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Is this too "gamey"?


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I have a PBEM game going (I hope my opponent doesn't see this!). I have one of his tanks spotted, and I zoomed in on it during "playback" to see if it had fired its weapon during the turn. I noticed that when the camera was close to the tank, I could hear the sound of a nearby mortar firing. Even though it wasn't spotted, I could figure out where the mortar was firing from by moving the camera around, and listening to the sounds during playback.

It seems that you shouldn't be able to hear, up close, an enemy unit that hasn't been spotted. Perhaps the developers could put that on the list of small improvements to be made?

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I noticed that when the camera was close to the tank, I could hear the sound of a nearby mortar firing. Even though it wasn't spotted, I could figure out where the mortar was firing from by moving the camera around, and listening to the sounds during playback.

I've used that trick many times, although I don't use it so much lately. I'm not sure exactly how gamey it is. Sound ranging was one of the techniques used during the war, but to use it as precisely as one can in the game would require a specialist unit with specialized equipment, none of which would be available in a CM-type fight. There were however other means of homing in on a firing unit at this level, such as by listening and looking for muzzle blast and the dust raised by firing. Since those are not expressly modeled in the game as yet, I feel a bit better about using the technique you describe.

Michael

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From what I can remember, they make a bit of noise alright. They are definitely louder than a rifle, and there's a pretty good muzzle flash with them (sometimes you can see them by day from a distance if you know where to look), so they aren't real quiet. They aren't like field guns of course, but yeah, you can hear them probably from 500m or more.

As for being "gamey", I located a mortar the same way vs. the AI once. I figured, "AHA! Gotcha!!" Unfortunately, his round was pretty accurate. That ended the game. Let's just say it didn't end well for me :o. Gamey or not, it doesn't always help :rolleyes:

Glenn

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Its gamey as hell. You can hear mortars being fired from kilometers away. But you arent going to be able to pinpoint it like you describe unless its very close (within a few hundred meters). You have to consciously ask yourself if it gives you an unfair advantage (it does) and whether you should use that information (you shouldn't).

If you feel its within close enough range you would be able to pinpoint it (think of a car backfiring on a street or a rifle shot in the woods and how difficult that can be to locate) than you could fire some sort of counterfire mission (mortars or arty) with a wide area fire mission and hope for the best. Back before we had counterfire radar that is how it was done (or from spotting aircraft) so its not farfetched. The challenge is pinpointing the target close enough to have a chance of disrupting their fire.

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Everyone has a different definition of "gamey". On one extreme, you have players who believe that if the game allows it (CM is, after all, a game) you can do it. On the other extreme, you have players who consider many things that I often do, such as the above described method of moving the camera around the battlefield to listen for sound contacts, and my propensity to fire mortars on enemy units that can only be seen by a different friendly unit and not the mortar team (think CM1 borg spotting, only more work and less accurate), as gamey.

Some things are almost universally accepted as gamey (even by me), such as defender or meeting engagement pre-planned turn 1 artillery strikes, or using TRPs in meeting engagements.

Best solution is discuss any house rules with your opponent before you begin. Of course, a house rule such as "no using mortar sound contacts 2000 meters away" would require the honor system.

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Gamey, you want gamey. Playing someone that you can tell has played the scenario before. When you are playing Blind - how can you tell. When their units do not focus on game objectives but for some reason move and locate to an area of the battlefield where your reinforcement are to be brought in at.

That is a easy one to spot, but there is plenty of ways to tell who likes to take advantage anyway they can and how honest or unhonest people are in playing fair in these games.

Anyway, most rules are a waste of breath unless they are easy to enforce or point out that they are breaking them. Because in general, most people will take any advantage they can get and play with it, and if you dont beleive that you are fooling yourselve.

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Anyway, most rules are a waste of breath unless they are easy to enforce or point out that they are breaking them. Because in general, most people will take any advantage they can get and play with it, and if you dont beleive that you are fooling yourselve.

Ouch :) but I know what you mean. There certainly have been a few uncomfortable moments with some opponents. When that happens I "fire" them and don't play the again. Over the last year or so I have built up a group of opponents, your self included BTW, that I totally trust to play scenarios blind and be fair. It is very satisfying. In fact, recently one of my opponents admitted he does not use a password on his turns any more when playing me. Wow, scary level of trust - and he cannot even punch me in RL.

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Ouch :) but I know what you mean. There certainly have been a few uncomfortable moments with some opponents. When that happens I "fire" them and don't play the again. Over the last year or so I have built up a group of opponents, your self included BTW, that I totally trust to play scenarios blind and be fair. It is very satisfying. In fact, recently one of my opponents admitted he does not use a password on his turns any more when playing me. Wow, scary level of trust - and he cannot even punch me in RL.

Well I have to smile, I sure wish we had some cheating going on in the present battle we are playing. Because I am scratching my head at what my mission and briefing was. As to how in the world I was to adcheive it also. Your play so far is not doing much along the lines of what I thought it was telling me you might do in the briefing. So in other words just one confusing small battle.

Oh well, i will find someway to get some kills :)

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Gamey, you want gamey. Playing someone that you can tell has played the scenario before. When you are playing Blind - how can you tell. When their units do not focus on game objectives but for some reason move and locate to an area of the battlefield where your reinforcement are to be brought in at.

That is a easy one to spot, but there is plenty of ways to tell who likes to take advantage anyway they can and how honest or unhonest people are in playing fair in these games.

Anyway, most rules are a waste of breath unless they are easy to enforce or point out that they are breaking them. Because in general, most people will take any advantage they can get and play with it, and if you dont beleive that you are fooling yourselve.

I think that is one of those things about scenarios that is the byproduct of unavoidable foreknowledge if it has been played before. I wouldn’t consider this knowledge to be “gamey” which is a subjective definition beyond “having the flavor of meat from wild animals”(although spelled differently ;)). This is one reason though why I prefer to play meeting engagement PBEMs where we each pick our own force. The only real foreknowledge is the set up areas, and objectives. Beyond that even playing a map once while the other person has not will give an edge of being more familiar with the terrains “sweet spots”. The best thing to do is to do recon before hand of the map and scenario, and to assume your opponent will do it too. I’ll even play through a quick single play of it between turns. To me it just another part of doing good recon. One must still have superior strategy and tactics to win, and or course good luck.

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My two cents on this- If I hear the enemy's mortars I do use that information. That means doing counterbattery fire- if I can spare the firepower, and if a spotter can bring it to the relevant location. So it's not automatically the death of his mortars.

Why do I do it? Because I find it too hard to pretend I don't have information that I do, when I'm trying to make a really competitive plan.

So I also expect my opponent to have the same option, and I move my mortars around occasionally to protect them.

Also I don't search for mortar sounds- not a fun use of gaming time- but sometimes you get them inadvertently.

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I think that is one of those things about scenarios that is the byproduct of unavoidable foreknowledge if it has been played before. I wouldn’t consider this knowledge to be “gamey”...

I wouldn't if it is known that the information is held. If you're expecting your opponent to be playing it blind, then it's extremely bad sportsmanship (is sportsmanship a gamey concept? :) ) for them to not inform you if they've played it before.

The best thing to do is to do recon before hand of the map and scenario, and to assume your opponent will do it too. I’ll even play through a quick single play of it between turns. To me it just another part of doing good recon.

"Best". There's a subjective judgement. If you're supposed to be playing it blind, playing a single player run-through isn't "recon" it's Divine-grade precognition. You know the entire enemy OrBat, including reinforcements and any asymmetrical objectives that you ought to be unaware of. That gives a massive advantage that can only be obtained in the game situation, and is the very definition of gamey.

One must still have superior strategy and tactics to win, and or course good luck.

Breaching the agreed conditions of the game is not superior strategy.

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The best thing to do is to do recon before hand of the map and scenario, and to assume your opponent will do it too. I’ll even play through a quick single play of it between turns. To me it just another part of doing good recon.

Gamey?! Hell Vin, In my book thats cheating.

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Personally, the only "gamey" act in my opinion is the 1st turn bombardment of the setup zone...unless the briefing specifies something that would have that make sense. (Not that I've ever seen that.)

1.) I would never play on a map while in the midst of a pbem. That's me.

2.) I always tell my oppo if I've played a battle or a map, and under what conditions, before we start. (If I remember.) Otherwise, if I recognize it once underway, I tell him then.

3.) I will do a high level scan of the map and objectives during setup. I will not spend any time with the camera down low looking for sweet spots. I try to never peek from the enemy's side. (In my AAR with Bil, when I lost 2 tanks (early) while hunting his wirblewind: I placed the camera at the endpoint of my move order and glanced around from that location. I did NOT place the camera over on "his" terrain and try to find where he could see my tanks. I lost them to a Panther and Jaggie IV with keyhole LOS. Shrug.) Having said that, I do move the camera all over (even on the enemy's side) during the replay.

4.) If I hear a mortar firing, I use that information. Any intel is actionable.

5.) My ego is not tied into any particular game result.

That's my approach. If my oppo has a different approach (playing through the battle first, then again during our pbem) well, that's just more of a challenge for my skill set.

If he's a rude boor, I will finish the game and then politely decline further matches. (Modified by age, language barriers, and skill level. A foreign newb who's young gets more leeway than an old-hand who should know better.)

Ken

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Gamey?! Hell Vin, In my book thats cheating.

I disagree, as it is no different than having played a scenario already either single or HvH. You will be hard pressed to find a scenario that neither player has ever played before. If I was asked if I have played it before I would say so. Now if I discovered a way to remove FOW to see all his units during game, or tried to crack my opponent’s password to see all his units I would consider that cheating. I would certainly never do that. Again, this is why I stick to meeting engagements since the only foreknowledge is set up areas and objectives. What units are in the scenario will have to be discovered. The ME battle is always the most balanced and dynamic in my opinion.

If there was agreement that both of us had never played the scenario before both going into it blind I would also agree to that, and keep it that way.

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Well I have to smile, I sure wish we had some cheating going on in the present battle we are playing. Because I am scratching my head at what my mission and briefing was.

That is interesting. For me my mission is clear but accomplishing it with Tigers hiding all over the place - that is another matter :). I know I scored some early hits but that sure has stopped and now I can't find the buggers (well other than the one that is blasting my infantry at the moment)

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This is one reason though why I prefer to play meeting engagement PBEMs where we each pick our own force.

I think I got "QB meeting engagement" ed out - played to many of them. Lately I have been having fun with mirrored QB Probes. By that I mean same map set to Probe defending in one and attacking in the other. So, the map is the same but the forces are a total surprise and since you have one opportunity as defender and one as attacker there is plenty to do.

That is when I am not playing scenarios blind that is.

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Personally, the only "gamey" act in my opinion is the 1st turn bombardment of the setup zone...unless the briefing specifies something that would have that make sense.

I think most would agree to that as it ruines the game before it even starts. Like a boxing match that starts with a kick to the balls. Ironicly the AI has done that to me most.

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+1 to all that

If he's a rude boor, I will finish the game and then politely decline further matches. (Modified by age, language barriers, and skill level. A foreign newb who's young gets more leeway than an old-hand who should know better.)

I'm not sure if I give much leeway though, other than for language barriers. Live is too short to deal with young or old rude boors. :D

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The best thing to do is to do recon before hand of the map and scenario, and to assume your opponent will do it too. I’ll even play through a quick single play of it between turns. To me it just another part of doing good recon. One must still have superior strategy and tactics to win, and or course good luck.

Actually in thinking about this today “recon” is not the best term to understanding my thought I was trying to get across. “Mission planning/training” is more appropriate. This is something real militaries do all the time, and sometimes the “dry runs” can get very elaborate depending on resourses available, and time to rehearse the mission. I recently read “Service” by Marcus Lutrell. He is the same guy who wrote “Lone Survivor”, also now a movie. He describes a mission that they had enough time to prepare for that an exact replica of a village right down to the shrubs they were to go in to that was created for the SEALS to rehearse on before they did the actually mission. This is my same frame of thinking in that going through a mission before hand is training for it. To use a sports analogy; If a fighter gets sparing partners that have a similar fighting style to the person they are to fight is he “cheating” in training this way? If a player was playing two different opponents at the same time on the same scenario which opponent is it considered he is cheating against? If you just got done playing a scenario, and got into a PBEM against an opponent on the same scenario is it cheating because you have played it being more familiar with the map?

Bare in mind playing a scenario will usually never go the same way especially if once it is against the AI, and another time it is against a human. Even the best planning, and training will often never go the same when the real deal starts, but planning and training before hand has a better chance of success than not training at all not having any idea what to expect. In summery I do not look at mission planning/training to be cheating at all. I think it is more in line with what all militaries do to prepare for a mission being a smart thing to do.

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