Bru's Scenarios

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bru888
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Re: Bru's Scenarios

Post by bru888 » Tue Aug 14, 2018 8:23 pm

Wow, Erik, based on that walkover performance, I feel fully justified in restoring the Axis AA guns back to full strength. I feel confident that this will ratchet up the difficulty and prioritize the use of American fighters to battle them instead of going for the refineries themselves. The only risk of losing this scenario is the loss of bombers and that will go up substantially now.

Noble, but stupid OSS Unit! I tried every darned AI setting I could think of to get it to just "defend the tent like a good chap, will you?" Either the unit would sit passively while the nosy Romanian Military Police proceed to destroy the airstrip, or it would "conquer" the nearby town of Gherghita which in turn would cow the Romanian police unit into its own passivity. Solutions: Change the OSS Unit to human control once its construction task is done and dial up the aggression of the police unit.

Sorry about the multiple Marshalling Yard explosions. I had the bright idea that it would look cool to have wreckage spewing smoke on every turn thereafter (as you know, as soon as any unit enters such a hex, the wreckage is cleared away) so I set it up to re-create the concrete bunkers and destroy them every turn. I did not realize that there would be audible explosions as well, which must have seemed weird and annoying. Removed.

As to "The mission extension should trigger a 'scenario end' condition to allow the player to finish any remaining secondary objectives," I included destroying the rest of the trains along with the fuel depots and oil pumps in the condition for finishing the scenario if that option is chosen.

To aid the airmen on their escape, I have placed small supply caches at a few key intersections along their journey to the woods. (I prefer the airmen as bandits rather than paratroopers for aesthetic reasons and because paratroopers could be used to unrealistically wipe out the Romanian police).

I found the problem with the evacuation trigger. Advanced forensic analysis was necessary! :)

Ploesti Revisited v1.1 is uploaded.

Changes:
- Returned all Axis AA guns to full strength.
- Provided for the human player to take over control of the OSS Unit.
- Removed multiple Marshalling Yard demolition effects.
- Included trains in the condition for finishing the mission option.
- Placed supply caches to aid airmen on their escape.
- Anchored the "Make a Break" and "Here They Come" messages to the proper spot on the map.
- Fixed an issue with the paratrooper evacuation trigger.
- Bru

GabeKnight
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Re: Bru's Scenarios

Post by GabeKnight » Fri Sep 14, 2018 7:30 pm

Ploesti Revisited v1.1, v6.1.9, level3

Again a nice scen. Very story driven, as usual. And those little "side missions" add a nice diversion to the overall gameplay. Very professionally done, I guess you must be doing some creative work IRL, too. :D

Surprisingly quite the difficult mission, to be honest. Unbelievably many AA positions. :mrgreen:

The pure primary objectives are achievable without problems and without great of a plan. But in my first playthrough I failed the paratroopers evac and the "demolish...yard" objective didn't check complete (but I may have used the OSS unit and bombers for support). Later I also failed the prim. objective ("lose bombers") near the end due to miscalculations on my part and too reckless play with the third wave units :oops: (because I never expected a fourth...).
In my defence: It's hard to calculate right with four or five AA's firing - and some of them, like the 88, taking up to 4 HP damage on my bombers in one attack. :evil:

To achieve all prim. and sec. (with "yes" answered to continue fighting), I had to restart. The second playthrough went much smoother. Consolidating forces is key.
(But I suspect a "Major Victory" on level 5 diff. to be veeeeeery hard; if possible at all)

Observations/suggestions:

- the "To aid the airmen on their escape" mission works perfectly, but besides adding a nice touch, it's too easy. I think one partisan unit would be moooore than enough for this task.
- the "OSS/paratrooper" mission plays well, if one listens to orders. It's just too tempting to attack one of the pesky AA units with them :) . I even used the OSS special forces unit to come to the para's aid. And of course my airstrip got destoyed... I think you should add a warning that it might get attacked, like with the crashed airmen. The triggers worked okay.
- I love the Brit Wellington bombers...they're practically invulnerable to ground AA...
- There's some kind of "reveal area" relic near the original OSS/farm house location (see screnshot). Acts like a radar, allowing me to see enemy plane movement. Intended?

Screenshot 680.jpg
Screenshot 680.jpg (462.32 KiB) Viewed 56 times

- I have no idea what the "complete the mission" objective's counting. Confusing. And not working correctly it seems (I did destroy and damage all of the pumps/depots with bombers/P38-Lightnings only). Bruce, I didn't look in the editor, so I have no clue why this isn't working - if the error's not to be found easily, I'll gladly help in analyzing why this happened <-> my gameplay/approach.

Very minor, rather a suggestion for future projects: The fighter/bomber spawns were well timed, but I think the new waves should arrive about 1-2 turns earlier. As it is now there are several turns of me just moving all my bombers toward the exits, with nothing else to do. That time could be better spent with the new units arriving...

Screenshot 681.jpg
Screenshot 681.jpg (739.03 KiB) Viewed 56 times

Nice balance, difficult mission. Very well scripted. I liked it. Thank you.

bru888
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Re: Bru's Scenarios

Post by bru888 » Fri Sep 14, 2018 9:40 pm

Gabe, thanks for the usual great feedback. I will look into this stuff soon. As far as the difficulty, that's intended because it was based on real life. Especially the first American mission to bomb Ploesti in August 1943, Operation Tidal Wave. I don't know if you noticed but in the Information folder there is a reprint of the Wikipedia article on Operation Tidal Wave. It was brutal, precisely because of the way the mission was conducted (low-level and without fighter support) and the ubiquity of enemy AA guns all around the oil refineries. Not so much the Axis fighters, but the AA guns.

This scenario sort of crams the campaign that began six months later into one day, with raids conducted properly at high altitude and with fighter support. Yet it was still a tough grind. According to another article in that folder (Ploesti—The Rest of the Story), "The four-month-long campaign had seen the launch of 5,675 bombing sorties . . . with nearly 14,000 tons of ordnance dropped. The sustained effort cost 282 U.S. and 38 British aircraft, but proved that persistent strikes could ruin a major industrial complex. In the end, Ploesti’s burned and battered refineries were producing just a dribble: a 90 percent reduction in petroleum intended for the Wehrmacht."
- Bru

GabeKnight
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Re: Bru's Scenarios

Post by GabeKnight » Fri Sep 14, 2018 10:38 pm

Only glanced through some of the stuff you've attached. When reading English, esp. with many technical/military expressions, I'll have to look up too many words and it's exhausing...
But I read the briefings, events and your OP, of course. The sheer numbers of aircraft involved left me surprised and astonished. :shock:
bru888 wrote:
Fri Sep 14, 2018 9:40 pm
As far as the difficulty, that's intended because it was based on real life. [...] It was brutal, precisely because of the way the mission was conducted (low-level and without fighter support) and the ubiquity of enemy AA guns all around the oil refineries. Not so much the Axis fighters, but the AA guns.
Yeah, well, the AA was brutal in the scen. The dogfighters not so much, their stats are quite weak when it comes to "large" attack.

Speaking of units... reading through some of the stuff made me admire the balancing of the units' stats in OoB, though. It seems many of the game's units are actually a good match with their "real-life" conterparts when it comes to the roles they're performing in combat.

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