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Tango29

SB Ethics at Bridges

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Last week's TGIF - "Heavy Metal War - H2H" - had a major RED advance route on the west through a long defile that included several bridges. None of these had obstacles emplaced on or near them. It was a gift scenario for the BLUE defenders on that flank: deny the bridges, and the RED force would be going nowhere at the speed of light as they had no engineer assets at all, nor did they have plow tanks. However, SB does not apparently allow bridges to be identified as reserve demolitions, and subsequently destroyed as part of a defensive operation. The only way I can think of denying a bridge to an enemy is to place one or two heavy vehicles directly on it, fight from these vehicles as long as possible, and let them die in place to form a roadblock (bridgeblock?) of sorts.

This type of action would most certainly slow the advancing force, and maybe stop it completely if they do not have, for example, bridging equipment to bypass the bridge. But I'm wondering if there is an "unwritten law" of SB: "Thou shalt not use vehicles to block bridges." BLUE during the latter stages of Op VARIABLE had obstacles on either side of bridges over a main water obstacle, but no destroyed vehicles directly on them (AFAIK).

Does anyone know what the SB "Ethics at Bridges" is in this regard? TIA for any guidance!

Cheers!

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No, I would consider anything that involves blocking the bridge with the defending side's dead vehicles as "gamey" simply because there is no reliable way to clear said bridge with vehicles. It is true there is no way to demolish bridges in SB, but if someone wanted to do that then the scenario should have the bridge start as broken if it is truly not "crossable".

The only non gamey way to deny a bridge crossing currently would be to defend the bridge by fire, through the use of both direct and indirect (that scenario had no artillery for neither the attacker or defender though, which was quite silly to me). Then try to kill the enemy on the bridge and block it that way. If you do it any other way then it just causes a lot of people to be pissed off.

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Pretty much agree with V on this. The problem occurs if/when an attacking vehicle gets killed on the bridge. Even though the defender doesnt place vehicles on the bridge, the bridge is still blocked, if recovery assets aren't in the sce.

As for Fri sce, the flaws and their root cause were discussed at length in text/TS so I will let them pass here without further comment.

And wasnt it Red not Blue, that blocked the bridges in Op V? Since that was a series of sce on the same map, there was several alternatives to simulate available solutions, though they were not implemented

Mog

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I wanted to get this straight before I read too much into it. I'm looking at a situation where a defending force has a good bridge in its front, might want to use it in future ops, but also might have to blow it to deny it to an advancing enemy, all during the Action Phase. SB just can't do that, at least not yet.

I'm not sure yet how effective FASCAM is in SB if it's fired onto/around a bridge. However, I'll assume that the Mission Author will give the opposition mine-clearing assets if the friendlies have FASCAM. Accordingly, it would be a delay device, not a showstopper.

I guess that you could use dead vehicles if the opposition had a means of clearing them. That not being the case, if I want to block a bridge, it seems that the legal/moral/ethical/non-fattening way to do it is to destroy an enemy vehicle on the bridge itself.

Yes, my bad, it was RED that blocked the bridges in VARIABLE, but they used various obstacles on either side of the bridges. I don't recall anything specifically on the bridges themselves. That said, I've been known to be wrong before, so I can check the VARIABLE AARs in the Wiki to verify.

Thanks, both, for your input. Most appreciated!

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I stand corrected. The actual bridges were not blocked by obstacle, just the approaches. As for blowing a bridge, there may some way to cleverly use a damage if region and a trigger to deny the bridge. Perhaps something like damage driver if trigger 1 is true. The problem there is there is no visual indication that the bridge is "blown", so the attacking side now effectively loses the use of a vehicle trying to cross a bridge that it would have avoided, had it seen it was destroyed.

Its an interesting dilemma. The blocking of the bridge with a vehicle is a semi-workable stop gap solution, the problem being as V said, the vehicles cannot reliably be cleared. Reliably being the key word.

Until a bridge that can be destroyed, and then (possibly) breached with an AVLB is added to SB, we'll just have to make do, knowing that whatever solution a sce maker chooses, it will not be palatable to one side or the other.

Mog

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In case anyone cares, my philosophy on what I call game theory:

(not that weird statistical stuff that leads people like Greenspan to totally screw 90% of the world's population by pretending that the capital-owning 10% act 'rationally' rather than out of sheer naked self-interested greed -- but I digress.)

Joe Gamer wants to be amused. He wants some, but not too much, stimulation. And he wants that stimulation to usually, but not always, result in a happy ending. Too much stimulation and it would be like work. If it always ended happily, then Joe couldn't convince himself that he was challenged, and the happy ending wouldn't have any value.

So how does Joe get stimulated? He must be presented with a discrete decision or series of related decisions, some amount of information that purports to relate to the matter or matters to be decided, and he must be given a preferred outcome of the matter or matters.

In order for the stimulation to be satisfying, there must be a real possibility of obtaining the preferred outcome, otherwise what's the point? Paradoxically, however, the outcome must be determined at least in no small part by chance.

That is because just as drama is divided into the categories of tragedy and comedy -- tragedy being when misfortune befalls you or those with whom you identify and comedy being when the same misfortune befalls your obnoxious neighbor, chance is divided into the categories of skill and luck. Skill is what happens when chance delivers your preferred outcome, pure naked luck is what happens when your opponent is favored by the good Lady.

And amusement is what happens when one is able to successfully savor the illusion that one has, through skill, conquered chance.

So in this particular, if the object is to cross the river, there must be a real possibility of being able to do so. There should be a couple of ways to do it. That way Joe gets to decide which way is 'best'. But no matter what his decision (unless it is entirely boneheaded), whether he gets across should be totally random. Thus when he is presented with his happy ending, he can believe that he earned it. Exact same thing for the other guy who is trying to keep Joe on his side of the map.

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I can think of a few ways to simulate a blown bridge, but am at a loss as how to cross/repair a blown bridge "reliably".

I'm not sure yet how effective FASCAM is in SB if it's fired onto/around a bridge.

It is very effective for the defender. (Ref OP V #11 :))

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I'd hoped that there might be a "simple solution," but such is not the case. We can get into the doctrinal never-never land of reserve demolitions, but SB doesn't have that feature, at least not yet. Best to leave things as they are, bearing in mind that a hard kill on a substantial enemy vehicle on a bridge will effect almost the same result as a blown bridge...for both sides!

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