This is how H2/H3 originally worked and how ANW was supposed to work:
ORIGINAL: ANW Manual
6.8.2 Weapons Free or Weapons Tight
There is an option in the Game Preferences dialog window under the Settings menu that determines whether or not your units will fire on enemy air targets independently. Weapons Free allows units under your command to engage independently and Weapons Tight prevents units under your command from firing without orders from you. The default setting on Harpoon 3TM is Weapons Free. When Weapons Tight is selected it will be up to you, the user, to engage incoming air and missile targets. It is important to note that Weapons Tight is only respected by units that are unassigned or on plotted missions. Units on other missions or out of comm range will always behave as if the Weapons Free option is selected.
Words like simple, basic, and elegant come to mind when describing this H2 feature. Unfortunately, ANW was released with this option no longer available to the player. The game would always operate as Weapons Free all the time in All instances.
Instead of simply removing it early and thereby rectifying the situation, AGSI tried all manner of jury-rigged repairs and modifications in vain attempts to bolster and prop up this unworkable state of affairs with every iteration significantly exacerbating the situation.
The problem with 'just change it back' is that there are scenarios designed for the current behavior. I'm not going to break one group to fix another. Like I said, there's no rewinding this sort of project.
Emphasis added by HH
This explanation is simply untenable and makes absolutely no sense, whatsoever.
- Weapons Tight is for human control, only. The AI should always be operating under Weapons Free and thus be wholly unaffected. Therefore, scenarios could not have been designed for WeaponsTight since it is entirely a human function.
- Many ANW customers are former players who enjoyed H2/3 and are now returning to the game. They remember how H2/3 ran and are looking for ANW to offer something similar. This "AI controls everything" is not what they expected. The two most recent examples are from incredibletwo and kondor999.
- The argument presented by AGSI is outright contradictory to actions already undertaken by AGSI regarding the Doomed ground units. Credit needs to be given when credit is due and AGSI was absolutely right to reverse this bad implementation.
The revised Land Damage model (Doomed Ground units) was introduced with Patch 3.9.0 on March 25, 2008. Over 50 ANW scenarios have been written since that time. This Land Damage model has since been removed in the 3.9.4 RC13 Beta release. Removal of this (bad) feature will likely affect the 50 scenarios written since the function was initially introduced. It is neither fair nor reasonable for AGSI to make this preservation argument only when it is convenient for AGSI to do so. Bad behaviour needs to be removed wherever it is found. The same level of decisiveness is needed to remove the Weapons Tight / RoE changes.
AGSI has spent considerable time and effort implementing their new RoE behaviour. They can continue to spend an additional significant number of hours trying to make their new rules work. Or, they can spend that same (or fewer, probably) number of hours simply taking it out and restoring the previously functional state. (Like removing the "Doomed Land Unit damage model".) Users tried desperately to save AGSI the pain, time, and expense of this bad implementation early on. Unfortunately, they were ignored. The only real choice seems for AGSI to 'bite the bullet' and fix the game properly. When relative (returning) 'noobs' like incredibletwo and kondor999, along with the other veteran players and designers, can see the obvious solution why can't AGSI?