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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing

 
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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/3/2017 9:39:16 PM   
marksdoran

 

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OK so scenario #3 presented some more challenges; for me at least.

Right off the bat, the first time I entered the scenario it put me in the game on the RED side. Total air assets: 5 Cessna's. So far as I recall I just selected the scenario from the usual dialog list and when the briefing popped up I read through it and then used the enter scenario button on that window. After mucking about disoriented for a few minutes and looking for a "switch sides" option, I gave up and reloaded the scenario. This time it put me in on the BLUE side (i.e. Soviet equipment) with the expected air assets and the target base icon rendered in red. Not sure what happened there. OK, on to the real work...

So after reading through the extensive and helpful briefing, I agreed mentally with the advice to send out the recce pod equipped jet first. Which is fine but...how does one do that in game mechanics terms??

I recall setting up a patrol mission for scenario #2 to find the target building. This you can do with the airbase target (I just did a "define area" to cover the base and a small surrounding area). The MR jet dutifully takes off and flies over there (showing the two sensor "pies" out along the 3-9 line). However, I could not see any detection messages in the log and I could not see any change in the information about the target base components either. That leaves me with the question: OK, how does the recce bird help you figure out which parking areas have aircraft on them -- how do I set up for the recce bird to see that and how will such information be reported, as in: where do I go in the UI and how to see that sort of thing?? I left the patrol in place over the target area for perhaps 40 minutes of game time...so far as I can tell for no useful result at all. I think there needs to be a bit more guidance in the instructions to link the ideas of "send the recon aircraft out first" and "recon aircraft can help you figure out where aircraft are parked".

Now the patrol loitering at 36k feet over a target for more than a half hour that would normally be heavily defended for made me think...

There's no way that IRL anyone would set up a patrol like this for reconnaissance over an airbase. More like a [stealthy] drone would be used and/or real time satellite intelligence but given the older equipment in this scenario those are probably not contemporaneously reasonable to assume. So how would one use a Fencer with a recce pod on something like an airbase?? From what I've read it would more likely be a quick one-pass-haul-*ss kind of approach. So I thought: OK, let me try again only make the Fencer do a strike/ASuW mission so it might follow that kind of an in-and-out profile. I tried that with the RED airbase objects selected as the target list. Of course this kind of mission doesn't take off at all (wrong loadout I presume??). I manually launched it and it took off and then instantly landed.

Net result: neither approach to deploying the recce bird seemed to work in that I got no better information than just looking at the initial state of the map. So what's wrong here?? Am I expecting too much in imagining that I'd get new information from using a recce bird?? Am I just not using that asset correctly?? Have I missed something in the UI that would give me said extra info if I just knew where to look??

Given that the advice in the set up briefing is to send the reconnaissance sortie out first, which seems like a very sound game plan, and my inability to make that work apparently, I feel like I'm blocked on getting anywhere with this whole scenario more or less before I get out of the gate.

May I have a little shove in the right direction, please?? Thanks!

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/3/2017 9:45:02 PM   
Gunner98

 

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quote:

quick one-pass-haul-*ss


This is the way to do it. Let me check it out and see if something is wrong.

B

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/3/2017 9:55:25 PM   
Gunner98

 

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OK so things seem to be working well. My Fencer at 400ft AGL at about 5 miles out ID'd all the units on the base as being undamaged (OK the strike has not gone in yet) and it ID'd at 8:21:39 2 Cessna 337s on one of the parking spots




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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/3/2017 9:56:31 PM   
Gunner98

 

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In a close up view you can see which parking space it is - you only see 2 of them and you suspect more so they are probably under cover in the hanger.




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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/3/2017 10:02:19 PM   
marksdoran

 

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OK, so already you are doing something different than I tried with either a patrol or a [bad] strike mission for the recce sortie. Are you launching it manually and just plotting a course for it??

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/3/2017 10:44:28 PM   
Gunner98

 

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quote:

Are you launching it manually and just plotting a course for it??


yup, and you see the detail by selecting the airbase or if you go into unit mode (Keypad 9)

I'll put something in the brief

b

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/3/2017 11:09:26 PM   
marksdoran

 

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OK, that sounds like a good idea. Since this scenario is zoomed in on using the mission editor, I got fixated there and stuck as a result. If I did others might too I guess.

Just to confirm: there's no way to use the mission editor to have a single jet sortie that does the one-pass style recon, correct??

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/3/2017 11:30:22 PM   
Gunner98

 

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quote:

Just to confirm: there's no way to use the mission editor to have a single jet sortie that does the one-pass style recon, correct??


Well I didn't say that. You can do it - Support mission, Radars On, Set the points around where you want to go, set the altitude, and you should be good to go. You can do it as a single loop or as a continuous loop.

B

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/3/2017 11:56:28 PM   
marksdoran

 

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Ah, I see. That wasn't obvious. A support mission uses reference points but not to make an area so much as a path to follow. BTW, using that approach one does not need to light up the radars (I noticed that the Cessna detection was down to the 5nm max range side looking cameras, not the radar sensors).

OK, now I see how that works, on to the actual fun...thanks for the steer.

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/4/2017 4:42:00 AM   
marksdoran

 

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Once I got over the above mentioned issue with making a recon mission work I started to have much more fun with scenario #3 :)

Feedback...

I like the way the briefing is arranged, reviewing the target and then the assets to hand and then giving you a hand with the first couple of mission add suggestions. I think it's well judged, in terms of balance between spoon feeding to get you going and then making you think a bit about how to make the most of your loadouts.

I ended up making a support mission for the recon flight and setting the station altitude for that manually. This worked out well. However...

The one general suggestion I have for this one still comes back to the recon mission. It occurs to me that in an ideal world you want recon results in time to brief aircrews on their targets before they leave the ground. Taking the approach of staggering the flight active times by a minute between each and leaving them all active results in a mad rush by strike flights that end up outstripping the recon bird. Strike flights defaulting to 580kts dash speed while the recon bird flies at a more moderate 480kts by default. Long story short, first time through my strike flights found the Cessnas well before the recon sortie got in camera range.

On a re-run I went back and let the recon flight have a clear 15 minute head start -- very rough timing so that, give or take, the recon flight turned for home a couple of minutes before the flight tasked to hit parking areas took off. I used the editor to reach into that mission, originally set to attack all three parking areas, and deleted from the target list all but the one reported to have the Cessnas [BTW, the briefing doesn't mention that you can use the contact report button for the parking area and see the Cessnas under "hosted units" tab -- might that be worth adding??].

I know you probably don't want to get into the whole intricacy of coordinating Time-on-Target for multiple flights at this stage but I do feel like if the suggestion is to run the recon sortie first, some consideration must be given to spacing out the missions so that the recon sortie can be successful (i.e. be the one to find the Cessnas [and might it not be possible to assign that discovery some points reward perhaps??]).

First time I tried to get the recon sortie on target ahead of the strikes I had not understood how the active/inactive settings in the mission editor work at all. I changed the active times and the flights went red with a 'D' but I wanted them to take off, so I made them all active with the drop down above the time entry area... That didn't do what I wanted at all since when I started the clock the same mad rush to launch the entire set of flights ensued with no attention paid to the delays I dialed in to the editor. I'd recommend a more complete discussion of the association between the "active" choice in the "add new mission" dialog and the active/inactive drop down along with the active/deactive date & time gadgets to avoid the confusion I ran into and the worry that anything red means it's not going to work at all (versus the reality in this case being that the missions will kick off just fine and red is more of a "just not yet" message).

I redid the mission and this time I went back and set all the missions with active times set to more than 15 minutes past 8am to "inactive" and ran it again. Ah -- much better. Recon bird takes off does the solo fly-by and then the rest of the air armada follows on [my plan was roughly: blind the radar, hit the runway access to stop counter launch, runway denial and then missions to mop up the rest of the targets].

One trouble with this approach was that the pop-ups for this mission seem tied to timing and if you mess with the mission timings as I did, the pop-ups are in the wrong places along the timeline. Not sure what to suggest about that but if you do maintain the suggestion to have the recon flight go first then I think you might want to consider adjusting the relative placement on the timeline for the in-scenario pop-ups.

Phew -- I learned a lot from this one... So clearly it's a great tutorial exactly as it is already! :)


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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/4/2017 10:39:36 AM   
Gunner98

 

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Thanks again

Will adopt those suggestions.

Have been playing this game and almost nothing else from the release date in 2014, so I do forget the issues that new plyers might have - appreciate your perspective.

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/4/2017 10:03:25 PM   
marksdoran

 

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So, on to Strike #4...

This one is pretty straightforward it seems. Follow the instructions and the right magic will occur. Couple of minor observations only to add for this one:

The briefing mentions S-400's but I guess at least the western SAM is of type SA-10b (S-300)...perhaps the use of 400 is meant to simulate fuzzy intel data though(?) -- might be a feature :)

The advice talked about watching the Harrier pop-up to 12k altitude, release and then drop down. I'd plotted a manual path and set the manual override for terrain following at 200 feet. Sure enough after the first LGB release the jets ducked down again. Couple of points...

I'm not clear why but the Harriers would not apparently fly below 400' AGL -- is there a limit to how low you can make them fly?? Is that platform specific or are all jets similarly limited?? [yes, I know 200' in a fast jet is pretty "sporty", especially in significant terrain, but I was trying to see how low the AI would get comfortably...apparently 400' AGL ;)]. Might be useful to cover that if there are rules of thumb that apply to going low and fast.

The other thing was that after dropping the second LGB, the Harriers bounced up to default altitude of 36000' -- I wasn't paying close attention I guess. Now, if the tutorial intends to catch you out like that -- and I'm wondering if that's the idea and that the fact that the pop-up regarding "vampires" exists suggests that -- mission accomplished...the siren sure got my attention :) At any rate, it might be an idea to add an explanation of what aircraft default to when they run out of weapons and waypoints if there's consistent behavior that one should expect.

Love LGBs -- much more satisfying to have a decent number of hits and few weapon malfunctions (the EO weps in scenario #3 seem rather fragile in that way).

Similar observation about scoring...perhaps assign points for each of the target buildings rather than 100% for the RTB?? Scoring isn't a big deal but since the game UI provides that as a way to measure incremental progress it seems [marginally??] better to use it if practical.

One other thing: this scenario was very fast to play -- perhaps 20 minutes. That made me wonder if it might be an idea to add a rough estimate of wall clock time likely needed to play through the scenarios?? One of the nice things about them so far is that they feel fast and good use of time but C:MANO scenarios can be quite long (the original air to air tutorial for example sucked up a lot more of my time, partly for lack of structure and support through the process but still...] -- I guess I'm thinking that advertising the relatively quick play-through time on these might be encouraging to new players(?).

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/4/2017 10:59:30 PM   
Gunner98

 

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Thanks again, should be able to get to these next week.

Very helpful reports.

B

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/6/2017 7:27:30 PM   
marksdoran

 

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#5 peeling the onion... OK that took a lot longer to run through. Very interesting and the first of these that definitely felt like a challenge.

First... The brief mentions that the F-18C with a SEAD loadout is range challenged. Boy howdy. With the loadout profile and just using a mission to strike at the radar sites and limiting ordnance for that to the CBUs (as recommended), the southern radar site is completely out of range! That's kind of a surprise. I let the mission run with a single a/c, intending to hit the radar and then skip on to attack the SA-2 with HARMs but even before releasing the CBUs the Hornet hits BINGO and RTB's. Hmm... Do I need to discover this by trial and error or should the set up talk me through not choosing that mission option?? I tried it again with an attempt to manual override the flight profile -- so set higher alt for greater range on the transit but that merely results in 2000' AGL even though I set 36k in the F2 dialog...that seems, unexpected. I could not figure out a way to change the flight profile that seems to originate with the loadout...fair enough, data has to come from somewhere but it looks like the loadout-derived flight profile cannot be changed or overridden if you just let the AI go on a mission -- is that right??

Upshot, I redid the mission and switched to micro-managing the SEAD Hornets and they dutifully clobbered the radar sites and SA-2's in sequence as I wanted.

I followed that up with the Prowlers. These I set on a support mission with a couple of ref points each -- one on the northwest flank and one to the southwest. Continuous loop on the two points with the nearest (to the target airfield) just outside the SA-2 range ring. I set the EMCON so they'd emit on station -- that's pretty neat to be able to pre-plan that. I notice that you don't get any kind of indication of area jammed...I mention that because I know from other contexts that sometimes jammers are directional...if the EA-6B's jam mostly to the sides then I probably wasted them by giving them tracks that were radials from the target base. In other words, if it matters how they are oriented, it might be a good idea to say that in the instructions.

Ah yes, the TARPS mission. First send one in high -- I think 19k was the advised alt. You are also told to pass very close to the base so the TARPS sensors can see. You are also told to have the Tomcat rip by the base in full afterburner. First problem, on attempt one the Tomcat hit bingo before getting within 15 miles of the airfield and RTB'd. It seems like there's a timing issue with the pop-up that advises using the burners and whether or not I launched that mission at the "right" time to make it possible to hit the burners right when it says to do that. OK, restart and use the burner but nearer in to the base this time...

Next problem... The SA-8 on the eastern edge of the airfield downs the Tomcat. OK, maybe that's fair. But, to get a pop-up that says words like "that didn't go so well might want to rethink and try again" seems like bait and switch...I did what the pop-ups recommend and then it scolded me for not being very smart about it. That was..."interesting" :)

The TARPS sortie before it bravely gave it's all did reveal SAMs and AAA (and not a few parked in the open MiG's -- ah juicy targets!! ;)). With the outer layer of defenses gone seemed like time to send in some standoff weapon equipped jets to surpress these shorter range defenses. Given that Shilka's and Gecko's are nominally mobile that seems like a job for mavericks and maybe skippers since I'm a bit short of AGM shooters.

This is where I got my biggest surprise. Not from the tutorial perhaps but from the game mechanics. I had never heard of SAMs like an SA-8 being able to target and shoot down AGMs. However, that's what happened...the SA-8 sites shot down every single maverick and every single skipper and then the pair of SLAMs (which I diverted from mopping up the SA-2 sites when I saw the AGMs fail to even reach the SA-8's). YIKES!!

While it seems counter intuitive, it ended up that the GBU equipped jets were the best SAM/AAA suppressors available to me. Apparently the SAMs and AAA can target anything "AGM" but not dumb bombs or GBUs [although to be fair, it's possible that by the time I got around to plinking the SAM and AAA groups with GBUs they might have been more or less out of ammo).

At any rate, if this is typical of how the mechanics work then advice about using the Hornets with AGMs to deal with "surprises" the TARPS finds is at least based on my experience here futile. Am I just doing this wrong and there is some way to make the AGMs more effective?? [perhaps referenced back to the OECM orientation question above...perhaps with different jammer coverage the AGMs can make it through??). 100% miss rate for these AGMs seems harsh though; and more to the point makes the scenario more difficult to prosecute in the way the instructions suggest.

I ended up using my GBU equipped Intruders and Hornets to clear the SAM/AAA threat leaving the HDGP equipped intruderss and CBU equipped Hornets to plaster the parking areas which netted a gratifying total of destroyed MiG's. [BTW, the DB reports the Mk 82 "Snakeye" as a Low Drag General Purpose bomb...I always thought the snakeye tail kit made it High Drag like the AIR ballute tail kit, no??].

Lest that all sound like bad news and complaint, I really enjoyed playing through this one. I think it also illustrates that I'm learning enough of the mechanics to improvise now. For example I figured out how to temporarily detach a Prowler from it's support mission to have it use it's HARM and then put it back on the mission for continued OECM duties. Plus I changed a few mission parameters on the fly to see if those changes (moved ref points, adjusted planned speeds and altitudes, etc.) took effect, which mostly they seem to in predictable ways (the manual F2 settings not really overriding the loadout profile notwithstanding). In other words, I'm getting comfortable and finding my way around and starting to grapple with strategy and tactical considerations more than game mechanics. The tutorials are working their magic apparently! :)


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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/7/2017 6:35:39 AM   
fortyporkpies


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Thank you this is an excellent resource!

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/7/2017 7:02:45 AM   
kch

 

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I have now played 1 through 4 and I must say that it has been a lot of fun and I have definitely learnt a few extra tricks. Thanks and keep up the good work.

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/12/2017 2:25:57 AM   
Gunner98

 

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Marksdoran

Some fair points in the #5 review, going to scrub it a bit. Save the surprises for scenarios not tutorials

I've cleaned up 1-4 and will work on 5 tomorrow AM.

Has anyone had a chance to go at #6 yet? If its too difficult I can tone it down but I just want to get it right before moving onto #7.

Thanks for your feedback so far.

B

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/12/2017 2:30:33 AM   
Gunner98

 

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quote:

Mk 82 "Snakeye" as a Low Drag General Purpose bomb


Your right a Snakeye is high drag. The 'low drag' comment is in the description which in this case looks like a Wiki quote. Like the photo's the descriptions are quite helpful, but they are user created not part of the game. They are generally correct but if something looks wonky its usually because of that. If you find something wrong in the DB entire itself the Devs are good at fixing it if you have references. Not sure how to get the descriptions altered.

B

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/12/2017 3:57:50 AM   
Drivingguy

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Gunner98

Has anyone had a chance to go at #6 yet? If its too difficult I can tone it down but I just want to get it right before moving onto #7.



I must be blind, but I can't find a #6

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/12/2017 6:36:21 AM   
marksdoran

 

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I'm working on #6 now. As a result of 'expertise' built in the previous tutorials, I'm building up layers of plan and missions to execute that plan; sort of piece meal, dry running a piece at a time. I've done the whole scenario a couple of times "to the end" now and I have to say that I haven't achieved a victory yet but I am learning still. I did figure out a way to knock out the SA-10. I did not figure out a way to do that and close the runway before the Typhoons get airborne and, as predicted, that eventuality spells disaster.

So this isn't a complete report -- I'll try to do a more thorough job after a couple more tries -- but I would say that the degree of difficulty is probably pretty good in that this clearly requires a good plan and solid execution skills to get to the objective without getting your head handed to you but not so tricky as to be impossible. At least that's my perception so far.

The biggest challenge remaining for me at this point is to get clobber the 1) SA-10 _and_ 2) close the runway in time to avoid enemy fighter launches. I've got a handle on #1 but not #2 yet. I think the only thing preventing me from achieving the second at this point is properly timing the launch of the follow up strikes. In other words, it's not an issue with the scenario so much as it's more demanding of me in terms of coordinating those second wave strikes in mission time sequence. If there are other assets that I haven't discovered yet that will blast the bombers I want to send in next (right after the SA-10 is dealt with), then I may have to change my mind about degree of difficulty.

I'd add that by this point in the tutorial sequence personally I would expect to face a pretty big challenge and 'Dodging the Bullet' certainly matches that description. I feel like I'm learning a lot and really starting to have more fun! :)

Stepping outside the frame of any one of the tutorials alone, it's clear that a _lot_ of expertise and effort has gone into building this series of tutorials so far...kudos on a job very well done.

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/12/2017 9:13:54 AM   
Gunner98

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Drivingguy

I must be blind, but I can't find a #6



Post #54 above: http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/fb.asp?m=4320217

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/12/2017 9:20:13 AM   
Gunner98

 

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quote:

I may have to change my mind about degree of difficulty.


Hmm, that may be required. Thanks I'll wait and see how you do. I think kbrown1950 was in about the same position when he last checked in.

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/13/2017 2:39:52 PM   
kbrown1950


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yes, that pretty much sums up my experience with #6. Gunner98, can you suggest any simple scenarios that might give me more experience at airfield destruction before coming back for another try at #6?

_____________________________


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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/13/2017 4:50:41 PM   
Gunner98

 

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Will probably back this one off a bit. Thanks for your feedback.

You may want to try 'Uncle Marks Tutorials' Its been a while since I looked at them but there may be something there. There are probably several more but I cannot recall at the moment.

B

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/13/2017 9:34:01 PM   
schweggy

 

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Back in tutorial #3 Gunner went though a number of scenarios on attacking and rendering ineffective an airbase. It's all about the weapons selections. If you don't have an good selection to crater runways, go for aircraft shelters or hangers. Or wipe out ammo and/or fuel. Likewise with terrain hugging flights. Sometimes you have to "pop-up" at the last second and maybe manual control is the only way to achieve this.

I'm a longtime Harpoon/COMMANO user and I always learn something with a good tutorial.

Gunner, the degree of difficulty with tutorial #6 is not that bad. It's a little complex, but should be a "learning" type scenario. IMO.

BTW I did render the airbase "degraded" but with a few losses, mostly due to Bourbon.

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RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/14/2017 1:28:10 AM   
marksdoran

 

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OK, I think I finally did a decent run through on #6. The airfield is definitely closed. Punchline: yes, this one might be set up a tad too difficult. To explain and review...

First couple of times I paid a lot of attention to the parts of the mission brief where it talks about topology. Lots of trying to fly the ARM shooters and glide bomb shooters into the lee of the ridges to the south of the base and keep them out of site unless setting up an attack run.

Eventually, given the time it took to knock out the SA-10 some of those flights were low on fuel before going winchester. Not ideal. At this point I really gave up worrying about the terrain and went back into the mode of treating this as a blue water, no air-to-air threat scenario, I.O.W., using higher altitudes and ignoring LOS concealment concerns. [I suspect that if there were units placed to guard low level attack on that "road" up the left flank, my eventual approach rendered them a non-factor in the game...I never did detect anything placed in that area...more about detection to follow. I'm not sure if making the assumption of -- temporary -- air superiority is a "cheat" on my part...I wasn't flagrantly trying to ignore all the setup and reference points and briefing materials talking about the topology and so forth; it just seemed in the end like that was more of a distraction, that I didn't need to pay heed to it in order to prosecute the scenario]

For subsequent runs I changed the basic support flight strategy and put the AWACS and the ELINT birds to the flanks and then had the OECM jet fly a racetrack astride the up-the-gut route. It doesn't talk about this in the briefing but I ended up digging in the DB to find the S-300 to determine effective range and made sure that the OECM especially was set up running just south of the reach of that SA-10 -- to do this I set up the race track ref points well south and walked them up Northwards a bit once I'd lobbed a couple of glide bombs at the base to draw out the SA-10 and triangulate that better. I bought in the ARM shooters and glide bomb shooters up the middle and then spread them wider once north of the OECM track, making sure the latter was doing the JAM thing.

For the SA-10 I ended up using a volley of cruise missiles aimed at it and followed those with most of my ARMs close at the heels of the cruise missiles. After several run throughs I decided that firing the ARMs in particular from directions more than 60 degrees apart seemed to work better. [I've read that SA-10s have more trouble with multi-axis attacks and perhaps that's modeled here it might of course be placebo and I just got luckier with the dice with later iterations]. At any rate, in the last run-through I clobbered the SA-10 to the point it stopped firing seemingly because it fixated on the cruise missiles and left a fair number of the ARMs unscathed...I see both radar vehicles and 3 TEL's lost in the scoring log so I judge that group suppressed. I tagged both search radars with surplus ARMs (it took three to get both systems) after this -- there seemed to be no particular penalty for not going after those first (and in previous tries, attempting to go after the search radars just seemed to make the SA-10 guys mad and more effective :( ).

While all this was going on, I learned from previous attempts that time being of the essence on laundry day that I needed to get the follow on strikes in the air and moving north. Between launching the support flights and the SA-10 hunters though I sortied a recon jet. After seeing the heroics of the tomcats from the earlier tutorial I had an expectation that this would give me intelligence on what if anything might be lurking around the fixed elements on the airbase. I flew this over the airbase, directly overhead and over the SA-10 and radar sites...twice! The default mission profile for this is hi-hi-hi and I left that alone, assuming that it was set appropriately to be effective. I found NOTHING with the recon mission. OK, great, bring in the three strike flights of Fantans and let them rain their toys on the base.

Ahead of the Fantans, and being mindful of the time and the EF2000 threat I used their remaining glide bombs to make a start on the 4 runway access points. Moderate effect. Next in were the LGB shooters, one weapon on the runway access points and the other aimed at buildings and other hard(er) targets. These were nice and effective, moderate or heavy damage to all runway access points with 3 of 4 on fire...drive your EF2000 through that! ;)

It was all going so well... until the second wave of Fantans comes in to hit the two runways, one flight of 4 to hit each runway. These guys attack profile takes them down very low to deliver the Durandal equivalents. I'm not worried though because the recon flight saw nothing and the LGB flight added only that it noted EF2000's parked on several of the pads.

The Fantans sweep in low...and get murdered. Up pop several AAA units (although none fired), and a Rapier and one other unidentified SAM and, count 'em 24 Igla MANPAD rounds fired. Only one Fantan got as far as weapons release. It's nearest miss distance was over 400 feet and it collected an SA-18 up the tail pipe for its trouble.

Round about this time the remainder of my cruise missiles arrived to come down on the various parking areas...not as effective as I'd hoped but then I guess if they'd have had area denial payloads instead of unitary warheads it might have been better for this purpose. Credited with only 3 EF2000 kills on the ground; still that's $300M assuming average pricing so not too bad.

So where does that leave me?? Well I left the scenario running well past the end of laundry hour and no Typhoons sortied (and they sure as heck did when I had less good success in earlier attempts! ;)). I think that means that the airbase is effectively closed. Mission accomplished?? Probably. There's no score to indicate that so it's possible I didn't trip the right event somehow(?).

I think on balance there are two main themes that I'd say could maybe use some extra help for this scenario. One is instruction oriented and one is scenario config.

Firstly: If you get fixated with the SA-10 hunt as I did initially, there is a very good chance that the Typhoons will lift off and wreck your entire day. I think in the blurb something else is needed to emphasize timing and coordinate of the waves of attacks needed to peel back defenses and then confine the air-to-air threat. One hour's grace period is clearly enough since I managed it in the end but the timing is pretty tight. Now the scenario taught me that quite effectively at the cost of a couple of run-through attempts that didn't go well. Perhaps that is in fact a good way to teach the lesson...I don't especially feel upset to come by the understanding this way. However, for time efficiency's sake it might be better to give a slightly stronger hint that having waves of attack with different purposes launched from your base such that take off times and transit times don't stretch into the time window after the Typhoon crews have hung their shirts out to dry might be in order.

Secondly, and perhaps of more significance, the business of recon and the implications thereof. The brief talks about defense in layers and more or less tells you that there are SHORAD units somewhere to find. As mentioned above, I flew the recon bird over the base twice and found nothing. The glide bomb shooters (up high) and LGB shooters (releases at medium altitude) didn't spot anything either. Leaving the Fantans to get pasted. If there's a more effective way to use recon so that you get a hint of the SHORAD units and can follow that "plink with glide bombs or cruise missiles" advice, I think that needs to be spelled out. Using the recon asset following it's default mission profile was a total non-event.

[at the time I was playing the scenario I did check the sensor descriptions for the recon jets and noted the 5nm range...that more or less why I flew them direct overhead the base... What I'm wondering now is whether that range is in fact slant range...in which case overflight at moderately high altitude might make stuff at the surface largely out of reach?? Dunno...just a thought.
And if that's right then perhaps flying them over at 20k feet (or less) might have yielded better results?? As you can tell, their complete ineffectiveness is still puzzling me so obviously I at least need more hints in the instructions to get value out of these assets.]

Overall, I liked it as a scenario. Knowing what I know now, I think using slightly less weapons on the SA-10 (in the end I had half a dozen or so missiles hit that group) and preserving some stand-off non-ARM weapons for the SHORAD units I'm pretty sure that I could get the runway denial sorties in and out without too much pain...except for the MANPADs. I'm not clear at all how you'd deal with that threat. Net effect the combination of those MANPADs and the ineffective recon efforts make this scenario just a little too hard as-is. I'm guessing I can be shoved in the right direction with the recon with a little more directive content in the brief. I still don't know what to do about those MANPADs though if the 200' AGL delivery height must hold for the runway denial munitions.

Again, I hope you can tell from the above that I took away more useful lessons from the scenario already as it stands right now. And had a lot of fun doing it!

(in reply to schweggy)
Post #: 86
RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/14/2017 8:17:49 AM   
kch

 

Posts: 166
Joined: 12/31/2014
Status: offline
I also just wanted to voice my appreciation for the tutorial scenarios. I am on scenario 5 and having good fun.

Any tips on taking out the SA-8 & Shilka combinations? I tried with Skippers, Mavericks and SLAMs and I still have Shilkas functioning. Basically the 8 SLAMS, 4 Mavericks and 8 Skippers "only" took out 4 SA-8 TELs and 3 Shilkas. I dont dare to try to use CBUs on the AAA. Should a try a mid height Mk82 bomb run?

br

(in reply to marksdoran)
Post #: 87
RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/14/2017 3:54:47 PM   
marksdoran

 

Posts: 42
Joined: 7/7/2017
Status: offline
quote:


Any tips on taking out the SA-8 & Shilka combinations?

This may be cheating in the sense of gaming the system more than following realistic doctrine (or perhaps I just don't know enough to know that this is in fact realistic...) but what I discovered is that gravity bombs can't be shot down by the SA-8 and AAA while all the guided missiles you have available can be shot down. Using laser guided bombs was much, MUCH more effective for SAM/AAA suppression than the guided missiles were.

(in reply to kch)
Post #: 88
RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/14/2017 6:07:27 PM   
kch

 

Posts: 166
Joined: 12/31/2014
Status: offline
Thanks for the tip. It seems a bit odd that it should be like that. I guess it could be a thing of the game. I was also getting a bit frustrated with all my ordinance getting shot down by relatively old as weapons.

(in reply to marksdoran)
Post #: 89
RE: Strike Tutorials - testing - 8/14/2017 6:46:30 PM   
Gunner98

 

Posts: 4553
Joined: 4/29/2005
From: The Great White North!
Status: offline
I'm going to take the SA-8 out for the next version. Will put something a little less capable in its place.

B

(in reply to kch)
Post #: 90
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