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So you just got your hands on CMCW...now what? Designers Q&A thread.


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Q & A:

That M113 engineer variant with the circular turret armor:
I am under the impression that the M2 cannot be manned by the passengers in the rear. Is this working as intended?

Best regards,
Thomm

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Posted (edited)
On 5/2/2021 at 7:10 PM, Artkin said:

This is how we have ALWAYS done it.

You should maybe ask yourself if converting maps between games is what BFC intended when they made the games. If it was, they would have given us a converter for that.

The fact that those who convert maps are using a third party application should probably make you understand that BFC might allow it but doesn't really support it.

Edited by BornGinger
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If you put motivation and especially fitness way down, you'll get very close to the tactical effect of fighting in an NBC environment, even more so if you put visibility way down as well.

I'm fully expecting an NBC gear mod to come out at some point too.

Not that it isn't a reasonable question - it's definitely a choice, and something that would be interesting to hear discussed.

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49 minutes ago, KungFuTreachery said:

I noticed that mention of chemical warfare is conspicuously absent even in the campaign briefings - did you ever consider trying to model CW in the game, or was it too much work for too little payoff? 

Ah, so we have been expecting the "NBCD Question".  Yes, we did look at it in detail and the decision to leave it out was a conscious one.  We knew some would disagree but hear me out:

- Nukes.  Ok let's just put that one to bed.  We have a beta tester who was in the "nuclear artillery" in the time period and the smallest strike would wipe out our largest maps, so not real point in modeling this as there is already a ceasefire/surrender option in the game.

- As much fun as it would be to drop a nerve gas salvo on the enemy and watch them squirm (I think inside all of us is that kid with the magnifying glass and the anthill) this is highly inaccurate use of these weapons in context of the game.  At a minimum chemical warfare was controlled and used at the operational level or higher due to the whole escalation dynamics.  So in game it really becomes an environmental factor much like weather or EW as opposed to a tactical weapon system (i.e. it is highly unrealistic for a Bn CO - the main rank of players in the game - to have control of chemical rounds.)

- So that fact really impacts the whole cost/benefit equation for the feature, we prioritized new features that the player can actually employ (e.g. ICMs).  So as an environmental factor, unlike rain or fog, chemical warfare was basically invisible beyond the initial drops, which look like smoke rounds.  So modeling smoke rounds outside of the players control, who then has to live with the effects is starting to sound shaky.

- So what does chemical warfare do.  Well it puts everyone in TOPP/MOPP whatever, so there are now uniform modeling efforts which are not small.  Then play-wise it slows everything down.  All infantry take a serious movement, morale and fatigue hit (which as has been noted the player can already model), vehicles are fully buttoned so spotting goes down.  And probably most importantly logistics take a serious hit, which was the actual main point of chemical warfare, strain operational logistics.  [Aside: this was over 60 years after Ypres, so no one was expecting magic breakthroughs, that is what the nukes were for].  So now supplies may run low and medivac becomes a nightmare.  Interesting but who does that really effect the 90 mins of a CM Battle in any better way than what we already have?

- So now we have a significant amount of work to essentially take decisions out of the players hands.  Play would risk slowing to a drag, which really goes against the fun factor.  And, if a scenario designer really wants to, they can already simulate some of this in the current game. 

So at the end of the day, even though we knew many players had been talking about this feature and it is likely that chemical warfare would have been employed, the effort was simply not worth the potential gains to in-game experience.   We needed to put it on the shelf right next to real-time area denial through flooding and psyops as all really cool and realistic stuff but simply not worth the level of effort to implement while a lot of other priorities existed.

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Yep and as I said there - you want to play it that way - stick on a COVID mask, stick on a diving mask, wear a pair of thin cotton gloves and a pair of rubber kitchen gloves over the top of those.  Set all your troops to fatigued, knock their leadership levels down to -2, their morale down to no more than normal and their skill levels to the lowest setting.  Now play your game in NBC mode.  When you've worked out how utterly joyless that is as an experience you can probably work out why there wasn't a huge amount of enthusiasm for it.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, The_Capt said:

Ah, so we have been expecting the "NBCD Question".  Yes, we did look at it in detail and the decision to leave it out was a conscious one.  We knew some would disagree but hear me out:

- Nukes.  Ok let's just put that one to bed.  We have a beta tester who was in the "nuclear artillery" in the time period and the smallest strike would wipe out our largest maps, so not real point in modeling this as there is already a ceasefire/surrender option in the game.

- As much fun as it would be to drop a nerve gas salvo on the enemy and watch them squirm (I think inside all of us is that kid with the magnifying glass and the anthill) this is highly inaccurate use of these weapons in context of the game.  At a minimum chemical warfare was controlled and used at the operational level or higher due to the whole escalation dynamics.  So in game it really becomes an environmental factor much like weather or EW as opposed to a tactical weapon system (i.e. it is highly unrealistic for a Bn CO - the main rank of players in the game - to have control of chemical rounds.)

- So that fact really impacts the whole cost/benefit equation for the feature, we prioritized new features that the player can actually employ (e.g. ICMs).  So as an environmental factor, unlike rain or fog, chemical warfare was basically invisible beyond the initial drops, which look like smoke rounds.  So modeling smoke rounds outside of the players control, who then has to live with the effects is starting to sound shaky.

- So what does chemical warfare do.  Well it puts everyone in TOPP/MOPP whatever, so there are now uniform modeling efforts which are not small.  Then play-wise it slows everything down.  All infantry take a serious movement, morale and fatigue hit (which as has been noted the player can already model), vehicles are fully buttoned so spotting goes down.  And probably most importantly logistics take a serious hit, which was the actual main point of chemical warfare, strain operational logistics.  [Aside: this was over 60 years after Ypres, so no one was expecting magic breakthroughs, that is what the nukes were for].  So now supplies may run low and medivac becomes a nightmare.  Interesting but who does that really effect the 90 mins of a CM Battle in any better way than what we already have?

- So now we have a significant amount of work to essentially take decisions out of the players hands.  Play would risk slowing to a drag, which really goes against the fun factor.  And, if a scenario designer really wants to, they can already simulate some of this in the current game. 

So at the end of the day, even though we knew many players had been talking about this feature and it is likely that chemical warfare would have been employed, the effort was simply not worth the potential gains to in-game experience.   We needed to put it on the shelf right next to real-time area denial through flooding and psyops as all really cool and realistic stuff but simply not worth the level of effort to implement while a lot of other priorities existed.

Thank you for the detailed reply. I was wondering because I couldn't really think of a worthwhile way to model CW either. 

edit: a battalion in full MOPP gear would be a nice aesthetic to play with, though...

Edited by KungFuTreachery
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8 minutes ago, KungFuTreachery said:

edit: a battalion in full MOPP gear would be a nice aesthetic to play with, though...

I do not disagree and maybe the modders can jump in on that.  But we really did not want to risk delaying release further over it, we had enough on the ol plate already.

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A BMP2 cannot spot a M113 right in front of it at night.

Is this a bug?

In 'US Campaign Scenario They Own the Night'  I had to use 'area target' to destroy M113s, repeatedly.

The BMP2s would not spot M113s right in front of them, even if they were fired upon.

EDIT:

To make sure, I opened the scenario as US, and, sure enough, the US APCs come with night vision devices.

Poor Soviets, LOL.

Best regards,
Thomm

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I mentioned (a couple titles ago) that i had played a night scenario on a cloudy moonless night and couldn't see my hand in front of my face. Switching the date to get a full moon and giving the scenario clear skies the enemies were exchanging shots across the full distance of the map. So there are variables involved in night fighting. For one Fire and Rubble scenario I kept a 1944 lunar calendar handy to give me the level of darkness I was looking for. I don't know if anyone tested if M60A1 passive night vision devices get a boost on clear starry nights and a hit on dark overcast nights.

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Although I haven't had too much time with it yet, so far had a lot of fun with it!
A lot of different kits, more on par RED/BLUE forces, interesting ERA (imo). There seems to be quite a lot of good quality content.
I also like the various (doctrinal) training scenario's and campaign, a great way to test out the new forces in a more controlled environment. 
Bring on the modules! 🙂

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On 5/4/2021 at 12:20 PM, The_Capt said:

Ah, so we have been expecting the "NBCD Question".  Yes, we did look at it in detail and the decision to leave it out was a conscious one.  We knew some would disagree but hear me out:

- Nukes.  Ok let's just put that one to bed.  We have a beta tester who was in the "nuclear artillery" in the time period and the smallest strike would wipe out our largest maps, so not real point in modeling this as there is already a ceasefire/surrender option in the game.

- As much fun as it would be to drop a nerve gas salvo on the enemy and watch them squirm (I think inside all of us is that kid with the magnifying glass and the anthill) this is highly inaccurate use of these weapons in context of the game.  At a minimum chemical warfare was controlled and used at the operational level or higher due to the whole escalation dynamics.  So in game it really becomes an environmental factor much like weather or EW as opposed to a tactical weapon system (i.e. it is highly unrealistic for a Bn CO - the main rank of players in the game - to have control of chemical rounds.)

- So that fact really impacts the whole cost/benefit equation for the feature, we prioritized new features that the player can actually employ (e.g. ICMs).  So as an environmental factor, unlike rain or fog, chemical warfare was basically invisible beyond the initial drops, which look like smoke rounds.  So modeling smoke rounds outside of the players control, who then has to live with the effects is starting to sound shaky.

- So what does chemical warfare do.  Well it puts everyone in TOPP/MOPP whatever, so there are now uniform modeling efforts which are not small.  Then play-wise it slows everything down.  All infantry take a serious movement, morale and fatigue hit (which as has been noted the player can already model), vehicles are fully buttoned so spotting goes down.  And probably most importantly logistics take a serious hit, which was the actual main point of chemical warfare, strain operational logistics.  [Aside: this was over 60 years after Ypres, so no one was expecting magic breakthroughs, that is what the nukes were for].  So now supplies may run low and medivac becomes a nightmare.  Interesting but who does that really effect the 90 mins of a CM Battle in any better way than what we already have?

- So now we have a significant amount of work to essentially take decisions out of the players hands.  Play would risk slowing to a drag, which really goes against the fun factor.  And, if a scenario designer really wants to, they can already simulate some of this in the current game. 

So at the end of the day, even though we knew many players had been talking about this feature and it is likely that chemical warfare would have been employed, the effort was simply not worth the potential gains to in-game experience.   We needed to put it on the shelf right next to real-time area denial through flooding and psyops as all really cool and realistic stuff but simply not worth the level of effort to implement while a lot of other priorities existed.

What I think is... how would troops differenciate between smoke for shielding LOS in comparison of chemical warfare aerosol? It is true, that the effects might be out of the scope for the player, but an option of "NBC Alarm". I can´t remember the time, but then the soldiers would put on their NBC gear in time and afterwards would have the said negative effects. I know, it is maybe a bit much to ask, but it buggs me a bit, that the Pixeltruppen don´t react to smoke dropping down on them by the enemy, how would they know it's not a toxic gas?

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Just now, Dr.Fusselpulli said:

What I think is... how would troops differenciate between smoke for shielding LOS in comparison of chemical warfare aerosol? It is true, that the effects might be out of the scope for the player, but an option of "NBC Alarm". I can´t remember the time, but then the soldiers would put on their NBC gear in time and afterwards would have the said negative effects. I know, it is maybe a bit much to ask, but it buggs me a bit, that the Pixeltruppen don´t react to smoke dropping down on them by the enemy, how would they know it's not a toxic gas?

Ah, good question, couple ways actually.  First, chemical rounds do look different than smoke for LOS (they used to teach us that), smoke is greyer and heavier, chemical weapons tend to be lighter and whiter.  Second, the NBC alarms would start going off (we had those), and third, someone starts to do the funky chicken.  In reality if chemicals were expected, everyone would be in a stage of MOPP/TOPP before the battle even began.  From TOPP Medium, it takes about 10-15 seconds to move to TOPP HI, which could effect the battlefield but probably not enough to warrant the effort of modeling the whole thing.  

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Posted (edited)

Okay, then it makes more sense. Because I would expect that troops might all the time put on gear, if the enemy drops smoke and might be capable to attack with toxic gas. Which in the context of the cold war is all the time, as the Soviet Union had such weapons and using smoke to block LOS was part of the doctrine. Just better be safe than sorry and put on the maks.

But if smoke can determinated from gas relatively easily, troops would not put on NBC gear, because of the immensive negative effects. I remember when I had to use NBC gear in training. Combat with it seemed to be almost impossible, but I also had a mask in very bad condition with scratched glasses, which made me only able to see a few meters until everything got blurry. There was a small spot in the glass that was clear, and it was a bit like fighting while looking through a key-hole. I lost orientation in the field more than once and it was possible for me to lose my squad from one moment to another. That everybody is wearing camoflage doesn´t make the task any easier. So staying in formation alone while walking without tripping over some nasty root or stone took about 90% of the attention already.
But I guess, some soldiers would have bad material like these as well, because it would not be the right time to order new ones if war broke out. Which again, could have happened theoretically at any moment with only short warning and preperation time.

Edited by Dr.Fusselpulli
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I recall that the view most had at the time was NBC would not be used in a conflict, not in the early stages anyway. 

With the concept that if it was used, they knew the enemy would then also feel free to use their similar weapons. 

It was looked at as a weapon to likely be used if the enemy became desperate and tried to use it to swing the tide of the war if things were not going as planned. 

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UK drill was to mask but unmasking would have been done fairly quickly - I think we went through the whole mask and unmask piece in about 15 minutes during Gulf War 1 when our NAIAD Chemical Detector false alarmed at the same time that Scuds were being whanged across the sky to the rear of us.  Anyway it is a moot point - the fact that NBC isn't in the game and isn't going to be in the game has been made by the development team on numerous occasions across at least three threads now so there seems little point in flogging the dead horse again.

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On 5/5/2021 at 6:04 PM, Dr.Fusselpulli said:


But if smoke can determinated from gas relatively easily, troops would not put on NBC gear, because of the immensive negative effects. I remember when I had to use NBC gear in training. Combat with it seemed to be almost impossible, but I also had a mask in very bad condition with scratched glasses, which made me only able to see a few meters until everything got blurry. There was a small spot in the glass that was clear, and it was a bit like fighting while looking through a key-hole. 

As a Fire Direction Officer, our battery once spent 14 hours straight in MOPP4. The only good thing about it was that it was FREEZING cold out and it made us warmer. But calculating artillery firing data and transmitting it to the guns and talking to the FOs on the radio was challenging to say the least. Hard to see, hard to talk and be understood. 

We ended up using a runner to the guns with slips of paper with the firing data (two actually - one for each 3 guns), because it was too easy for the gun crews to not be able to understand us on the field telephone speaking through the mask. Deflection error wasn't so bad, but an error in elevation could kill our own troops too easily. Made completing fire missions much longer - probably twice the time.

Dave

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Question:

The TOW vehicle appears to be able to spot through its own smoke cover, but does not shoot any missiles through the smoke.

Is this working as intended?

I also keep noticing that engineer M113s try to shoot it out with 30 mm armed BMPs. Which never ends well. On the other hand, the same M113s are scared off by crawling, suppressed infantry occasionally. It is confusing.

Best regards,
Thomm

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51 minutes ago, Thomm said:

The TOW vehicle appears to be able to spot through its own smoke cover, but does not shoot any missiles through the smoke.

Is this working as intended?

The TOW guidance unit tracks an infrared lamp on the missile, it's quite probable that the tracker wouldn't be able to see through the smoke even if the long-wave IR thermal sights could.

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Question:

I seem to be unable to use 'Acquire' at an 'Embark' waypoint in turn-based mode.

Does 'Acquire' work only at the start of a new turn, with the unit already embarked?

Best regards,
Thomm

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3 hours ago, Thomm said:

Question:

The TOW vehicle appears to be able to spot through its own smoke cover, but does not shoot any missiles through the smoke.

Is this working as intended?

I also keep noticing that engineer M113s try to shoot it out with 30 mm armed BMPs. Which never ends well. On the other hand, the same M113s are scared off by crawling, suppressed infantry occasionally. It is confusing.

Best regards,
Thomm

See the other thread on this, the TOWs in-game actually have trouble firing through smoke.  M113 and that .50 can do well against BMPs, seen many kills at sub-500, have to catch them in the flank.  

I am pretty sure the troops have to be fully embarked to acquire.

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2 hours ago, Thomm said:

Question:

I seem to be unable to use 'Acquire' at an 'Embark' waypoint in turn-based mode.

Does 'Acquire' work only at the start of a new turn, with the unit already embarked?

Best regards,
Thomm

Yes, I'm pretty sure that's always been the case. Have to already be inside the vehicle to Acquire. Many is the time I've wished to speed it up 🙂

Dave

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Question:

BMP-2s appear to be near-blind.

Is this realistic or a bug?

Does it help to have a squad loaded?

Even then, the 'Open up' button fails to work, at least in some instances.

Best regards,
Thomm

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