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Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

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  • Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

    Last night Randy asked everyone to group up in threes (MAX, ENG, Medic). The end result was great as we had a heck of a firefight and won the biolab (we also had the benefit of a majority population on sight, according to one report).

    Nonetheless, I thought the tactic merited some comments here. Did the TRIAD fireteams work in such an environment?

    1) More time needs to be given for fireteams to group up. It takes time for everyone to get into a triad.

    2) Visible identification of your triad becomes an issue. I can only speak of my own experience, but the only way it work for me was when I just gave up and attached myself to someone I knew (Daddy) -- triad or not -- and eventually gave up on that and just did what I thought an Eng should do -- stay alive, stay back, smoke when appropriate, heal when possible.

    Reforming as a triad is also an issue. Takes time. Where is my team?

    Communication becomes a challenge. I could communicate with Daddy via squad channel, which in this instance was fairly free of traffic. A pack area with many triads all using proximity is a bit of organizational nightmare.

    Overall, I am unable to say that we actually held up as a triad for very long (I have no idea who was our medic, again, not his fault).

    I am unable to judge the actually operational effectiveness of other triads last night (did teams actually maintain themselves as TRIADS for significant periods?)

    My comments are not meant as criticism of the plan, Randy, or others.

    I am simply trying to assess the TRIAD concept in a platoon-size operation in a condensed environment.

    Did we really have TRIADS in the end, or just a large group of MAXs, Medics, and Engs working in close cooperation as a large group?

    Comments on YOUR experience please.
    Last edited by E-Male; 06-05-2013, 01:03 PM.
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  • #2
    Re: Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

    I agree!, trying to make out names in a group of 40 other names while warping into the base and tracers going all over the place is next to impossible.
    I think after doing this once that squads in this case are better for organization.
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    • #3
      Re: Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

      What about assigning each squad a role. Alpha can be the max squad, bravo engineers, charlie medics, delta is a mix of all three or LA. I know that some people may not like the role giving to them but you dont need a fully certed repair tool to repair a max (same thing with medics) this way the platoon can be organized much faster and it will help everyone know whos around them.

      Just an idea =)

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      • #4
        Re: Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

        What about assigning each squad a role. Alpha can be the max squad, bravo engineers, charlie medics, delta is a mix of all three or LA. I know that some people may not like the role giving to them but you dont need a fully certed repair tool to repair a max (same thing with medics) this way the platoon can be organized much faster and it will help everyone know whos around them.

        Just an idea =)

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        • #5
          Re: Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

          Originally posted by ghostshooter101 View Post
          What about assigning each squad a role. Alpha can be the max squad, bravo engineers, charlie medics, delta is a mix of all three or LA. I know that some people may not like the role giving to them but you dont need a fully certed repair tool to repair a max (same thing with medics) this way the platoon can be organized much faster and it will help everyone know whos around them.

          Just an idea =)
          I think this takes it in the direction of the problem itself -- breaking up existing units is seldom a good idea.

          Keep fireteams within squads, and squads together. This builds upon the existing comm structure (squad comms) and utilizes existing relationships as opposed to asking everyone to form new relationships/teams.
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          • #6
            Re: Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

            I agree with your points, EMale. In fact, I pretty much expected it to break down after the initial wave. In my case, my fireteam went down together and respawned together and went back in (well, at least once anyway, lol). I am not sure how many people did this, but I am guessing it was the exception and not the rule. Also, it is a new tactic and something I think we need to try a few more times until everyone gets on the same page, and we work out the kinks. I think key to this tactic in a prolonged fight is the part about holding spawn until you are pretty sure your whole triad is down (and no medics can get to you), and then respawning together.

            OTOH, and as I remarked in RAGE's post, I believe that the simple fact of forming up into groups of 3 immediately and expressly impressed upon everyone in the platoon (TG and non TG alike) the importance of teamwork in a Bio Lab / Max Crash. I see enemies doing this to great effect in pairs with Engis, but we can never seem to do this. It boggles my mind the lack of teamwork. Again in a general / faction sense, with a platoon with a lot of pubbies, TG regulars being the exception to that.

            I say let's keep trying and see how we get better at teamwork after we have done it a few more times.

            The problem with overly complicated organizational schemes is that they just do not get implemented in game. Too many people are impatient, don't follow instructions, or simply lack discipline. Therefore it has to be pretty simple and easy to explain and implement. And then there will still be a bunch of people who still don't follow along. lol

            You are correct in the sense it will take more time to form up, especially since this is a new tactic. But in some of the cases we needed to get in quickly. Also, I have been trying to get us to move around, form up, and change kits, etc. a little quicker in general. It seems we really lack discipline and therefore speed in execution. I am getting to the point now where I am saying "form up in 30 (or 60) seconds and those who are not here will be removed from the platoon. We can get so much more done with less people who are listening and following along anyway. We don't need the extra dead weight dragging us down.
            "The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it." - George Bernard Shaw



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            • #7
              Re: Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

              I am open to trying it again, of course, but I think you are overlooking the key issue here.

              1) A triad becomes functional impossible or improbable (at best) under the conditions of a Biolab mass attack. In effect, you are asking the men do do something that cannot be done when attempted on such a large scale.

              The solution is not to repeat the tactic but to modify your approach.

              You are missing a key intermediate step. As you note "I see enemies doing this to great effect in pairs with Engis, but we can never seem to do this" (with noted exceptions as above) -- yet you are skipping over training in pairs and asking for triads while at the same time acknowledging the general lack of experience of two-member fireteams.

              So what I am suggesting is KISS. Keep it simple.

              Call for 4 Max/Eng pairs and 4 medics within squads.

              Now you have simplified the teamwork/comms/identity issue while at the same time keeping the optimal max/eng/medic ratio. This also simplifies the time-to-execution and the amount of explaining/comm traffic at your end.

              "Squad leaders, organize your men into 4 max/eng pairs with four medics. Gather at the whatever and wait for orders."
              Last edited by E-Male; 06-05-2013, 04:40 PM.
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              • #8
                Re: Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

                Yeah, I think I like that, an improvement structurally. Then also the Medics can sort of hang back and just move up to res when needed.

                It must be stressed however for the squads to stick together in the same general vicinty. Max teams can cover separate doors of a point room for instance, with the Medics in the relatively safe center. Maybe the SL should be one of the Medics in the center, as this would give the best vantage to watch the whole squad, stay relatively safe, and direct the movements of the squad most effectively. For instance "Max team 4, hold up a little in the front, while Max team 7 is getting rezzed up" (using the number of the Max in squad to designate the fireteam, like we do in air squads to identify individual aircraft).

                As always, practicing this under fire and getting everyone to move and communicate as one cohesive unit will be the challenge. But that we will practice by continuing to execute in the field, now that we are ironing the structure out on the forums.
                "The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it." - George Bernard Shaw



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                • #9
                  Re: Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

                  It just got way to hectic to keep up with your max when there were 15 all looking about the same. There was one giant blob of letters that you tried to pick out your max's name. The first rush was good as we were able to spread out of the spawn room, but after that, it was very hard to form back up. I ended up just jumping back into battle rezzing whoever I could. I do like E-Male's suggestion as it would be easier squad wise.

                  My autocorrect turned E-Male to female... haha

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                  • #10
                    Re: Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

                    Originally posted by Randy_Shughart_ClwFL View Post
                    It must be stressed however for the squads to stick together in the same general vicinty. Max teams can cover separate doors of a point room for instance, with the Medics in the relatively safe center. Maybe the SL should be one of the Medics in the center, as this would give the best vantage to watch the whole squad, stay relatively safe, and direct the movements of the squad most effectively.

                    Keeping squads together builds on existing unit strengths. Keeping squads together also takes advantage of the visual cue of the squad colour. This colour cue is a powerful organizing force.

                    I would dissuade you from ordering squad layouts to the point of assigning kits to specific roles/individuals. Leave those details to your squad leaders.
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                    • #11
                      Re: Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

                      While definitely an interesting approach (I was definitely impressed with how quickly people formed into 3 man groups in a group of pubbies!), I think the triad approach is a bit too brittle even during the initial wave. This is mainly because there's a weak link in the three man group: the medic. If he goes down and nobody is around to revive him, then either the MAX or the engi can go down and the triad is finished. Also, if the other two go down, the medic has to risk himself to pick them up, exposing the weakest link. The triad approach also encourages individual triads to split off and do their own thing (since they're a self contained unit which is sticking together), which makes it very difficult to properly support each other (picking up other medics, teaming up to heal MAXes that are getting focused, etc)

                      Just having a MAX/Engi/Medic blob in the desired proportions like E-male suggests would work great (every time I've seen or done something similar, it's pretty scary) but maybe a hybrid approach might work. Split the squad into two fireteams at those proportions, and now it's much less brittle. The second medic can pick up the other if he falls, and the engineers can split their attention and manage the MAXes health better. You also avoid one of the challenges of a blob, which is that you just can't easily get 4 MAXes through the same doorway at once. Two can get through easy, though, and with their supporting elements in tow that might make a pretty effective 6-man breaching team.

                      Sorry if that's a little disjointed, I'm a little tired atm.



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                      • #12
                        Re: Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

                        I have had success with keeping a squad together by issuing specific orders on approach such as "stack up on that wall to the north but don't go around the corner." Then once there we assign fire vectors. "Lead max on the corner hit what you can; heavy watch that door to our rear everyone stay close and don't get shot.". Prior to engagement I usually assign a lead MAX as point man and a wing Max to stay with him. Then it is just a matter of having the engineers and medics stay between the MAX units and the HA's. Obviously folks poke out and contribute the medics and engineers respond to threats from above or odd angles, The HA's respond to armored threats and the MAX units tend to just lay down the fire at whatever choke point they can find. The point is that there is a clear separation in the military between the LT squad leader and the Sgt. on point. The LT is not in the lead. The point man is. The LT just calls what cover we are bounding to next and keeps everyone together organizing fields of fire and calling priority targets.

                        I believe this is possible with 2 fire-teams in 1 squad. MAX MAX, Eng, Medic, HA, INF(or additional HA/Med/Eng). The important thing would be to emphasize that the squad as a whole has to move together under direction of the Lt. Even if you die as an LT you can call the next piece of cover to bound to on the map. The thing is that we have to use cover much better and control our movement much better. If we can do those things we should be much more effective. If we can get bounding and covering working in general we should be effective.

                        Everything is a system, Break it down.

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                        • #13
                          Re: Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

                          Knifewise correctly points out the the effectiveness to the 3 man fireteam is location assignment. As pointed out in this post:http://www.tacticalgamer.com/planets...max-crash.html.

                          I mentioned "Assign them a location on the spawn room and call them Fire Team 1, Fire Team 2, etc........ The locations should be such that the engy's and medics are in minimum danger of being killed. That gives you 8 fire teams to cover the spawn room and leaves the other 2 squads to cap the points and SCU. The MAX coverage on the spawn room gives you coverage on points A, B, SCU AND the transporter from below......... once capped the other 2 squads cover the transporters from the outpost in case they have been re-flipped. Once the base is captured then use the outpost transporters to flip back the outpost that have been flipped to hold the base."

                          In a academia world you would have the same people playing the game all the time and therefore those players would know their location and move to them effectively and efficiently, but we all know that every bio-lab doesn't play by the rules of academia. So assignments such as "Fireteam 1 take location on the back right corner of the spawn room", Fire team 2 take the back left corner", Fireteam 3 take the left corner of the spawn room as it faces the SCU"......etc are necessary. Going in with a herd of MAXs regardless of the configuration will always cause confusion with the support team. Assignments are heard by the fireteam and the engy and medic knows where "their" MAX is.

                          With a platoon, there would be 8 3-man fireteams who know their locations. If a medic goes down then there should be 2 additional squads who are capping the points of which there should be a medic in the bunch that can bring the fireteam medic back up. Since the MAXs are containing the enemy in the spawn room, movement shouldn't be a problem........but also what would need to be addressed would be this aspect of the MAX fireteam "The locations should be such that the engy's and medics are in minimum danger of being killed". The MAX being most forward is in the greatest danger, the engy is in danger but should be to a lesser degree, the medic will be in danger due to the action and invasion but should be in the least danger of the 3. Because they will occasionally go down and require help from a member of the remaining 2 squads, in my opinion isn't a reason to not work the plan.

                          Knifewise also points out: "The LT is not in the lead. The point man is"........which is why SL's should be communicating between each other and coordinating the action with regards to the objective. Top down micro managing rarely turns out well for the battle. The military understands that, Knifewise understands that, and I understand that.

                          To do something once and expect it to cookie cutter out with indisputable victory is only fooling ourselves or giving reason for nay-sayers to moan and groan............nothing ever works perfectly the first time. Albert Einstein said once "If we knew what it was we were doing, it would not be called research, would it?"
                          Last edited by Rageq3a; 06-08-2013, 03:44 PM.

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                          • #14
                            Re: Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

                            I would note only that the triad/fireteam organization has many other applications besides platoon scale bio lab max crashes. Even assuming this was a representative test, and I cannot know if it was (I was not there, have insufficient data), its effectiveness in this particular enviorment (biolab), to this strategy (max crash), with this scale (platoon) should not be taken as representative of the utility of the concept generally. Any or all of the three factors listed above can be changed to some effect.
                            The question foremost in my mind is "what will bring the most tactical fun to the server?"

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                            • #15
                              Re: Large Groups of Fireteams: Reflections

                              Originally posted by Garthra View Post
                              I would note only that the triad/fireteam organization has many other applications besides platoon scale bio lab max crashes. Even assuming this was a representative test, and I cannot know if it was (I was not there, have insufficient data), its effectiveness in this particular enviorment (biolab), to this strategy (max crash), with this scale (platoon) should not be taken as representative of the utility of the concept generally. Any or all of the three factors listed above can be changed to some effect.
                              Absolutely.

                              I will be working on "workshops" and training events in the use of fireteams (Alpha/Bravo 6/6 with SL in Bravo).

                              The Biolab is an instance, a fairly rare exception, where fireteams break down, but really only those fireteams that are not fully trained.

                              A squad with two fireteams can operate in any TG title. I have managed them in BF2, BC, BF3, PR. PoE, BF2142, and ArmA.

                              It is all about training.







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