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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:

      -showui

      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
JonS

The Sheriff of Oosterbeek – A Scenario Design DAR/AAR

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Perhaps. More likely it derives from your misspelling.

:P

Michael

Hang on a minute what did i mispell? and how do i get that confused moticon to work?

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Hang on a minute what did i mispell? and how do i get that confused moticon to work?

The correct spelling (and punctuation) is "Hear! Hear!", being an exhortation to listen to someone who speaks truth, rather than "Here here" which I can only interpret (assuming that were the intended spelling) as a command to a dog, a call to a teammate to pass, or some friends to join you... ;) Not that the context allows such interpretation; I'm pretty sure you meant the "Listen to this man; hear his words," meaning, but might never have seen it written down (properly).

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The correct spelling (and punctuation) is "Hear! Hear!", being an exhortation to listen to someone who speaks truth, rather than "Here here" which I can only interpret (assuming that were the intended spelling) as a command to a dog, a call to a teammate to pass, or some friends to join you... ;) Not that the context allows such interpretation; I'm pretty sure you meant the "Listen to this man; hear his words," meaning, but might never have seen it written down (properly).

oops how silly i feel now..had a busy day that's my excuse :)

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1 - Outline Scenario Concept

”Ideas won't keep; something must be done about them.”
Alfred North Whitehead

Do I need to mention that this thread is going to contain spoilers? Lots of spoilers? Well, maybe. So here it is:

#################################################################################################
SPOILERS -- DO NOT READ THIS THREAD IF YOU WANT TO PLAY THE SHERIFF OF OOSTERBEEK BLIND -- SPOILERS
#################################################################################################

Wait till the module comes out, and then read this thread after you’ve played the scenario.

Right, let’s get in to it.

Scenarios usually begin with a hazy idea of what I want to do. There are scraps of paper pinned to the wall in my study with various ideas scribbled down, some of which eventually get worked up into full scenarios. The idea could be something read in a book that I think would make a good CM battle, or it could be a tactical problem like “hmm, what happens if an anti-tank screen is attacked by an armoured and mechanised force?”

Part of the hazy idea, or following on from it, is a question: What is the basic proposition and motivation for each side? Why are they fighting this battle, here, now? The answers help to set the scene for a lot of my later design decisions.

2-1LZX_zpsd502d031.jpg

2.1: From: Middlebrook “Arnhem 1944, The Airborne Battle”


For this scenario, given that it’s for the CMBN : Market Garden module, I was thinking about various battles in and around Arnhem itself, fought by the 1st Airborne Division. In the back of my mind lurked a recurring idea, based on something I’d read, somewhere. My memory of it is that on the second or third day, the British tried but failed to break through the growing German defensive ring around Frost’s battalion at the bridge. In the wake of their failure, the British forces fell back in considerable disorder towards Oosterbeek, closely pursued by the Germans who had some armour. In the midst of this mounting disaster a guy called “Sheriff” Thompson* stood up, took charge, and formed the first part of what would soon become the Oosterbeek perimeter.

2-2MapFailure_zpsa5d25c46.jpg

2.2: Failed final attack towards Arnhem Road Bridge, morning of Tuesday 19th September. From: Middlebrook “Arnhem 1944, The Airborne Battle”


So that’s my setting, in outline:
* UK Paras vs. German mechanised
* Brits retreating in disorder, trying to form a defensive line
* Germans exploiting success and trying to prevent the establishment of a coherent defence
* “Sheriff” playing some kind of important role
* located on eastern outskirts of Oosterbeek

At this point I’m thinking that the British force will be about company(+), maybe a little bigger, and the Germans will be 2-3 times that size.

2-3ThompsonLanding_zps5ab9f7ee.jpg

2.3: left to right: Signalman Des Wiggins, Lt-Col Thompson, Glider Pilot, Signalman "Ginger" J.D.A. Gault (DOW 2-10-1944) and Glider Pilot Captain Norman Hardie. From: Middlebrook “Arnhem 1944, The Airborne Battle”


It’s a good idea to have some kind of hook, or gimmick in a scenario. It could be emphasising a particular piece of equipment, a particular map element such as a bridge crossing a river, or some feature of the editor. Done well gimmicks can really make a scenario stand out from the crowd. Done poorly, they’re … gimmicky. For this scenario I want to try something I’ve never done before: start with no German forces on the map, and only a few British troops, then add a lot of British forces arriving in disorganised groups at random times, then start introducing the German forces in an increasing torrent. The British player will thus have to identify a series of defensive positions, then rush his arriving forces to those locations and get them set up before the Germans start arriving. That ties in with the outline narrative, and hopefully will accentuate the ad-hoc nature of the British defence.

But I’ve never tried that, and it might not work. To be honest, it’s fairly likely that it won’t work. Right off the bat I’m concerned that a canny British player might decide to just camp at the arrival area and destroy the Germans as they arrive, and the way reinforcement scheduling works in CM means that the first 10 or 15 minutes could be deadly dull. There’s also some concern because variable arrival times, which I’ll probably want to use for both the UK and the Germans, can mess with the proper execution of AI plans.

So I’ll have to be prepared to amend the concept. That’s okay though – it gives me something to work towards, and while I’d like to have it work out, I think the scenario will still work without it. I’ll stay flexible on that, and see how it goes.

2-4BritishParasinOosterbeek_zpse77eca34.

2.4: One of the most famous photographs taken at Arnhem. Armed with Sten guns and pistols, a mixed group of, possibly, paratroopers, 1st Border and Glider Pilots clear a wrecked building. In fact the search had already been completed, and they were re-enacting it for the photographer. Copyright: IWM BU1121. From: Pegasus Archive website


Back when I was working on a scenario for CMBN I came up against a much worse problem. I had recently read Armoured Guardsman by Robert Boscawen, which contained what seemed to be a good scenario prospect. He described his own experience in some detail and included a really good sketch map. I cast about a bit and came up with some other descriptions of the same event, which provided enough to be going on with. So I dived in and started making a massive map … then eventually realised that, actually, the battle I was trying to make would be kind of dull in CM terms. So that got jettisoned, and instead the map got used for a fictional but plausible reconnaissance scenario set about ten days earlier (Be Evil Unto Him), and reused in a slightly modified form for a ding-dong historical battle set about five days after that (NorMons).

Anyway, I’ve got my concept now. Next up is research.

2-5BritishABPatch_zps50e462c4.jpg

2.5: Bellerophon astride Pegasus, the British Airborne patch. From: Wikipedia website page on 1st Airborne Division


* It’s funny the things that stick in your mind. Sheriff Thompson’s name is one of those things. I think I probably first read about him and this action in the appendix to Cornelius Ryan’s A Bridge Too Far, some 25 years ago, and it’s stuck with me ever since.


. Edited by JonS

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Looking forward to this. I always thought of trying my hand at making a small scenario but found it a bit intimidating. Be good to see how one the experts goes about it. Thanks JonS...will be following closely.

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I always thought of trying my hand at making a small scenario but found it a bit intimidating.

There are a lot of separate things that you need to do, but if you start small - say, a platoon(+) vs a section(+) on a tiny map - it all becomes very manageable :)

What you can't really do, I think, is knock together a decent scenario from scratch in an evening. As long as your expectations about how long it'll take are realistic, you'll be fine.

Feel free to follow along with this thread, if you like.

A question to everyone: What hazy ideas do you all have for a tiny or small scenario?

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Is it really too much to ask people to stay on topic? You know who you are.

:rolleyes:

Apologies

Very interesting info JonS looking forward to this thread

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A question to everyone: What hazy ideas do you all have for a tiny or small scenario?

The very first scenario I ever tried to make was was loosely based on the final battle from the movie A Walk in the Sun. A U.S. platoon assaulting a fortified rural house held by a German squad with a couple of MGs. I only made a couple of AI plans for both sides but nothing seemed to work well. I didn't really know much about AI plans back then but I have a little more experience with them now. I should try to make it again.

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Ketel One vodka is the one you should get, it's actually designed for the US market and based on the Ketel 1 jenever (good dutch jenever). I've tried Ketel One here and it's good to drink pure :)

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Their National Liquor (and How They Drink It)

London dry gin, the style of gin we all grew up with, is basically flavored vodka: neutral spirits bubbled through juniper berries and a few other botanicals, cut to proof, and bottled. Genever, the spirit of the Netherlands (plus parts of Belgium, Germany, and France), is, on the other hand, more of a flavored whiskey, albeit a light one: a blend of neutral spirits, juniper and botanical infusions, and what's known as "malt wine," which is a rich, funky distillate of malted barley, rye, and other grains.

Up until around 1890, the Dutch style was what we drank here, too. Nowadays it's pretty hard to find, although it's starting to show signs of life. The newish Bols Genever, if you can find it, is a bit pricey but definitely old-school. Even more so is the San Francisco-made Genevieve, an American homage to genever that's so intense as to be a little frightening.

Equally as important is how you drink genever. The best way is by performing a kop-stoot. Characteristically, this "head butt" (see illustration above for why it's called that) couldn't be simpler: a small tulip glass of chilled genever with a short beer back. A beer and a shot. Can't get more American than that. Or more Dutch.

How to Perform the Kopstoot

1. Put tulip glass on the table.

2. Pour a small glass (6 to 8 oz) of beer and put it near the tulip glass.

3. Pour chilled genever carefully into tulip glass until it's so full that the top bulges.

4. Bending from the waist, take the first, generous sip of the genever.

5. Straighten up and have a sip of the beer.

Skip it and go straight to the Cannabis.

Nice find :)

Its actually spelled without dashes "kopstoot", the idea of it is to throw the jenever down in one go and then have the beer to relax the throat. Good when arriving at a bar significantly later than your company ;)

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Sorry for the halfOntopic ;)

Interested in this as well, have tried some stuff in the editor but it always overwhelmed me if I planned to make something serious, apart from not really having the time for it. Hell I still need to play most campaigns...

Anyway cheers for taking the time to do this and proost! :)

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the final battle from the movie A Walk in the Sun. A U.S. platoon assaulting a fortified rural house held by a German squad with a couple of MGs.

Nice!

I only made a couple of AI plans for both sides but nothing seemed to work well.

We'll get on to AI plans later on, but just quickly; getting the AI to attack competently is tricky. It's even trickier when the forces involved are small since each AI element is individually quite fragile. For my little scenarios I aim for "functional" rather than "challenging". That is, getting the AI to move forward with a modicum of coordination and in conformance to some overall plan that isn't boneheaded. That means that the player will generally win against an attacking AI* but I think that's ok.

Jon

* assuming the scenario is also intended to be playable H2H. If the scenario is only ever intended to be played against an attacking AI then there are a host of techniques that can be used to help the AI. Mostly to do with boosting relative numbers, resilience, and firepower.

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From JonS:

A question to everyone: What hazy ideas do you all have for a tiny or small scenario?

I wanted to do that Wolfheze map with Major Freddy's jeep recon lads against Sepp Kraftt's 16th Reserve Bn. But it was supposed to just be small to show how the timing came into play. Random arrival with an exit objective.

I was gonna call it "Go Freddie Gough!" :-)

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I wanted to do that Wolfheze map with Major Freddy's jeep recon lads against Sepp Kraftt's 16th Reserve Bn.

Interesting. You could perhaps do that with a small sub element - a troop or section - of the Recce Sqn and a platoon or so from Kraft.

But it was supposed to just be small to show how the timing came into play.

Yeah, hmm. Trying to use a tactical battle in CM to demonstrate wide reaching operational cause-and-effect might be tricky, I think.

I was gonna call it "Go Freddie Gough!" :-)

The name is key! Get that right, and the rest is gravy ;)

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One last post on my hazy idea...

I was thinking to use the variable range of time in arrival of reinforcements of single jeeps, maybe 3 or 4 in total, to be an indicator of them taking time to get unloaded, organized once on the ground and headed off to the objectives. Likewise on the German side, a similar variable time range in arrival of squads indicates Sepp Krafft finally realizing to spread out on his flanks, including north of the railway. Either side could head off early with less, get lucky and have it all in the beginning, etc. That is what I meant by the timing.

Looking forward to see how you handle these issues or if you even use random arrival of reinforcements.

I want to hear other guy's hazy ideas!

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My ideas:

A Scenario loosely based on the failed night attack on Bretteville-L'Orgeuilleuse by the 12SS PD against Canadian 7th Brigade. Close quarter struggle between infantry with AT-Guns and a mechanized force - at night.

Second idea is an assault on a small village in Normandy. The hook is, the village has changed hands that day (maybe even more times before) and is now an eerie place, shattered and littered with hulks. It is evening and the player has to assault again. Maybe fresh troops without experience against battered veterans?

Not new but I have a certain idea for the look.

Best regards

Olf

EDIT: Something with CAS! Never seen a strafing run in the game and I've been playing for 5 months now. :)

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EDIT: Something with CAS! Never seen a strafing run in the game and I've been playing for 5 months now. :)

prepare to be disappointed =(

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My ideas:

Second idea is an assault on a small village in Normandy. The hook is, the village has changed hands that day (maybe even more times before) and is now an eerie place, shattered and littered with hulks. It is evening and the player has to assault again. Maybe fresh troops without experience against battered veterans?

Not new but I have a certain idea for the look.

Surprised there isn't as many scenarios with this type of feel to it and I think it's a 'good hook.' Perhaps in MG there could be some historical room to do this with forces holding Hell's Highway open for the days of the operation. As a one off scenario it's possible - as a linked campaign on the same map it's a touch hard without map damage carrying over. But yes Steve's already answered the whole difference between Operation and Campaign argument before very well.

Mmm just thought of another item for the CM Version 3 wish list. Partial building collapses. :P

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