Monday, June 2, 2014

A Light Infantry Assault

Yesterday I felt the need for a change of pace away from WW2 East Front gaming. Deciding it was high time I became more familiar with the ARMA III editor, I decided to attempt to create a simple mission reflecting an assault by a Light Infantry squad against a prepared position.

An overview of the map and the mission. This is my first run through of the mission outside the editor and at Regular difficulty.
I like the new editor. It is familiar to me from Arma II and Iron Front, but overall seems less clunky. There are a number of features to really help streamline mission creation. I suspect that after I've had a chance to practice a bit more with it, I could knock out a pretty complete simple mission in under an hour.


Inbound in the chopper. Our ingress route is up a valley from the sea and the LZ is masked from the enemy positions by a hill. Unfortunately, this puts us a bit of a hike away from where we need to attack.

My squad disembarks and assembles.

Our first task is to move to the old LZ up the road that has been designated as our Objective Rally Point. The Rally Point is about halfway to the objective.

I start the squad out moving quietly with an order to hold fire. I don't want to alert the enemy to our presence before I have to.

My squad moves toward the objective in wedge formation. I've changed our behavior to "aware" from "stealth." I don't expect contact yet and we need to get moving.

It'll be dawn soon. We're only about 70 meters short of the rally point and I'm getting cautious. Such an obvious landmark in view of the enemy OP is bound to be under some sort of observation.

As we move into the old LZ we come under fire from a recon team. I order the squad to engage and open fire. Just prior to moving into the objective I organized the squad into two fire teams. While Red Team took up an overwatch position, I took White Team into the LZ. On reaching the rally point, we're assigned the new task of eliminating the enemy observation post.

Before Red Team took out the enemy Recon team leader, we lost one KIA. 
 This is one of my gripes about ARMA III. At Recruit difficulty, both side could bang away at each other for minutes without causing a casualty. Here, at Regular difficulty an enemy soldier, in the dark and in the open confronted with an entire squad fires once and instantly kills one of my men. The accuracy goes from something that seems reasonable based on everything I've read about firefights to laser-like one-shot-one-kill sniping from every bad guy out there. I think it is possible to adjust the accuracy of the enemy and I'm probably going to tone it down. It seems really over the top.

Down one man and with the enemy soldier eliminated, it's time to go back to stealth and holding fire. Rather than moving directly up the road under the eyes (and guns) of the OP in the growing light, I decide to flank around to the left, using the valley and tree cover to screen my movement. I start the squad moving by bounding overwatch to the left.

The dead enemy recon team leader.

Team White providing overwatch for Team Red as they move toward the next waypoint. The ridgeline hides us from the OP.

Team White and my character on the crest of the ridgeline, overlooking the valley I intend to move across. Now that I'm here I can see that we can be observed from the objective. I should probably re-evaluate my route.

Before I have a chance to plan an alternate approach I spot an enemy MRAP on patrol. Armed with a heavy machine gun, this guy could be big trouble for my squad.

Red Team, which has the majority of the heavy weapons moves into a position where they too can see the MRAP. I quickly give the order to fire and our AT gunner takes out the vehicle with a well place missile!
At this point we're engage by a patrol at the foot of the hill across the valley. I can't yet break myself of the habit of needing to try and be the shooter when I really ought to be commanding the squad, so I shouldered my rifle and opened up. Of course, that's just what the bad guys needed to pinpoint me.I should have been giving the orders to allow White Team to engage the enemy along with Red Team, bringing both SAWs to bear and likely suppressing the enemy patrol. Instead I quickly became a lead collector and died.

Despite my whinging about the super-accuracy of the enemy troops, getting shot was my own fault. I was in an exposed position and attracted attention to myself rather than commanding the squad correctly to build fire superiority over the enemy troops. That's an important lesson to remember. Combined with learning about the editor I'll count this scenario as a success even if I never do complete it as a Regular.

Update: I've made this mission available through the Steam Workshop for friends. If you want to give it a try let me known via my Steam account: demiller.