Understanding progress and situation?

Discussion in 'Command Ops Series' started by Grim.Reaper, Mar 22, 2015.

  1. Grim.Reaper

    Grim.Reaper Member

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    This is a general question and hope the game experts can lend their knowledge. I like the fact the game allows you to manage at a high level versus micro managing, big win for me. However, would love some input as to how others monitor the game and recognize when you have to alter plans. For example, what do you look for (what screens and info) to know whether engaged units are doing well or doing poorly? What specific warning signs do you look at? I don't want to have to click on every unit either, especially since I like commanding at a higher level so wasn't sure if there was some global way to know.

    I know every situations is different so looking for general tips.
     
  2. dinsdale

    dinsdale Member

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    Grim,

    I am not an expert, but here is the number 1 indicator for me:

    Attack progression. If your units are not moving forward as quickly as you timetabled your attack, its not going well. You don't need to review every company, but you can see when your line is stationary or moving backwards. You can sometimes still win these stalled attacks, but you should be preparing for the loss, either to commit some reserve units or figure out what you're going to attack with and when you can schedule it.

    When you see a broad indicator like that, you need to drill down and check cohesion, morale, fatigue and unit strength, you will need to figure out how bad its going to get and whether any of your units are going to be usable after the attack fails.
     
  3. john connor

    john connor Member

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    Certainly attack progress, I agree. In terms of things to monitor - regardless of their task - then I always watch fatigue, morale, suppression, supply and casualties, not necessarily in that order. Bit obvious, I suppose. The delay system, plus the realistic modelling of how difficult it is to withdraw under fire means that you have to make relatively early decisions on when to abandon something and pull back, I think. If you wait (whether unit defending or attacking) until you see units retreating, fatigue over 70%, morale under 20%, whilst the suppression bar is full red then they probably are already lost to your command and will make their own decisions. I have found that units can be decently operative on fairly high fatigue levels, but can't do anything (obviously) at max suppression levels and if morale sinks below 25% then you're too late. The number of casualties usually mirrors these readings. Tank units are prone to retreat, or even rout, even when they take less than 25% casualties (2 or 3 tanks out of ten knocked out, say), especially if it all happens in short space, whereas infantry can sometimes (not always)take slightly higher casualties without running. Running (infantry retreating in a panic, I guess) is a major thing to try and stop in defensive scenarios when usually this behaviour will result in arty massacres. You can have them dug in in the best possible position but if a unit of around 100 men takes around 30 casualties then they will often get up out of the trenches and retreat, exposing themselves worse. All in all, I think (if possible) it's better to have some kind of reserve and try to move that in to assist rather than pull back men having a hard time. If you have to pull men back then try to cover them with arty. But, all these little situations are different, aren't they, so it's difficult to suggest definite things.... Certainly I watch all orders for progress though and re-issue them if things look stuck. Sometimes things can actually be just stuck (bugged, I mean) - usually there's clues in the unit logs - long lines of reports to the same effect or no reports at all. But I'm no expert. I just muddle through. It's nice to watch the experts, and sometimes fun to play them and see how easy it is for them to walk all over you without you having a clue how they are doing it.....
     
  4. Grim.Reaper

    Grim.Reaper Member

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    Thanks everyone for some good tips to look at.....I am still struggling a bit to understand if you can get an overall assessment of the situation without having to drill down and look at every unit. Since I like playing by just making high-level orders to HQs and such, I was hoping that I would be able to assess the battlefield at the same global level without having to look at the details of every unit. I know you can also toggle different status markers on the unit counters for various status (i.e. morale, ammo, etc.), but you have to cycle through each of the status to get a complete picture. Unless I am missing some kind of status you can see globally on the map and counters, it would be a nice addition if there was some kind of overall unit status that takes all the important factors into consideration and reports on the health of the situation. For example, if things are going well, highlight the unit in green, if things are going bad, highlight the unit in red, if things are going pretty evenly, highlight the unit in yellow. Doesn't have to work exactly like this, but just an example. Then I could survey the map at one glance and see where things need my attention. I realize something like this wouldn't be for everyone and certainly should be an optional user preference.

    Of course if something like this already exists and I am just missing how to use it, then please let me know. My main goal is to stay playing at a high-level (vs micro managing) and that includes both in issuing orders and monitoring the battlefield.
     
  5. Konrad_Novak

    Konrad_Novak Member

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    Grim.Reaper, use infobox statuses (ones that you switch by F1, F2 etc.) to get quick assessment of the situation. Yes, you have to cycle through several of them to get the general idea, but there's no better thing AFAIK. For example, switch to rout status, look for orange (retreat/retreat recovery status) and red (rout/rout recovery statuses) colors. Too much of those and almost no progress? The attack is going bad. Too much of those and enemy attack is going well? Time to concentrate arty and send the reinforcements (well, actually you probably won't have time if things are too bad, but you've got the idea). Useful infobox statuses for a quick look-see:

    F4 - Combat power (remember, it's not linear, so "4"=2x"3", 5=2x"4") and rout status (those colors). Two for the price of one :)
    F6 - all of them, but especially Cohesion and Morale. Remember - lighter color is better, darker color is worse.
    F7 - again, all of them are equally good. Arty Ammo works very well with filter "8-8" (which shows only bombard arty), Fuel infobox works wonderful when selecting a unit for a deep raid. Works well with "5" or "6" filters.

    F4 is good for the most general idea, F6 is for a little more info. F7 for very specific tasks. Get used to using hotkeys, not the on-screen buttons - it's much quicker.

    The interface of CO2 is very informative (albeit a little less ergonomic than CO1 in my opinion). You just have to get used to it. And remember - all those number and graphs mean something only when you look at them in the context of the current situation. If your defense is doing bad, maybe enemy attack troops are even in worse condition? If your attacking units are in bad shape, maybe the enemy is almost wiped out? Always consider the context. I guess it comes only from experience.
     
  6. john connor

    john connor Member

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    The side icons with extended icon info on, combined with the F keys Konrad mentions must provide a bit of instant info. I haven't really worked out what the extended info icons are though....
     
  7. Daz

    Daz Member

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    There is some excellent advice in the posts above.

    The extended info icons are superb. It has revolutionised the way I watch, and understand the game.
    Its really helps to view the ebb and flow of the battle, but it has its limitations of course, as you only get them on a local scale, so needs quite a bit of panning if you have multiple battles going on at the same time in far flung corners of the map.

    I try to prioritize which battles I pay most attention to, by trying to identify where the centre of gravity is.

    The mini map is good for jumping around the battlefield while zoomed in.
    Just single click, or click and drag in the small window to move locations.
     
  8. Konrad_Novak

    Konrad_Novak Member

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    Here's a small visual aid:
    [​IMG]
     
  9. *budd*

    *budd* Member

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    what are the different symbols for deployment, are they supposed to match the orders icons? I like to see a choice on whats displayed in the extended info boxes and the number of boxes displayed, also a hotkey for on/off. When units are clustered there's a lot of overlap.
     
  10. *budd*

    *budd* Member

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    went and looked at my last recording...duh should of thought of that earlier. What i see for the deployment symbols in the extended info little windows are taking cover, deployed, moving, dug-in, entrenched- any others.
     
  11. john connor

    john connor Member

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    Many thanks for the guide. That's helpful!
     
  12. altipueri

    altipueri Member

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    Does "no orders" , the pink square in Konrad's illustration, mean that they doing nothing other than having a quiet cigarette out of sight of their officer, or are they actually awake and alert and sober?
     
  13. Greg

    Greg Member

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    The empty square (white) means it has no orders. When the empty square is pink , the unit is receiving and processing new orders.
     
  14. Konrad_Novak

    Konrad_Novak Member

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    Exactly. I've just checked it with the old manual, and my screenshot is wrong. Let me quote:

    "If you have turned orders delay on, a pink background in the Info Box tells you that orders have been sent to a unit but it has not received
    them yet".
     
  15. john connor

    john connor Member

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    Ah. So there's a manual covering all this....Thanks. That's helpful too. ;) I know Dave did 36 pages worth so far, but wasn't sure what they covered, not having got round to reading them yet.....

    I always assumed that units with no orders were in a defensive posture (foetal position?)
     
  16. James Sterrett

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    I'm a big fan of the F4 display - as Konrad notes, it is a two-for-one.

    The wider answer, though, is that *having a plan* is key. If you know what you want to accomplish, and how you expect to accomplish it, then you can watch for signs that you are not accomplishing it. It's that plan that tells you if your forces are keeping up with their tasks, and if the enemy is doing what you expected - and when one of those is not happening, you either need to commit your reserve, or change the plan and issue a lot of new orders.
     

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