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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

      Instructions for Upgrading CMFI to Engine 4   04/09/2017

      Upgrading CMFI to Engine 4 requires prior product purchases be relicensed.  This is because we've updated the copy protection software.  This is a one time thing which also affected CMBN Mac and CMRT for both platforms, so some of you will find these instructions familiar.  The method of relicensing is flexible, but here's the optimal method: 1.  After installing using the Full or Update installers, launch the game.  You'll be prompted to license.  Enter you Engine 4 license key and exit. 2.  Use the "Activate New Products" short cut in your CMFI folder to launch the game with the license window.  Enter your Engine 3 license key.  If you bought the Upgrade 3 + 4 Bundle then you can skip this step. 3.  Use the "Activate New Products" short again and enter your Engine 2 license key *IF* you have one, otherwise skip this step.  Note that CMFI started it's life was Engine 2, therefore if you owned the game prior to Upgrade 3 coming out then your CMFI Base Game license key is your Engine 2 key. 4.  If you purchased Gustav Line as a separate product, use "Activate New Products" again and enter your Gustav license key.  If you bought Gustav as a Bundle, it should already be activated. If you should run into any issues, try to figure out what key is missing (the game should give you adequate feedback for that) and use "Activate New Products" link to allow you to enter whichever key is needed.  If you still have a problem, especially if you bought a Gustav Line Bundle (some keys definitely didn't transition correctly!), file with our Help Desk and include the license key you're having problems with: https://battlefront.mojohelpdesk.com If you can not find your license keys sent to you by email, no problem.  Go to your store account and check your Order History.  Keys and download links are always there for you unless you ordered a "hardgoods only" option.  In that case your license keys are on the back of the CD/DVD cases that came in the mail. Also good to know... if a download link in an email confirmation doesn't work, go to Order History and try from there.
    • 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
General Jack Ripper

CM:FI AAR SLIM versus Bletchley_Geek

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This thread will be a repository for videos showcasing a PBEM game I had against @BletchleyGeek which had finished about 4 months ago.
Do not expect quick or timely updates, this is a free-time only type of project, and is mostly me trying to shake off my lethargy after running three PBEM games concurrently, which left me feeling a bit burned out for a while.

Without further ado, stand by to receive your mission briefing!

 

 

Feel free to leave comments, or ask questions, but I would ask that ancillary discussion be kept to a minimum.

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Posted (edited)

Great to see this starting @General Jack Ripper:)

In this particular instance, the randomness of the QB created a quite interesting tactical situation for me to deal with. The QB generator assigned me to the 1st Canadian Division, which sort of explains why were attacking with an unsupported Infantry Battalion against a well entrenched German position in rather awful weather. Defended by a Battalion of light infantry, no less. Many letters would have to be written to Canada.

From Chris' commentary I see we both read the map similarly and pretty much we both identified which were the two sensible avenues of approach. Yet I had something going for me, and it was quite big: visibility was down to about 150 meters (until the firing starts).

My experience of night battles with CMx2 is that when the balloon goes up and every body starts firing, you really want to have fire superiority on the point of contact. Being the Canadian a Commonwealth army, this posed a number of very specific challenges. The CW sections are really anaemic when it comes to direct firepower, for which they make up with their little mortars and judicious use of their HMG platoons to bolster sections firepower. Pretty much any attack plan revolves around those guys being brought forward to take potshots at the enemy positions in a timely fashion, not too early and not too late, so follow up riflemen can dash into the breach. 

As Chris says, this wasn't going to be a fast moving battle. The weather conditions are bad and the terrain is bad, with lots of linear obstacles orthogonal to my approach. Having precisely 0 knowledge of Chris' positions required caution and also a plan that allowed for maximum flexibility. I didn't really want to be hauling ass laterally, with flanks up in the air, in the snow and in the dark, creating an opportunity for an enterprising German to infiltrate and ambush my platoons with those LMGs.

I leave it there - if I have time I will be posting the odd screenshot from my POV to contrast with Chris' video exposition.

 

 

Edited by BletchleyGeek

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10 hours ago, BletchleyGeek said:

visibility was down to about 150 meters (until the firing starts).

if I have time I will be posting the odd screenshot from my POV to contrast with Chris' video exposition.  

I'm still learning with night battles in the WWII titles (or even a modern mission where NVDs are not present).  I think it is generally correct to say that at night LOF is greater than LOS.  And then when a unit does fire it is probably spotted because of muzzle flash etc.  So Target Arcs can play an important role. 

I hope you have the time to post screenshots.  It's always interesting to see the other POV. 

@General Jack Ripper  what skill level are you guys playing this at?  I watched the video but the one detail I didn't hear (maybe I missed it) was the skill level. 

 

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23 hours ago, Bil Hardenberger said:

Awesome!  Can't have too many AARs.

I think you will find this one interesting, especially the way it ends.
No spoilers though... ;)

 

12 hours ago, BletchleyGeek said:

Great to see this starting @General Jack Ripper:)

My experience of night battles with CMx2 is that when the balloon goes up and every body starts firing, you really want to have fire superiority on the point of contact.

I leave it there - if I have time I will be posting the odd screenshot from my POV to contrast with Chris' video exposition.

Thanks for coming.

That is one small tidbit I have had to teach myself, time after time involving night battles, the absolute necessity of outgunning your opponent in very confined spaces the moment contact is first made.

By all means, post whatever you like, I would simply ask to refrain from excessive spoilers. I kept all the turn files from both sides, and will use video from both sides in my presentation (showing the actions I took, then with an aside to show the effects of said action, whether effective or not). You can feel free to DM me any notes you might have that you would like to see referenced in each video section, or if capable, I am more than happy to include any recorded commentary you might wish to insert.

 

2 hours ago, MOS:96B2P said:

I'm still learning with night battles in the WWII titles (or even a modern mission where NVDs are not present).  I think it is generally correct to say that at night LOF is greater than LOS.  And then when a unit does fire it is probably spotted because of muzzle flash etc.  So Target Arcs can play an important role. 

@General Jack Ripper  what skill level are you guys playing this at?  I watched the video but the one detail I didn't hear (maybe I missed it) was the skill level. 

 

^ I would say that is perfectly sound advice. We are playing on Elite, simply because I find the relative friendly spotting on Iron to be annoying, despite the fact it can be useful as a tool to visualize the C2 links.

 

I'm hoping to release a video segment once a week, Real Lifetm work permitting, as well as a few other obligations currently running.

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3 hours ago, General Jack Ripper said:

By all means, post whatever you like, I would simply ask to refrain from excessive spoilers. I kept all the turn files from both sides, and will use video from both sides in my presentation (showing the actions I took, then with an aside to show the effects of said action, whether effective or not). You can feel free to DM me any notes you might have that you would like to see referenced in each video section, or if capable, I am more than happy to include any recorded commentary you might wish to insert.

No worries, I follow your lead here. Screenshots I had in mind to illustrate the plans, and how those evolved, as I thought that bit cannot be captured so well with videos :)

 

I need to remember to drop by your discord server!

 

 

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14 hours ago, BletchleyGeek said:

No worries, I follow your lead here. Screenshots I had in mind to illustrate the plans, and how those evolved, as I thought that bit cannot be captured so well with videos :)

I need to remember to drop by your discord server!

Miguel, I encourage you to add some commentary of your side when you can.. to be honest, finding the time to devote to watching these AAR videos is tough for me.  It's much easier for me to read a written account with screenshots.

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On ‎4‎/‎9‎/‎2018 at 8:30 AM, Bil Hardenberger said:

to be honest, finding the time to devote to watching these AAR videos is tough for me.  It's much easier for me to read a written account with screenshots.

That's why I'm going with weekly updates, to keep the pace down.

The next part is cut and dried at 17 minutes, and will be posted on Saturday.

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On ‎4‎/‎8‎/‎2018 at 5:35 PM, BletchleyGeek said:

No worries, I follow your lead here. Screenshots I had in mind to illustrate the plans, and how those evolved, as I thought that bit cannot be captured so well with videos :)

You can write and post whatever you'd like, I just don't want to spoil things early, that's all. You'll see what I mean in the next video, I leave you a hook at the end to write off of.

 

On ‎4‎/‎8‎/‎2018 at 5:35 PM, BletchleyGeek said:

I need to remember to drop by your discord server!

It would make coordination a bit easier, or we can open a DM here on the forum to collaborate.

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Posted (edited)

The next video explores my attempt to gain some intelligence about enemy intentions.

After completing my METT-TC analysis, and deploying my troops, I seek to gain the one piece of the puzzle I do not have. To that end, I send my scouts out, "NormalDude Style". In proper fashion, they get brutally murdered, due to a mistake I made planning my movement.

EDIT: While my scouts may have come to grief, it did teach me one very important lesson, very early in the battle, and that is the exact amount of visibility I would be dealing with due to the prevailing weather conditions. So in that regard, their deaths were invaluable.

Edited by General Jack Ripper

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Nice update JR, appreciate the work.

Living up to your namesake with the scouts/patrol. Those poor guys must have been taken from the nearby penal battalion.

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Posted (edited)

Nice video as always, @General Jack Ripper :)

 

I hadn't looked through your files yet, so the video was also quite enlightening to me.

 

I was actually expecting you to have deployed significant forces fighting in "guerrilla" well ahead of your force. So I was moving always in column of platoons, and Sections moving forward leapfrogging, with 1 Section always on overwatch while another advanced forward, on a strict 30-40 meters frontage. Hence it took me a while to reach your HKL, when you move in formation like that, you're trading off security for speed.  My calculation was that you could easily have at least 1 platoon or platoon equivalent using specialist teams, waiting for me. That's what I would have done in these circumstances.

 

The result of that engagement was that I adjusted my formations, so that the mortar and the command team were always part of the overwatch component. I was a bit miffed to see that at 10 meters range a whole Section wasn't able to brush off your guys without losses,  as  I had got a sound contact on your scout team the previous minute. In my next post I will go over the OOB of my force, but for now it will suffice I bought from the QB the "default" package. So you were facing the Canadian army as modelled by Battlefront :)

 

It did too reinforce my assessment that a cautious approach was for the best, and strengthened my resolve to micromanage my pixeltruppen all the way until I made contact. 

Edited by BletchleyGeek

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Here's the video for the very few seconds before the end of the turn... the obvious command for that section was to set it to fire on that contact marker :)

 

 

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Posted (edited)

In this other short video it can be seen what was the formation I was using (about 80 meters deep and 30 meters wide) for each platoon.

 

The meeting engagement with that scout team made obvious to me that the spacing between the echelons of the formation needed to be closer. Also, the command and the mortar element should have been moved a bit forward to be able to support the overwatch squad properly. Another change I made to my platoon formations was to make them wider - as you can see I didn't have anybody going through that little forest on the right. I wasn't expected him to be there just yet, but certainly that meeting engagement was a reminder that nobody needed to have flanks exposed like that.

 

As @General Jack Ripper notes, spotting cycles are between 7 to 9 seconds and you really want to maximise the number of spotting checks. As I am on the attack and moving in force, my plan to increase awareness was to advance at "normal" speed with the Move command. In CMx2 I have found it is the best trade off between awareness and speed, at least for my style of armchair command.  I also think it is better to work with "tangible" timers like that of another element of the same unit getting into position rather than going purely by the numbers.

 

 

Edited by BletchleyGeek
Improved Text and Link to Bil's Blog

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8 hours ago, BletchleyGeek said:

Here's the video for the very few seconds before the end of the turn... the obvious command for that section was to set it to fire on that contact marker :)

Okay, I missed that in my review because the camera was too close to spot the contact marker behind the tree.

8 hours ago, BletchleyGeek said:

I was actually expecting you to have deployed significant forces fighting in "guerrilla" well ahead of your force.

I had intended to do that, but previous experience at night fighting against @lucas showed me how deadly it was to engage the enemy without having superior firepower.
I was determined to hold my own forces back until I could gain some advantage, or at least have a concrete idea of where you were.

As you said previously, superior firepower at point of contact is key, because once the shooting starts, all nearby teams will join in.
So having a few teams scattered in front of my force would have simply got them killed to no real advantage aside from intel, but I think my METT-TC analysis was good enough to operate without a complete intelligence picture.

Of course, we shall see how right or wrong that idea was in the next video on Saturday, when we have contact along the MLR.

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6 hours ago, General Jack Ripper said:

I had intended to do that, but previous experience at night fighting against @lucas showed me how deadly it was to engage the enemy without having superior firepower.
I was determined to hold my own forces back until I could gain some advantage, or at least have a concrete idea of where you were.

As you said previously, superior firepower at point of contact is key, because once the shooting starts, all nearby teams will join in.

In this particular example I think the result of this engagement could have been quite different if you had got a contact marker first. Given the superior quality of your guys, I think you could have gotten away with setting a short pause, showering the marker with your SMGs and then bug out with a fast command. 

Note as well that I was moving in columns to avoid getting pinned down on a fight not of my choosing. As you could see it would have taken me easily 2 to 3 minutes to reinforce that section. 

Fighting guerrilla is risky, as indeed you can have your forces picked up in detail if they get pinned down. It is hard to get timing right, but when you pull it through you really get that Hannibal Smith moment.

 

 

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3 minutes ago, IICptMillerII said:

Here's a cinematic, entertaining video of someone who knows how to scout and attack properly

Care to ellaborate why is this video relevant to the discussion? 

Thanks.

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Posted (edited)
22 minutes ago, BletchleyGeek said:

Care to ellaborate why is this video relevant to the discussion? 

Thanks.

@IICptMillerII is implying that the people in this thread don’t know how to scout or attack properly. Hence why he specifically mentions @Rinaldi‘s video as an example of someone who does know how to both scout and attack properly. It’s a very serious assertion, I’d be curious as to what @General Jack Ripper thinks of this, given he’s the one the video seems to be directed at.  

 

Edited by sid_burn

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47 minutes ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

It's a shame @General Jack Ripper has deleted the video of his CM:SF match against @IICptMillerII;)

You're in luck! I've been trying to get into cinematic AAR video making. I've been playing around with recording and editing recently. I have the files to Halt Hammerzeit that I'm planning on uploading. Unfortunately all the save files are on my desktop, which is currently under repair, but I'm hoping to have it back in action soon and start recording. Stand by!

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