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RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:29:59 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


* F4 - Task * / * F7 - Cohesion *

Here we see a reinforcement force (air drop) which just arrived reorging automatically due to its low level of cohesion. They are not going to process any new orders until they get done with this.


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Post #: 91
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:30:52 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


* F4 - Task *

Here we see the implicit REORG tasks generated at the FUP by the AI prior to an attack getting underway. Also, note the implicit move task generated for the mortar unit to cover as it drops back to provide on-call fire support.


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Post #: 92
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:33:57 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


* F4 - Task *

Here is the same attack as above which has transistioned to the next phase in the process. Our units are now advancing with assault orders.


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Post #: 93
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:34:59 AM   
Tzar007


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From VALENT PHILIPPE:


thinks to MarkShot . Bravo you know at the "perfection" the game , you are a very good teacher of the game! can i use all you say with Airborne Assault? i have not yet in france the new game. Continue to help the student we are in the game! Thinks .
Phil

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Post #: 94
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:37:52 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


* F5 - Deployment *

Here we see four screen shots of an engineering unit tasked with setting up a road block changing deployment status from: moving -> taking cover -> deployed -> dug-in. You will notice that they manage to get dug-in just in time as some German units are coming down the road. A good thing for us.


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Post #: 95
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:38:58 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


* Engagement Status *

We have been talking in this thread about the Unit Info Box. I would just like to point our here that besides the Rout Status of your units being a good indication of how an attack or defense is doing, there is also the engagement status. This will also let you know if your units are giving better than they are getting, so to speak.

Purple arrow is the Unit Info Box (showing Rout Status).

Yellow arrow is the Engagement Status (indicating under fire).

(Taken from the same attack show above.)


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Post #: 96
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:40:09 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


* F3 - Rout Status *

Here is our attack from before. Notice the green arrows meaning our troops are advancing and focused on the job to be done. Notice the red box of the enemy unit. This unit has been broken by our attack.

---

Remember I am doing very small isolated screen shots, but the main value of the Unit Info Box is to be able to view a lot of units at once to quickly access the big picture.


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Post #: 97
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:41:25 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


* F3 - Rout Status *

Oh, this does not look good! Here you can see our attack has begun to falter. Two of our units have already retreated. I guess I underestimated how much fight the German Bridge Garrison had left in them.

---

Well, I have run out of time. I'll try to post some more illustrative screen shots regarding the Unit Info Box when I get a chance.

{Just a 11 more days until 11/17/03. Of course, you could always wait until December, but if you think that German Road Garrison was tough wait until you see the crowds at your local Mall this holiday season. Every American who got a Bush tax cut check this year is going to be over at the EB counter spending it. Simply, brutal. }


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Post #: 98
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:42:17 AM   
Tzar007


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From elmo3:


Great stuff Mark. Keep it coming while we wait, and wait, and wait...

Two questions please:

1. Is there any variability in the strenght of the para units when they land? IOW will their strength vary each time a scenario is replayed due to some randomness in losses while landing or is strength fixed?

2. In the shot of your unit defending the road in the woods, is there an easy way to tell facing? Also is there a way to order the direction of facing when they dig in so they're not all facing away from the expected line of attack?

Thanks,
elmo3

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Post #: 99
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:42:54 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


No, there is no random variable degree of force strength provided in the scenario editor. <=== See Dave's post below.

{Steve, could you simulate this feature by using the random/drop/reinforcement feature in the scenario editor?}

I, myself, am not too familiar with the scenario editor. I've looked at it a few times to see what it's capable of; and again, recently, to review the reference manual as part of the beta testing process. I'd rather take advantage of the fine work of others than spend my time developing maps and scenarios.

---

Two ways you could determine facing:

F6 - Facing: It will show it in the unit info box.

or

Select a unit and a 3 sided box will be drawn around the unit which shows it's facing.

---

Yes, you can explicitly order the facing for a force along with formation and the size of the footprint they cover. Otherwise, the AI will handle it for you.

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Post #: 100
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:43:36 AM   
Tzar007


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From Arjuna:


quote:

Is there any variability in the strenght of the para units when they land? IOW will their strength vary each time a scenario is replayed due to some randomness in losses while landing or is strength fixed?


When a unit arrives as a reinforcement by para drop or glider landing there is a chance that it will suffer casualties. The chance is increased the more covered the terrain. In clear or heide terrain its around 1-2%. Glider landings suffer more casualties than para drops when the terrain is covered. A glider unit landing in woods or city can be decimated - not pretty!

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Post #: 101
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:45:14 AM   
Tzar007


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From elmo3:


Thanks to both of you for the answers. Good game support is always appreciated.

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Post #: 102
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:45:59 AM   
Tzar007


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From Golf33:


quote:

No, there is no random variable degree of force strength provided in the scenario editor. <=== See Dave's post below.

{Steve, could you simulate this feature by using the random/drop/reinforcement feature in the scenario editor?}


There is a way to do it but it's reasonably technical - if someone actually wants to create a scenario with this feature let me know and I'll talk you through it.

Cheers
33

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Post #: 103
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:46:49 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


This post is in response to Phil. Phil asked in our French support thread for a discussion how to employ frontage|depth in the game. I'll answer here and JeF can do the translation over there for me.

As with many features of the game, my use is fairly basic. But I'll stress a point which I made previously ... good application of the basics will get you a victory nine times out of ten.

---

{If there are any errors here, I am sure Dave will jump in and correct them.}

An important point to realize is (which I didn't when I started playing RDOA) frontage|depth only applies to groups of multiple units and not to a single unit. I believe, this is also true of formations. So, if you give a single unit a frontage|depth setting it has no impact. On the other hand, if you have multiple units, then it will affect how the AI positions each unit. (Note, that facing works for single units.) {Hmm, I am not 100% sure of this, since I do note that box size drawn in HTTR for a single unit does appear to change. Dave?}

Given what I said above this increases the utility value of frontage|depth in HTTR versus RDOA, since the Estabs now consistently go down to company level as opposed to the just battalian level. Also, the ability to give individual orders to a company allows a greater degree of flexibility when some micro-managing is desired.

Also, I believe there were some fixes/enhancements made to how HTTR handles (frontage|depth)+formations. However, I don't recall what they were. {Dave?}

* Defense *

The AI will provide a default frontage|depth which is appropriate to the force at hand. Here are the times when I will manually adjust it:

(1) I am trying to occupy a wooded or urban area. The area is smaller than what would be the default footprint of the force, but I don't want the force to place units out in the open. So, I adjust the footprint to fit the area available. (Within reason, of course. You are not going to try to pack a battalian into a single house!)

(2) You have an objective with a large perimeter radius. You can adjust the frontage|depth to cover required area. This is useful when the perimeter is only slightly larger than the standard 1km-1.5km diameter objectives. If it is much larger or the enclosed area is wooded or urban, then you a probably better off establishing a number [D]efend tasks with multiple forces. (The latter would be superior both in terms of achieving the required footprint and creating a more effective defense.)

(3) I commonly use line formations when building a defense of multiple positions (usual done when you suspect attack/approach from particular directions and are trying to exploit terrain features). I will tend to adjust the frontage|depth for the line to conform to the terrain feature (woods, urban, etc ...) that I am trying to take advantage of. You'll also be adjusting the facing.

(4) Keep in mind that thin forces give you better spotting/interdiction/harassment ability versus denser forces which give you better firepower/mutual support/stopping ability. As such adjusting frontage|depth is often done with the construction of layered defenses. (see earlier in this thread a fairly extensive example of constructing a layered defense) The initial line which is intended as a screen for the purpose of making first contact with the enemy is usually set up with a wide frontage. You don't want stopping power. You mainly want to make contact by having spotting ability to cover as much area as you can a good distance from the main line of resistance. Correspondingly, the main line of resistance is intended to stop the enemy. As such, you will adjust frontage|depth to use a more dense footprint to increase fire power.

* Attack *

The AI will provide a default frontage|depth which is appropriate to the force at hand. Here are the times when I will manually adjust it:

(1) Often you may be trying to attack through a narrow corridor of trees or an open field. You will want to keep infantry forces in cover and armor in the open if possible. You can use the frontage|depth to adjust the shape of the force to try to prevent the attack from spilling over into inappropriate terrain.

(2) On the attack, you are often making a bold thrust to try to break the enemy defense. You can, of course, increase the ferocity of your attack by adjusting AGGRO parameters, etc... You can also reduce frontage|depth to increase the fire power. This can help you punch through an enemy line. Once you have broken through, the total enemy defense is more likely to crumble. Depending on the scope of the battle, you may also further exploit the hole.

(3) Sometimes your attack has been more or less successful, but you still have isolated enemy units stubbornly refusing to yield. Their presence within the perimeter of an objective can cause you to forfeit its point. You can often launch a follow on attack with a force having a large frontage mainly intended to mop up any isolated enemy units which are still resisting.

---

Well, I hope these thoughts prove useful to you.

{JeF, s'il te plait traduir a Phil dans notre thread Francaise. Merci.}

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Post #: 104
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:47:55 AM   
Tzar007


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From VALENT PHILIPPE:


Thinks to MarkShot for his help. if possible jef can explain a little bit in french it will be pleasant to me to understand more.
thinks to you MarkShot .Merci et a jef s'il peut traduire ou m'aider.
phil

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Post #: 105
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:49:01 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


In the following thread, I have attached some PDFs (prepared for another game) which introduce some of the AFVs seen on the WWII battlefield. It should be on the second page of the thread or so:

{the link to the thread has been removed since the thread was lost during the forum hacking incident. This info should appear in the official strategy guide}.

< Message edited by Tzar007 -- 2/28/2004 8:49:52 PM >

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Post #: 106
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:50:49 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


The attached zip is a repeat of what I posted in a separate thread. I thought those just receiving the game might be in too much of a hurry to read through to the end of this thread.

--- Previously posted ---

Folks,

If you are just getting the game this week, here is a one page keyboard reference I had made for HTTR during beta testing. It's attached as a 100% JPG. You can do a SAVE AS from your browser and use various programs to print it in landscape orientation.

Please note that there is one keystroke missing.

"~" (under the escape key) will toggle the small unit icon mode.

Attachment: HTTR-KeyboardRefCard.zip

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Post #: 107
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:51:38 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


HTTR mods:

{the link to the thread has been removed since the thread was lost during the forum hacking incident. All map mods for HTTR are available here: http://www.highwaytothereich.com/downloads.asp)

< Message edited by Tzar007 -- 2/28/2004 8:53:48 PM >

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Post #: 108
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:52:30 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


Here is map tip for those of you who may be trying to learn to read the map while you play (and you will also notice that the game manual is b/w).

You can place your mouse pointer anywhere on the map and right click. This will bring up a description of the terrain underneath the pointer.


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Post #: 109
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:53:38 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


Another map tip ... there is an option to anti-alias the map. This smoothes out lines. (It has nothing to do with the AA feature built in to your 3D video card. It's a static rendering of map by the game. "If possible" refers to whether a larger map cache has been generated for the map to support this feature. For all the CD maps, the map cache files include support.)

I, personally, do not use this as I feel it tends to blur the place labels a bit. Also, I understand it requires a little more CPU and I would rather use my CPU cycles elsewhere.

MarkShot has attached this image:


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Post #: 110
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:54:45 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


The following series of posts had been permanently lost, but I still had the images. So, I have recreated them from memory more or less.

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Post #: 111
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 3:55:45 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


We had previously discussed how the unit info box helps the player understand the big picture very rapidly. My other screenshots presented had very few units displayed. Here is an example of a successful attack by my forces (Axis). Notice all the red arrows (routing) of the Allied units, they are running for their lives.

{I have changed my map textures to use the RDOA Classis Look for this screenshot.}


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Post #: 112
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 4:02:48 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


Here we see an example of an Allied attack in progress. Notice that the unit info box shows that these units are assaulting. Sometimes when you encounter enemy units, they may just be in transit. But we can see that this is an organized attack, and this could mean serious trouble for the defenders at the bridge.

{I have changed my map textures to use the RDOA Classis Look for this screenshot.}


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Post #: 113
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 4:03:49 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


For new players, trying to implement your conceptual plan (especially at the start of a non-trivial battle) in HTTR may be a bit daunting. I'll share with you how I approach it and maybe it will help you.

I use a "bottom up" approach. This is a term that comes from computer systems development. It means to start at the lowest levels and work your way up. This is how I approach formulating orders for a large scale plan. This does not mean that you need to formulate your plan in a "bottom up" fashion; only that it is more convenient to construct it with the HTTR interface in a "bottom up" fashion.

Why do I advocate doing it this way?

(1) You are less likely to forget important support units if you give them their orders first. If their organic superiors are given orders first, you may loose them track of them.

(2) From an accounting perspective, HTTR rolls up your force estimates to the commanding HQ. If you plan to dettach forces from an HQ later, then numbers you are looking at will be misleading. Additionally, default force footprint sizes will also be misleading.

(3) This forces us to think of our dettachments first and initially. Deattaching units once orders have been given and plans are in motion can be very disruptive.

(4) {I had more reasons when I first wrote this, but I cannot remember them now. Oh, well ...}

Below is an example of a conceptual plan I have for a battle. My goal is to clear away Allied forces from along the Canal. Let's look at how I implement with the HTTR interface.


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Post #: 114
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 4:05:07 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


In constructing a plan, we usually have two class of units that we give orders to: individual units and forces. Individual units tend be heavy (support) weapons such as: arty, ATGs, light flak, ... Also, we can consider single unit recon as part of this class. Forces tend to be battalions, brigades, regiments, divisions, ...

Working "bottom up", we will start with individual units.

However, before we do, let me highlight some important interface tools that will be a great aid to us:

(1) The command bar - this will let us know who we have given order to.

(2) Filters - this will allow us to find specific types of units, HQs, who is waiting for orders, and review our plan's implementation.

Below we see an image of a unit's command bar before and after given orders. We'll use that to check off whether we have ordered a particularly unit or not.


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Post #: 115
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 4:06:22 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


If you recall from my plan, I planned to deploy my heaving weapons to the cover the West Bank of the Canal on one flank of my attack.

In the screenshot below, I have set my filter, "8", to display gun units. This allows me to easily locate just the particular units I want and verify that I have given orders to each unit by checking the command bar.



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Post #: 116
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 4:08:48 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


Once I have given my orders, I can easily review what I have done by filtering, "=", to display units with orders. I can then group select all the units displayed to see their individual orders.

Besides reviewing the orders given already, this can be a very useful technique for fine tuning your orders. As you know, I am trying to do a good job of covering the West Bank of the Canal with heavy weapons. However, when giving individual orders, it is hard to remember exactly where you placed each final waypoint.

You can display all orders here at once like I have done. Then, you can move individual waypoints and adjust parameters. Thus, you can get good coverage and fine tune the implementation. BUT REMEMBER, DO NOT DELETE OR ADD ANY WAYPOINTS AS ALL HIGHLIGHTED UNITS WILL BE REGROUPED TOGETHER AS A SINGLE FORCE!!!


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Post #: 117
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 4:26:51 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


After giving orders to individual units, you then move on to giving orders to forces. Again, you should work "bottom-up". So, choose the lowest level of force organization with which to start. (for example, if you plan to issue orders to some single battalions, then do this before brigades)

The "2" filter for HQ units is most useful for this step. This basically puts all your command units (and the chain of command) in front of you. Of course, if you want to do more than just create separate task forces, but also rebalance forces (like segregate armor and infantry forces), then you may need work with all units displayed.

So, below you see that I have filtered just HQ units to display and have selected my armored force for the attack. I will order them to a pre-attack deployment (defend) to the North of the engagement area.


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Post #: 118
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 4:28:28 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


If you recall from my conceptual plan, I entended to use my infantry to drive the Allies from the woods overlooking the East Bank of the Canal and take up defensive positions along the tree line.

Below, I still have the filter set for HQ units. I have also enabled the small icon option, "~", to further reduce clutter. I have issued the attack orders to the various infantry brigades to clear out the woods and I have collectively highlighted them so that you can see it.


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Post #: 119
RE: Tips thread - 2/25/2004 4:29:22 AM   
Tzar007


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From MarkShot:


So, we are all done. At this point, you should use the "-" filter, units without orders, to check that no one is still waiting for orders. If there is anyone still waiting for orders, well, you have messed up along the way.

Otherwise, you can use "=" filter, units with orders, to review the complete implementation of your plan. That is what you see below.


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