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Choking Halifax 1986

 
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Choking Halifax 1986 - 1/3/2020 9:09:16 PM   
fitzpatv

 

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Joined: 3/20/2019
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In this scenario, you have command of a Soviet Kilo-class sub on a special operation on the eve of WW3. You are charged with landing a Spetsnaz team near Halifax, Nova Scotia. This will then move inland and sabotage a logistics hangar at Shearwater Airport. The submarine then has a second mission to lay mines in the harbour approach channel at Halifax, after which it must make its escape.

This was my first game of CMO (as opposed to CMANO) and I was favourably impressed with the improved graphics and user interface. It was especially useful to be able to alter speed and depth without going to a separate window.

The scenario went less well. I went to periscope depth at the start to have a look around and detected a Canadian helicopter-carrying destroyer (the St Laurent) worryingly close. There was a minesweeper with no ASW capability in the harbour channel and some merchant shipping on the way out. A 'submarine' contact predictably proved to be biologic.

Altered course away from the St Laurent and approached the Spetsnaz insertion point indirectly. This worked and the commandos duly 'teleported' ashore.

I wasn't sure how much it mattered, but took advantage of the new detailed ground terrain definition to plot a course through woods and away from built-up areas. The Spetsnaz reached the airport and carried-out their mission as ordered, attacking manually with demolition charges. On the way out, they nearly bumped into an 'unknown ground unit', but I spotted it in time, altered course away from it and got clear as it moved to investigate what had happened at the airport.

The Spetsnaz continued to supply useful information about the locations of Canadian ships, helping the Kilo to proceed just beneath the layer at cruise speed (not realistic, as they'd have had no comms link to the submerged sub in reality).

Forewarned, the Kilo steered a course to avoid the St Laurent and manoeuvred around the minesweeper to reach the minelaying zone, being careful to stay well clear of a Canadian defensive minefield to the E side of the channel.

It was then that things started to go wrong. It is necessary to assign the sub to a minelaying mission, which I did. The exact parameters of this are best known to the AI, but out of my control, the Kilo began meandering about, taking an eternity to lay its 24 mines (which was as much fun as watching paint dry). Meanwhile, the minesweeper sailed around and through the newly-laid field, apparently immune but unable to clear the mines, either.

With six mines left to deposit, I was suddenly informed that the sub had been destroyed - I can only assume by one of its own mines!! As it was moving according to the AI's mission parameters well away from the enemy minefield and had previously seemed in no danger from its payload, I'm not at all sure what I could have done about this. A pity, as the scenario had been quite absorbing up to that point, but a really unsatisfactory conclusion.
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RE: Choking Halifax 1986 - 1/4/2020 8:30:04 AM   
michaelm75au


Posts: 12780
Joined: 5/5/2001
From: Melbourne, Australia
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The mine activation time is only 2 hours from memory. So the mines are probably going live before the sub finishes laying all of them.
I normally give them a 3-4 hour delay to ensure I have enough time to lay them all and get out of the field before they go active.

_____________________________

Michael

(in reply to fitzpatv)
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RE: Choking Halifax 1986 - 1/4/2020 5:32:18 PM   
Randomizer


Posts: 1331
Joined: 6/28/2008
Status: online
This scenario features other means of destruction for your boat that would provide no warning:

- Acoustic torpedo from your baffles;

- A helo-dropped Mk-11 depth charge; and

- A Mk-10 Limbo mortar salvo from an undetected St. Laurent.

So you may not actually been killed by one of your own mines.

-C

(in reply to michaelm75au)
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RE: Choking Halifax 1986 - 1/14/2020 9:56:54 AM   
fitzpatv

 

Posts: 48
Joined: 3/20/2019
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Pretty sure it was the mines. Didn't know there was an activation time setting and following the advice above would probably have prevented the issue.

I knew where the St Laurent was and was well out of its detection range (those Spetsnaz on shore are really, if unrealistically useful). Conceivably I got spotted by its helicopter, but it was operating out to sea, covering the convoy's route with sonobuoys and dropped none near me. Supposedly, there's another Canadian ASW vessel out there somewhere, but neither the Kilo nor the Spetsnaz spotted it. The minesweeper's sonar is of the point-blank range variety and it never came close enough to see me.

(in reply to Randomizer)
Post #: 4
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