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Everything posted by Freyberg

  1. AI Question: I am trying to set up an order that will trigger when the enemy reaches a certain phase line, after which will follow a series of timed orders (shoot and scoot in effect). In the AI screen, when setting up an Order, in the bottom LH corner, there are counters and the 'wait until' button. Setting up the trigger is no problem, but the timing counter is confusing. Do the Exit Between counters refer to 'absolute' timing, i.e. relative to the beginning of the game; or are they 'relative' - i.e. if I set it to "exit between 1:00 and 2:00" the unit will wait for a minute or two and then proceed to the next order? Thanks for your help.
  2. I would be fascinated to see Israeli forces in Shock Force. Plus, given the way the Syrian conflict has played out since the release of CMSF, I would like to see militias and irregulars (such as the Kurds) featured on both sides. However, the previous BF position on including the IDF (from some time ago) was a fairly strong negative. The reasoning at the time (as I recall) was that they didn't want to be seen as too political - which is a reasonable position I guess. If they ever changed their mind, I would buy an IDF module, but I will almost certainly buy the upgrade and whatever modules and packs they release in the future regardless.
  3. Well said - I think it's amazing that BF are going to upgrade Shock Force. I was never much interested in things outside WWII before, but love that game.
  4. Fascinating - and useful! Thank you for taking the considerable time to do it. It would be wonderful to see something similar for modern weapons in CMBS.
  5. I'm sure someone has already reported this, but in CMFI the US Armoured battalion (for most dates it seems), has the Battalion and Company HQ named as 'Section HQ'.
  6. I haven't played campaigns to the degree I play scenarios and Quick Battles - they're difficult and they take a long time. I started several of the campaigns in CMFI and CMBN but only finished about half of them, although some of them were very enjoyable. In CMRT, however, I found the campaigns to be excellent. I particularly enjoyed Hammer's Flank and the one (the name I forget) where you command a Panzer division over a series of large engagements.
  7. I that the one with the little lane through hedgerows, an orchard, some Stuarts and a company of infantry...? Bloody good scenario that one...
  8. With all hundreds, perhaps thousands, of CM games I've played, statistically improbable events should be expected - but it was still fun to watch!
  9. I've had this bug very occasionally. Although it's a bug, it feels oddly realistic.
  10. I felt that way - and I'm still much more into 'The War' than the modern stuff, but I bought Shock Force when the big bundle came out cheap for Mac and it really is a helluva game. I played it exclusively one Summer. As someone else said above, it has an almost historical feel to it. I bought Black Sea subsequently, but SF has something special: the maps and settings, the surprisingly diverse forces, some very challenging scenarios. It's a very engaging game.
  11. I dunno - CMSF has a lot more than just Abrams and T55 - there's a plethora of NATO material, plus there are oodles of interesting scenarios and some quite cool QB maps. Personally I loved playing it until the game engine just felt too old and with the new game engine, more control over QBs and the play enhancements, I think it'll be a great title again.
  12. Exciting I really enjoyed Shock Force, with all the nationalities - I can't wait to play it with all the enhancements.
  13. It's a good method for map designers - and much appreciated by those of us who have played through most of the QB maps in the earlier games, especially given the AI plans for the newer titles are more advanced than the older titles like CMBN - but trying to port maps that are full of flavour objects and tiles specific to one game is not worth the effort, ASAICT.
  14. Hear hear - I've always found BF's helpdesk support to be excellent.
  15. I want help throwing money at Battlefront, too - the problem is that I own all the CM titles...
  16. Yeah, that game was frustrating, but I mostly wanted to tell the story about my dad Having had a whinge, it's true that fortifications can sometimes be fun - I guess it's just a very hard kind of scenario to design (and I do respect designers - I've tried to design my own more than once). For example there's that one in CMRT where the Soviets have to bust through an intense German fortified line and that was fabulous.
  17. When I was kid... Don't get me wrong. Mines, fortifications and engineers can be fun - they can add some challenge and colour to a game. Some of the best scenarios and campaigns I've played have featured mines and fortifications. But let me tell you about my dad... When I was a kid and my old man - my beloved old dad now - first caught me playing Second World War wargames, he wasn't pleased. He was only a boy in the war, so he hadn't seen it first-hand (he was still in primary school when it finished), but he was old enough to have found it frightening, and he'd had uncles who served, including one who was wounded. Anyway, when he first found me playing WWII wargames, he got quite indignant. "What's this?" he said, to which I replied, "it's just a game dad - it's fun." "It's 'fun' is it??" he said gruffly, "you think the war was 'fun'? Hitler and Goebbels and all those 'fun' guys?" "Geez, Dad, it's just a game." "Yes," he said profoundly, "but it wasn't just a game though, was it?!" Anyway, I've played a couple of scenarios recently that dad would have loved. One in particular - I won't name it, as a lot of work clearly went into it and to make sarcastic comments about the work of volunteers would be spiteful. It was magnificent in many ways: it was realistic, well-researched, the map was spectacular (you really felt like you were in Italy), the briefing was good, it was immersive, even the platoon leaders had names. But it was as if the purpose of the scenario was to instruct the player that the war in Italy was anything but fun. Sacrificing fun on the altar of realism... As I say, I don't mind playing against fortifications, but at a certain point it becomes tedious. In this case, I had a large number of infantry in an exposed area, who had to thread their way forward while engineers cleared gaps in minefields, all while being shelled by an array of artillery ranging from mortars to what seemed like small tactical nukes. The walking-through-minefields phase probably took 20-30 game turns, which amounted to about 3 or more hours of play. If you think clicking vehicle paths on roads is time consuming, that's nothing compared to trying to keep several companies of men, split up into teams, well dispersed as they walk team by team through some zig-zagging mine-cleared paths. There was some exciting combat in the game - but of the the nearly 200 casualties I took, over 100 were from artillery (and I gave up before the end) and probably at least 20-30 from mines. I spent most of my time micro-managing troops and giving buddy aid (although I gave up on this before the end). I know some players love realism above all else, so please take this as a personal view and not a serious complaint - and I know that the reality of war for most men was of being constantly shelled without being able to come to grips with the enemy, but it is possible to sacrifice fun on the altar of realism. Anyway, dad as he was would have loved this kind of scenario... "So, the Second World War isn't so much fun now, is it son?" "No, Dad, you're right - it's not much fun, not much fun at all."
  18. I loved Hammer's Flank. It was kind of slow, but not too slow, with enough fortifications to be challenging but not tedious; and it gave me a real respect for the Soviets - you can't just hurl your troops in, you have to balance aggression with a degree of probing nimbleness.
  19. Another development I would like to see - which wouldn't require a total rewrite of the game engine - would be enhancements to Quick Battles. I play a lot of these. It would be cool to be able to give some structure to a QB to make it more like a scenario. Being able to mix nationalities would be fun (for example I like the Italians, because they are interesting, but they don't put up a very good fight without some German support) - and it would be cool to be able direct parts of each force (randomly or non-randomly) to arrive as reinforcements. Also, when you give the enemy fortifications in QBs, the AI doesn't tend to position these very effectively. Apart from that, the AI generally does a reasonable job of positioning defenders in QBs. Given that, a nice feature, which would enhance the replayability of scenarios, would be an option to override the positioning of defenders in scenarios - so they are placed by the AI like in QBs. Often you have a really great scenario and you'd like to play it again (I sometimes get in the editor and change my force mix or nationality), but knowing where the defenders will be detracts from this. If QBs could have some of the features of scenarios, and scenarios could take on some of the randomness of QBs, that would multiply the enjoyment we get out the games while we are waiting for new releases
  20. I agree it would be cool to have, but I recall Steve describing the complex computations involved in spotting generally (of which skylining was one aspect) and the computational overhead, which would be considerable.
  21. I vaguely recall skylining being discussed on a thread some time ago, the upshot of which being that the game doesn't model it.
  22. Fortress Italy, including Gustav Line covers the longest timescale (including Winter) and contains some interesting nationalities (the Italians are a fascinating army, more typical of the early war), as well as some extremely varied terrain. 1943 formations are very different from '44. It lacks the SS though, but it's probably given the most varied gameplay and it's a close second as my favourite. CMBN is still the classic - the Commonwealth forces and MG modules are extremely rich in equipment, units, maps and scenarios, although the AI plans are not as varied as later titles. The massive range of content makes this still my favourite. I've had great fun with CMRT - the campaigns in particular. It felt samey at times, but there was a long phase where I only played Soviets in RT - they get more fun as you get used to them CMFB is good and has some groovy late war content (Jumbos and √úberpanzers), although it engaged me a little less than the others, mainly because it is similar to CMBN but lacks British troops.
  23. Most of the things I would like probably wouldn't require a new game engine. Firstly, I would like to see some changes to the scenario editor and the AI. In particular, a way to program the AI more easily, as I find this a little hard to understand and even harder to predict how an AI plan will unfold. These could be simple, general AI commands - like 'advance and manoeuver against armour', 'advance, pausing at cover if under fire', or 'defend [x] location and fall back under fire'. Obviously these are not so simple from a programming standpoint, but they would make devising playable scenarios much easier. The other thing would be some features to make house-to-house combat less fiddly - like a 'transparent buildings' toggle; and maybe tweak some of the troop behaviours against buildings, like an 'attack carefully' mode, where they don't halt on contact, as with hunt, but the also don'r run in and get slaughtered, like throwing grenades and so on - although maybe this is already modeled and I'm just using the commands wrongly.
  24. I really appreciate scenario designers, especially when it's a good scenario. I've tried it myself - it's quite difficult and rather time-consuming, especially testing, so thanks again
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