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Drop the package/rescue captured pilot


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#1 J2_Trupobaw

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Posted 21 November 2016 - 06:28 PM

Hey, 

The "capture enemy plane" mission proposal gave me few ideas for flavour missions... perhaps to much flavour, not sure how workable they are. (Oh, and please merge the threads if you believe it shouldn't be separate discussion). Both are situational so they may be unintended ways to deny them to enemy, or abuse them.

Drop the package (wreath/ message). There is lots variants of how it can work, I'm including them all so best one can be chosen.

Done historically many times before 1917, this will suit best early missions. Your side has either killed an enemy pilot, or brought one down alive and captured. Now, either you've decided to drop a memorial wreath on downed pilots airfield, or hospitalised enemy has asked you to drop a letter to his relatives on his field. The intelligence officer decided that it will make good propaganda piece and the flight was quietly approved. 

Triggered by:
Your side killing an enemy pilot dead, dead, dead (wreath variant)

Enemy pilot ending his flight alive, on the ground, behind your lines (can this me detected in mission?) - message variant. (Weaker, because enemy pilots may kill themselves to prevent triggering it?).

Mission: The package plane - a special single or two seater carrying the package must go over enemy airfield at low (1500-2000m) altitude, fire 3 red flares to bring attention to himself, and wait for message "wreath/message has been dropped", then return safely to his home airfield. The journalists and observers from neutral countries have been "accidentally" ferried in to interview them, there is even camera to make movie of his landing, and propaganda value will be lost if he ditches in the field! 

Variants:
There may be simpler "two wreathes" variant, where both sides get this mission when their kill their first enemy and both score 1 point if their package pilot lands.  Or there can be "one wreath" variant, where the first side to kill an enemy gets to drop the wreath, and other side gets their point by stopping the wreath plane from returning home (so, if the wreath plane takes off and lands he scores a point, if he gets downed or gets lost or runs out of fuel enemy gets the point). The first variant is simpler and less likely to unbalance the game.


Rescue a downed pilot
 

Your side is doing badly, and now a skilled pilot assigned to special mission has been brought down behind enemy lines and is either captured or hiding. You must bring him back for sake of morale.

This is inspired by movies and accounts to numerous to count - a pilot landing next to downed comrade to bring him back has almost become a cliche... unless you do it yourself ;) . But it was done historically, JG1 itself was sending search and rescue missions when MvR went down behind the lines, until his death was confirmed. A variant of spy mission, meant to give something to do to side that completed or busted all their missions already, and salvage some points!

 

Triggered by: Your side losing both  specialist planes of one type before they trigger all possible objectives. You have no spy planes to pick the spy, or picked the spy but failed to bring him back and/or inpect the area he points to, or lost both general planes without capturing him, or lost both recon planes without completing the trench map. Anyway, a multi-points mission is a bust, some targets can't be activated. 

At this moment, one of your lost pilots is assumed to be behind enemy lines (there is no requirement to actually lose one, we should be encouraging people to try and go home, not to get captured to trigger missions). You can go and try to bring him back, and win back one point if you succeed. This mission only triggers once, regardless of how many other missions you have busted :), and it cannot bring your score over 12. If your side is doing well, it is never triggered! It is meant to give a losing side something to fight for in endgame, and another chance to bring their score closer to 12.


There are many ways to implement this mission... either look for flares from downed plane (clone of spy mission), or look for prisoner convoy (clone of general mission). Here is maximalist approach for long and interesting mission, it amy be made simpler by cutting parts away. 

-Rescuers are given 3 locations on the map (chosen from named "objective villages")
-One of locations contains downed plane. There's 50% chance that pilot is there and flaring, if so, rescue plane must land within 3k to pick him up.
-If pilot is not on plane location, rescuers are directed to prisoner convoy at a named location.
-Convoy consists of open topped guard tracks and closed topped prisoner truck. Guard trucks must be destroyed before rescue is possible. After guard tracks are destroyed the prisoner truck halts, and rescue plane can land in 3k to pick up the pilot. 
-only special rescue plane can pick up the pilot. His side scores one point if he lands on friendly side, or if he is still flying at end of hostilities, after picking up the pilot. 

-for extra flavour: if rescue plane lands on friendly airfield with a human gunner, that gunner has death/capture penalty removed.

 

All locations are known to rescuers and other side is not informed of the mission - if things have gone so far that this mission is in play, the rescuers are racing against the clock already. Of course, if defenders notice a downed plane that does not despawn at named location, they know what is coming...

 

Of course, we can just have "strafe convoy and rescue prisoner" mission as alternative to spy/general, without all the fuss described above ;).

 


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#2 Butzzell

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 04:48 PM

S! Trupobaw,

 

 

 

Drop the package.  After the Osten Memorial, I tried to make a "Drop the wreath mission".   This is now the "Capture plane" mission. The trigger for both is the killing of the AI enemy ace. That is a random spawn somewhere along your friendly lines. You kill him and then you would drop a wreath over enemy 2 seater base at under 300 meters. Very low.  The AAA around 2 seater bases is very heavy and set to highest AI level. After you drop wreath AAA is turned off. Everyone on the ground wants to see what you dropped.  Some people thought it was too easy. That is where the Capture enemy plane came in.  I still think it is a good mission with an appropriate trigger.  I like the flare idea. It would be cool if the complex trigger function worked. The flares would actually trigger the mission complete. It would make it more interactive.  So this mission is available now. Same question, is it too easy?

 

 

Rescue a downed pilot: 

 

What is the trigger for the downed pilot to rescue?  Does it have to be a pilot that is shot down over enemy lines and is able to land?  Do we need a new trigger? The question becomes one of time.  If this is about a real pilot shot down, it might not happen. There might not be a downed pilot. Enemy shooting you down now have an incentive to make sure you are dead.  If it is in the second hour, do you have enough time to send out a special plane? Or this can be done by the game at the start. The game picks a location as you described. The 2 seater can land at any time and pick up the downed pilot. Not necessarily a real human but part of the mission. The 2 seater needs to land at a friendly field to complete mission.   Yes, a special rescue plane would be needed to track the mission. The mechanics are the same as spy or general mission. It would count as a mission. After it is complete, the commander can pick a downed pilot (if any) to fly again. Actually you would be able to pick a downed pilot anytime after the mission is complete. You still get the mission point and you get a pilot back if available or when he becomes available. Say we complete the mission but no one is available. 20 minutes later someone is shot down behind enemy lines. The team leader could pick this pilot to fly again. Would a 5 minute wait be long enough?  Unlike the spy that has an unknown location, you would know the location of the downed pilot for rescue. It makes the mission available from the start and faster to complete.

 

 

The mission needs to be available to both sides because it involves a human pilot being able to fly again. 

 

 

JG1 uses a streak method for medals. I would think that a pilot shot down over enemy lines and later rescued would not loose his streak. hint hint, wink wink,

 

Both the wreath and rescue mission are computer friendly. They use very little resources and can be adapted to many maps.  There are some maps with very bad ground that make it hard to pick landing spots.

 

 

An option on the spy mission.  The spy is returning by submarine and has vital info. The spy plane must rendezvous with the submarine to pick up the spy.

 

Originally the general was escorted by an AAA truck and 2 regular trucks. You killed all the other vehicles. The general got scared and fired the flare as a surrender message. Then you landed to pick him up. It was a higher difficulty than the spy. The extra vehicles were dropped to lighten the computer AI load and cycle time.  RoF  just does not like a lot of live things.


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#3 J2_Trupobaw

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Posted 22 November 2016 - 09:54 PM

S! Buttzzell.

I though the trigger for "rescue the pilot" mission is not a human pilot actually getting captures (we want to encourage people to keep trying and go home, not land behind the lines to trigger mission). Think of downed pilot as of "non player character", like spy and general. He may be one of human pilots, he may be someone else, he might have been downed yesterday. 

The trigger may be to complex, I am ignorant on this. The mission is triggered by losing both irreplacable "specialised planes" - spyplanes, capture planes, recon planes, ground attack planes etc - IF some of the objectives it activates are still not active. 

For instance - if recon plane 1 is lost and recon plane 2 is lost and HQ recon mission is not done (making HQ bombardment and following reserve unit missions impossible to activate) -> activate rescue mission.

If spyplane 1 is lost and spyplane 2 is lost and ("return spy" mission is not complete or "Spion says look in sector X" mission is not active yet) -> activate the rescue mission. 

The idea is, first time when your side loses the ability to activate an objective, because special airframes needed to activate it are all lost, it gets this special mission as second chance to win one, and only one, point back. So instead of situation "We have six points already, lost both spyplanes and both recon planes so other 6 points are not obtainable, we have nothing to do but defend" you have situation "We have six points already, lost both spyplanes and both recon planes so other 6 points are not obtainable, we got rescue mission and can try winning seventh point".


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#4 Butzzell

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Posted 23 November 2016 - 06:10 PM

S!

 

The lost plane trigger can be done but it is complicated and there is a lot of room for error.

 

Just have the mission ready from the start?

 

 

I have been working on the next FIF.  In the new area there are plenty of Rail Roads and Rivers.

 

Objectives:

 

Central                                                         Entente

HQ Recon                                                HQ recon

Strategic recon                                        Front line recon

Espion (Spy)                                            Capture General

train                                                         Train

Ship on a river                                         Ship on a river

Bridge                                                      Bridge

Factory                                                    Factory

Aerodrome                                              Aerodrome

Arty spot                                                  Arty spot

Arty secondary                                        Arty secondary

HQ Recon secondary                              HQ Recon secondary

Reserve unit                                            Reserve unit

Espion target                                           Trench attack

Bomb HQ                                                 Bomb HQ

Rescue                                                    Rescue

 

That brings both sides up to 15 objectives. Hopefully that is too many to do. Commanders will have to prioritize what they want done.  If you loose all the planes for one mission, do something else.

 

I would like to add the package drop for Entente. We can either drop one of the other Entente objectives or add package drop for Central as well.  That would bring it  up to 16 objectives per side.  Very nice.

 

Capture enemy plane is very nice mission but has a lot of problems with positioning of enemy bases. It gets computer AI heavy.


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#5 danudet

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Posted 24 November 2016 - 12:42 AM

There is a solve to the AI issue with the capture the plane mission.  Instead of making it an AI controlled aircraft, make it a player controlled aircraft.  Create 1 and only 1 X-aircraft and assign a real pilot to fly it.  The flight must be flown within certain boundaries indicated on the map and/or at a block altitude (preventing the pilot from climbing up to 6k m to never be seen).  If after a certain period of time, the pilot is able to land at a specified (secret) airbase then their team scores a point, or if not, then the enemy receives a message indicating where the prototype aircraft can be found


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#6 Joker_BR

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Posted 27 December 2016 - 01:04 PM

The "rescue pilot" mission reminds me a mission that I tried to do to learn e editor so long ago.
1) bomb a building (prison) to create havoc
2) move an ambulance from a near town into the site and out (resistance taking the pilot out of prison disguised as medic)
3) park the ambulance on a field nearby
4) land the plane and take the pilot
5) at takeoff, alert the enemy team (message) of the impending escape and the location, so they can move in fighters to try to stop the flee
6) mission is completed only if landed at friendly territory

#7 Butzzell

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Posted 27 December 2016 - 07:31 PM

S! Joker

 

Very nice scenario.    The havoc confusion idea is nice.

 

 At this point our rescue mission starts at beginning of session.  It just says go to this spot and land. You get prisoner and have to return to friendly lines.

 

Should we make a bombed target a trigger for the rescue mission?   We have three icon targets, one of which is an aerodrome. Should we bomb the aero and then rescue our prisoner who was working there as forced labor? During the confusion of the attack, they would never notice an enemy plane landing, would they?


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#8 danudet

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Posted 27 December 2016 - 09:02 PM

That actually sounds pretty cool


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#9 Joker_BR

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Posted 27 December 2016 - 09:14 PM

S! Butzzell

 

The idea isn't *only* to rescue the pilot, but "coordinate" actions and be pressed by timed movements.

 

First, there is the bombing part, which is "easy" (see ** below) 

Then, there's a small waiting time until the ambulance can get to the target and leave with our pilot (in fact, there's no need to be an actual ambulance moving at the map - although it would be extra cool - but rather waiting a minute or two - perhaps random time?)

During the waiting time, the team has two choices - the same plane that bombed the site can loiter nearby, trying to hid from enemy eyes (even landed and keeping engine running), or the team can coordinate with a second plane (a faster one?) arriving few minutes later just in time to pick up the pilot.

Then there's the hardest part, where the enemy is alerted about the escape. Perhaps this alert should be raised at the same time that the pilot's team is notified that he is ready to be picked up - to spice things up and create some sort of a "race against time" scenario (one team still has to land and pick him up while the other team is already moving fighters to the area). Escape such scenario can prove difficult.

 

Also, I would choose a new place, without AA guns, to represent a prison: let's say a factory site (not the actual factory target, but a different one) - or even a city!. Small damage to the buildings would be enough, since our objective isn't properly the destruction of the target, but rather the confusion needed to allow the resistance fellas to get in disguised as medics to rescue our pilot. I don't know if it is possible, but perhaps *avoid bombing a specific building* could be part of the mission, as our pilot would be held inside it during the bombing. If that particular building is hit by accident, the mission is a failure.

 

**Things could even be made more complex, let's say, including triggers over nearby aerodromes for alerting enemies that a plane is approaching - much like balloons work today, but with reduced range. This would force the planes to actually plan a flight, in and out routes, and not just flight straight up to the target, to avoid being detected ahead of the time. But I digress... I don't have a clue about the complexity of doing any of this, I just know that the editor is some sort of black art, and I'm very happy with what we already have in FIF. 

 

Waiting for the next. Even purchased some extra packs for my planes on last sale.

Cheers.



#10 Butzzell

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Posted 27 December 2016 - 10:27 PM

S! Joker

 

Uhmm  RoF  has a prison.  Have you seen the castle.  It looks like an old time prison  Well, it has high walls and towers.   There are only 2 special planes that can do the rescue. So they can be part of the package or they can come in later.

 

We have not done announcements of enemy positions or achievements. There is no message to the enemy that the spy has been picked up or the General captured.  This keeps the fog of war very thick. There are enough people in the air that a random encounter is very possible.  

 

The map has enough areas of interest for offense and defense that the only direct route is flown by the arty spot planes. Pretty sure everyone else is trying to avoid everyone else except for some of the fighter patrols.

 

The present system uses complex triggers. They take up some computer time. Adding a building as a target is very expensive. The program does not like live objects. We get away with having a huge number of available objects in FiF because most of them are turned off and only turned on when needed. Buildings are a different problem. They can not be turned off. That is why there are so few building targets. While we only have one factory as an active target, the other three are all alive taking up computer resources.  We get away with the bridges because the actual target is the AAA gun.

 

The Aerodrome target started out as four actual planes on the field. It was a real resource hog. It was changed to the oil drums. Like the factories, all four are alive. When it was switched to oil drums the AAA was changed to high and low level in an effort to make the Aerodrome a high level bombing target. Most people do on the deck bombing.   Is it time to make it more resource friendly and put an AAA truck in the middle of the oil drums and make that the real target. That would get rid of 6 live targets.  Leave all the other AAA as well so that it is still very dangerous.

 

Two of those six objects that we just eliminated could be converted into the prison bombing. You add a small building to the prison.Inside is an automobile. Very easy to turn off or on and uses minimal computer resources. 

 

The avoid bombing thingie has been looked at. Specifically we looked at trains. Bombing a train with red crosses on it would be a horrendous criminal act prompting a revenge raid. We had trouble picking a revenge target. A convent, a hospital, a school. All of these looked to be just as evil as bombing a red cross train.  The original General Capture mission was an avoidance thing as well. He had 2 escorts that must be destroyed and then he would signal a surrender. Unfortunately he died a lot in the attack. We went straight for the surrender.


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#11 Joker_BR

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Posted 27 December 2016 - 11:04 PM

The AA between the oil drums is a must. I think that the Aerodrome target is the easiest of all: drop a single (small) bomb over your shoulder and get it done, you don't even need to be accurate. Sure an AA at the same spot will heat up things a little. I got shot in the face two times while approaching an AA truck for strafing - they *are* deadly.

 

As for the alert about the prisoner, it was to simulate the guards noticing his escape and alerting the vicinity positions... in this case, it has nothing to do with the "fog of war", but rather try to mimic real life during prison escapes: they were most often short-lived. Perhaps the prison can shoot some flares out (i.e. a red flare every 30s x 3 times) instead of a screen message. This will bring the attention to someone flying nearby (if any). Taking into consideration that this will happens way back into enemy territory, and the majority of enemy flights will be at the front or beyond, there's less chance to be seen, but still there is some. Of course we can simply forget this part if people think that this will rise the difficulty too much. In reality, any version of this mission (with or without the alert, or special building, etc) would be nice to have (in my opinion, of course). Perhaps starting with a simple version, just bombing a target, landing and picking up the POW is more than enough. After a few missions we can reassess and see if things need to be changed.

 

Thanks for the insights about the "inner things" of a mission. These "little details" (optimizations) that we don't see while playing make the hard work made by the developers even more impressive.

 

Cheers.



#12 Butzzell

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Posted 28 December 2016 - 05:23 AM

The flare idea is nice. We use that for the General and the spy.  Easy to do and lets you know you have killed the target. Alerts people in visual range. Creates some danger.  And, it does not have to be way back in enemy area.  It depends on the map and the availability.


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#13 Butzzell

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Posted 28 December 2016 - 07:25 AM

Ok, latest iteration.  You come in near the prison. outside is a tent city with an AAA truck. Kill the truck. It spawns an ambulance that runs to the closest field and fires two flares. You can then land the Rescue plane to  save the prisoner.  The ambulance has to get to the airfield. The distance is under 1 km. The ambulance runs at 30 Kph. so it is under 2 minutes. Adds some danger.


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#14 Joker_BR

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Posted 28 December 2016 - 12:59 PM

I like it very much, this has all the elements of the original plan on it: the bombing (even more dangerous because the AA), the alert, the waiting, etc. I would like to do this mission.

#15 Butzzell

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Posted 28 December 2016 - 08:53 PM

The ambulance fires 2 flares when it gets to the airfield to signal he is ready to be picked up.   After you land it takes about 30 seconds to get the picked up message.  It feels a lot longer.  

 

 

The mission will be running on the JG1 server for the next several weeks.  Each side has a balloon at their 2 seater base. If you get on the server and ther is not enough time to do a mission, you can kill the balloon. Killing the balloon resets the server.  Please ask other players if it is ok before killing the balloon. 


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#16 Joker_BR

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Posted 29 December 2016 - 12:43 PM

Hi Butzzell, tried the mission today. It is working perfectly, and the "sense of danger" is there. Just to clarify ( I haven't tested this ): to pick up the pilot, it is mandatory to land the plane on the aerodrome or can we land near the ambulance, outside the airfield? I'm asking because when I played the ambulance didn't quite get to the aerodrome, but stopped nearby in an adjacent field. I landed at the aerodrome and the mission worked, but I felt I would be more "protected" if landed nearby the ambulance because there were some trees there.

In the last 5 min I found the ace AI enemy pilot and shot it down, but unfortunately without time to get to his aerodrome and hijack the plane afterwards. Hope to try it today.

So far, excellent work on the missions. New FiF will be a blast with the new variations.

#17 J5_Gamecock

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Posted 29 December 2016 - 02:45 PM

Just home from Christmas visit with Mother Hen... Great stuff here! I have a few questions about the "rescue" mission tho.

 

 Am I correct in the fact that the prison will always be near an airfield, and that location will be told to our side at mission start? 

 

 Also, once captured prisoner is "on board", will enemy be notified of escape? If yes, then also the location of escape?(I think I understood you to say NO to this, but just to verify)

 

I like having the new missions.Very much looking forward to our next outing.


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#18 Butzzell

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Posted 29 December 2016 - 02:53 PM

S!

 

 

Yes, sort of.    The prison is an Icon labeled target. There are four.  You have to kill an AAA truck. This puts it on par with bridge and now the Aerodrome. After you kill the AAA an Ambulance spawns and runs to the airfield. Once there, he signals ready to be picked up by shooting two flares. When he is close to the airfield he gets out of the ambulance and runs to the hangars to hide. Enemy at the airfield run to the ambulance to see what is going on. After he is picked up you must return to an active friendly air base.   If you die on the way home, there is a second plane that can do the mission.  A second attempt just has to land at the airfield if the AAA truck has been killed.  The only notice to the enemy is the two flares. That is the same as the spy and the general.

 

 

The enemy ace is not a hijack enemy plane objective. The enemy ace starts the wreath drop mission.


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#19 Joker_BR

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Posted 29 December 2016 - 03:20 PM

The enemy ace is not a hijack enemy plane objective. The enemy ace starts the wreath drop mission.

 

Interesting. Read somewhere an idea involving an ace AI plane that was some sort of hijacking mission for a test plane, where after downing this new AI plane, someone would need to go to a specific enemy airfield, land, and take off with an "uberplane" (a model higher than the currently available on the mission), bringing it home. Kept it in my head as I found it a very cool idea.

 

On the other hand, it is strange that while I was flying the rescue pilot mission, there were several messages stating that the drop wreath mission was completed (green) - and I was thinking "what is this?" - but then almost in the end of the mission I was notified about an ace plane circling on sector Q-Beta. Got there and downed him, less than 10 min to mission's end.

 

Are there more than one ace AI flying in the same mission? Otherwise, the message saying that the wreath drop was completed shouldn't appear, as the trigger (downing the AI ace) wasn't done until the last minute, and the mission should be active again only after mission restart, right?

Will try the wreath drop mission today and see how it goes.

 

Cheers.



#20 Butzzell

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Posted 29 December 2016 - 05:31 PM

S!

 

The hijack enemy plane was a lot of fun. The channel map has plenty of airfields. It would work here. The problem is that it is very computer resource hungry.  Wreath drop is very resource friendly.

 

Subtitles on wreath drop were checked and adjusted. should be fine now.


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