Jump to content
DerKommissar

Concept: Forum Operational Campaign

Recommended Posts

The idea is to make a turn-based (WEGO) operational layer campaign here on the forums (or potentially a different platform like roll20). It will be on a square or hex-grid graph of a map -- depending on game and theatre. You will be able to make your own units (companies or platoons) and move them around once per turn. Whenever two units (or more) on the map bump into eachother, the GM will post parameters for a Quick Battle you can put into your game and play out. The player (s) then would report the results of their Quick Battle and the operational map would be updated accordingly. A turn can be a week, or bi-weekly, to allow everyone to declare their move, play their Quick battle and report their results on the forum.

pJAK3zC.jpg

I had this crazy idea while messing around with my roll20 RPG campaign. Instead of making a character sheet, one could make a company/platoon sheet. Recently I saw a lot of people wanting an Operational Layer and someone even mentioned a system that they came up for themselves. It's all still very much in concept phase. At first, I was thinking the campaign should be cooperative and all enemies be managed by GM and be played by AI in-game. Though, I'm sure a lot of people would like to play OPFOR and provide an opponent for those who do not enjoy sparring with AI.

I'm curious what you guys think! Interested? Not interested? Comments? Concerns? Ideas of your own?

Edited by DerKommissar

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

How would units be abstracted on the map?

They could have bigger radius of movement depending on how well they are motorized. Different units could also have different sight radius that would allow them to see and identify enemies. Units could also have the capability to fortify, resulting in more points for trenches, mines, etc. I was thinking that the most basic unit on the operation layer should be the platoon. 4 platoons can stack into a company, but companies cannot stack into battalions.

How would units persist between the game and the operational layer?

Some abstraction would be necessary. There's two ways I thought of doing this:

a. Each unit has a TO&E. When a squad (or a single vehicle) is destroyed, it gets stricken from the TO&E. It would require the player to keep track of WHAT got destroyed. Potentially claiming kills, as well -- as enemy units need to take losses too.

b. A points-based system where you only need the final result screenshot. Just the raw numbers of losses (vehicles may weigh more than infantry) would translate to the loss of points for a units deployment. This would allow a player to reorganize their troops for each battle.

How will objectives be handled?

Again, 2 ways of doing this:

a. Victory point control. Holding a single objective for 1 turn will add 1 to the victory tally. Once a threshold of points has been reached, you win -- or lose.

b. Hold all objectives to win. Game is just about taking each objective.

The main debate in this whole concept is the level of complexity/simplicity such a system should have. Interested in what you think about all this.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

+1 for the idea. 

I recently posted this link in another thread for RobO's Quick Campaign Generator (ROQC) http://cmx1mods.greenasjade.net/mods?author_id=20&game_type=2 which was used in the CMx1 series of games for "quick campaign generation".  It would be great if some Excel wiz could figure out how to make some of this work for CMx2.  Loved this with CMx1.  Some stuff might be useful though for this endeavour not sure, maybe record keeping or something??

Edited by Blazing 88's

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Reminds me quite much to Kohlenklau’s approach. He used, what, Panzer General?, can’t remember right now, as operational overlay. He realized quite a couple of multi-player campaigns a few years ago.

Good concept. Unfortunately, I only re-played one. But it was still time well spent.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
3 hours ago, Blazing 88's said:

I recently posted this link in another thread for RobO's Quick Campaign Generator (ROQC) http://cmx1mods.greenasjade.net/mods?author_id=20&game_type=2 which was used in the CMx1 series of games for "quick campaign generation".  It would be great if some Excel wiz could figure out how to make some of this work for CMx2. 

I've previously used Google Docs for keeping track of stats in RPG campaigns. A good idea! An automated sheet could cut down a lot of work, counting casualties/points etc. Tried to DL the campaigns to take a look, said I need an account. 

Googled the Generator -- looks cool. Lots of random elements like reinforcement experience and such...

3 hours ago, StieliAlpha said:

Reminds me quite much to Kohlenklau’s approach. He used, what, Panzer General?, can’t remember right now, as operational overlay. He realized quite a couple of multi-player campaigns a few years ago.

I should check out Mr Kohlenklau's work. I'm guessing he used the editor to move the units around? I will most definitely carry over a few Panzer General features.

Really appreciate reference material of how people did it in the past. I'm trying to brainstorm how movement would work. You wouldn't want it to take 5 weeks to get into a kerfuffle and don't want 20 companies facing off 50 companies. Should terrain affect movement, ie. roads, swamps?

Each hex would have a Terrain Type. That type would affect movement, as well as define Quick Battle map type.

Edited by DerKommissar

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For what it's worth, there is a CMBB version as well. 

If you can't get the files or you don't want to sign up,  I could dropbox them for you?  Up to you.

Edited by Blazing 88's

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting idea.

On ‎11‎/‎12‎/‎2018 at 6:39 PM, DerKommissar said:

It will be on a square or hex-grid graph of a map -- depending on game and theatre. You will be able to make your own units (companies or platoons) and move them around once per turn. Whenever two units (or more) on the map bump into eachother, the GM will post parameters for a Quick Battle you can put into your game and play out.

How would one determine the game maps to be used? Would you always use the same game map size given that the operational maps hexes are of fixed size? Basically players need to be able to figure out some way to easily deduce from the operational map what the terrain the hexes are going to use should they result in battle. I guess if you instead made your own hex map (rather than laying hex grid over historical map as above) then each style (could be just a colour does not need a graphic) of hex could just represent each option under the games Environment drop down list.

hexBasedCampaignDesign_part2_1.png

 

5 hours ago, DerKommissar said:

They could have bigger radius of movement depending on how well they are motorized. Different units could also have different sight radius that would allow them to see and identify enemies. Units could also have the capability to fortify, resulting in more points for trenches, mines, etc. I was thinking that the most basic unit on the operation layer should be the platoon. 4 platoons can stack into a company, but companies cannot stack into battalions.

Any benefits to using engineer/pioneer units? Maybe when an engineer/pioneer Platoon exists in the stack fortifying could provide mines, bunkers, hedgehogs etc? And provide just foxholes, sandbags, trenches etc when no engineer/pioneer Platoon exists in the stack that is fortifying?

I guess when an mortar platoon exists in the stack in combat they get provided as on map assets. But when they are instead one or two hexes away from the stack in combat could they get provided into the battle as off map assets? How could assets that are only off map be used in the operational layer, how could they get destroyed and etc.

Could airborne units get an special action for airborne movement? Like spend two turns in preparation (no fortifying or movement) and then be able to move a large number of hexes on the next turn? I gather for that though you would need to keep track of the frontline, and have that action only usable from within friendly lines, would be silly for an airborne unit to do a reverse airborne landing in the WW2 games.

On ‎11‎/‎12‎/‎2018 at 6:39 PM, DerKommissar said:

Whenever two units (or more) on the map bump into eachother, the GM will post parameters for a Quick Battle you can put into your game and play out.

5 hours ago, DerKommissar said:

I was thinking that the most basic unit on the operation layer should be the platoon. 4 platoons can stack into a company, but companies cannot stack into battalions. 

57 minutes ago, DerKommissar said:

You wouldn't want it to take 5 weeks to get into a kerfuffle and don't want 20 companies facing off 50 companies.

 

Combat Mission cannot do cooperative games. So I gather that different players Platoons cannot stack onto the same hex with each other. And also that attacking and defending is only done from a single hex into another single hex. Rather than players being able to stack on the same hex and battles being able to be made between multiple hexes as that would I think result in units from two players or more being involved in a battle but with only one player being able to control them. Single hexes to single hexes would mean battles can only be max company versus company also. But also then I query how you can support other players?

Edited by Oliver_88

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, DerKommissar said:

I should check out Mr Kohlenklau's work. I'm guessing he used the editor to move the units around? I will most definitely carry over a few Panzer General features.

Really appreciate reference material of how people did it in the past.

Kohlenklau used an existing operational level computer game as overlay for CM. The concept in veeeery broad terms:

- set up two teams of “generals” and “field commanders”, plus an umpire (aka Kohlenklau)

- the generals played the operational level game

- Kohlenklau would convert the battles of this game into CM QB’s, trying to capture the landscape on quickly drawn, pretty rough maps and trying to convert the operational level game units into  CM forces

- field commanders played the CM battles

- Kohlenklau carried over the results

- the generals played the next operational level turn

- Life, Die, Repeat (sorry, I had to include this movie title)

For practical reasons the operational level Campaigns were quite short, say 6 turns. And he limited the number of CM battles per turn.

The scale of those battles could vary wildly.  In my replay (we played just the CM battles and Kohl narrated the “in between’s”), we had a strange little night battle (with very little actual action. In the end, I won because I retreated off map fast enough, avoiding battle as well as I could) and a huge full scale attack on a town.

Re „narrating“: In his original Campaigns, he did a very good job to narrate the operational proceedings so, that field commander, too, understood what was going on.

And yes, as mentioned elsewhere in this thread: It could happen, that CM battles were “unplayable” in CM terms. I would consider that quite normal. I once played in a similar “Age of Sails” Multiplayer campaign. There we had the same phenomena: Many actions were not much fun for one side. That’s somehow the name of the game: “Don’t look for knightly feuds, but crush the opponent quick and dirty.”

Edited by StieliAlpha

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
37 minutes ago, Oliver_88 said:

 But also then I query how you can support other players?

See my previous post. For that you would need an umpire to set up the CM battles.

BTW, I do not know if has been mentioned here already, but there was an attempt to build an operational level CMx1 game a looooong time ago. Unfortunately it was abandoned after a while. But one should find it in this Forum and it may be a source of inspiration.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, DerKommissar said:

Really appreciate reference material of how people did it in the past. I'm trying to brainstorm how movement would work.

Eh, sorry, I forgot to mention: You do not need to re-invent the wheel. All of your concerns have been tackled in countless board games already. I.e., the mechanics are there. The challenge is, to convert them into computer code.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/12/2018 at 12:39 PM, DerKommissar said:

I'm curious what you guys think! Interested? Not interested? Comments? Concerns? Ideas of your own?

There have been many operational level games played with different ideas and mechanics used.  Some are talked about in various forum threads here and at the Few Good Men (FGM).  Rico is currently running one at the FGM now.  The link is below.  At the beginning of the thread he explains how he set it up.  Shows his operational map etc.  Thought you might find it interesting.   

http://www.thefewgoodmen.com/thefgmforum/threads/the-island-war-the-rico-reich-vs-the-republic-of-gunn.26848/

Edited by MOS:96B2P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

There are a ton of ways to do this. One option would be to GM this as an Engle Matrix game, with the GM creating battles to suit the situation (you could use existing maps, so this creation process doesn't need to be that long. You'd want to standardise on a points system for the battles, but that's fairly straightforward to do.)

Briefly. Matrix games are gm-run things, where each turn the players submit Arguments, and reasons why these will succeed. 

This is a quick example of a matrix-only game, but you can see how it can be used to generate meaningful battles:
https://balagan.info/missing-general-an-engle-matrix-game-battle-report


A practical (small) CM example off the top of my head:

Situation, turn 3 (this is mostly narrative fluff, but since that's what Matrix games are all about, that's important).
German player lost the previous battle and needs to regroup and re-arm. Their AT ammunition is getting significantly low, and their supply lines are in jeopardy. The town of Fullofpixeltruppen is on a key supply route. There is a simple sketch map of the surrounding area that both players have access to, and both players will have clearly defined campaign goals, that aren't important for this example. Both players will have a TO&E at the start, which is not tracked explicitly, but in terms of vague percentage losses, or removed entirely.
 

(US player)
Change to matrix:I send 2nd platoon to conduct a probing attack at night into the village of Fullofpixeltruppen
Specific benefit desired: We will learn of the enemy strengths and weaknesses, and take out key assets (AT guns) in preparation for the main assault.
Support from matrix: 2nd platoon is well-rested. The enemy are fleeing in disarray following the last battle. The initiative is ours.

(German player)
Change to matrix: My focus will be to get the supplies through safely. I'll bring up 2nd company to halt the retreat in a safe position and send out a force to take hill 217 with artillery.
Specific benefit desired: My forces can resupply, and set up artillery fire and TRPs onto key terrain over the surrounding area - the village, the river crossing and the crest of hill 312.
Support from matrix: My artillery is untouched, my men are well trained and the supplies are in really fast trucks.

(submitted in secret)

The GM takes these arguments and considers them. It's important that the arguments should not be mutually exclusive. The US player has no forces on hill 217, and hasn't mentioned it, so it's reasonable to rule that this move from the Germans will succeed. The rest of the German argument is pretty weak, and more or less reads as "I stop running away when I can".

Since the US player is not explicitly pursuing the Germans, it's reasonable to suggest that the fleeing forces will drip out, but won't take much of a part in this battle. This means that the generated scenario here will be:

Probing attack. Night mission, weather will be randomised with a die roll, but weighted towards being fine.

US forces:

- Rifle platoon, with priority of fires from the company mortars (no other action is happening here, and they're available)

German forces:

- Stragglers and malcontents, not quite a platoon in size.
- AT Gun platoon
- Artillery with a TRP

All German forces will be low on ammunition and motivation. German infantry stragglers will also have some percentage losses.


The mission objectives will be Spot and Destroy objectives for the US, centred around the AT guns. There will also be some points for killing Germans. Priority are the guns and minimising losses.
German victory will be for destroying US forces, and occupying the town.

Assuming standardising to 1000 points, then something like:

German:
Destroy (all) 800
Occupy 200

US 
Spot (AT Guns) 200
Destroy (AT Guns)  400
Destroy (Remaining Germans) 400


In practice, the GM would choose a sensible looking map, and set up the objectives and choose units to match the above. Stick them in the setup zones, which will be determined by the map - in this case, the German setup zones will be a lot more restrictive.

GM then sends the scenario file and briefings to each party. It's probably useful if both players share their PBEM password with the GM, and all three players share a dropbox folder, so that everything is GM-accessible if needs be (but particularly the outcome).

***

What's worth defining before you start though is:

What are you trying to achieve?

Campaigns have multiple purposes - they can provide context for battles, produce a narrative, they can force you to make longer term decisions about preserving forces, etc.

Campaigns can be fully fledged wargames all by themselves, but they can also be pre-set tree campaigns, or fluffy narrative campaigns just as easily. What I really like about the Matrix game concept is that it's a powerful tool for applying some structure to an otherwise arbitrary narrative.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
19 hours ago, Blazing 88's said:

If you can't get the files or you don't want to sign up,  I could dropbox them for you?  Up to you.

I've got no problem signing up, thanks for the offer though! I'll check it out soon.

18 hours ago, Oliver_88 said:

Would you always use the same game map size given that the operational maps hexes are of fixed size? Basically players need to be able to figure out some way to easily deduce from the operational map what the terrain the hexes are going to use should they result in battle. I guess if you instead made your own hex map (rather than laying hex grid over historical map as above) then each style (could be just a colour does not need a graphic) of hex could just represent each option under the games Environment drop down list.

Yeah, that's probably the way I'll do it. Have a legend and set each hex with a specific QB environment type, which would affect operational movement too. Still need to decide how big each hex is.

18 hours ago, Oliver_88 said:

Any benefits to using engineer/pioneer units?

I guess when an mortar platoon exists in the stack in combat they get provided as on map assets. But when they are instead one or two hexes away from the stack in combat could they get provided into the battle as off map assets?

Could airborne units get an special action for airborne movement? I gather for that though you would need to keep track of the frontline, and have that action only usable from within friendly lines, would be silly for an airborne unit to do a reverse airborne landing in the WW2 games.

Combat Mission cannot do cooperative games. So I gather that different players Platoons cannot stack onto the same hex with each other. And also that attacking and defending is only done from a single hex into another single hex. Rather than players being able to stack on the same hex and battles being able to be made between multiple hexes as that would I think result in units from two players or more being involved in a battle but with only one player being able to control them. Single hexes to single hexes would mean battles can only be max company versus company also. But also then I query how you can support other players?

I'm thinking maybe engineers would be able to reduce an enemy hex's fortification points, and increase friendly hex's fortification points (or reduce fortification time). It would be cool to introduce bridges and mines on the operational layer -- that would certainly make them very useful.

The mortar idea is fantastic, that is probably the way to go.

The airborne would probably get the option to deploy on any hex on the map, maybe toss in a random element for being thrown off-course (more complexity than needed, potentially). Once they've been deployed, they're normal infantry. Also, if I decide to include AAA or interceptors, they could possibly protect hexes from landing. Frontline is an interesting idea, and I think needed for a WW2 game especially.

Players would be playing commanders. So, it is very likely that platoons not under their command cannot be in the same hex. Also, I was thinking that players can lend adjacent assets to the senior player that is in the battle. Or it may be simpler to just sat 1 player: 1 hex and a battle can only happen between two hexes (which would probably allow companies to stack). Or maybe come up with a consistent way of divvying up enemy forces, so that two parallel battles can happen against two halves of the enemy force on the hex, or surrounding hexes. This is one of those million dollar problems.

18 hours ago, StieliAlpha said:

Kohlenklau used an existing operational level computer game as overlay for CM. The concept in veeeery broad terms:

- set up two teams of “generals” and “field commanders”, plus an umpire (aka Kohlenklau)

- the generals played the operational level game

- Kohlenklau would convert the battles of this game into CM QB’s, trying to capture the landscape on quickly drawn, pretty rough maps and trying to convert the operational level game units into  CM forces

- field commanders played the CM battles

- Kohlenklau carried over the results

- the generals played the next operational level turn

- Life, Die, Repeat (sorry, I had to include this movie title)

For practical reasons the operational level Campaigns were quite short, say 6 turns. And he limited the number of CM battles per turn.

Yeah, I like the idea of having higher ranking players in charge of operational layer. I did want a fog of war effect, where BLUFOR has to identify OPFOR units. Mystery of which would be ruined if BLUFOR and OPFOR could sneak a peak on eachother's positions. I would welcome a co-GM that would command OPFOR. There's also the possibility of OPFOR field commanders that would be PM'd their positions. I'm trying to make a more narrative-focused RP campaign, rather than a rigid computer game. Limiting battles per turn may be a good idea, and I'll most likely have a turn limit for the campaign.

17 hours ago, MOS:96B2P said:

There have been many operational level games played with different ideas and mechanics used.  Some are talked about in various forum threads here and at the Few Good Men (FGM).  Rico is currently running one at the FGM now.  The link is below.  At the beginning of the thread he explains how he set it up.  Shows his operational map etc.  Thought you might find it interesting.   

http://www.thefewgoodmen.com/thefgmforum/threads/the-island-war-the-rico-reich-vs-the-republic-of-gunn.26848/

Yes, I was very impressed by Mr Rico's way of doing the campaign. I might need to nick more than a few ideas. I like how he uses supports -- even ships! That's pretty cool. I'm curious what he used to make such a pretty map. The way he handles strength is kind of cool, too. The issue of persistence being one of the big challenges.

4 hours ago, domfluff said:

Briefly. Matrix games are gm-run things, where each turn the players submit Arguments, and reasons why these will succeed. 

This is a quick example of a matrix-only game, but you can see how it can be used to generate meaningful battles:
https://balagan.info/missing-general-an-engle-matrix-game-battle-report

What's worth defining before you start though is:

What are you trying to achieve?

Campaigns have multiple purposes - they can provide context for battles, produce a narrative, they can force you to make longer term decisions about preserving forces, etc.

Campaigns can be fully fledged wargames all by themselves, but they can also be pre-set tree campaigns, or fluffy narrative campaigns just as easily. What I really like about the Matrix game concept is that it's a powerful tool for applying some structure to an otherwise arbitrary narrative.

Engle Matrix certainly has advantages. It requires less rules, which means its easier for players to get into, and yet you can do almost anything. A disadvantage is that it'd be pretty hard to balance difficulty and at the same time keep consistent to all players. I do like the command format in the report, I may have something similar for declaring orders. Day and night cycles and time tracking! Good too!

What am I trying to achieve? A co-op WEGO battalion (possibly even regiment) level campaign that functions like Graviteam's operational layer, following a dynamic narrative and easily accessible to players. I'm also gonna leave the starting BLUFOR force completely up to players.

Lots of great ideas, folks. Got a lot of examples to look over. I've still have yet to decide which CM2 game to set it in (I love them all). Which one would you prefer? Modern or WW2?

Edited by DerKommissar

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

As I recall Kohlenklau used John Tillers Panzer Campaigns as the Master Maps that were then reduced to Tactical Engagements when opposing groups met.

Here is link to the web Page. The last three games will be the ones that will interest you. 

http://www.johntillersoftware.com/WesternFrontPanzerCampaigns.html

Since then a new class has been released called Panzer Battles. perhaps that would be a better model as it is at a reduced scale.

http://www.johntillersoftware.com/PanzerBattles.html

Demos for both from this page: http://www.johntillersoftware.com/Demos.php

A link to 

 

Edited by z1812

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/14/2018 at 7:27 PM, z1812 said:

As I recall Kohlenklau used John Tillers Panzer Campaigns as the Master Maps that were then reduced to Tactical Engagements when opposing groups met.

Here is link to the web Page. The last three games will be the ones that will interest you. 

http://www.johntillersoftware.com/WesternFrontPanzerCampaigns.html

Since then a new class has been released called Panzer Battles. perhaps that would be a better model as it is at a reduced scale.

http://www.johntillersoftware.com/PanzerBattles.html

Wow, I never even heard of these games. They look pretty fun. My main issue with using another computer game is that a computer game usually handles a lot of the rule-checking for the user. Which is great for me, but other players that do not have this game (or my instance in this game) will still need the rules and checking thereof.

This being said, all these games are great inspirations for coming up with rules. Though, computer rule-checking does often make mechanics seem more simple than they are. Either way, I do appreciate all the suggestions and I have plenty of material to draw from.

Right now, I am thinking of which era/conflict to set this campaign in. Any suggestions? I was thinking of setting it in Shock Force -- but I may have to wait for the full remake to come out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think Shock Force is the best idea. You could always play around with the factions (BLU v BLU). It's definitely going to be the most popular game. 

You could always start it on SF1 and then expand to the massive amount of maps CMx2 4.0 offers afterward. :)

Edited by Artkin

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/17/2018 at 11:58 AM, Artkin said:

You could always start it on SF1 and then expand to the massive amount of maps CMx2 4.0 offers afterward. :)

Certainly can! Alt-history invasion of Syria by NATO would certainly be an interesting narrative. 

Asymmetrical operations could also be fun, could even have a "Hearts & Minds" mechanic. 

On 11/18/2018 at 3:59 AM, Pike said:

I'm in. What to do? :)

Appreciate the enthusiasm! This is an early concept thread -- just doing some R&D at the moment. I'll post a full proposal in the near future, and all will be made clear.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/16/2018 at 3:43 PM, DerKommissar said:

Wow, I never even heard of these games. They look pretty fun. My main issue with using another computer game is that a computer game usually handles a lot of the rule-checking for the user. Which is great for me, but other players that do not have this game (or my instance in this game) will still need the rules and checking thereof.

This being said, all these games are great inspirations for coming up with rules. Though, computer rule-checking does often make mechanics seem more simple than they are. Either way, I do appreciate all the suggestions and I have plenty of material to draw from.

Right now, I am thinking of which era/conflict to set this campaign in. Any suggestions? I was thinking of setting it in Shock Force -- but I may have to wait for the full remake to come out.

Yep, the John Tiller Games as base for Kohl‘s work are exactly what I mentioned in earlier posts. Check out what Kohl did. He had a very well working, GM‘ed system.

Don‘t underestimate the JT Games. They are quite serious tactical simulations, just with a different scale. And their looks are not quite up to date.

Sorry for my slow thinking, seems I am playing too much Panzer Corps at the moment.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/16/2018 at 3:43 PM, DerKommissar said:

Wow, I never even heard of these games. They look pretty fun. My main issue with using another computer game is that a computer game usually handles a lot of the rule-checking for the user...

Refer to an earlier post of mine:

“Generals“ would handle the JT games. „Field Commanders“ only need to know CM.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
21 hours ago, StieliAlpha said:

“Generals“ would handle the JT games. „Field Commanders“ only need to know CM.

I'd like the Field Commanders to be able to move their forces, and manage TO&Es. By extension, I would like Generals to be able to play CM battles too! Generals could have the benefit of moving around supports. Which I've decided will work as stackable units. I really liked the suggestion that mortars or SPGs can be off-map if they're not on the battle hex, and on-map if they are.

I will be going with a Panzer Corps-type system, maybe even use it for the graphics (too bad it doesn't have modern units). So one hex can only engage one hex. Yet, adjacent hexes can provide support. Off-map artillery, CAS, and even lending troops from their TO&E to another field commander's CM command(would be really cool if CM had "delayed reinforcements" feature).

I think most players are familiar with how Panzer General-like games work and it'll be pretty intuitive. Main difference is that, instead of a Panzer Corps player going through all their units and resolving their turns -- here, the field commanders will declare their intended actions at their convenience. Once everyone has declared, or time limit has passed, I will post the battles and the players get to resolve them in CM. 

Players will then post their AAR, and I'll be really happy if players write out stories and such. There is still the question of persistence. Unit strength will be abstracted as a percentage based on total casualties divided by original strength. Then the players' QB purchase points will be only that percentage of strength. Another way to do it is just to let players write down which units were destroyed during battle -- then we'd need to keep track of every squad/vehicle/etc.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@DerKommissar there is a way to save a core force and import it into existing scenarios and quick battles.  I have used it before and it is kind of a cool way to create your own campaign by using stock scenarios or quick battles.  I'm not sure how it would work in a PBEM environment.  A "Game Master, judge type" would probably have to make the initial core unit imports before every battle then send it to a player who would then initiate a traditional PBEM?  I've not given the mechanics of how this would work for your purposes a lot of thought.  After the original core units are created a spread sheet or word document could track the casualties and the appropriate modification to the core force could be made before the next battle? 

Below are my notes on how I use it.  You may be able to modify the below to fit your idea.  Good luck:)

Core unit notes:    

To save a favorite group option when building TOE save it as a core unit file, like you would make for a campaign, but you can load it onto any map you have in the editor.

To save a favorite group option when building TOE open the QB map or scenario in the scenario editor, drop in your force from the core file (import feature). (If QB add the force you want to fight against and drop it into the OpFor setup zone.)  Set up your force how you want. Then save the file in your scenarios folder (I'd recommend renaming it too, to avoid accidents).  When you start the new scenario the AI should set up your opponents randomly and take over from there.  I create a Core Units Files sub-folder in all my CM Game Files folders.

To create a core unit:

1) Open up the scenario editor.

2) Select desired units.

3) Save in Scenarios

4) Name the scenario file. Example - Core US 1944 Armored Inf. Company.

To import core units into a scenario:

1) Open up the scenario in the scenario editor.

2) Go to units and delete the units you are replacing with your core force.

3) Click on Import Campaign Units.

4) The scenarios file will open.

5) Select the desired core force.

6) Click Deploy Units and place the core force in the setup zone.

7) Save with a different name to preserve the original scenario.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
30 minutes ago, DerKommissar said:

I'd like the Field Commanders to be able to move their forces, and manage TO&Es. By extension, I would like Generals to be able to play CM battles too! Generals could have the benefit of moving around supports. Which I've decided will work as stackable units. I really liked the suggestion that mortars or SPGs can be off-map if they're not on the battle hex, and on-map if they are.

I will be going with a Panzer Corps-type system, maybe even use it for the graphics (too bad it doesn't have modern units). So one hex can only engage one hex. Yet, adjacent hexes can provide support. Off-map artillery, CAS, and even lending troops from their TO&E to another field commander's CM command(would be really cool if CM had "delayed reinforcements" feature).

I think most players are familiar with how Panzer General-like games work and it'll be pretty intuitive. Main difference is that, instead of a Panzer Corps player going through all their units and resolving their turns -- here, the field commanders will declare their intended actions at their convenience. Once everyone has declared, or time limit has passed, I will post the battles and the players get to resolve them in CM. 

Players will then post their AAR, and I'll be really happy if players write out stories and such. There is still the question of persistence. Unit strength will be abstracted as a percentage based on total casualties divided by original strength. Then the players' QB purchase points will be only that percentage of strength. Another way to do it is just to let players write down which units were destroyed during battle -- then we'd need to keep track of every squad/vehicle/etc.

I think, I mentioned that before: Conceptually, you are trying to reinvent the wheel. I really recommend to have a look at board games and table top rules, though this will keep you researching for 100 years.

Some Detail comments:

- Field Commanders moving on the operational level? No problem: You already have a „strategic phase“ in your Concept by definition. Insert a „planning phase“ before that. The FC’s communicate with the General and tell him “I’d like to go from A to B. The General evaluates all suggestions and issues final orders for the operational level game.

- Generals playing the CM level, too? No problem attach a unit to them. That would allow a nice trick: If they are killed in CM, they are out. And the next one can take over.

- I would not use Panzer Corps as a base. That one is too much on strategic level and does not fit to CM well. Plus, it is quite “gamey”. Something like the JT games is, what you are looking for.

Bear in mind: Such a game will take ages to play. It will be very hard to keep players interested. Even when I tried to explain younger friends, that a CM PBEM game can easily take the better part of a year, I found not the least understanding...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 11/22/2018 at 11:51 AM, MOS:96B2P said:

@DerKommissar there is a way to save a core force and import it into existing scenarios and quick battles.  I have used it before and it is kind of a cool way to create your own campaign by using stock scenarios or quick battles.  I'm not sure how it would work in a PBEM environment.  A "Game Master, judge type" would probably have to make the initial core unit imports before every battle then send it to a player who would then initiate a traditional PBEM?  I've not given the mechanics of how this would work for your purposes a lot of thought.  After the original core units are created a spread sheet or word document could track the casualties and the appropriate modification to the core force could be made before the next battle? 

Below are my notes on how I use it.  You may be able to modify the below to fit your idea.  Good luck:)

I did not know you could do that. I'll have to try it out when I have the time, sounds like it's perfect for stringing QBs into a persistent campaign. If I can come up with a way to implement this, it'd be perfect. Very much appreciated, I hope others stumble onto this functionality, as well.

On 11/22/2018 at 12:08 PM, StieliAlpha said:

I think, I mentioned that before: Conceptually, you are trying to reinvent the wheel. I really recommend to have a look at board games and table top rules, though this will keep you researching for 100 years.

Some Detail comments:

- Field Commanders moving on the operational level? No problem: You already have a „strategic phase“ in your Concept by definition. Insert a „planning phase“ before that. The FC’s communicate with the General and tell him “I’d like to go from A to B. The General evaluates all suggestions and issues final orders for the operational level game.

- Generals playing the CM level, too? No problem attach a unit to them. That would allow a nice trick: If they are killed in CM, they are out. And the next one can take over.

- I would not use Panzer Corps as a base. That one is too much on strategic level and does not fit to CM well. Plus, it is quite “gamey”. Something like the JT games is, what you are looking for.

Bear in mind: Such a game will take ages to play. It will be very hard to keep players interested. Even when I tried to explain younger friends, that a CM PBEM game can easily take the better part of a year, I found not the least understanding...

Yeah, thanks to you guys I got a BUNCH of good examples. Lots of wheels: some with chrome rims, others with spinners! I need to see which one is the best fit. 

This General idea has its appeal, and the "planning phase" is probably how this will work. I'd need to find dedicated Generals, though. As with these Campaigns, the more moving parts you have, the more potential delays for everyone involved. I would rather add features as we go along, rather than get rid of them if they don't work. Panzer Corps is most certainly "gamey", but it has a very low barrier for entry. Good starting point.

Yeah, that's a good point. I don't want to rush players' QBs, and will allow battles to wage as long as they need to on the operational layer. The timescale will be days, if I go with WW2 -- or hours for modern. Retreats and cease-fires will be allowed, as well. I'm hoping to everyone will be able to play at their own pace.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

So I've screwed around a bit with roll20, as an alternative to the forum or Google Docs. Here's the link if you want to try it out:

https://app.roll20.net/join/3974528/dmgl5w

I'm curious if you guys are familiar with this platform, or if you prefer more traditional mediums (forums, google docs).

Main advantages with it is that is a more visual representation of the operational layer with the ability for players to interact with the map, including measuring distances, editing their TO&Es, drawing orders and/or writing them in the textbox. Also this thing supports RNG elements very well, if that's what people want. Lends itself well to the more RP heavy "Matrix" format.

Here is a strawpoll for the preferred CM title:

https://www.strawpoll.me/16929097

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


×
×
  • Create New...