Sunday, March 15, 2015

Command Modern Air and Naval Operations - Not a Piloting Team, Just a Commander

Heads up, Command Modern Air and Naval Operations has been updated to version 1.07.

Click and open in a new window for a better view.
When I edited this Command Modern Air and Naval Operations scenario I had in mind the discussion in Milan Vego's Soviet Naval Tactics about the geometry on how to a submarine searches and intercepts surface contacts.

On a side note I eventually released the scenario but it was a flop with a lot of people not being able to play it. Yikes! My apologies, folks.

The geometry of interception is explained in chapter 13 (Strikes by Multipurpose Submarines) of the before mentioned book and it's a matter of simple trigonometry.

This figure, from Vego's book is actually oriented towards search. However, if you look at it carefully,  the "triangle of speed" can be applied towards the calculation of interception angles. 
In my (wrong) mindset, I played my own scenario over and over, micromanaging speed and course of my Soviet submarine, lamenting not being able to draw lines to assist my calculations.

Today I decided to play it differently. Instead of "driving", I "commanded". I set up a patrol mission (red area in the first screenshot) and let my virtual crew do their thing. Immediately, they headed towards the patrol area (note the plotted course shown as a white line).

Right click and open in a new window for a better view. The patrol mission I set up for my submarine. Crucial for this mission is the tick box "Investigate contacts outside the patrol area", which means that even ships detected outside the red patrol area will be actively looked after.
Right click and open in a new window for a better view. And they came! New contacts in yellow. My virtual crew has figured out the interception course of my submarine (blue icon) as 206 degrees, 3 knots. I eventually reduced the speed to 1 knot right when the enemy ships were close enough. I made quit a mess on the convoy.
So, there was no need for me drawing lines and calculating anything. I had a virtual crew all the time. All I had to do is to let them know what I wanted done.



Johan said...

Yeah, creating missions is one of the strong points of Command. This will allow you to easily handle global engagements with hundreds of units without the need to micromanage everything.

However, if all you have is a single sub, micromanaging might be more fun than just setting up a mission and watching the sub do its own thing. :-)

Erich said...

Command has really evolved into something quite special as of 1.06-1.07. It's an outstanding learning tool and has taught me a lot of things about everything from intercept geometries to just how bad British torps were until about 1986. I'm having a ball with it. As a game, it's also really good, assuming you play a well-designed scenario. Just finished "Regulus", which is about late 50's USN diesel boats trying to infiltrate past the Kurile Islands barrier defenses. It's a real nail-biter and will teach you a lot about how to run a "smoke boat" properly!