Announcement

Collapse
No announcement yet.

Mental state of a Squad Leader

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Mental state of a Squad Leader

    I can't do it, because of the pressure and I'm so concentrated on just trying to shoot you. How do those of you that SL regularly deal with:

    1. The pressure, as I perceive it, to always have an objective and an alternative while shooting things.
    2. Balancing the need for an effective squad member (tactically) with being an squad leader (strategic).

    Do you have a specific leadership style that you find yourself following?

    I've been in squads where the SL hangs back and has overwatch as well as ones where the SL is racking up kills and flags faster than his/her squad can keep up. Both work great depending on what the situation is, so I've got no specific preference.

    Maybe I'm just better off a grunt. I've never been able to do it effectively since BF2.

  • #2
    Re: Mental state of a Squad Leader

    Picking and defending a position is a great way to build confidence. It reduces the area you have to worry about and gives you fewer variables to consider when calling targets, contacts, getting used to redirecting your squad and learning player interactions.

    As you begin to see these interactions you can start to build on them by thinking in terms of how the battle is playing out:

    Did that LAV that just attack your position come from a flag close by?
    How many infantry did your squad repel? If you are still being engaged did your team not clear the area well enough?
    Are you getting ones and twos of enemy infantry or squads supported by over-watch?
    Did they take you by surprise for an area you don't have covered well?

    This is they way I operate my squads particularly if I have a mix of players I havn't really played with. You don't always have to be attacking, and generally being able to hold a position against a superior force is a great confidence builder that will get you ready for mobile tactics and movement to different objectives.
    sigpic

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Mental state of a Squad Leader

      I like to make sure that my squad mates have different perks and just making sure i have an objective marked, that way i dont have to call out what flag to go to.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Mental state of a Squad Leader

        Being comfy as an effective SL is a matter of experience, the more you do it the better you will be. SLing is second nature to me simply because I've spent +1,000 hours as an SL in BF2142. Not saying that you need tons of hours get better but you do need to put time in if you want to improve.

        As for objectives, when you are starting out, keep it simple. If you have bleed pick the most obvious flag the enemy is going to attack and get your squad there to defend. If you are down on bleed look at your map and see if your team is getting bleed back somewhere or decide if you can move your squad to get bleed back (either to an undefended flag or assisting another squad capturing a flag).

        Once you have an objective just focus on getting your squad into a nice spot and then shoot it up. If you are worried about your shooting you can always step down a few rounds a focus on that while someone else SLs and you find a rhythm to your shooting and aiming.

        As for style, you have to find your own but feel free to pick someone's style you like and see how it works for you. I know I have to lead from the front and in the thick of the fight but that comes from my ability to win 1v1s at a decent rate. Email would be my opposite and he loves to guide his squad in from the rear and lay down some covering fire. Style is just a preference and it takes time to find what you feel best with.
        Reapator, overlord of ponies

        Comment


        • #5
          Re: Mental state of a Squad Leader

          I do it sometimes, but I'm always SL on maps I hate.


          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Mental state of a Squad Leader

            When I SL, I tend use a round or two to see what the abilities of those in my squad are. There's a groove that a good squad can get into. Depending on performance, I tend to be hands off on my squad. Only giving "orders" when we need to focus somewhere else, or if something is not working. SLing is also a matter of timing, getting to know your Op area enough to know if they are capping a flag, how long it will take and how soon you will see them in your area. This also has an effect on assaulting flags as well. If they just capped it and are low on flags, you can be pretty sure that most of the team will have spawned in if you rush there. Take a pause before rushing in because, the enemy has a tendency to rush off to some other flag. Let them go, then once they have thinned out, punch them hard and cap the flag.
            sigpic




            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Mental state of a Squad Leader

              CoiledTortoise,

              First of all, do not give up. Squad leading does put the pressure on you and takes time to learn. Once you get past the pressure squad leading can be one of the most rewarding experiences of online gaming.

              I suggest that you start squad leading from the rear (a rather awkward expression, that one). This position gives you the best oversight of your squad's position relative to enemy positions and will reduce the number of times you get killed. Less time dying = more time leading, better situation awareness, and your squad will be more focused on the enemy and less distracted from having to revive you.

              Don't worry too much about not being in the centre of the fight. A cohesive squad withe a higher level of coordination and situation awareness will make up for a SL who is focused on leading.

              Once you get accustomed to squad leading then you can lead from the front and speed up you own level of engagement if you wish.

              Also, split your 3 men into two teams: Alpha (two men) and Bravo (yourself and your Bravo1 man). Now you can move these teams about instead of worrying about 3 men. "Alpha flank right" is much easy to conceptualize and execute than, "Biff and Chad, no Jeb, flank right."

              sigpic

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Mental state of a Squad Leader

                Thank you all for your responses so far and your insight. Have any of you thought about having practical training sessions for making the transition to SL?

                I like the fact that everyone has a different style and that you all see value in those styles regardless of personal preference. I think Blugill and ReaperAssault's suggestions to keep it simple while not being worried about hanging back as E-male suggested is a good combination to start with. The 4 man squad makes such a difference to how I perceive squad effectiveness in comparison to BF2 & BF2142. The effect of hanging back is much more pronounced in BF3, but still effective as several SLs have shown.

                As for strategy, I'll just have to try not to get overwhelmed. I know it's better to just make a decision than to over-analyse a complex situation in fear of making a bad one.

                Thanks again all.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Mental state of a Squad Leader

                  Also keep in mind that most people are glad to have someone else lead and grateful to have someone else make the decisions. Everyone is having too much fun to be judgmental.
                  sigpic

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Mental state of a Squad Leader

                    SL style depends largely upon your play style. I love to be in the center of the action, not always taking point, but still relying heavily on my shooting skills as well as leadership SL ability to get the job done. Ultimately, your SL style should (and will) reflect how you play the game. Playing as SL is a balancing act: you weigh and juggle a variety of skills, to the extent that you use them is up to you.

                    I would recommend you lead from the middle to start off with. And by that, I mean not taking point, nor hanging around too much on the rear. You'll fight, but still have the out-of-combat clarity to make the decisions that you must practice as SL. Eventually as you will progress, you will gravitate and learn what works best for you. It may be front or rear, or it might be a situation-based hybrid of the two. No matter, it just needs to work for you.

                    As far and orders and such, all you are doing is directing your squad where you think you can be most effective and provide the biggest boost to the team that you can. Of course, this skill unfolds with time and continues to get better and better the more you do it. So, do it! Take an SL spot, and do the best you can. Be open to suggestions; SLs are players, they miss things, and the three additional minds of your squad will help you sure up your own decisions.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Mental state of a Squad Leader

                      Dr. Beat rightly notes a third way -- in the middle.

                      All three modes of leading work. I use each of them as the situation warrants or the mood strikes, although I do favour the practice of Alpha forward with Bravo providing suppression/support/flanking quite a lot.

                      Something else to keep in mind:

                      Squad leading will burn you out. I am effective only after one trial round (a warm up) and then good for about three rounds at the most. After that my effectiveness drops steadily.

                      Just finished a great set of three rounds tonight on a TG infantry-only server -- lost two (but they were close!) won one.

                      Noticed another pattern: when playing with people new to me I explain what I need from them (some basic standard operating procedures). They quickly get it and squad cohesion rises quickly. Keep it simple and keep it concise and clear. As Dr. Beat says, also leave room for your men to take the initiative. I keep my men on a short lease but love to hear suggestions and see innovation. Others will simply let their men go with minimal direction, which can also work.

                      It is fascinating and rewarding to see players 'get' what you are trying to do, fall in line, and appreciate your effort.

                      How you lead also depends on who you lead.

                      Squad leading is an endlessly stimulating intellectual exercise.

                      Plus you get to meet new friends and TK them.

                      As to training, group up with me anytime (or any member of the 1stMIP) and ask for some, or fall in with any of the TG SL regulars and watch and listen. Mostly listen!

                      E-Male
                      sigpic

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Mental state of a Squad Leader

                        I agree with Beat and E-male, shadow those SL's that seem to work best in your eyes. See what they do well and find ways to improve, or give it your personal touch. Don't be afraid to ask and make mistakes, both are some best learning tools we have.
                        sigpic




                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Mental state of a Squad Leader

                          Note: There is a good chance TGU will have a squad leader course up and running for this game at some point in the future. :) But you didn't hear that from me...

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Mental state of a Squad Leader

                            Great advice all. I'm hoping there are others who are equally as willing but hesitant as I am and that they'll find this thread useful.

                            Originally posted by Arithea View Post
                            Note: There is a good chance TGU will have a squad leader course up and running for this game at some point in the future. :) But you didn't hear that from me...
                            Totally anonymous tip acknowledged.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Mental state of a Squad Leader

                              Leadership comes in multiple flavors.
                              1. Lead by Example
                              2. Lead by Involvement
                              3. Lead by Direction

                              Lead by example is the easiest to understand. You do something that you expect those that follow you to do. In these cases it's the commander that leads the charge or the squad. Very popular in war movies and 19th century combat. It either inspires your men to greater valor or ensures that the command gets killed first. Normally not the best way to lead men but last ditch efforts might require that charge. However it also doesn't mean you need to be charging into things. This play style is simply a lead from the front lines types of style. You expose yourself to danger but you also see what's coming up first and can make decisions quicker. You rely on your Medic to rez you.

                              Lead by involvement is what Dr.Beat up there mentioned. It's being mixed up in the middle of it all. Knowing what each person's job is and what they are doing in that position. You take the middle point being at the center and other squad members flank, move ahead, cover the rear and every time they come back to the middle point. It's important in this type of movement to move as a group. The SL has to keep an eye on all directions in this case but also is in support range to all soldiers.

                              Lead by direction is what I see Emale doing in his videos quite a bit. It's the over watch position. You survey the land, see what the best approach is and your squad moves up in either a spread or line pattern. The SL's job in this case is to redirect as needed, offer support fire or cover an exit lane. This type of leadership rely heavily on Squad communication and accurate depiction of the battlefield. The SL may not in a position to see what's going on depending on their elevation and environment.

                              Personally I use all three types of leadership styles depending on the situation. Back when I played PR a lot I used the middle one. Leadership by Involvement. I found it to be the most effective in that game. However in BF3, especially with pubbers, I find myself using the first one, Leadership by Example. Since I often to do something first in order for those members in my squad to catch a clue as to what I'm doing. The lack of VOIP in game makes that necessary. Though on TG servers the choice is flexible thanks to higher possibility of your squad mates being on TS. About the only time I use the third one, Lead by Direction, is when I am specifically looking over an area and maintaining myself as a spawn point because I know there is a high potential of being overwhelmed or ambushed by the enemy. I commonly use this strategy if my squad are well behind enemy lines.

                              On the subject of what to do, that is also situational.

                              I think the best and easiest decision on that is, what point is the enemy attacking and what secondary point is the enemy attacking? Either support the main defensive and counter attack from a flank or defend the secondary enemy objective and maintain while the main attack is hopefully stopped. Keep your zone of influence small. Don't be running all over the map unless the front is moving that quickly. Even then stay just behind the front.
                              .
                              "Young gamers assault while Older gamers flank."
                              "When fascism comes to America it will be wrapped in the flag and carrying a cross." - Sinclair Lewis

                              Comment

                              Connect

                              Collapse

                              TeamSpeak 3 Server

                              Collapse

                              Advertisement

                              Collapse

                              Twitter Feed

                              Collapse

                              Working...
                              X