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How I view most scenarios and the designers...


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On 11/22/2018 at 12:13 AM, IanL said:

Most of the time CM games grind to the last broken platoon. In that context of gamey pushing of pixel troops to the breaking point I have no problem with there being a gamey clock that counter balances that.

My point is the game shouldn't be encouraging that type of behaiviour (QB's aside I guess...) particularly in scenarios which are trying to recreate historical or 'realistic' fictional scenarios. The "I won! See I took all the objectives... just don't mind the fact I've only got 20 guys left out of the 100 I started with." Sorting out VP's based on terrain but also unit based objectives can handle part of this, however the time parameters placed on the players also preconditions how a player approaches a CM scenario. If I've only got 45 minutes to find a victory I'm likely forced to push everything forward since I'll have no time on most maps to undertake recon and plan accordingly. This goes back to the OP's funny meme. :)

The creation of a time based victory condition would allow designers to factor in more time and reward players who achieve their objectives quickly if their intial plans worked as intended or they got around their opponents skillfully enough.

On 11/22/2018 at 12:13 AM, IanL said:

I should clarify my position a bit. I am not really advocating that time be the only thing on the defenders side and I am not against considering that a scenario's time is too short either. I took that strong position because so many people seemed to be piling on for - just make the times longer and longer and longer. So, there needed to be a counter point to the attacker is in charge and shall get everything they want. :D  I am advocating for time being a non trivial factor and part of the overall scenario. Anyone is free to point out they think any scenario has the time allocation wrong but expect that criticism to not be taken seriously without additional sentences to explain why following the tactical decisions you took you ran out of time but still had a viable path to accomplishing the objectives.

I think @Hemostat summed it up best further on with his post around CM having a tendancy for high casulty rates and players being risk averse. (Well some of us...) Players want to have time to spot the enemy, set up a strategy to engage and have enough time to reassess and re-engage as required. You can't do that in a scenario that lasts under an hour in most cases - and considering the maps seem to have been getting bigger with later releases.

One rule I took into 'Lions of Carpiquet' was looking at the historical time it took for the Canadians to clear out Carpiquet and the airfield. Take the northern approach, they launched the attack at 0630 hours and were still fighting for control of the village and airfield at around 1100 hours. This is an area of less than 4 square kilometers. If it was a stock scenario I'd be surprised if the player would have been given more than two hours to dig out an entrenched enemy. I ended up breaking it in two with a 'second attempt' possible later in the day which lined up closely with the arrival of 79th Armoured 'funnies.' However both scenarios, particuarly the first had a huge time allowance so the player was never felt rushed. Historically the engagement wasn't rushed, in no way should the player feel the same.

When I design scenarios I want them to be a challenge but the player should always feel they have a chance as they play through it. I don't mind players beating my scenarios.

By the way no foul with all this. You know I love ya work @IanL. :P

 

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6 hours ago, gundolf said:

But it doesn't cross my mind for CM WW2  -Stalin: Not one step back. Hitler:  Fight to the last bullet . Western Allies: Oh look *Omaha beach (sub in Dieppe for Canadians, Dunkirk for you know). I mean this is the time and place the mission came first, mission essential equipment came second, and somewhere down the pole came the general issue soldier. So if I can hasten the end of WW2 by pushing my squadies to attack, rally my broken squads to fire one more bullet, then scrounge a machine gun and run for the objective. I do it for the win!

Obviously officers wanted (and want) to push soldiers to fight as hard as they possibly can. But there's a point where they can't push the troops any more.

The broken state arrives quite late in CM, and you're still allowed/able to push broken troops to keep fighting. They can advance, and hold positions, and fire back to some extent. Sure, they tend to panic, but then you can rally them and send them back, again and again. That's where it starts to become unrealistic, I think.

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I dunno if thats been tweaked for CMBS, but if I get a unit broken it takes a loooong time to come back to even being able to move. Also, a broken unit is almost always down to its last guys, so it becomes gamey (for me) to, e.g., take a broken unit and try to claw a VP or two. I prefer to leave the shell shocked pixels alone.

This time issue (and it most certainly is one) seems to have several facets:

  1. It's driven by the Scenario Designer
  2. BFC "could" tweak it/improve it/expand it... but given their long, long, long list of TBDs I'd say it would end up on a sticky note stuck to the sole of Charles' shoe...
  3. So, it comes down to best practice by Designers in general
  4. Which means ...umm suck it up or design a Scenario ourselves :)

It could be useful to have a more explanatory and exploratory section in the Designer's manual about Time, as a specific Scenario Design concept - scenario length, rationales, historical precedents, comparisons of RL events v. correlated in-game Scenarios.

Essentially, some pointers/suggestions from BFC (via experienced SDs) as a PDF.

Other than that, I think we're always going to be rolling the dice each time we open a new, user made scenario...

 

 

 

 

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12 hours ago, Ithikial_AU said:

My point is the game shouldn't be encouraging that type of behaiviour (QB's aside I guess...) particularly in scenarios which are trying to recreate historical or 'realistic' fictional scenarios. The "I won! See I took all the objectives... just don't mind the fact I've only got 20 guys left out of the 100 I started with." Sorting out VP's based on terrain but also unit based objectives can handle part of this, however the time parameters placed on the players also preconditions how a player approaches a CM scenario. If I've only got 45 minutes to find a victory I'm likely forced to push everything forward since I'll have no time on most maps to undertake recon and plan accordingly. This goes back to the OP's funny meme. :)

The creation of a time based victory condition would allow designers to factor in more time and reward players who achieve their objectives quickly if their intial plans worked as intended or they got around their opponents skillfully enough.

I agree we shouldn't be encouraging that behaviour either. With that in mind I have a question. How would you feel if you got to the end of a large grinding battle that you managed to get all the objectives but with only 20 guys left only to find that you lost or were left with a draw? Serious question.

I am thinking of what the game's current victory conditions can do. I am not thinking about enhancements to the system. Those are fair to ask for but I'm just thinking what can we do *now* that will make things better. Here is what I am theorizing:

An attack scenario with lots of time. The defender does not get penalized for casulties but the attacker does - a lot. So if the attacker "wins" (gets the objectives) but suffers 60% casualties the defender gets a bonus big enough that they get a draw. If the defender manages to do that with less than 50% casualties the defender wins regardless of what objectives they hold. These are just off the top of my head thoughts so refinement would be needed. The goal is to create a scenario where time does not matter to the defender winning so your time constraints are effectively gone but you can accomplish your territory goals and still lose the game.

Would people find that satisfying? Thoughts, critique please.

12 hours ago, Ithikial_AU said:

By the way no foul with all this. You know I love ya work @IanL. :P

No worries - much of this is an interesting discussion. Very kind of you considering my offerings are small and few. I am far from a top tier designer and I have never done anything big - yet.

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IanL

That sounds like a winner to me, a great method for setting victory conditions.

No matter how you look at it, the attacker in the game given enough time has a great advantage, thus the reason many designers create a short time to force the attacker into a sloppy attack that if incorrect choices are made, they have to stay with them because there is not enough time to adjust.

but like your suggestion, there is other settings that can be used to provide plenty of time and still give the defense a way to win.

So a good suggestion as to how to create some battles that give those that want time removed from the victory settings as a way of doing it.

But I do like to point out for those that hate tight time limits and think its unrealistic (they are wrong).

Yes the game is played in all aspects in a somewhat unrealistic compressed time frame. ( but In any real battle  where the opponent can get reinforcements or adjust units or reorganize if given time. The commander of the forces is always fighting to act as quickly as possible, to not allow the opponent the time to respond and to keep the advantage he has even if it might not be the cleanest approach. To seize the advantage and to push the advantage before the enemy has time to recover.

So not wanting to deal with time is a somewhat unrealistic approach except for some types of situations. Like many things we see presently in conflicts in the world today. (Where a powerful Nato force is against an ill equipped and trained force, where time does little to providing them with any added force or aid or any additional abilities) in such a situation, cutting such a force off, taking care to preserve life and to remove the threat as cleanly as possible all makes sense.

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I recently read a US 'lessons learned' report from the North Africa campaign. I don't have it in front of me but two conclusions stuck out. The general penning the report said that Americans were too much into the cult of 'speed', relying on swift movement while giving short shrift to proper reconnoitering, then getting themselves into trouble as a result. Another point was that Americans were not sufficiently willing to make sacrifices (in blood, he meant) to accomplish the mission. Those conclusions can be scaled down to CM gameplay. We're expected to charge headlong into a built-up area, but if we take casualties about 15% we consider it a 'loss' regardless of the outcome.

 

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1 hour ago, MikeyD said:

I recently read a US 'lessons learned' report from the North Africa campaign. I don't have it in front of me but two conclusions stuck out. The general penning the report said that Americans were too much into the cult of 'speed', relying on swift movement while giving short shrift to proper reconnoitering, then getting themselves into trouble as a result. Another point was that Americans were not sufficiently willing to make sacrifices (in blood, he meant) to accomplish the mission. Those conclusions can be scaled down to CM gameplay. We're expected to charge headlong into a built-up area, but if we take casualties about 15% we consider it a 'loss' regardless of the outcome.

 

Interesting. I'm working on a Huge Tunisian map with a focus on Sidi Bou Zid  Valentine's Day '43... A thing of high desert beauty. I just love the time and place

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4 hours ago, IanL said:

The defender does not get penalized for casulties but the attacker does - a lot. So if the attacker "wins" (gets the objectives) but suffers 60% casualties the defender gets a bonus big enough that they get a draw

This was pretty much the way nearly all CMSF1 missions worked.  One learned to win with very few if any casualties and that what was what made the scenario challenging (when normally one may have a big force advantage as Blue).   

The WW2 era CM2 games were a shock as they all seemed to be bloodbaths.

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There actually is another time factor that some may consider.  For players who prefer to play head to head games most players seem to prefer playing scenarios with shorter time lengths to scenarios with longer time lengths.  I assume that's because of how long it takes to complete a game head to head and so the longer the scenario length is the fewer people will tend to play it head to head.  Other players who play against the AI may also prefer shorter length scenarios because they simply don't have the time available to play something for two hours or more.  So the designer may think that four hours is the perfect amount of time for the scenario that they are designing, but when players see that four hour time limit they immediately think 'nope, too long' and skip it because the length of time given is a factor in whether or not players choose to play something.  Number of units is another factor of course, and many of the longer scenarios are also some of the larger ones in terms of forces involved, but that isn't always the case.  In most cases the map size should probably dictate the game length and if a WW2 infantry soldier can't walk to every objective area with a few minutes for fighting tossed in then the scenario length is too short.  Modern scenarios can have shorter time lengths than the WW2 ones since everyone is typically vehicle mounted and vehicles shrink map sizes for access purposes.  

Now some players who choose the shorter time length scenario may wish that they had more time when they are in the middle of playing said scenario, but at the same time those same players may have been using that shorter time as a basis for choosing that scenario in the first place.  That's why I have only exceeded two hours one time for any scenario I've ever created.  Longer times will scare players off from even looking at something in many cases simply because of the perceived investment of time the player thinks he has to make in order to play the scenario even though a longer length scenario doesn't necessarily need to 'go the distance' in order for a winner to be decided.

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9 hours ago, IanL said:

I agree we shouldn't be encouraging that behaviour either. With that in mind I have a question. How would you feel if you got to the end of a large grinding battle that you managed to get all the objectives but with only 20 guys left only to find that you lost or were left with a draw? Serious question.

I'd have no problem with that proposition what sover in the vast majority of circumstances. Combat Mission is a complex wargame, not an bog standard RTS like StarCraft where the objective for determining victory are pretty dry cut. There maybe the odd case where a narrative is laid out in a CM scenario where the objectives must be taken no matter the cost but it would be the exception rather than the rule. Receiving a Total Victory would suggest your forces are ready to carry on with further operations. If you take all your objectives but ruin your forces in the process the degree of victory should ideally probably reflect that.

I've certainly had cases where it's gone the other way at times when I've fought the long hard slog, struggled to reach my objectives and my forces have taken a battering, only to be rewarded with an AAR saying 'Total Victory.' The first reaction I have is that "It certainly didn't feel like it!" There's probably a few cases where that's happened where I've been recording you TouTube. :P

Actually.... (sorry putting the economist/analyst hat on now), we can probably measure this if there's a decent number of people out there using my little Excel data tool. That records casualties/casulty rates agaist the degree of victory. I just know from my own results that the number of times I've received a "Total Victory" is my greatest number of results, even though I know in quite a number of those it's been a virtual bloodbath on my side.

9 hours ago, IanL said:

I am thinking of what the game's current victory conditions can do. I am not thinking about enhancements to the system. Those are fair to ask for but I'm just thinking what can we do *now* that will make things better. Here is what I am theorizing:

An attack scenario with lots of time. The defender does not get penalized for casulties but the attacker does - a lot. So if the attacker "wins" (gets the objectives) but suffers 60% casualties the defender gets a bonus big enough that they get a draw. If the defender manages to do that with less than 50% casualties the defender wins regardless of what objectives they hold. These are just off the top of my head thoughts so refinement would be needed. The goal is to create a scenario where time does not matter to the defender winning so your time constraints are effectively gone but you can accomplish your territory goals and still lose the game.

Would people find that satisfying? Thoughts, critique please.

IIRC thats effectively what was done with the original CMSF Blue Force campaigns and scenarios. They all had very harsh penalities on losing more than 10 - 20% of your forces if I remember correctly. This type of victory condition was sort of required to actually balance out the scenarios where only one side receives all the 'toys.' If you didn't force the Blue Force player to slow down in some what they could steam roll most Syrian opponents.

Are you aware of this little tool I created years ago to test out combinations of victory point allocations? Pretty much allows you to test out what you proposing... just without the many hours of work within the game itself.

http://cmmodsiii.greenasjade.net/?p=4236

As flagged previously, in my opinion at least, I think these are the better CM scenarios and helps reflect a better wargame experience that wargamers are after. CM has always been about realism (I'm sure there's a post or two floating around here from Steve on that point). This is particularly the case for larger maps that give players a lot more options to consider in how to tackle the problems in front of them. Having every unit modelled in detail to simulate a WW2 or modern era engagement can be let down if there's mission design that allows for, or worse, forces players to fight the engagement in a very unrealistic matter (such as with very restrictive time limts preventing proper recon etc).

But yes at times we just want to jump into the editor, line up some King Tigers and IS-2's, and grab the popcorn.

5 hours ago, MarkEzra said:

Interesting. I'm working on a Huge Tunisian map with a focus on Sidi Bou Zid  Valentine's Day '43... A thing of high desert beauty. I just love the time and place

You didn't accidently let a cat out of the bag there did you? Or is this just a side passion project inside CMFI? (Sorry I'm a part of that CM: North Africa fan club). :)

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Quite aside from CM:AK existing previously, 1943 North Africa would seem to be the obvious next step for a WW2 title, and would dovetail nicely into 1943 Eastern front with the ability to share assets with both, and CMFI, and work backwards. Involving the French might allow for the same to apply for 1940 France eventually as well.

 

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4 hours ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

For some reason I just don't get WWII desert warfare, on the other hand I love CM:SF.  :unsure:

It seems many feel like that...  and it is very strange cognitive dissonance.  To me CMAK would be like CMSF2 with WW2 era units.   Brilliant.  What's not to like?

Edited by Erwin
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8 hours ago, domfluff said:

1943 North Africa would seem to be the obvious next step for a WW2 title, and would dovetail nicely into 1943 Eastern front with the ability to share assets with both, and CMFI, and work backwards. Involving the French might allow for the same to apply for 1940 France eventually as well.  

YES!!! This.  +1

Edited by MOS:96B2P
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On ‎11‎/‎27‎/‎2018 at 11:49 AM, Sgt.Squarehead said:

Sand, sand, nothing but sand.....:P

For some reason I just don't get WWII desert warfare, on the other hand I love CM:SF.  :unsure:

I suppose if we could model LRDG/SAS out of the box I might have a change of heart.  ;)

But it would be as dull as ditch water - there was a thread somewhere else on this forum about adding elite units about a year ago which got stopped dead in its tracks when I pointed out that once they got all of these lovely Gucci units how would they use them in the game? I went on to point out that the missions involving these underwater knife fighting ninja types would be rinse and repeat affairs - how many airfield raids can you do before you get bored rigid? Even more constricting is the absence of aircraft in CM to actually blow up on the ground. I appreciate that BFC could add these later on down the track but you're still looking at:

  • Sneak onto an airfield, blow sh1t up and run away.
  • Race onto an airfield in a couple of jeeps, brass sh1t up and run away.

Now I appreciate there is more to SAS and LRDG ops than airfield raids, but I just don't think they make interesting CM missions because it is essentially:

  • Avoid getting spotted before getting to the target/the target arrival.
  • Blaze away for a couple of minutes to whack the target.
  • Exfiltrate without getting caught/killed.

I know it is a bit rich saying that because I did the Operation Neptune Spear scenario in CMSF which worked on exactly that premise and yes people seemed to have enjoyed it but I think it worked for three reasons:

  • Not many people were cranking out CMSF content at the time.
  • The Osama Bin Laden thing.
  • There weren't too many good scenarios of that type for the game.

I have recently looked at doing an SAS Northern Europe campaign but then I read some SAS war diaries for one of those operations and it was depressingly uninspiring … brass up some rear echelon types in a village, ambush a convoy, blow something up, gather intelligence on a target and call in an airstrike. Ultimately followed by avoid getting captured in a security sweep. When you consider that they'd insert as a formed body and then split into teams of four dudes with each team going to a defined and dispersed geographical area then each individual mission hinges on those four dudes surviving. That is difficult to pull off in CM scenario design and make the thing both playable and enjoyable because a team only has to be spotted by an SMG toting German type and its mission over.

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On the face of it I'd generally agree, but I still believe that with careful design any of the scenario concepts presented above could still be made into an enjoyable mission.....Let's face it, most missions at their core amount to little more than 'Go Here & Kill Everyone', but it doesn't stop them from being fun.  ;)

Do you recall me building that ODA Team Core a while back?  I designed a few mini-scenarios for it (basic scripting on reused maps as proof of concept, nothing coherent) but I reckon it has some potential and will try similar experiments in the new game, where I will have better control of the AI and so on.  

In the majority of these designs the ODA Team is accompanied by local forces, thus minimising the 'One man with a SMG factor', I'm sure the same could be done with local French forces for your SAS in NWE concept (if BF were to give us WWII Uncons).....Sure it may not always be 100% accurate, but if a little bending of reality gives us a series of novel and entertaining scenarios, is that such a terrible thing?

Edited by Sgt.Squarehead
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14 minutes ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

On the face of it I'd generally agree, but I still believe that with careful design any of the scenario concepts presented above could still be made into an enjoyable mission.....Let's face it, most missions at their core amount to little more than 'Go Here & Kill Everyone', but it doesn't stop them from being fun.  ;)

Do you recall me building that ODA Team Core a while back?  I designed a few mini-scenarios for it (basic scripting on reused maps as proof of concept, nothing coherent) but I reckon it has some potential and will try similar experiments in the new game, where I will have better control of the AI and so on.  

In the majority of these designs the ODA Team is accompanied by local forces, thus minimising the 'One man with a SMG factor', I'm sure the same could be done with local French forces for your SAS in NWE concept (if BF were to give us WWII Uncons).....Sure it may not always be 100% accurate, but if a little bending of reality gives us a series of novel and entertaining scenarios, is that such a terrible thing?

Ok so its not a terrible thing but then we don't have to do the work. Steve and Charles have to do all of that coding stuff to bring them into the game for probably very little return. Since you mention the maquisards/partisans which I know are an oft repeated request, the same applies. They have limited utility in a WW2 title because the actions that they are optimised to conduct are raids/ambushes and are invariably forced into avoiding capture in security sweep operations. You can only do that so many times before it becomes boring. There's a campaign in it for sure but single missions without that campaign context will be limited for the reasons already stated.

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TBH my personal preference for WWII Uncons would be eastern front Partisans, I've often felt that CM:RT only covers part of Opertaion Bagration, Partisan activity during that offensive was on a truly massive scale.

If they can be added to the game simply I'd love to have them, but I'm surely not going to be nagging for them as I now have CM:SF2 to satisfy my Uncon warfare desires. 

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2 minutes ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

TBH my personal preference for WWII Uncons would be eastern front Partisans, I've often felt that CM:RT only covers part of Opertaion Bagration, Partisan activity during that offensive was on a truly massive scale.

If they can be added to the game simply I'd love to have them, but I'm surely not going to be nagging for them as I now have CM:SF2 to satisfy my Uncon warfare desires. 

Yes I should have used the 'western and Italian front' caveat. I think there is more scope in the east if for no other reason than you can do the Warsaw uprising. Of course there was still a lot of hiding and avoiding security sweeps in the Pripyat marshes going on there which goes back to my original point although of course the scale is a lot different. Even then though, how much fun are those missions which require lots of sneaking around a map composed mostly of trees? I mean you can do that now ...

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On 11/24/2018 at 4:50 PM, Erwin said:

This temptation is understandable.  But, my experience is that one learns more and faster by overcoming one's shock, readjusting one's plans and keeping on going with what forces one still has - like one would have to do in RL.  

Generally I save every 5 turns and restart the previous save when the game system does something really dumb/unrealistic and one loses something cos of "design/system error" rather that one's own mistakes - eg when a doorway turns out to not work and the unit runs out to the street to be massacred instead...

 

I only reload when catastrophe strikes and it is clear I do not have a reasonable chance of accomplishing my objectives. Most of the time I learn at this point that I have made an error in judgement accounting for the issue. It is a learning curve. This is what keeps me coming back.

My point was that the casualty rate SEEMS at times to be extraordinarily high in situations where units would be taking cover. I am not an expert and I do not wish to make my casualty aversion an issue about the game design. It is what it is and I love Combat Mission.

I appreciate your comments,

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1 hour ago, Combatintman said:

Even then though, how much fun are those missions which require lots of sneaking around a map composed mostly of trees? I mean you can do that now ...

To be fair this is the crux of the matter.....Execution is everything IMHO.  The premise behind some of the best scenarios can be pretty simple as I said earlier, but the way the designer forces you to interact with the terrain, enemy units and so on are what create the immersion. 

This is why I'm so particular about internal building layout and so on.....If you can get the player to thoroughly examine the terrain in order to pick their way through alleyways (or forests), point to point, your work on 'terrain immersion' is largely done.

Edited by Sgt.Squarehead
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1 hour ago, Combatintman said:

But it would be as dull as ditch water - there was a thread somewhere else on this forum about adding elite units about a year ago which got stopped dead in its tracks when I pointed out that once they got all of these lovely Gucci units how would they use them in the game? I went on to point out that the missions involving these underwater knife fighting ninja types would be rinse and repeat affairs - how many airfield raids can you do before you get bored rigid? Even more constricting is the absence of aircraft in CM to actually blow up on the ground. I appreciate that BFC could add these later on down the track but you're still looking at:

  • Sneak onto an airfield, blow sh1t up and run away.
  • Race onto an airfield in a couple of jeeps, brass sh1t up and run away.

Now I appreciate there is more to SAS and LRDG ops than airfield raids, but I just don't think they make interesting CM missions because it is essentially:

  • Avoid getting spotted before getting to the target/the target arrival.
  • Blaze away for a couple of minutes to whack the target.
  • Exfiltrate without getting caught/killed.

I know it is a bit rich saying that because I did the Operation Neptune Spear scenario in CMSF which worked on exactly that premise and yes people seemed to have enjoyed it but I think it worked for three reasons:

  • Not many people were cranking out CMSF content at the time.
  • The Osama Bin Laden thing.
  • There weren't too many good scenarios of that type for the game.

I have recently looked at doing an SAS Northern Europe campaign but then I read some SAS war diaries for one of those operations and it was depressingly uninspiring … brass up some rear echelon types in a village, ambush a convoy, blow something up, gather intelligence on a target and call in an airstrike. Ultimately followed by avoid getting captured in a security sweep. When you consider that they'd insert as a formed body and then split into teams of four dudes with each team going to a defined and dispersed geographical area then each individual mission hinges on those four dudes surviving. That is difficult to pull off in CM scenario design and make the thing both playable and enjoyable because a team only has to be spotted by an SMG toting German type and its mission over.

 

I agree with you totally as to your view of these types of request and as to how well they would work as to creating new scenarios and content.

I like to play around with the editor myself and am always looking for different types of tactical situations to set up.

So I have found it possible to set up pretty much any of these types of missions to some extent.

Now did I find these interesting - yes.

Did I find it hard to get the game set up to mimic realistic results from real life events. (very hard at times, but generally it was possible)

Would many of these battles make a good scenario. No - seldom and getting victory conditions that make it a challenge and possible victory for both sides  is really a hard task to achieve.

 

 

Personally, I think the magic to scenario design and battle building is looking for ways to create and reflect different battles and somehow show or reflect a direct challenge in that situation. There really is no one type of design that is better than others, so when people ask for scenarios be designed a certain way, I see that as their preference, likely because it matches their style of game play. But I don't think designers should think they need to restrict themselves to such request.

 

I do think designers should stretch themselves and try to create unusual battles, just for the sake of providing distinct tactical situations. As for having the game model the units for those limited situations, its not a good usage of the companies time. 

But the game can do it,  I wish I had the time where I could provide some quality scenarios in some of these type of situations. But I find I don't have the time or desire to do it.

 

But anyone who own the game can learn to create their own wishes with some effort. and when you are doing it for yourself, it takes much less time. because there is so much more that does not need to be done to meet expectations of a scenarios to release to others. I find I can create a map and get troop types to reflect what I want pretty easily. I don't care if the troops don't look correct or wear the right clothing, I care about their setting so they act appropriate for the abilities that I think they have. I don't need to worry about AI limits or programming it. I either play both sides or I find someone to play one side and off we go.

The game is a excellent tool for reflecting combat - learn to use the tool and you don't need to hope others provide you the battles you want to play, its within reach of your own finger tips

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On 11/26/2018 at 4:37 PM, MikeyD said:

I recently read a US 'lessons learned' report from the North Africa campaign. I don't have it in front of me but two conclusions stuck out. The general penning the report said that Americans were too much into the cult of 'speed', relying on swift movement while giving short shrift to proper reconnoitering, then getting themselves into trouble as a result. Another point was that Americans were not sufficiently willing to make sacrifices (in blood, he meant) to accomplish the mission. Those conclusions can be scaled down to CM gameplay. We're expected to charge headlong into a built-up area, but if we take casualties about 15% we consider it a 'loss' regardless of the outcome.

 

The US Army could not stomach the same kind of body counts that were common on the Ostfront or even in China-Burma because of the precarious nature of the Grand Alliance and because it was fighting on the behalf of a Democracy, and was accountable to public opinion of the war. Americans were deeply skeptical of the "Germany First" strategy, which seemed an awful lot like a British ploy to get someone else to fight their war. The American public also deeply resented both the draft and the accompanying rations of raw materials and luxury foods like meat and dairy, even though this rationing was nowhere near as severe as in Britain or Germany. Despite all the "rah rah Pearl Harbor" bluster of the recruitment drives the fact is the American public's interest in the war was distant and its motivation to prosecute it minimal. The United States was directly threatened by precisely none of the Axis powers, and the public thought and cared little for the consequences of an Axis victory. American men in arms were seen as and saw themselves as "Citizen Soldiers", civilians in uniform, who were doing the Army and the Allies a big favor by being present at all. As a result, American strategy had to operate with great prudence because a "Stalingrad on the Rhine" would've been a completely unacceptable outcome for Roosevelt's administration and might well have reversed American commitment to the "Germany First" strategy agreed upon. 

As a result, American Generals and Commanders were perceived to be operating under an excessive caution when really they were left little choice in how they fought by Washington. German Generals often noted the seemingly bizarre tendency of American Divisions to advance "one Brigade at a time" when really what the Americans were doing was just compartmentalizing their attacks so that a setback didn't turn into a major disaster. Nobody wanted to be the guy who lost a Company or a Regiment or God forbid a Division because the fact was right after they pinned the Medal on your chest for all that brave sacrifice you'd still be George Pickett in 1944. If your career has been in the US military and you planned on retiring from the US military than you did not want to be him. 

Inversely, the US Army's special formations, its Armored Divisions, Combat Commands, and its much celebrated Airborne all tended to be very motivated and aggressive, to the point where they were almost dangerously reckless. The 82nd and 101st narrowly dodged total annihilation on more than one occasion and the Armored Divisions were notorious for leaving trails of knocked out Shermans up single highways (which Belton Cooper seized upon to claim in his book that the Sherman was a bad tank, and not just that American Armored Divisions were doing a bad job trying to ape the Blitzkrieg). 

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