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    • Battlefront.com

      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
choppinlt

Operational Level Game Announcement

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Hello, my name is Matt and I have a concept designed for an operational level WWII war game that can use tactical games (like CM) to resolve tactical battles that develop in my game called Combat Operations: Overlord (COO). I have been in contact with BFC for several months and they know I am “pimping” my project on their forum. Hopefully that gives you a certain level of confidence in what I am about to propose. BFC has no current designs on developing an operational level game, and they tell me they are not interested in taking a risk in COO till it is further developed. BFC also wants some indication that it will be a somewhat profitable venture. So if the CM community (and hopefully a greater market) desires an operational level game that can be used with tactical games, this has got to be a grass roots movement. I have a game design, but I am not a computer programmer/mobile developer. Nor do I have large amounts of personal wealth that can be spent to fund a project. That is where we all as a community will have to band together in order to make it happen.

Here is what I am proposing:

I am being “guided” towards developing COO as a mobile app. As the game name would imply, I will start off with June-August in Normandy ’44. If you are a computer programmer or mobile app developer and you are interested in participating in this project, please send me a list of verifiable qualifications to cmbnrocks@gmail.com. For the rest of you, we will need financial backing. At some point I will notify you all that I am going to post a project on Kickstarter to solicit funding for this project. For those of you unfamiliar I would invite you to check out more on kickstarter.com. Once the game gets developed (and if it appears to gain solid support) BFC tells me that they will strongly consider pursuing versions of the game that will be more integrated in to CM. If you are interested in seeing this project succeed, please join the forum I have set up to further discuss my project: https://groups.google.com/forum/#!forum/combat-operations-overlord-game-group

Key Game Points and Features

  • Initially this game will be strictly independent of CM. The game will ALWAYS be a standalone game, but my eventual goal is to allow it to interface with CMBN (similar to what CMC attempted in 2005)
  • COO players will receive data from my game that can be used to manually set up a CM battle they wish to fight out. Otherwise battles can be fought quickly using an in-game battle resolution system
  • If battles are fought using CM, results will be entered manually back in to my game, and play will continue
  • Players would command anywhere from Regimental size to multiple Corps or troops
  • Unit size is primarily Battalion, with some Company sized units.
  • Players would issue orders to their forces during a game pause using a “wego” style of play
  • Multiplayer
  • A fully functional Scenario Editor would be included

In conclusion, please help get the word out regarding this project so we can generate enough excitement to make this project a reality. The support from the CM community will make or break this project, so I hope you will consider supporting this effort. And finally, please join my forum listed above for further discussion.

Thanks,

Matt

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I have funded kookier ventures on Kickstarter and I have not yet been disappointed yet (though some have taken longer than I wished)

Give us a shout when it is up on KS and you can have some support.

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the thing about manual setting up the battles is really disappointing. I think there would be overwhelming support for a game which is able to interact with cm. I am still dreaming about a strategic layer for cm like in close combat games.

I am not a programmer but maybe you know how much time and effort it would cost to make at least the aar data and core unit data accessible for third party software.

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permanent666, that too has been my dream. However I have been in discussion with BFC for over a year and this is where we are at. We are working towards your dream, but this is a first step. I can't say this enough...if my project receives enough support/interest, then your dream will most likely become a reality.

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I'll fork over a hefty sum of money just to see this succeed! I've also let some friends know about this. I am very excited for this.

Great to hear! I hope there are several more out there that feel the same way!!

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poesel   

[*]If battles are fought using CM, results will be entered manually back in to my game, and play will continue

Do you have some word from BFC that, if this project flies, they will create an interface so that games can be set up automatically?

Because even the prospect of that happening would be enough for me to support your project. Else not so much. There are currently at least two efforts I know of to connect an external OP level game (one with John Tiller games and one with Vassal) with CM. Add to that various manual systems and rule sets.

So without a better connection to CM where is the advantage of your program?

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Fizou   

Very interesting. I will follow the development. It would be great with some sort of official respons from BFC to this thread to support their view of the project. And as poesel71 writes.. It would be great to know more about the program itself and what advantage it has over other "manual" efforts to get an op layer to CM.

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Do you have some word from BFC that, if this project flies, they will create an interface so that games can be set up automatically?

Because even the prospect of that happening would be enough for me to support your project. Else not so much. There are currently at least two efforts I know of to connect an external OP level game (one with John Tiller games and one with Vassal) with CM. Add to that various manual systems and rule sets.

So without a better connection to CM where is the advantage of your program?

Exactly!!

@chopinIt

Does an acute understanding of the fundamental issue for any 3rd party campaign design count as 'qualification'?!?!:

Unless you have collabaration from BF regarding release of the algorithm for decompression of the .btt data, or have independently cracked the compression method, then it's impossible to seamlessly interface data between CM battles and any 3rd party software (application of Japanzers scripts aside, which would still hit certain boundaries in any case and therefore cannot be termed seamless either).

Anything less than direct access to decryption relies on an awkward fudge in functionality between the op layer and the CM scenario editor. As Poesel71 has already pointed out, there are some very experienced CM game designers already operating their own campaigns and rule sets within these compromises. Any 'new design' cannot circumvent this fundamental problem.

Now if BF agree to release such a decryption function then I want to know about it!!

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IanL   

Having CM provide an interface to allow it to be tied to an operational layer is something I would really like. I have to be honest though I have a few concerns about this project.

Here is what I am proposing:

I am being “guided” towards developing COO as a mobile app. As the game name would imply, I will start off with June-August in Normandy ’44. If you are a computer programmer or mobile app developer and you are interested in participating in this project, please send me a list of verifiable qualifications to cmbnrocks@gmail.com.

Can you provide veritable qualifications for your game design chops? I ask this because there are three other operational layer on to of CM schemes already actually happening. One with an existing computer game. One with a game design tool box. And I forget about the first one. All three have actually conducted games and CM battles. Those three are all quite a few steps ahead of where you are.

For the rest of you, we will need financial backing. At some point I will notify you all that I am going to post a project on Kickstarter to solicit funding for this project. For those of you unfamiliar I would invite you to check out more on kickstarter.com.

I am certainly not against this - I have funded a useful kickstarter project in the past. It seems like a good way to get things done. However I submit that there is little point unless the design of the CM integration is part of this up front.

Once the game gets developed (and if it appears to gain solid support) BFC tells me that they will strongly consider pursuing versions of the game that will be more integrated in to CM.

Here lies my biggest problem. Given that there are already three operational layers out there working right now that have no integration support for connecting to CM, why add a fourth one? xkcd Standards

The only reason I can see this being worthwhile is if you can - from the start - have integration with CM. By that I mean automatically handling the order of battle both directions and the creation of the initial turns from the operational game. Otherwise you are just creating another operational game - yawn.

It is a bit of a catch 22. BFC have said they don't want to divert resources to supporting something that is not proven. Many of us who would be interested in playing CM integrated with an operational layer have little patience for spending the time it takes to manually modify orders of battle back and forth to spend a lot of time playing this way.

Kick starter might be a good way to break the catch 22. But I will say it again there is little point unless the project includes resources for BFC to actually do the work to support their half.

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noob   
Great news. Hope this works. Using the Tiller games seems to be a lot of extra work.

The only "extra work" needed to be done using the Panzer Campaigns games is learning how to play PzC , getting familiar with the CM scenario editor, and reading my CMPzC guide. Transferring data from PzC to CM is easy. Applying data from the CM battle is also easy, the only "work" part is counting casualties. However, if COO can remove some of the manual tasks that CMPzC demands, I would happily fund it. But if the manual side is similar, then it would be difficult to adopt it, considering that Tiller games cover nearly every major theatre of WW2.

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Matt, hi,

I am in... :).

BTW. Those criticizing COO for not “automatically....” setting up battles need to remember that this is a trick still far beyond CMX2 in any form even in the hands of BFC. Quick Battles have pre-programmed/built maps and AI and still have a very limited ability. Those wishing for a fully automated interaction between an operational game and CM need to be aware that the CM battles resulting would very low quality. Even if the game were taken on by BFC and CMX2 heavily tweaked to enable this.

If you wish for a quality CM battle some form of editing/setup by a player or game umpire is unavoidable.

An operational game as described in Key Game Features would transform CM :).

Good luck will follow with interest,

All the best,

Kip.

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