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What version of the engine does Shock Force now use...?


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Hello Folks,

 

It's been, well, years, since the last time I posted here.  During a chunk of Shock Force's heyday, I was a semi-frequent poster here.

 

I ended up leaving some time after the Marines module was released, as it became ever more clear that the long-promised moveable waypoints feature was not going to be integrated into the game.  This was a very big deal to me (and others) as the AI needs quite a bit of handholding.  Getting a unit wiped out because one couldn't simply grab and move a waypoint a little bit this way or that was pretty frustrating.

 

Is that still the case?  I was contemplating purchasing the British and NATO modules, but it's highly likely I won't if moveable waypoints were never integrated.

 

It's also a tossup to me as to buy any of the WWII era Combat Mission titles if moveable waypoints are still absent.  Are they?

 

Also, are moveable waypoints integrated into Black Sea's design?

 

Thanks in advance for any feedback. 

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I think 1.32 is the newest version of CMSF with all the modules.  The waypoints in CMSF are not moveable.  BF has plans to create a new game CMSF2.  This will bring CMSF up to the new version of the game engine.  CMSF2 I expect will have moveable waypoints.  All the newer WWII titles were upgraded to have moveable waypoints.  CMBS will also have them.     

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Thanks for the info MOS.

 

Your reference to CMSF2 - will it "simply" be the old content in the new engine (same campaigns, same map designs, same equipment, etc.), or will it be the "original" content but heavily modified so that water and bridges are finally exploitable, or will it be brand new content, with a different region, updated gear and equipment, etc.?

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Thanks for the info MOS.

 

Your reference to CMSF2 - will it "simply" be the old content in the new engine (same campaigns, same map designs, same equipment, etc.), or will it be the "original" content but heavily modified so that water and bridges are finally exploitable, or will it be brand new content, with a different region, updated gear and equipment, etc.?

 

What sburke said reference the content of CMSF-2.  

 

If you have been away from CM for awhile you will probably be surprised by all the features BF has added to the WWII titles in addition to moveable waypoints.  There are bridges, hit decals, tank riders in CMRT, snow in CMFI.  CMBS will have amphibious vehicles. Target briefly, armor target arcs, flame throwers, anti aircraft weapons/vehicles, improvements to the AI to include triggers for AI reaction etc......  These are just some of the improvements I can think of at the moment.  You might want to check out the forums and maybe a demo or three.         

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Thanks for all of the replies!

 

Even after all of these years, this community is still great and generous.

 

MOS, the list of new features that you supplied above: WOW! 

 

I'm drooling over my keyboard now.  That must be the source of all of the sparks coming up from it!  :D

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Here are some highlights of what's happened to the CMx2 engine since the last Shock Force module. When we go back and update Shock Force, this is a good idea of the minimum that will included.

 

MULTIPLAYER

* WeGo TCP/IP with the ability to save but not the ability to replay combat action.

* Pausable RealTime TCP/IP option. A player can request a Pause and, if the other player agrees, the game is Paused until both players are ready to continue play.

QUICK BATTLES

* Redesigned Quick Battle Generator that includes the ability for players to purchase formations, units and support, for their own force and for the computer AI. By deleting subformations/units, setting experience, motivation, fitness, and leadership levels, and attaching Specialist Teams and individual vehicles, the player can custom-tailor their force for the mission.

* Automatically purchased force options are still available for the player and opponent, as well as a "Suggestion" button in the unit purchase screen that will quickly buy a force that the player can then modify.

* Players can now choose their own maps, and preview maps before playing.

USER INTERFACE

* Two new camera control modes have been introduced in addition to the traditional Combat Mission controls: First Person Shooter (FPS), and Real Time Strategy (RTS). These new camera controls allow a player the choice to control the in-game camera in a way that is more familiar to other game genres.

* Hotkey Unit Groups. Select units and assign them to number keys for quick navigation during gameplay.

* New Load New Game dialog screen. The list of scenarios can now be sorted by size, length, or alphabetically.

* Improved Saved Game dialog screen. The list of scenarios can now be sorted by newest file, oldest file, or alphabetically, or filter between single player and PBEM saves. Save games can be deleted in the game.

* Visual Hotkey binding. A new dialog in the Options menu allows you to specify and view key assignments.

* KIAs are shown in the Soldier/Crew Panels to track soldiers lost during the game.

* The Ammo Panel has been redesigned: Ammunition is now listed by name and in discrete quantities instead of with icons and depleting bars.

* Option to disable music separate from other game sounds.

UNITS

* FoW floating icons. FoW floating icons. Instead of getting a general area "?" icon and then immediately progressing to an accurate 3D representation, now there is an inbetween stage where you get a icon that represents the general category of enemy unit and no 3D representation. This tells the player "you know roughly what the unit is, but nothing more specific than that."

* Command lines are back! Command and Control (C3) links can now be shown on the battlefield, allowing you to quickly determine whether subordinate units are in contact with their headquarters. Use Alt-Z.

* Expanded floating icon categories. New unique floating icons have been added for Ammo Bearer, Recon, Engineer, MANPADS, LMG, Light Truck (Antitank), SPAA.

* Dismounted vehicles function as Ammo Dumps, allowing formations to have reserve ammo stored separately on map (automatically distributed for certain Skill Levels).

* Player-placeable static defenses and fortifications such as trenches, barbed wire, and mines.

* Active Protection Systems (APS) are now available for some vehicles.

* Some vehicles can salvo fire two ATGMs simultaneously at the same target.

* Vehicles with laser warning receivers will display hit text warning the player that they have been lased. The vehicle will then rotate towards the threat, deploy smoke launchers and back up to cover, unless it is immediately preoccupied with another task such as engaging an enemy vehicle or moving.

COMBAT AND SIMULATION

* Ground units are now able to fire at attacking aircraft using self-propelled anti-aircraft vehicles, emplaced anti-aircraft guns, or shoulder-launched MANPADS units. Aircraft that are fired upon may have their combat effectiveness diminished, be forced to abort the mission, or even be shot down.

* Soldiers with assault rifles are more likely to use aimed semi-automatic fire at distant targets instead of burst fire. Soldiers fire weapons faster at short ranges. MGs fire longer, more accurate bursts. More realistic/varied RoF of automatic weapons. Ammo bearers and heavy weapon assistant soldiers generally use their weapons only at shorter ranges.

* Soldiers can surrender to nearby enemy units and possibly be "rescued" by nearby friendly units. This replaces the "routing" behavior from CMSF.

* Wide range of weather types and environmental effects, including rain, fog, heavy winds (with ballistic effects), different types of ground conditions, animated water effects, and more...

* Vehicles and soldiers equipped with night vision and thermal vision have a significantly improved boost to spotting abilities in low visibility conditions such as night.

* Buttoned-up armored vehicles spot enemies to their flanks less effectively.

* Improved UI display for timing of preplanned artillery missions also indicates what delay would be after the battle begins.

* Small arms fire causes more suppression than before.

 MAPS AND ENVIRONMENT

* Game performance for large maps has been increased while load times for large maps have been improved.

* Maps can now be up to 8 kilometers long or wide (up from 4 kilometers). However, total map size is still restricted to 16 square kilometers. This means that you can make a 2 kilometer wide map that is 8 kilometers long!

* Conduct combat operations in lush rural landscapes, dense urban settings, or anywhere in between.

* Heavy Rocks, Heavy Forest, Marsh, and Deep Marsh block all vehicle movement, while Deep Marsh additionally blocks infantry movement.

* Water terrain types added: Water, Reeds, Deep Ford, and Shallow Ford. Infantry can cross Deep Ford and Shallow Ford, while non-amphibious vehicles can only cross Shallow Ford.

* Bridges are now available as a terrain type. Bridges come in multiple varieties, including wooden foot bridges, small rural stone bridges, large concrete traffic bridges, and even railroad bridges. Bridge lengths vary from 16 meters to 600 meters long.

* New and improved tree and bush models added, representing a variety of European species ranging in size from small shrubs to towering evergreens. Forest ground tiles can accompany them for proper forest terrain.

* Generic buildings can now be up to 14 stories high, and have sloped roofs available in addition to flat roofs.

 SOLDIERS

* Dynamic, context sensitive equipment loadouts for individual soldiers depending on what weapon and equipment are carried.

* Expanded Soldier details. A completely new way of assigning models and textures allows greater flexibility and variety of how Soldiers look in the game. It also allows for more flexible Modding possibilities.

* When available, pre-made soldier appearance options can be toggled in the editor or QB Purchase screen by using the Appearance button. For example, this allows the player to choose between Ukrainian troops equipped with either new digital camouflage uniforms or older TTSKO uniforms.

* Night vision equipment, such as goggles and weapon sights, will be automatically and visually equipped in scenarios with low-light conditions.

* Many new soldier animations, stances and positions, including kneeling and sitting positions for crew served weapons, pistol firing animations, hand grenade throwing, crew functions, first aid, and much more...

* Automatic ammo sharing between nearby soldier Units.

FIRE SUPPORT

* On-map mortars, both dismounted and vehicle-mounted, are now available. On-map assets such as mortars are able to fire in both direct and indirect modes, using their own spotters or separate forward observers.

* Spotters are now restricted to directing only one Artillery or Air Support Mission at a time. Assets can now be group fired by shift-left-clicking them, allowing more than one Asset to be assigned to the same Mission. EXCEPTION: Spotters directing one UAV Observation Mission can also simultaneously direct one Artillery or Air Support Mission.

* Player-placeable Target Reference Points (TRPs) allow simulating prepared support strikes and ambushes. Support missions aimed at TRPs do not require LOS from the spotter, or any spotting phase.

* Precision artillery missions are available for Point targets. These missions are only available for certain artillery assets and 120mm mortars.

* UAV Support Missions are now available. These missions use UAV support assets which can share spotting information with the player and ground units.

* Helicopter and UAV Support Assets no longer require Line of Sight (LOS) for the spotter to call in a mission. In other words, the mission can be called anywhere on the map.

COMMANDS

* Scout Team Command splits off 2 men to act as scouts.

* Target Armor Arc Command. Instructs units to engage only armored units within the specified arc. As with nearly every Command, outcome varies greatly depending on unit quality and battlefield conditions.

* Target Briefly Command. Tells a unit to fire all its guns on a designated spot for 15 seconds, then cease fire.  Issuing the command repeatedly increases the duration in increments of 15 seconds.

* Mark Mines Command for Engineer teams and squads.

* Waypoint dragging. A waypoint can be clicked on and moved by dragging it to a new location.

* Grouped Spacebar Command system. Instead of getting all of the commands in a big list when the Spacebar is used, instead you get four groups of commands: Movement, Combat, Special, and Administrative. Selecting one of these presents the Commands specific to that Commands Group.

* For vehicles with more than two weapons systems, such as an IFV armed with ATGMs, cannon, and MGs, the Target Light Command will fire only MGs on the target, while the Target Command will allow all weapon systems to be fired.

GRAPHICS AND PERFORMANCE

* Shaders.

* Faster graphics, including FPS improvements, especially for infantry-heavy maps and faster video cards.

* Possible speed improvements depending on video card hardware and drivers.

* Movie Mode.

* Bright Night Mode.

* Hit impacts to vehicles and bunkers now shown graphically ("hit decals").

* Improved rendering. Normal and Bump mapping allows for more texture detail while using less system resources and improving the pressure on framerates.

EDITOR

* Independent Vehicles and Specialist Teams can be purchased and attached to any formation, allowing players to tailor their formations.

* Exit objectives.

* Improved Scenario briefing format, including a new Designer Notes subsection.

* "Reduced headcount" option to simulate previously depleted formations.

* "Ditch Contours" feature. Map editor elevation changes can be "sharp" by holding the control key when clicking tile elevations.  This allows the creation of realistic ditch contours.

* Ability to create AI Triggers that execute actions based on other units or interaction with Objectives.

* Improved responsiveness of 2D editing, especially for large maps.

* Improved load time for 3D Preview, especially large maps.

* Customized "Mod Tags" for most graphics. This allows for multiple mods for the same item without the need to move items in/out of Data folder.

* Ability to specify specific mods be used for a specific Scenario. If CM fails to find the specified mod it will use the default graphics.

* Auto-Assemble linear terrain tool. Roads, walls, fences, and hedges can now be automagically drawn across the map instead of placing them one tile at a time. The old manual selection interface still exists to allow tweaking specific Action Spots.

* BMP map overlay. Instead of having to create game maps by freehand you can now trace over a real world map within the Editor. Four different levels of transparency make the process easier by adjusting for different needs as work progresses.

* More AI Groups. The number of AI Groups available has been increased from 8 to 16. This allows for greater fidelity of AI Plans and their assigned units.

* Copy and paste AI Plans. Create a solid AI Plan, copy it, and paste it into an unused AI Plan slot. Once done the copied Plan can be modified to make a unique variant without having to build the Plan up from scratch.

BONUS

* Combat Victories (Kill Stats) for individual units showing how many and what types of units the soldier or vehicle has eliminated in the mission (totals tracked for campaigns).

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Dear Chris

Just to be sure I understood correct. Do ALL THE changes you mentioned in your post - apply to the current CMSF ? Or from WW2 onwards only ? Thanks :) In other words... Will CMSF be @ par to the CMBS (allowing for the 10year gab from 2008 - 2017) in terms of modern equipment & it's functions. Note aside... The U.S./NATO/british in 2008.. Where There drones ? UAVs ?

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The above post is a quick selection of highlights from the patch notes put together from titles that have been released since the last Shock Force patch. From Battle for Normandy to Black Sea.

 

When CMSF gets updated, it will be current with whatever state the CMx2 engine is in the future. That includes all of the above stuff that was added after Shock Force's last module, plus whatever else is done in the future.

 

Can't answer any questions on equipment implications for Shock Force armies. Simply because I don't know since we haven't investigated that far yet.

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Holy Moley Chris!

 

That's one ENORMOUS list of updates!  Thanks for it!  :)

 

Oh yeah, I definitely plan on "coming home" to all things CMSF related.  Well, not right away - took a huge pay/benefits decrease recently :( , but I aim to slowly work my way back fully into Battlefront's domain.  Yes indeed. 

 

To be clear - the update to the first CMSF "Syria" material, this update will not be a "standalone" series of products, correct?  In other words, if one already owns the original versions of CMSF, then all one will have to do to get the update is spend something like an extra $10 to upgrade it to the latest build of the engine, or is a whole new release planned?

 

If it's a purchaseable upgrade to the original titles, I hope that you don't mind me suggesting that you also include in the missions/campaigns a greatly expanded role for survelliance/strike drones, as well as combat robots, such as the SWORDS system (like this one here: https://www.google.com/search?q=SWORDS+robot&client=firefox&hs=7sD&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:unofficial&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=zi6nVMwDgvbJBIfOgJAB&ved=0CB8QsAQ&biw=1280&bih=523 ). 

 

I would think that especially by 2017, that such systems would have some significant applications.

 

I also wouldn't hesitate with incorporating some of the Real World massive "egg in our face" blowback from CIA machinations in that part of the world.  I'm talking about all of the funding/training we've given to the rebellious "locals" (who oftentimes really aren't all that local) that later end up using the weapons/training we gave them against us, and who also use our enemies captured weapon caches for their own ends.  You know, the tragically typical ISIS and Al Qaeda type stuff. 

 

Alright, thank you again for feedback.  It's greatly appreciated! 

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I am definitely not speaking for Battlefront on this, but I expect it is highly unlikely this will be a $10 upgrade.  The game has to be almost completely redone.  That list above was just features.  In addition to that BF has added bump maps to all the images to allow for better detail all around, updated animations etc.  There is a ton of art work that will have to be done.  The campaigns and scenarios is another issue.  They are done in the old editor, to be ported would require another ton of work if they decide to do that.  Even the ToEs may have to be reworked to accommodate different capabilities added in the newer engine.

 

This is far from a simple upgrade, in fact if BF didn't think there was a really high demand for a reworked one that folks were willing to pay for I doubt they would even have considered it.  I am glad they did as I can't wait to try it with all the current features.

 

As to drones etc, I think the plan is still to have CMSF be still set in 2008.  This is not a 2017 CMSF.

Edited by sburke
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Well, after reading that super extensive list of what it means exactly to supply an updated version of the original CMSF, I'm going to hold off on spending any dollars on the UK and NATO expansions, and save them instead for the rerelease.  

 

Thank you for all of the info!

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To be clear:

 

There is no ETA on Shock Force's upgrade. We aren't working on it right now, and we do not yet have a defined time frame in which to do it either. It's "in the future".

 

We don't know what the price will be yet, or the specifics of how this upgrade will be carried out (whether currently existing scenarios will be retained, etc). I can say that this will be a big effort. Just about every system has undergone major changes since the last version of Shock Force. Existing CMSF maps are in an old format. The TO&E needs to be re-made because we use a completely new TO&E system now. 2D art needs to be remade, 3D art needs to be modified, etc.

 

That's really all the information currently available.

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damn sitting here watching Black Hawk Down and I am thinking, you know with triggers, I could actually do this in a scenario and it would be able to have variable locations for where the chopper(s) goes down etc.... dang.  Chris tell Steve he needs to push this up the priority list.  :D

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But is it going to be a brand new game not compatible with the old CMSF or will we get some sort of patch to bring it up to date akin to the upgrade kits you have now, albeit bigger in size and scope and maybe with a different pricing ?

 

We don't know yet.

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  • 3 weeks later...

Now this is funny. The 36% glitch - affects all Macs ? I have it installed on an OS X Yosemite 10.10.2 and runs smooth. No crashes no glitches.

 

 

So just wondering how your experience has been with 10.10.2....have you been able to play large and huge scenarios/QB without the 36% hang?

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