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Panta

Disobedient units

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I have had problems keeping a unit in a place without it moving by itself. Tried STAY an NONE orders, nevertheless, somehow it manages to take the initiative to move into the woods, which causes me some troubles, without having been attacked or spotted.

Other than court-martialling its platoon commander, how can I be sure it remains in place, shutting their engines off? :eek2:

Cheers,

Panta

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Stay works, so there must be something else going on with your units. Upload the scenario so we can have a look.

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Roger wilco, as soon as I go back home. It's a canned scenario, though, H on H part I-Pzgrenadier defence. The rebellious unit is the tank platoon already on the map; after erasing all its orders & paths it still moves out of the road and gets into the woods marching happily southwest, have to extract it manually. (silly bastards! ;) )

Panta

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Shoot them!:biggrin::biggrin::biggrin:

No need to, they're so silly that OPFOR tanks shoot them quite easily! :(

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Roger wilco, as soon as I go back home. It's a canned scenario, though, H on H part I-Pzgrenadier defence. The rebellious unit is the tank platoon already on the map; after erasing all its orders & paths it still moves out of the road and gets into the woods marching happily southwest, have to extract it manually. (silly bastards! ;) )

Panta

have you tried openning it in the mission editor then resaving it? overwriting the original? it might be a matter that it was made pevious to too many changes in PE. other than that, i dunno. houses, water, trees, other units in the way?

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have you tried openning it in the mission editor then resaving it? overwriting the original? it might be a matter that it was made pevious to too many changes in PE. other than that, i dunno. houses, water, trees, other units in the way?

Yes, precisely. I have erased all previous routes with the editor, saved it and then played the modified scenario.

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after erasing all its orders & paths it still moves out of the road and gets into the woods marching happily southwest...

So after you remove the old, are you giving it a new battle position function with "STAY" behavior? If not, the implicit behavior will take over and the unit may seek cover or move to engage if units/fires are within it's area.

IOW: you can't just park a unit and expect it to be still. You must use a stay command for that.

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Something to consider:

You may assign a unit a tactic and give it a behavior, forcing it to orient in a direction specified by how you have arranged the tactic and/or behavior. A unit so-instructed will retain that tactic/behavior until you give it another, however.

If, for example you give a unit a Defend tactic in the planning phase, and tell it to do so in Line formation, it will retain that formation until you give it another tactic/behavior set.

That may be a large part of your problem if you find individual vehicles wandering into places where they shouldn't be. They were placed there originally.

You might also have a look at unit placement in the View mode of the F5 Map mode. This will tell you exactly which vehicles in a particular unit are where. Handy, for those occasions when you're wondering why everyone in a unit isn't on that road through the dense forest.

Shot

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In addition, without an unconditioned retreat route, all static positions - except i think stay tactics - will revert to hold tactics

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As far as unconditioned exit routes are concerned: It need not be a retreat route, but that usually is the safest option.

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Ouch! That's far more complex than I supposed. Actually I managed to keep the units in position with the STAY order, but couldn't avoid some other units arriving along a road in COLUMN and with GUARD orders to become entangled in the woods and approaching dangerously to the enemy just because they were feeling like to.

Something I don't understand is why armored units would spontaneously go into dense woods without very specific orders to do so. Other than the driving problems, the increased probabilities of breaking a track should be taking into account at all times...

Cheers,

Panta

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Well, a human brain is able to reach conclusions all by itself.

A computer needs to be told what to do.

However If Al was to fully program a completely flawless TC behaviour then He'd still probably be doing it today, 15 odd years downm the line.

Therefore things are vastly simplified in this respect.

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Well, a human brain is able to reach conclusions all by itself.

Speak for yourself! ::debile2:

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Well, I have been playing the same scenario (H on H part I-Pzgrenadier defence) again and again, about twenty times so far, changing tactics and procedures, adding or replacing units, etc.

What I have found is that the AI is very poor when you are in the woods. Tanks shouldn't go into forests so easily, I presume. Nevertheless, I have noticed a strong tendency of armored vehicles to go into the woods under their own initiative, which is sometimes very annoying. I have tried several approaches and formations/tactics to no avail. Only the manned vehicles can avoid that. You are in command of a tank platoon and suddenly you start looking for your fellow tankers to find that they're lost somewhere amidst the trees and heading precisely the wrong direction.

So I think that scenarios with dense forests are more suitable for multiplayer, unless you have a high frustration threshold. :mad:

Cheers,

Panta

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Something I don't understand is why armored units would spontaneously go into dense woods without very specific orders to do so.
A real armored unit wouldn't; in SB it would for the same kinds of reasons that can cause an armored unit incapable of amphibious travel to attempt to swim if it gets too close to a water obstacle.

The difference between a game and real life, after all; try though the former might to emulate the latter.

Shot

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A real armored unit wouldn't; in SB it would for the same kinds of reasons that can cause an armored unit incapable of amphibious travel to attempt to swim if it gets too close to a water obstacle.

The difference between a game and real life, after all; try though the former might to emulate the latter.

Shot

Yes, I fully understand that, and also know, having played other tactical wargames, some of them actually very good, that making scripts for every possible situation isn't an easy task. But I would like the AI didn't allow tanks getting into the woods unless specifically instructed to. :(

Cheers,

P.

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The AI are simply following the instructions given to them. If they head into the woods, there's a reason. They don't arbitrarily decide, "Hey, let's F&^k with the human and drive into the woods." Their tactics, ALONG with where the black/hollow dot in the view fan is set, will determine their behavior. I'd RTFM again, especially the part about the view fan, and how it affects the AI.

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The AI are simply following the instructions given to them. If they head into the woods, there's a reason. They don't arbitrarily decide, "Hey, let's F&^k with the human and drive into the woods." Their tactics, ALONG with where the black/hollow dot in the view fan is set, will determine their behavior. I'd RTFM again, especially the part about the view fan, and how it affects the AI.

Where can I found more related info about it? There are many new changes, among them that mysterious black/hollow dot you refer to, that I don't fully understand, since they are not described in the standard manual. :confused:

I have just re-read the manual I got with the game (its on line version) and a rapid search of the word "dot" just found a couple of non-related occurrences.

Cheers,

Panta

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The release notes for 2.460 are part of the documentation and provide at least a brief overview about all the new features. Use that as a basis for the Search function of this forum, and I'm sure you'll find answers quickly. :)

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Thank you Ssnake. I have just printed it and will read it immediately (work allowing, I am at the desk right now and pics of the corpses of the victims of the ill-fated Air France flight may arrive at any time! :redface:).

And, not a criticism at all, but a constructive thought: I know that writing the manuals is one of the difficult aspects of programming, but think that the new arrivals will find themselves lost in absence of a comprehensive manual. I purchased the game last February and almost immediately the latest version was released. Too many aspects of the game mechanics are new to me and as a newcomer, I have not followed their development on the forum.

The best asset you have is your hyper-efficient way of answer and solve doubts and questions, but that might become a little overwhelming for you, I am afraid. :)

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So far I manage :)

Our tutorials are the primary way to teach you the basic concepts of working with the individual vehicles. It is much better to have the tutorials and then a practical involvement of the user than many pages of text describing the same.

Another question is that of learning style. Simulations support an explorative learning style best, and it's tough to make a decision which information to present in which sequence when writing a manual. Besides, the bigger long-term challenge is manual maintenance, keeping the content up to date. For a company of our size this is a very tough task. It is much easier for me to maintain the version history and then do the Q&A thing in the forum rather than scanning the manual over and over to see which paragraphs may be affected in it by a minor change that was recently made.

What is important to me is that we have a consistent user interface and clear and identifiable principles in the whole system design so that, once that the user has understood that much is listed in context menus, he can eventually figure out how a certain thing could be done given what he has learned about the software so far.

I am afraid that there really is no simple solution to the whole thing. Knowledge management and manual maintenance would actually be a half-day job, so I try to find a workaround, and that's the suggested procedure of release notes and forum Q&A. It may not be ideal, but it is a manageable solution for me.

Another question is why we don't cover tactics. This is a fundamental decision. Do we impose a "Steel Beasts doctrine" on our customers or do we let them figure out what works and what doesn't by themselves, eventually based on what they have been taught by army instructors a few days/months/years before, and what they have learned from field manuals. Ideally a field manual would be a good guide to combat in SB Pro (and it works to some extent, if you can accept that we have to simplify things here and there).

What I learned at officers' school is that there is no "right" or "wrong" in tactics, just rules of thumb that usually work but still, not all the time. There is room for unconventional solutions, as things not done by the book help with surprise - which often is the pivotal factor in tactics.

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Your prompt answers to any of our (sometimes silly) questions is very much appreciated. :) (Long live Ssnake! :diable:)

I presume that your main interest is to sell the simulation to the military and that keeping a small community of enthusiasts happy enough to continue playing (and testing) every mod is just a way to have a reasonable and gracious feedback. That's why US Major Holridge, TacOps designer, endures philosophically the claims and requests of us members of the private TacOps list. It is something convenient for all parts.

One very good thing about SBP is its scenarios replayability, you can try each one from different approaches and with the editor alter anything at will.

Nevertheless, I admit that the best way to use it is in multiplayer mode. When I'll will feel confident enough, I will try to contact some local army officers here in Uruguay and see if there is any interest in multiplayer missions. Uruguay has a tiny army and using simulators for training seems to be the wisest thing to do. Maybe I will find enough interested people to play through a LAN network...

Cheers,

P.

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OK, when you drop a waypoint on the map, you can assign different tactics to it. As soon as you give the waypoint a tactic, a pink view fan will appear with a black dot in the center. See the attached pic. Now, this view fan can be widened, or narrowed. This determines where the AI will direct most of their powers of observation. A smaller fan means that if an EN unit appears in there, the AI will see it faster.

Now for the black dot. This is a line of sight tool. You can click on the dot and move it towards and away from the waypoint. If it turns hollow, that means the unit can see that point from the original waypoint. If it turns black, it can't see that point.

Now, if you are not careful with this, you could potentially set a waypoint behind a ridgeline expecting your tank to stop there. However, if the LOS dot is on the other side of the ridge, the AI will try to move to a position where it can see that point.

This is why it seems that sometimes the AI decides to take off on its own and gets killed.

ViewFan.jpg.0a9a2db46596db22738548ea8b35

ViewFan.jpg.0a9a2db46596db22738548ea8b35

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Now, if you are not careful with this, you could potentially set a waypoint behind a ridgeline expecting your tank to stop there. However, if the LOS dot is on the other side of the ridge, the AI will try to move to a position where it can see that point.

This is why it seems that sometimes the AI decides to take off on its own and gets killed.

That's the only (and crucial) thing and hadn't get yet, and as you suggest, it is most probably the main reason for some units to continue advancing beyond their ordered waypoint.

As the visualization of that particular fan has to be selected from the menu, it doesn't shows up by default, AFAIK, I missed it in my previous scenarios. I will take it into account in the future.

Cheers,

Panta

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