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Normandy: Immobilisations


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Not to worry! Starting with the game after Normandy we will have Modern and WW2 "families" going in parallel. The reason is that the two markets have some overlap, but not much. That means we can easily put out the two concurrently without robbing ourselves of sales. Even better, the market for modern wargames is a nice size. Not as big as US centric WW2 Western Front (that's the big one), true enough, but it's still plenty big enough to continue to devote resources to for as long as we can see ahead. Plus, unlike WW2 each Modern wargame we do will have different hardware, organizations, and matchups because that stuff is ALWAYS evolving. WW2, for obvious reasons :), is set in stone.

Steve

Now THAT's what I like to read! [shameless plug coming up!] Since I am now the ripe old age of 46 years old and on full medical retirement due to my military injuries, if you guys ever have need of someone like me.... I might be done with my previous careers, but that does not mean I cannot move into a new one! Always wondered what it would be like to work on things like this that I enjoy full time! :-)

I have not released anything yet, but I have three major campaigns I have been working on for a while now. I am one that loves to create scenarios and campaigns - but when I do this I do not do it half-ass and so they are taking a bit of time to complete. Not only do I pay attention to detail, but I am a stickler for reality and immersion.. I guess that comes from real life experiences.

The only real issues I have in the campaigns I am doing are that i wish I had some top of the line stuff to work with. I.E. Current modern Russian and Chinese battle vehicles etc. Although I am making due with what the game now has, the hard part is truly coming up with workable solutions in some cases because the OpFor does not have any equipment that can hold its own in some cases. Some would call it being a perfectionist... I just think if you do something, do it well and do it right the first time.

Someday I am sure you will have given us other add-ons... but oh how I wish I had access now to the British Challenger tanks and German Leopard tanks and of course most APC/APV units. Additionally, right now it would be nice to have the latest Russian and Chinese armor as well... Trying to substitute some of these with current in game options is not working very well and so two of my campaigns are only about half done. The remaining one should be done soon though.

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"I just see this thread as an example of how hungry we are for another WW2 game"

No, (well yes), but more me trying to pick a 'sweet spot' in BFCs development of Normandy where they are in a coding mode to fix the bogging thing. Like, the right time to nag.

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Redwolf

BFC is not into the habit of giving player toggles for this kind of thing, for game mechanics. That option is out, I can promise you that.

Well, that’s just dumb on their part. It’d take them less time than it has for me to explain it, for them to implement (what I suggest).

Panzfest mostly agrees with me.

flamingknives said:

A bogging doesn't ruin a battle any more than a fluke shot, it just seems that way.

It’s fundamentally different, as I have endeavoured to explain.

Once more into the breach:

I have to drive down the road. (Oops, you’re bogged, you lose). Game screwed, everyone’s time wasted. It’s worse than a fluke shot.

I agree “It just seems that way”. But it’s a game. It’s about what you do.

Again, I’m amazed that so many people don’t ‘feel’ there’s a difference between losing because you decide to move, at all - and being hit by a lucky shot. They’re in different categories.

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i don't mind random bogging & immobs (and it's not THAT random even in CMBB -- your decisions DO matter), but i can understand people who do. CM is a game of tactics and players like to be able to make choises and decisions, realistic or not. compare for example to Steel Panthers where decisions about risking immob are made quite clear. SP's model is simplistic but it doesn't matter that much because it's just a game and the subject is marginal for simulating company/battalion level combat. it's enough that it includes terrain types that tanks can't pass or which can cause immobs.

what comes to realism, the probability of immob while veteran crew is driving slowly on hard surface is something like having your arty barrage be 100% ineffective because the shells are flukes due to sabotage at a factory line. or lose a random man per every x minutes due to sickness or self mutilation. have a whole company exit the map because they misunderstood commands. randomly have all your "victory points" nulled at the end of battle because YOU (the game character, not the player) misunderstood the mission and your whole battle was just a mistake. get strafed or bombed (say, 20 tons worth) randomly even when neither side has CAS assets. receive 60 minutes of offmap fire at your men because a friendly unit mistook you for an enemy. have command delays measured in tens of minutes or hours. and so forth endlessly. it's realistic and more likely to take place than that veteran crew immob while driving slowly on hard surface. that type of stuff is not in the game because most players would find it just annoying & stupid. some players find random vehicle immobs annoying in the same sense.

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Redwolf

Again, I’m amazed that so many people don’t ‘feel’ there’s a difference between losing because you decide to move, at all - and being hit by a lucky shot. They’re in different categories.

Thats probably because many of them, like myself, cant remember a single incidence of bogging ruining an entire battle out of thousands of games played. Personally I see bogging as an important part of the simulation....I like the fact that I have to think twice before sending a Tiger across soft grasslands in the rain.

That being said as its obviously a concern to you why not to set your battles to dry conditions as at the least that should limit bogging to very rare circumstances.

what comes to realism, the probability of immob while veteran crew is driving slowly on hard surface is something like having your arty barrage be 100% ineffective because the shells are flukes due to sabotage at a factory line. or lose a random man per every x minutes due to sickness or self mutilation.

Keep in mind that in CMx1 immobilisations also represented mechanical failure.

Dan

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Why not implement the toggle I suggest?

It's four lines of code.

(Er, not counting it's representation in the interface)

Arggg!!! there're few things more annoying than that line - "it's only four lines of code". If they implement the toggle, aside from the UI, they have to access it in umpteen places in the code that deal with bogging, they have to allow for these "toggles" to be synchronised in multiplayer, they have to balance scenarios, etc. across all the permutations these "toggles" allow, etc.

Do you think they don't do "toggles" out of the meanness of their hearts, that it's only 4 lines of code but they are just being spiteful or dogmatic? really dude...

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Keep in mind that in CMx1 immobilisations also represented mechanical failure.

still, historically you have stuff like a tank army do a 300 km road march with 5-10% breakdown rate. in CMBB you get as many breakdowns for 1% of that range.

tank immobs are realistic, but so are a multitude of other things that are not included in CM series.

as i wrote, i personally don't mind immobs and have in the past spoken for more immobs (though only what comes to specific terrain types unsuitable for armor), but i understand people who would prefer it to be one option amongst others.

i also do understand that you can't have option for everything (a bit like that options screen in Steel Panthers) and if there was tank immob option undoubtably people would like to see options for things like MG jamming as well.

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still, historically you have stuff like a tank army do a 300 km road march with 5-10% breakdown rate. in CMBB you get as many breakdowns for 1% of that range.

True, but CM isn't simulating road marches. By which I mean that vehicles are (I assume) meant to be driving in combat conditions, where you are more interested in getting from A to B alive and as fast as possible, rather than in a way consistent with mechanical longevity. Drivers who are worried about dying and rather scared are probably a little tougher on vehicles than drivers moving 100 miles forwards to near the front lines. Driving down a road in CM isn't merely driving down a road - it is driving down a road in a combat situation. Pootling 100 miles along a good road is a long way outside what CM is meant to be simulating, and so, unsurprisingly, it doesn't do a very good job of simulating it.

More simply, breakdown & immobilisation rates on non-combat road marches have little to do with breakdown and immobilisation rates in tactical combat situations (particularly ones like CM scenarios where you know damn well that there is something out there that can kill your tank).

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Arggg!!! there're few things more annoying than that line - "it's only four lines of code". If they implement the toggle, aside from the UI, they have to access it in umpteen places in the code that deal with bogging, they have to allow for these "toggles" to be synchronised in multiplayer, they have to balance scenarios, etc. across all the permutations these "toggles" allow, etc.

Do you think they don't do "toggles" out of the meanness of their hearts, that it's only 4 lines of code but they are just being spiteful or dogmatic? really dude...

IIRC they have also mentioned in the past that they are wary of adding in (easily codable) toggles like this to avoid splintering the multiplayer community. Put in a toggle, and some people will play with it always on, some always off, and some don't much care either way. But the always on and always off groups don't get to play each other. Which lessens the size of the multiplayer community, and do so again for each toggle that you add in. Put in enough options, and people will have a hard time finding people willing to play the settings they want, which hurts the MP viability of the game.

Plus it can screw up the balance of scenarios. Not bogging so much - I doubt there are very many scenarios that depend greatly on bogging rates. But, if you are willing in principle to make various 'preference' features optional, you will find some that hurt some scenarios. (WeGo / Real time already does this to some extent - some scenarios work much better in one or the other, since the advantages the player has in either can vary).

You may disagree with where the upsides and downsides balance out. The point is merely that it isn't a case of 'just put this toggle in - there are no possible negative consequences'.

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True, but CM isn't simulating road marches. By which I mean that vehicles are (I assume) meant to be driving in combat conditions, where you are more interested in getting from A to B alive and as fast as possible, rather than in a way consistent with mechanical longevity. Drivers who are worried about dying and rather scared are probably a little tougher on vehicles than drivers moving 100 miles forwards to near the front lines. Driving down a road in CM isn't merely driving down a road - it is driving down a road in a combat situation. Pootling 100 miles along a good road is a long way outside what CM is meant to be simulating, and so, unsurprisingly, it doesn't do a very good job of simulating it.

More simply, breakdown & immobilisation rates on non-combat road marches have little to do with breakdown and immobilisation rates in tactical combat situations (particularly ones like CM scenarios where you know damn well that there is something out there that can kill your tank).

what i love about this place is the rationalization and denial of obvious errors.

it was found in Soviet studies (http://www.battlefront.com/community/showpost.php?p=443704&postcount=104) that 4 out of 15 T-34s (> 25%) would experience an immobilization due to breakdown after driving some 8 km under stress of potential combat (in contrast to 5-10% losses on 300 km roadmarches). their 100-200 km deep armored penetrations were made possible only by the development of various synthetic hallucinogens that made the drivers unaware of the potential threat of combat.

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Interesting thread. I have no issue with the way bogging is handled in CMx1 or CMSF. If anything, I agree with Steve that bogging could in fact be higher.

I just wanted to address Redwolf's point that, based on bogging rates in CMBB, the German Panzer forces would have run out of tanks before the end of july!

I do not believe you can just apply the bogging rates in a linear fashion. AFVs in ww2 did break down regularly, but they were just as regularly put back in service, within a few hours or days through repairs. Even knocked out tanks were regularly put back into service, only tanks which were beyond redemption or burned out were written off. So for every 10 tanks that becomes immobilized in a CMx1 battle, you might expect that 9 or even all 10 would be put back in service quickly after the battle.

You also have to take account that the battles in CMx1 are extraordinary events. They represent probably less than 1% of the service life of a vehicle. The other 99.9% of the time, the AFVs would be moving strictly on roads where the chances of bogging were much less.

In ww2, you can also find numerous anecdotes of extreme bogging. Just a few from memory:

-In august 1944, the King Tigers went into action for the first time. 20 left the start line, 11 broke down before they even came into range of Soviet forces;

-in spring 1944, at the hight of Rasputitza, a Soviet mechanized force entered a town in western Ukraine and found 200 abandoned german AFVs, hopelessly mired in the mud, in and around the town;

-in spring 1944, the Germans assembled a Armor Dream Team around Anzio. However, they had little effect on the battle since any AFV which moved off the roads was almost certian to become mired in the mud. As a result most of the german armor stayed on the roads and out of the battle;

-in may 1944, a unit of 14 tigers was ordered to drive down from Rome to Anzio. After a few days, they were ordered to drive back to the depot in Rome, at which point only 2 were still operational. 12 broke down on the trip. 4 were abandoned and destroyed, the other 8 were towed back to the depot where they were also abandoned and destroyed in late may, as the Allies were approaching Rome.

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-In august 1944, the King Tigers went into action for the first time. 20 left the start line, 11 broke down before they even came into range of Soviet forces;

-in spring 1944, at the hight of Rasputitza, a Soviet mechanized force entered a town in western Ukraine and found 200 abandoned german AFVs, hopelessly mired in the mud, in and around the town;

-in spring 1944, the Germans assembled a Armor Dream Team around Anzio. However, they had little effect on the battle since any AFV which moved off the roads was almost certian to become mired in the mud. As a result most of the german armor stayed on the roads and out of the battle;

-in may 1944, a unit of 14 tigers was ordered to drive down from Rome to Anzio. After a few days, they were ordered to drive back to the depot in Rome, at which point only 2 were still operational. 12 broke down on the trip. 4 were abandoned and destroyed, the other 8 were towed back to the depot where they were also abandoned and destroyed in late may, as the Allies were approaching Rome.

That's all fine, but now you go and project experience from using untested, overloaded tank designs and/or running around in exceptional weather conditions to the whole thing.

In this thread I have always called for more realistic discrimination of bogging and immobilization events.

What I have a problem with is a historically reliable design that was not known to bog down constantly, in "regular" weather conditions breaking down with something like too high probability doing 5 km in half an hour.

I don't have a problem with a situation where you want to simulate tank unfriendly conditions, the scenario designer sets ground conditions to "mud" and you bog down a lot.

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Why not implement the toggle I suggest?

It's four lines of code.

(Er, not counting it's representation in the interface)

I didn't say I wouldn't want some switches, there are several mechanisms in CMx1 that I think are useful but underengineered to a point where turning them off would be overall more realistic (auto-sneak-exhaustion anyone?).

I am saying that BFC is not in the habit of doing this. CM games don't have game mechanics switches.

Also, things get more complicated when you have two players as both would have to agree on a set of switches.

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flamingknives said:

A bogging doesn't ruin a battle any more than a fluke shot, it just seems that way.

It’s fundamentally different, as I have endeavoured to explain.

Once more into the breach:

I have to drive down the road. (Oops, you’re bogged, you lose). Game screwed, everyone’s time wasted. It’s worse than a fluke shot.

I agree “It just seems that way”. But it’s a game. It’s about what you do.

Again, I’m amazed that so many people don’t ‘feel’ there’s a difference between losing because you decide to move, at all - and being hit by a lucky shot. They’re in different categories.

Equally, I am amazed that people feel that there is a difference.

If anything, fluke shots are more annoying than bogging. Bogging, when it happens (hasn't been a major issue in CMX2, to me at least, so far). Fluke shots seem to happen in such a way that reward zero tactical skill and can be more damaging to my chances of winning. e.g. I've spent time and effort getting my forces in position and a fluke shot wrecks it. No skill, no way of predicting it, game over, I lose. Boggings can be dealt with.

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URC,

it was found in Soviet studies (http://www.battlefront.com/community...&postcount=104) that 4 out of 15 T-34s (> 25%) would experience an immobilization due to breakdown after driving some 8 km under stress of potential combat

Good, some stats to work out :) That's roughly 25% chance of a breakdown for every 8km traveled, or a 3% chance per 1km. If you have a 2km long map and 11x T-34s each one has a 6% chance of bogging, average. Anyone here better at math than I wish to compute the probability that one of the 11 will break down while driving forward on a 2km long map? Anybody want to figure out what the average chances of having a vehicle bog over the course of 10 such games?

As Kwazydog said, and I've already said, this is definitely a tempest in a teapot situation. Bogging is not NEARLY as likely to happen as some have insisted over the years. PaulAU... how many times have you had a vehicle bog on a dry road surface? How many vehicles have you driven down a dry road surface over the years you've been playing CM? I'd be surprised if it is more than a fraction of a percentage. Therefore, bringing that up each time you post can be categorized as a "strawman" or "outlier" example which has nothing significant to offer this discussion.

Flamingknives,

Equally, I am amazed that people feel that there is a difference.

There isn't. I mean that empirically. If I maneuver my tank and it gets taken out by a fluke shot I have lost my tank due to a circumstance which I didn't anticipate and therefore couldn't avoid. If I maneuver my tank and it gets stuck due to a condition I didn't anticipate, and therefore couldn't avoid, I'm hit by a negative game situation. There is, however, one difference... if I lose a tank to a fluke shot that tank is out of the battle for good. If I have a tank bog it *might* still be able to contribute based on where it breaks down relative to the circumstances of that particular scenario.

So when one looks at this rationally, empirically, and gamewise... it's better to have a vehicle get a fluke bogging than it is to get taken out by a fluke shot, even though the circumstances leading up to each are nearly identical. Now, I grant that EMOTIONALLY there may be a difference for some people. Most people appear to take it in stride along with fluke shots, sudden panics, losing a key unit at the wrong time, etc. It's just one of many "stuff happens" situations that test your abilities to overcome that problem. In other words, challenges which highlight stronger players.

Redwolf,

I am saying that BFC is not in the habit of doing this. CM games don't have game mechanics switches.

Correct. There's a bunch of reasons for this. The primary one is to have us all playing the same game. We don't want the community to be fractured into hundreds of subsets based on personalized settings, which is why we don't allow our game data to be modded. If enough people don't like something, and can make a case for changing, then it should be changed for everybody. Having people customize the game experience for their own particular interpretation of reality or gaminess is not what CM is about nor will it ever be.

Also, things get more complicated when you have two players as both would have to agree on a set of switches.

It's worse than that ;) It's hard enough to troubleshoot problems with you guys when we're all playing the same game. Trying to troubleshoot issues when a player is playing any one of a dozen different feature combinations, which he will of course forget to tell us about, is absolutely nothing we want to deal with. It's bad enough with the different levels of FOW, so we have no intention of making it even more difficult to support such a complex simulation.

Additionally, the community is stronger when there is a common set of rules for people to discuss. The opposite extreme, where game data is open, is a horror show. "Gee, I don't think the Panther's penetration power is right". "Who's Mod are you using?" "Johny-G's Kick Ass Panther Mod". "Oh, is that the same mod that biLlyBOb666 put into his CrazyCool Mod, because that's what I'm using." So on and so forth.

Lastly, although turning bogging off is not akin to an open data environment, but it pushes the game down that slippery slope. Next people will want the ability to turn off friendly fire because that bothers some, or how about vehicle cook off because that sometimes can suck, or disabling building collapses, or not having limited vision at night so one can enjoy the coolness of the graphics without the ill effects, etc., etc., etc. A case just as valid can be made for any number of features in CM that sometimes come around and bite people in the butt. So where to being and where to stop? Easy... if we don't begin we don't have to stop :D

Steve

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URC,

Good, some stats to work out :) That's roughly 25% chance of a breakdown for every 8km traveled, or a 3% chance per 1km. If you have a 2km long map and 11x T-34s each one has a 6% chance of bogging, average. Anyone here better at math than I wish to compute the probability that one of the 11 will break down while driving forward on a 2km long map?

Steve

Odds are about 50% that at least one will break down.

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Good, some stats to work out :) That's roughly 25% chance of a breakdown for every 8km traveled, or a 3% chance per 1km. If you have a 2km long map and 11x T-34s each one has a 6% chance of bogging, average. Anyone here better at math than I wish to compute the probability that one of the 11 will break down while driving forward on a 2km long map?

Just to be sure, you spotted that these are stats from CMBB, not from real life?

This is even higher than I remembered. Unfortunately the linked post doesn't mention ground conditions.

Might be time to look for the data I collected back in the day.

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Is it based on real world data redwolf? If so this stuff is always very interesting.

I meant my CM data, sorry. I probably posted it here but finding it might be tough.

There must be some sort of source on breakdown of tanks per kilometer road march. I wonder whether emailing David Glantz might yield some results.

The number of recovery vehicles in a Panzer division and the number of tank servicemen probably isn't too bad as a starting point. Maybe Panzertruppen and/or Spielberger has some data?

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Heh... read URC's post too without looking at the link itself :D I just read the last bunch of pages in the linked thread and, no surprise, it's exactly the same arguments we've seen over and over again. And even less surprising, some of the same people involved in that discussion are involved in this one. Same arguments too.

The rest of what I wrote stands. There is materially NO DIFFERENCE between losing a tank to bogging or losing one to any number of other game reasons. There's no way we're going to special case bogging % as some sort of user toggle and not a couple dozen other things which people perpetually complain about. And I've restated the reasons for that.

What I see here is the same thing I saw in the previous thread. There is one group saying "I don't like the bogging the way it is because it affects my gameplay. I don't give a rat's behind about realism, I just don't like it the way it is". The other side says "realism is realism, suck it up and deal with it". What both sides are lacking is some sort of strong statistical argument to back up their claim.

The best information put forward thus far is from people with experience with military vehicles off road saying that people who don't have such experience WILDLY underestimate how easy it is to get stuck. I count myself as part of that group, though my first hand experience off road with military vehicles (at one point I had 2 wheeled, 1 tracked) is far more limited to someone who has been in uniform. What I've not seen is any of the anti-bogging people even attempting to refute this part of the argument that bogging should be common.

So we're at an impasse without data since neither side has relevant data to offer up to support their case. Extrapolated and vague data is no better than anecdotal data because neither one of them is detailed enough to base conclusions on. So the challenge is for there to be better data brought out. Since we care only about getting it "right" (as close as we can), and don't give a flying fig about what the bog rates were in CMx1 because CMx2 isn't CMx1, some good data would be great to have.

Steve

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