Ethy
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Who Agree's? Grant Sucks!

Fri Feb 08, 2008 6:05 pm

Ok first i would like to say i am not having a dig at general Grant in real life, he was more than compitent in the field. however i was just wondering if anyone else has found that in the game well... he sucks! his stats are awsome, i cant remember of the top of my head but i think it goes like

strategic - 7
Offence - 6
defence - 5
political - 3

yet he has lost me more men than any other general in any other part of my campaign! he was so bad i even releaved him of his duty as a army commander and sent his ass to get court marshalled and hanged as a rebel sympithiser in Washington! Frederick Steele is now my commander of the western command and he although has poor stats compared to Grant has been more than impressive on the field of battle!

i know wat your thinking... did he have his divisions set up properly? was he adequatly supplied? did he have compitent troops? was there anyone actually in his army or was he doing a rambo and fighting on his own? my answer to this is purely "i know how to play the game! i know how most things work" its just Grant sucks!

but i was just wondering is there anyone else who has found that Grant never really seems to win a battle?

wolflars
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Fri Feb 08, 2008 6:12 pm

Funny thing...I have had this problem with Grant as well. At first I figured I was pushing him too hard or asking him to do the impossible because he is Grant. Later I suspected there was some secret characteristics buried deep in the code (new leader skill = raging alcoholic, forces leader to lose battles).

All in all, I think it was because I was expecting too much from him and thus not outfitting his men properly. But, I am curious if others have had issue...

Ethy
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Fri Feb 08, 2008 6:16 pm

wolflars wrote:Funny thing...I have had this problem with Grant as well. At first I figured I was pushing him too hard or asking him to do the impossible because he is Grant. Later I suspected there was some secret characteristics buried deep in the code (new leader skill = raging alcoholic, forces leader to lose battles).

All in all, I think it was because I was expecting too much from him and thus not outfitting his men properly. But, I am curious if others have had issue...


thank you, i thought it was just me, but really i see no adequate reason why Grant could be pushed too hard by asking to take a few towns :)

cheers though im glad to see theres somone else out there who feels the way i do :D

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soloswolf
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Fri Feb 08, 2008 7:29 pm

Whatever you may think...

He's not allowed to suck. As much as we all put a bit of role-play into this game, and further filter it through our personal views on the ACW, it's all math.

I think your stats are a touch high (for his stock stats anyway), but he's one of the best commanders the game has to offer. If he's sucking, it's because you're making him suck.

Aaron

beefcake
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Fri Feb 08, 2008 7:45 pm

My experience with Grant has always been positive. I give him a corps sized command as soon as he appears, then get him to fight battles in TN or KY. Usually he makes 3* by early '62. Then I get him into an army command as soon as possible.

I don't use my 3* army commanders directly. I'm trying to keep them stacked with their corps commands, but all too often they are farther behind the lines and have no direct influence on the battles. But Grant's "Gifted commander" ability is too good to pass up. It really elevates his performance of 2* leaders under his command. In one campaign, it turned Irvin McDowell into George Thomas when the Rebs threatened Alexandria, VA.

The commander who has cost me more troops and battles than anybody else is Meade. The worst fight was a recreation of Fredericksburg. He seemed perfectly willing to feed his corps (and another corps stacked with him) into a meat grinder, and I lost 50,000 men in a two week period. My jaw was actually in my lap when I saw the final tally. I was grateful that I could absorb the losses, but my NM score took a big hit as a result.

Ian Coote
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Fri Feb 08, 2008 8:59 pm

although a great general he did seem to have a habit of loseing an awful lot of troops.From May 5th till June12th 1864 Grant's losses.Killed 11902 wounded 53180.Numbers taken from The Statistical Record by Frederick Phisterer.

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berto
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Fri Feb 08, 2008 10:51 pm

Ian Coote wrote:although a great general he did seem to have a habit of loseing an awful lot of troops.From May 5th till June12th 1864 Grant's losses.Killed 11902 wounded 53180.Numbers taken from The Statistical Record by Frederick Phisterer.

Keep in mind:

--The summer of 1864 was exceptional. Grant's losses were not so proportionately high earlier in the war.
--By 1864, ACW combat was taking on the character of WWI combat, where attacks of any kind were becoming suicidal, and especially so against entrenchments, which were by then defensive standard operating procedure.
--In the summer of 1864, with Grant new to the theater, new to the Army of the Potomac, and with Meade interposed between Grant and direct command of the AoP, Grant's influence over battles was somewhat indirect. That is, Meade and incompetent corps commanders deserve a large part of the blame for the heavy losses. (Just last night I read Foote's account of the Battle of the Petersburg Crater, where Burnside in particular bungled the attack, showing ineptness extraordinary even for him. Grant was furious and sent Burnside packing.)
--Remember Seven Days and Gettysburg. Lee's losses were high, too. (IIRC, Lee's casualty ratios, over the course of the entire war, not just 1864, were actually higher than Grant's.)
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LMUBill
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Fri Feb 08, 2008 10:54 pm

Ian Coote wrote:although a great general he did seem to have a habit of loseing an awful lot of troops.From May 5th till June12th 1864 Grant's losses.Killed 11902 wounded 53180.Numbers taken from The Statistical Record by Frederick Phisterer.


At that time he was fighting a war of attrition against Lee. Grant had large numbers of men he could lose and still be able to field an army. Lee didn't. Apart from that one attack at Cold Harbor they could be considered "acceptable losses."

tagwyn
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Grant's Losses

Sat Feb 09, 2008 1:45 am

In the summer of 1864 to the end of the war Grant lost more men killed and wounded than were in the ANV in the beginning in total !!! ergo, Grant the Butcher. :p apy:

Aurelin
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 3:10 am

tagwyn wrote:In the summer of 1864 to the end of the war Grant lost more men killed and wounded than were in the ANV in the beginning in total !!! ergo, Grant the Butcher. :p apy:


Lee lost more men during his tenure than Grant during his. So it's more like Lee the butcher.

121,000 of Lee's men were killed/wounded, compared to Grant's 94,000.

During Lee's first 14 months, he lost 80,000 while inflicting 73,000 casualties.

His average loss 1862-63 was 19% while his adversaries were losing 13%.

During the 1864 campaign, he imposed a 41% casualty rate while losing 46%

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Sat Feb 09, 2008 3:20 am

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willgamer
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 4:17 am

Gray_Lensman wrote:These statistics however, do not reflect the greater capabilities of Lee.

When he was losing his higher casualties he was generally on the offensive, which if compared to Union generals when on the offensive is quite low, percentage wise. Compare the statistics of Union generals when on the offensive and I think you will find a much higher percentage of Union casualties.


Your line of reasoning here vis a vis higher casualties on offense is correct, but actually strongly suggest that, if anyone was the butcher, it was Lee, not Grant.

According to Fuller, in his book Grant and Lee, from 1862-63 Grant's average killed and wounded was 10.03%, while Lee's was 16.20%. This reflected both offensive and defensive battles.

However when Grant directly opposed Lee (1864-65) his killed and wounded rose only slightly to 10.42%. This while Grant was continually on the offensive and Lee the defensive. (No comparably accurate numbers are available for Lee due to poor staff work).

Quoting Fuller: "Of 46 battles, great and small, tabulated by Livermore in Numbers and Losses, in which casualties for both sides are given, the Federal losses work out at 11.07%, and the Confederate at 12.25%; both of which figures are higher than Grant's total average of 10.225% , and decidedly below Lee's averate of 16.20%, for the years 1862-63, in spite of the fact that they include his losses. That Grant's casualties were abnormally high is thus proved a myth, and one of the most persistent in the history of this war.

:siffle:

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Groove74
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 5:18 am

Well Grant is a damn Yank Nuff said. LOL :fleb: :cwboy:
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Aurelin
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 6:33 am

Gray_Lensman wrote:These statistics however, do not reflect the greater capabilities of Lee.

When he was losing his higher casualties he was generally on the offensive, which if compared to Union generals when on the offensive is quite low, percentage wise. Compare the statistics of Union generals when on the offensive and I think you will find a much higher percentage of Union casualties.


Yes, he was generally on the offensive, but so was Grant. And Lee had no equivilent to Fort Henry/Donelson, Vicksburg, or even Appromattox.

He suffered 38% of all Confed battlefield casualties, while inflicting only 35%, while the rest of the Confed commanders combined did 62%/65%.

Was he really that capable? During the Seven Days, he lost 20% to Mac's 10%. The next time they met, with Lee defending, he lost 23% to 16%

In his first seven months, he lost 45,000 while inflicting 50,000. Not the kind of ration you want on the low end of a 4 to 1 manpower ratio.

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Sat Feb 09, 2008 7:52 am

Ethy wrote:Ok first i would like to say i am not having a dig at general Grant in real life, he was more than compitent in the field. however i was just wondering if anyone else has found that in the game well... he sucks! his stats are awsome, i cant remember of the top of my head but i think it goes like

strategic - 7
Offence - 6
defence - 5
political - 3

yet he has lost me more men than any other general in any other part of my campaign! he was so bad i even releaved him of his duty as a army commander and sent his ass to get court marshalled and hanged as a rebel sympithiser in Washington! Frederick Steele is now my commander of the western command and he although has poor stats compared to Grant has been more than impressive on the field of battle!

i know wat your thinking... did he have his divisions set up properly? was he adequatly supplied? did he have compitent troops? was there anyone actually in his army or was he doing a rambo and fighting on his own? my answer to this is purely "i know how to play the game! i know how most things work" its just Grant sucks!

but i was just wondering is there anyone else who has found that Grant never really seems to win a battle?


In real life Grant was quite the butcher, so it makes sense.

For instance it can be argued that Grant lost every major engagement with Lee up until Petersburg. In fact, at Cold Harbor Virginia in June of 1864 Grant ordered an assault on fortified Confederate positions that led to 12 to 13,000 casualties (iirc 6,000 men were killed at one point in less than 20 minutes) while only inflicting about 2,500 casualties on the Confederate forces.

What Grant didn't do was retreat after losing to Lee. Retreat was what every Federal commander losing in Virginia had done up until that point. Instead, he kept moving around Lee's left flank.

In short, he did what Lincoln had hoped a Federal commander could do since the beginning of the war, namely "face the arithmetic."

So that Grant loses you lots of soldiers doesn't surprise me. Especially if someone who knew their stuff had put a hidden trait for Grant into the code.

-Scott

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Sat Feb 09, 2008 8:00 am

Aurelin wrote:Yes, he was generally on the offensive, but so was Grant. And Lee had no equivilent to Fort Henry/Donelson, Vicksburg, or even Appromattox.

He suffered 38% of all Confed battlefield casualties, while inflicting only 35%, while the rest of the Confed commanders combined did 62%/65%.

Was he really that capable? During the Seven Days, he lost 20% to Mac's 10%. The next time they met, with Lee defending, he lost 23% to 16%

In his first seven months, he lost 45,000 while inflicting 50,000. Not the kind of ration you want on the low end of a 4 to 1 manpower ratio.


There is a great book called General Lee: Revisted (I don't recall the author) out there. You should check it out if you haven't already.

My own thoughts were yes, he was "that" capable. He was able, despite at times 10 to 1 odds, to keep Richmond out of the hands of Federal forces for 3 years.

An argument could be made that he wasn't much of an offensive commander considering his failings at Sharpsburg and Gettysburg, but that's a different argument entirely.

I tend to agree with Joseph Johnston when he said something to the effect of "the most practical shot ever fired for the Confederacy was the one that shot me down at Seven Days."

-Scott

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Korrigan
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 8:04 am

There is no such thing as an hidden trait.
Leaders stats and traits are 100% moddable and visible.

Best regards,

Korrigan
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Aurelin
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 8:59 am

Revolutionarythought wrote:There is a great book called General Lee: Revisted (I don't recall the author) out there. You should check it out if you haven't already.

My own thoughts were yes, he was "that" capable. He was able, despite at times 10 to 1 odds, to keep Richmond out of the hands of Federal forces for 3 years.

An argument could be made that he wasn't much of an offensive commander considering his failings at Sharpsburg and Gettysburg, but that's a different argument entirely.

I tend to agree with Joseph Johnston when he said something to the effect of "the most practical shot ever fired for the Confederacy was the one that shot me down at Seven Days."

-Scott


10-1 odds? I would submit that it was due more to the shortcomings of his opponents. The Young Napoleon with his delusions about being outnumbered. Both Burnside and Hooker, who both stole a march on Lee, but faltered at the wrong time.

Sure, he kept Richmond free, but burned his own army up in the process. Two armies worth of losses. And all the while, the South was crumbling in the west.

I submit that he was far better on the defensive, Sharpsburg nonwithstanding, than the offensive.

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Wolfpack
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 8:59 am

willgamer wrote:Your line of reasoning here vis a vis higher casualties on offense is correct, but actually strongly suggest that, if anyone was the butcher, it was Lee, not Grant.

According to Fuller, in his book Grant and Lee, from 1862-63 Grant's average killed and wounded was 10.03%, while Lee's was 16.20%. This reflected both offensive and defensive battles.

However when Grant directly opposed Lee (1864-65) his killed and wounded rose only slightly to 10.42%. This while Grant was continually on the offensive and Lee the defensive. (No comparably accurate numbers are available for Lee due to poor staff work).

Quoting Fuller: "Of 46 battles, great and small, tabulated by Livermore in Numbers and Losses, in which casualties for both sides are given, the Federal losses work out at 11.07%, and the Confederate at 12.25%; both of which figures are higher than Grant's total average of 10.225% , and decidedly below Lee's averate of 16.20%, for the years 1862-63, in spite of the fact that they include his losses. That Grant's casualties were abnormally high is thus proved a myth, and one of the most persistent in the history of this war.

:siffle:


I've seen a few posts in this thread noting percentages of casualties, and also mentions of offensive vs defensive strategies. However, I have yet to see anyone mention one of the most important factors: relative force strength! How many battles did Lee enter with superior numbers? Very few. All other factors being even, would you expect the army with inferior numbers to sustain casualties at an even percentage with that of the army with superior numbers?! An outmanned army should be happy with even casualty numbers, even though that would obviously mean they had a higher casualty rate.
One example, a battle generally considered a draw:

Wilderness 5/5/1864
Force Casualties %ofForce
Lee 61,000 11,400 18.6
Grant 102,000 18,400 18.0

As you can see, Lee had approximately 60% of the force of Grant, suffered only 62% of the casualties as Grant, yet still managed to have a higher percentage of his force on the casualty list. This is probably the most extreme example, but Lee was regularly outmanned, so it would not surprise me in the least if his casualty percentage was higher than almost any major general of the ACW. Factor in the great disparity between the two armies in quality and quantity of arms and supplies, and the fact that Lee was able to keep the fight going as long as he did is amazing. Although true percentages don't "lie," the whole truth lies in the details.

P.S. At Chancelorsville, facing a Hooker almost twice his size :nuts: (57,000vs105,000), Lee sustained fewer casualties (12,800vs16,800), but the casualty percentage was in Hookers' favor: 22.4 vs 16.0
Doing more with less was Lee's M.O., percentages be damned!
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 9:12 am

Wolfpack wrote:An outmanned army should be happy with even casualty numbers, even though that would obviously mean they had a higher casualty rate.


At Sharpsburg, the numbers were roughly even. Like the percentage or not, the smaller army lost 11,700, out of 52,000, while the larger lost about the same number out of 75,000. At the end of the day, the smaller army had no fresh troops, while the larger one had the fairly fresh 9th, and the uncommitted 5th (20,000 men), with more on the way.

To lose as many men as your opponent, when you have an army that is out numbered, is a Phyrric victory at best

Why would an outnumbered army be happy about that?

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soloswolf
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 2:41 pm

There was very little to be happy about over the four years of war.

This debate could go back and forth until we are all hoarse, but the important facts (imho) are this:

- Grant's way won. And I have to believe his approach was in response to the situation. No one claims he was a 'butcher' until he came East. He used all the resources at his disposal to end the war as quickly as possible. Sadly, one of those resources was Federal soldiers. In summary: He was the man for the job and he executed it well.

- As far as Lee... We all know the disadvantages the Confederates had. This much is clear: He made the most of what he had. What I believe to be most important about Lee however, is that his men loved him and his enemy respected him.

Taking all things under consideration, I think it's apples and oranges with these two.

Aaron

Ethy
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 5:56 pm

Revolutionarythought wrote:In real life Grant was quite the butcher, so it makes sense.

For instance it can be argued that Grant lost every major engagement with Lee up until Petersburg. In fact, at Cold Harbor Virginia in June of 1864 Grant ordered an assault on fortified Confederate positions that led to 12 to 13,000 casualties (iirc 6,000 men were killed at one point in less than 20 minutes) while only inflicting about 2,500 casualties on the Confederate forces.

What Grant didn't do was retreat after losing to Lee. Retreat was what every Federal commander losing in Virginia had done up until that point. Instead, he kept moving around Lee's left flank.

In short, he did what Lincoln had hoped a Federal commander could do since the beginning of the war, namely "face the arithmetic."

So that Grant loses you lots of soldiers doesn't surprise me. Especially if someone who knew their stuff had put a hidden trait for Grant into the code.

-Scott


ah i see, thank you for helping me understand.

if your theory of a code directed to grant in this way is correct it is a very ingeniuos way to catch people like myself out. just goes to show that the blue and the gray is a very well made game with tricks and suprises round every corner!

god i love this game!

Ethy
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 6:04 pm

well thank you all!

i can see i caused great debate as to the abilities of Grant and a lot of time and effort has been put into your responses. cheers!

Ethy

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jeff b
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 8:24 pm

Revolutionarythought wrote:In real life Grant was quite the butcher, so it makes sense.

For instance it can be argued that Grant lost every major engagement with Lee up until Petersburg. In fact, at Cold Harbor Virginia in June of 1864 Grant ordered an assault on fortified Confederate positions that led to 12 to 13,000 casualties (iirc 6,000 men were killed at one point in less than 20 minutes) while only inflicting about 2,500 casualties on the Confederate forces.

What Grant didn't do was retreat after losing to Lee. Retreat was what every Federal commander losing in Virginia had done up until that point. Instead, he kept moving around Lee's left flank.

In short, he did what Lincoln had hoped a Federal commander could do since the beginning of the war, namely "face the arithmetic."

So that Grant loses you lots of soldiers doesn't surprise me. Especially if someone who knew their stuff had put a hidden trait for Grant into the code.

-Scott

You should read "The Warrior Generals" by by Thomas B. Buell which has great critiques of both Grant and Lee's style of command. One of Grant's major failings in the Virginia Campaign of 1864 was his failure to properly conduct battlefield reconnaisance. So for instance at Spotslyvania he repeatedly ordered Warren to attack Laurel Hill while the Mule Shoe attack was going on, but the ground was a killing field. There was no way Warren was going to do anything other than use up his corp. Again at Cold Harbor, Grant did not examine the ground he was attacking.
Those that have made the point that Grant "faced the arithmetic" are absolutely correct. Grant was basically willing to accept any losses as long as he was using up Lee's army at the same rate. So he would just order the attacks. Or as Lee once said. "The enemy is there, we will fight him"
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berto
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 8:27 pm

jeff b wrote:Those that have made the point that Grant "faced the arithmetic" are absolutely correct. Grant was basically willing to accept any losses as long as he was using up Lee's army at the same rate. So he would just order the attacks. Or as Lee once said. "The enemy is there, we will fight him"

A chilling glimpse into the future of warfare, and the utter madness that was World War I.
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kcole4001
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 9:16 pm

I believe Grant's starting stats are 5-5-4, while Lee has at least a 6 defensive stat.
Combine this with heavily entrenched forces, and you will take quite a few casualties as the attcking Union player.
With this type of warfare, there's really no choice.

Comparing Grant's total casualties with those of MacLellan is rather apples & oranges.
One commander was very aggressive, while the other was the opposite.
That doesn't make him a butcher, that means he was trying to do his job, that of winning a very dirty war, whether he liked it or not.

The same can be said of Lee. He knew what it took to do the job, knew a lot of men would die, but did his job anyway.

It takes either a butcher, or a man of deep conviction & strong resolution to go ahead knowing the cost.

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berto
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 10:00 pm

Late in the evening after the second day of the Wilderness, Grant (in the privacy of his tent) broke down and wept and "lost it" for a short time. Both he and Lincoln (and Sherman?) knew full well the human cost of the war, and in their own way they too suffered terribly.

or a man of deep conviction & strong resolution


It's called "moral courage." They had it in spades. Lee, also.
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Ethy
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Sat Feb 09, 2008 11:56 pm

kcole4001 wrote:I believe Grant's starting stats are 5-5-4, while Lee has at least a 6 defensive stat.
Combine this with heavily entrenched forces, and you will take quite a few casualties as the attcking Union player.
With this type of warfare, there's really no choice.

Comparing Grant's total casualties with those of MacLellan is rather apples & oranges.
One commander was very aggressive, while the other was the opposite.
That doesn't make him a butcher, that means he was trying to do his job, that of winning a very dirty war, whether he liked it or not.

The same can be said of Lee. He knew what it took to do the job, knew a lot of men would die, but did his job anyway.

It takes either a butcher, or a man of deep conviction & strong resolution to go ahead knowing the cost.



your correct in stating grant's and lee's stats in the game

however i thought i might remind you that my complaint was about how grant is not that impressive fighting rather insignificant generals and can loose even when the oposing general with stats of 1-0-1 or something similar to that. in theory shouldnt the big man come out on top?

Aurelin
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Sun Feb 10, 2008 12:00 am

Ethy wrote:your correct in stating grant's and lee's stats in the game

however i thought i might remind you that my complaint was about how grant is not that impressive fighting rather insignificant generals and can loose even when the oposing general with stats of 1-0-1 or something similar to that. in theory shouldnt the big man come out on top?


In theory, yes. In actual practice, anyone can have an off day.

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kcole4001
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Sun Feb 10, 2008 12:14 am

In my games Grant's come out on top until he ran into a heavily entrenched, almost equal strength forces.

Each battle is unique, though, so it's hard to tell what's happening, & why he's causing you so many casualties.

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