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Macisle last won the day on March 29

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About Macisle

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  1. I added an SSD to my old workhorse a few months ago, putting the OS and apps on the SSD and using my old HDD for the file libraries. That meant a clean windows 10 install. I also moved CMBN to the SSD (Documents folder is on the HDD). I had no issues installing any of my CM2 titles. All work normally. But yes, I also really hope CM3 is on the horizon.
  2. Thanks! I'm finally picking back up on the battle I posted a storyline from way back when. The German arty punished my guys pretty badly, but didn't collapse the building where I had so many troops and commanders (I was being sloppy, 'cause AI). After taking stock, I have enough combat power left to keep going. I can't really show much more though, as it would give away too many map secrets. Yeah, it's amazing how you can tell yourself this stuff over and over again and yet...you still just can't resist sometimes. My spider sense was way tingling, but I ignored it to my tank's misfortune.
  3. Meanwhile, a fresh T-34 moves up to provide overwatch for the next street crossing. It's been quiet there and a friendly assault gun in the desired position has not been attacked. The Soviet tank rounds the corner and approaches its final destination. As it does so, the distinct sound of a panzerschreck is heard from a keyhole position across the street. The German had been patiently waiting in his hiding place. Bye-bye 70 rounds of HE and 3,000 MG rounds. Every time I break the "send the tank with lowest ammo" rule...
  4. After a few point blank rounds are put into the position, Soviet troops make another attempt to take a hard point that has been giving them hell. All is looking good until another defender is spotted deeper in. The advancing Russians quickly dispatch the dazed enemy rifleman. But, suddenly, point blank MG 42 fire from a hidden position rips through them, cutting down two attackers. As the friendly "insurance" team rushes in the back door, the German gunner is spotted loading a new belt of ammo. It's not looking good for him... However, confusion reigns. The first attacking team is stunned and unable to react quickly. The second has not yet spotted the threat. The German machine gunner, on the other hand, is a crack trooper and in the zone. With steel nerves, he finishes loading the belt and rises to fire. He cuts the nearest Soviet in half as the man desperately attempts to flee. Then, with lightning speed, he delivers the same execution to the second-nearest man, who claws the floor, paralyzed with fear. But now, the second Soviet team is closing in. A Russian rifleman peers through the smoke and slowly lifts his weapon...stepping on broken glass as he does so. The sound reaches the German's ears and he instinctively spins around to its location. As the smoke dissipates, the Soviet hesitates, for fear of attacking a friendly. The German, who knows is alone, does not. It is a fatal mistake for the thoughtful Russian. But now, time has run out for the German. He is fast and deadly, but the last two Soviets keep their nerve and aim true. It is the end for him. Another stepping stone is gained at heavy, heavy cost.
  5. I was largely away from first person games for years, but picked up Post Scriptum during the winter sale. Coming from CM, the tank armor and penetration values, along with special ammo loadouts seem rather "stretched" for balance. However, that can be fixed when the sdk comes out and, allowing for the kind of realism compromises that must be made to make first person work, it's the best game of its kind I've seen for a WWII setting (if Darkest Hour had current graphics, it would be #1). I was really excited about HLL pre-release, but have lost interest due to the more mainstream direction the devs have taken it. PS is really, really good -- if, like with CM, you do the work required to play it properly. I'm not a beta tester and so haven't played on the Berlin map. However, I've been spending most of my CM time for the last few years working on and off on a dense city map for RT. With it, I've tried to push the current engine in terms of complex urban layouts and large, connected multi-section building structures. So, I should have a pretty good handle on what combat on the Berlin map will be like. The good news is that, overall, it works well enough and can be damn good -- if you are willing to put in the work to issue the detailed orders required. I've been pretty impressed with how well the engine handles the complex density of a realistic urban environment (I'm generally recreating what I see in GE down to door and window placement) and the kind of close-range firefights and FOW it produces. In fact, with so much cover around, I feel that it often works better than non-urban to keep the casualties down. The bad news is that there are still issues. As of the current build, the TacAI does suicide rout on occasion, no matter how much cover is around. Many of the buildings on my map offer "skulking" cover where a unit has multiple out-of-LOS adjacent action spots that it can fall back to, while engaging from one with LOS to the enemy. However, the TacAI will fairly often avoid these in favor of the most dangerous route. Another big problem is that generally the TacAI's first reaction to taking heavy fire when in a tall building is to drop to the lowest level directly under it. That has the double-whammy of leaving the unit in a potentially vulnerable, "known" position (when playing H2H) and adding a big workload to the player to get his units back into position as they scatter further than they need to. As I said above, on my map, units often only have to move one AS horizontally to disengage from LOS, but the TacAI very often doesn't use the feature. My hope is that the current playtesting on Berlin will yield something good in the way of game updates. However, even if it BF leaves things as is, the combat is still overall good enough. You just have to write off a certain portion of your troops to immersion-blowing howlers, but frankly, not really any more than any combat environment in current CMx2. In terms of CM's development, my position is that the "front end" of CMx2 is largely at diminishing returns. Mostly, it just needs some rough edges smoothed. However, the "back end" of CMx2 has HUGE room for improvement. By back end, I mean the Editor. It is here that I am at a point of increasing disappointment, as time goes by. There is so much that could be added to speed up and enhance content creation and add realism. For example, think how long we've had AI Area fire. But how useful is it really? As a first pass placeholder, it was great. But it's been years and we still can't increase or decrease the fire rate or choose a building level to target. We still can't use the feature with any kind of artillery, other than on-map mortars. Basically, it is only useful for very specific situations with specific units. For example, the only tank that can be relied upon to put fire on a target with reasonable intensity is the T-34/76 because of its high ammo count. I spent about 10-20 hours trying to get a platoon of AI Tigers to offer reasonable fire support on my map and have just about given up. They simply can't be relied upon to put fire on target and the testing time is crazy-long. Now, add the ability for the designer to choose building level and fire intensity -- done, and you've just reduced testing to a fraction. Another big area is AI artillery. So much to be improved there. It's incredibly time-consuming to just try to get AI pre-planned arty to use the right guns in the right place. There seems to be built-in variation, so that you can't actually be sure which asset will be used on which target every time. Couple that with the fact that you've got basically 8-9 minutes to do everything you need to do with opening AI artillery (including smoke) and it's very frustrating and time consuming. Again, for the first few years -- no problem. But by now designers should have the ability to reliably choose which assets goes where, exactly how long they fire and with any desired delays. And, all off-map assets should be available for AI Area fire and the same varying rates a human player can choose. Anyway, I could go on and on (did I mention expanding the number of Groups? Ahem). So, to wrap this up... Stalingrad-like action in current CMx2 is overall enjoyably doable. It's largely a question of map design. There are rough edges and howlers will happen, but actually about the same number as general CM. CMx2 IMO, is largely done at the front end development-wise. At the back end, however, there is a VAST amount of gold to mine that is currently untapped. And, at this late date, it's looking like a head-scratcher as to why exactly. My guess is that BF is in a difficult position from a marketing standpoint. Players want to easily see what they are paying for. Front end features are easy to see and back end features aren't. That makes a paid upgrade offering primarily Editor feature enhancements a tough sell, unless it is coupled with adequate new content showcasing the features. Anyway, in a response to a post from me, Steve very recently said that there is no current timetable for new paid upgrades. That means the back end is staying where it is for the foreseeable future. So... Will combat in Berlin be good? Answer: I think quite, but YMMV according to your subjective taste. What are my feelings on CM? Right now, CMx2 has a few front-end areas that really need smoothing, but is largely "done." However, the Editor has massive room for improvement. If that happens, CMx2 will have new legs. If not, then I'll probably just go into waiting mode for CMx3. However, CMx3 really needs to have an Editor that allows designers to make the SP experience better in less time. Otherwise, I may not spend much time there.
  6. Thanks for the update. That's great news on the new vehicles! Can you give us any word on potential paid upgrades over the next say, 6 months? My big CMRT project is on hold, waiting for the contents of CMFR. Knowing if an upgrade is in the pipeline would be very helpful going forward. If one hits within a few months of FR's release, I'd definitely want to integrate the features. I'd hate to wrap up the project, only to have an upgrade with useful features hit shortly after getting 'er out the door.
  7. Just tried again in RT on a medium map looking from one corner diagonally across to the other corner, but no joy.
  8. I tried this in RT and FB and couldn't get it to work.
  9. Oh, I know. That's the way I am with my screenshots. You probably know it, but a good trick for maxing screenie detail is to frame your shot, zoom in all the way, make sure you're on best graphic settings, and then back out just enough to get the frame you wanted again. I find that allows more detail to stay in the shot than the normal method. For example, defoliated trees that would normally lose their branches at a certain view distance will keep them longer if you use the above technique. I use it for all my screenshots.
  10. +1 to adding the ability to control air strikes during the setup phase. As things stand, I generally don't use air assets in CMRT as either player or designer because you never know when they are going to show up and the risk of attacking friendlies is so high. So, the feature is essentially useless. The only scenario I managed to get them in successfully was a vs-AI-only battle where the player had lots of time before he got any armor, a big map, lots of buildings to put his troops in, and the air assets were friendly Stuka specialized AT -- so they wouldn't attack his own infantry. I'd love to add air to my current project for CMRT, but it's simply too risky unless it can be controlled -- at least during setup. It seems to me the only real use for the current system would be to have some kind of attrition phase for a campaign, where the player's units would have to make it across a map and exit with enemy air in the skies -- but no assets on the ground, other than a hidden FO. But even then, the air might never show up. Seems a shame to waste the feature. Setup phase control (with a guaranteed arrival time) would make it usable.
  11. Yeah, I was really expecting to lose both Shermans, and thus the game, to PFs and schrecks before they could tackle the Panthers. Now, I've got to decide whether or not to risk the last Sherman to save the ATGs or sacrifice them and perhaps ping the last Panther later from a position safe from infantry. I'll probably send in the Sherman, as it will be my best opportunity for a rear shot, if I can find a way to get it to target reasonably safely. If I lose it, I still might lose the game, despite the previous successful thunder run. The Germans have a ton of infantry left, I'm sure. My regular GIs likely won't be able to hold back that much SS infantry without some kind of heavier support.
  12. He-he. Yeah, I'm a proud father of that purty little Sherman. It was a classic sudden decision point. For setup, I had two hidden Shermans (my only armor) on the enemy's right and my armored infantry co.'s ATGs on their left. Early on, a lead Panther had explored forward and traded shots with one unhidden ATG. It won the gun duel and knocked out the ATG, but then got spooked and backed into death from the Sherman side. Then, the turn before the picture was taken, the remaining four Panthers pulled up together, supported by a large group of infantry. Suddenly, it was a win or lose decision point. If I held back the Shermans, the ATGs would be wiped out and the German force would get across the bridge en masse. But, with all the German infantry around, the Shermans would likely never make it far enough to get a shot off. I decided to roll the dice and send in the Shermans to knife fight, supported by a few GIs on the ground for an attempt at the most thin of infantry screens (all I had in range). One Sherman got knocked out en route by enemy infantry AT as expected, but the second made it and proceeded to knock out three Panthers and slice up some enemy infantry in a glorious run -- the results of which are shown in the picture. After that, I popped smoke and backed out the Sherman to a safer place. I was surprised he made it out, as there is something like a company+ of SS infantry in that area. I guess I had enough area fire pouring on (various MGs, harrassing mortars and ATGs) to keep the German infantry distracted. Now, the last Panther (prolly HQ) has charged forward and is bearing on the ATGs. Another decision point for the Sherman... 🙂
  13. AT guns to the left of me, Shermans to the right, here I am...
  14. For early war German infantry, I use Sicher units and give each platoon 3 MG34s. Like you said, still can't get rid of the PFs, though. The Soviets are harder, since the only way to get rid of the high mid/late war SMG count is to go with 43 divisional recon, add LMGs as needed and use more of them to make up for the 6-man squads. I'd sure LOVE to see a 2-man vanilla rifle team unit added to the specialist team menu for each faction. Then, you could fill in the riflemen where you need them.
  15. Kings in Retirement and A Delaying Action were among the first scenarios I played when CM:BN was fresh out of the oven. I recall really enjoying both.
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