Combatintman Posted October 23, 2016 Author Share Posted October 23, 2016 I am back again, to recap my previous post, here is a summary of the things I’m going to add to the mission: Platoon-sized Pakistani Army QRF. CIA Handler and Agent plus possibly one or two family members. Property defending residents. Armed private security guards. Pakistani Police road block and patrol and possibly a SWAT team equivalent. Now because I want to do a bit of testing as I add these elements I’m going to deal with the Agent and Agent Handler group (known henceforth as ‘Agent Group’ in this narrative) first followed by the Property Defending Residents (henceforth known as ‘Property Defenders’). Initially I just want to test that the Agent Group can be seen and attacked by Property Defenders so I’m just going to pick a few and plonk them on the map and then see at what ranges the Property Defenders start spraying and praying. I may need to fiddle around with hard and soft factors to make this work so be prepared for some testing and adjusting. First off the bat then, let’s look at the Agent Group and here is where I introduce a little known trick in the CM engine because of course the Blue Force pick does not have agents. To enable Blue to pick from the Red force pick you have to go into the ‘Data’ screen and change the mission from ‘Blue vs Red’ to ‘Red vs Red’. This then gives you the full suite of Red units to pick from. Once you’ve picked your units you then go back to the data screen and change it back to ‘Blue vs Red’. The screenshot below shows where this is. Starting with the CIA Handler who will be called ‘Tom’. The image below shows how I’ve set him up and renamed him from IED Cell to ‘CIA Handler’ and called the triggerman ‘Tom’. For hard and soft factors you can see the choices I’ve made. I won’t dwell on them but suffice to say I’ve chosen them based on what I think would be right. Importantly now that I’ve changed from ‘Red vs Red’ I must remember to use the ‘Purchase Blue’ screen otherwise ‘Tom’ becomes a double agent!!! Next the Agent and his family – I’ve opted not to bother with the family – just because I don’t think they’re going to add much value. I don’t want the agent to be armed so the Force Element will be the UNCON ‘Spy’ unit. I am going to pick one of these to replicate the Agent and I will give him pretty poor hard and soft values to reflect the fact that he has no military training and that he will be frightened and unfamiliar with what is going on and won’t have been hitting the gym every day. This is part of my rationale for including the Agent Group as it means that the player will have to shepherd a slow and unpredictable person around the battle space. Finally as part of this segment I want to deal with the ‘Property Defenders’. In reality these are civilians who will fight tooth and nail to defend their property but may not have military training, will not have the best equipment etc so I will give them fairly poor hard and soft values too. The property defenders need to be armed so I am going with a similar solution to ‘Tom’ by picking an IED unit, stripping out the IEDs leaving me with an AK-47 armed individual. As I mentioned earlier on, I want to run some tests to see how these elements react to each other and if necessary test and adjust. So with my ‘Property Defenders’ I initially went with the lowest experience value of ‘Conscript’ which would be reflective of their ability but unfortunately in testing I pretty much had to move my Spy Group virtually on top of them to provoke a reaction. However they did react to the SEAL team from a slightly greater (but still really close) distance. So following further testing I manipulated what I think are the two important factors in this calculus. The first one is obvious which is to increase the experience level of the ‘Property Defenders’. The second is less obvious but I touched on it in one of my earlier posts and it relates to the ‘Civilian Density’ setting within the data menu. This was originally set as ‘Sparse’ and as a result I have changed it to ‘None’. Is it reflective of the environment … no, however it has a direct impact on how UNCON units are spotted. In simple terms, the greater the civilian density the harder UNCONs are to spot so by dialling down the values I can increase the likelihood of them being spotted which is the effect I want to achieve. Additionally, unless the player reads this thread or cracks the scenario editor open, they will never know what the values are. My overall reflections on this testing is that I can’t really get the exact results I wanted to achieve which were to make it possible for ‘Property Defenders’ to be able to spot out to about 4-5 action spots. However things are what they are so rather than brood about it, I will stick with my final settings and lay out the ‘Property Defenders’. No need for details here because I have shown you the mechanics but the art/science of laying them out requires a bit of what the military call ‘Red Teaming’ and/or Intelligence Preparation of the Battlespace. If you look at either my planning thread on the CMRT board or anything that @Bil Hardingberger has done in his many AARs you get the idea. Put simply, I don’t want to put ‘Property Defenders’ all over the map, just in those places that I think will sit close to likely exfiltration routes that the player will take. Remember the effect is just to generate thought and planning in the mind of the player. However what is important is that I record the numbers of ‘Property Defenders’ that I pick and deploy in case I decide to set an ‘Enemy Casualty’ parameter as a victory condition for the Blue Player. The magic number is 15 for those that are interested. Now on to the Private Security Guards (PSGs) and as with the ‘Property Defenders’ the intent here is to create problems in the battle space rather than make them something that the player has to kill. If you recall, I had identified two areas on the map that looked like business premises that would be likely to employ PSGs. The complexes both have two entrances so it is logical and plausible that they would have permanent guards at those entrances. In addition, they probably have a mini QRF or patrol force to check the perimeter. The other part of the PSG narrative is to ‘Red Team’ their likely response to the sound of helicopters and gunfire in the area. Realistically they would probably hunker down initially and then when the gunfire subsides would patrol the perimeter of their premises. They absolutely aren’t going to go charging around the countryside hunting Navy SEALs … as everybody hears in the workplace ‘not my job mate …’ Having established that I need a unit pick that will give me the option of permanently placing people on the gates and a small patrol force. The patrol force will of course require an AI plan but I’ll deal with that later. Despite my earlier disparaging comments about Ninjas, for variety I have decided that the Private Security Company will be called ‘Black Pathan Security’ which now allows me to use the Fighter (aka ‘Ninja’ black uniform) pick. As I have covered off previously on the force pick mechanics I will not spend any time on the detail save to talk about hard and soft factors. A typical PSG profile would involve basic weapons, limited ammunition, average to poor leadership, average fitness, low to average motivation and some form of training so I’ll go with settings that reflect that profile. I don’t intend to fiddle with the settings too much as I now have a pretty good idea of how the lower end settings work from my previous test with the ‘Property Defenders’. Picking these was a bit fiddly because weapon allocation throws up some randomness – as I said what I wanted was basic weapons and my first picks gave me sniper rifles in the mix. To get around this I had to delete and pick again using the same settings. In the end I had to do this four times to finally end up with two groups that had no sniper rifles. While I’m not going to create an AI plan yet for my proposed patrolling groups, I have used the ‘Rename’ feature in the force selection menu to name the patrol groups so that I can easily identify them later which will save me some faffing around later trying to find them. Also, as with previous Red force picks, I have made a note of the headcounts and the sum total of the PSGs is 24 men. Next Force Pick is the Pakistani Police checkpoint and this caused me a few difficulties which inevitably involved some form of compromise. Ideally I wanted to pick a unit from the Special Forces Pick because of the uniform colour which is at least gives me a black coloured top and a helmet of the right pattern. However this proved unworkable in realism terms because Special Forces units come with NVGs which is not something a standard police patrol would have and it would unrealistically increase their spotting capabilities. In the end I had to park my aspiration to have them look like the Pakistan Police and focus on capabilities and effect. The end result of this was to pick a Militia Battalion which have plain green uniforms. I then looked at the unit in the ‘Deploy Red’ screen to find elements that would resemble a Police patrol and ended up with the Bn HQ comprising 5 x guys armed with 2 x pistols and 3 x AKs, A Coy HQ comprising 3 x guys armed with 2 x pistols and 1 x AK and finally the A Coy Command Team comprising 6 x guys armed with 5 x AKs and 1 x RPD. The plan is to have the two HQ teams static on the checkpoint and the Command Team as the satelliting patrol. As you can see above I have already taken note of the numbers (14). Hard and soft values are subject to change based on later testing, for now they are Experience – Regular, Motivation – Normal, Fitness – Fit, Leadership – 0, Ammo – Scarce, Equipment – Poor and Vehicles (not that it matters) – OK. It’s been a while since we’ve had a graphic so I’ll now construct the Vehicle Checkpoint (VCP) using flavour objects in the map editor. Another solution would have been to use MG bunkers in the Red Force Pick but these have limited FOV and I want to give these guys the best chance of spotting any SEALs or Agent Groups transiting the vicinity. So I’m going to use drums and I want the stripey ones. Flavour objects can be a bit fiddly because you don’t have any reference to what the numbers ‘1’, ‘2’ and ‘3’ mean. Community members have produced reference guides but bottom line is that I just prefer selecting one of each and placing them on the map in different action spots. I then go into the 3D preview and actually look at them so that I can see which one I want. I can then delete the unwanted ones in 3D view by hitting CTRL-CLICK with my cursor on the unwanted item. Manipulating flavour objects is handily explained in a panel on the bottom LH corner of the map editor once you select ‘Flavor Objects’. This image shows the interface. So after some SHIFT-CLICK activity in the 3D Preview to line up my oil drums and then going to the ‘Deploy Red’ screen to put my recently picked VCP team, this is the finished result. I have to think about the satellite patrol when I get to programming the AI but that is a ‘later’ task. The Police SWAT or Special Commando team is next. This made for a fairly easy pick in terms of finding something that looks like the real thing because of course the Special Forces Company is clad all in Black. Given that the intent of this force is just to add another factor to consider for the player and I think we are really pushing credulity by having it a part of the mission I don’t want to overcook this force. I may actually delete it later but we’ll see about that. So I picked a Special Forces Company and stripped everything out of it apart from the Coy HQ and associated UAZ-469 utility vehicle. This gives me a lightly equipped team of six guys armed with 6 x AK variants and an UGL (and NVGs). This should be more than enough because all I plan for them to do is to arrive at the top LH corner of the map and then move to the Compound to ‘secure the crime scene’. In my view if the player even sees them then the mission is really going downhill. Hard and soft values chosen were: Experience – Crack, Motivation – High, Fitness – Fit, Leadership - +2, Supply – Full, Equipment – Poor and Vehicle Condition – OK. A slight nuance to note with this force pick is that the UAZ-469 does not have a dedicated driver so when the unit dismounts, the vehicle goes nowhere. This may be relevant when I think about AI plans. Anyway, here is what they look like in their entry area. Now for the Pakistani Army which of course is not modelled in CMSF. This pick will inevitably involve compromises and the suspension of reality. Originally I was looking at a BTR mounted Mech Inf platoon mainly because the type is in very limited service in the Pakistani Army and Mech Inf uniforms look similar to Pakistani Army uniforms. However in the end I went for the BRDM Recce Coy as, although it is named as a company in terms of dismounted strength I get 27 dismounts which is about platoon-sized. Those numbers are just about right and I have the added advantage of getting 7 x BRDM-2s and I have two separate manoeuvre elements which gives me flexibility when designing AI plans. As to hard and soft factors I went with Experience – Veteran, Motivation – High, Fitness – Fit, Leadership - +1, Supply – Full, Equipment – Poor, Vehicles – OK. As with previous picks I may fiddle with these later if testing requires it. Overall headcount for this unit is the 27 dismounts plus two crewmen in each vehicle (2x7) = 41. I then went hit ‘Deploy Red’ and put them on their likely entry point at the top RH corner of the map. The image shows part of this unit, note that I have made sure that they are all facing in the correct direction – one of those many little touches that add polish to your mission. We’re really making progress but things are about to get more tricky because after a bit of housekeeping it is time to delve into the object of many fears …. the AI. 0 Quote Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
Join the conversation
You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.