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Author Topic: CPX 26-04-2008  (Read 2117 times)
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« on: 9 November 2008, 17:50:19 »

Tacops CPX april 26 2008

What is a cpx:

A cpx is an umpire controlled game where two teams play Tacops in TCP mode.
Who were playing:
In this case 3 players on each side with a few observers.
How do you know when a cpx is held:
Every now and than if somebody wants to run a game he sends out an email on the Tacops mailing list or he posts a topic at Battlefronts Tacops forum.
What do you need:
You need a good (virus/bug free)mac or windows pc.
For communications we use the IRC chat program( this one is very reliable and runs good along Tacops)
What do you need to know to play:
Just the basics to play Tacops, playing the training scenario with the tutorial is a good help.
When you join an expereinced group of members guide you to the process.
After each battle the players write an AAR and most of the time discuss the battle while oonline afterwards.
In fact you can learn a lot about the game and its mechanics.

Here is an example of the invitation from last CPx s umpire:

Today's CPX was based upon the April 1999 Marine Corps Gazatte's Tactical Decision Game 99-4 Battle Along the Tziepov, by then Major John F. Schmitt USMCR. The general situation was that Blue Forces "(advancing north with the mission of destroying 'Red Forces' en route to an operational objective some 30km north)" and Red Forces "(advancing south) have clashed head to head along the trace of the Tziepov River." The OOB's were essentially as described in the TDG. "Upon contact, in an effort to sieze the initiative, both forces have started shifting forces west, trying to turn the other's flank and establish a bridgehead on the far side of the river."


This map is my interpretation of the map features in Tactical Decision Games #99-4 Battle Along the Tziepov, and 99-6 Battle Along the Tziepov Continued authored by then Major John F. Schmitt, USMCR. The TDGs can be found in the April 1999 and June 1999 editions of the Marine Corps Gazette respectively, published by the Marines Corps Association.


Terrain is as follows:
E0 - Clear
E1 - R1
Towns - Town/R2
Woods - Woods/R2
Orchards - Woods/Clear.

Map997c will be submitted to Paul Csokay for posting on tacopshq.com for future use.

Here are the players involved:

The RedFor Players:
Anthony Eischens - 1st Mech Bn (rein), Regt'l AT Battery, Regt'l Reconnaissance Company Henk Stoffers - CO, 3rd Mech Battalion (rein), Fire Support Coordinator TimA - T-72M Tank Battalion, Regt'l Anti-Air Battery

2nd Mech Battalion (rein) was planned but went unemployed.

The BluFor Players:
Frank 'Brains' Moody - 1st Battalion (Tank-heavy), Alpha Company 1st LAR (rein) Bernard Cousin - CO, 2nd Battalion (Mech-heavy) Brad Leyte - 4th Host Nation Battalion Matt 'Rattler' Olmer - 5th Host Nation Battalion, Fire Support Coordinator

3rd Battalion (Motorized) was planned but went unemployed.

Neutral Observer: Paul Csokay

Both forces had a battalion of artillery in direct support, 152mm for RedFor and 155mm for BluForrespectively. RedFor also had a 122mm MLR system in DS. Air Support was essentially what comes automatically from the TacOps engine.

Friendly Fog of War was in effect

RedFor consisted mainly of the BMP-2 w/AT-5 Spandrel combo, T-72M tanks, BRDM2 recon, BRDM2-AT, and ZSU-23/4.

USMC BluFor consisted primarily of AAV-7P, M60A3, TOW HMMWV, 81mm Mortar HMMWV, LAV-25, and LAV-AT. The grunts anti-tank weapon was M47 Dragon. Host Nation BluFor consisted of Leo1 tanks, M113 APC, Milan ATGMs. The HN forces also had the only BluFor air defense assets, "Javelin" shoulder launched SAMs.

Umpires AAR:

At the start, both forces start in the extreme eastern corners, RedFor in the NE and BluFor in the SE. For whatever reason BluFor seemed to more out of its assembly area somewhat quicker, although that may have been a function of RedFor be restricted somewhat by bridges to their close proximity west and south.

In what seemed like forever, the two forces advanced toward the two Tziepov crossings at Thorpe Bridge and Fouse Bridge. Red seemed to be feinting toward the closer Thorpe Bridge while sending what appeared to be their main body around through Emamiville and onto the Fouse Bridge. Blue seemed to have a somewhat balanced advance toward the two bridges although there was what appeared to be a slight weighting toward Thorpe Bridge.

Within the firt 8-10 turns as Blue's lead elements were closing on Thorpe a Red Recon-by-Air-Strike on the bridge actually took it, the Umpire Tools/Engineering Bridge, down. Most of us seemed surprised, I for one had not seen that before. An urgent request from Blue asked for bridging support, so I added two M60 AVLB's to the rear of their main force.

Despite my careful placement while viewing the map in terrain analysis mode, Red was experiencing some difficulty crossing some of my bridges, the so-called "pile up routine" taking its effect. In the spirit to keep things flowing I magic-moved some Red, and later some Blue, units that were hung up for what seemed to be inordinate amounts of time at bridge crossings.

In the end, time was our collective main enemy, and after 4+ hours we called it a game. Prior to ending, Blue's Alpha LAR, and 1st Battalion had effectively used artillery and mortar smoke to cover its crossing of a AVLB at the then destroyed Thorpe Bridge site, as well as "concealed" AAV-7 amphibious crossing, and had pushed 1-1.5km north of the crossing before entering in a sharp engagement with Red tanks and BMP's. 4th Host Nation occupied Leon Ridge while Blue 2nd Battalion held the Fouse Bridge site, and even crossed some AAV's across the river and up onto Lafferty Heights. Red units were somewhat non-descript in the scenario so I hope that individual red commander's chime in with who actually did what. It appeared to me that Tony went west-southwest while Tim and Henk went south.

In the shortened end, it appeared that both sides effectively contained each other, although given another hour or so blue may have punched through along Highway 9 toward the Clarkson and Heredia Bridges as Blue seemed to be beginning to take a toll on the Red units. Only time would have told.

Technical Issues:
This was only my second attempt at hosting a Tacops Multiplayer CPX. TacOps did crash three time in the course of the scenario which I'm sure amped up frustration on the part of the players. Despite the first time surprising me, all three I can trace back to using the umpire tools to add a player, change a PIN, Magic-Move a unit, or add something requested. I wanted to try to save each individual players orders that they had already input. It appeared that if I tried to use the tool that pulls in an individual player's orders, in the attempt not to lose them when I send the SitUpdate, if they had not yet "finished" their orders, a fatal error would occur and TacOps would have to close, causing me to have to restart with the last autosave and have everyone rejoin.

The question is that if a Host/Umpire does something that now causes the engine to require a SitUpdate to all players, how does the umpire send the SitUpdate without overwriting player orders, or causing this fatal error when selecting a player who had, according to the "Network Status" not finsished his orders?

One other point was the somewhat slowness of the combat turn. Realizing that the turn does not end at the same time for all computers, overall the turn does not end until everyone's computer completes the turn. Both sides and on the admin channel various people called out to others to ensure that "clicks" vice "animations" were selected for combat resolution, so without inspecting everyone's computer, I can only guess that everyone had selected "clicks".

All in all I enjoyed it. I enjoyed reading the communication and teamwork between players. It was also amazing to see how many unit markers were flowing across the map.


My topics are about my personal opinion, my thoughts and what I think. They do not reflect the official opinion of the ministry of defense of the Netherlands.
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