS NOT MEANT TO COMPLETELY BALANCE THE GAME!!!!

In that quest, we discovered a really major balance flaw in the countless 1v1 games that the beta has gone through. The 7-man rifle squad was without a doubt OP on really high levels of play. Its early availability, cheapness, and general combat effectiveness allowed really good players to win a really strong majority of their 1v1's playing as US no matter which doctrine against any doctrine post preliminary rework changes (in other words this might not be 100% true in current version games today for a lot of reasons i'll explain in a bit). I have really really old replays to show this.... but I don't think they could really be used anymore since those were old versions of the beta in which the files would be needed to run the replay. Here is the gist of the analysis though:

The 7-man riflemen's biggest advantage was its ability to be a pre-upgraded rifleman squad that could be built with very little additional cost from a regular rifleman and with no build time. Having no build time was a HUGE build order accelerator in low resource and high resource games. In a 1v1 scenario, the ability to field another unit instantly to gain a 1-unit lead on the enemy was extremely powerful and can be used extremely aggressively by high level players. Players will usually have the same amount of units on the field assuming they are efficient with their build order. In the early game, most units are only capable of pairing against one other unit. It isn't until the mid game where units start to be able to multi-face other unit match ups (for example, one puma can handle more than one rifleman, but in the early game no axis unit can handle more than 1 rifleman at a time). The fact that a US player can have two units in the same time that an axis player can make one was devastating because gave US players a huge advantage in handling any build order the axis player can throw out. Not even MG counters (which were designed to face hordes of inf) would work because it was as simple as send one rifle or even the captain to make the 7man squad to find the MG, then the 7man squad to flank.

A lot of good players know that sometimes games can be decided within the first 5 minutes of the game. A lot of maps are "if you lose the fuel in the center it's GG because the enemy will have tanks out first" (metaphorically). The ruthless combo for the 7man squad is that the build order is accelerated even faster for US because the riflemen squad has the fastest capture rate in the game. So not only can the extra rifle squad give combat advantage but resource advantage as well. This turned the first 5-min game end statement into "if you lose the fuel in the center it's GG because the enemy will have tanks out BEFORE AT CAN EVEN COME OUT".

The short term solution was to just remove the 7man squad. This was necessary for the 1v1 doctrine reworks to continue because other doctrine structure balancing was constnatly overshadowed by the 7man squad imbalance (just as the CW fuel advantage imbalance overshadows any CW doctrine imbalance). We considered bringing it back as a infantry doctrine specific ability that would be available late game. In fact we considered giving all officers some type of doctine specific ability (looking for that old post now... will edit this later with that link). So is the 7 man squad gone for good? I dunno probably not. It didn't really come up in discussion for a long time so it was sort of forgotten and never come back to among other major changes necessary for the beta to go live. But it seems like it might come back in discussion and I wanted to answer the inevitable question before we hear more screams of shadow nerfs (BY THE WAY IT WAS IN THE CHANGELOGS).

Hope to have continued constructive discussion on the future of bk!

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CGarr
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Re: Why was the 7-man rifle squad removed?

Post by CGarr »

Assuming you're posting this in response to me mentioning it on discord today, I think I worded my question poorly. I kinda understood why they were removed since I asked when it originally happened and you gave a similar answer. Personally I don't think they should have ever been removed, but I only say that because axis has plenty of units they can abuse so it wouldn't be a huge deal to keep them, although the ability should be made available later (after upgraded production in the motor pool, maybe).

My point in bringing it up earlier was more that I think the beta has transitioned to a state where it would make sense to bring them back, even with the nerf I just mentioned. However, I am somewhat torn on this only because I think there is a bigger issue that should be addressed regarding the availability of these stronger core infantry across all factions, as described in this post: (viewtopic.php?f=15&t=3630)

The issue is not necessarily one of balance. I bring it up with urgency more-so because it has had a massive negative impact on the game in terms of how enjoyable it is to play. This issue of inconsistent availability for core units applies to more than just elite inf, as tanks and TD availability are similarly inconsistent across factions. I understand that CW and PE are this way because the faction was made with a different design philosophy than the vanilla factions (US and WH), but this issue even impacts said vanilla factions, so I don't want to hear someone say "Oh, it's intentional and you don't understand the factions". WH has almost everything (although it isn't completely untouched by this issue, stormtroopers costing 2 CP when grenadiers, PE and CW special inf costs 0 is a good example). US on the other hand is a complete mess. You have what is arguably the worst TD in the game being locked behind a 2 CP wall where as 4 of 6 axis docs have marders for 0CP and the 2 that don't get them have panzer 4 F2's for 0 CP. Sure, US is capable of killing tanks without a 76 equipped tank, but the game grinds to a crawl if you try to do so for an extended period of time just because you wanted to unlock something interesting in your doc instead of a unit that other factions would get for free. Not to mention, the marder is just objectively better as a TD than the M10 since the targets it generally faces are much less armored and it has much greater firepower (3 second reload when stationary and HE for dealing with inf so it can stay in ambush for much longer). As I've said before, the issue is one with doctrine trees and unlock structure, not so much the stats of the units.

kwok
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Re: Why was the 7-man rifle squad removed?

Post by kwok »

Oh actually i don't know what you put on discord today. I posted in response to another player's comment today mid game. Also i think you mentioned something on a different post... or someone else did... it related to 7man squad but can't rememebr specifically what and where. eh i'm just providing history.

Diablo
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Re: Why was the 7-man rifle squad removed?

Post by Diablo »

kwok wrote:
30 Jun 2020, 03:47
We considered bringing it back as a infantry doctrine specific ability that would be available late game. In fact we considered giving all officers some type of doctine specific ability.
Just a quick idea:
We could return the tougher core infantry (for doctrines that lack it) as officer call-ins.
US: 7-man squad (or maybe basic Rangers?)
WH: Grenadiers
CW is more than fine with their 7-man MG team.
PE: Assault Grenadiers

To make sure this is not simply evading prior availability changes to strong core inf a unit limit of 1-2 could be added or the cooldown increased.

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CGarr
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Re: Why was the 7-man rifle squad removed?

Post by CGarr »

PE already has SS and I don't think the US or WH officers really need call in inf but that's just me.
kwok wrote:
30 Jun 2020, 05:14
Oh actually i don't know what you put on discord today. I posted in response to another player's comment today mid game. Also i think you mentioned something on a different post... or someone else did... it related to 7man squad but can't rememebr specifically what and where. eh i'm just providing history.
I meant on voip, should've clarified.

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Warhawks97
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Re: Why was the 7-man rifle squad removed?

Post by Warhawks97 »

There are plans so far to make officers in every doctrine to become something special.

At least that was the plan as far as i can remember.
But that only partially happened.


US Officers have not been reworked at all. For US inf doc for example i would wish it would be a 3 men squad to be more usefull as an offensive support unit. He would perhaps have nades, VT ability for howitzers, Heroic charge and stuff alike. Everything that makes it more combat usefull rather than being a sitting retreat point.

AB has an HQ squad. So not sure what role an officer can play there.


BK officers are very versatile right now. They had plenty of abilites in every doctrine. I cant even remember... it ranges from production overview to binoculars and artillery. Thats quite insane and should be more focused on their role in a doctrine.


The 7 men rifle squad would be a super good thing for inf doc officer. Perhaps inf doc officer could be like that. Its just a list of possible abilties:
3 men officer squad with thompsons
7 Men rifle squad call in
Heroic Charge ability (the one CW officers have and the BK stormtrooper leader squad)
Grenades and some of the ranger abilites.
Ambush ability when when ranger vet is unlocked.
VT for artillery





The Off-Topic part:
I would consider to make M10 really a 0 CP option and together with normal shermans to be a standard unit. I would be fine when in return the 76 shermans would be delayed by 1 CP.
But so far i was several times forced to rush for 76 shermans and M10´s to counter early Tank IV spams. So
As CGarr mentioned, axis have cheap Marders and Long Barreld Tank IV´s as regular units.

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Walderschmidt
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Re: Why was the 7-man rifle squad removed?

Post by Walderschmidt »

Warhawks97 wrote:
30 Jun 2020, 11:04
There are plans so far to make officers in every doctrine to become something special.

At least that was the plan as far as i can remember.
But that only partially happened.
Yeah, I think they were focusing on big structural changes first. I believe they still plan to do this.

Warhawks97 wrote:
30 Jun 2020, 11:04
US Officers have not been reworked at all. For US inf doc for example i would wish it would be a 3 men squad to be more usefull as an offensive support unit. He would perhaps have nades, VT ability for howitzers, Heroic charge and stuff alike. Everything that makes it more combat usefull rather than being a sitting retreat point.

AB has an HQ squad. So not sure what role an officer can play there.
I really like your ideas here.
Warhawks97 wrote:
30 Jun 2020, 11:04
BK officers are very versatile right now. They had plenty of abilites in every doctrine. I cant even remember... it ranges from production overview to binoculars and artillery. Thats quite insane and should be more focused on their role in a doctrine.
I honestly think it's fine as is, as you can build the Wehrmacht Lieutenant right away or you can get the Stormtrooper officer after 4 CP and buying the 250 mp 20 fuel HT first before you pay 400 manpower for the officer squad.

Personally, I'd rather give the Americans additional and more useful officers than take away from German officers.

Warhawks97 wrote:
30 Jun 2020, 11:04
The 7 men rifle squad would be a super good thing for inf doc officer. Perhaps inf doc officer could be like that. Its just a list of possible abilties:
3 men officer squad with thompsons
7 Men rifle squad call in
Heroic Charge ability (the one CW officers have and the BK stormtrooper leader squad)
Grenades and some of the ranger abilites.
Ambush ability when when ranger vet is unlocked.
VT for artillery
I really like this idea.
Warhawks97 wrote:
30 Jun 2020, 11:04
The Off-Topic part:
I would consider to make M10 really a 0 CP option and together with normal shermans to be a standard unit. I would be fine when in return the 76 shermans would be delayed by 1 CP.
But so far i was several times forced to rush for 76 shermans and M10´s to counter early Tank IV spams. So
As CGarr mentioned, axis have cheap Marders and Long Barreld Tank IV´s as regular units.
I agree with 100%. I think the M10 should be a 0 CP option for all American doctrines, not just Armor Doctrine. It's pretty equivalent to Marders in that they are both glass cannons.

Wald
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kwok
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Re: Why was the 7-man rifle squad removed?

Post by kwok »

Can we stop agreeing to a 0cp m10 on a thread about riflemen?

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CGarr
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Re: Why was the 7-man rifle squad removed?

Post by CGarr »

kwok wrote:
30 Jun 2020, 21:10
Can we stop agreeing to a 0cp m10 on a thread about riflemen?
Only for you bby

viewtopic.php?f=15&t=3702

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