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New Scenario for testing "Fire Arrow" v.3 now up

 
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New Scenario for testing "Fire Arrow" v.3 now up - 5/6/2020 11:58:18 PM   
vettim89


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Ok, first off this scenario is my baby. I started working on it in CMANO but CMO solved a lot of problems that I was having because now we have cargo operations (woohoo!) Second, I cannot thank Knighthawk75 for his help in solving some issues with the Lua scripting. Thanks so much.

Fire Arrow is a book by Franklin Allen Lieb published in 1988. In it a Palestinian terrorist cell plants a bomb on a USN charter flight over the Mediterranean Sea. The plane is force to fly to Libya where the terrorist remotely disarm the bomb on condition that it land at Okba Ben Nafi Air Base (formerly Wheelus Air Base). The terrorists first demand that there leader be freed form an Italian prison, and the Italians comply and fly him to Libya. Then they demand that members of teh group being held in Kuwait also be released. The Kuwaitis do not comply. The day before the scenario begins the terrorists start executing their hostages. The President then orders a rescue effort to free the hostages and get them out of Libya.

The plan includes dropping a SEAL team into the base via HALO - High Altitude Low Open - drop from a high flying B-52. The SEAL team then neutralizes the terrorists securing the hostages in the process. This is where the book gets a bit funky because the rest of the rescue mission involves a para-drop by a company from the 82nd Airborne, insertion of two platoons of tanks via LAPES (Low Altitude Parachute Extraction System), and finally a heliborne assault by a company of US Marines. The USN and USAF meanwhile are doing their best to neutralize Libyan defense.

Now there is a lot of stuff in the book that IMHO is a bit far fetched including the tanks, almost no close air support for the troops on the ground, violation of French air space without the French government's permission, etc. I toyed with the idea of writing the scenario a little more sanely as far as international relations and such go. I opted to make the scenario as close to the book but did exclude some things impossible to model like a team of Soviet advisors in tanks and APCs showing up at the air base just as the hostages were about to be evacuated. If you like this scenario but would like to see a more realistic IMO version, I will redo it with the appropriate changes if there is enough interest.

A couple of substitutions were necessary: the Paratroops and Marines have Javelin ATGMs because Dragon ATGMs are not in DB3000 and I used AMX-10 tanks for the armor as the M551 Sheridan is also not in DB3000.

Looking forward to your comments

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< Message edited by vettim89 -- 5/17/2020 8:00:32 PM >


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"We have met the enemy and they are ours" - Commodore O.H. Perry
Post #: 1
RE: New Scenario for testing "Fire Arrow" - 5/8/2020 9:08:43 PM   
vettim89


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From: Toledo, Ohio
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Anybody try this yet? Was hoping for some feedback

_____________________________

"We have met the enemy and they are ours" - Commodore O.H. Perry

(in reply to vettim89)
Post #: 2
RE: New Scenario for testing "Fire Arrow" - 5/8/2020 11:31:49 PM   
KnightHawk75

 

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I grabbed it a day ago, it's on the list to try for this weekend.

(in reply to vettim89)
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RE: New Scenario for testing "Fire Arrow" - 5/10/2020 8:10:41 PM   
RSMC

 

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Enjoyed the book too.

Ran through it today. Timing on target is a huge challenge.

Suggestions / Questions:
1.) Either group the assets at Seymour Johnson or convert to a single unit airfield - they were ungrouped at the start and the tankers couldn't take off.
2.) Add information in the briefing on the number of hostages to get out, you need that to plan the number of helos needed for extraction.
3.) For some reason the seals didn't want to be picked up by the marine helos.
4.) The Libyan forces that I assume should be a post hostage evacuation surprise can be found and killed before the evacuation.
5.) With 2 carriers worth of support, you don't really need the armor. I used A7s and F18s for SEAD and CAS and they handled the few aircraft that took off.
6.) Advice in the briefing on moving the SAG and the ARGs closer would be good. At first the CH46s didn't have the range and I think the book had 16 inch gunfire support
7.) I think you need to either move the LAPES LZ further out to sea or make the required altitude a little greater than 1000 feet. Best I could do over land was get them down to 1020 feet, they go as low as 300 feet over water.

I rescued hostages with no losses.

Refueling for the C141s near the Azores and north of Algeria, recovery at Signonella
Brought 3 flights of F111s with refueling off NW Spain and Gibraltar but didn't use them
Dropped the SEALS, secured the hostages, and blew up the S60
Followed that with a massive SEAD effort to suppress the SAMS
At that point took out ground forces near the airbase
Then landed the Armor, Paras, and Marines
Loaded the hostages, took more than I thought since I underestimated the helo needs
Clicked on the special actions - got a message about forces SE of the airbase - got a target marker, but I think I had previously destroyed the troops
Evacuated everyone but the SEALS that wouldn't load
Didn't see any action from any of the other airbases

Got Average 500 points - didn't see how to get any more

(in reply to KnightHawk75)
Post #: 4
RE: New Scenario for testing "Fire Arrow" - 5/11/2020 2:28:51 PM   
vettim89


Posts: 3575
Joined: 7/14/2007
From: Toledo, Ohio
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quote:

ORIGINAL: RSMC

Enjoyed the book too.

Ran through it today. Timing on target is a huge challenge.

Suggestions / Questions:
1.) Either group the assets at Seymour Johnson or convert to a single unit airfield - they were ungrouped at the start and the tankers couldn't take off.
2.) Add information in the briefing on the number of hostages to get out, you need that to plan the number of helos needed for extraction.
3.) For some reason the seals didn't want to be picked up by the marine helos.
4.) The Libyan forces that I assume should be a post hostage evacuation surprise can be found and killed before the evacuation.
5.) With 2 carriers worth of support, you don't really need the armor. I used A7s and F18s for SEAD and CAS and they handled the few aircraft that took off.
6.) Advice in the briefing on moving the SAG and the ARGs closer would be good. At first the CH46s didn't have the range and I think the book had 16 inch gunfire support
7.) I think you need to either move the LAPES LZ further out to sea or make the required altitude a little greater than 1000 feet. Best I could do over land was get them down to 1020 feet, they go as low as 300 feet over water.

I rescued hostages with no losses.

Refueling for the C141s near the Azores and north of Algeria, recovery at Signonella
Brought 3 flights of F111s with refueling off NW Spain and Gibraltar but didn't use them
Dropped the SEALS, secured the hostages, and blew up the S60
Followed that with a massive SEAD effort to suppress the SAMS
At that point took out ground forces near the airbase
Then landed the Armor, Paras, and Marines
Loaded the hostages, took more than I thought since I underestimated the helo needs
Clicked on the special actions - got a message about forces SE of the airbase - got a target marker, but I think I had previously destroyed the troops
Evacuated everyone but the SEALS that wouldn't load
Didn't see any action from any of the other airbases

Got Average 500 points - didn't see how to get any more


1. I will check the Seymour Johnson Issue. I suspect I was messing with some units and inadvertently deleted the group
2. I was able to perform the LAPES in my test. The A/C need to be over the land so the tanks land on the ground. I will up the altitude limit on the event to deal with this
3. Odd on the points issue - you should get 500 points for rescuing the hostages and 500 more for evacuating them. You said you hit the "Special Action" for hostage evac, right? Will check this one
4. Yes the Intel update places a target marker where the SR-71 saw them but that info was hours old by the time you receive it. I think I will move the timing of the even up as in the book the intel arrives just as the units are going ashore which adds to the surprise factor. In CMO there is no way I can tell exactly when the player will cross over into Libyan air space. I will move it up an hour or two just to provide some level of doubt in the strike planning. Obviously you got intel update AFTER you had found and destroyed the Libyan units
5. Ah, yes the SEAL Team wouldn't load. Of course because they were not a "deployed unit". Not a problem. I will fix this.
6. The Libyan response is variable. One of the options is to do nothing. In the book the Ghadaffi character is rather miffed at Abu Salaam for exposing Libya to attack. My thinking is that one possible option would be to just let the US do its thing rather than losing the entire Libyan Air Force in a vain attempt to "keep face". So it seems your play through had that option activated.
7. In theory you should have plenty of time to move the ARGs closer to the shore in the time the airborne needs to cross the Atlantic. I will nudge them a little closer. The New Jersey Group is there for gunfire support also. I will nudge that group a little closer also.
8. Will change the briefing to include the line item "61 hostages" so the player will know he needs to account for that many to be picked up.

Thanks for the feedback. This scenario was designed to be complex but not hard. A lot of planning to get the time on target correct but the forces against you are not that hard to destroy.


_____________________________

"We have met the enemy and they are ours" - Commodore O.H. Perry

(in reply to RSMC)
Post #: 5
RE: New Scenario for testing "Fire Arrow" - 5/12/2020 2:44:09 AM   
vettim89


Posts: 3575
Joined: 7/14/2007
From: Toledo, Ohio
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Version 2 has been uploaded replacing the original. Please delete the original copy of the scenario. The initial post has the new file.

I could not recreate the problem with Seymour-Johnson AB in my copy of the game. It is grouped and capable of launching aircraft.

1. Fixed: issue with the SEAL teams not being loadable onto helicopters
2. Fixed: briefing now includes notes about the number of hostages expected to be picked up (you need to allocate two CH-53)
3. Fixed: Nudged the ARG and SAG closer to the Libyan coast. Also included note in briefing about the need to approach the coast
4. Fixed: points not awarded for both saving the hostages and evacuating them
5. Fixed: LAPES aircraft now need to be below 2000 feet to activate the event

Did not adjust the Libyan response script for now. May reconsider that before the final product is out for general consumption

_____________________________

"We have met the enemy and they are ours" - Commodore O.H. Perry

(in reply to vettim89)
Post #: 6
RE: New Scenario for testing "Fire Arrow" - 5/12/2020 5:54:53 AM   
KnightHawk75

 

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This based on version one... since I only just finished (took me a couple days, I don't generally play faster than 5x lol)

Civilian side was able to be selected as playable, I think you probably don't want that.
Side ROE - US - Land weapons checkbox was not enabled for the user to change.
Echo the prior persons to consider saying how many hostages there are 2 groups of 36 in the brief,helps for chopper selection without having to drill down yourself as I also made a note of it. May want to note the hostages need cargo loadouts, not marinex## loadouts that do work for the SEAL teams. Or at least this how it played out for me, the hostages couldn't rescued without cargo loadouts and the seals would take either.

Civilian side - I could be missing something but if it doesn't need awareness, set it to blind.
Execution step 4 could be more clear if specific units are required or not.
Execution step 6 could be more clear if specific units are required or not.

Units:
- I didn't have a problem launching the tankers that another user mentioned.
- I didn't have a problem getting the c-141's under 1000 feet either, they went down to 300ft for me.

-Aircraft in unavailable maintenance not there to purposely fill-up the base-space it seems can be removed (uk- raf lakenheath).saves ~100 extra units
-Saipan-Harriers, if we can't use maybe consider removing them?
-US bases - definitely use single unit airbases, save unit count. ~225 extra units not need.
-Iceland base - definitely use single unit airbase,save unit count. ~65 extra units not needed.
-UK base - highly consider using single unit airbase, save unit count.~150 extra unit not needed.
-Other US bases - consider using single unit airbase (unless libyans will strike them or your purposely trying to create space challenges), saves on unit count. ~225+ extra units.
[That's 750 units that really don't need to be around]
What are Archer 9 and 10 for? maybe remove them?
Libyan elint aircraft didn't have a mission, Not sure if that was on purpose or gets assigned later?

All the cargo on the ships is it there on purpose?
If not remove whats not needed save on unit count, I made use of it though in ways probably not meant to be.
Lastly consider un-grouping all the radars, all the sams, anything that isn't an airfield on Libyan side or doesn't need to be grouped.
That or make the player have to discover them (remove auto-detectable). Drove me up a wall constantly having to v,un-v,while targeting with a group of aircraft till I popped over to that side and undid it most of it.

Scripts:
There is a trigger and related ghosted rp's to an in-area french airspace violation that is not tied to an event, consider removing it if not used and just remains from trying out different approaches, been there got the tee shirt.

Halo -Seals A\B dropped triggered successfully.

During hostage rescue I got a lua error when my super stallions were a mile or so out.
Syntax error near unit. Libyia Response Activation.
The problem was "If unit.dbid='204' then".. should be unit.dbid==204, equals is an assignment, equalequal is a compare.
Also the 'If' should not be capital, and an extra 'then' after 'else', which isn't needed.
Fixed that and it fire again fine. Attached is the changes I made for that one.

The Check For units in area when done picking up the hostage failed with the error attempt to call nil value.
This is because while you attempted to load the functions at start up they were the local version so they didn't exist. Attached is also the version you can cut and paste that is global (or just remove 'local' before each of the function declarations names in 'load functions'.
In both cases they 'appeared' to work, but in the events log I noticed the errors.

Hostage rescue completed I triggered successfully after all hostages and seals were picked up and 12 miles out to sea, after I fixed the above.
Didn't need the Larps drop but went through he motions to trigger it anyway successfully, as well as blowing them up.
Removing the armor went without issue.
However - The script for USA:Check for Evac complete, upon scenario end should maybe?? disable itself with:
ScenEdit_SetEvent('USA:Check for Evac complete',{IsActive=false}) That way those that may want to continue don't get messaged over and over.

My strat was to more or less use what was there and ignore the plan beyond what I needed to test triggers etc.
I snuck in some LCACS to deliver an separate force hours before the rescue, elements of which I positioned all around the main airbase and surrounding areas to scout and be prepared to take things out including radars as soon as the hostages were feet wet.
I didn't open fire or even launch anything other than helos till the pickups were complete and my carrier strike forces were launching.
On the f-111 front I ignored them because I figured I didn't need them to pull off most of what was desired.
Stole the tankers for them early and moved them to Spain, in the process I had them actually hook up with the the tankers from the us so that after a super micro'd tanking over the Atlantic, I re-based them to Spain as well and used their remaining fuel to top of the kc-10's leaving them with enough to land but not much else.
This allowed kc-10's to then fully fill up the Archers (who for bingo mgmt were now re-based to Sicily) and go on their merry way to larps points and then to Sicily without me having to even watch the fuel anymore.

After they were out of the AO, I used the previously landed units from hours before to whack radars, sams, armor, along with finally launching a few carrier aircraft and using the NJ group to give the enemy a seriously bad day - though zero of that was needed because Libyans never fought back.

I saw no Libyan aircraft during the entire scenario, none of the mission for them activated except the 'near ASuW one' and I think I had already blown up all the aircraft for it on the ground. The others were still disabled when the scenario ended.

The only difficulty and shots actually needing to be fired were at the terrorists, and the refueling\management challenge. I assume it was a cake walk because none of the caps and other missions ever got activated, looking around a little looks like they are timed not to active till the mission is over 2-21 15:xx for the ground, and some of the others don't look like they active unless ship or weapons are detected and I avoided that for the most part till it was too late for them maybe? idk what happened with that.

Attachment (1)

< Message edited by KnightHawk75 -- 5/12/2020 6:06:47 AM >

(in reply to vettim89)
Post #: 7
RE: New Scenario for testing "Fire Arrow" - 5/12/2020 3:18:20 PM   
vettim89


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From: Toledo, Ohio
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Knighthawk75,

First of all thank you for all the suggestions. I will change all the airbases to Single Unit Air Fields. I just loaded everything form the stock import/export database. I did not consider that all those extra units only serve to add to the CPU's work load. That is an easy fix.

AS for all the extra units, they were put there for the free form version I was considering as an alternative to recreating the actions of the book. So in the book, the author failed to consider that by 1989 LHAs would carry a detachment of AV-8s. Now that a couple of people have given me feed back, it seems that players are more likely to come up with their own less complicated solutions to the problem than the author. So perhaps activating the Harriers to let the player play with them is the way to go because I as the scenario author really can't dictate to the player exactly how they choose to solve the problems the scenario presents to them. In short, I think I should present the book's solutions as available to the player but understand that all bets are off once the "start" button is pressed by the player.

Archer 9 and 10 are for the paratroop company that was inserted in the book.

I was able to pick up the hostages with "Marine 38" load outs for the CH-53 in my test. That is odd that you were unable to do it. I will verify and if your assessment is correct make a note in the briefing

Yes, you are right the unit.dbid line was included so the HALO B-52 didn't trigger a Libyan response.

Also, it seems that I have issue with my response codes for the Libyans. I programmed a delay because if the SEAL team triggered the activation the Libyans could potentially roll over them and the hostages before support could be brought to bear. However, it seems that players are actually able to identify and destroy the Libyan forces before they can even pose a threat. Looks like its back to the drawing board on this one.

BTW, you cheated, Knighthawk. The briefing specifically said you are not to violate Libyan territory until the hostages were secure. Looks like I will need to add some code in for cheaters like you - just kidding. You went full Kobiashi Maru on me and changed the parameters of the test. Just proof that players will always be more resourceful than scenario designers

_____________________________

"We have met the enemy and they are ours" - Commodore O.H. Perry

(in reply to KnightHawk75)
Post #: 8
RE: New Scenario for testing "Fire Arrow" - 5/12/2020 4:14:56 PM   
KnightHawk75

 

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Oh so that's what Archer9 and 10 were for, ok was unclear to me, maybe cause I don't know the book as a reference.
On the extra overhead... I mean if you need it (and lots of times people do) you need it, but if you don't the savings of a several hundred units can add up.

Yeah the delay was a good idea, but idk something went wrong there where even after I fixed the script error things never activated certain missions, maybe cause I noticed and fixed script that was throwing an too late? idk.

quote:

The briefing specifically said you are not to violate Libyan territory until the hostages were secure.



I believe it said 'airspace' ... So I drove a truck though the technicality. But yeah I cheated, but like I said I never actually needed to use them anyway, and even when I did it was after hostages were gone, though I could have just kept them 12nm out and done nearly the same thing. ;) Ultimately it didn't really work cause I while the lcacs\etc would unload all the troops with mortors,tows,javlins,etc.. When I went to leave none of them would pick-up the units they dropped off at all, though the scenario was done at that point so it didn't much matter. Not the first time I've seen that with boat drop offs though, sometimes it works sometimes it doesn't I've not invested the time yet to figure out why.

Anyway, it's a interesting scenario, keep at it.


< Message edited by KnightHawk75 -- 5/12/2020 4:35:37 PM >

(in reply to vettim89)
Post #: 9
RE: New Scenario for testing "Fire Arrow" - 5/17/2020 8:12:02 PM   
vettim89


Posts: 3575
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From: Toledo, Ohio
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Version 3 now up loaded

Fixed: briefing now includes note that the hostages can only be picked up with a "cargo" load out (game considers "personnel" cargo not people (i.e., not Marines)
Fixed: civilian side now blind
Fixed: SEAL Teams are now loadable
Fixed: errors in event editing == not = (duh)
Fixed: making functions global vice local and thus available (basically just imported Knighthawk's new code)
Fixed: mission parameters for Libyan ground forces making them chase ghosts. Established prosecution zone around Okba Ben Nafi that will limit their activity to that area only
Updated: All US side air bases save one are now Single Unit Airfields
Updated: Removed all non-available aircraft from both sides
Updated: Libyan response triggers and options (now four options of increasingly greater commitment including the "do nothing" option
Updated: moved some Libyan units around
Updated: Libyans now maintain daylight CAP over Tripoli and Okba Ben Nafi regardless of US actions
Updated: made AV-8B on the LHD available to US player with munitions in magazines

Hope this both works as designed and presents a little more challenge to players.


_____________________________

"We have met the enemy and they are ours" - Commodore O.H. Perry

(in reply to KnightHawk75)
Post #: 10
RE: New Scenario for testing "Fire Arrow" - 5/18/2020 9:42:15 AM   
KnightHawk75

 

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Cool, I'll try another go with it this week.

(in reply to vettim89)
Post #: 11
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