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FNF Back to School Special Event 30/08/2013

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  • [AAR] FNF Back to School Special Event 30/08/2013

    D-

    That is the best mark I can give myself for this training event. I signed off after almost 3 hours of platoon leading feeling like I messed up the whole affair. I made some pretty basic mistakes which I will review here.

    Aside from a brief moment at a Biolab were I managed to get all three squads in interlocking fire positions, the evening was a tactical and training failure. I could not find any enemy force of sufficient size worthy of our platoon strength. The Biolab was an exception in the opposite direction -- a grind against overwhelming enemy numbers. We could have held our defensive posture against them for hours but that would have been of no use for training purposes.

    I made many mistakes but the primary one was the most consequential. I never successfully regrouped the platoon for a formal start and proper briefing. This was a critical error that contributed to all other problems. I will not make this mistake again.

    I had a written agenda but failed to execute it. Next time I will put more effort into creating a more explicit training program with defined outcomes. I will distribute the next training agenda prior to the next event to ensure all SLs know what is expected of them.

    I frequently had to remind SLs to give me those "copies" -- some senior officers were among the most grievous and repetitive offenders. There is no excuse for failure to immediately acknowledge a command order. Failure to do so undermines operational efficiency of the entire platoon.

    It remains my goal to learn how to run effective platoon-scale training events (think of them as the backbone of armed forces -- drill, drill, drill). After falling off this horse I will get back on and run another platoon training event on a FNF evening. As I often remind my students, failure is the path to success.

    For those who participated last night (sorry, forgot to take a screen shot of the roster) thank you for your time and patience.

    Next time will be much better.

    Brief video of the advance on Biolab and our subsequent interlocking positions:

    Last edited by E-Male; 08-31-2013, 12:45 PM.
    sigpic

  • #2
    Re: FNF Back to School Special Event 30/08/2013

    I am sorry to hear that the event did not go as planned E-male. I'd love to offer whatever planning assistance I can as though I am without a computer able to play this game I want to contribute to the continued growth of PS2 here at TG.

    On the subject of regrouping. I do not know the exact details but if your short description I accurate the lack of regrouping of the platoon is a fatal failure. Speed is obviously necessary and can push your time tables up but preparation is tantamount to warfighting; even virtual.

    This read was incredibly enlightening to me: http://www.armchairgeneral.com/tacti...embly-area.htm

    While I utilized it to focus on armored operations it most certainly can be applied to any operation within the scope of Planetside 2. Obviously with more attention on means to move it to meaningful time scales that the Auraxian battlefield requires.

    Training is important for our outfit. It is what will standardize certain methods and tactics and will help teach other leaders to operate in that manner so best of luck next time!


    EDIT: on the subject of all that pertains to the video

    I would like to use this time to vouch for the Platoon Squad Markers. I think using the Platoon Waypoint is good practice but for squad specific movements/region specific enemy calls I think that Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, Delta Markers offer a good means for the PL to minimize chatter while maximizing nuance of message.

    So for example instead of giving three back to back orders all focused around the movement of just the Platoon Waypoint you have the ability to say:


    'Charlie move to Charlie Marker'
    ='Charlie copy'
    'Delta/Alpha hold at Alpha Marker'
    ='Delta copy'
    ='Alpha copy'
    'Platoon all eyes towards Platoon Waypoint'
    =(this shouldn't require a copy)

    then

    'Delta/Alpha move towards Delta Marker in ten seconds.'
    ='Delta copy'
    ='Alpha copy'

    'Charlie sitrep.'
    ='Charlie is ineffective, enemy has high ground.'
    'Charlie move towards new Charlie Marker, expect contact at Bravo Marker.'
    ='Charlie Copy.'


    This all goes to pot if the marker system is still bugged as it was when I left :/

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: FNF Back to School Special Event 30/08/2013

      I'll just start out by saying I was charlie lead for the first few hours.

      I personally had a blast last night. We had a great turnout by our members and having such a great backbone to our squads made the whole operation very easy and fluid so thank you everyone! Also great work for everyone my squad as well as all the squads. We had a lot of fun in charlie squad joking around and performing our functions and the bounding over watch idea was very good and I'm thinking about ways to work it into my own strategy list. We may not have gotten to practice your maneuver as much as you wanted but we a did a few times and it worked out very well. I think the part at the biolab was very fluid and strong and that everyone did a great job suppressing overwhelming numbers. The interlocking defense worked very well until Charlie had to move forward to that tree. At that point I think we lost our Defensive edge by over extending into a tactically weaker position with less cover. The small fights were great we didn't lack for something to shoot at for most of the evening. Even during that transition time from Amerish to Indar I ended up leading the remaining members on an assault of Sungrey amp station where we played a pivotal role in turning that fight around, again due to our cohesion and great members.

      All in all I disagree Emale I personally found the night a great success. The overriding training concern for me was communication and cohesion and less about the maneuver itself so in that regard it was a great session. By the end we were all in the habit of copying orders and our communications about problems were quick and we reacted very well. Especially to that last fight I was in by I believe it was Zurvan amp station. We got hit by that massive TR zerg that played a shadow game on us and ended up with almost two full strength platoons at the amp station. We all reacted quickly to the situation and took up defensive positions to stem the tide. Where it went from there I'll let others tell because I left for the evening at that point. We also did everything as a platoon and it was great to see how we could all move and support each other. Like I said from a training stand point I would say it may not have gone as you planned but I think it pointed out several areas we need to work on as leaders and we worked out the kinks. Like you said originally not all fights will go as planned it is war!! I would love to have you in my platoons more often not even as a lead if you want a night off but as a reference because you tend to see areas that I personally forget to look for or acknowledge.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: FNF Back to School Special Event 30/08/2013

        Originally posted by Jgnhbz View Post
        All in all I disagree Emale I personally found the night a great success. The overriding training concern for me was communication and cohesion and less about the maneuver itself so in that regard it was a great session.
        Jg,

        Thank you for a detailed reply. I should clarify that the D- is just for my own attempt to initiate a formal training event.

        In no way is it meant to reflect on on SLs, who performed very well indeed (as you note).

        Yes, I erred in moving your squad up to the tree (I rather knew it to be too close but I was using you squad as bait to pull the enemy armour in closer for delta to take care of. Nonetheless, after getting pushed back from the tree your squad still held on to their primary position in the middle at the big rock, and did very well. I did not catch on video when you came to Delta's rescue by obliterating an enemy tank that was foolish enough to advance between Delta and Charlie.)

        Yes, we did have a good fight at the Amp station, an orderly approach and good coordination between the squads.

        I'll endeavour to capture more of the tactical movements on video next time round.

        I am almost always up for platoon leading. I find it intellectually challenging, a good test of my character (a test I occasionally fail) and an excellent opportunity for practising a wide variety of leadership and communication skills.

        There is nothing quite like leading TG members who know how to play as a team.

        Once more into the breach tonight after I wine and dine the Commander in Chief (Mrs. E-Male).
        sigpic

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: FNF Back to School Special Event 30/08/2013

          Originally posted by Ytman View Post
          On the subject of regrouping. I do not know the exact details but if your short description I accurate the lack of regrouping of the platoon is a fatal failure. Speed is obviously necessary and can push your time tables up but preparation is tantamount to warfighting; even virtual.

          I broke my own rules last night :-(

          As I note in the draft document, Squad and Platoon Management in Virtual Environments,

          "Tactical movement begins with the squad leader creating a cohesive squad. Cohesion refers to the degree to which a squad is operating as a single unit (see the section On Cohesion). One of the first acts of an effective squad leader is the call for the squad to group-up, to get together in one place, a safe place, where everyone can see everyone else. Take the time to group your squad members up at a reasonably safe location so you can brief them on your expectations and the immediate objective.

          Once all of the troops are grouped up on your position move out to the next marked objective. The squad leader moves the troops forward and constantly evaluates the situation.

          Break your squad’s journey into discrete stages. Occasionally call for the squad to halt and group up at secure locations, such as a building or behind a large rock. In this manner continue to move forward until the squad is at the front line. The front line is your closest possible position to the enemy target that can be held while still maintaining cohesion. If you are too close to the enemy your squad’s cohesion will be lost due to lack of cover, attacks on your flanks, and unfavourable force ratios. A sure sign of "too close" is when your men are frequently getting killed and you are in immanent danger of being ‘wiped out’."
          My concept of the training event is not just focused on the TG membership. The primary subject of the training drill is in fact myself. I need practice in executing both basic and complex tactical maneuvers as much as the 'rank and file' and perhaps more so as I am old, slow, and forgetful.

          Now what was it we were discussing . . .

          Oh yes, grouping up.

          The next formal training even will have a brief agenda that focuses on the following:

          1) Comm SOPs: fast copies, concise comms, more frequent sit reps

          2) Cohesion: as always, I'll be looking for a very high level of 'togetherness' within squads, as this is the basis for my other drills

          3) interlocking fire positions (see the video above for some good footage of this)

          4) bounding overwatch

          I realize that we all know theses things and have done them before.

          I also think that we could stand to improve on our comms and cohesion, make better use of squads as far as our ability to bring coordinated fire upon a shared target (interlocking squad positioning), and be much faster in grouping up (which can be achieved if all understand and practice cohesion).

          A good training exercise should take us out of the normal game play (cert acquisition and meta-objectives take a back seat) and create conditions that lend themselves to a high level of mindfulness. What are we doing, how are we doing it together, how can we improve upon our collective action?

          And it should be fun.
          sigpic

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: FNF Back to School Special Event 30/08/2013

            I wouldn't be so hard on yourself E-Male. That's 2 weeks in a row our best intentions of having a FNF have been foiled by a Bio Lab alert (why alerts go off during prime time is beyond me, but they do and that is another question entirely). But as Jgnhbz said, we had a good time anyway. :)
            "The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it." - George Bernard Shaw



            Comment


            • #7
              Re: FNF Back to School Special Event 30/08/2013

              A good training exercise should take us out of the normal game play (cert acquisition and meta-objectives take a back seat) and create conditions that lend themselves to a high level of mindfulness. What are we doing, how are we doing it together, how can we improve upon our collective action?
              Certainly! The training exercise is when you try new things and imprint the tried and tested things. I envy your ability to record this game and it sessions as it is undoubtedly helpful to understand what is going on in a more formal light. Hopefully people will come to the forums to understand what the training operation is meant for and what they should expect of it.

              On the subject of 'interlocking fires'; this is certainly the most efficient use of a platoon's squad elements. I was working on an Armored write-up and there was a wonderful graphic of two Armored elements concentrating fires on an enemy position ('interlocking') while a third element would maneuver to a flank. I would only suggest making 'interlocking fires' a step in a series of either defensive or offensive actions and not a means to an ends itself. (so as to mean that a training exercise would experiment with means to utilize 'interlocking fires (combined fires)' with a flanking or retreating maneuver.

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: FNF Back to School Special Event 30/08/2013

                Exactly as randy put it don't be so hard it was a good time so thats the best part!! we could also work on taking our members in to VR training for some time practicing without enemy fire just to get it started and get us in a good mindset before we take blueberries in to get a good start up of grouping up and falling in.

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