The one problem I see with this random battle generator is the directions of the attack and defensive area appears to be known. This takes away from the fog of war knowledge of where the general direction of the enemy is. Is there any way to randomize the setup directions without the player knowing? Like above it shows the Russians are defending South West, welp that takes all the fun out of discovering where they are setup and defending. Knowing their defensive postioning area is half the battle won. CM series never let you know where the AI was positioning or defending as the spead was from one side of the map to the other. I would rather encounter random spreads of defenses or offensives across the maps instead of ok your objective is DIRECTLY SW of you.
The Random Battle Generator (RBG) has the option of randomizing all or just some of the variables and attack vector is of course just one of them. Depending on the situation you will almost certainly have multiple objectives which will not all lie in a straight line. The AI will be spread across the entire map, or not, depending on how the RBG is set up.
Also next question/issue, Will the AI buy the human players forces for him if the human does not buy them himself? As CM also does this and I find myself having to play with potluck units which I like vs stacking the deck against the AI every time I buy my own units.
I don't quite understand, but here goes ...
The historical time and rarity based distribution of all unit types (vehicles, men, guns, etc) is known to the RBG for both sides during the length of the war 1941-1945. If you use a generic preset the RBG will pick a force representative of the likely historical distribution. You can adjust your force mix as you see fit. However since my original introductory post about the RBG (above), much has changed. There is now the ability to customize the generated battle depending on a particular company structure. This includes unit naming conventions, particular units in use specific to that outfit and of course force mixes. This was the first step in allowing the RBG to generate all types of battles, all the way from entirely fictional and random to a specific fixed scenario (eg 14th Panzer vs 6th Army at Protopopovka May 1942) if that is what you wanted, see below for more details.
As a human player you will get the purchase points you requested and a list of units which will reflect the historical reality to the best extent of our knowledge. If you have better data on service entry, exit, prevalences, etc for a piece of equipment you are free to change the data as you see fit. However depending on the strength of your force as was set in the RBG (remember this can be totally random if desired), you may choose to use your points to bring several understrength units up to full strength rather than spend them all on many depleted sections.
If it's going to be a random battle then ALL things should be random and UNKNOWN to the Player except the amount of points he can input for himself and the computer AI.
If you want totally random you can have it. If you want totally specific you can have that too, and just about everything in between. One of the original criticisms of PCOWS was that the setup positions were fixed and that there was no replayability of a given scenario. Now you can essentially define meta-scenarios (battle plans) which are random battles but with enough core elements fixed to allow the human hand to guide the final output. So you still get your core troops which you know and love, but perhaps support units are different or setups are different or minefields are different or the enemy is different, this time.
I like the buy point system where I say ok both sides get 3000 points to buy units for this random quick battle, ok computer AI pick us some units....and go and play from there. THAT'S REAL TRUE RANDOM BATTLE GENERATION. But, I guess this ain't CM is it?
Yep, yep and yep it is not CM.
I hope if you decide to pursue PCK you will enjoy the RBG. In testing it seems to produce some nice well balanced and believable match-ups in which initial force placements are as you would expect (eg. men in foxholes and hiding in houses, ATG hidden in forests, Tanks moving down roads, snipers in church bell towers, etc). The setup system is such that it shouldn't produce a situation in which you have unsupported or unsupportable units. Nor have units placed in initial suicide positions in which they have no chance of survival. Nobody should (at least initially) be tripping over their own minefields, etc.
PCK now has a pretty fully featured scenario and campaign editor and I hope that after it is released the community will start to use these tools to make some great added content. The RBG battle plan, template and force preset concepts really take this one step further. They too are easily edited, and I hope interesting user creations will also be shared.