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I know we've been over this ground before and I semi-apologise for bringing it up again, but it just really interests me.

(I thought about re-opening an old thread but they get so long...)

Anyway - I wanted to reiterate how impressed I am with the AI's ability to 'read' the map. Here are some screenshots.

 

1) Here are my super simple AI plans for static defence. I always give the AI several groups with different settings, but I don't usually put much thought into where it should set up - I let the AI make that decision and paint all over the map.

ai_groups_oux.jpg?dl=1

 

2) This is what the AI came up with for that map. This a typical example, by no means unusual or a fluke.

It has read the map, correctly ascertained the main vulnerabilities for an approaching force (exposed ground with limited cover), placed armour to threaten these in a well-sited spot, with its flanks covered, and placed infantry in good cover to defend against an attack on the armour.

screenshots_oux.jpg?dl=1

 

There are things I would like to see improved with the AI, but I think the above is very clever and well done. I get literally hours of fun by:

  • making up a map I like that I think is realistic;
  • choosing logical and challenging VPs and set-up zones;
  • and then just throwing together some AI plans that give maximum 'freedom of choice' to the AI.

Occasionally some of enemy forces are poorly placed (out of the fight usually), but never a high proportion of the enemy force and it never mars the game. Almost all the time, almost all the enemy force is very cleverly positioned.

The only caveat is that this works best for static defence, and I have had less success with AI plans that involve movement. However even these can work well if they are very general with wide parameters (such as the AI falling back at suitable intervals).

For a certain type of battle, this game has a really great AI :)

 

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6 hours ago, RepsolCBR said:

For the AIs sake...I hope you have no artillery 🤓...

:D

Well, we've only just come into contact, so I don't know what other surprises the AI has in store - but yeah, I get your point, the AI is not as responsive and for a top game, you have to place a few limitations on yourself that you wouldn't do for a human player.

Having said that - I don't give the AI pre-planned barrages - I let it choose its targets for itself, and it can be pretty good at that too...

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The Ai is generally pretty good at using mortars - they have fast response times compared to heavier artillery.

It also helps if AI has TRPs (though would depend on context of action if appropriate) and experienced FOs. Also helps if everyone is in good C2.

The AI won't do speculative fire - for that you'd need to use the AI Plan i.e. planned fires. In an ideal world be useful to have AI arty fire also being triggered by player units moving into an area, but for now we have to use workarounds.

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in this particular situation i was a bit more concerned about the wellfare of the AI troops... if you yourself (the player) had artillery avaliable...😎

I only looked at the pictures using my phone and using that it seems like the AI have bunced up rather nicely in the top left corner of the map...

Prime target for some death from above 🤠...

Imo if the AI is left full freedom to deploy its troops...it might not be the best....some limitations/help are desirable imo...

 

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5 minutes ago, RepsolCBR said:

I only looked at the pictures using my phone and using that it seems like the AI have bunced up rather nicely in the top left corner of the map...

As I said, this is first contact, so I don't know where else the AI troops are...

 

13 minutes ago, George MC said:

The AI won't do speculative fire - for that you'd need to use the AI Plan i.e. planned fires.

I do find the AI is excellent at short, heavy barrages if I leave my guys standing around for too long.

I find the AI pre-planned barrages just waste shells. It puts up a much better fight if you let it choose live targets.

 

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6 minutes ago, Freyberg said:

As I said, this is first contact, so I don't know where else the AI troops are...

 

I do find the AI is excellent at short, heavy barrages if I leave my guys standing around for too long.

I find the AI pre-planned barrages just waste shells. It puts up a much better fight if you let it choose live targets.

 

As when playing H2H if you can ensure the player is channelled (often easier said than done but good terrain recce!) into kill sack, gets pinned and then AI will spot the 'live' targets and pound em! The AI appears to be a bit tight at using heavier stuff in this regard (maybe because no-one stands round for long enough?) but most mortars and arty up to 75/76 seem used quickly and effectively by the AI on live targets.

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Heaps of what constitutes a "good" defense vs a "bad" defense is open to interpretation. People shouldn't get super hung up by doctrine because circumstances matter more. 

I've found that randomizing deploy areas for the AI can also serve to create a lot of excitement in scenarios they're attacking on Freyburg. It turns out you can in fact enable situations where the AI will be "good" at attacking as long as the player cannot easily predict where the attack will emerge from and as long as the attack is properly supported. Just like....reality lmao 

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5 hours ago, Freyberg said:

I find the AI pre-planned barrages just waste shells. It puts up a much better fight if you let it choose live targets.  

I have sometimes found that the AI pre-planned fires can be used to help channel the players advance.  A large caliber, maximum duration, light fire mission on a choke point can last 30+ minutes.  The choke point that is hit can also change with the AI plan.  So now the player has a choice, attempt to Fast through the barrage to refuse the channeling or go a different route that might lead to a fire sack.  Then the other choke points have on map mortars assigned to AI groups to trigger when the player enters (so yes fire sack):D.  All kinds of cool stuff to make battles interesting.      

Edited by MOS:96B2P
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8 minutes ago, MOS:96B2P said:

A large caliber, maximum duration, light fire mission on a choke point can last 30+ minutes.  

I also just like the ambiance of a heavy artillery barrage up ahead of my advancing units (not actually hitting them).  It's like telling the player, "Welcome to the war zone".    

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29 minutes ago, MOS:96B2P said:

Then the other choke points have on map mortars assigned to AI groups to trigger when the player enters (so yes fire sack):D.  All kinds of cool stuff to make battles interesting.      

Your devious bastard ! 😁

I really like the new possibilies with the mortar-areafire function...something that the AI has been missing for a long time...

16 minutes ago, MOS:96B2P said:

I also just like the ambiance of a heavy artillery barrage up ahead of my advancing units (not actually hitting them).  It's like telling the player, "Welcome to the war zone".    

I sometime use simular flavour added to the player side...AI artillery Shelling its own troops at the start of the scenario...

To simulate the final minutes of friendly prepartory barrage comming in...ordered by higher-ups...

Brings some nice flavour 💣...the only downside is that the shells can be seen comming from the wrong direction....If one are willing to look past that...it adds a nice touch 😊

Edited by RepsolCBR
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It'd be helpful if we could define what that "waste" is exactly. Heaps of fires were conducted for the express purpose of shutting down the enemy's movement or closing potential corridors. The Red Army really liked to use decoy barrages to mislead the Germans as to where the main axis of advance was going to emerge out of. Almost at all times some kind of slow harassment bombardment was going on somewhere. Arguably this is all "waste"-but only if we're defining wastage as failure to directly hit the enemy which does not seem to have been the objective a lot. 

Additionally I think a lot of players really low ball or underestimate just how much artillery was on 20th century battlefields and how much firing went on too. Those moonscaped fields, smashed cities, and denuded forests didn't make themselves...

Edited by SimpleSimon
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1 hour ago, SimpleSimon said:

Additionally I think a lot of players really low ball or underestimate just how much artillery was on 20th century battlefields and how much firing went on too. Those moonscaped fields, smashed cities, and denuded forests didn't make themselves...

1944, 45....A fully realistic russian break throuh assult on a german battalion possition....with priority artillery support.

What would such a barrage look like in CM ? 💀💀...

How many batteries would be required...pounding away at the same time...

My, my....quite a few i guessing.

 

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You guess right, although the Red Army didn't think of individual German positions really, they thought mainly of transiting from Point A to Point B and crushing absolutely whatever was unlucky enough to be right in their path. If we're talking about an offensive, and the given unit is priority movement, than we're talking a weight of shellfire support equivalent to raining freight trains. Nothing will be held in reserve, and the planned fires will be extremely comprehensive...although they will not have much left over to support the infantry once their movement commences. 

GHQ will provide the heaviest guns, 122mm A-19, 152mm M1937, and perhaps even 203mm B-4 gun howitzers. Generous allotments of spare 122mm M1938 guns will complement the Division's own section of those weapons plus the ZiS-3 built into Division equipment templates. 

The plan will be as follows, the heaviest guns will distribute their fire onto the locations of the map your infantry will later be conducting their movements right through. Where-ever you plan on placing a man in the next hour should be turned into moonscape first. Few gun-howitzers will be set aside for peripheral objectives but some can be used on suspected rear-area locations, roads, etc to suppress or destroy enemy headquarters assets and punish units trying to move into the map to reinforce the defenders. TRPs should be used liberally, especially for 2nd or 3rd phase fire plans to continue your advance. Lighter weapons such as the ZiS-3 will generally be set aside for suspected enemy positions on flanks to pin defenders and prevent them from repositioning. The idea of the suppression fires is not to kill Germans as much as it is to bind them to those locations and prevent them from thwarting your movements by reinforcing other sections of the defense or positioning to counter attack. It's totally reasonable for you to have the entire map covered in fire plans, although the heaviest fire plans should be used for where you actually plan on transiting. 

Your artillery plan is conducted purely on the grounds of *your* movement plan. Not what the Germans are up to. 

In return, very little will be left over for your use after the planning phase. Division and Corp HQ should not be used for Battalion directed "tactical" fire, they can be, but that's not an efficient use of their time. Enemy positions that survived initial bombardments are to be dealt with through Battalion and Division mortars, especially the 120mm PM-38 which a Rifle Division would have at least 24 of, and it would not be unreasonable to see all of them supporting *your* attack. X guns per square kilometer of front in the East were normally very thin, but that changed fast if an Offensive was planned, then that ratio changes to more like X guns per square meter  

It was fairly normal for entire Rifle Divisions to move through a 2km or even 700m section of front, just snowplowing straight ahead for miles until reaching their designated objective and stopping. No flanking attacks. No reserves. Just a straight advance in line with each subsequent Battalion, and Regiment following in line. Normally, a Rifle Division would not be prioritized for support unless they were Guards Rifles but if they happen to be The Chosen Ones today then the Stavka will be visiting their humble sector of the front with Biblical force. 

 

 

Edited by SimpleSimon
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On 11/25/2020 at 4:58 PM, MOS:96B2P said:

I have sometimes found that the AI pre-planned fires can be used to help channel the players advance.  A large caliber, maximum duration, light fire mission on a choke point can last 30+ minutes.  The choke point that is hit can also change with the AI plan.  So now the player has a choice, attempt to Fast through the barrage to refuse the channeling or go a different route that might lead to a fire sack.

How do you get that to work with AI control?

The longest I've managed to get a pre-planned fire to last was (IIRC) seven minutes.

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13 hours ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

How do you get that to work with AI control?

The longest I've managed to get a pre-planned fire to last was (IIRC) seven minutes.

As a example in CMRT a Soviet medium 122mm Gun battery using the AI assigned Target One set to suppress started to fire at 1300hrs and fired until 1343hrs.   

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On 11/26/2020 at 7:29 PM, Sgt.Squarehead said:

Artillery out of ammo?  Hard targets still to suppress?  :o

Just call 1-800-ISU:

main-qimg-543ac1b43dc99844698be6f135de34

 

 

All that is missing from this pic is a few 88mm penetration decals on the side of that "barn". 😁

The image reminds me of one of the default model splash screens for CMRT.

Edited by Blazing 88's
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34 minutes ago, Blazing 88's said:

All that is missing from this pic is a few 88mm penetration decals on the side of that "barn". 😁

If you are seeing the side something went wrong!  ;)

Glad you brought me back here, because shortly after I posted this:

On 11/27/2020 at 1:32 AM, Sgt.Squarehead said:

The longest I've managed to get a pre-planned fire to last was (IIRC) seven minutes.

I had a battery of DRA (CM:A) 122mm Howitzers fire for fifteen minutes on a painted AI Support Target 'Destroy' order.....I've never seen the like before!  :o

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