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Arctic Tsunami 4.2 NATO - 10/30/2018 6:00:03 PM   
Cpt Black

 

Posts: 17
Joined: 10/17/2018
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OK ready to go with the newer version of the scenario. I did a lot of prep work using the wrong one so this.. shouldn't be.. hard? OK it's a lot different. No F-15's at all. No Tornados. Ooof, I was already going to have to ration tankers with 8, now down to 4. But, to compensate a squadron of F-35As. To decompensate I'm missing a whole European SAG. I hear there is trouble in the Baltic as well, so they must have gone there. Some more changes but all in all it looks good.

Some weird doctrine going on here. All side units are set to Radars and ECM on? No, I have three dozen stealth fighters. No only that, they have the best passive sensor suite in the game. So reset that. Set no tanker for you! I'll ration who can use them, but it's pretty obvious it's got be the QE's F-35s. Lots of missions that have to be deleted, two, however, are really bizarre. So while I hate to be the bearer of bad news, here's a doozy.

There are two squadrons of F-35 fighters on the QE. The first is loaded with Paveway IVs. A sensible choice for asploding things on the ground, a bit harder to use against suface ships, but the F-35 loadout is a bit limited, so you use what you have. These aircraft are assigned to an AAW CAP. Now, I know there is some famous footage from WWII where that one bomber dropped a bomb on the other becoming the first and only in history to earn the title "Iron Bomb Fraticide Ace", but in some military circles this is not considered one of the preffered methods of air-to-air warfare.

The second squadron is, of course, more suited to the task, bristling (internally) with AMRAAMS. They are assigned to an anti-surface warfare patrol. If there is a thing more futile than trying to down other aircraft with laser-guided bombs, it just might be trying to sink a battle-cruiser with AMRAAMS. I mean it's never actually been tried before, but...

So, if you want to play the Russian side, nows your chance before it's fixed!

I boggled for a few seconds at the RING OF DEATH surrounding the QE. I'm sure all those points have a purpose when the computer plays the side, but way too hard for me to figure out. Looks like a lot of work went into it though. Built my normal cone-shaped ASW box in front of the QE then fixed spots for CAPS and AEW. Rinse/repeat with the SAG and solo DDG. I remembered the point about the subs randomizing so I let that happen.

Now that I'm thinking about subs, what to do? We know there are boomers loose, but the North Sea is a big place. I have to withhold a large portion of my fixed-wing ASW aircraft because I don't have a lot of ASuW shooters available. Some Falcons, sure, but ugh, 450 nm radius with two Penguins? I found the Tonados, so there are ten or so of those and were quickly armed with ALARMS. I guess it's the Typhoons that are actually missing. So three squadrons of 4th gen fighters traded for one 5th gen. The F-15E isn't a stellar naval strike platform so I intended to use it in the air-to-air role.

All this to say I simply can't use all of those fixed-wing sub hunters to hunt subs. I checked the loadouts sensors etc and decided to keep the P-8s as shooters. It's possible I'll miss a sub that way, but I really need the extra punch of carrying twice as many SLAMERs. I decide that rather than searching for a needle in a swimming pool I'd take the classic approach, plug the GIUK gap. It probably won't win a lot of points, but it's in the spirit of the scenario, and those subs do have to come through there eventually. The DDG, it's helo and three P-3's patrol between Greenland and Iceland. Two more patrols consisting of three more P-3's (each) and one of the two subs who lost the RNG lotto and ended up furthest south make up those. Another fixed wing patrol will sanitize the area I intend to send the CVBG and SAG.

I had no idea how to set up CAPS in Norway. There is not a single fighter in the UK. Three broken down Tornados and some support planes. I hedged a little and did put a couple of F-16s in the south at first, then realized what a mistake that was. If anything really happened down there they'd run out of fuel long before doing anything. If God had meant for an F-16 to fly, she would have given it real fuel tanks. Thing needs an Eco-Boost or something. Anyway, that's where I stood when I actually started the game.

My first play was going to be a stealth trap up North. Two F-16s took off on patrol, radars blasting. Meanwhile 4 F-35s took up station quite silently 40 miles to the east and waited. I saw Mig-31s up, but they didn't come. I saw lots of stuff up, but nothing went after the F-16s. Finally four aircraft lifted off and actually headed beyond the no-fly zone. Fencers after a radar station, this should be easy. Ugh! "Realistic Aircraft Damage". That means you really do have to drop a Paveway IV on one to shoot it down. Three of the 4 took multiple hits to bring down. It took 15 AMRAAMS fired from 30 miles away to kill 4 aircraft.

Well I'd definitely hoped to do better, but no losses, and a bit of knowledge gained. I made a decision. Bare-nekkid England or no, I needed to move more hardware north and fast. If a strike does come from the south I've lied to myself convincingly that I'll handle it with the QE aircraft. So I checked the magazines up north, moved the appropriate fighters to where the vittles are and launched every AWACS and tanker to find new homes there.

At this point I think to check just what my air defenses are up there, and can't stop laughing. It's literally a bunch of Norwegian rednecks with four-wheel-drives and AMRAAMS on the back! I admit it's a clever way to re-gift all those AMRAAMS jettisoned by F-16s trying to save enough fuel to get home, but is it still an AAM if it's launched from a monster-truck? Or maybe they use fancy ski-jump-ramps like those crazy British blokes. Does Sven keep the engine warmed up at the bottom of the ramp while eagle-eyed Bjorn scans the skies?

"Sven, look! Russian aeroplane!"

"HOLD MY BEER!!"

I'm doomed.

To be continued...
Post #: 1
RE: Arctic Tsunami 4.2 NATO - 10/31/2018 12:40:05 PM   
Bert Blitzkrieg

 

Posts: 55
Joined: 12/15/2009
Status: offline
Interesting to read. Not your standard AAR

(in reply to Cpt Black)
Post #: 2
RE: Arctic Tsunami 4.2 NATO - 10/31/2018 1:40:51 PM   
Ancalagon451

 

Posts: 329
Joined: 1/4/2018
Status: offline
quote:

At this point I think to check just what my air defenses are up there, and can't stop laughing. It's literally a bunch of Norwegian rednecks with four-wheel-drives and AMRAAMS on the back! I admit it's a clever way to re-gift all those AMRAAMS jettisoned by F-16s trying to save enough fuel to get home, but is it still an AAM if it's launched from a monster-truck? Or maybe they use fancy ski-jump-ramps like those crazy British blokes. Does Sven keep the engine warmed up at the bottom of the ramp while eagle-eyed Bjorn scans the skies?

"Sven, look! Russian aeroplane!"

"HOLD MY BEER!!"




You almost made me spit my tea over the keyboard imagining that scene, and I'm still laughing while writing this.

Seriously speaking the NASAMS it's a fairly decent SHORAD and IRL has been favorably compared against the SA-11. So the points covered by it are going to have a nasty bite, if you manage to avoid those pesky Krypton missiles.

Of course there are gonna be exactly that: points, so I hope your batteries are well positioned.

Ancalagon

(in reply to Bert Blitzkrieg)
Post #: 3
RE: Arctic Tsunami 4.2 NATO - 10/31/2018 10:02:51 PM   
Cpt Black

 

Posts: 17
Joined: 10/17/2018
Status: offline
OK on to part two.

OK remember that moving everything North idea? I had eight F-35's in the air and on the move, fully armed with plenty of fuel and thought I'd take a peek at the area I'd begun to call "The Notch". Because of the no navigation zone over Finland and Sweden, Russian aircraft are forced to fly North from their bases, aroun the northernmost tip of Finland and into The Notch before heading back South where all the targets are. This creates a kill zone where NATO and Russian fighters clash.

I had actually sent one flight of two F-35s north ahead of time to reinforce the area, the others were following. I was still in EMCON everywhere, relying on the F-35s for intel, thus the original flight. I needed their sensors up there after the first group expended their missiles and returned to base. That first flight was a bit more west, out near the coast when the following group picked up a flight of Mig-31s. One of the reasons I decided to go all-in up north was I didn't want those Migs facing F-16s alone, and now was my chance. The larger group of F-35s came up from the southwest, the group of two from actually a bit Northwest (they were investigating a IL-38 contact up there, but a flight of Falcons was dispatched when it was clear he was alone). I reset EMCON on all these birds to reduce AMRAAM launch even futher, 25 miles now. It was a bit antsy and took a look and was surprised the target list included 6 Mig 31s and 4 Mig 27s as well. So not 6 but 10. I regained my resolve, vectored in the F-16 Cap and got a little closer. Finally when the first missile went out I quickly manually fired literally every missile the large group of F-35s had. When they were nearly to the target I went active on the other group of two F-35s, hoping to get in-flight corrections for the missiles and, oh hell, there's 6 Fencers in there too! Not 6 Mig-31, not 10 with the Flankers, but 16 aircraft in all. I launched a flight of 4 F-16s from Antoya, and a massive furball really started. Probably half of the fighters refuse to go down with a single hit, factor in the non-hits as well and you need a lot of missiles. It was completely one-sided, a Russian missile was fired when the radar lit up, but it was token resistance as just after that the swarm of missiles from the first group arrived. A few escaped but at least a dozen did not.

And thus began the next few hours. After that it was Backfires, then Blackjacks, then Backfires and Blackjacks. It was a constant struggle to find enough aircraft to send into The Notch to stop it all. Some bombers take 5 hits before finally going down. I had loaded, or were loading, almost two full squadrons of F-16s with Penguins so they were no use. F-35Bs started a steady stream to and from the QE (I had, fortunately, rearmed all of them for air-to-air, using missiles, not Paveways!) Finally the AWACS and tankers arrived and were moved even farther north, then the AWACS moved North and East again until it's radar could completely cover The Notch.

All the while I had been trying to reposition the Anzio SAG and the QE. I really wanted the QE a bit South and West of that big Tico and under it's SAM umbrella but it wasn't working. I freely admit I had read another AAR, and followed it's advice. I detached the Artic support ship and sent it to Iceland and poured on the speed in the SAG. Just now the surface fleets are shaping up as I want them. The Anzio SAG a bit North and East of the QE CVBG. If anything does get through The Notch it's going to have to go through a LOT to get that carrier.

And that leads us to collaborator-fish. Never heard of those? Highly trained by secret underwater Spetznaz scientests these fish are not fighting flounders, no sir. They are devious dolphins and secret sharks. Remember the Arctic? Please do, they were brave men. We'll have a moment of silence now..... She was sent to Reykjavic to await the end of hostilites. A simple course around the east side of the island to safety. Not 30 minutes after departing the SAG the trap was sprung! A goblin contact appeared dead on-course 50 miles from the Arctic. It couldn't have missed it. Being practical and not at all suicidal I simply re-routed the Arctic around the West side of Iceland. Problem solved. No, the goblin turned out to be Ivan's collaborating carp, and the Arctic ran right into a Russian Sierra lurking on it's new course. The only casualties thus far are caused by crack Russian marine-bioligists! Asymetrical warfare indeed.

As things stand now (as of this writing it was actually only 3 or so hours into the scenario) only 42 Russian aircraft have been downed and over 150 air-to-air missiles of all type have been expended. This is due to a couple of factors. Mainly the "realistic" aircraft damage model is a bit wonky. As I've said as many as five hits have been seen on a single aircraft before it is lost. The other is the terrain around the notch itself. It seems to allow the defensive aircraft a lot of cover to get into once the missiles start flying and they evade. I do think the game gives Blackjacks and Backfires quite a bit more credit for maneuverability than they deserve. The tactics have firmed up since that first big fight. The stealth fighters go in first, breaking up the formations and causing general mayhem and the Falcons follow, acting essentially as bomb trucks for the more lightly loaded Lightnings and hauling out the garbage. As a general rule everything it passive until the Falcons come in. No fighters have been lost.

The fallout from the Arctic treachery continued. I sent two additional aircraft from nearby patrols to hunt down the sub. It wasn't found immediately, but eventually it was located and sunk. The problem is the two aircraft I sent, (two others left their patrols under computer guidance), both ran out of fuel and crashed. This is quite strange. The only thing I can think of is that they did fuel calculations to the target and decided it was OK. When it took a bit to find the sub the fuel calculations went off? I saw this again an hour or so later when I sent a couple of Tornados after a surface contact. It was a good target when they took off, but they just couldn't locate it. They were only saved from fuel starvation because I sent them home manually and sent a tanker to meet them. This was, of course, after I gave that mission specific permission to use the tankers and they waived it off, resetting the WRA saying they didn't need them!

The Notch has now calmed down considerably. Occasionally a SU-33 CAP will come up from the Kusnetsov. About half have been shot down, another two or three went home with AMRAAMS sticking out the side (sigh). But the Kusnetsov has a secret. FROGGYFOOT INTERCEPTORS! That's right, after having enough of my tangling with their CAPS, they brought in the big guns and sent a pair of SU-25 trainers, really, trainers to intercept my F-35s (after thinking about it they may have been after the AWACS). I had to look up just what the A/A capability of an SU-25 was. It has a gun. If this had worked I was going to seriously think about loading up with AAMRAAMS and going after that Battlecruiser. It turned out about how you expect it did. There was one more strike group with about a dozen aircraft total escorted by a couple of those Mig-31s I'm so worried about. Three returned to base, the others are buried in The Notch.

The only thing keeping me from heading into Soviet territory is the formidable air defense there. I sent about 20 token TLAMs in there. Some even got close, some would have even hit except I can't keep the target locked down. I literally have it a hundred miles inside of AWACS ground radar range and every time a satellite gets a hit it bounces the target around even though I know where it is. Is there anyway to tell a guided weapon to NOT accept in-flight updates? That site doesn't move, yet it comes and goes.

Speaking of that S400 site, there are two that I know of, it intercepted a Penguin missile, launched and flying at 200 feet, from 180 miles away. Granted there were 16 missiles launched in three different groups and probably at least that many missiles expended trying to shoot them down (most just couldn't get there in time). Still, this anti-missile stuff is getting just a bit to crazy for me. Two Russian missile boats and an intelligence ship were fatally harmed in this experiment. More spectacularly all 8 F-16s returned to base without running out of fuel! (I wasn't sure about that, they flew the whole mission at 80 feet off the water.) Just waiting on my P-8's to finish rearming (I kind of forgot earlier and they still had torpedos) and I'm going to have a first crack at that Battlecruiser.

(in reply to Ancalagon451)
Post #: 4
RE: Arctic Tsunami 4.2 NATO - 11/1/2018 5:56:42 AM   
Cpt Black

 

Posts: 17
Joined: 10/17/2018
Status: offline
At this point, stand-by. I keep getting a crazy error message. Something like "You may not post links or telephone numbers for seven days after your tenth post." Who comes up with this stuff?

Anyway, I'm assuming the site is interpreting all the numbers in the post as a phone number somehow?

Anyhow the rest of the AAR is written, but no way I can edit out enough numbers to make the site happy.

I'll post it when I can.

(in reply to Cpt Black)
Post #: 5
RE: Arctic Tsunami 4.2 NATO - 11/2/2018 3:02:28 AM   
BeirutDude


Posts: 1187
Joined: 4/27/2013
From: Jacksonville, FL, USA
Status: offline
quote:

Some weird doctrine going on here. All side units are set to Radars and ECM on? No, I have three dozen stealth fighters. No only that, they have the best passive sensor suite in the game. So reset that. Set no tanker for you! I'll ration who can use them, but it's pretty obvious it's got be the QE's F-35s. Lots of missions that have to be deleted, two, however, are really bizarre. So while I hate to be the bearer of bad news, here's a doozy.

There are two squadrons of F-35 fighters on the QE. The first is loaded with Paveway IVs. A sensible choice for asploding things on the ground, a bit harder to use against suface ships, but the F-35 loadout is a bit limited, so you use what you have. These aircraft are assigned to an AAW CAP. Now, I know there is some famous footage from WWII where that one bomber dropped a bomb on the other becoming the first and only in history to earn the title "Iron Bomb Fraticide Ace", but in some military circles this is not considered one of the preffered methods of air-to-air warfare.

The second squadron is, of course, more suited to the task, bristling (internally) with AMRAAMS. They are assigned to an anti-surface warfare patrol. If there is a thing more futile than trying to down other aircraft with laser-guided bombs, it just might be trying to sink a battle-cruiser with AMRAAMS. I mean it's never actually been tried before, but...

So, if you want to play the Russian side, nows your chance before it's fixed!


LOL!

Oooops. So to be honest this was my first big scenario, and heck, a year into designing scenarios for this game I'm still learning things about this interface. I have been designing scenarios for games since the 1980s and by far this is the most complicated and intricate interface I have ever seen. It also allows the most detail I have ever seen. So now I'm working on another Norwegian Sea scenario (1989) were I'm trying to learn/use some basic Lua scripting, but after I finish that one I am going to clean this one up with some lessons I've learned since and some other inconsistencies that have been pointed out to me. Thanks.

Other than that Mrs. Lincoln are you enjoying the show?

< Message edited by BeirutDude -- 11/2/2018 3:28:08 AM >


_____________________________

"Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference. The Marines don't have that problem."
PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN, 1985

I was Navy, but Assigned TAD to the 24th MAU Hq in Beirut. By far the finest period of my service!

(in reply to Cpt Black)
Post #: 6
RE: Arctic Tsunami 4.2 NATO - 11/28/2018 1:36:21 PM   
BeirutDude


Posts: 1187
Joined: 4/27/2013
From: Jacksonville, FL, USA
Status: offline
quote:

Some weird doctrine going on here. All side units are set to Radars and ECM on? No, I have three dozen stealth fighters. No only that, they have the best passive sensor suite in the game. So reset that.


Hopefully fixed.

_____________________________

"Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference. The Marines don't have that problem."
PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN, 1985

I was Navy, but Assigned TAD to the 24th MAU Hq in Beirut. By far the finest period of my service!

(in reply to Cpt Black)
Post #: 7
RE: Arctic Tsunami 4.2 NATO - 11/28/2018 1:38:48 PM   
BeirutDude


Posts: 1187
Joined: 4/27/2013
From: Jacksonville, FL, USA
Status: offline
quote:

There are two squadrons of F-35 fighters on the QE. The first is loaded with Paveway IVs. A sensible choice for asploding things on the ground, a bit harder to use against suface ships, but the F-35 loadout is a bit limited, so you use what you have. These aircraft are assigned to an AAW CAP. Now, I know there is some famous footage from WWII where that one bomber dropped a bomb on the other becoming the first and only in history to earn the title "Iron Bomb Fraticide Ace", but in some military circles this is not considered one of the preffered methods of air-to-air warfare.

The second squadron is, of course, more suited to the task, bristling (internally) with AMRAAMS. They are assigned to an anti-surface warfare patrol. If there is a thing more futile than trying to down other aircraft with laser-guided bombs, it just might be trying to sink a battle-cruiser with AMRAAMS. I mean it's never actually been tried before, but...

So, if you want to play the Russian side, nows your chance before it's fixed!


OMG, now that was a major screw up on my part and thanks for catching! Fixed. Sorry Russians the window is closed!

BTW spit my coffee through my nose reading this myself!!!!!!

_____________________________

"Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference. The Marines don't have that problem."
PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN, 1985

I was Navy, but Assigned TAD to the 24th MAU Hq in Beirut. By far the finest period of my service!

(in reply to Cpt Black)
Post #: 8
RE: Arctic Tsunami 4.2 NATO - 11/28/2018 1:42:02 PM   
BeirutDude


Posts: 1187
Joined: 4/27/2013
From: Jacksonville, FL, USA
Status: offline
quote:

I boggled for a few seconds at the RING OF DEATH surrounding the QE. I'm sure all those points have a purpose when the computer plays the side, but way too hard for me to figure out. Looks like a lot of work went into it though. Built my normal cone-shaped ASW box in front of the QE then fixed spots for CAPS and AEW. Rinse/repeat with the SAG and solo DDG. I remembered the point about the subs randomizing so I let that happen.


Actually not a lot of work to set up. I became enamored of defining circular areas during the point I was designing this scenario. I'm going to leave it because it is easy enough for a player to change themselves and yes it works well for the computer to try to bomb incoming aircraft!

_____________________________

"Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference. The Marines don't have that problem."
PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN, 1985

I was Navy, but Assigned TAD to the 24th MAU Hq in Beirut. By far the finest period of my service!

(in reply to Bert Blitzkrieg)
Post #: 9
RE: Arctic Tsunami 4.2 NATO - 11/28/2018 1:44:42 PM   
BeirutDude


Posts: 1187
Joined: 4/27/2013
From: Jacksonville, FL, USA
Status: offline
quote:

I detached the Artic support ship and sent it to Iceland and poured on the speed in the SAG.


I will detach her. I also had trouble with support ships in another scenario where they were moving an entire CVBG to refuel an LPH!!!!!

_____________________________

"Some people spend an entire lifetime wondering if they made a difference. The Marines don't have that problem."
PRESIDENT RONALD REAGAN, 1985

I was Navy, but Assigned TAD to the 24th MAU Hq in Beirut. By far the finest period of my service!

(in reply to Cpt Black)
Post #: 10
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