Using the Engage Non-Hostile Target, Exclusion Zones and Unfriendly Posture Setting to give the AI a few more IQ points.
One of the bigger advantages human players have is a greater ability to deduce posture than the AI does. This is exemplified in Command by players being able to manually mark contacts hostile, neutral, friendly etc. In the case of designating hostile it generally gives the human player a shoot first capability which is critical to winning modern engagements and often forces an opponent into defensive maneuvers. On the flip side the AI often seems dumb because it isn’t able to do this, pursues unknown contacts until a posture is known which often leads to it fighting out of the defensive.
The developers have given you a few functions to help out the AI.
The first is using the Engage-non hostile targets ROE. You can set this up at a side, mission or unit level. This basically tells the AI to ignore all posture rules and fire at anything that comes into range.
This is a very broad setting with the best use case of a wartime setting with IADS systems or something like that. Its shoots at everything in range that is detected.
It is not great for a scenario populated with lots of civilian traffic or a high potential of civilian, neutral or friendly coming into range.
The second is using Exclusion zones. This function allows you to define a unit’s posture when it crosses an area you define. The nice thing is we’ve also given the ability to define by unit type (aircraft, ships, subs, facilities) and then define a posture (Hostile, Unfriendly) based on that.
Two great use cases for this are as follows:
You can create these zones with any reference zones including one’s that move in reference to a surface group. This allows you set a tolerance as to how close the AI will allow a certain unit type to be before going hostile. No more waiting to take a first punch that might obviously be coming.
The second case is defining an area around a strike target. This allows the AI to define any pop targets such as fighters or air defense sites as hostile and react to them accordingly. You may want to define a fairly large zone circling the target if there are defenses in depth.
The downside of using the exclusion zone is again for scenarios populated with many allies or neutrals. The developers have given the AI an out in that regard though in the form of the unfriendly posture setting.
The unfriendly posture setting is very useful because it allows units to carry out the actions of an attack while not actually attacking. So in the case of an intercept mission aircraft will move in and attempt to identify and only engage if attacked. This allows you to step into an attacking without a high potential of a neutral kill.
Hope this helps and please do provide some game play tips if you have them.