A new modern campaign?

Gnarly

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I don't own any of the modern CM titles and don't intend to, but I do wonder if having the majority of the fights in urban environments would be appealing to players? Maybe have the map set up similar to the BB campaign, ie towns being key points strung together by open, wooded, and village areas?
Agreed. Urban warfare is rarely much fun in either modern or WW2, and the political/ethical aspects would additional make it very unappealing. I think @Ithikial may have role-played this somewhat in his recent SF2 campaign? Particularly when an Allied commander decided to drop heavy arty on a populated city......

It also all but negates the vehicles; they become mostly just fire support to the infantry. The speed and long distance firepower of modern fighting vehicles is what really shines in these games, so countryside maps that gives commanders maneuvering (and ambushing) options is important I think.

That being said, in SF2 urban environments are (IMO) the preferred terrain for unconventionals, as
It also all but negates the vehicles
. They can bring their IED, VBIEDs and spies to the fore, none of which are as effective (if at all) in open desert terrain.
 

Stafford

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Maybe have like a 50/50 mix so you get opportunities with both kinds of warfare? I dunno, some guys might enjoy the short range fighting of urban environments, they might also enjoy self-flagellation as a hobby. :p
 

Gnarly

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I'd go so far is 1:3 or 1:4 urban:countryside. Where countryside would still be critical objectives rather just the next map area; e.g. critical rail/road bridges, major road junctions, small strategic village or town, hill or even a small bit of infrastructure (e.g. Donetsk Airport.....).

So I guess consider the possibilities of a non-hex map approach, which allows focus on the above, rather than just having a map for every adjacent hex. Ideas ideas!

Examples 5 Lions Campaign:

 

Concord

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Urban fighting wouldn't be interesting in CM? Not convinced, but listening to input.
I think the urban terrain in CMBS looks quite good and I was imagining gritty street to street firefights.
House to house, streets into fire lanes, parks and gardens, wide avenues, dense areas, courtyards, industrial sections, warehouse districts. Intense.
Like I said though, nothing set in stone, and this thread is doing the job of discussing where to go with it.

One advantage about making it more open is we could use more of the maps available.
An advantage of making it urban is the battle maps could be smaller (can chop up larger maps to make many).

Considering the pros and cons of zones vs hexgrid. Both have their appeal.
The zone ones look prettier. Easier to stack counters/units together visually.
The hex ones allow for much more movement and maneuvering, which appeals to me more.
I could create a large illustrated one with tons of zones.

P.S. I will make the campaign purely fictional. It is an exercise in tactical thinking and problem solving.
And there will we be no civilians hurt, real or digital...they have all evacuated.
 
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Gnarly

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Not saying it wouldn't be interesting, just saying that having every battle as an urban battle might be tiring (spelling?) after awhile. The armour/cavalry squadrons would be chomping at the reins to break out and interdict the enemies supply chain/rear/(insert other excuse here).. ;D
 

Stafford

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Personally I think urban fighting is interesting, but to play it is unforgiving, you can lose a platoon in a single turn if you're unlucky or your opponent pulls off a good ambush.
Trying to extract an opponent from an urban environment is like pulling teeth. I get the impression this is why not many people enjoy playing it.
 

Rico

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Urban fighting wouldn't be interesting in CM? Not convinced, but listening to input.
I think the urban terrain in CMBS looks quite good and I was imagining gritty street to street firefights.
House to house, streets into fire lanes, parks and gardens, wide avenues, dense areas, courtyards, industrial sections, warehouse districts. Intense.
Like I said though, nothing set in stone, and this thread is doing the job of discussing where to go with it.

One advantage about making it more open is we could use more of the maps available.
An advantage of making it urban is the battle maps could be smaller (can chop up larger maps to make many).

Considering the pros and cons of zones vs hexgrid. Both have their appeal.
The zone ones look prettier. Easier to stack counters/units together visually.
The hex ones allow for much more movement and maneuvering, which appeals to me more.
I could create a large illustrated one with tons of zones.

P.S. I will make the campaign purely fictional. It is an exercise in tactical thinking and problem solving.
And there will we be no civilians hurt, real or digital...they have all evacuated.
Similar thoughts my side on zones vs hexes (the map not being interactive like on Vassal, stacking of counters not an option)

You could build map with both types of terrain ... small city in centre with both flanks open countryside.

The CM battle doesn't literally have to cover the whole zone/hex, but only a representative section of where the actual fighting is taking place.
 

Gnarly

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Some extra European maps...
 

Abbasid111

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I find UKR vs Russia to be a more even matchup in Black Sea
And I admit Iike playing as Ukrainian but I like underdogs haha
There is no problem I can see with the campaign being centered around a MOUT environment.
Maybe initially setting the campaign as the approach to the city or built up area?
 

nektoman

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@Concord I'm 100% in if you will do that in BS!

I've been thinking about campaign designing in CMBS too, even had several ideas, but this case still seems too difficult for me.

I have one map designed and another one is in work, both have urban areas. They have more than 2 km size and can be cut to pieces. I will be glad if they can be used in your campaign.

What about environment - I think the main map can be an agglomeration where city changes to towns, villages, fields etc - something similar to real Donetsk area in Ukraine. 100% of city will be too monotonous.
 

Lethaface

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Some great insights, thanks!

CMSF2 is set in the 1990's? I didn't know that!
Good to see there is an interest in CMBS as well. Wasn't sure about its popularity.

In terms of balancing, remember that all fights would be quick-battles, with some restrictions to points and equipment.
There won't be much opportunity to shape the scenario other than that.

If US forces have a noticeable edge, there may be a way to soften that issue a bit via purchasing restrictions.
I'm even considering largely infantry/mechanized forces clashing in a city, without much (or any?) heavy armour.
So what about the CMBS Russian forces vs Ukrainian forces? How do they compare?
No it's in modeled in 2007-2008, but people make all kind of maps/scenario's for it ;-).

If only QB's are considered, it will be more difficult to balance regular Syrians (especially for ME). The uncons could be decent enough in pure urban maps.

Sp I agree with others that Blue on Blue is more easy to do. At the same time depending on the backstory of the campaign, Syrian forces are quite capable of defending. In a campaign system, I guess it's less important that opposite sides for one battle aren't 100 'in balance'?

There was a campaign just completed (didn't participate), all posts have been opened up:


--
Regarding CMBS: Rus vs Ukr seems more balanced than Rus vs USA. A mix of some USA and UKR forces could be interesting as well?

Personally I don't mind playing with Rus against USA. It's a interesting challenge, although I won't really like to play a competitive QB ME where the US player mainly buys APS Abrams and Javelin teams.
 

Ithikial

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Suggest taking a look through the Five Lions forum. All the sub-forums are public now so you can get some ideas and asses what worked well and what didn't.

A few tips for modern warfare settings:
- Narrative helps. Give players a reason to fight.
- Forces are inherently not balanced. If you expect Russian and US forces to go toe to toe (or especially Syrians vs US) don't expect a fun campaign with Red Force having much of a chance. Design the campaign (and narrative accordingly).
- Bigger is not always better. Fighting over a small geography and time period keeps the fighting 'local' and easier to write a narrative.
- Prep everything in advance before anything goes public and players signed up. Maps, forces, campaign maps etc. Rushing to get things done while players are waiting will lead to disengagement by players and likely mistakes on your part as a GM.
- Never managed to interlink CM and ARMA3 but always wanted to. Would be great for campaign narrative and possible little bonus' in CM missions.
- Know the editor back to front so you have all the tricks at your disposal to give a varied experience.
- Force composition. Control this in some way and encourage a variety of forces to prevent engagements becoming repetitive and stale. This is a little harder to do in CM:BS compared to CMSF2. If you go CMBS I suggest using the 'militia mods' for Russian and Ukraine to give that extra bit of variety again.
- And have a mix of rural and urban maps. Expect urban fights to be bloody. Having just open fields is boring and makes all infantry formations feel 'worthless' in a campaign sense.

All for now. :)
 

Lethaface

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Personally I think urban fighting is interesting, but to play it is unforgiving, you can lose a platoon in a single turn if you're unlucky or your opponent pulls off a good ambush.
Trying to extract an opponent from an urban environment is like pulling teeth. I get the impression this is why not many people enjoy playing it.
I too do like urban fighting, both modern and WW2. It does take time and energy, but plenty of tactical options. Also I feel that vehicles in urban fighting are underestimated. Sure, they have to adapt but having some 125mm / 25 rapid fire armored shoot and scoot capability around the corner makes clearing buildings much more easy. :)

But like others state, some variety is nice.

With regards to sizes I'd say that 500m x 500m is on the short side; a battalion seems overkill for such maps. Although it would be a real slugfest :)
A company of infantry or less would more appropriate imo.

To illustrate, IIRC the RPG-29 and Pz Faust 3 are quite accurate until 400-500m? For some ATGMs 500m maps is on the short side (although there are ATGMS designed for <1500m).
 

Rico

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Suggest taking a look through the Five Lions forum. All the sub-forums are public now so you can get some ideas and asses what worked well and what didn't.

A few tips for modern warfare settings:
- Narrative helps. Give players a reason to fight.
- Forces are inherently not balanced. If you expect Russian and US forces to go toe to toe (or especially Syrians vs US) don't expect a fun campaign with Red Force having much of a chance. Design the campaign (and narrative accordingly).
- Bigger is not always better. Fighting over a small geography and time period keeps the fighting 'local' and easier to write a narrative.
- Prep everything in advance before anything goes public and players signed up. Maps, forces, campaign maps etc. Rushing to get things done while players are waiting will lead to disengagement by players and likely mistakes on your part as a GM.
- Never managed to interlink CM and ARMA3 but always wanted to. Would be great for campaign narrative and possible little bonus' in CM missions.
- Know the editor back to front so you have all the tricks at your disposal to give a varied experience.
- Force composition. Control this in some way and encourage a variety of forces to prevent engagements becoming repetitive and stale. This is a little harder to do in CM:BS compared to CMSF2. If you go CMBS I suggest using the 'militia mods' for Russian and Ukraine to give that extra bit of variety again.
- And have a mix of rural and urban maps. Expect urban fights to be bloody. Having just open fields is boring and makes all infantry formations feel 'worthless' in a campaign sense.

All for now. :)
@Ithikial certainly doesn't use the "fly by the seat of my pants" approach to campaign design. :LOL:
 

Rico

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Here is a 500m zoomed in section of the map above.
Plenty of room for firefights. Could even go smaller.

View attachment 20446
500m map for a built up European city section is probably quite adequate ... although you could probably dominate a long, straight flat major avenue with fire over a couple of km's with modern guns.

Farmland/countryside with modern stuff, especially tanks probably needs to be 2000m + minimum.
 

Concord

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The Brigade Battles campaign was up and running quite quickly.
Based on Rico's and Nathangun's campaign systems.
I made the rules short and simple, and the bean-counting super easy.

Each counter on the map represents a company, one company per hex.
Put a 'sanity limit' of 2 companies max that can attack at a time into a hex.

I didn't put much of a narrative spin on things other than to base it on an actual historical operation.
I kind of let the battles themselves and the evolution of the campaign tell the story.
 

Concord

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I've got it! The narrative story for the campaign.

The rival factions are the sinister Rothschild Illuminati and a diabolical cabal of mega corporations called McMonsanto, who are desperately sending in their private armies to retrieve a fabled object from a crashed alien ship, which can extend life by a thousand years (and penis size by several inches).

Both sides are desperate for the object because their leaders are advanced in years and have small penises. No expense will be spared. The soldiers in their private armies have been grown in underground labs. Just slightly DNA enhanced, they are bigger, tougher, and meaner than regular big tough mean guys and they are paid much higher than standard hourly rates.

Which private mercenary army will win? Which CEO's will live for a thousand years with remarkable appendages...and rule the world? YOU decide!

Too much?
 

nektoman

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The soldiers in their private armies have been grown in underground labs. Just slightly DNA enhanced, they are bigger, tougher, and meaner than regular big tough mean guys and they are paid much higher than standard hourly rates.
I hope these guys still can tuck into a tank/IFV and we will have some armor on the battleground.
 

Abbasid111

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I've got it! The narrative story for the campaign.

The rival factions are the sinister Rothschild Illuminati and a diabolical cabal of mega corporations called McMonsanto, who are desperately sending in their private armies to retrieve a fabled object from a crashed alien ship, which can extend life by a thousand years (and penis size by several inches).

Both sides are desperate for the object because their leaders are advanced in years and have small penises. No expense will be spared. The soldiers in their private armies have been grown in underground labs. Just slightly DNA enhanced, they are bigger, tougher, and meaner than regular big tough mean guys and they are paid much higher than standard hourly rates.

Which private mercenary army will win? Which CEO's will live for a thousand years with remarkable appendages...and rule the world? YOU decide!

Too much?
Do the mercenaries also have enhanced...ahh length?
Would give new meaning to 'is that a cannon in your pocket or are you just happy to see me?'
 
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