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Chemical warfare / CBRN threats

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Is this a statement of disappointment, or admiration for my manliness?

 

If the former, I should point out

  • that the quoted article clearly says that you need a separate product (PlumeSim) in order to make it work in the first place
  • that it was a technology demo/proof of concept
  • that in order to simulate and visualize the effects of contamination require a massive effort in all kinds of areas
  • that the simulation of CBRN threats in a computer game has enormous ramifications in all kinds of areas, not the least the abuse potential to create disturbing footage with the associated public shitstorm that would probably not focus on the obscenity of chemical warfare, but on the messenger (the simulation game that was used to generate the footage); there is a reason why there are no child characters in the Personal Edition. Last but not least there are considerations with respect to export control

If the latter, thanks for the compliments, but maybe a bit misplaced in a public forum. ;)

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20 hours ago, Ssnake said:

that the simulation of CBRN threats in a computer game has enormous ramifications in all kinds of areas, not the least the abuse potential to create disturbing footage with the associated public shitstorm that would probably not focus on the obscenity of chemical warfare, but on the messenger (the simulation game that was used to generate the footage); there is a reason why there are no child characters in the Personal Edition. Last but not least there are considerations with respect to export control

I've asked about the simulation of CBRN threats before, and I still feel like it could be done without being overly graphic.  If civilians are a concern, simply remove them from any region that's been contaminated by CBRN threats.

 

Use regions in the scenario editor to define an area effected by a chemical agent or whatever.

 

Vehicles with NBC systems will be forced to button and remain buttoned, or they will risk contamination.  Unbuttoned crew, crew in contaminated vehicles, or crew in vehicles without NBC protection suffer restricted vision from their NBC masks, and sometimes cannot hear commands given through an NBC mask.

 

Unprotected infantry randomly go "ULP!" and roll over in the grass just like the currently do when you shoot them.  We don't need a graphic representation of death by nerve agent or chlorine, just to say that "this unit is no-longer combat effective".

 

Protected infantry lose stamina more rapidly, regain it more slowly, and can't see or shoot as well.

 

My interest, personally, is less about nuclear since I figure that would mean the whole world is going to hell in a handbasket super quick, and more about how chemical warfare would effect a cold war scenario.

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40 minutes ago, Maj.Hans said:

My interest, personally, is less about nuclear since I figure that would mean the whole world is going to hell in a handbasket super quick, and more about how chemical warfare would effect a cold war scenario.

 

The technical aspect would be that chemical munitions are identified as possible to use, and the Mission Oriented Protected Posture (MOPP) would be upgraded to MOPP 1, and the combat effectiveness of your infantry would be reduced to 75%. Upon upgrading to MOPP 4, there would be slightly reduced vision, primary peripheral, and an increased risk of heat casualties. This is according to doctrine. 

 

For the human element, your Soldiers would groan as they put on their Joint Service Lightweight Integrated Suit Technology (JSLIST), and sit around for days sweltering in a garment with the breath-ability of a giant trash-bag. Everyone would soon smell like a mix of sweat and the unpleasant chemical odor the JSLIST puts off when exposed to moisture. Until chemical munitions were used. Soldiers would scramble to put on their gas masks, in a mad flurry of tightening straps, and exhaling noises as they clear their masks of any potential chemical agent's residue that may have come into contact within the few seconds of exposure to the open air. This would be followed by putting on rubber boots and gloves, and even more sweat somehow forming on their now covered faces. Hopefully, a blister agent wasn't employed. Any fighting from an armored vehicle would be relatively the same, with hatches being closed restricting vision for both friend of foe. The infantry would have the worst of it, rapidly running out of breath due to sucking oxygen through two canisters. Both sides would suffer equally. Afterwards, units would need to be deliberately decontaminated, for fear of spreading the agent throughout the theater, denying mobility corridors to both friend and foe. After fermenting in your own defecation for up to 30 days, each Soldier's battle buddy would have the honor of helping remove the JSLIST, and being exposed to whatever horrible odors await inside. Having served their purpose, these would be sealed in an airtight bag, along with the Soldier's equipment, and would be destroyed. The Soldier would rub charcoal all over his body to help remove any lingering inert traces of the agent, and at long last get some relief as he is sprayed down at multiple decontamination stations with water, although the water need not be potable. 

 

Fighting in a CBRN environment is a suck-fest, no matter which conflict you are trying to simulate. 

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Mirzayev said:

 

The technical aspect would be that chemical munitions are identified as possible to use, and the Mission Oriented Protected Posture (MOPP) would be upgraded to MOPP 1, and the combat effectiveness of your infantry would be reduced to 75%. Upon upgrading to MOPP 4, there would be slightly reduced vision, primary peripheral, and an increased risk of heat casualties. This is according to doctrine. 

 

For the human element, your Soldiers would groan as they put on their Joint Service Lightweight Integrated Suit Technology (JSLIST), and sit around for days sweltering in a garment with the breath-ability of a giant trash-bag. Everyone would soon smell like a mix of sweat and the unpleasant chemical odor the JSLIST puts off when exposed to moisture. Until chemical munitions were used. Soldiers would scramble to put on their gas masks, in a mad flurry of tightening straps, and exhaling noises as they clear their masks of any potential chemical agent's residue that may have come into contact within the few seconds of exposure to the open air. This would be followed by putting on rubber boots and gloves, and even more sweat somehow forming on their now covered faces. Hopefully, a blister agent wasn't employed. Any fighting from an armored vehicle would be relatively the same, with hatches being closed restricting vision for both friend of foe. The infantry would have the worst of it, rapidly running out of breath due to sucking oxygen through two canisters. Both sides would suffer equally. Afterwards, units would need to be deliberately decontaminated, for fear of spreading the agent throughout the theater, denying mobility corridors to both friend and foe. After fermenting in your own defecation for up to 30 days, each Soldier's battle buddy would have the honor of helping remove the JSLIST, and being exposed to whatever horrible odors await inside. Having served their purpose, these would be sealed in an airtight bag, along with the Soldier's equipment, and would be destroyed. The Soldier would rub charcoal all over his body to help remove any lingering inert traces of the agent, and at long last get some relief as he is sprayed down at multiple decontamination stations with water, although the water need not be potable. 

 

Fighting in a CBRN environment is a suck-fest, no matter which conflict you are trying to simulate. 

Very well described!!!

 

The longest I was under an NBC suit ws 18 hours...6 of those with Mask on....that sucked well enough to know that any minute longer would be pure hell.

🤮

Edited by Grenny

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I had the dubious honors to be trained as an NBC recce soldier (not the specialized NBC troops, but as one of the cool guys to be sent on a foot patrol to determine if there was, indeed, a chemical agent or a radiological hazard within marching distance). "Only the brightest" would be chosen. Yeah, right. 9_9

So, the culmination was an eight hour long walk through nature in a smelly rubber suit and gas mask on; I chose the option to "partially freeze your ass off" by wearing only underwear inside the rubber suit, others preferred the envelope #2, "boil yourself to death". Both teams had, literally, squishy feet in soggy socks and poured our own sweat out of the boots at the end of the day, and I'll spare us all the other unsavory details.

 

Overall, a terrible experience which is dominated by absolute bodily discomfort that completely escapes computer simulation. We may be able to calculate the volume of air intake of a breathing soldier, multiplied by the concentration of a chemical agent, and then aggregate that to show certain symptoms depending on exposure and protection level. Not sure if the "choke on your own vomit" part could be adequately included, but I see that as a challenge primarily for the sound engineer and possibly some shader and particle effects. But the primary challenge is that you're supposed to maintain your concentration when everything in your body screams that it wants to get out of the rubber encasing. That's the aspect that can't be adequately simulated.

 

If you're after immersion, pack yourself into warm clothes, turn off the A/C, then wrap your body into airtight foil and don a gas mask. Wear some leather gloves, and then some cleaning/housework rubber gloves on top of them. Do a light workout for one or two hours. Like, clean your apartment, vacuum all rooms (and thoroughly, no Roomba allowed!)

It is permissible to lace your underwear with itching powder, or cayenne pepper. You're not allowed to take the stuff off until you have completed everything, then taken a shower with your clothing befor you get to get the real shower. Once that you've been all soggy and itching for an hour or two, fire up Steel Beasts for a two-hour mission. If you fail because you were unconcentrated, replay the mission. No bathroom breaks.

 

Then there's the computer simulation part where we could, in principle, simulate how infantry becomes slower to do just about everything for a short while after the contamination alert has gone off, and how then everything grinds to a halt where nobody achieves anything in the hours following that. We could sink a lot of artists' and programmers' hours simulating regular animals in the environment, and how they litter the landscape with their carcasses soon after the chemical agent was brought out, then how they start to bloat in the sweltering midday sun before and eventually burst from the gases building up in their intestines before rotting away in the coming weeks. There's a whole lot of things that could be done here.

 

The one thing I'm unwilling to do is something half-assed. We haven't even gotten around to implement night combat. We have barely implemented dynamic terrain (and here just the technology itself, not yet all the application cases for it, which alone will take more development time). Given the high amount of effort, the relative inadequacy of any implementation, the abuse potential, the fact that discussing this NOW is nothing but a distraction from the actual new content of version 4.1, is it any wonder that I tried to cut the discussion short with a simple "No"?

Sure, one day, maybe. But not anytime soon. There's so much else to work on with a much higher net benefit for most users.

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Posted (edited)
On 5/30/2019 at 5:17 PM, Ssnake said:

Is this a statement of disappointment, or admiration for my manliness?

 

If the former, I should point out

  • that the quoted article clearly says that you need a separate product (PlumeSim) in order to make it work in the first place
  • that it was a technology demo/proof of concept
  • that in order to simulate and visualize the effects of contamination require a massive effort in all kinds of areas
  • that the simulation of CBRN threats in a computer game has enormous ramifications in all kinds of areas, not the least the abuse potential to create disturbing footage with the associated public shitstorm that would probably not focus on the obscenity of chemical warfare, but on the messenger (the simulation game that was used to generate the footage); there is a reason why there are no child characters in the Personal Edition. Last but not least there are considerations with respect to export control

If the latter, thanks for the compliments, but maybe a bit misplaced in a public forum. ;)

I was expressing my disappointment, sorry, this is something I'd like to see implemented. But I take your points.

 

Could we please have switching action phase penalty zones to at least abstract a contaminated environment?

"Zone A active mission time > 05:00"

 

That way one could have the area denial effect (which would suit me) without the complications you allude to.

 

AKA the simple / half assed way.

Until you can find the time to implement it properly.

 

Puh-lease?

Mr Ssnake?

🙂

 

Also what is eSim's position on implementing something like TFAR

(Radio propagation simulation)

🙂

Edited by Hedgehog

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I haven't said that "it wouldn't happen under my watch". Please stop putting words into my mouth.

What I'm saying is that if you really want to do it it requires a concerted effort because I don't want half-assed solutions. As a bare minimum you need

  • to simulate, and visualize protection levels
  • adapt pretty much all character animations. With protective gear on, everybody moves differently
  • add environmental clues, especially dead animals. Which means, you also need to make living animals a more or less regular sight in the world. Which requires artwork, animations, and not the least proper AI to make the animals behave somewhat naturally
  • If SB Pro is supposed to support all that as a standalone product, you also need to have at least some primitive model of how contamination spreads (in other words, an atmopheric flow simulation)
  • We need to research physiological effects of wearing protective suits (other than the anecdotal stories that we have in this thread) to be in line with accepted models (after all, we want it to be somewhat realistic, acknoledging the massive limitations under which such an endeavor would have to be undertaken)
  • We need adequate AI reaction to contamination, be it NBC sensors that give an alarm at very early stages, be it for autonomous characters that see other people "keel over" as you put it, be it for units under scripted behavior

These are just six points that immediately come to my mind. Without any doubt there are at least a dozen other aspects and two or three dozen cascading side effects that I haven't even recognized, let alone considered yet. To those among you who champion such development I can but say two things,

  1. it's not that I don't recognize that it's an important aspect
  2. please accept that I'm not "inventing reasons why it can't be done". It could be done, yes. I just recognize that the task is much bigger than most of you think it is.

When it comes to chemical threats, I do not wish to trivialize the topic by making it a mere gimmick, just like I don't want to implement a night combat mode that is merely a visual effect. Both are complex tasks with profound effects on AI, and that alone makes them formidable challenges. And then the question is, who needs this. Is it adequately addressing an identified deficit in a (military) customer's training regiment that would justify the considerable investment - especially in the light of the fact that a decision to work on this specific set of features will inevitably mean that we would not work on a number of other features. Everybody is entitled to his own opinion what the priorities should be. But at the end of the day I will need to make the decision which development effort will yield the biggest return on investment for most of our customers in a somewhat limited amount of development time.

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We did a limited NBCRD / CBRND aspect to Rolling Thunder 16 (although very abstracted).

 

A limited CBRND "effect" can be generated - random crew casualties due to poor masking drills (depending on the quality of the troops), with flow on reductions in crew effectiveness.

 

It did not go anywhere replicating the "real life" impacts of the nearly the three weeks I spent locked inside a vehicle though or the degradation of Infantry in MOPP-4 or the difficulties of decontamination men and machine or treating casualties.

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