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      Special Upgrade 4 Tech Tips   12/27/2016

      Hi all! Now that Upgrade 4 is out and about in large quantities we have now discovered a few SNAFUs that happen out in the scary, real world that is home computing.  Fortunately the rate of problems is extremely small and so far most are easily worked around.  We've identified a few issues that have similar causes which we have clear instructions for work arounds here they are: 1.  CMRT Windows customers need to re-license their original key.  This is a result of improvements to the licensing system which CMBN, CMBS, and CMFB are already using.  To do this launch CMRT with the Upgrade and the first time enter your Engine 4 key.  Exit and then use the "Activate New Products" shortcut in your CMRT folder, then enter your Engine 3 license key.  That should do the trick. 2.  CMRT and CMBN MacOS customers have a similar situation as #2, however the "Activate New Products" is inside the Documents folder in their respective CM folders.  For CMBN you have to go through the process described above for each of your license keys.  There is no special order to follow. 3.  For CMBS and CMFB customers, you need to use the Activate New Products shortcut and enter your Upgrade 4 key.  If you launch the game and see a screen that says "LICENSE FAILURE: Base Game 4.0 is required." that is an indication you haven't yet gone through that procedure.  Provided you had a properly functioning copy before installing the Upgrade, that should be all you need to do.  If in the future you have to install from scratch on a new system you'll need to do the same procedure for both your original license key and your Upgrade 4.0 key. 4.  There's always a weird one and here it is.  A few Windows users are not getting "Activate New Products" shortcuts created during installation.  Apparently anti-virus software is preventing the installer from doing its job.  This might not be a problem right now, but it will prove to be an issue at some point in the future.  The solution is to create your own shortcut using the following steps: Disable your anti-virus software before you do anything. Go to your Desktop, right click on the Desktop itself, select NEW->SHORTCUT, use BROWSE to locate the CM EXE that you are trying to fix. The location is then written out. After it type in a single space and then paste this:


      Click NEXT and give your new Shortcut a name (doesn't matter what). Confirm that and you're done. Double click on the new Shortcut and you should be prompted to license whatever it is you need to license. At this time we have not identified any issues that have not been worked around.  Let's hope it stays that way Steve
    • Battlefront.com

      Forum Reorganization   10/12/2017

      We've reorganized our Combat Mission Forums to reflect the fact that most of you are now running Engine 4 and that means you're all using the same basic code.  Because of that, there's no good reason to have the discussion about Combat Mission spread out over 5 separate sets of Forums.  There is now one General Discussion area with Tech Support and Scenario/Mod Tips sub forums.  The Family specific Tech Support Forums have been moved to a new CM2 Archives area and frozen in place. You might also notice we dropped the "x" from distinguishing between the first generation of CM games and the second.  The "x" was reluctantly adopted back in 2005 or so because at the time we had the original three CM games on European store shelves entitled CM1, CM2, and CM3 (CMBO, CMBB, and CMAK).  We didn't want to cause confusion so we added the "x".  Time has moved on and we have to, so the "x" is now gone from our public vocabulary as it has been from our private vocabulary for quite a while already.  Side note, Charles *NEVER* used the "x" so now we're all speaking the same language as him.  Which is important since he is the one programming them

Drifter Man

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  1. Force structure is considered but sometimes the difference is too small to show on minute scale. What's important at the end of the day is the delay between your order and the moment shells start falling, and the declared delivery time you get for the mission in minutes is a good indication of that.
  2. Thanks both for digging out these references. One of the matters discussed in that thread is how match-up between the spotter and the firing unit affects response times. I did a bunch of tests with on-map organic 60 mm mortars and off-map 155 mm howitzers, with the following spotters: Battalion HQ Mortar Section HQ (the lowliest HQ but in direct command of the 60mm mortars) FO, assigned to the Battalion FO, assigned to the 60mm mortar section (tested for mortars only). All were regular, no leadership or motivation modifiers, and the missions were point-target medium duration/medium intensity approximately to the same spot on the map, with perfect LOS. I measured: "Receiving" phase duration - until the fire mission request is confirmed by the firing unit "Preparing" phase duration - until the first spotting round falls on the map (not applicable for on-map mortars, where I've included this phase in "Spotting" "Spotting" phase duration - until "fire for effect" order is given "Delivery" phase duration - until the first for effect round hits the map (for on-map mortars, until the round is fired) Below are the averages of (only) 3 tests for each case. It appears that Mortar Section HQ can reach its own mortars by about 1 minute faster than Battalion HQ, but in the three tests I did, it needed more spotting rounds (4-5) than Battalion HQ (3 in all three cases), so the delivery time was 6-7 minutes. Declared delivery times were 6 minutes for Battalion HQ and 5 minutes for Mortar Section HQ. Matchup with respect to force structure matters for on-map mortars, but not much. The FOs had a short receiving phase and needed between 2-4 spotting rounds. I can't say if it matters where in the Battalion the FO is attached. Force structure matters but not much. For the 155 mm Howitzers, there doesn't seem to be a big difference between Battalion HQ or low-level Mortar Section HQ in response times. Both have declared 13 minutes and achieved between 11:20 and 14:32. Battalion HQ needed 2, 7 and 4 spotting rounds, Mortar Section HQ needed 5, 5 and 3. The FO cut both communication time and spotting time by about a half, his performance matching the declared 8 minute delivery time. 2, 3 and 3 spotting rounds were needed.
  3. CMBN weapons effect tests

    Thanks, and I can respond in kind that I enjoyed your AAR and other CM videos - excellent work.
  4. I'll take note that FO can land the shells on target faster than HQ, rather than communicating the orders to fire faster. It's a guy specifically trained to do this, unlike say Company HQ team who are trained to do this and a thousand other things. Has anyone tried to compile data on artillery response time vs type of the spotting unit, its experience and position in force structure in relation to the battery? I found this, there are response time data for German artillery in CMBN, in addition to rate of fire and mission duration info, which is also useful.
  5. I'm not criticizing the game or the work of the development team - I like all they've done. I know I am nitpicking and also don't insist that anything I "find" is automatically wrong and must be fixed. More than that I want to understand certain things work the way they do. If anyone doesn't like it, feel free to ignore me. I played CMAK and CMBB for 6-7 years, then started with CMBN in 2013 and played it for about a year. After that I took a break before coming back to it a month ago. I am kind of rediscovering it. It's pretty complex so I think if you want to play it well, you need to understand the details. Yes, I've played a few scenarios all the way through - not the big ones though, they tend to jam up my computer anyway Maybe I misunderstood the role of the FO, he is just efficient at spotting for and directing artillery rather than using some special communication channels. My idea was that by having an FO on the map, I somehow get more direct access to off-map artillery.
  6. CMBN weapons effect tests

    Thanks for checking for me.
  7. CMBN weapons effect tests

    I tried typical, poor and excellent, and also June and September 1944. I have a feeling that I've seen it with an AT gun crew or in a vehicle but can't remember where. Maybe it is more common in CMFI or CMFB?
  8. So, right now I have a situation when I want to direct 60mm mortar fire on an enemy target. If the spotter is Weapons Platoon HQ, to which the mortar teams are directly subordinated: 4th mortar team, within voice communication range (but not visual - it's in woods) ... 5 minutes 3rd team, a bit farther in the woods ... out of contact 2nd team, far away but positioned next to Company HQ (right now out of radio contact with the Weapons Platoon HQ but the game probably brushes over these short-time radio failures) ... the same 5 minutes. So the Weapons Platoon HQ has to confirm with the Company HQ before ordering its own team to fire. Hmm, I was hoping he will just shout orders over his shoulder and save time. If the spotter is Company HQ or its XO Team, again, 5 minutes. So the delay due to Weapons Platoon HQ calling Company HQ first is small, if any. If the spotter is an FO ... 4 minutes. What? Doesn't the FO have to contact Company HQ and the Weapons Platoon HQ anyway? He has no other way of getting through to the 4th team in the woods. I understand that FO is good at coordinating large-caliber off-map artillery, but how can he help with the Company's organic, on-map support?
  9. CMBN weapons effect tests

    I see... it must be a rare issue, I put about 20 scout teams on the map and all had Thompsons.
  10. CMBN weapons effect tests

    Speaking of which, how do I get my hands on the M3 grease gun in CMBN? I think I've seen it somewhere but now I can't find any unit using it.
  11. Ah, that explains everything. It also reduces suppression of the enemy they ARE firing at, which makes their targets easier to hit @Oliver_88 feel free to post own your "little glitches" in this thread if you like.
  12. CMBN weapons effect tests

    Thanks. Without really knowing much about guns, I'm afraid I can't contribute much more to the debate, other than measuring parameters in the game. I get the point that kinetic energy is good because it makes aiming easier and hits more effective. There will be other effect though, like how much the hit probability is increased by firing a burst, and the ability of the soldier to control the weapon and maintain steady aim. I suspect that there are other considerations than kinetic energy alone, otherwise the Germans would want to switch to 88mm PaK 43 for every soldier wherever possible OK, I think I get it - my commonsense expectation how weapon firepower changes with distance may not apply to SMGs. Actually I didn't mention it. Thompson has a shorter range in the game. Troops with Thompsons will engage enemy within a target arc at ca 170 m but no farther than that. At least they didn't for me.
  13. CMBN weapons effect tests

    As I read through the MP44 vs SMG debate, I think it's useful to show some graphs in normal rather than log scale. It gives a better idea of the absolute differences between the individual weapons. So, this is firepower and accuracy for rifles and SMGs only: For instance it shows clearly that the superiority of the Thompson over the other SMGs (Sten, MP40) is significant, by about 20%. It also illustrates the main question I have: As could be expected, the firepower of rifles goes to nearly nothing at their maximum range (Kar 98K and Lee Enfield will engage enemy within their target arcs up to about 320 m, Gewehr 43 and Garand up to ca 400 m, but I couldn't make all teams shoot at 400 m so 320 m is their maximum here). On the other hand, the SMGs keep their high firepower - same level as rifles at 80-120 m - out to their maximum range, where they suddenly stop. Whatever the weapon is and however it works, wouldn't it be reasonable to expect that it's power will decrease with distance until almost zero, rather than staying high and then ending abruptly? Also, wouldn't it be reasonable that fewer kills should be achieved per round fired as distance increases? Neither of this applies to SMGs in CMBN. Yes, it switches to semi-auto at 150 m, which you can see as a sudden increase in accuracy between 120 and 160 meters (yellow line).
  14. CMBN weapons effect tests

    I hope to finish CMBN but want to wait until it gets updated, but don't plan to go do CMSF/CMBS as I don't even own these titles. But if someone wants to give it a try, I can share my tools - I have a script that runs the tests and counts casualties, so measuring "bodies per minute" mostly about setting it up and letting the computer run overnight. Unfortunately, rate of fire (ammo consumption) still has to be counted manually, which is annoying. Oh that's ok - I understand his point that you don't need these numbers to enjoy the game, and respect his opinion that there may be other important things to work on.
  15. CMBN weapons effect tests

    I reloaded them from the truck before the test, so they carried all their ammo with them. 1000 rounds for rifles, 2000-3000 for SMGs, 3000-4000 for MGs. In all cases it took about 7-8 seconds to reload any weapon in the test. HMGs need a bit more time (about 15 seconds I think) but I didn't get to testing HMGs.