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How to: satisfying quick battle experience?


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I would like to get some tips on setting up satisfying and challenging quick battles. What are the Dos and don'ts of selecting the AIs forces? How big of an advantage to give the AI? Picking the map? The game mode? And so on... At the moment I am mainly playing CMBS but I am sure this stuff is pretty universal in CM.

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The key to having an enjoyable QB experience is to never let game pick yours or AI's forces. Pick them manually in a whatever composition you will want to fight with/against.

But before you'll start purchasing forces - pick and preview the map manually. Find the one that seems like an interesting one to fight in and stick with it.

Like are you in a mood to use Ukrainian infantry to attack a Russian outpost that would have some tanks in it? Then go ahead - have yourself infantry with a support of lightly armored but heavy punching BTR4E and give an enemy some T72B3 or T90A. Want to set up a "tower defense" scenario as americans versus heavy russian armored advance? Buy a ton of foxholes, minefields, sandbags and a lot of infantry with ATGM while giving an enemy an advantage in points and fill his roster with nothing but tanks in an 'assault' scenario where you are the defender. Just set up the game according to your wishes.

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3 hours ago, ratdeath said:

Would be awesome if there is a one player option where you could send the file to a friend and they pick the AI force.

Maybe possible to let a friend (trustworthy) remote control with TeamViewer and pick the AI force.

Could the friend set up the QB and sent the save file to you? But the downside of this is both must have to the same game and version.

 

3 hours ago, kraze said:

The key to having an enjoyable QB experience is to never let game pick yours or AI's forces. Pick them manually in a whatever composition you will want to fight with/against.

But before you'll start purchasing forces - pick and preview the map manually. Find the one that seems like an interesting one to fight in and stick with it.

Like are you in a mood to use Ukrainian infantry to attack a Russian outpost that would have some tanks in it? Then go ahead - have yourself infantry with a support of lightly armored but heavy punching BTR4E and give an enemy some T72B3 or T90A. Want to set up a "tower defense" scenario as americans versus heavy russian armored advance? Buy a ton of foxholes, minefields, sandbags and a lot of infantry with ATGM while giving an enemy an advantage in points and fill his roster with nothing but tanks in an 'assault' scenario where you are the defender. Just set up the game according to your wishes.

What types of QB do you think the AI is the most competent at? For example I don't really like the types of battles where you kill a whole tank battalion in a single bottle neck...

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From my experience AI is fine in every mode as long as you give it an appropriate roster for the task. It certainly will try to flank/surround the objective on the offense instead of just moving there head on.

However here's the thing - AI strategy (as opposed to tactics, e.g. maneuvers) in CM is governed mostly by the mission designer so don't expect QB to have a complexity of a typical well-scripted battle. Treat QB as just that - a simple mission with a simple objective but with a freedom for you to choose when, what and how to fight, a combat sandbox if you wish.

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The more points you use, the better the force picker will do. The QB force selector uses complete TOE formations. It will not buy a company of tanks, strip out one platoon, thin out the other platoons by one tank each, and use the extra points to beef up the assault engineers. No. It will buy the enter company of tanks. (Or a platoon. Or two platoons.)

There were some odd purchases by the picker which were bugs. Those are in the past...as far as is known. 

The more you give it, the more flexibility the solution will have and the better it'll be.

In general, I pick the AI on defense and beef it up with a + %.

The good news? If you don't like what you get, quit and try again.

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On 1/14/2018 at 1:06 PM, The_MonkeyKing said:

I would like to get some tips on setting up satisfying and challenging quick battles. What are the Dos and don'ts of selecting the AIs forces? How big of an advantage to give the AI? Picking the map? The game mode? And so on... At the moment I am mainly playing CMBS but I am sure this stuff is pretty universal in CM.

The below is something womble posted a few years back and I kept it in my notes for QB vs the AI.  It's been awhile since I played a QB vs AI but this is still valid AFAIK.  I paraphrased his original post below: 

You can, if you're picking AI forces yourself, mitigate the "putting units in inappropriate groups" problem by making sure there are enough formations in the force to have "some of everything" in each group. Rather than picking one Battalion "head", then chopping out everything but the AT platoon (4 guns) and a company (3 rifle platoons and a heavy platoon) of infantry, pick four Battalion headers and chop out everything but one AT gun, some Rifle squads and an MG or two from the Heavy Platoon for each Battalion. AFAICT, the AI assigns alternating Formations to the default 2 groups, and will leave one group empty if you just pick the one Formation. Or if you pick a Formation for infantry and another for Armour, you'll have all the Infantry in one setup zone, following one set of orders, and all the Armour elsewhere, operating according to a different timetable which probably won't support your infantry's route.

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45 minutes ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

So presumably picking two or more formations then adding Single Vehicles & Specialist Teams to each is the way forward in Engine 4? 

I think the multiple formations was the key.  Depending what is in the TOE of said formations and what you want in the QB you can add more single vehicles and special teams to those formations.  So sub units from four different battalions.  Of course the AI's C2 will probably not work very well between the battalions but for the AI having the appropriate forces on the map with all slots filled is probably more important.  I think :P.    

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On 15/01/2018 at 1:22 PM, ratdeath said:

Would be awesome if there is a one player option where you could send the file to a friend and they pick the AI force.

Maybe possible to let a friend (trustworthy) remote control with TeamViewer and pick the AI force.

I would prefer forces to be something that could be exported and imported as a separate file.  Eg you could have a bunch of saved XML forces created by yourself and third parties, that could be loaded into QBs.  These could be hosted on one of the repositories as eg  "6,000 point, 1944, mixed force, US Army".

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19 hours ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

How does the game handle multiple battalion radio networks, I've never looked into it (don't think I've ever played anything that big)?

This is the same situation as any scenario that has units from more than one battalion.  When the scenario has an infantry company from 1st Infantry Battalion and two platoons of tanks from 2nd Tank Battalion tasked with taking a crossroads etc.  There is no vertical C2 between the sub units of the two different battalions.  However there is horizontal information sharing.  The human player can facilitate the horizontal information sharing through the use of liaisons, and co-location of some HQs etc.  The AI controlled side in the scenario not so much.  But IMO I would rather the AI have the appropriate forces on the map with all slots filled by using the multiple battalion method as described above by womble.   

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Suddenly the need to establish secure local HQ locations becomes very clear doesn't it.....The more I see of these games the more I respect I have for the work that's gone into them. 

I fervently wish we had 'Persistent Map Damage' so that we could put the game engine's full power on show on a whopping campaign map, with proper scouting missions and so on.....IMHO it's the single engine tweak that the game needs most now (after the 'fleeing under fire' issue).

 

Edited by Sgt.Squarehead
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On 1/14/2018 at 2:06 PM, The_MonkeyKing said:

How big of an advantage to give the AI?

A rule of thumb that I've picked up from playing Slitherine's Pike&Shot / Sengoku Jidai / Field of Glory 2 at their hardest settings is to give the AI a 50% point advantage, on top of whatever advantage it is already getting for attacking etc. To achieve this in CM, I increase the AI's points by 70% when I'm defending [the AI is very vulnerable to ambushes if you can set up one where the map designer didn't expect it], and decrease my own points by 40% when I'm attacking. If I give the AI even more points, that tends to kick in the "quantity has a quality of its own" phenomenon. I have been able to win total victories in CMBS rolling with Abrams against Russians in poor visibility, when I had the full 60% penalty for my own force.

4 hours ago, StieliAlpha said:

you remember this ancient movie

I remember that ancient movie every time I play against the AI - it should be made obligatory for all wargamers. ;)

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