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What is the learning curve and what to do about it?


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20 years of CMx1 and CMx2 WWII (and other WWII) games also.

Of course, the UI looks completely identical which is a comfort, but I am sure that I have been thrown int the deep end of the pool.  (Despite that the same US voice actors are used, "Take a look at that!")

However does one get up to speed on modern combat tactics?

Any resources anyone would recommend?

Yes, I did play Steel Beasts back in the day, but it was a different animal.

Thank you!

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Some brief, unstructured thoughts:
 

Broadly speaking, ATGMs are like better versions of AT Guns. They're similarly hard to see, and they're countered by many of the same things (mortars and HE fire). They're a lot faster to set up and remove, so you can shoot and scoot with them, and probably should.

The increased lethality means that you do need to relocate more often. A revealed position can often come under effective mortar fire within 5 minutes (regardless of which side you're talking about). Some US formations with crack FOs and the right equipment can reduce that to more like 2.

With modern stuff in general, it's a lot more important to read the manual. The difference between no night vision, night vision, and thermal optics are huge, and it's not easy to see from the interface - you have to do some research to really understand it. The manual is a good place to start, and wikipedia is your friend.

C2 is significantly improved. Drones take this to a whole different level, especially in black sea, but information sharing is a lot more efficient. The empty battlefield will fill up with spotting contacts fast. This is the primary strength of the US Strykers.

Basic infantry and tank tactics remain the same across periods. Everyone's got better equipment, and increased firepower, but the fundamentals are identical. There's less margin for error in the modern titles, because a single chap with an AK can give a squad a bad day.

IFVs are a mixed bag. The broad concept of the BMP is that it's shifting a large proportion of the squad's firepower into the vehicle. That makes the squad's firepower and headcount fairly anaemic by itself, and coordinating well with an IFV is tough. The same applies to blue IFVs, but to a lesser extent. Pretty much everyone has transport of some kind.

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If you've been playing the WWII stuff for 20 years I don't think the learning curve will be very steep. IMO Shock Force 2 is easier than the WWII games because of the huge force imbalance, as long as you don't play as the Syrians of course. Some of the missions are like a turkey shoot for the U.S. military and it's possible to beat some of them while taking zero casualties. The Syrians can still give you a bloody nose if you're not careful though. ATGMs can be especially tricky to deal with. Some missions are harder than others of course, but in general I think it's easier than WWII, where the armies are more evenly matched.

As MikeyD already suggested, Usually Hapless has some very well-made videos on the modern games. The one he did on Stryker Battalions is good, and even though it uses Black Sea, it's just as applicable to SF2 because you will be using Strykers quite a lot.

 

 

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Okay, I am reading about the EW setting which is stealthy in QB settings (I suppose so that they could keep game engine settings the same) across games.

This QB setting impacts all scenario correct?

Also, it defaults to NONE.  At NONE, it is pretty much the same as the WWII titles?

Finally, what setting have players chosen and why?  BTW, I am playing my games at WARRIOR.

Thank you!

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On 9/19/2020 at 1:22 PM, markshot said:

20 years of CMx1 and CMx2 WWII (and other WWII) games also.

Of course, the UI looks completely identical which is a comfort, but I am sure that I have been thrown int the deep end of the pool.  (Despite that the same US voice actors are used, "Take a look at that!")

However does one get up to speed on modern combat tactics?

Any resources anyone would recommend?

Yes, I did play Steel Beasts back in the day, but it was a different animal.

Thank you!

What we always had drilled into us (my Army time covered this time period) is "If you can be seen, you can be hit. If you are hit, your are dead" The modern battlefield is an order of magnitude more lethal than WW2. 

Of course in SF2 you can be seen pretty easily, HOWEVER, there are many small folds and rises in the terrain and it's essential to make good use of those for covered approaches. They may know where you are but not be able to get a shot at you. Buildings can help the same way. Try to use them as cover. Hull down in ditches. Anything at all to take advantage of what the terrain provides you for cover. Concealment not so much due to the terrain, but covered approaches are a must.

Hope that helps.

Dave

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Online there's resources galore for old infantry small unit tactics manuals. If you look at  modern war squad tactics manuals you'll see they're pretty much the same as WWII manuals. Except for the enhanced ability to communicate and the enhanced ability to stand-off and apply force. An occupied building at a city intersection is still an occupied building at a city intersection. In modern war you could call up an Apache to put a missile into a window... unless your Apache gets shot down by an AA missile. Then its back to the old infantry tactics again.

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Maybe I was not clear.  I was not asking for about FOW settings.  I know what these do.

I was asking EW (electronic warfare) settings which although located in in the QB settings, the manual says they apply globally.

I got the impression that the default for CMSF2 effectively was a WWII world where most electronics delivered as expected (which was not strictly true).  Ranging to a modern World on a battle field after an EMP, and all you have is voice, visual, and runners for communications.

I was trying to determine what settings folks like and why?  (For example:  I don't play Iron Man in CM as I don't really enjoy not having a complete picture of my forces at hand.  My preference.)

But I am asking about EW and NOT FOW --- FOW I have decided on already.  Thanks.

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EW is an interesting item as few scenarios in CMSF or CMBS feature intense EW interference (or any EW at all). 

I hope you manage to create something with intense EW so we can see what effect that has.  I suspect that folks will be frustrated at the chaos it causes - but that will probably only be apparent if one plays on IRON and relies on C2 in order to do anything.

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Ah.  So, it applies to the given scenario.  I will have to check the manual again as I thought it was global.  Thanks.

MAX was effectively fighting with no comms.

I thought in Iraq and Afghanistan, the locals were using cell phones.  I suppose in a large enough operation, you could make sure the cell towers went down.

On the other end of the spectrum, I've heard of EMP.  Are there tactical EMP weapons or generators?

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EW is a feature which is not used very much. In MP, players usually prefer no EW so C2 works as it should. I have experimented in single player scenarios, but it is not clear how much of an impact it has on the AI other than the obvious effect on artillery/air support.

As to its use in RL, that is always hard to determine since a lot of RL EW work is classified. In Ukraine in 2014-15, it seems the Russian used it to jam Ukrainian comms. In the 2008 Georgian war, the Russian GLONASS system (their GPS) went down for a few days. Some speculated the U.S. was behind the shutdown, but never saw any evidence of that.  Even way back in the 2003 Iraq invasion, U.S. forces jammed and degraded the Iraqi comms network, although its is not clear how much effect that had on a CM level tactical battlefield.

So certainly all EW levels in the game would be realistic in 2017 (CMBS) and would be possible in 2008 (CMSF).

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55 minutes ago, markshot said:

Ah.  So, it applies to the given scenario.  I will have to check the manual again as I thought it was global.  Thanks.

MAX was effectively fighting with no comms.

I thought in Iraq and Afghanistan, the locals were using cell phones.  I suppose in a large enough operation, you could make sure the cell towers went down.

On the other end of the spectrum, I've heard of EMP.  Are there tactical EMP weapons or generators?

Not in Afghanistan in the early days - ICOM radios were the comms means of choice and they were still heavily used after the mobile phone network spread across the country in about 2007.  ICOM is still common today.

As to knocking off Telecom towers, the low tech Taliban method is to find the representative of the phone company and tell them they'll get a bullet through their head if they don't turn it off when directed to do so.  It is a very frequent occurrence and played quite a large part in disrupting the Presidential election in September last year.

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