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Why not a point to point LOS tool?


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For one thing, you would need to specify the height yourself of the observer. One of my annoyances with the waypoint+target is that it does not take into account final stance. You can order infantry squad to move to a place, and the on the final waypoint you check they have visibility. Problem is that visibility is checked from standing stance, but when they get their they go prone.

I mostly just move the camera around and gauge visibility using my screen. Unfortunately this is not good enough for infantry since the lowest the camera will go is around the height of a typical tank barrel. But for general use this is my preferred way.

Edited by Muzzleflash1990
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Point to point for what unit? By that I mean what height should the check be made at? I get that the current tool doesn't always use the height of the final position but mixing the heights of infantry and tanks would not make things more intuitive.

I honestly don't see what you are suggesting as more intuitive at all. The current system is very convenient and quite intuitive.

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On 4/23/2021 at 9:55 PM, Muzzleflash1990 said:

Unfortunately this is not good enough for infantry since the lowest the camera will go is around the height of a typical tank barrel.

I disagree. Go to 'Camera Position 1' after pressing the 'Tab Key'. In the case of a tank, you're directly positioned behind the tank. You use now the 'W-key' to move into the interior of the tank. You need to use the scroll wheel one notch or so to find the level of the gunner. Setting waypoints gives you an idea but don't rely on it. Only when a full contact icon pops up, you can shoot at it, otherwise area fire only. LOS doesn't mean that you have LOF. 

Edited by chuckdyke
grammar
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And of course, there is just simple the clear approach used by Graviteam where on the tool bar you could set the height of LOS POV from prone, kneeling, standing, and tank.

To anyone from BFC read (if reading), I am not knocking the game.  I am truly grateful that programmers and artist are making CM who probably have the skills/credentials to make more($) with broader titles or even as I did on Wall St. trading floors, but instead you are dedicated to your craft.  Salute!

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1 hour ago, markshot said:

Maybe it would be more intuitive it if it radiated from the point it was being measured.

Yes it definitely would be more intuitive for new players that way. I've seen it explained why it couldn't be done that way with CMx2 originally -- maybe someone has that link handy and could post it? But it's pretty obvious to most people that a point-to-point line of sight tool should have one end of the line emanating from the place on the map you're checking LOS FROM and the other end of the line terminating at the point you're checking LOS TO. It's hard to believe anyone would argue differently.

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9 hours ago, chuckdyke said:

I disagree. Go to 'Camera Position 1' after pressing the 'Tab Key'. In the case of a tank, you're directly positioned behind the tank. You use now the 'W-key' to move into the interior of the tank. You need to use the scroll wheel one notch or so to find the level of the gunner. Setting waypoints gives you an idea but don't rely on it. Only when a full contact icon pops up, you can shoot at it, otherwise area fire only. LOS doesn't mean that you have LOF. 

I know that LOS and LOF is not the same. But regardless in my game, you cannot lower the camera below the barrel of a tank gun (maybe 10 inches), but that is still very far from the crouching infantry height let alone prone.

THbovWM.png

It is not an uncommon for me to wonder whether infantry will have prone LOS/LOF from A to B when gentle slopes are present on either side. The waypoint LOS check often assumes standing and the camera does not go low enough. Often the only way is to commit to the order and wait and see.

I lived with the limitations for since CMBN, but there is room for improvement. And enabling the camera to go even lower is one of the possible solutions that does not require additional user interface commands or features. At worst, there may be certain terrain tiles where the camera might clip into the ground, but that can already be done with vehicles.

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7 hours ago, sttp said:

It's hard to believe anyone would argue differently.

I do, the possibility of a LOS doesn't mean you have it. I can just imagine the frustration of some people. What could be done have different settings for people who like to play RTS which could include your LOS tool. I am against it in the WeGo mode of play, Camera position 1 you can see your LOS but it doesn't mean it is also your LOF. CM is lightyears ahead in regard to Graviteam. A suppressed trooper sticking his face in the mud doesn't have an LOS CM takes all this into account. 

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Clipping terrain ...

Besides clipping through trees, you actually need to clip streams to see if there is a ford present; as unlike CMx1 there is no ford graphic.  If the camera get submersed you are not crossing without a snorkel and fins.

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Hey, in real life, what did they before GPS and when topo maps were not available?

I remember reading in Gettysburg, there were no maps, but each family proudly had the county framed in their homes, and officers were running into homes to get maps which only had building, roads, and land features; not topography.

Thanks.

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But why do you want such precision, unless for competitive-tournament type play (when your opponent would have the exact same advantage). Different strokes for different folks, I guess. When I’m out walking in the countryside/woods/whatever, I don’t know if I have LOS to that house over there from that little hump of an elevation with some trees on it 75 yards to my left. From here it looks like it does, but I won’t know until I get over there. Same for my pixeltruppen. I can recon with my eyes, the targeting tool, and with my P-truppen, but I don’t expect to know with precision ahead of time if when I get to a spot I actually have LOS or LOF.

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Posted (edited)

Granted perfect LOS from kneeling to a 3rd story window may be a bit much, but the tool makes up for weather, dust, fog, wheat ... stuff in real life which is obvious, but not in a game world.

Edited by markshot
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3 minutes ago, mjkerner said:

I can recon with my eyes, the targeting tool, and with my P-truppen,

I agree with you 100%, also there is the generic nature of the game LOS and LOF a fully identified target pops up. I honestly can't see where the problem is. 

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Spoiler Warning: These images are from August Morning, the smallest scenario in Black Sea.

So I wanted to setup a SBF position and this place looks suitable. I can't get my camera low enough.  But the waypoint LOS seems to be good. I can even see a bit down further into the valley than where the baddies are.

SeLCM6l.jpg

After they get there this is what I see

fnPrpfP.png

Forget about into partial into the valley, I cannot even see the house. And no they are not actually obeying the targeting command. Because they can't.

In CM you have to play the squad leader too. Except you can't hand place your MG gunner in the 8x8m action tile. Can you tell if it that location 75 yards away in real life affords visibility to a certain location? Perhaps not. Can you tell if the location 8m next to you do? Most likely. Could you do it slightly before arriving at your current action tile? Well too late in CM, you now have to shuffle tired around until you find the position or move fast and risk the danger. What about the setup phase? Currently you have *no* reliable way to determine if infantry can see a particular place unless they are above ground floor.

I am all for lowing the "precision" of the tools in CM. But the "accuracy" playing field needs to be fair. And right now they favor vehicles; not only that, it lies way more to infantry. I can place my camera at vehicle height and easily determine reliable vision from a location 75 yards or for that matter 1000 yards away without touching the Targeting command. If I had the choice to completely remove the LOS part of the targeting tool in exchange for allowing my camera to go prone I would take it.

Anyway. Doubt anything is going to change; if anything until engine version 5. And maybe it is my gripe. And it is fair to throw the "realism" card, my only counter will be that in real world you can be a bit more fluid as SL with positioning. And for my poor whataboutism arguments: looking at AAR and DAR it is quite common that people do infact keep pushing waypoints around for tanks several 100m away until they find that perfect keyhole positioning to target that just appeared threat well after the setup phase. A much greater atrocity IMO than trying to ensure an MG can essentially just see somewhat right from its next position. I don't even use area fire unless I have at least a faded contact marker.

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I stopped doing things like that a long time ago. My theory is that the computer tries to calculate to the lowest tile which is indeed out of sight. Icons pop up and the TacAI shoots at units where previously there was no LOS. Try to play with your TacAI making the decisions. I started to enjoy the game much more. I just use the POV position from Camera position 1.

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52 minutes ago, mjkerner said:

But why do you want such precision, unless for competitive-tournament type play (when your opponent would have the exact same advantage). Different strokes for different folks, I guess. When I’m out walking in the countryside/woods/whatever, I don’t know if I have LOS to that house over there from that little hump of an elevation with some trees on it 75 yards to my left. From here it looks like it does, but I won’t know until I get over there. Same for my pixeltruppen. I can recon with my eyes, the targeting tool, and with my P-truppen, but I don’t expect to know with precision ahead of time if when I get to a spot I actually have LOS or LOF.

Because in real life you're not ordering a squad to go to an action square. In real life you could order them to "go to the top of this hill, to whatever position will just barely give you direct line of sight to that building on the corner that 2nd platoon is taking fire from." That is why we need a good LOS tool. We in the game have to micro-manage, since we're the brains and eyes of every single team leader, squad leader, platoon commander, company commander, vehicle commander, etc., etc....

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1 hour ago, chuckdyke said:

Camera Position 1 plus one notch up with the mouse wheel puts you in the fighting compartment 2 Notches in the Commander Open Position.

I do this as well, but you do have to be very careful with it. Many graphical aspects of the game (the thickness of wooded areas, for example) are abstracted by the graphics engine, so what you see from that soldier's point of view may not reflect what he actually has line of sight to. 

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1 minute ago, sttp said:

so what you see from that soldier's point of view may not reflect what he actually has line of sight to. 

I agree with your statement, it just gives me an idea. The LOS tool my give you a no LOS sign for a position of hiding p-troopers, it will be a different story when they stand up. I rather use a POV position than the LOS tool. 

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The explanation from BF that the waypoints are only supposed to give an approximate idea of what may or may not be seen makes sense to me.  In RL countryside it's rare that one can guarantee that any location will enable one to see another location.  That vagueness is a challenge.  But the alternative would be to not enable any LOS from any waypoint - which would be the most realistic - one would have to eyeball from a location and hope that when the unit gets to that location it will see what the player can see.

With experience one gets a better "feel" for what a unit can and may not be able to see from a waypoint.  One shouldn't expect 100% god's eye view.  

A much bigger LOS/WYSIWYG problem is when one should be able to have a clear LOS like from one building down a street to another building, but one cannot get LOS to that 2nd building.  You can eyeball that all you like, and there is nothing in the way, so why can't the unit see or target that house?

Similarly, one can have dense woods protecting one's flank, impossible to eyeball/see through it.  And then BLAM! The AI finds a pixel-wide gap that only exists in programming and kills your tank(s).  It's ok when your unit does that to an enemy, but a PITA when it kills your units.

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8 hours ago, Erwin said:

And then BLAM! The AI finds a pixel-wide gap that only exists in programming and kills your tank(s).  It's ok when your unit does that to an enemy, but a PITA when it kills your units.

I agree: On the end of a turn, I was pleasantly surprised a Tiger brewed up. A 6-pounder ATG was the hero I forgot all about him. More experiences like that taught me to trust the TacAI more. Now I use a game of chess analogy. The Queen represents attrition the King maneuver, by maneuvering you will win the game. Go for positions occupy the right ones and the TacAI will do the right thing. My tip instead of waypoints check with a HQ unit where he can call indirect fire but don't go ahead with the direct fire. It is a good indication where to position your HMGs. 

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