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womble

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womble last won the day on September 30 2015

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About womble

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  1. I was hoping to touch base with you about a project, but I see you're absent.

    Be safe.

  2. Hi womble,

    I notice that you haven't shown up on the BFC board for over three months now. I hope all is well and you will begin posting again soon.

    Michael

  3. Because the option already exists and a massive chunk of the arguments as to why development effort should be expended on this feature rather than something more useful are fallacious. As well as the option existing having ramifications beyond what the proposers recognise. Options are more complicated than "wouldn't it be nice if...".
  4. It won't be a "Battle Pack". No new models or TO&E in battlepacks. It doesn't fit as a vehicle pack, either, since the TO&E changes would be significant, even going back into Tunisia. So at the very least it would be a Module, and probably a whole new Family, given the additional "local colour" that would need to be incorporated. I think it's most likely to come out in CMx3, if the architecture choices they make in that putative future product allow for more flexible developments (like having forces separate from terrains).
  5. Aye. In CMx1. People just weren't imagining panzermartin's break being more than 9 years...
  6. And if those were standalone scenarios you could have set the time limit to 4 hours. Most scenarios get playtested. All the ones BFC put in with their modules do. Some people play slow and cautious. Some people play fast-and-loose. For there to be a scoring system, there has to be an end point, where scoring counts. It's that simple. Four hours isn't "a lot" if you've got enough units to keep fighting for that long. HvH, though, you're looking at 8 months to completion, and that's if you both manage to get your turn in every day. And it'd take a lot of reinforcements to keep it going that long, the way we, the players, end up smashing them together, cos the engine would struggle to have them on map ab initio. For any "official" scenario against the AI, you're basically a) spending a lot of game time unproductively, and 1) making the potentially carefully-crafted 90 minute AI plan mostly irrelevant. How many QBs actually go to a 2 hour limit? None IMO. Contact is made, and the CM meat grinder generally produces a result within 30 minutes of that time. So, if you want to spend 90 minutes groping for recce information that was complete within 30, you might hit the limit. The reason there seems largely to be the point ratios of QBs; even Probes give the attacker sufficient matierial advantage that it's relatively straightforward to generate overwhelming local superiority in order to dislocate a defensive scheme. That and what might be deemed "acceptable" force match-ups. There has been much discussion about "asymmetric" battles, largely focused on how to make an untenable defender's position "palatable" for the general player, and the general consensus appears to be that while technically possible, the interest-base in fighting an impossible situation "well enough" to score some weighted VP scheme high enough to beat the superior force. Same arguments apply to "understrength" attacks. So go into every scenario before you play it and bang the time limit up to 4 hours. Oh, and recognise that the conclusion you draw, especially against the AI, will largely be artificially skewed one way or another because of the extended time line. The reasons not to make it a "standard option" are pretty clear: it's not how the game or its scenarios are designed. Stating your case repeatedly doesn't fill the holes in it.
  7. Of course it's unrealistic. So are map edges. It's. A. Game. It has to have boundaries. The time limit is the boundary in time, same as the map edges are the boundaries in space. It's only irritating because the rest of the simulation is of such high fidelity. Look at figures games like Flames of War or Bolt Action: they have time limits of six turns. I'll say that again: six turns. But people love to play those games. Doesn't matter how often they were met IRL. This is not RL. That, obviously, depends. When XXX Corps missed their time objective, the Rhine crossing was stymied and the British 1st Airborne badly damaged. When Lieutenant Rupert's patrol hasn't cleared out the farmhouse by 11:00, Captain Nobb probably calls in some 25lbers to rubble it. Or Lieutenant Carruthers' platoon has scouted a gap to go round it, or Lancer Giles' stray Sherman V hooks up with Rupert and gives the pesky determined farmhouse defenders the 75mm HE good news. Or maybe they just disengage and have a brew. However, what happens outside the context of the scenario as presented is irrelevant, because it's unknown and unknowable. And there would still be time limits. They'd be "softer" but if you're going to want "flexible" time limits, unless they're reflected in scoring, you have to pretty much ignore the scoring scheme; as has been said, often the defender is so overmatched, the only thing they have that allows them to "win" is to hold out for "long enough". The maximum available length of scenarios and QBs as it stands tends, IMO, pretty much towards infinity for the game in its current form. If a designer doesn't want a time limit, he can pick a four hour battle, and the player can be as dilatory and indecisive as they like for two game-hours, and still have 2 hours to actually get onto the objectives. That might be a push with a Brigade scale action, but I'm not sure I've got the stamina for several battalions for 4 game hours, and I like large, long games. If you're still fighting a QB after 2 hours, someone has spent far too long on the approach phase. QBs are a particular problem. If you're playing them against the AI, their scripted plan cannot be arbitrarily stretched if you suddenly decide you want 20 more minutes on a 90 minute fight. It is limited as to how it can adapt at the moment to the difference between a 20 minute and a 2 hour fight. If you're playing against a human, and you care about the points, how can it possibly develop some "overtime penalty" that will match game length and type and remain fair (where "fair" is the assumed quality of the current scoring process for QBs)? Designers use time limits for numerous reasons, including narrative tension and game balance. And you can still go into all the scenarios ever produced and up their time limit to 4 hours. The only scenarios you can't extend using provided tools are Campaign scenarios, and there, the context of each battle is even more tightly prescribed than an arbitrary standalone scenario, and "interfering" with the time limits imposed by the designer starts to verge on making a mockery of their efforts at storytelling.
  8. I don't disagree. Just putting it there for people desperate to incorporate it now...
  9. There have been some suggestions in previous threads on this topic as to how a scenario designer can change the VPs allocated to a side dependent on the progression of time in the sole case of AI battles from a given side (they involve having an AI order group in some hard-to kill location move about to garner additional VPs from Touch objectives, so wouldn't work if a human was in charge of that side, whether in Single Player or HvH modes). I think it's potentially misleading to think of BFC "using Time Compression" in any active way. While combat tempo is accelerated in a CM setting compared to Real Life, it's an entirely emergent outcome from the game environment, and difficult to avoid, that fights progress more rapidly due to improved coordination and reduced concern for injury to the participants. Units don't move drastically faster, and whether they recover "morale damage" faster than real life is a mostly subjective judgement, considering we don't know exactly what each represented Morale state actually represents. It doesn't seem to me to be unreasonable that an infantry element that's been Pinned (i.e. subjected to heavy and persistent-enough incoming fire to lose the ability to conduct observation, let alone offensive operations) might start popping its head up for a cautious look and maybe thinking about shooting back, within about 30s of the incoming relenting; waiting any longer seems like it's more of a risk of one of those previously-suppressing elements scuttling up close and lobbing grenades unopposed... Thinking of "time compression" as a "game mechanic" risks misattributing effects to programming rather than behaviour.
  10. If you consider North Africa relative to FI in the same sense as Kursk will be relative to RT (which I get the feeling is how BFC would see it), you're right, nothing's going to show up soon. But then Kursk isn't going to be anytime soon, given that there's the RT and FB modules-to-end-of-war, and the BS module(s) already in the "To Do" list ahead of it, and Kursk is, I get the impression, going to be ahead of any putative NA family. But maybe by then CMx3 will have been brought to reality and the whole paradigm of product development will have shifted...
  11. Must also have detailed, accurate and complete knowledge of all game systems to accurately extract the basic concepts. Most game manuals have errors in them related to the lag between manual writing/production and the last-minute pre-release development rush. And the lack of budget allocated to ongoing documentation maintenance means they don't change, even when there's no hardcopy production element to them.
  12. .50cal SLAP can penetrate a medium tank's side armour, but that's 50 years out of period. No, even the proper HMGs weren't able to penetrate. I've tried opening up on a Panther's rear with 20mm cannon (Crusader AA) and that did nothing that I could tell, except get the tank's attention, terminally for the Crusader.
  13. I've had troopers (in good morale and suppression state) use Fausts as a first resort in room-to-room combat. Routed both assaulters and defenders... I wonder whether Faust guys don't get given any grenades and so fall back on their "only HE" when they might be expected to throw a potato masher.
  14. And Steve has commented today on the BN and BS boards regarding progress on those titles and the first announcement I've seen of engine v4 upgrade for all titles.
  15. Vehicle packs for the early war would require a metric buttload of new models. So they'd be a lot more incremental work, in that regard, than a module stepping back a year. Getting things historically correct is a big motivator for BFC's personnel, I sense. Since that would require things like TO&E changes, I'd imagine they're reluctant to do that until the "scheduled" sequence of game progression comes and they can do the whole thing "proper, like". The BN vehicle pack just added things from the same period as the existing TO&Es and added just the very few elements that the vehicle pack added (flamethrowers and some of the vehicles as options in existing command structures). That's a far cry, conceptually, from just releasing an "orphaned" bunch of vehicle models.
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