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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
John Kettler

Aware CMBS doesn't do national characteristics, but...

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What I want to know is given that troop quality is standardized, how are such vital things as training time deltas and goodness of training reflected in CMBS? Seems to me that a force with guys who fire tens of rounds a year and are out there a lot on the maneuver grounds as a unit, rather than firing, say, 3 rounds/year and doing almost all live training for the company in one tank are going to have quite a performance edge, especially if they've been doing this for years. As a case in point, I remember gasping aloud when I read in SECRET level docs during the Cold War the Russian pilots were, I believe,  getting a fourth of the monthly time aloft the US pilots were. As a case in point, while I'm sure that the significant use of contract soldiers has greatly improved Russia's situation vs the US for tank crews over what it was during the Cold War, just how well do Russian tankers stack up, man for man, when it comes to the metrics I've described? How should the differences I know are there be modeled in the context of the existing game? Also, how much better can the less well trained force get as a result of seeing combat? These are serious questions which can just as easily be applied to Russia vs Ukraine. To be clear, am excluding altogether Morale and Fatigue from the issues above.

Regards,

John Kettler

Edited by John Kettler

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@John Kettler 

I always assumed that lack of adequate training was already built into the UKR and Russian forces. It always seemed to me that their "veteran & elite" were only at the level of "regular & veteran" in the US forces...

Am I wrong in believing that FO's get a quicker response time from artillery units once they have "established a relationship" by completing a fire mission with that artillery unit? As in...the 2nd, 3rd, etc follow up calls for fire take less time b/c the link has been established?

And...whoever suggested somewhere on this forum about allowing "veteran" and above FO's w/laser designators to call in 1st round FFE (like TRPs)...I wholeheartedly agree!

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Apocal   
10 hours ago, John Kettler said:

What I want to know is given that troop quality is standardized, how are such vital things as training time deltas and goodness of training reflected in CMBS? Seems to me that a force with guys who fire tens of rounds a year and are out there a lot on the maneuver grounds as a unit, rather than firing, say, 3 rounds/year and doing almost all live training for the company in one tank are going to have quite a performance edge, especially if they've been doing this for years. As a case in point, I remember gasping aloud when I read in SECRET level docs during the Cold War the Russian pilots were, I believe,  getting a fourth of the monthly time aloft the US pilots were. As a case in point, while I'm sure that the significant use of contract soldiers has greatly improved Russia's situation vs the US for tank crews over what it was during the Cold War, just how well do Russian tankers stack up, man for man, when it comes to the metrics I've described? How should the differences I know are there be modeled in the context of the existing game? Also, how much better can the less well trained force get as a result of seeing combat? These are serious questions which can just as easily be applied to Russia vs Ukraine. To be clear, am excluding altogether Morale and Fatigue from the issues above.

Regards,

John Kettler

There is almost certainly more variation between a rapidly deployed (i.e. greatly shortened pre-deployment spin-up cycle, no NTC/JRTC rotation, crucial training pencil whipped) National Guard BCT and an active duty US Army BCT than there is between the deployed portions of the Russian forces and that same US Army BCT. So national characteristics shouldn't be as much a thing and the experience slider can account for difference in skills. Plus the national characteristics thing in CMSF was one of the big community bugbears.

47 minutes ago, cbennett88 said:

@John Kettler 

I always assumed that lack of adequate training was already built into the UKR and Russian forces. It always seemed to me that their "veteran & elite" were only at the level of "regular & veteran" in the US forces...

I assumed it was because they didn't have night vision and Javelins. Night and facing down armored anything is when I notice the biggest different between forces, so I chalked it up to equipment rather than skill, which is reasonable. It isn't like going to the (small arms) range three or four times a month is expensive in military terms and that should be enough to maintain a reasonable level of proficiency with weapons. And going to the field costs figurative pennies.

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3 hours ago, cbennett88 said:

I always assumed that lack of adequate training was already built into the UKR and Russian forces. It always seemed to me that their "veteran & elite" were only at the level of "regular & veteran" in the US forces...

I thought this for a very long time myself, until a friend of mine pointed something out. C2 and to a lesser degree equipment widen the gap between a "Regular" US squad and a "Regular" Russian/UKR squad. A US squad will see the enemy faster (better optics) and will pass on information faster and more efficiently (more and better radios) and engage the enemy more accurately (weapon optics, thermals, etc) than other similarly trained squads of other nations. All of those effects stack to give the US squad an advantage over the others. If a modern Russian squad from Black Sea fought against a US squad from one of the WWII titles, and all soft factors were the same (training, motivation, etc) the US squad would have a very rough time. 

So the way I look at it now is that all training tiers are the same across the board, and the difference in performance lies in the details and peculiarities of each nation. That all being said, I would not be surprised if there was some under the hood modeling of training quality, nor would I have any problem with that as I think its realistic and suspected it to be that way for a long time anyways. 

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c3k   
16 minutes ago, IICptMillerII said:

I thought this for a very long time myself, until a friend of mine pointed something out. C2 and to a lesser degree equipment widen the gap between a "Regular" US squad and a "Regular" Russian/UKR squad. A US squad will see the enemy faster (better optics) and will pass on information faster and more efficiently (more and better radios) and engage the enemy more accurately (weapon optics, thermals, etc) than other similarly trained squads of other nations. All of those effects stack to give the US squad an advantage over the others. If a modern Russian squad from Black Sea fought against a US squad from one of the WWII titles, and all soft factors were the same (training, motivation, etc) the US squad would have a very rough time. 

So the way I look at it now is that all training tiers are the same across the board, and the difference in performance lies in the details and peculiarities of each nation. That all being said, I would not be surprised if there was some under the hood modeling of training quality, nor would I have any problem with that as I think its realistic and suspected it to be that way for a long time anyways. 

This.

Training is training. If two forces (different nationalities) have the same experience level and the same equipment, in-game the two units will be equal. 

Same experience level, but different equipment, will mean different in-game advantages/disadvantages.

Motivation also matters.

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The only thing I will add to this is. I know more than once I have read Steve saying, They do not do anything in the game engine to reflect differences in the different troops from different nationalities

The only setting that impact them are the ones we have access to, (Experience, Motivation and such) So if you were to set both sides with the exact same settings, then the only thing that is showing a difference is the equipment and the organization of units.

But with the settings we have, it does allow for creating any perceived advantages or disadvantages we believe certain units have.

I think the CMFI game shows how with them just providing the organization and equipment correctly with the units, you can create the feel of a certain nations troops. Playing them Italians, you learn quickly why they were not very successful  in WWII,  I think the games provide enough to allow us to reflect most any unit.

 

Edited by slysniper

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4 hours ago, c3k said:

This.

Training is training. If two forces (different nationalities) have the same experience level and the same equipment, in-game the two units will be equal. 

Same experience level, but different equipment, will mean different in-game advantages/disadvantages.

Motivation also matters.

I do not have any access to how the developers set things up...  or to any"definitive proof" in the form of a saved game to show everyone. It is simply my observations during gameplay(and yes, I realize my assumptions based on that can be wrong). IMHO...US troops seem to break and run less often while under fire(both sides being similarly motivated), reload faster(vehicles and crew served weapons), call for artillery, and perform "medic" duties much quicker. Even the fact that only officers and FO's on the Russian side can call artillery vs pretty much anybody ;) on the US side. 

The equipment advantage that the US enjoys I totally understand. I hope that IRL the US ALWAYS experiences that! In the game though, I want both sides to have an equal chance at winning. Since Russian weapons aren't a "fair/equal match" (the Tunguska being the BIG exception!), I usually try to offer whoever plays the Russian side a 10%-15% points advantage. Use it to buy higher experience  level troops. Buy 3X the ATGM teams to try and equal the US "superweapon" Javelin. Whatever...

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Guys,

My point here is that there's training, then there's TRAINING. My argument is that this ought to matter considerably, because it most certainly does when bullets, rockets and missiles start flying. Consider, for example, the USAF's RED FLAG program. It was set up after the Air force found that ten combat missions were the hump a new to combat pilot had to get over in Vietnam in order to have good survival prospects over the long haul. RED FLAG was designed to provide artificial combat experience which was as close as possible to the real thing, and this was found to have excellent effect when these far from newbie (in terms of learning how to function in very realistic high stress scenarios) fighter, fighter bomber and bomber crews got into real combat. That's the sort of distinction I'm drawing. The Army got into computerized tank simulators after one Armor general noticed how many EM were absolutely riveted at the PX to a pioneering 1980 very simple wire frame vector drawn Atari arcade game called Battlezone. It was that game which became the launch pad of revolutionary tank warfare simulators, such as UCOFT. For the longest time, nobody had anything remotely similar, just as nobody had the super high tech NTC, either. My argument is that these factors matter, both theoretically and in battle and are independent of nationality.

Battlezone
 

Regards,

John Kettler

Edited by John Kettler

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Not saying training does not matter, it does, But in the game it is nothing more than experience and leadership factors. You reflect it in that. I do not think it has a category of its own. No need for more programming or a special program for certain countries

 

Even by your own example, all the training did was get a pilot to a similar level as to one who had flown so many combat missions. it helps, how is that not something already available to portray in the settings we have.

 

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IanL   

Just to be clear there is no code that gives an advantage to unit based on its nation of origin. There is no code that gives an advantage to equipment based on its nation of origin. The values for training, morale and leadership mean the same for everyone and units with a particular value behave the same no matter what nation a unit is from. For equipment BFC have made an honest assessment of their capabilities based as much as possible on evidence and using educated guesses for any gaps. So if you could give the same gear to another nation and you then set their soft factors the same they would perform the same. The advantages you see in the game are because seeing better, reacting quicker matter and make a difference. So if its training that give a particular unit advantages over another or it has better gear that give them advantages they reflect reality not some code that helps out one nation over another.

Let us also be clear mistakes have been made - many have even been fixed. Let us also be clear that many hear have, shall we say, interesting ideas on the performance of equipment. Those two things are not likely to change. We will have lots to discuss around what is a bug and what is not and whether <insert piece of gear here> really does perform that way in real life. By all means lets have those discussions - like I could stop you guys :D  But do not forget the basic truth - there is no coding that makes units from nation X perform any better than units from nation Y.

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5 hours ago, John Kettler said:

My point here is that there's training, then there's TRAINING.

Right, and the game gives you the ability to reflect this. The training levels of units can be relative. If you want to show that US troops are much better trained, then you can set them at a higher training level then their opponents. For example, set the US to "Veteran" and the Russians to "Regular." Or you can set the US to "Crack" and the Russians to "Veteran." It can be used as a relative scale. The WWII titles show this off a lot, particularly with Airborne forces. In most scenarios they are set to "Veteran" or higher with very high motivation to reflect their better training. 

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IICptMillerII,

Your point is valid, I believe, when it comes to scenario design and vs AI QBs, but I think it would be a tough sell in a vs Human situation. "My Veteran tankers are better than your Veteran tankers because of superior training and should therefore perform better. You may not play at any rating above Regular because your guys shoot 3 rounds/ year and are hardly ever out as a formation on the maneuver grounds. Yeah, that'll be easy to sell!  Would like to see some sort of a toggle to reflect, perhaps using fuzzy logic, the typical training levels of the various forces involved. Definitely don't have the details worked out, so this is more the germ of an idea. 

Regards,

John Kettler

 

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14 minutes ago, John Kettler said:

IICptMillerII,

Your point is valid, I believe, when it comes to scenario design and vs AI QBs, but I think it would be a tough sell in a vs Human situation. "My Veteran tankers are better than your Veteran tankers because of superior training and should therefore perform better. You may not play at any rating above Regular because your guys shoot 3 rounds/ year and are hardly ever out as a formation on the maneuver grounds. Yeah, that'll be easy to sell!  Would like to see some sort of a toggle to reflect, perhaps using fuzzy logic, the typical training levels of the various forces involved. Definitely don't have the details worked out, so this is more the germ of an idea. 

Regards,

John Kettler

 

Isn't this also built in as a QB option? I haven't used this much but I believe when selecting forces you can choose "Typical" quality, which assigns soft values according to what the game thinks the average forces of that type would've had. So Veterans are still Veterans and +1 leaders are still +1 leaders, but you're more likely to get Veterans in historically "good" formations and -2 leaders in historically "bad" formations. So if both players want to limit themselves to a little more accuracy to historical training/experience levels, it's possible.

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LukeFF   
18 hours ago, cbennett88 said:

Am I wrong in believing that FO's get a quicker response time from artillery units once they have "established a relationship" by completing a fire mission with that artillery unit? 

Yes, you are wrong. :) 

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5 hours ago, LukeFF said:

Yes, you are wrong. :) 

Damn! So much for all those "practice FFE missions" early in a battle, in hopes that rounds will come sooner later on when I REALLY, REALLY, need them! :D

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Even in WW II US FOs could and did register TRPs on the fly, which were then used to rain destruction on attacking German troops practically as soon as they were set. Read such an account myself, but unfortunately don't recall in where.

Regards,

John Kettler

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Apocal   
16 hours ago, John Kettler said:

For the longest time, nobody had anything remotely similar, just as nobody had the super high tech NTC, either. My argument is that these factors matter, both theoretically and in battle and are independent of nationality.

 

And now they do, so... just crank the experience level higher or lower as you see fit.

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DMS   

Does U.S. squad have thermals? Or they spot so good in the game just because of weapon optics? Night vision shouldn't give any bonus daylight, right?

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11 hours ago, LukeFF said:

Yes, you are wrong. :) 

Not entirely wrong.  Requesting an Excalibur fire mission from a battery will lower the response time by 1 minute for the subsequent mission.  I do it all the time.  

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DMS   
Just now, TheForwardObserver said:

Not entirely wrong.  Requesting an Excalibur fire mission from a battery will lower the response time by 1 minute for the subsequent mission.  I do it all the time.  

No, it's time without spoting. If you call regular fire mission, time will be longer.

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8 minutes ago, DMS said:

No, it's time without spoting. If you call regular fire mission, time will be longer.

Fire up a quick battle, add in some FOs and artillery batteries.  Begin the game.  Look at the fire mission times before calling in the mission.  I'm seeing 4 minute times right now.  Request an Excalibur mission.  Let the mission run its course.  Now select that same artillery battery, it should now show a reduction in time for the next subsequent mission of any type by 1 minute.  
 

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42 minutes ago, DMS said:

Does U.S. squad have thermals? Or they spot so good in the game just because of weapon optics? Night vision shouldn't give any bonus daylight, right?

Yes they do, if equipped. Its the TWS, which is a thermal optic. 

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MikeyD   

I read complaints a short while ago that US Army is not doing enough squad and platoon-scale tactical drills (of the type done in CM scenarios). The Pentagon has a heavy logistics/bureaucratic mindset, the guys carrying the rifles aren't necessarily at the top their priorities list. Stocking the base PX takes priority. I'm not saying these complaints are at all accurate, I'm just using it to illustrate the dangers of blindly using 'national modifiers'. Hubris is not a combat capability. Believing your the best can be a disadvantage on the battlefield, especially if you're not really the best. You underestimate your opponent at your own risk.

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15 minutes ago, MikeyD said:

Believing your the best can be a disadvantage on the battlefield, especially if you're not really the best. You underestimate your opponent at your own risk.

100% agree.  Reflexive underestimation of potential adversaries is a staple characteristic of the western [american] way of battle though.  I call it "America f__k yeah syndrome."

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