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BlackMoria last won the day on May 15 2015

BlackMoria had the most liked content!

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    Manitoba, Canada
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    Wargaming, Agate collecting, Astronomy


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    Manitoba, Canada

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  1. Of course, the demo may drop by the end of September. And some people will eat crow. If one must complain, then one can do so 11:59:59 on the 30th. We are not there, yet, gents.
  2. As a ex-artillery officer, here are the principal differences between the types of platforms. Mortars are high angle only and are incapable of direct fire. Given an equal caliber, a mortar will have a higher rate of fire than a howitzer or a field gun. Mortars (except for the very largest) can be broken down and man packed or carried by improvised transport (like the bed of a pickup truck). For getting directly behind tall intervening terrain with fire, they are a preferred weapon. Most effective against infantry, limited effectiveness against vehicles, emplacements and buildings. Lethality inceases with caliber but portabillity/mobility decreases. Howitzers are capable of direct fire, indirect fire and high angle fire. They are either towed or self propelled. Can get really big calibers. Very effective against infantry, limited against vehicles and emplacements. Preferred weapon of choice of you don't have airpower and want to level a position, a building or structure. Biggest variety of ammuntion type - illumination, Smoke - Base Ejecting, Smoke - WP, Cannister (anti-infantry direct fire),HE, ICM, DPICM, and smart munitions and variable time and time fused ammunition. Field Guns are direct fire weapons and in a pinch, can do low angle indirect fire, limiting their range and usefulness. A anti-tank gun is a example of a specialized field gun, for example. Can get to big calibers like howitzers and are either towed or self propelled. Not a lot of field guns are made anymore due to their limitations as tanks have largely taken over the roles the field guns used to provide. In general, the larger the caliber, the bigger the lethal zone. The larger the round, the smaller the CEP (Circular Error Probable) footprint - a fancy way of saying that if you want to hit a point target, you get the biggest caliber you can get as the round is more stable in the air and less affect by meterological and has a smaller CEP footprint. The larger the caliber, the more destructive it is to vehicles and structures and emplacements. Bigger is better. Call or response times are not weapon dependent. They are determined by the communications capability and doctrines of the C3 systems used by the army in question. Lighter weapons like small mortars can be set up quickly and torn down quickly but once emplaced, once a call for fire goes out, it is the C3 systems, crew training and observer training that determine how fast you see a round on the ground. Combat Mission games try to simulate artillery systems and capability. Why does it take longer to get a 155mm round on the ground verses a 80mm mortar round base on what I stated above? The delay is to simulate the fact that mortars are closer to the enemy than howitzer systems and to reflect time of flight realities. For example, most of the time, a mortar 1 km from the enemy will tend to have a round on the ground sooner than a 155mm howtizer shooting from 7 km away. And the chain of command / communication issues are simulated as well. A US 155mm is not inherently faster than a Soviet built 152mm yet in game, the US player will get fire for effect well before the Syrian player will. This is doctrine and C3I being simulated in game. So the bigger delay in response time is coded into the game to 'simulate' that. Hope that answers your questions.
  3. Shock Force was taken off the store as Shock Force 2 is due for release NLT the end of July. Battlefront wanted to avoid potential confusion between the two titles for buyers. I don't know if the original Shock Force will re-release after Shock Force 2 drops or not.
  4. Notice this strange issue several time while playing "Lock Shields" from the Taskforce Spartan Resolve campaign. i am playing real time. I have notice quite a number of times now, when I load from a game save, LOS (using Target) shows as invalid for 10 to 15 seconds once the game loads and the game is unpaused and then returns to normal. Noticed this and tested it further. I moved a vehicle 50 metres away from two vehicles and a infantry squad. There is some brush and trees in the area. The two vehicles and the infantry squad have a valid LOS on the target vehicle. I saved my game and quit. I loaded the game save and unpaused. I used Target to check the LOS from the each vehicle and the squad to the nearby vehicle. It showed the LOS as blocked from each. Around 10 to 15 seconds of game time later, the LOS showed a valid LOS from each, None of the vehicles or the squad moved in that 10 to 15 seconds. Not sure what is happening here. This is the first I noticed this issue and I haven't done another scenario to do more testing. But the issue is consistent enough I can recreate, at least in the area of the map where I first noticed the problem. I am going to check other locations in that scenario to see if the noted behavior is there. But I am posting this to see if anyone else has experienced this.
  5. I played Blood in the Streets, the 4th or 5th campaign scenario of Task Force Spartan Resolve the other day. I had one BMP-2 in my force mix at game start. I gave the BMP-2 an armored target arc. It spotted a T-90 at a couple of hundred metres as the tank whipped around the corner of the urban terrain and it did indeed, fire the ATGM and killed the T-90, rather than use the cannon.
  6. 1. Understand your mission objective / win conditions. By that, the briefing will tell you want you need to accomplish. 2. Now, look at the map and identify your objective(s). Now study the map on where to maneuver. Look for covered approachs, areas you can speed across, positions you can support your forces with fire from, places you can place observers. Now make a plan on how you will get from where you are to where you want to go. Now, this is important. Get your camera POV down at ground level and look at the route you are taking. Looking at terrain from pie in the sky POV and ground level is night and day. At ground level, you can see the minute depressions and folds in the ground. What looks like a unviable route (like open ground) may be good to move infantry to move across due to depressions and minute contours of the ground, affording protection from observation. 3. Other have mentioned recon. Take time to have your forces move into positions of observation and then wait. It may take a few minutes for your spotters to spot well hidden forces. I have spent up to a hour in an hour and half game infilitrating my spotters/scouts to see what can be seen with very little shooting, and the last half hour the fury of battle of unleashing fire on the enemy I know about. Take time to simply position your troops and wait and watch. 4. Try to avoid the pressures of the clock. Yeah, the mission is on a timer and the newcomer thinks he has to revve up the engines on his war machines and race off.... and usually to disaster. Even the biggest map in the game can be driven across in under 5 minutes. Take your time. Take time to move your forces on covered routes or through trees. Take time to observe. Take time to recon the area. Be mindful of the clock but do not become fixated on the time. The moment you feel the pressure of the time remaining and start being hasty will be the time you will play dearly for your haste. 5. Moving troops need to covered with fire, in the event they are shot at, you can immediately shoot back. Shooting troops need to mindful that firing exposes them to the enemy. Yeah, that position on the hill may be great for observation and firing from but if half the map can see that hill, expect to get shot at ... a lot. And shelled. Modern warfare is a sword that cuts both ways. 6. Unless you are a naturally born tactician, you will make mistakes. Learn from them and adapt. Overtime, you will make fewer mistakes. Most of all, have fun with it.
  7. The winner for missile gymnastics goes to the TOW. I have seen some really weird shots in game. Like firing off at a 45 degree angle from launcher to target and doing all sorts of acrobatics to try to get back on target. Which is never does.
  8. What is that line from Babylon 5? Ah,yes..... "The avalanche has already started. It is too late for the pebbles to vote."
  9. No. Just No. I am a real time player only. Maybe I will get on board with "WEGO only" the day the micro AI stops doing stupid things with my troops when executing orders but we are not there yet. RT allows me greater fidelity of control over my troops and allows me to intervene in correcting the occasional boner the micro AI tries to pull. So, No.
  10. We all had those "WTF?" moments. Some are comical. Some are rage inducing 'want to punch your fist through the screen of the computer" moments. Let's hear your favorite 'WTF?" moments. This is the most recent one for me. Scenario is First Clash - I am playing blue against the AI. It is 3/4 way through the scenario. For 20 minutes, I am looking at a T-90 with two Bradleys which are in a treeline, but the T-90 is out of range of the TOW-2 according to the Target line of sight. Range is about 3800 m. Which explains why the Bradleys don't fire at the T-90. And the T-90 doesn't appear to have spotted the two Bradleys as he isn't firing at them. I am out of precision rounds so I opt for a point attack artillery mission with 3 tubes of 155 on the T-90 to take him out or force him to move. The T-90 sits unconcerned through an artillery adjustment. Now comes Fire for Effect. The first salvo of three rounds are very close but you would imagine some supression is going on. There is now smoke from the HE going off around the T-90. So reduced visibility is coming into play. On the second salvo, I get a direct hit on the T-90 with one round, a second round right beside the tank. Seconds later, the T-90 fires at one of the two spotting Bradleys and kills it. After not seeing this Bradley the entire 20 minutes, suddenly the tank sees and fires and kills at Bradley in a treeline at 3.8 km, while obscured by dust and smoke from two salvos of artillery on it position and after taking a 155 round to turret, whichi is certain to put heavy suppression on the crew. WTF? Seriously? And to add insult to injury, the T-90 just sits there (it may have been immoblized). The third salvo of 155 rounds comes in and the tank gets hit again. Again, no kill on the tank. And the T-90 seconds later fires and kills the second Bradley. WTF!!?? SERIOUSLY?? At this point, I want to put my fist through my computer screen. Regrettably, this was being played in RT mode, not WEGO, so I have no game save of the turn to examine. Bug? Possibly. The T-90 didn't see the Bradleys for 20 minutes as he didn't fire yet he responded with a shot at each just after being hit by an artillery round, which as a minimum, should have put some serious suppression on the gunner. And the tank was very hard to see due to smoke effects from the HE rounds going off around the tank, so spotting should have been degraded as well. So, it was a major WTF moment for me. I can laugh about it now as the circumstances are so ridiculous one can't help laugh of the absurdity of the event. So, what is your WTF moment?
  11. Despite doing the third mission - War Angel down twice now, I can't get better than a draw, despite getting all five hide locations, the crash site and all but two of the minor location objectives. In one play through, I even killed all enemy vehicles except one and killed about half of the infantry. My losses were two WIA. I'm confused. It states you rescue War Angel if you get a major victory or higher. What do I have to do to get a major victory?
  12. There were 'bad guys' but they were mostly at the leadership levels. The rank and file soldiers simply tried to get though the war alive and acted to protect their friends, their family and their town or village. A number crossed the line and went from 'defender' to murderer. That happened a lot. The worst duty I had was 'documenting atrocities and war crimes' for the UN. About as ghastly as it can get for me and a real low point in my life. But take this as someone who was boots on the ground for that particular situation. I don't broad brush the Serbian people as a nation of bloody thirsty murderers. The leadership either condoned, ordered or ignored the killing done by troops of their country and in my opinion, they should go to the wall for that. But the majority of Serbs or Croats or Bosnians didn't know what their leaders were allowing to happen at the time and why the long period of denial that took place. Until the videos and other evidence started coming forward and the Serbs simply couldn't deny what happened. Serbia is a nation of victims in my book. As were the Croatians and the Bosnians. Victimized by the war and further victimized by the complicity of their leaders who carried out war crimes and lied to the very people they were to protect and serve. There is a thin line between being a soldier and being a mass murderer. That line was crossed too many damn times in that conflict but I blame the leadership and the soldiers who decided to cross that line - not the people of that nation nor the soldiers who conducted themselves honorably and 'chose' that was a line they would not cross.
  13. @Lacroix Maybe trying really reading my earlier post. Like really read it. I didn't 'bare my soul' for the amusement of the pundits following this thread. I acknowledge your pain because I can see it and have seen it over and over through the years until I want to scream. War did something terrible to your country, your family and your friends and, yes ... to you as well. **** happens and the innocent pay the heaviest price for it. Deal with it because there is nothing that you can or will do that will ever set that right. Now really listen to me. Because anger has a way of eating a person alive. I KNOW. LET. IT. GO! Let the anger go. Posting about injustices on a thread will never convince those who believe their point of view is right, will get sympathy from those who feel your pain and anger and will never truly be understood by those who weren't there or had to suffer the aftermath of those events. But it will change nothing. No wrongs will be righted. And the anger will remain and you have gone nowhere like a gerbil in a wheel. I made a choice to get off my wheel because it was eating me up. Being angry a long time isn't really living. That is a choice you can make as well.
  14. Looks like this thread is rapidly swirling down the drain. Perhaps best to shove a plug in. Looks, gents, war is hell. There is nothing glamorous about it. There is nothing moral about it. And it is nothing to celebrate. It is really easy to point fingers at the other side and decry them as murderous bastards, fascists, commie pinkos, the great satan... pick you favorite slur. It changes nothing in the long run. It doesn't bring back the dead. It doesn't comfort or heal the wounded, whether those wounds are physical or psychological. It just leads to another cycle of violence. Like the saying in Star Wars - anger leads to the dark side. When I was in Bosnia in '93 as a Canadian peacekeeper, two Bosnia Serb soldiers came up to me at a checkpoint. They were two brothers from Toronto, Canada. I asked them why they were here in Serbian military uniforms. I then heard a story about as they were growing up, they heard from their grandparents and their parents over and over about what the Croats did to the family in WW2 and stuff post war. They were here to defend the motherland and to settle accounts with the Croatians for something that happened to the family nearly 50 years ago. I don't get that - they were born in Canada (their family came to Canada post war) yet they felt that this was THEIR war to fight. Anger and hatred lead them here. Instilled by the anger and hatred of their parents, perpetrated by anger and hatred from their parents. Fighting in a war not of their making, for a cause not their own, for a homeland they have never seen. A cycle of violence nearly 50 years in the making. I have seen some of that anger expressed here and I am reminded of that time talking with the two brothers. And I am seeing the seeds of that tragedy here. I was in a very dark place for a long time after my peacekeeping tour in '93. Some would call it PTSD. You can only see so much of genocide up close and in your face and a part of me inside died. There was no moral high ground for either side, All sides did stuff terrible things that are war crimes - the Bosnians, the Croatians and the Serbs. Yes, the bulk of the ethnic cleansing was done by the Serbs but is no excuse for the Bosnians and the Croatians to do what they did. I saw a beautiful country in ruins, shattered lifes, mounds of civilian dead, and a land with seeming madmen running around with guns seeming to want to re-fight WW2 or address the wrongs they suffered in that conflict.. Chains of the past. So many people in the world are bound by those chains. I see the ghosts of the past conflicts playing out in the conflicts of today. There is the real tragedy. We seemingly can't escape our past and we poison the well for our children so they are doomed to repeat our mistakes. Anger leads to the dark side. That is true. I lived it grappling with my PTSD and the nightmares of seeing a country gone mad in Bosnia. I wanted to kill every ethnic cleansing son of bitch with a gun. It took a long time but I came to accept certain things. I saved lots of civilians, Serbian, Croatian and Bosnian but not enough for me. I wanted to save all of them. I couldn't and felt guilty for decades as a result. War lesson 1: In war people die, soldier and civilian alike, War lesson 2: You can't do anything to change lesson 1. It took a long time for me to embrace that and that saved my sanity ultimately. There is real evil in the world and real monsters. The monsters look like us and talk to us but make no mistake, there are real monsters out there. You only see them for what they are by what they do. I want to Kill All The Monsters but the reality is, strike one down and another rises to take his place. Nothing changes and we learn nothing from our history. Hitler was struck down and Rwanda and Bosnia happened. Deal with those and then it is Sudan. Or Cambodia. Or Syria. Or ISIS. Or who ever the next Hilter wannabe is. People who don't learn the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them. Chains of our past. Everyone has this issue. Do you allow the past to bind you and deny you a better future or do you let it go. The chains of the experiences in Bosnia bound me and put me on a self destructive path to most likely a grim future. Only by embracing what happened and learning to rise above it, to not allow the past to control my present so I can forge a new future did I finally find peace for my soul. It was hard because the chains are thick and strong - memories, recollections and seeing stuff like the genocide in Bosnia playing out elsewhere in the world brings it all back. But I broke free finally and the memories are not emotionally charged as they were in the past as a result. No, the memories never go away. But you can make peace with them and find a way to a sort of 'wholeness' again. I have rambled on. Partly to acknowledge my past and the role I played in it. A affirmation that something in life tried to beat me down and I rose above it. Partly to my brothers in arms from any side of the conflicts who are dealing the the imprint of what total war does to their soul and well being, that there is a way ahead. Memories can become less emotionally charged and less painful. Memories do fade somewhat through time, working hard toward wholeness, and throwing off the shackles of the past and living for the future. It is not a easy road or a fast road and not everyone can break their chains of the past but it can be done. And finally, to the Croatian, Bosnian and Serb posters. I see anger and pain in your words. War is terrible and it will write things on your soul that will deny you a bright, happy future. I know. I was there. I have lived it. Acknowledge the past, regardless of how ugly or hurtful it is. Realize the past is the past and is not your future unless you allow it. Do not do what a Serb family that moved to Toronto did and poison their two sons with what happened long ago in a land now far away that resulted in them involving themselves in killing other people, perhaps being killed themselves and exposing themselves to the horrors of war, for a cause not that shouldn't been theirs to fight and a war they shouldn't have been involved in, all over something that happened nearly 50 years ago. Don't deny the future of your children or grandchildren by binding them in YOUR chains of the past and dooming them to fight in some future war because the last war had a negative impact on your family. War is death, destruction, shattered lives and futures denied. Don't glorify it and not rationalize it. Your a damn fool otherwise.
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