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AAR Black Falcon 23MAY

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  • AAR Black Falcon 23MAY

    Or how assumptions can screw you on TG.

    PL: Me
    SF TL: Bigvalco
    UH60 Pilot: Lowspeedhighdrag
    Mech Infantry SL: Mosley
    MH-6 pilot: Lewis

    I took platoon lead for this one based on my previous playthrough. My basic plan was fairly simple: Special Forces would perform an air assault on the target area and make the actual takedown. The mechs, being armored 25mm deathdealers from Hell itself, would drive up the MSR to provide extraction of the package (Queen of Hearts), in addition to providing a reserve in case SF couldn't affect the takedown.

    I intended for the SF team leader to take operational control of all the helos, although I don't believe this point was communicated at all well by me (my bad). And I violated my own "no micromanagement" policy by stating my specific intent for the Little Bird was to recon the target area. These two things led to some initial confusion on the helo/SF side of the house. My fault for not being clearer about my intent.

    On the ground side, things went better, they got loaded up, moved with a purpose, held short about 500m from the target area (to prevent tipping off a response from the Republican Guard camp) and other than completely securing the hold short point, I had no issue with them. I'd figured the dismount elements, well, uh... dismounted to provide security, but for some reason they hadn't.

    Where things began to unravel was with the SAMs. I tasked the Apache with taking them out and promptly put it out of my mind, figuring that it was a done deal with Hellfires. ASS U ME. A few minutes later MH6 has reported heavy fire taken from target area, HMGs abound on rooftops and bad guys all over. Not concerned, the Apache can take care of most of that after the SAMs. Of course, I'd jinxed myself just by thinking that and the very next radio message was the Apache pilot reporting they'd been hit bad and were going down.

    Not a game breaker by any stretch, I cleared the SF team proceed on their helo insertion to the target area. Here is where another assumption came to bite me in the ass. I'd expected the SF guys to choose their own DZ (I seriously don't like micromanaging), but one keeping with my intent of landing them close to the target area and quickly executing the takedown. Instead they landed a full 500m away, as far from the target area as the mech infantry.

    As a background to all this, the hold short point for the mech infantry was taking sporadic small arms and RPG fire and my Humvee occassionally caught a piece, which did wonders for my command ability. Not.

    At that point, I realized that SF weren't exactly going to be able cover the distance and even if they could, they'd face a pretty stiff fight at the target area. Probably too much for 6 guys with nothing bigger than M4s and harsh language. So I ordered the mech infantry to proceed to the target area, intending to have them execute the takedown with SF in a supporting (if any) role. No grandiose tactics, just plain kick the walls down and if the neighbors complain about the noise, turn it up to 11 with a TOW.

    That lasted approximately 150m before one of the Brads hit a OMFGWTFHFSROFL-sized IED. The blast was so big it filled my Humvee windshield (100m away) with a huge mushroom cloud of dust and blew up the other Brad which was a full 20m away, in addition to wiping out Charlie squad.

    My cunning plan blow to pieces, I just kind of sat there for about two minutes, trying to get comms back up with Charlie, hoping against hope that the squad had still been dismounted. They weren't, which made me a sad panda. I looked at what I had and what needed to be done and made the call that it'd be an SF takedown/air extraction. SF called for a medic, whch I conviently had on hand. I mounted up my medic and two survivors of Charlie who'd come from out of the woodwork and began rolling. I looked at the map to ascertain SF's location, while driving, assuming that the MSR only had one Xbox heug IED on it. I dropped the map and kept driving, when my screen froze, my frames dropped to about 0.25FPS, and I heard the sound of multiple explosions (or one explosion looped due to lag).

    Sure enough, dead as fried chicken.

    I don't believe the Blackhawk or SF team knew WTF had happened to me as they continued advancing until pinned down by hostile fire, continuously taking casualties until finally attrited in front of a big poster of Saddam. The admin, flying unscathed in the Blackhawk finally realized we'd been wiped out and ended the mission.

    Lessons learned?
    1) Communicate your intent clearly. Instead of giving directions that are understandable, give directions they can't misunderstand.

    2) Bradleys, armored in real life, not really so much in ArmA with huge IEDs.

    3) IEDs- if you find one, there's probably another.

    4) Real life isn't ArmA. Don't carry assumptions from one into the other.

  • #2
    Re: AAR Black Falcon 23MAY

    Good AAR and fun.
    Well posted.

    TGU Instructor TG Pathfinder

    Former TGU Dean Former ARMA Admin Former Irregulars Officer

    "Do not seek death. Death will find you. But seek the road which makes death a fulfillment." - Dag Hammarskjold

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    • #3
      Re: AAR Black Falcon 23MAY

      Well written AAR! Love 'em when they bring something to learn :)



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      • #4
        Re: AAR Black Falcon 23MAY

        Originally posted by Apocal View Post
        4) Real life isn't ArmA. Don't carry assumptions from one into the other.
        Verry true but many tactics and procedures from RL do work in ArmA. The vehicle damage system is fubar in this game imo, hopefully in ArmA II it will better. Basics on splitting or not splitting your forces, how to assault a position and the like do transfer over. Not flawlessly but they can be incorporated with only minor adjustments.
        |TG-Irr|LCpl. Soto
        TGULT-Roel Yento

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        • #5
          Re: AAR Black Falcon 23MAY

          Nice AAR a nice little read and the apache going down seems to happen to me alot as well when i command, i also don't like micro management either but i tend to drift into a bit of it now and again if i think they're micro plan is a bit fubar.
          Gregos also known as Sir Jones

          "War can only be abolished through war, and in order to get rid of the gun it is necessary to take up the gun." - Mao Zedong

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          • #6
            Re: AAR Black Falcon 23MAY

            Things like telling a squad what avenue of approach to take, what road to travel down, what LZ to use, or from where to attack from is the PL's job and isn't micromanaging. Micromanaging is leading them through the movements, telling them how to move down the road, telling them how to dismount at the LZ, and telling them how to attack from the direction you want them to attack from. Leaving things up to the squads to decide on their own is basically making them lead the Plt. You need to give them focus and direction so that they understand the plan, not have to make a plan their selves. Granted you can complete a mission with no direction and leaving it up to the squads to decide on things but they will probably end up functioning as individual squads and not as a platoon would and thus you will probably suffer more unneccesary casualties.
            |TG-Irr|LCpl. Soto
            TGULT-Roel Yento

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: AAR Black Falcon 23MAY

              Sorry about the delay, been busy with other stuff lately.

              Originally posted by LowSpeedHighDrag View Post
              Good AAR and fun.
              Well posted.
              Originally posted by Inkompetent View Post
              Well written AAR! Love 'em when they bring something to learn :)
              Thank you.

              Originally posted by LCpl. Soto View Post
              Verry true but many tactics and procedures from RL do work in ArmA. The vehicle damage system is fubar in this game imo, hopefully in ArmA II it will better. Basics on splitting or not splitting your forces, how to assault a position and the like do transfer over. Not flawlessly but they can be incorporated with only minor adjustments.
              Oh I'm not saying that basic tactics don't transfer. They certainly do. It's just the context behind them gets mixed up. In this case, the MSR seemed more attractive than the alternative (narrow sidestreets) because I'd discounted the effectiveness of IEDs vs. armor in ArmA. Real-life, you can roll a Brad through most IEDs like they are speed bumps. It's not recommended, there is some risk involved, but overall it's a better idea than rolling down a sidestreet that you can't turn around in or even move your barrel.

              ...except the assuming there was only one (1) IED on the road. That was just stupid of me.

              Originally posted by Gregos View Post
              Nice AAR a nice little read and the apache going down seems to happen to me alot as well when i command,
              As much as I might enjoy them, missions involving helicopters without much of a counterthreat are very much to blame for this. A lot of the helo guys, the guys that fly consistently, have gotten into the habit of using stationary, hovering attack-by-fire, regardless of the nature of the threat. You can get away with it in Evolution/Domination because once the Shilkas are down, you've got a free hand to pick out targets and destroy them at your leisure and hovering attack-by-fire is the kind of thing that works until it doesn't. In this case the SAMs had longer effective range.

              i also don't like micro management either but i tend to drift into a bit of it now and again if i think they're micro plan is a bit fubar.


              Originally posted by LCpl. Soto View Post
              Things like telling a squad what avenue of approach to take, what road to travel down, what LZ to use, or from where to attack from is the PL's job and isn't micromanaging. Micromanaging is leading them through the movements, telling them how to move down the road, telling them how to dismount at the LZ, and telling them how to attack from the direction you want them to attack from. Leaving things up to the squads to decide on their own is basically making them lead the Plt. You need to give them focus and direction so that they understand the plan, not have to make a plan their selves. Granted you can complete a mission with no direction and leaving it up to the squads to decide on things but they will probably end up functioning as individual squads and not as a platoon would and thus you will probably suffer more unneccesary casualties.
              On one hand, I want to say that the reason I gave them (SOF) so much leeway is because I was going in with the mechanized squad and (according to the plan) I wouldn't be getting eyes on the target area until the takedown. And we didn't have intel prior regarding the target area so any LZ I plopped down in the briefing stage was very much subject to change. Ideally I would have been with the SOF team (being the main effort and all) but I judged, correctly, that they'd be in contact the whole time and putting yourself into the realm of front sight focus as a PL is just bad juju.

              On the other hand, I've never played with Bigvalco as team leader before so you're probably right that stricter guidance was necessary.

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