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Can't trust plotted paths at all !?


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11 minutes ago, Warts 'n' all said:

BFC have had years to sort this out. But it would appear that they couldn't be arsed. Maybe they should change their slogan from "Twenty years of wargaming excellence" to "A decade of wargaming excellence and a decade of cock ups". 

LOL, not sure this is that likely.  Also I wonder, having only recently started, which decade am I in?  The latter I assume but it doesn't really feel like it for me.  Hopefuly I'm not kissing too much butt here...

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3 hours ago, IanL said:

...The solution we really need is one of more of 1) show a no move cursor as you hover over gaps so you know and 2) have a better WISIWIG for gaps.

The stated request for a path preview is not likely easy (it requires full calculation of movement) and can turn out to be wrong too. Here is what I mean by it can be "wrong": movement in the game works by having a unit calculate the path to the next way point when it gets to the end of its current move order. This is important because units calculate their next movement path based on the reality at that moment not the reality at the beginning of the turn...

What about checking one chosen leg (through a gap) by incrementally stepping through that internal "reality at the moment" path?  If the game can do it at run time, why can't it do so on a limited scale at "verify" time?

I get that it can't do it in the same way as the terrain cursor, as that simply looks up the value of the terrain map at one point.  Lookup vs calculation.

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One thing also important to remember in reference to Ian's excellent advice for using engineers to blow gaps for vehicles - Give the blast order as a parallel line on the side of the wall your on that you want to breech for example  instead of through it putting waypoint on other side. Doing it this way assures a gap blown wide enough to get a vehicle through, and also prevents your engineers from running through the gap to the other side potentially into a kill zone.

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16 hours ago, weapon2010 said:

 one suggestion is to do a trial run in the same scenario against the ai , do a few tests, see how it turns out?, you don't like the results , dont do it , try another tactic, not a solution , but might alleviate some future pain

Except that in PBEM, one doesn't have the option of try n see. Otherwise in SP, for sure. I've certainly done some do-overs when just against the AI, but either way, that's really laborious compared to just having the system review the path when it's plotted

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1 hour ago, Vinnart said:

One thing also important to remember in reference to Ian's excellent advice for using engineers to blow gaps for vehicles - Give the blast order as a parallel line on the side of the wall your on that you want to breech for example  instead of through it putting waypoint on other side. Doing it this way assures a gap blown wide enough to get a vehicle through, and also prevents your engineers from running through the gap to the other side potentially into a kill zone.

Now that's an interesting insight, coz the game rules instruct one to plot the blast path through whatever it is one wants a hole in. So if you plot a path along the wall, hedgerow, etc., they still blow that hole?? Gonna have to test this out!

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9 minutes ago, RMM said:

Now that's an interesting insight, coz the game rules instruct one to plot the blast path through whatever it is one wants a hole in. So if you plot a path along the wall, hedgerow, etc., they still blow that hole?? Gonna have to test this out!

Vinnart is correct.  Altho' I think that if the building or wall is is a diagonal line, that sometimes doesn't work.  Also, be sure to split engineer squads into teams or they may use 2 charges.

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20 minutes ago, RMM said:

Except that in PBEM, one doesn't have the option of try n see. Otherwise in SP, for sure. I've certainly done some do-overs when just against the AI, but either way, that's really laborious compared to just having the system review the path when it's plotted

Shouldn't the quality team or creator of the scenario / map have "pathfinding" on the checklist before release??  I don't think the consumer should have to test.  

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20 hours ago, RMM said:

@IanL WISIWIG being what you see is what you get?

Yes, clearly there are some situations where it is not clear. I would prefer those questionable gap issues be fixed by them properly matching between if it looks big enough for a vehicle it is big enough for a vehicle.

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3 hours ago, Vinnart said:

Give the blast order as a parallel line on the side of the wall

Yes, a very useful method. I did not mention it to prevent to may regressions. Do note that if there are other blast targets adjacent to the same order the game may pick an unexpected choice. It does not happen very much but narrow bocage tracks or corners can sometimes force you to blast through so the game picks the right thing t blow up.

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12 minutes ago, IanL said:

Yes, clearly there are some situations where it is not clear. I would prefer those questionable gap issues be fixed by them properly matching between if it looks big enough for a vehicle it is big enough for a vehicle.

Absolutely amen!

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5 hours ago, eniced73 said:

Shouldn't the quality team or creator of the scenario / map have "pathfinding" on the checklist before release??  I don't think the consumer should have to test.  

In a perfect world, yes.  However bear in mind that once you lay down a data structure that can be edited by users, you can't change then that structure without throwing away all those user scenarios too.  To make a map with reliable "lookup" pathing may mean using a rather different structure which would break compatibility with the current one.  As many users would be up in arms about that, the best that can be done is some sort of computational method to test relevant path segments.  Which means probably not at the time of simply laying down paths, as there'd be quite a performance hit.

Maybe it could be done when there's a new game version, not just an engine version which maintains back-compatibility, but I'm not expecting that anytime soon.

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Walls are annoying. Tear down the wall! 

 

I remember Rainbow Six II and III have a great feature. it allows you to pre-run the plan (in a non-hostile environment ,replace all terrorists by dummies) before the action.

 

I hope the future CM would include the same feature. Of course people are going to complain that because with the other side shot back the result could be totally different.

but "No plan survives first contact".  

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On 4/2/2021 at 6:04 PM, Jabble said:

In a perfect world, yes.  However bear in mind that once you lay down a data structure that can be edited by users, you can't change then that structure without throwing away all those user scenarios too.  To make a map with reliable "lookup" pathing may mean using a rather different structure which would break compatibility with the current one.  As many users would be up in arms about that, the best that can be done is some sort of computational method to test relevant path segments.  Which means probably not at the time of simply laying down paths, as there'd be quite a performance hit.

Maybe it could be done when there's a new game version, not just an engine version which maintains back-compatibility, but I'm not expecting that anytime soon.

Not exactly sure what you are talking about.  What I am saying is that once said scenario or QB map is created the author would either test any possible "problem" areas by firing it up in the game or ask a couple volunteers to test out before releasing.  What I am saying is that if these scenarios are being play tested by the "QC" committee from BF then they should be doing the testing.  Yeah, sometimes things get missed but everyone knows pathfinding is an issue with this game and should be high up on the list of things "to check".  

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4 hours ago, eniced73 said:

Not exactly sure what you are talking about.  What I am saying is that once said scenario or QB map is created the author would either test any possible "problem" areas by firing it up in the game or ask a couple volunteers to test out before releasing.  What I am saying is that if these scenarios are being play tested by the "QC" committee from BF then they should be doing the testing.  Yeah, sometimes things get missed but everyone knows pathfinding is an issue with this game and should be high up on the list of things "to check".  

Ah, I didn't explain myself well. You're right when you say that pathfinding is an issue with this game, whereas with some other games it isn't.  That's to do with the underlying data structure which represents the map in the game.  Every such data strucuture has pros and cons - it's always a tradeoff - and a different structure that makes pathfinding easy would almost certainly make worse other aspects that are important to this game.  To change that underlying structure in an existing game (e.g. at an engine upgrade) would mean breaking direct back-compatibility, as all the old scenarios would have been built with the old one.  Just think how the new MS flight sim is completely incompatible with the old one (FSX) - the addons for one do not work in the other.

Hence we're likely stuck with the current model for the for the foreseeable future.  However that doesn't rule out engine enhancements to mitigate the issues, such as an iterative segment verification function, maybe.

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8 hours ago, Jabble said:

Ah, I didn't explain myself well. You're right when you say that pathfinding is an issue with this game, whereas with some other games it isn't.  That's to do with the underlying data structure which represents the map in the game.  Every such data strucuture has pros and cons - it's always a tradeoff - and a different structure that makes pathfinding easy would almost certainly make worse other aspects that are important to this game.  To change that underlying structure in an existing game (e.g. at an engine upgrade) would mean breaking direct back-compatibility, as all the old scenarios would have been built with the old one.  Just think how the new MS flight sim is completely incompatible with the old one (FSX) - the addons for one do not work in the other.

Hence we're likely stuck with the current model for the for the foreseeable future.  However that doesn't rule out engine enhancements to mitigate the issues, such as an iterative segment verification function, maybe.

Ha!  Thanks for that explanation but I pretty much knew that since I know this game better than my wife!!

Your misunderstanding that I am not asking to change the game.  My original response was to "players testing out scenarios for pathfinding issues".  I was just stating that I disagreed with that and that the QC guys are tasked with that.  We all know the shortcomings of the engine and when making a map or scenario the "pathfinding" point should be close to the top of the priority list.

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15 hours ago, eniced73 said:

Ha!  Thanks for that explanation but I pretty much knew that since I know this game better than my wife!!

Your misunderstanding that I am not asking to change the game.  My original response was to "players testing out scenarios for pathfinding issues".  I was just stating that I disagreed with that and that the QC guys are tasked with that.  We all know the shortcomings of the engine and when making a map or scenario the "pathfinding" point should be close to the top of the priority list.

Ah, I see what you mean - fair point!

I still have a suspicion that the nature of the map 'cells' means that if a tester finds any one path to be OK, moving one of the waypoints even by a single cell might mean the path becomes problematic, as the step-by-step calculation which tests for collisions would be different.  As such it's difficult to guarantee that any narrow point can be free of such problems, despite testing.  Hence it might be a worthwhile idea to allow players the ability to test a segment they've plotted themselves.

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The paths we see are pixel based the paths we plot are vectors. The two are always in conflict LOS plotting is also a vector when we think we should be able to hit you get no LOS jumping up. it is a game of probabilities aka rolling the dice. 

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9 minutes ago, chuckdyke said:

The paths we see are pixel based the paths we plot are vectors. The two are always in conflict LOS plotting is also a vector when we think we should be able to hit you get no LOS jumping up. it is a game of probabilities aka rolling the dice. 

The path endpoints are always tied to those pixels (or map cells), so the vectors are just the mathematical line between them.  As these cells are quite small, even a minor endpoint difference will result in a different vector which may make all the difference between squeezing through a gap and getting stuck.  The only way to reliably test against that in advance is to try all possible endpoint combinations, which is an impractical task.

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1 minute ago, Jabble said:

The only way to reliably test against that in advance is to try all possible endpoint combinations, which is an impractical task.

After playing with Photoshop since the 1990's I have a good idea of Vectors. Let me say CM is a little behind, we need something like a magnetic vector tool which would make pathfinding a breeze. 

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34 minutes ago, chuckdyke said:

After playing with Photoshop since the 1990's I have a good idea of Vectors. Let me say CM is a little behind, we need something like a magnetic vector tool which would make pathfinding a breeze. 

What's a magnetic vector tool?  I'm not a photoshopper.

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Just now, Jabble said:

How would that help with pathfinding?

You click on a road or a road tile, you would click on the beginning of the road and you click at the end or where you want to diverge. A magnetic vector tool will select your path without considering every bend. Somebody is already looking into it btw.  

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4 minutes ago, chuckdyke said:

You click on a road or a road tile, you would click on the beginning of the road and you click at the end or where you want to diverge. A magnetic vector tool will select your path without considering every bend. Somebody is already looking into it btw.  

I can't see how that would be useful in CM as we set all the waypoints on a blank canvas - it's not like a GPS automatically selecting a route from a set of fixed pathways.  A CM map doesn't consist of such fixed pathways.

For example, I want to drive across a field - I set the waypoints within that field.  I see a gateway to the next field, so I set a path through that gateway.  There are no fixed paths there, so nothing to diverge from.  The potential problem is that my path through the gateway collides with one side of it, forcing me to stop or manouevre awkwardly.

Many of us largely avoid travelling on roads in the game, as that's where ambushes tend to lie.

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