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Each attack has several steps it goes through and ends up with a message that specifies the details of the attack and the results in terms of destruction and losses on both sides.
There are several stages in each attack:
Stage one: Inventory of the participating weapon systems.
When an attack is launched, the war engine starts by collecting data on both the attack force (most times an army unit), the ammunition that is available to the army unit and all the details on the defending forces.
The weapons of the attacking army unit are easily counted. The weapon systems that are selected to participate in the attack are specified by the attacker. There are no other parties involved in an attack. The available ammunition for the weapon systems is also taken into account. If any of the weapon systems is out of ammunition, it will not participate. If the army unit is out of supplies or gasoline, it will not be able to participate.
The defending garrison weapons, stationed at the attacked target, that are potentially effective against one or more weapons that are used in the attack. Such weapons will participate if the ammunition that is needed to operate them is available.
The defending forces may also include defensive air force wing of one of the federation members who are within range of the attacked target.
The federation forces must be within range of the attacked target. If the attacked target is a navy ship or a carrier, the federation forces must be within range of that navy. All ranges of all the weapon systems are specified in the weapons document.
The war engine counts the available weapon systems that are within range for each member of the federation. One of the federation members can contribute one air force unit but participation depends on the percentage of forces committed to the defense of federation members.
If the federation rules call for a 50% participation in the defense, the federation member will in fact participate in about 50% of the defense events. The best-equipped air force unit will be sent to support the defense. Some federations commit 100% of their defensive air force. Some commit much lower percentages.
Independent of the percentage of forces that was committed by each member of the federation, the participation is limited to one air force unit.
Once the numbers of all participating weapons are collected, the attack proceeds to the next stage.
Stage two: Executing the attack
Each attack round in Simcountry is executed as a series of mini attacks and defense actions, each using part of the available resources. Up to 16 mini rounds of fighting can be identified in each attack round but many times, some of them will not execute because weapon systems are already destroyed, or out of ammunition.
The defense starts the first mini round. It uses one sixteenth of the available defense weapons (counted and validated in stage one) to attack the offensive forces that are ready for the attack.
This mini counter attack can destroy some of the missile launching batteries. If many defensive missiles are available and the attacker has missile systems involved in the attack, some of the attack batteries may be destroyed before they even fired once.
If the defense has a very large number of these batteries and the size of the attack is small, potentially all of the attacking batteries could be destroyed in the first mini round.
This is unlikely and in most cases, only a small part of the attacking force will be destroyed in the first defense round.
Following the defense, a first mini attack will take place with about 1 in 16 attack weapons of each type, attacking their target. The force of the attack may be reduced by anti missile missiles that the defense can deploy to stop any incoming missiles. Also here, only one in 16 of the available missile interceptors will be used in each round.
The attack will in most cases cause destruction, although the size will depend on the numbers of weapons already destroyed in the first defense round and the number of intercepted missiles.
The first mini attack round will be followed by another defense round that will be executed in the same way the first defense round was conducted. Depending on the remaining numbers on both sides, there will be more losses to the attacker, followed by more attack rounds and defense rounds.
The attack will be completed after 16 rounds. In many cases, either the defense weapons or the attacking forces may have all been destroyed or have fired all the available ammunition.
If the defense falters, the attack will continue, uninterrupted by any defense rounds. If the attacker is exhausted, the complete attack will be terminated.
Stage three: Losses and casualties
Each mini attack round and defense round will result in losses in weapons and in dead and wounded civilians, soldiers and officers. The numbers are accumulated during the attack. When fighting stops, the numbers of lost weapons, both on the attacker side and the defender side, are updated into the country records of both countries and if federation members have lost weapons and ammunition, their country records are also updated.
Losses on the attacker side are also updated into the country record, including the number of missiles and other types of ammunition that were used in the attack.
Stage four: Reporting
The closing part of the attack is the detailed reporting of the attack in the country newspaper. The report shows which target was attacked and details the damage to the target, the number of casualties and wounded on both sides, numbers of weapons participating, number of weapons lost in the fighting and more. The report is also showing on the attack screen.
The attack round is now completed.
Attack rounds represent major computing runs with massive and complex computations of the attacks and mini attacks that process each step in details. Attack processing takes place blow by blow with each and every shot or a missile launch processed and the results recorded.
The chance that a missile will destroy a target, both on the defense and the offensive side is described in the weapons document. If a missile has a chance of 12% to hit a target, it means that randomly, about one in eight missiles will hit the target.
This random procedure that is used at the low level in the details of each attack with very high frequency, guarantees that the hit rate is accurate but the complete attack process is unique. Two attacks will never be exactly the same and as the defense is also changing all the time, attack results are never predictable in details.
Experienced players may be able to approximately predict the next attack results, based on the results of the first one but even they will be frequently surprised.
The war process is designed to be unpredictable and complex. Real battles in real wars are also unpredictable and cannot be computed in advance. The process is however fair and correct and it uses the same rules in all attacks no matter who fights on each side.
The rules might be tuned and improved from time to time but they are always applied in the same way to all attacks in all wars.