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  • [Alpha] Team Commander/Squad Organization

    Before organizing squads, I'd like some input from all of you as to what you're expecting. Do we want me to act as a commander for the scrim itself, or would we rather go without a commander and leave it up to the squad leaders? If we want a commander, do we want that person to stay out of combat a la 2142? The answers to these questions will determine how the team is organized going forward.
    A non-combative commander
    A fighting commander
    No commander

    The poll is expired.

  • #2
    Re: Team Commander/Squad Organization

    IMHO, I think the commander should just be our most competent/experienced squad leader. I think the lack of commander-specific features means that the commander can lead both his/her squad and the rest of the team, but the commander will have to keep him/herself situationally aware of the entire map (instead of just his team) throughout the round.
    He was told that he should not kill, and he did not kill, until he got into the Army. Then he was told to kill, and he killed.


    • #3
      Re: Team Commander/Squad Organization

      I think it almost goes without saying that having a commander, of whatever type, will be essential to successfully waging this battle. But, as Merc pointed out already, we'll all be hampered by the woeful lack of commander C&C features in BF3. To work around these limitations, I propose a course of action more or less along these lines:
      1. The commander will devote all his/her time to commanding, staying in constant contact with the squad leaders via the command net.
      2. To keep an overview of the battle, the commander could use some kind of tabletop map of Wake Island, and use chits or tokens to keep track of friendly and enemy positions (Fighter Command style -- it surely worked for them back then, didn't it?).
      3. A MAV might be a useful tool for the commander, in lieu of a satellite scan (but, good luck keeping it alive!).
      4. We need to come up with a naming system that accurately, unambiguously and concisely defines all the significant locations and features on the map. We can't afford to waste valuable comms time on exchanges like: "there's a squad near that palm tree next to that hill behind that building near B, moving from left beach to the other beach, bla bla bla..." Instead, let's name these features and make sure the commander, squad leaders, and squad members memorize them in advance (as far as possible). Let's make clear especially how to differentiate between the inner and outer beaches on the island... "Left" and "right" ain't going to cut it when we have squads moving about in all directions on the compass.
      5. With all the above in place, C&C between commander and SLs can consist of short, concise sitreps and orders, basically announcing where we are, where they are, and where we need to go. You all know the drill.
      To avoid duplicating efforts, I think that the "map naming convention," if we agree to go that route, should be established in cooperation with team Bravo -- they'll most surely need something similar as well, and it would be a waste to create two separate designs.

      That's all I can think of at the moment. I'm looking forward to your reactions and comments. :)
      <insert signature spam here>


      • #4
        Re: Team Commander/Squad Organization

        I think it should be best left up to the squad leaders... and we'll probably need every "gun" we have.

        The issue in Battlefield 3 is that there are no assets for the commander, so he/she is essentially blind short of what the Squad Leaders report and the spotting on the mini-map. The game is just too fast paced to sit back and try and figure out what's going on unless you are thick in the middle of it. If we want a Squad Leader that "has the last word" in having the authority of the Commander, I think that would be the best idea.

        We should certainly assign various squads general orders ahead of time (defend this flag, this area) as well as a reactionary squad that can help either attack or defend the various flags.

        |TG-88th| DaddyOfThree


        • #5
          Re: Team Commander/Squad Organization

          DoT, thanks for your comments! Until I'm proven wrong by a higher being, majority vote, or invading extraterrestrials, I think I'm going to respectfully disagree with some of your assertions. Let me explain why.

          In my opinion, the primary reason this game can feel so fast-paced and, dare I say, chaotic, is the very lack of a commander to slow things down, keep a cool head, and coordinate the actions of the team's constitute components. Without such a leader to guide the flock, the teamplay is prone to devolve into a running-around-like-headless-checkens-mode. These are intelligent chickens, mind you, but still: without a cranial force to direct their efforts, much of these actions can go to waste. The commander's main role is to channel that energy and shape us into an army that's both effective and efficient.

          With that in mind, I think the main reason against having a combined SL/commander role are the practical limits related to scope of control. Think about it: this person is supposed to direct his/her three squad members, maintain tactical situational awareness (to keep the squad alive and achieve its assigned objectives), whilst simultaneously keep a mental picture of the disposition of seven other squads, the perceived intentions of the enemy, as well as the strategic goals of our own team. In other words: this person has to communicate with ten different people, on two separate channels, all the while trying to stay alive in the process.

          Now, I don't discount the possibility that we have a legitimate descendant of Chuck Norris in our ranks (who undoubtedly would be capable of performing all these tasks, left-handed, while reassembling his weapon blindfolded), but am afraid that this would pose an overwhelming and near impossible challenge to a mere mortal. Again, I'd be happy to be proven wrong, in which case I'd likely retreat to my lair and sulk for a day (but only a day).

          As for the claim that we need any gun we have, I'd like to suggest that in this case, the mike might well be mightier than the sword. A commander that can direct the squads, time everyone's moves, and make us execute relatively complex combat manoeuvres that would otherwise be hard to pull off, beats having one more bullet dispenser on the battlefield, in my humble opinion.

          That all said, I fully agree with the need for predetermined roles and assignments for each of the squads. Not that these plans will survive first contact with the enemy, but anyway... :)

          <insert signature spam here>


          • #6
            Re: Team Commander/Squad Organization

            I agree we need to be organized but I'm not sure why SLs can't organize themselves already having a basic framework of who's going to attack/defend each point, etc. The majority of decisions should already be made, which flags (or points) are a priority (and in which order), what squads are going to be air, armor, infantry, etc. What squads are going to hold which flags (or points), which squads are going to attack which flags (or points).

            The decisions to be made are really going to be more about someone just making a call and EVERYONE agreeing to go with it regardless if they personally object or more so believe there's a better option available. This is the only potential issue I see, we need someone with the last say.

            The regular game is already fast paced enough... an all TG scrim is bound to produce information overload for everyone, this is where the basic game plan will come into play. If we are stymied then we may need to improvise which the SLs will have the best information and they'll be able to make the call themselves.
            |TG-88th| DaddyOfThree


            • #7
              Re: Team Commander/Squad Organization

              I'm in favor of SLs being in charge once the fighting starts. I'm all for having a CO for the forums and as a guide before the match but without specific commander tools in game (SatTrack and UAVs) the role loses all of its power, i.e. spotting hostiles. That being said if this is truly going to be 32v32 then one missing person isn't going to make a big difference and having a single person monitor the squads could help (I'm just unsure how effective this person can be). I know I'm good at taking sides.

              I think before we get too far into the CO thing we need to establish squads and see if the SLs are first willing and second able to coordinate with each other effectively. A big problem I foresee is making sure air and armor power is being used in the right places and in coordination with infantry (covering an advance or denying incoming hostiles). This is the biggest plus I can see from a CO, someone aligning the armor with the infantry. It could be nice to use someone from the air or armor squads in complete control of the armor. Like wise we could use the 4 man squads as big fire teams and have one SL rule 2 fire teams (1 SL + 7 soldiers). I envision the SL would be like a mini CO and have the second fire team have a group leader and let the main SL focus on guiding the two groups. That would help consolidate the power a good bit in my opinion. Unfortunately I have little experience doing this (other than some smaller scale stuff back from 2142 with two fire teams of 3 and the SL still in charge of the whole 6). Just an idea I hope others can expand and improve.
              Reapator, overlord of ponies


              • #8
                Re: Team Commander/Squad Organization

                I think the idea of having two infantry squads or an infantry squad and armor squad being led by one main SL and a sub-SL is great idea. A dedicated CO during the game seems like it wouldn't be inefficient. I do understand the need to have an ultimate voice of leadersip where that person's decision is final, though.


                • #9
                  Re: Team Commander/Squad Organization

                  A thought that crossed my mind while reading these posts: why does the in game CO have to be a SL? If t,he CO plays the recon role w/ a MAV as part of a squad, we dont lose a SL. The CO would then have an birds eye view, be mobile and we wouldn't lose a SL.
                  If we use the idea of 2 squads working together for AA/AT & infantry, they wouldn't really be hampered by the loss of one person. Where the team could benefit.

                  Just a thought,


                  • #10
                    Re: Team Commander/Squad Organization

                    I think as RU, we definitely should have one. There is a relatively safe space for the CO to spawn (Charlie) that must also be defended. Also, they, and their squad, can watch the entire lagoon. They might not have spotting tools, but if both arms get attacked, SLs might very well be too busy to devote their full attention to the map. For instance, if someone spots a RHIB going off to the side but can't engage, the CO can actually see where that is. Keeping the US off the island cap points entirely is the fastest way to bleed tickets, and having someone able to try to coordinate defenses by fiat instead of SLs communicating can speed things up. If/when Charlie gets threatened, the CO's position isn't so critical that he or she can't fight directly.

                    As the US, I see less of a purpose for a CO. Sls adapting and good planning beforehand should be enough.
                    I can ADS using more than a 2x without significant stutter! This was a good patch.


                    • #11
                      Re: Team Commander/Squad Organization

                      Like hil3illy, I think the commander need not be a squad leader at all. The recon w/ MAV is very appropriate for the CO, giving a great perspective of the battlefield.


                      • #12
                        Re: Team Commander/Squad Organization

                        FYI, the reason I'm holding off on SL assignment and squad organization is that I'd like to see where this thread goes and what the consensus is before that happens. I know I don't like to make decisions without all the information I can find, so here's a list of the people who volunteered to squad lead and were chosen for Team Alpha:


                        That means we have eight potential squad leaders and eight possible squads. Our volunteers for air assets were as follows:


                        As you can see, the lists don't intersect, so we'll have to organize a bit differently when it comes to the air--and possibly the armor--squads. I like the idea of running two squads as a single fireteam for the coordination of air and land vehicular assets, too, but I'll have to do the numbers to see how it would come out in the wash.

                        The poll is open for another four days. Once it's closed I'll take everyone's votes and comments into account and work out a roster, then post it in a separate thread and close this one to prevent confusion.


                        • #13
                          Re: Team Commander/Squad Organization

                          I thought I volunteered for SL? I'd feel useful either in the attack chopper or SL-ing a squad focusing on frustration and flanking.

                          I plan on posting my thoughts on SLs/Commanders later this evening. I also plan on posting an accompanying strategy as well. Prepare for teh awesomes!


                          • #14
                            Re: Team Commander/Squad Organization

                            I can drop into a squad and just focus on shooting anything that pops into view if anyone else wants to take the spot. I am pretty sure DeF had also signed up for SL'ing as well.

                            Former TG-21st
                            Swift Mobile On Target


                            • #15
                              Re: Team Commander/Squad Organization

                              I'll check with Arun on whether or not he included pilots in that list. It's likely he was focusing on infantry squad leaders instead.




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