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I'm new to this forum, so if I ask a question that you have already covered before, feel free to just point me in the direction of the answer. And now the questions.

1) In non hex based systems tank movement can be called erratic at best. I have seen tanks come up to an opening and for one reason or another turn their side armor to the enemy. Are you installing some kind of AI to prevent this?

2)Tanks that could not be killed when they only presented their front armor would occasionally panic and their inexperienced crews would turn side or rear armor to the enemy. This is represented in Steel Panthers by a routed tank. In Steel Panthers the routing tank gets to run away with out the enemy having a shot at his vulnerable armor facing. Are you going to add a non good order retreat to your rout / surpression AI.

3) When a tank crosses a wall / fallen tree or other low obsticale, they often showed their belly armor and were very vulnerable. Do you account for this?

4) Armor in rugged terrain (and in normal terrain too) would break down, throw a track, etc. It became very important to have control of the battlefield to recover the losses. Do you address this?

5) Vehicles have momentum and energy, it takes a while to get up to top speed, brake, etc. Ambushes were often set up to take advantage of the fact that these vehicles would have to slow down to take a sharp curve or climb a steep hill. Do the law's of physics apply to your electronic vehicles?

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Dave, I think i may be able to answer one or two of your questions.

1. Tanks will rotate so that their front armour faces the greatest AT threat if they have no other movement orders.(I think)However, Steve mentioned something about overwhelming force. The example he used was a Sherman with a 75mm gun confronted by a KT. He said the Sherman would probably plomp down some smoke and retreat.

3.There was a question about this not too long ago and I think the answer was that it is on the list, but BTS weren't sure if it was in yet.

4.Many breakdowns are simulated in the game, and some are more prone to happening under certain conditions. Vehicles can be recovered depending on many factors.

"For Campaigns we have abstracted vehicle recovery. Depending on the battlefield conditions, the nature of the breakdown, the length of time before the next battle, and lighting conditions will all determine if you get your vehicle back. A vehicle with a tossed track, at night, while on the attack, and the next battle in 4 hours will have a much better chance than something that got nailed in the roadwheels in broad daylight while on the defensive. Oh, and loose the field, you loose your vehicles 100% of the time." - Steve

5.I think the real world laws and physics apply to everything in this game!

[This message has been edited by krm (edited 08-25-99).]

[This message has been edited by krm (edited 08-25-99).]

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Guest Big Time Software

Hello Dave, and welcome!

KRM did a good job, but here are some more details...

1. I think I can guess as to what game you are talking about smile.gif As Fionn or Martin will tell you, the TacAI (tactical, lowest level of AI) that is available to all units during resolution, is TOP notch. Tanks do all sorts of things to keep themselves alive, including doing their own thing.

2. Right now tanks are coolheaded. Panicking hasn't been added. However, when they find themselves in a tight spot, they can do all sorts of things; rotate hull for best protection, move out of LOS, pop smoke and reverse course, etc. They do this very well. There is also no danger of the vehicle getting away for free simply because it is panicked because of the realtime nature of the resolution phase.

3. There are no underbelly shots at the moment (on the list). However, vehicles crossing obsticles are slowed up quite a bit. This gives enemy units a nice chance of whacking the vheicle while it is sitting still. Velocity of the vehicle is very important to the targeting equations, so being hung up on a wall makes for a good target.

4. Vehicles can, and do, become immobilized through movement. Generally it only happens in bad ground weather (wet or snowy) or in rough terrain. We decided to not simulate thrown tracks from tight curves because we couldn't quantify different vehicle's realistic chance of tossing a track. No two tracked vehicles are the same, so the chance is too random for our tastes.

In campaign games it will be important to maintain control of disabled vehicles and bailed out crews. You have a chance of getting repaired stuff back in for the next battle. In a single scenario it is only important to not loose a vehicle totally because it counts against your victory point total.

5. Vehciles do have acceleration and deccerlation (the latter with one exception). Vehicles do need time to build up speed (depending on vehicle and terrain) and that speed affects the turning radius too and their speed of turning. This is a very important part of the game. If you set up an ambush at at tight curve, the vehicle will have to slow down to take it which, as you say, makes for a nice spot for some AT weapons smile.gif

Unfortunately, we do not have braking. Trust us, we would love to, but trying to simulate breaking in a turn based game is very hard all by itself. But then we have to teach the AI about breaking... that is really tough. Teaching an AI that it has to brake here so that it can actually be stopped there is not easy to do without bringing the CPU to a halt. So we figured that it would be best to leave it out so that the AI wouldn't be unduly penalized when using vehicles. As unrealistic as it might be in some cases (slow moving vehicles, which is the norm, aren't really affected by this), what we have is far more realistic than other wargames out there.

Steve

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Delaware Dave:

1. I know the game you're talking about and when it was released I wrote a review of it which had to be pulled because it was so critical of that particular game for that among other things wink.gif.. It doesn't happen in CM. The ONLY time I've seen a unit exposing its flanks when I didn't order it to is if they are advancing in column formation along a road and the vehicle in front gets hit and destroyed. Then the vehicles behind will immediately detour around it and expose their flanks to fire..

Even then that's not a flaw that's exactly what should happen..

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