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Urban Engagements May 10-11th, 2008

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  • Urban Engagements May 10-11th, 2008

    Howdy, all. I've gotten back into ArmA after a long lay off primarily due to the release of the 1.12 beta. The game finally seems to be where I wish it would have been a year ago.

    In any event, I'm pretty rusty. I've been playing primarily on Evolution servers as I get my feet under me again. This past Saturday evening, I noticed that one of the TG servers was running a mission I'd never seen before and there were about a dozen or so players on already. More joined as the evening progressed. I think we peaked at about 20 or so.

    When I joined, the assault on Masbete was already well under way. I chose to play as a sniper with the M107 as I'm still learning the weapon. A helo was just leaving as I joined and didn't return despite repeated requests for pickup. Comms in general were very chaotic. Everyone was on the 'side' channel with little to no apparent coordination. Under the circumstances, I figured I was best off lone wolfing it for a while until I got a feel for the mission and the gameplay.

    Rather than wait for a lift that might never come, I decided to head for Masbete on foot. Besides, I also figured that a 4 km walk over hill and dale while enjoying the view sounded like just the kind of thing to start my evening. :)

    The good news is that we had a couple of pilots flying transport. The bad news is that they weren't very good. ;) The assault on Masbete was finally successful despite the very heavy Shilka fire from east of town (leading to multiple heli crashes with no survivors). By the time I got there the town had been cleared. A guy whose tag was B decided he'd had enough of the very rough play and asked if anyone minded if he took over as platoon leader.

    With no voiced objections, he immediately established a new communications discipline. Everyone except himself to use only direct or vehicle channels. No side, group, or global. (Maybe the mission doesn't support group? If not, it should.)

    In any event, the immediate result was that he could finally begin to get some coordination. Over the course of the evening, a handful of players stepped forward to act as squad and fireteam leaders. They continued to use the side channel while B swiftly squashed anyone else trying to do so.

    B organized a two pronged assault on Ixel to retrieve the two Abrams; one on the heights to the NE (helo assault landing that went badly awry) and one south along the main road from Masbete. I had been maintaining radio silence since I had left our base. Given my position, I decided to work along the ridge ahead of the second group to scout for enemy contact.

    We cleared Ixel, took the tanks and headed back up the road for Pita. I still chose to operate lone wolf and worked across country to get my scope on Pita proper.

    Fog rolled in at one point, forcing me to play cat and mouse with a Shilka and two BMPs. I managed to avoid contact and kept working my way to Pita. B was aggressively pushing the assault through the red zone to town. Once in position, I started reporting enemy positions and taking out EI until I was killed.

    At one point during this time, I spotted a manned heli on the tarmac. I took out the pilot and door gunner. I then saw a whole squad of SpecOps disembark. I started picking them off and they conveniently froze in position to just sit on the runway. Made for some nice, long distance target practice. :)

    After I respawned, I jumped on a UH60 piloted by Ghostsniper headed to Pita to pick up the successful assault infantry. It turned out the guy next to me in the chopper, Black Hayato, had decided to play as a sniper too. Through unspoken agreement, we decided to form a scout/sniper team.

    Actually, when I look back on it I think Hayato was a very inexperienced sniper. I think he decided he was best served by tagging along with me. I ended up as lead of our two man element as he was willing to just go where I pointed. Amazing how that works sometimes. ;)

    After the chopper dropped off the assault team led by Sgt ? (sorry, I've forgotten his name) along the west road to Benomo, I requested that Ghostsniper drop Hayato and I on a hilltop SW of their position so we could watch the road for the assault team.

    Ghostsniper was clearly an inexperienced, if willing, transport pilot. He had a heck of a time figuring out which hilltop I was referring to, even after we marked the LZ for him. Still, he did his best to get us into position. He nearly cracked up on landing. Although the chopper was damaged he managed to RTB to get it repaired OK.

    Meanwhile, B, the remaining Abrams (one had been badly damaged during the assault on Pita), and the rest of the infantry were following Sgt ? up the road.

    Hayato and I reported in as a scout team. We informed B and Sgt ? that we had eyes on Benomo and had no movement. I asked B what his plans were: Was he going to bypass the red zone for an assault on Bagango, or was he going to clear it? He decided to clear it. He requested that we infiltrate and keep an eye out for the three Shilkas that he said would be found in the red zone.

    That put us in a bit of a pickle. We were too far south to see much of the red zone, and the intervening ridgeline screened the road that he was planning to take. I decided that our best bet was to head for a red and white radio tower that I could see that was on Hill 151 ENE of Bagango.

    Hayato and I started hoofing it across country. He and I were on direct comms and listening to B, Sgt ?, and a couple of guys who were beginning to step up to the roles of fireteam leaders under B and Sgt ?.

    Hayato and I reached the radio tower without incident well before the assault team had started south to Bagango. I climbed up and reported in. Hayato took a look at the small platform and decided to stay below and cover me from there.

    We had a commanding view of Bagango and its approaches. I started marking armor and infantry for B. He was still asking us to prioritize Shilka sightings when I spotted one accompanied by 2 BMPs headed up to the peak south of Passo San Marcos. I reported it several times before he figured out what I was location I was referring to. Once he did understand, he found something to take it out although I'm not sure what. All I know is that shortly after I reported its position, it had become a smoking wreck. :)

    After that, Hayato and I engaged the EI from where we were, still marking armor when we could see it. Things got kind of busy for a while at one point with a half squad or two of EI deciding we were a greater threat than the main assault. Hayato had to take out one machinegunner at nearly point blank range.

    From the radio chatter, it was pretty clear that the assault coming in from the north and east had encountered very heavy going. By the time that B's and Sgt ?'s assault teams had managed to reach the outskirts of Bagango, Hayato and I had killed most of the EI in Bagango proper. Unfortunately, our remaining Abrams was also out of action and we had yet to initiate contact south of Bagango.

    Bagango was reported cleared shortly thereafter. I climbed down so Hayato and I could talk things over. I thought our best bet was to stay on the ridge paralleling the main road south out of Bagango, past Obregon, then work our way down to Hill 101 east of Corazol. However, we were on the wrong side of Bagango and after a bit it was clear to both of us we were hopelessly behind and out of position to execute that plan.

    I contacted B and asked him to detail a chopper to pick us up and put us down near the peak SE of Obregon. I figured that was our best bet to give cover and report enemy positions.

    By this time I think we had 3 chopper pilots. B asked for volunteers to come get us but no one stepped forward. He stressed that he thought that our help had been invaluable in the approach to and assault on Bagango. He wanted us in position to continue our observation work. After several repeated requests, Ghostsniper offered to come get us.

    Unfortunately, Ghostsniper's inexperience caused him to make a fatal error in his approach. He crashed the chopper on his first attempt. He got us picked up OK on the second try, though.

    Again, Ghostsniper struggled to find the LZ we marked for him for our drop off. Eventually, he figured out which marker was ours (what's so tough about "Sniper Team Destination" to understand?) and dropped us off relatively close to where we wanted to be.

    We reached a point on the hill where we could see Obregon and the road south of town. We had almost no movement in sight except for a UAZ with a mounted MG. We reported this contact to B.

    Unfortunately, shortly after Hayato and I reached our observation point the server started desyncing badly. After a while, it got so bad that Hayato and I could only hear each other sporadically. We had no contact with anyone else.

    I decided our best bet was to work our way along the ridge toward Corazol where we could see a small fort on the hill north of town. When we got close enough, I could see that someone else had already been working it over. There was only one EI left alive on the SE side of the base; a sniper that we could only see from the chest up.

    Shortly after this point, the server synced up again. I took the opportunity to take a shot at the E sniper. I dropped him after four or five rounds at 1,000 yards or so. Not great, I know. What can I say? At least I took him out. :)

    We also spotted a crashed UH60 on the road near the stationary truck. Yup, Ghostsniper again. We provided some cover fire for him although I'm not sure how effective we were because the server started desyncing again as we opened up. I think Ghostsniper got a couple close range kills, though.

    Further inspection of the hill fort showed that there were several EI on the north slope. By this time, I was down to just a couple of magazines while Hayato had 3 or 4. I decided that we could do the team the most good by working our way over to the hill fort. From there, we could decide what to do next.

    Unfortunately, about the same time the server started desyncing yet again. BADLY! I finally decided to drop off when someone said, "Thank God that mission is over" and I could still see an EI who had been running in place for about 15 minutes.

    All in all, a fun mission. Good teamwork was exhibited by some fairly inexperienced players stiffened by what looked like a handful of TG regulars. Too bad the either the mission or the server couldn't handle the load late in the mission.

    I look forward to playing it again! :D

  • #2
    Re: Urban Engagements May 10-11th, 2008

    lol... the assault on Pita and the coastal defences outside of Pita were good... After the pick up from Pita outside of Bagango and inside of Bagango also went very well...

    There was this one moment when there were about 20+ guys together waiting for Ghost's reinforcement drop... That was pretty epic. Pita and Bagango fell very fast since we had tank support and 20+ infantries attacking it at the same time.

    All in all it was very good game. Just outside of Corazol it always desyncs. I don't play that much but I have only seen that mission go that far in only twice and on both occasions it desyncs beyond playability.

    It is a great mission, with several strategic objectives one after another. May be if we clear the closest red zones first and work our way from there even if we do not have to... the server load will be minimized.

    Anyway Sgt.Moody is his tag. He was a big help to me. I could issue the general orders and he would issue the detailed instructions... Made sure everybody was concentrated on the same task. Big thanks to Ghost because he was the only pilot who was doing the heaviest transport work while others fooled around, did not understand the orders, or just hover over the main assault for show of force so to say. Also Rock's sniper team also helped a lot. We always knew what kind of force we are facing where.

    Hope we can get in more games like that.


    • #3
      Re: Urban Engagements May 10-11th, 2008

      Yep, an inexperienced, clumsy, pilot focussed on doing the right thing for the team beats a couple of hot dogs every time, no matter how good they are!

      Thx for the compliment, too. Glad we could be of service. I love playing as scout/sniper when I'm working as part of a larger team. I hope I got Hayato started off with the right idea as to what the sniper's job should be.

      I noticed in the maplist maintained in the Tech Support forum that Urban Entanglements is still considered to be in a test phase. Do you know if anyone from TG has contacted the mission author to report the problems that we are seeing with it?

      Finally, what did take out that Shilka? Did you have someone nail it with a Javelin?




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