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Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges

 
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Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/14/2019 10:25:00 PM   
Shadrach


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In discussions with Hellen_Slith about the ability for users to see the passwords for the challenges in the PBEM++ system, I started wondering about what the "Password" checkbox in the Challenges page means. There's nothing in the manual about this checkbox.

I've always assumed this was for protecting the challenge so that two players who know each other can agree to a password to accept the challenge to avoid someone else jumping between?

I actually tried to accept a challenge and it asked me for a password. I didn't want to dig out the actual password even though I could have, so I entered a new password - assuming it would then fail to allow me to accept. But it still accepted the challenge and let me start the game. I would have thought this would not be possible, and that I'd need to enter the CORRECT password made by the poster to accept the challenge?

In the end it turned out the challenge was made in an older version and I could not actually open it properly. I got the incompatible version error after saving and trying to open again. Apologies to jmlima, I think it was yours
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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 2:34:56 PM   
jmlima

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Shadrach
... Apologies to jmlima, I think it was yours



I was wondering what the f&^% had happened to that game. PBEM++ should be renamed PBEM--

(in reply to Shadrach)
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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 5:04:23 PM   
tomlowshang

 

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I've use the PBEM++ system on several other games (FOGII, SJ, P&SC, BA2), so the problem is with TOAW4's implementation of the PBEM++ protocol.

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 5:16:03 PM   
76mm


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I've never played TOAW with PBEM++ but can confirm that it works well with all the other games I've used it with (WitE, FOG2, other?).

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 6:07:51 PM   
Shadrach


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Thanks for the replies guys. I guess what I'm asking is, if it wasn't clear enough, the following:

Does the password checkbox mean either:
1. The challenge is protected and needs a password to accept it.
or
2. The creator of the challenge has entered a password and you need to as well when starting it.


(in reply to 76mm)
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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 6:48:23 PM   
Hellen_slith


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I think it is supposed to be like #1, the creator of the challenge entered a password, and you need to know it to accept the challenge :)

But that is not clear to creators of challenges (I don't think) b/c I think some folks are confusing that password w/ the routine of creating a password to just open your move like in regular PBEM ... does that make sense?

I shudder to think how many new players are confusing that routine, thinking that they are creating an "open" challenge and are just pass-wording their MOVES, instead of actually creating passwords that hinder others from accepting what otherwise might be an "open" challenge ...


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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 7:06:31 PM   
Shadrach


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Hellen_slith

I think it is supposed to be like #1, the creator of the challenge entered a password, and you need to know it to accept the challenge :)

But that is not clear to creators of challenges (I don't think) b/c I think some folks are confusing that password w/ the routine of creating a password to just open your move like in regular PBEM ... does that make sense?

I shudder to think how many new players are confusing that routine, thinking that they are creating an "open" challenge and are just pass-wording their MOVES, instead of actually creating passwords that hinder others from accepting what otherwise might be an "open" challenge ...


Yes, that's what I've thought too. But then why would it allow me to accept a "passworded" challenge after giving me a "Enter password" dialog where I could just fill in whatever I wanted, and then let me start the turn?

It doesn't make sense - I thought the whole point of the PBEM++ system was to ensure that no-one but the player of the current turn could actually open it. Hence no need for the "regular" PBEM password, as the user has already authenticated in the system itself.

But why would the system let me enter anything in the password and still let me accept it?

EDIT: Let us test something, in a couple mins I will create a throw-away challenge. Don't examine the file we know about, just enter anything for a password, and see if the system accepts.




< Message edited by Shadrach -- 12/15/2019 7:12:14 PM >

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 7:21:06 PM   
Hellen_slith


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Sure, give me an half hour or so to get to my TOAW computer (on my laptop right now)

FWIW, I also had tried just accepting like you did w/ Jman, but it did not work for me back then.

Ok, heading up to my TOAW den now, will report results in a few minutes.

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 7:36:35 PM   
Hellen_slith


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No challenge found, saw your move in the other, and I disbanded a lot to allow you free movement / get on the beach in that one. I also set all German to interdiction, to see how that might play out w/ these versions.

Will check again in a few for the other challenge re: password stuff?

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 7:40:04 PM   
Shadrach


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Strange, it should be there.



Maybe some delay.


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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 7:42:26 PM   
Hellen_slith


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Will check it again, I'll give it another beer to refresh :) will report in a few more minutes.

PS (edit): I have to climb the stairs to the TOAW rookery, am currently in smoke shack, drinking beer and partaking, so it may be a few minutes :) Let me know how the interdiction strikes (if any) occur in the other ...

PPS: okay, heading back to TOAW rookery. Will reboot if I still don't see the challenge, will report in a few more minutes....

< Message edited by Hellen_slith -- 12/15/2019 7:56:54 PM >

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 8:07:06 PM   
Hellen_slith


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Found challenge, tried various "throwaway" p words, tried blank, could not open.

Well done!

PS: in our other, the Normandy/Rommel, I disbanded lots of coastal artillery / other units, but set all German air to "interdiction" to see how that might play for you, as a test.

As for the other: no dice for me, could not crack just messing around w/ it, I tried various, but it would have had to look at json to start that game for me, but did not.

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 8:15:07 PM   
Shadrach


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Wow, OK thanks for the clarification.

Could you try the same please?
I could try with the already existing challenge open but I don't really want to step on someone's toes any more...

I assume you are still on .21 right? As we were testing different versions? Surprised you could open our scen if different version.



(in reply to Hellen_slith)
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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 8:19:51 PM   
Hellen_slith


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Shadrach

Wow, OK thanks for the clarification.

Could you try the same please?
I could try with the already existing challenge open but I don't really want to step on someone's toes any more...

I assume you are still on .21 right? As we were testing different versions? Surprised you could open our scen if different version.




Yes, I am still on .21 .... Win7 machine ... thus my interest in testing Normandy/Rommel w/ you.

Not sure what you mean by trying again the same ... but will look at it in a few. Shall I go ahead and open that challenge you posted, using J to get the password?

But yes, I am curious about effects b/w differing versions .... how they play against each other. I suspect, that the person w/ the older version (that is, me) will suffer the interdiction effects, but the person w/ the newer version (that is, you) will have the benefit of the newer rules.

Not sure. If that is the case, then the person w/ the older version may have an advantage, if both versions can play against each other. But then, thinking about it, the person w/ older version will not be able to incur those strikes....thus putting them at a DISadvantage, if they expect interdiction help. What a logic problem! Thinking more about it, I think the older version might have a disadvantage in such a case. Not sure. Still testing!!

Ok, will go to rookery again, see what we can see. Report in a few.

< Message edited by Hellen_slith -- 12/15/2019 8:26:01 PM >

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 8:22:44 PM   
Shadrach


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Just create new challenge. Same scene, and I will try first to enter "any" password. Then if that doesn't work I will fish yours out of the file and start it.
And you can show me how seaborne invasions are done

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 8:27:47 PM   
Hellen_slith


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Got it, will start another challenge w/ a new p word. Will make easy, is Solomon's last name again (all lower case).

As far as seaborne invasions in Rommel...Brits must first pound German coastal artillery and take them out ... also using SAS airborne (the coastal arty for Germans are really weak, they fall easily) ... and then make the seaborne invasion w/ US engineers leading the way to get on the beach.

I will start the game as Allies, that way I can show you how the Allies can make that invasion happen. In meantime, please move Allies on your side in the other, to test German interdiction?

Few minutes before I can post the other ... have to climb stairs, and these medicinal bursitis cigarettes are starting to take a toll on me LoL :)

< Message edited by Hellen_slith -- 12/15/2019 8:42:56 PM >

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 8:54:14 PM   
Hellen_slith


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Two new challenges posted, both Normandy/Rommel ... Solomon ______ is p word for both.

In other, I did not move a lot, but did see Allied interdict at end of move.
How is German interdict going on your end?

I only moved a bit, just throwing that game away to test interdict and .21 vis-a-vis .40 versions

(in reply to Hellen_slith)
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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 8:55:53 PM   
Shadrach


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Right OK. Things seem to work as expected, I'm denied with the wrong password. Not sure what happened when I accidentally accepted a challenge and entered a bogus password and was still let in. Now it gives "Bad Password" which is correct.

I was able to start your scene as well. First I chose the one that said "German Army" as I wanted to try the German side but I was dropped into Allied turn 1.
Then I opened the one with "Allied Army" and it was sent to you first. So I guess the Side column means what side the challenge creator has chosen, not what side I (the challenger) will be playing. Always confusing...

Oh and to be honest, I don't think I'm the right person to check interdiction. I usually overlook these things when I play (yes total newbie still...)


< Message edited by Shadrach -- 12/15/2019 8:57:14 PM >

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 9:12:53 PM   
Hellen_slith


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Shadrach

... the Side column means what side the challenge creator has chosen, not what side I (the challenger) will be playing. Always confusing...


Yes, that is correct, it shows which side the CREATOR has chosen to play. It is indeed confusing.

Alas, I have no power to be able to convince TPTB how confusing all this is this for PBEM "Plus Plus" for TOAW, nor any way to suggest what (to me) would be easy fixes ... and yet, we struggle on.

YMMV!!

< Message edited by Hellen_slith -- 12/15/2019 9:20:16 PM >

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 9:21:10 PM   
Shadrach


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Yeah... The manual states:

Challenges screen
There are four headings:
Issued – date the challenge was issued.
Game Name – scenario to be played.
Challenger – who issued the challenge.
Side – the side that will be played by the
Challenger.

Accept screen
There are four headings:
Issued – date the challenge was issued.
Game Name – scenario to be played.
Challenger – who issued the challenge.
Side – the side that will be played by the acceptor.

So that's just very confusing. And also WRONG - as that's not what happens as far as I can tell.

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 9:33:37 PM   
Hellen_slith


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Shadrach

I don't think I'm the right person to check interdiction. I usually overlook these things when I play (yes total newbie still...)



Not at all, only asking if you are getting interdiction strikes all over the place, mid-turn.

I have set all Germans (and all Allies) to total interdict in our games.

w/ the new patch, the interdiction should ONLY take place at end-of-turn, not DURING turn.

And, with me still running .21 v. your .4, was just curious about how that might play out for us in out test games.





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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 9:46:35 PM   
Shadrach


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Ah yes I understand. I DO get interdiction during movement of units (if that's what you mean).
Maybe because the scene was created on your version it still uses the old code?

I'm just surprised playing even works with us on different versions

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/15/2019 10:19:02 PM   
Hellen_slith


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Shadrach

Ah yes I understand. I DO get interdiction during movement of units (if that's what you mean).
Maybe because the scene was created on your version it still uses the old code?

I'm just surprised playing even works with us on different versions


Understood, I too am still curious about the interactions b/w .21 and .40

We are playing two different versions ... but which one "rules" during our moves?

I will now set ALL germans to interdiction now (the last turn, only HALF of German Air was set to interdict ... the rest were in "rest" status ....)

Putting now ALL interdict onto you, and will continue to "disband" so as to allow your units free reign w/ movement ...

just to see what my interdicts will do.

Thanks for testing this w/ me.

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/17/2019 1:51:32 PM   
Shadrach


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Well, I was definitely getting a lot of interdicts as the Germans DURING the turn. As well as some at end of turn.
I also got a lot as Allies but the scope of movement is limited.

It's too bad we cannot actually see the results of these interdicts without turning on a debug log. I would assume interdict losses are usually small, couple of squads and tanks maybe, but no way of knowing.

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/17/2019 4:48:46 PM   
Lobster


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Perhaps look at the losses/replacements at the beginning of the turn and then after each interdict? Of course movement alone causes some wear and tear on equipment which results in equipment going into the replacement pile. And in a scenario that has lots of different equipments it would be a pain. Getting a report on losses to interdiction has been asked for since I can't remember when, it's a very old issue. Maybe some day.

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/17/2019 4:50:32 PM   
Lobster


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Hellen_slith


quote:

ORIGINAL: Shadrach

Ah yes I understand. I DO get interdiction during movement of units (if that's what you mean).
Maybe because the scene was created on your version it still uses the old code?

I'm just surprised playing even works with us on different versions


We are playing two different versions ... but which one "rules" during our moves?



It can be assumed the version installed on each persons machine would decide which rules individually.

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/20/2019 7:14:43 PM   
Hellen_slith


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Lobster

Getting a report on losses to interdiction has been asked for since I can't remember when, it's a very old issue. Maybe some day.


Yes, I think that the limitations (no reports) on air to land interdiction during movement is a GLARING drawback as far as playing the game ... this is something that I think needs to be addressed.

Or perhaps I don't have the game set up properly to see that type of report, not sure.

For my last test, in Normandy/Rommel, I was struck with over 75 interdiction strikes during movement ... and could not figure out a way to see where those interdiction originated, nor what the affect was, only that sometimes my units would go into "retreating" mode, other times they would disembark rail half way to destination, or just suffer in other ways I have not yet discovered.

In a scene like Normandy/Rommel, it is VERY frustrating to have to "click through" 75 interdict strikes, just to get back to playing the game. VERY VERY frustrating. Such a great scene to be hamstrung by that mechanic, w/o better reports / better game mechanics.

And yet ... we struggle on. It is what it is, and there are ways to mitigate, but I wish that that mechanic were better implemented. YMMV!

< Message edited by Hellen_slith -- 12/20/2019 7:18:16 PM >

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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/20/2019 7:34:12 PM   
Shadrach


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Without knowing much about the history of the game or why interdiction worked the way it did; maybe this frustration with constantly being harassed is why they decided to move them to the end of turn?

Then again, how will they realistically work at end of turn? A big point of interdiction strikes is to target enemy troop transports and supplies. Having your rail-transported division stranded after a strike is frustrating but that's how it's supposed to be, right? They rarely cause any big casualties but if you can disrupt enemy movement that's a huge bonus. In the Normandy scenario that's perfectly illustrated by delaying the movement of SS Pansy divisions from the south.

Now that interdicts are happening at the end of turn, are they just random strikes all over the place? That would kind of defeat the whole purpose if you ask me.

Obviously we need the strikes to be logged in the battle log as well, to be able to see the effects.


(in reply to Hellen_slith)
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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/20/2019 7:55:53 PM   
Hellen_slith


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Shadrach

Without knowing much about the history of the game or why interdiction worked the way it did; maybe this frustration with constantly being harassed is why they decided to move them to the end of turn?

Then again, how will they realistically work at end of turn? A big point of interdiction strikes is to target enemy troop transports and supplies. Having your rail-transported division stranded after a strike is frustrating but that's how it's supposed to be, right? They rarely cause any big casualties but if you can disrupt enemy movement that's a huge bonus. In the Normandy scenario that's perfectly illustrated by delaying the movement of SS Pansy divisions from the south.

Now that interdicts are happening at the end of turn, are they just random strikes all over the place? That would kind of defeat the whole purpose if you ask me.

Obviously we need the strikes to be logged in the battle log as well, to be able to see the effects.




But that isn't happening (end of turn) as far as I can tell.

During movement ... ok. But at start of every combat round as well ... annoying as hell.

I agree, interdict is part of the game, and perhaps much of the "problem" w/ it (as I see it) is muchly part of scenario design. But as it stands, it seems to be a mechanic that can be abused.

For me, I really don't care ... I can live with it as is, BUT, for many I think it is a mechanic that is just a turn off. Who wants to have to click through LITERALLY multiple dozens of interdicts, w/o any sort of report? For me, I have found ways to mitigate, and maybe that is part of learning the game, but for others .... total turn-off.

Such a great game, there must be a better way. I hope that another mechanic might be found in TOAW V, whereby the IDEA of interdict is kept, but the "click through it all" is better handled.

YMMV!

(in reply to Shadrach)
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RE: Clarification re: PBEM++ passworded challenges - 12/20/2019 9:32:48 PM   
Shadrach


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Yeah, the game sure has a fondness for bombarding the player with (mostly) useless dialog boxes. It's just bad UI design. One that gets to me is when I accidentally click an unavailable unit in the planner, and get "X cannot attack!" - why do we need to click away a dialog telling us this when it should be plain to everyone from the large X over the unit anyway? And don't get me started on the multitide of information boxes the game insists on showing on start of every turn, surely they could be reduced to one or two? And do we really need to click "begin" on every start when the game shows us side, turn and date on the top right anyway?

Over time I've learned to keep my left hand dangling over the "1" and "ESC" keys to be able to get these out of the way, instead of risking RSI from constant clicking away dialogs.

The issue of having to inform the player that interdiction happened can easily be solved with:

- Showing a short animation when interdiction happens (already happens I believe)
- Having some on-screen text informing of the attack, but disappears after say 5 seconds. The "Command Ops" game does this elegantly with a message log.
- Logging the combat in the Battle Report for the player to examine.

This way the player would not have to be interrupted with a zillion dialog boxes during every move.


< Message edited by Shadrach -- 12/20/2019 9:33:24 PM >

(in reply to Hellen_slith)
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