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Fire suppression from small arms discussion

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I can certainly attest to the effects of sleep deprivation. But I think as far as CM is concerned, we have to distinguish between the effects of sleep deprivation and the effects of otherwise rested troops having just run a few hundred meters. It seems to be the case that what the developers had in mind was the second case and that at present there is no way to accurately depict the case of extended sleep deprivation.

Michael

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Sleep deprivation and driving are far different than sleep deprivation and combat.

Driving...One is in monitor and react mode. Humans are notoriously poor at long-term monitoring tasks. Snooze-fest, right?

Combat...adrenaline does a wonderful job of jolting one out of complacency. So, yes, sentries may be surprised. That's a performance degradation. But when the bullets are flying, not many are nodding off in boredom. 

I would contend that CM is more concerned with modelling the "bullets are flying" portion rather than the "sentries are pacing" portion.

(Dream world: the game would simulate, at the individual pixeltroop level, events which would cause an adrenaline burst...and then the crash aftereffects from it about 5 or 10 minutes later. "Combat Mission: Endocrine Unleashed". ;)  )

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4 hours ago, c3k said:

Combat...adrenaline does a wonderful job of jolting one out of complacency. So, yes, sentries may be surprised. That's a performance degradation. But when the bullets are flying, not many are nodding off in boredom. 

The thing I mean to point at is not a matter of nodding off and then snapping to due to adrenaline rush. Yes, at such times any animal will draw on its reserves to go another round. But there comes a point when there is nothing left in the reserves box. It just isn't there; it's all been used up and until something has been put back into the box, that trooper isn't going to be able to do much good. But even before that point—and this is what those cited articles are saying—performance starts to degrade even when the trooper is "wide awake". A wise commander knowing this will try to ensure that his troops as well as he himself will get enough sleep to not get to the point where judgement and performance will begin to plummet.

Michael

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48 minutes ago, Michael Emrys said:

The thing I mean to point at is not a matter of nodding off and then snapping to due to adrenaline rush. Yes, at such times any animal will draw on its reserves to go another round. But there comes a point when there is nothing left in the reserves box. It just isn't there; it's all been used up and until something has been put back into the box, that trooper isn't going to be able to do much good. But even before that point—and this is what those cited articles are saying—performance starts to degrade even when the trooper is "wide awake". A wise commander knowing this will try to ensure that his troops as well as he himself will get enough sleep to not get to the point where judgement and performance will begin to plummet.

Michael

Agreed.

I would think doing tests with troops "Exhausted" in red (with a +2?) would show some poor spotting and accuracy. Gonna be tough to figure a test regime for that.

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Posted (edited)
27 minutes ago, c3k said:

Agreed.

I would think doing tests with troops "Exhausted" in red (with a +2?) would show some poor spotting and accuracy. Gonna be tough to figure a test regime for that.

For the accuracy test I did multiple runs with first a rifle squad and then a sniper team firing at an infantry targets at various test ranges. Each test condition was repeated 5 times. The tests were broken up as follows;

Fatigued vs Rested at 100m ,200m, 300m

+2 Leadership vs -2 Leadership at 100m ,200m, 300m

+2 Motivation vs -2 Motivation at 100m ,200m, 300m

+2 Fitness vs -2 Fitness at 100m ,200m, 300m

Elite vs Conscript at 100m ,200m, 300m

 

The only soft factor which consistently affects accuracy is experience.

Similar results were found when testing for spotting.

Edited by Josey Wales

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Posted (edited)

Interesting. Personally I like the vagueness too, makes it more difficult for me to (subconsciously) game the system instead of trying to use actual tactics. Of course that doesn't mean all commands should have 'magic functionality', so long as a command performs more or less as how one would expect it to function (according to RL or manual) it's fine from a design standpoint.

C2
In the CMx2 games I've played, having troops in C2 definitely made a difference when in contact with the enemy. With regards to morale: the lower the experience, the more important C2 is in my experience. The importance of information sharing is (also) very situational. Keeping long distance (AT) weapons in C2 with eyes up front can make a big difference. Whether C2 is worth risking your HQ running across open terrain, that's once again up to the context imho.
My strategy: In ww2 era I generally try to remain C2 at all times, apart from scouts/sentries and the like. In modern ERA C2 is most of the time less of a concern. For NATO/US/RUS/UKR it isn't because almost everyone has a radio/pda whatever. Because of that I generally try to keep the HQ in safe positions with good observation  or inside IFVs providing overwatch. For Syrian / unconventional units maintaining C2 is often not really a viable option, so I adjust to that.

Fatigue
I had always assumed tired/exhausted units would also degrade combat performance. Although thinking about it, fatigue is only really a factor in offensive/maneuver situations where being able to make a sudden quick/fast dash IS important for having tactical options and or keeping the initiative, so I guess this new knowledge won't really change how I will order my troops around.
A question someone may know the answer to: does fatigue affect spotting?

Edited by Lethaface
alcohol

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One of the points made in some of the studies is that troops get to the point where neither adrenaline nor motivation will offset the sleep deficit. I cited only a few items from a sea of them. Am of the firm opinion that for those wanting to see more realistic troop behavior, the men should already, unless well rested reinforcements (or at least less fatigued) routinely have at least one fatigue hit on them. Then, when they go haring across the battlefield under fire, they are more likely to behave as their real world models did. As noted earlier, tired troops can still shoot tight groups, but their ability to read the situation and respond rapidly and effectively are considerably-massively degraded, especially in chaotic situations. If that doesn't happen in the game, then I believe some way to depict that needs to be found.

Regards,

John Kettler

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21 minutes ago, John Kettler said:

One of the points made in some of the studies is that troops get to the point where neither adrenaline nor motivation will offset the sleep deficit. I cited only a few items from a sea of them. Am of the firm opinion that for those wanting to see more realistic troop behavior, the men should already, unless well rested reinforcements (or at least less fatigued) routinely have at least one fatigue hit on them. Then, when they go haring across the battlefield under fire, they are more likely to behave as their real world models did. As noted earlier, tired troops can still shoot tight groups, but their ability to read the situation and respond rapidly and effectively are considerably-massively degraded, especially in chaotic situations. If that doesn't happen in the game, then I believe some way to depict that needs to be found.

Regards,

John Kettler

@John Kettler - We're talking about "fatigue" effects in the Combat Mission games, not in real life.  Your well researched references don't apply.  Hence, LukeFF's note to move past them.

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Badger73,

The issue was whether Fatigue in the game affected spotting and shooting performance. Tests showed it doesn't, which was highly counterintiitive based on what I've read in hundreds of accounts and a few things I've heard from combat veterans, too. This caused me to find evidence real world fatigue, let alone broken sleep on top of sleep deprivation,  has all sorts of effects not presently modeled in CM but which would appear to be highly germane to a combat sim. I'm arguing that such known and identified fatigue effects should be reflected in the game, especially given what we now know about their impact even on a firing range with none of the other factors I named earlier in effect. Believe this is a perfectly valid argument to make here in order to perhaps prompt further discussions (and maybe code tweaks) of what seems to me to be somerthing of real significance in modeling combat dynamics properly. 

Regards,

John Kettler

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Ooooh real life, can we also model the effect of amphedamines, cafffine, and perhaps some hooch. Shouldn't be too hard to code or is it already coded in V4 as the erractic behavior of some pixeltruppen.B)

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I don't understand the childish downplaying. 

13 hours ago, Lethaface said:

Please stop beating a dead horse... just ignore, I will try to do same ;-)

What is the purpose of this comment? 

On 3/1/2018 at 10:00 PM, LukeFF said:

Moving right along... <_<

And this? 

I think you have a great point John. A fatigue feature which affects more than just running speed would come with a very welcome yet drastic change in gameplay. 

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Posted (edited)

Artkin,

Thanks. BFC could, as a first pass, I believe, introduce it and apply "fuzzy logic" to each man who is Fatigued. It wouldn't affect marksmanship, though I can assure you from direct experience that you can be so worn down it's effectively impossible to read, eyes swim, occasionally seeing double, situations with all sorts of military implications, but it would have some unknown to the player impact on Spotting and Reaction Time. This would kill the ability of cunning players to game it to game it, since its effects would never be known until it was too late, though reasonable guesses could certainly be made. Some of the study curves could be employed to show the general trend line over time as sleep is lost, but then the fuzzy logic would be applied.

The ability to high function while Fatigued could also be tied to Experience and Motivation. Airborne troops are elite for very good reasons, and it relies on having the best candidates, rigorous selection processes and arduous training the line doggies generally don't get, never mind the luckless guys farther down the martial excellence chain. Mind, this isn't to say military miracles while way behind the eight ball like that aren't possible, just ever more unlikely. This is also why, when possible, high quality troops constitute the reserve, for it is they, other things being equal, who are likely to be most functional and possessed of the most combat nedurance. Suvorov/Rezun, who commnaded both a Motorized Rifle Company and a Tank Company, says this was standard practice in all levels of the Russian Army during his service, and I seriously doubt it was different during the GPW or is now. You want the battle winners to be available when the critical time and point are reached in the fight.

Working from first principles, in theory what I propose is doable and could be done under the hood, as so much is, but that may be just that, theory. Am no code jockey, still less one for BFC's proprietary code.

Regards,

John Kettler

Edited by John Kettler

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14 hours ago, John Kettler said:

Tests showed it doesn't, which was highly counterintiitive based on what I've read in hundreds of accounts and a few things I've heard from combat veterans, too. This caused me to find evidence real world fatigue, let alone broken sleep on top of sleep deprivation,  has all sorts of effects not presently modeled in CM but which would appear to be highly germane to a combat sim. I'm arguing that such known and identified fatigue effects should be reflected in the game, especially given what we now know about their impact even on a firing range with none of the other factors I named earlier in effect.

Here's what I am thinking now. BFC has chosen not to model the effects of long-term sleep deprivation. They just didn't try to go there. Instead, what they are modeling is the more or less temporary effect of greater than normal exertion. They are winded after running up a hillside in hot weather while perhaps carrying heavy equipment or something of the sort. Recovering from that only takes a few or many minutes, depending on how deep that weariness extends, but it does not effect judgement and perception the way that sleep deprivation does.

Sleep deprivation, especially if prolonged, is a different animal. It does effect performance and is not much effected by just taking a breather. In short, troops are not apt to show any recovery during the course of a CM game. For better or worse, it simply is not modeled in CM. We can argue over whether or not it should be present, but as usual, I expect BFC to keep its own council on this issue.

Michael

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For an individual scenario sleep deprivation can be "simulated" by using lower quality troops then would be normal.  If a campaign could allow pushing the troops and having them be a lower quality level in the next scenario that would be a nice feature too.  I don't play campaigns so I don't know if that is already in there.

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I'm sure folk who want this incorporated in game can post an algorithm / flowchart of fatigue in action as an easy guide for Charles programming this up.

Plus they'd need to take into account the wartime use of amphetamines (add these to supply options) to counter fatigue but there was evidence that abuse of amphetamines produced “restlessness, tremors, insomnia, talkativeness and irritability…Confusion, assaultiveness, hallucinations, delirium, panic states and suicidal or homicidal tendencies have also been observed,” according to a 1941 pharmacology textbook. These extreme unpredictable states as a consequence could save BFC a lot of time as this could easily explain pixeltruppen under HE dashing into the open etc. and be marketed as game features rather than bugs ;-)

Or the players could pull an all nighter and smear their glasses with Vaseline and attempt to play CM wearing thick mittens whilst sitting in mud filled ditch to replicate combat conditions - which was the similar solution to a couple of folk who wanted NBC capabilities modelled in CM.

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Drugs... Germans... lol. 

I'm unsure about modeling fatigue through restlessness. 

However, physical fatigue would be a very desirable feature. Granted it sounds difficult to implement due to various reasons. Still, it would help distinguish Battlefront as a "sim" as opposed to other games. 

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1 hour ago, Dynaman216 said:

For an individual scenario sleep deprivation can be "simulated" by using lower quality troops then would be normal.  

This might be the easiest solution.  Fitness ratings in the Editor can be set at Fit, Weakened and unfit.  The unit attributes (soft factors) in the editor can be combined and used to create the desired result of a lot of this type stuff.  In fact its probably one of the reasons Charles created it and placed it in the editor allowing us to manipulate the results.  

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I think what we're interested in is a dynamic fit - weakened - and unfit system which would dynamically change in real time. 

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While all sorts of gildings and interpretations are possible, the main point of my argument is that Fatigue should directly affect Spotting and Reaction time (no idea how to model impact on decision making quality, but one of the studies does look at the progressive degradation in the functioning of an artillery battery), though as we've seen, not gunnery accuracy per se. There is considerable evidence in soldier's accounts that simply seeing clearly becomes an issue, too.  Which target to you shoot at when seeing double? How do you aim accurately when your eyes are swimming? Battlefield accounts speak of men so worn out and mentally exhausted they don't react to incoming fire and have to be yanked down by one or more higher functioning comrades. They aren't looking for the million dollar wound, just lack the energy to do much of anything.

I've had plenty of days and nights here where simply getting up and down the stairs to raid the kitchen is more than I can manage. Fortunately, I have a medium sized fridge/freezer and an array of dry goods up here, else I might not eat when I'm that run down. The upshot of being oft too wiped out to make the trek is that I frequently go for days without hot meals. And I'm not under fire, burdened with a pack, weapon and other kit, cold, wet, hungry, thirsty, etc. To be clear, I'm not talking about being depressed, but of instead being so devoid of energy that simply using the stairs is more than I can manage at that time. If you've never been in that state, you simply can't appreciate what it's like. And the studies show that soldiers, deprived of sleep long enough, can't function even with adrenaline and high motivation. Drugs can postpone that point for a bit, but then comes the crash. Rommel could've taken Cairo, but the British were saved because his men fell asleep in their tanks with victory in sight and couldn't be roused! Soldiers have limits, and I'd like to see the game reflect that reality in how Fatigue affects the men. Believe we should be able to do better than someone's admonishment to "play Green troops" in order to get battlefield behavior more in line with what the combat accounts record.

Regards,

John Kettler

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31 minutes ago, John Kettler said:

 Rommel could've taken Cairo, but the British were saved because his men fell asleep in their tanks with victory in sight and couldn't be roused! 

Are you sure about that? Didn't his extended supply lines, or British AT guns and tanks play any part in halting him short of Cairo?

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