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What I learned on Squad Saturday [25 Jan 2014]

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  • [AAR] What I learned on Squad Saturday [25 Jan 2014]

    A bunch of us congregated online last night and got a good few hours in. We had Yink, Ramna, ty ty, Xorilliz, TheRandomOne, Pieman and a couple of others dropped in and out. We played a combination of Resistance and Enemy Assault. I was nominated as squad leader (or fire team leader as we only had four or five people at times). This was a little bit daunting but I have wanted to try leading so it was good to give it a go. We had an interesting time - we couldn't seem to get the objectives to complete in resistance so spent a lot of time running around looking for HVTs or mortars. I'm not sure if this was because of a bug in the new update or just unlucky. Certainly Diary Ep1 seems to have broken with the update.

    When we changed missions to Enemy Assault I spent a LOT of time dying. In fact its probably the second most time I've spent dying in any multiplayer Arma session ever. I died 6 or 7 times and as our medic dropped out quite early on this meant up to half an hour waiting to respawn. This became quite frustrating, but gave me a lot of time for reflection... I've compiled a quick list of the things that I think I learned and can hopefully use to do better next time (assuming there is a next time!) :)

    1) Try not to die: whist our squad was experienced enough to carry on without a leader, spending half an hour waiting for respawn and more time halo-ing in meant that as a leader in the second mission I was basically ineffective. The other squad members were doing a great job of taking out the enemy so I should have been doing a better job of keeping my head down and directing their efforts.

    2) Bring AA (or "Helicopter insertions, why do you hate us?"): In the second round we decided to insert via helicopter as it was a long way to the objective. Just as we were about to land we spotted an enemy gunship. I made the call to land and scatter rather than abort and risk AA fire from the chopper. This left us very vulnerable and our helo was taken out quickly, followed by our squad members one by one. Eventually Xor was able to take out the helicopter with some AA he produced from who knows where. Perhaps we should have just aborted the landing, but once we landed I wish somebody (probably the engineer) had been carrying an AA weapon with one or two rockets on their back.

    3) Prep AT: Several times in both missions we used laser guided munitions to take out vehicles. The first time the UAV successfully took out the target, but then a second vehicle popped up and took a bunch of us out. The second time the LGB missed a tank and it slipped away. We would have had more success in both cases if we prepped AT and had it on standby before ordering the CAS.

    4) Pick a safe LZ and make the chopper wait outside the AO: Once we had completed our mission in enemy assault we legged it out of town with the hostage in tow and picked an LZ about 500m away. We got aboard without taking fire but just as we took off we got hit by a missile and all died horribly. I have no idea where the vehicle was or why it shot us with AA but not when we were running on the ground, but nevertheless... Next time I should pick an LZ further away and behind hard cover, then get the squad to secure the LZ whilst the chopper circles safely outside the AO. Only once the LZ is secure should I call the chopper in.

    Some of these are probably obvious but these are the key mistakes I think I made. I really enjoyed my turn at the helm and it was a completely different ARMA experience. Hopefully I didn't make too much of a mess of it and get the chance again! I tried to be slow and methodical for the most part, although I'm not sure if it felt that way to others.

    I've got a video of our failed helicopter insertion which I will upload at some point.



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