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Lord Thag

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Everything posted by Lord Thag

  1. I'm in California, so Pacific time. Currently running SB 2.5 though I hope to upgrade soon, if my rig will handle it.
  2. Hmm you might well be right. Once I can afford to upgrade to 3.0 maybe I'll jump on. When do you guys generally play?
  3. No problem Playing that mission on a lark got me back in as well. One of these days, if I ever get any good I'll have to try multiplayer.
  4. It's been awhile since I've had time to play around with Steel Beasts, but some time this week had me digging out the old joystick to give the game another go. After a decent round or two on the shooting range I fired up the old converted Tanks Pro PE scenario. It's good for practice. In the past, I felt I was doing good with three or four kills before being knocked out. This match was different. I have learned a lot more about tank tactics in the interim, and I employed them to good effect in the mission. I eased up to the crest of the starting hill, sighted a tank, and nailed it on the first shot. I backed up into the woods, repositioned to the left, found a hull down position and waited. Two burning OPFOR tanks soon decorated the crest of a nearby hill. Forgot to bring the marshmallows though... I backed into the woods again, and maneuvered around to the far east side of the green belt and waited for a long stretch in overwatch. An OPFOR tank emerged from the treeline on a distant hill, but my gunner nailed him before I could take over the position. The shot compromised our position and another tank, previously hidden by the ridge line, opened fire on us. He missed, but so did my gunner. I took over. Tough son of a !%$#@ took 3 sabot to brew up, which he did quite spectacularly. I headed west into the forest and not a moment too soon, another tank drove right along the tree line to my right, making a dash for my previous location. Clever. Had I been there I would have been flanked and knocked out. I thanked him by graciously adding extra ventilation to his turret :gun: I headed east at high speed, and positioned north of the second clump of woods south west of the farm house. Ten minutes and a few rounds later, two more OPFOR tanks lay burning, victims of two separate long range duels in which my gunnery skills (to my pleasant surprise) proved superior. I'm getting the hang of tank gunnery. Pretty rewarding. Now I was down to one, count 'em, one sabot. And there is still one OPFOR tank left. It's down to the wire. Thirty minutes of cat and mouse play ensure. Where is that damnable OPFOR tank? Finally, I sight the top of a turret along the eastern ridgeline, just above me not thirty feet away, looking away from me. I line up the shot. BOOM! Turret sails sky high. I am about to congratulate myself when suddenly, a tank drives over the ridge line about ten feet to the left of the tank I had just wasted my last sabot on! Seems my initial target was a wreck (note to self... check your friggin' map next time!). The new tanks turret swings menacingly towards me, only yards away. I slam the M1 into reverse and a shot sails over my head. All I have are HEAT rounds. I return fire. BOOM! Direct hit. BOOM!. Another direct hit. BOOM! Again. And again. And again. Attempts to flank him don't work, and we circle like a couple of bi planes in an old style air duel, close and nasty. He finally hits me back. A sabot round takes out my driver and my left track. Immobilized, I swing my turret around, and I'm down to a couple of rounds. I fire both at weak points BOOM! BOOM! The damn OPFOR tank rides through both hits and stops. I am literally staring down his barrel at about twenty feet. Dammit. Guess that's it. Then two minutes go by. We stare at each other, twenty feet apart. One of the last couple of HEAT rounds apparently damaged his gun, and so we stare at each other each incapable of taking out the other. It's a draw. 8 kills and 1 disabled tank. This is why simulators are so much fun. Awesome game.
  5. Taking the advice given in the last thread I posted, I downloaded the Camp Hornfelt scenarios and gave them a shot. The experience has really made me appreciate how great of a sim Steel Beasts is. I figured I'd start with the first one, the Tactical Movement scenario. The first time was a bust. I had a heck of a time getting the AI squad to avoid trees and such, took too long, and got obliterated by about twenty tanks on a ridgeline overlooking the huge central plain. The second try though, I think cemented my respect for this sim. It went like this. I learned on the first try that taking the long, sneaky route around where I assumed the enemy would be wasn't the best plan. It took to long, and gave the enemy time to prepare a position opposite the valley. I decided to do something different. I put both platoons in column formation and raced for the first phase line. Once there, we slowed down, fanned out, and kept to the southern road, due to it's being well covered by forest. It paid off. No enemy contact, and we advanced in good order to the second phase line, just east of the big central valley. Here's where things went south. I scanned all the ridgelines and came up empty. I knew they were coming (or were already there), but I didn't know from where. I decided to hug the southern valley rim, as it offered the best approach to the other side. So we fanned out into wedge formation, and leapfrogged across the valley. Almost made it too. Then, in a second, my lead platoon cried out 'Tank North!' and I hear the crack of a cannon firing. The lead tank returns fire. We had stumbled across a column or armor heading into the valley. My platoon was on overwatch, but the tanks were just out of site behind the crest of a low rise. I drove forward, but two late. The lead tank of 2nd platoon is knocked out. I race up and hull down. Three tanks turn to face me. Clang! One down. Clang! Two down, and then I exchange a couple of rounds (all hits!) with the third one before blowing it's turret off. I survive, but the last shot took out my left track. I also notice that the second tank of second platoon is minus it's ballistic computer, gunner, and loader. It's alive, but useless in combat. In most games, I would have just started over, but somehow, that felt like cowardice. So I stuck it out, disabled in the southern edge of the valley, in the open, with only a single M1 as backup. For 35 minutes I waited for that damn tread to get fixed, while wave after wave of enemy armor and apcs assaulted our position. Gunnery practice has paid off though. Wave after wave of enemy tanks died. By the time I was ready to move, the entire western edge of the valley was covered in smoke, wreckage, and the shattered hulls of enemy tanks. I think my tank alone accounted for 17 tanks. I was down to around 4 shots left on the cannon. Finally, the track was repaired, and with only a few minutes remaining, we made a last drive to the objective. APCs and infantry attacked, and we took them out, only to discover a platoon of enemy armor parked right smack dab in the middle of the objective. So I fire my last four rounds, and all the enemy tanks are flaming wrecks. I was going to make it after all! And then the last damn APC on the map sneaks out of the woods and gets a flank shot. :decu: But still. What an awesome mission. This kind of thing is what makes a good sim so much better than your average video game. None of this was planned, and yet it made for such an intense, nail biting time. Never had so much fun losing a mission in my life
  6. Good to know. I'll try the 'old fashioned' way when I fire it up next. Another question. Now that I've got gunnery and the Tanks scenario down, what would be good to try out next? Any scenario recommendations?
  7. Ah, ok, good points. So I can assume that killing five or six tanks in the 'Tanks' scenario, is pretty good for a noob like me? I thought I was missing something, but apparently, I'm playing pretty well. Cool. I really like that 'lase the treeline' idea. I'll try that out the next time I give the scenario a go. Now I just have to get my gunnery range score up in the 90s and learn how to properly command a couple of platoons. Thanks
  8. Thanks for the pointers. What about sighting in a solo tank though (which is what the Tanks mission is). Any tips for finding them before they find you, or is it just something that comes with repeated play?
  9. SBPPE finally showed up in the mail a couple of days ago, and I have played through all of the tutorials, and am steadily upping my score on the firing range. The next step was to fool around with the scenario 'Tanks'. I have to say, this sim is really immersive! The first few tries resulted in a lot of unexpected deaths from out of nowhere. Never realized how much focus and scanning it takes to survive in a modern tank. The engagement ranges are vastly farther (obviously) than the WWII tanks I have played in the past. So I got me arse handed to me a bunch, and then started to realize the following formula: Hill + Tank = Sabot in Face :biggrin: So I started learning about following the valleys, and about narrowing your scanning area to terrain as it appears, and the value of the TC position as opposed to the gunner's seat. Good times. A couple of questions, if you will though. 1. How do you deal with lazing tanks who are behind scattered woods/shrubs? This is what is usually killing me now. I'll get the drop on a tank, usually hull down and driving, that will pass behind shrubs and what not every second or two. I have both varieties of lasing down decently well (and I am starting to get pretty good with HEAT rounds too), but the shrubbery seems to muck up my range finder, resulting in misses (and subsequent deaths). I have learned to mitigate this by tank positioning (and reversing), but surely, there must be a better way to deal with these kinds of targets. Do you go manual sights, or is there a trick I'm missing? 2. The AI sighting. This seems to do decently well in front of the tank, but terribly on the sides. My ability to spot targets with the TC's binocs is not so hot either. Any tips for sighting or improving sighting skills? Thanks in advance. What a great game! I can't wait to get the basics down so I can join multiplayer.
  10. Thanks for the suggestions guys. I look forward to getting my hands dirty. Hopefully it will show up this week :biggrin:
  11. Hi all. When I was a kid, my folks bought me M1 Abrams Battletanks for the old Genesis console (great game, if hilariously low res these days), and I've been a 'treadhead' ever since. Mostly WWII stuff, but recently I picked up Combat Mission Shock Force and it rekindled my interest in modern tank combat and tactics. I've been eyeing SBPPE for a couple of years now, and with some xmas money, I finally decided to take the plunge. Now I'm waiting like an impatient five year old for it to show up in the mail. Seriously, I'm as bad as that kid on the Christmas Story waiting for his decoder ring. I've read a few of the 'noob' threads here, but I was wondering if there are any tips/advice/resources that might help me get over the initial learning, err, cliff Once I do, you can be sure I will be around to get blown up in style on Friday nights. I will likely be quite dangerous to the foliage and assorted wildlife :biggrin: So anyway, I look forward to learning and enjoying this great sim. Nice to meet ya'll.
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