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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
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Another one of those threads! Oh well, never hurts to dream. In order of feasibility...

1 - A pre-selected retreat path command (you could set a waypoint outside the normal waypoint chain that overrides the TAC-AI's chosen retreat position)

2 - A Shoot n' Scoot command (the most important use-case would be a bazooka team being able to retreat to a pre-selected position immediately after firing a shot)

3 - More fortification objects, perhaps in a pack (H-barriers, H-barrier bunkers, guard towers for modern games; large concrete bunkers, deep trenches, shallow trenches/breastworks, concealed foxholes, combined tank-trap/barbed wire for all games)

4 - The ability to save the state of maps for later use (in a campaign, or as the map of a different scenario)

5 - A game-mode similar to Close Combat's Operations

Goes without saying that I'd be more than willing to fork over some good money for those!

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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.

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I agree there, an order to attack buildings more efficiently would be a great addition, I also think the transparent effect which could be toggled would also be a good idea, however I sometimes feel like it adds to the realism not being able to see inside properly however it would still be good 

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One thing I would like to see if it could be implemented without an excessive amount of hassle, would be a feature allowing a player to check on a potential movement path or static location and find out how easily his unit could be spotted from a specified possible enemy location. I am aware that this is a complicated issue, which is why I used the caveat "without an excessive amount of hassle". To some extent the game already does this in that any terrain that blocks LOS gets factored. What I am mainly concerned with is such things as skylining, where the critical terrain is behind the unit being potentially spotted. Avoiding skylining is a crucial skill taught to well-trained troops whether infantry or vehicular. At present, if there is an LOS traceable between spotter and "spottee" (for lack of a better term), there is a die roll and spotting occurs or not depending on the outcome of the die roll. What I am suggesting is that in a case where the subject unit might be skylined, the odds of a successful spot go way up.

Michael

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8 hours ago, Michael Emrys said:

One thing I would like to see if it could be implemented without an excessive amount of hassle, would be a feature allowing a player to check on a potential movement path or static location and find out how easily his unit could be spotted from a specified possible enemy location. I am aware that this is a complicated issue, which is why I used the caveat "without an excessive amount of hassle". To some extent the game already does this in that any terrain that blocks LOS gets factored. What I am mainly concerned with is such things as skylining, where the critical terrain is behind the unit being potentially spotted. Avoiding skylining is a crucial skill taught to well-trained troops whether infantry or vehicular. At present, if there is an LOS traceable between spotter and "spottee" (for lack of a better term), there is a die roll and spotting occurs or not depending on the outcome of the die roll. What I am suggesting is that in a case where the subject unit might be skylined, the odds of a successful spot go way up.

Michael

I vaguely recall skylining being discussed on a thread some time ago, the upshot of which being that the game doesn't model it.

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- a cinematic mode without transparent buildings and crosses for casualty s

- a new advance movement order where a unit advances until contact, engages until contact is lost, waits a choosable amount of time and continues the advance. Preferably the advance state could be toggled on/off for all movement states.

- boarding rearming and disembarking vehicles in the same turn.

 

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Having the graphics show what the actual conditions are. How dark is it? How foggy is it?

Right now, we have to guess, because nights are always a sort of twilight, and even heavy fog only shows as a kind of mist at long distances, but these things have huge consequences for the battle.

Also, I would love to see an update that fixed the graphical glitches such as shadows popping on and off, houses flickering between shaded and full-bright depending on the angle of the camera, etc.

Edited by Bulletpoint

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1 hour ago, Bulletpoint said:

Having the graphics show what the actual conditions are. How dark is it? How foggy is it?

Right now, we have to guess, because nights are always a sort of twilight, and even heavy fog only shows as a kind of mist at long distances, but these things have huge consequences for the battle.

Yes, please. +1

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2 hours ago, CAS said:

- boarding rearming and disembarking vehicles in the same turn.

I don't know about this one. Do you think you could board a vehicle, dig around in the ammo storage for what you want, pull it out, pocket it, put back the boxes, and then leave the vehicle in less than a minute?

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A command movement:

"Follow it or follow" going with and follow in the same slow speed vehicles and  tanks give mutualy fire support.

A command order:

"Cleaning" buildings.

Edited by 3j2m7

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19 minutes ago, 3j2m7 said:

A command movement:

"Follow it or follow" going with and follow in the same speed vehicles and  tanks give mutualy fire support and covers.

A command order:

"Cleaning" buildings.

The "follow the leader" or convoy command has been a much requested (and IMO a much needed) feature since the CMx1 days.  It was mentioned as being on the drawing board for inclusion in the 4.0 upgrade, but somewhere between that upgrade's inception and its release it was dropped.  Like ammo sharing between vehicles, it appears that BF couldn't get it to work within their code.

Sadly, it's being dropped from the 4.0 upgrade does not forebode well that it'll ever be part of CMx2.  If that's the case then it's unfortunate because one of the most tiresome things about CMx2 is plotting the road movements for numerous vehicles.  It's just so much micromanagement with all the waypoint setting and use of the pause command.

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1 hour ago, IanL said:

I don't know about this one. Do you think you could board a vehicle, dig around in the ammo storage for what you want, pull it out, pocket it, put back the boxes, and then leave the vehicle in less than a minute?

1)  As you probably know am a big proponent for a revamp of the work intensive ACQUIRE "routine" that is such a PITA - especially when trying to resupply a larger formation.    Am hoping that future patches or CM3 will enable units to exchange ammo and even weapons with adjacent units with reasonable and RL restrictions and time delays during which such units could not be issued any orders other than emergency "take cover" orders.

2)  A version of "Shoot & Scoot" order esp for leg AT and sniper units lying in ambush - they would wait for a target, shoot, then immediately displace to another waypoint chosen by the player.

3)  One click 180 degree arcs like we had in CM1.  Would save a lot of player time when one needs to issue multiple covered arcs in different directions at each waypoint for a larger formation as they travel via multiple waypoints.

4)  Scalable UI so we can use the higher resolution that monitors can now offer and still read the in-game text and UI.

5)  Enabling AI to move a main weapon like a MG or gun a few inches so it can shoot at a target that currently only the team's "3rd ammo bearer" can see.

6)  Making LOS determination better/easier.  Currently it is common to test LOS from a waypoint but when one's unit gets to that waypoint it does not have the LOS one expected - which raises the question "what is the point of allowing the player to test LOS from every waypoint?"  BF could even drop that feature as it's not particularly realistic anyway.

7)  For CM3 wish there was a way to combine all games to get a mega CM2 similar to how CM1 worked instead of having so many different families each with its own set of patches and modules and headaches and duplications and mods and...

Along with many of us am impatient for the CM2 family to get to 1939.  But, realistically can't see that happening for at least 5 years with current rate of development.  My concern is that CM2 engine will become dated, and players bored before that happens.  Given all the suggestions accumulated re players "wish lists" it seems that the sooner BF gets going with CM3, the better, as a new engine incorporating many of the suggestions that everyone is making would renew the excitement of the series.

 

Edited by Erwin

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9 minutes ago, Myles Keogh said:

The "follow the leader" or convoy command has been a much requested...

Sadly like you said...hope they will come back to these threat and find a solution...Thanks for these added infos.

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34 minutes ago, Erwin said:

Along with many of us am impatient for the CM2 family to get to 1939. 

I've noticed you mentioning 1939 a lot in the last couple weeks. When did they say they were taking the time period to 39? I've never seen that stated.

 

Mord.

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Huh...?   Always thought we would eventually have the timescale of CM1 so we could fight CM2 or CM3 battles from invasion of Poland onwards.   Disappointing if BF doesn't intend to provide early war experience.  You saying they don't?

Edited by Erwin

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23 minutes ago, Mord said:

I've noticed you mentioning 1939 a lot in the last couple weeks. When did they say they were taking the time period to 39? I've never seen that stated.

 

Mord.

Never listen about 39 period from BF but support with all my wishes to make it real and when there were... 39 there will be also 40 another attending must for CM (3) ...

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I always thought it was gonna be from Barbarossa on. And as far as I remember there was no 1939 or 40 in the East and Western Front CM1 games. CMBB starts in 41,  Bo in 44.  AK starts in 40, but I think that was only because of Crete?

Hey, I have no problem with it. The more the merrier. I'd personally love to see the invasion of France and all that. That would be exotic from a Western Front stand point. But I don't recall ever seeing Steve say we were going all the way back to 39 (or even 40 for France) .

 

Mord.

Edited by Mord

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5 hours ago, Bulletpoint said:

Having the graphics show what the actual conditions are. How dark is it? How foggy is it?

Right now, we have to guess, because nights are always a sort of twilight, and even heavy fog only shows as a kind of mist at long distances, but these things have huge consequences for the battle.

Also, I would love to see an update that fixed the graphical glitches such as shadows popping on and off, houses flickering between shaded and full-bright depending on the angle of the camera, etc.

3thrice :-)

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  • "Mix" as an choice for the "Service" setting in Quick Battles. Just because I would love to have an Platoon of Canadians or Polish supporting my British formations. The scenario builder allows you to use troops from multiple services, so why not also in quick battles.
  • When troops share contact information with each other (no matter whether about friend or foe, no matter whether horizontal or vertical) I would like the position for the contact marker to be updated (only seems to update it's age at the moment). Become kind of my main annoyance at the moment I think.

Plus some other things that have already been mentioned (shoot and scoot, scalable user interface, sorting out the graphical glitches, new acquire mechanic, moving weapon to get line of sight, and so on, toggle to make buildings opaque sounds interesting too).

Edited by Oliver_88

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3 hours ago, Erwin said:

6)  Making LOS determination better/easier.  Currently it is common to test LOS from a waypoint but when one's unit gets to that waypoint it does not have the LOS one expected - which raises the question "what is the point of allowing the player to test LOS from every waypoint?"  BF could even drop that feature as it's not particularly realistic anyway.

+1, and BF should've not included this feature to begin with...However, I think BF is trying to coincide RT & WEGO options together (like many other options) so that one Game Mode doesn't play out too much differently from the other. 

So,  if you said don't include this option in WEGO Mode (turn based), then how does that effect RT Mode where you are allowed to place Orders, check LOS, etc, (basically, eat-chit-sleep) every second if you wanted to (by simply pausing the game anytime you feel like it)...BF would have to implement say a 15 second Auto Pause in order to place Orders, check LOS, etc, so that both games play out closely.

Edited by JoMc67

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23 minutes ago, Oliver_88 said:
  • "Mix" as an choice for the "Service" setting in Quick Battles. Just because I would love to have an Platoon of Canadians or Polish supporting my British formations. The scenario builder allows you to use troops from multiple services, so why not also in quick battles.
  • When troops share contact information with each other (no matter whether about friend or foe, no matter whether horizontal or vertical) I would like the position for the contact marker to be updated (only seems to update it's age at the moment). Become kind of my main annoyance at the moment I think.

Plus some other things that have already been mentioned (shoot and scoot, scalable user interface, sorting out the graphical glitches, new acquire mechanic, moving weapon to get line of sight, and so on, toggle to make buildings opaque sounds interesting too).

WOW ! all that and only having 18 posts...You're going to do great things in your life, kid.

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4 hours ago, IanL said:

I don't know about this one. Do you think you could board a vehicle, dig around in the ammo storage for what you want, pull it out, pocket it, put back the boxes, and then leave the vehicle in less than a minute?

I'm in agreement with IanL on this one (for once...Ok, maybe a few times).

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I support a toggle for transparent buildings! Would make AARs easier and seems  like it could potentially be easy to implement. 😎

I'd also like tree leaves to be included in the depth buffer like bushes and grass, but I assume  they are not because of some transparency thing compared to grass? I'm not sure here but it should fix things like fire and explosions (and post process SSAO and other depth effects) from showing through trees!

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