URL:
  <http://gna.org/bugs/?13946>

                 Summary: Wish:  Ability to escort units automatically
                 Project: Freeciv
            Submitted by: nmx
            Submitted on: Monday 07/13/2009 at 14:57
                Category: ai
                Severity: 1 - Wish
                Priority: 5 - Normal
                  Status: None
             Assigned to: None
        Originator Email: 
             Open/Closed: Open
         Discussion Lock: Any
                 Release: 
        Operating System: None

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Details:

Automating units is one of the best features of Freeciv; however, the only
way to escort units (e.g. workers near a belligerent enemy) is to move them
all manually, manually moving the defenders that are escorting them.  This
problem could have multiple solutions, the simplest of which is probably to
allow the user to assign a defender to escort a unit, which means the
defender fortifies when it's in the same space as the unit, and otherwise
goes as fast as it can to catch up with the unit.  While not ideal, it's a
huge improvement over having your stupid workers systematically killed off as
they diligently run to a space in need of improvement at the front line. 
Bonus points if an escorted unit would never move faster than its fastest
escort.  This would work very well for Transports, too!

A more complex option:  Escort Weak Units is an intransitive order to be
given to any military unit.  Any units on a space that is "at risk" (i.e.
within striking distance of a known enemy unit, or within probable striking
distance based on roads, borders, and fog of war), and not escorted will
automatically draw an escort toward them, who will fortify upon reaching the
space.  Idle escorts could either remain fortified where they were last
needed, or could retreat to the nearest city.  This option would not provide
protection for transports, so I certainly would prefer an easier option that
works for more units, and something fancy like this as a supplement to that.

One of the primary things that makes Freeciv so much more fun to play than
the Civilization games is all the intelligent automation of units.  Without
unit escort, war results in one of two things for me, depending on my mood: 
I lazily play ineffectively, by letting my workers get exterminated and
rebuilt over and over; or I tediously micromanage the support units and
transports to keep them defended by an escort.  I rarely take the latter
option simply because it's no fun.

Other suggestions welcome, of course!  Thank you!




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