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Rydygier

HETMAN - Artificial Commander

For HAC users: What is the maximum number of simultaneously used by you Leaders?  

63 members have voted

  1. 1. For HAC users: What is the maximum number of simultaneously used by you Leaders?

    • Only one
      3
    • Two
      18
    • Three
      9
    • Four of them
      15
    • Five
      0
    • Six
      6
    • Seven
      0
    • All eight!
      12


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If other people do not have described problems, I do not need to take them into account. That's good. Maybe this has been corrected in CO (OA), and maybe again this is related with problem, about which I said you via PM.

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Quite a lot of stuff has been corrected in CO. Also while I use mods it is unlikely that they impact something like soldiers moving as unit. They are the kind that impact AI behavior in combat and their responses to situations.

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Thanks for considering the stuff I posted, just some odd ideas I threw out at 4 in the morning because I couldn't stop playing with this! :D

One question, do you plan on making this compatible in your future release(s) with OA units? Or maybe even going as far as adding in the DLC's BAF and PMC? Or ACE even? I understand that it is something you can do yourself, unfortunately I lack the knowledge of how to going about doing it/making it work properly...I'm new to the coding/scripting aspect of the game and I'm slowly figuring out that I'm no good at it. It might be a lot of work/something you don't wish to do but I think it would help a lot of people out who are in the same boat as me. Sorry if you mentioned anything on this before.

EDIT:

Efficiently moving a column of vehicles on the road is a hard thing. So far I have not seen any script that would solved this issue. Each of the tried is sometimes unreliable. In addition, the best move vehicles very slowly. BTW I noticed that also infantry is moving on the road in a bizarre manner. Hence, I am rather willing make to moving unit avoided roads ...

Something I am aware of that may or may not help is the unit disableAI "FSM", it is supposed to disable AI behavior (http://community.bistudio.com/wiki/disableAI). I cannot confirm how well it works in game yet, but it may be a good alternative to a script to get them moving in column formation. By disabling their behavior one would assume that they would no longer drive all over the road in attempt to attack or avoid whatever threat there is, I also did read somewhere that by enabling this code you will see AI move in a snakelike pattern when traveling to way points, which is perfect for column formations.

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I haven't OA, only Arma 2 1.10 (disableAI FSM is command from OA). But adding under HAC control units from other addons, like ACE, or from OA, BAF etc. is easy. See this example:

RHQ(B) category arrays

and some rules.

See also manual for more details about RHQ arrays. This way you can add any new units under HAC control. Need only their classnames. This thread will help with OA, BAF and other units classnames:

http://forums.bistudio.com/showthread.php?t=73241&page=2

If in any doubt just ask. Gladly help.

Edited by Rydygier

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There is no need to disable AI, it should be on its toes in case its attacked.

The odd behavior you guys see like turning around and driving back is caused by AI trying to get into order. Once they do there is a moment before whole convoy will catch steady peace, once its do its smooth ride. I said that tracked units are a bit messy at turns but its nothing big.

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Some interesting ideas, It would be great if any were added that they could be optional, similar maybe to upsmon?

The reason is this might be used with out all forces, I.e infantry only, or on maps with no or little roading, also the latest patch has vastly improved AI ability across the board.

If it can't be optional then maybe 2 version :)

A lite version where the commander only issues waypoints and the mission maker may choose to add something if wanted.

And another version that has side missions and things.

On that note, it was mentioned earlier maybe by taro8 that infantry move to fast, I agree, Infantry can currently run across a whole map and back, this impacts on missions dramatically, for example infantry with AT can cover large distances easily.

If there was an option to limit AI infantry movement in distance if on foot then it may become more tactilly interesting, for example foot infantry waypoint distance limited to 1km? And a new one not issued till after a certain period to simulate rest, also the mission maker may decide to only provide limited or no transport for one side.

Anyway, this is already really great as it is, personally I would just like to see the commanders decision making optimized to the max and allow the mission maker to customize the mission how he wants to begin with, just my 25cents worth :D

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The fatigue is my main issue with infantry running around everywhere. I HAVE TO RUN TOO! After my squad gets int combat I cant shoot for shit as muzzle sway makes me spray bullets everywhere.

Rest simulation is painfully easy: just divide path into 2-3Km sections and add timeout for each waypoint. This way infantry will stop and wait every time it covers section.

UPSMON eats a lot of memory, especially if there is a lot of units involved. IMHO it should be only used to call for specific unit behavior like ambush or urban patrol for single units. Otherwise it will be to hard on PC.

Still basic version have priority.

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No I didn't mean include upsmon, just used it as example of how you could include or remove different options if different options were provided.

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Sorry, I didnt read close enough. Still using some parts of UPSMON would be nice.

Another idea: when infantry is sent for scouting their way is devided into 2 sections. One with normal move and around 300-400m before target they are switched to stealth mode.

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I haven't OA, only Arma 2 1.10 (disableAI FSM is command from OA). But adding under HAC control units from other addons, like ACE, or from OA, BAF etc. is easy. See this example:

RHQ(B) category arrays

and some rules.

See also manual for more details about RHQ arrays. This way you can add any new units under HAC control. Need only their classnames. This thread will help with OA, BAF and other units classnames:

http://forums.bistudio.com/showthread.php?t=73241&page=2

If in any doubt just ask. Gladly help.

Thanks, I appreciate it very much!!! I plan on trying this out tonight first chance I get, maybe I'll be able to get it working the way I want. Although ArmA 3 is coming out soon and you may or may not be purchasing it, I still highly recommend you try out OA for the time being, its a great addition to A2 and it may help further this even more! :D

There is no need to disable AI, it should be on its toes in case its attacked. The odd behavior you guys see like turning around and driving back is caused by AI trying to get into order. Once they do there is a moment before whole convoy will catch steady peace, once its do its smooth ride. I said that tracked units are a bit messy at turns but its nothing big.

I have noticed that they do move around and bump into each other to get in order, but sometimes it'll still even do it when you set them up as "IN FORMATION" and even assigning each one in order according to rank. However, what I'm trying to propose is the AI to be disabled for those support units only. That way if you have a moving convoy, it will travel along the road and ignore most threats in terms of combating them and instead do what they're supposed to do: supply actual combat units. I have trouble all the time with vehicles moving even with the 1.60 patch, tanks will swivel around on the road when engaged, cars will smash into each other badly when trying to take turns, drive off the road, up mountains...etc. usually when under contact from the enemy. This is the kind of behavior you wouldn't want with a supply convoy.

If anything I personally believe the best solution to engaging a threat would be based off of how many units were accompanying the convoy. At best, maybe a new group could be created specifically for supply convoys. It may require some kind of script to work the way my mind is thinking of it, but it would go something like this:

x1 lead HMMWV Mk19, followed by x1 ammo truck, then x1 repair truck, 1x HMMWV M2 in the middle, 1x fuel truck, and ending with x1 last HMMWV M2

Creating a 6 car convoy. This is my example, variants could be created..one eliminating the center HMMWV mushing all supply units together...one with only a single supply unit and one to two HMMWV's defending it...etc.

Thought process for the group guys like this: Mk19 could deal with any major and immediate threats, while the center M2 handles anything the Mk19 may have missed, and the final M2 in the convoy is able to engage enemies attacking from behind. The ammo and repair truck would follow in the front based off importance. The ammo truck in my opinion is most expendable, if it is destroyed then friendly units can always pick up ammo and guns from dead bodies if the situation becomes that dire. The repair truck follows the ammo truck as it is able to repair most vehicles, technically making it the most important to both friendly units in combat as well as units in the convoy should they be damaged in an ambush or something. The fuel truck comes in last, nestled between two HMMWV's for two reason. One, it not only fuels friendly units but also fuels the convoy to move around the battlefield. Two, if I remember correctly even with vanilla ArmA the fuel truck explodes with more effect then any of the other vehicles. If this is still the case, it'd be more wise to isolate it from the other two support vehicles so that in the event of it being destroyed, it wouldn't affect the repair or ammo trucks.

Each HMMWV in the group would be filled with three Marines totaling in at 9 total, that way if they did come under intense fire they couldn't deal with using just support weapons, the convoy would fully stop on the road without attempting to take any kind of cover, and the Marines would disembark and take up a staggered column kind of position on either side of the road. As opposed to using an already defined fire team, instead the Marines would mostly be made up of rifleman with regular M16's with two of them carrying an M136, and maybe 1-2 automatic rifleman and 1 machine gunner to finish the whole group off (a mirrored method could be used for the Russians, their supply convoys would consist of Russian soldiers and UAZ's with the AGS-30 and KORD in place of HMMWV's). This way, any attackers are now dealing with the threat of supported weapons from any angle they choose to attack from, as well as troops who would already come with an AT launcher for soft vehicle targets and a machine gunner to deal with bigger threats. Once a certain amount of time passes after the threat is eliminated, the Marines would load back up and the convoy would continue moving again.

To balance things out and even keep it somewhat more realistic, the vehicles would stay stationary on the road in the same column formation they use when driving during contact, and the Marines would not stray far away from the road either once disembarked from their vehicles. To ensure the cars don't leave the column formation, it wouldn't be a bad idea for the drivers to disembark as well and join the fight (I often use this method when playing in my own convoy missions, with the drivers getting out of the vehicles they aren't going anywhere, giving the M2/Mk19 gunner a stable and stationary platform to shoot from). This means that if an attacker is lucky enough, he would be able to engage one of the supply or support vehicles with an AT weapon rendering it useless without the fear of it driving up the sides of mountains or getting stuck on rocks or chasing after him or something. Not only does it give attackers the chance to succeed when attacking, it also keeps the supply convoy doing exactly what it should: focusing mainly on supplying units instead of changing into a combat role and directly joining the fight. The above methods can mostly be done using waypoints, if you were interested in going into more scripting you could make it even more realistic. Instead of having the units stop stationary, they would instead pull off to either side of the road in order to create a formation called the "Herringbone". Here are some examples of said formation:

fig4-26a.gif

One of the pictures suggests 100 meters, I would make it much less than that if you were to implement it, and keep it close to the road. The advantage of this formation is that the vehicles are able to all have clear firing lanes on enemies, and the soldiers who disembark are also able to use the vehicles themselves as cover to assist in engaging the threats.

In order to give set routes for the convoys, I have to imagine that roads are defined by code in some specific way which directs vehicles to use them. What you could do is have convoys wait a certain amount of time for the battle to begin. Once fighting starts and units become positioned in certain areas more heavily than others, waypoints could be created to go to the roads closest to those forces. Forces more than a certain distance away from the road would be ignored as they'd be considered 'behind enemy lines' meaning its too risky and unpredictable to move to them. Once the convoy reaches the position of road closest to the forces they need to supply, they'd be ordered to halt and wait. The forces who needed supplies could break contact and fall back to the supply vehicles, get what they need, and rejoin the fight.

The reason I stress keeping supply units on the roads so much is because sending them off road like they do in warfare game modes leads to several potential problems. It would be a lot easier for them to end up breaking formation off road, separating themselves from the rest of their units (where one unit, particularly the lead unit, continues on forward even if at a slow pace while the others trail far behind), getting stuck on objects, etc. The biggest problem is that they are more prone to being attacked and destroyed off road then on. At least by moving on a road they are able to have clear, quick, and straight forward exits if there are enemies near or fighting just gets too intense. Off road results in them being unsure of exactly where to go to stay safe, driving in bad spots, getting stuck once again, running into large groups of enemies (since enemies are less likely to be using the roads)..etc.

Something interesting it would add however, is the potential to create more accurate and surefire roadside ambushes like in real life. Someone on here mentioned using an addon which had AI players lay down mines and such, this would be a great addition along with this idea for supply convoys. If it were assigned to engineers and special forces units only, it would give their (the special forces) class more of a purpose than just recon and scouting, as they would fall into their real life role a little more of conducting guerrilla warfare on the enemy. An example would be if they observed a certain area where enemy vehicles or supply convoys pass through often, they would be able to lay down explosives on the road and even wait to ambush them with gunfire once they triggered the explosion to eliminate the convoy all together.

I could see waypoints actually running that entire scenario except for the explosives script, if the commander was aware of enemy vehicles or a supply convoy passing heavily through an area, special forces would be relocated to this area and would move parallel along the road (to spot for enemies without fully exposing themselves in the open) with "HOLD FIRE, ENGAGE AT WILL" (to keep them from shooting at enemies unless they absolutely had to), "COMPACT COLUMN FORMATION" (to minimize their profile), and "STEALTH" set to keep them quiet and even more of a low profile. Once they were aware of enemies advancing, the script would activate and they would lay explosives along the road, then move back about 10-25 meters, facing the road, set with the same orders except with their formation changed to "LINE FORMATION" (so that all of their firepower is upfront and ready). Once the enemy unit triggers the explosive, they would change to "COMBAT" and "FIRE AT WILL", resulting in them taking up better cover and unleashing on whatever enemies were left over from the initial explosion.

Sorry for this being so long :butbut:, I've been thinking about it much of the afternoon since I'm off work and ways it could be improved. I've said it two other times and I'll say it again, this really is my most favorite mod for ArmA and I'd love to see it constantly improved upon. Take anything or nothing from this, its just suggestions, again sorry for the long read. Keep up the great work!!! :bounce3:

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Too much work. HAC is supposed to simply assign waypoints for units. Their actual behavior in combat and reactions are target for other addons.

This will be already lots of work for Rydygier, lets not add more with stuff that isnt in scope of this addon.

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Gotcha, I got a little carried away with that one aspect haha, I guess in my mind it probably seems a lot more simple than it truly is anyways.

I still think that regardless of everything else I wrote above the Special Forces idea I posted at the end would be cool to have implemented, it falls under the whole idea of HAC in terms of the commander ordering units to move and act against targets via waypoints, the only addition would be the script to add in them laying down explosives. If it already exists I'm sure it wouldn't be hard to get permission to use it. It at least gives the SF units a more broad role in terms of what they can do during combat.

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Yes, too complicated. Sorry. It is not just about the amount of work (eg, perhaps possible, but will be very troublesome to make the script recognize an areas, where enemies "heavily passing through"), but also here is that the more complex behavior, the more factors you need to consider , the easier it is to miss something, which destroy the whole idea. For example, the issue of deploying mines. Sounds good, but too easy to disrupt course of these activities. Sappers can be very easily spotted by the enemy, especially that they spring into action only when they see the enemy on road, enemy will likely to turn aside from the route and pass mines when fighting with sappers, these mines will be there and may run on them some allied unit...

Edited by Rydygier

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Yeah better leave this to player, or mission maker to make scripted ambushes.

EDIT:

HAC inflicts HUGE performance loss on Zagrabad. Also odd stuff happened, my squad was ordered to move over 100 Km, Im pretty sure it was the edge of map. Even small forces (4 infantry squads per side and 2 heavy attack choppers each) made my game freeze every few moments for a few seconds. Once I removed HAC stuff the game run normally. Zagrabad is urban map BTW.

Edited by Taro8

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That is weird, I played Zargabad just the other day and had no issues on it.

I was using four Marine fire teams and one LAV against five Russian infantry sections, a Spetznaz team, a BTR-90 and one of the GAZ armored vehicles. Mission lasted over 45 minutes and I didn't have a single hiccup in performance. Maybe it had something to do with helicopters, I will try this later.

Scrolling through the previous pages I didn't immediately see anything related, so I do want to report that both HAC commanders on the battlefield completely ignore the fact that there is a river/body of water in there way when assigning waypoints tp units. I played a mission on Podagorsk and Zargabad, both times I was finding random troops swimming around in water and losing there gear. Even in one instance on Podagorsk I witnessed a HMMWV drive straight into the river, destroying itself.

EDIT:

Also, does the commander make decisions in relation to moving his forces based off of how small/large the trigger is? It may have just been random coincidence that this happened, but I ran a mission using a large number of AI for either side that were supposed to both try and take over a little base on the map. The triggers I placed inside had small dimensions (25x30 I think), set as rectangular to fit the size of the base. I set the battle up ready to go, at first the SF teams for either side moved out and briefly engaged, but it stopped there. I re-loaded the mission and let it run overnight by itself, and when I checked again it suffered the same results. I re-sized both triggers to over 100 each, and now the battle is happening as it should. Is this intentional and I just missed it in the PDF? Or maybe just a weird coincidence that I experienced?

DOUBLE EDIT:

Tested out Zargabad with as a huge battle in the lower green zone near the river + Shabaz, several choppers tanks etc. Didn't have a single problem on my end, everything played out smoothly.

Edited by stupidwhitekid75

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About Zagrabad - I do not know, what could cause this type of lag on city map. Haven't this map, so can't test it.

About water - indeed. I managed to make HAC not to appoint waypoints on the water, but have not found an effective way to stop him from sending units somewhere behind water (should be to figure not exhaustive for CPU code, that somehow verify if unit can reach its destiny by land. I haven't idea how to achieve something like that). EDIT: In fact, I was hoping that unit sent to place, that is cut off by water, will simply stand without moving, so I put code to remove a waypoint, if unit stands without any move too long. It is obviously not enough...

About objective triggers - its radius or size are irrelevant. Objective even does not need to be a trigger, it can be any object. Only its central point position matters. Hard to tell, what caused described effects, I would have to test a given mission to say something more.

Edited by Rydygier

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You mean detection of dead body? It probably is to be done via command selectBestPlaces. Even will not need much change. I must only consider whether the presence of dead bodies should in some way affect the decisions of the commander ... Separate thread for arrays with classnames? If this addon proves popular enough - why not? I will also add prepared arrays to new versions of HAC.

Hi Rydygier

Many thanks for this - it seems to open up a whole new approach to mission design :)

Played with it a bit over the holiday without logging on again after downloading; I also found the original script demo inactive. Bizarrely, it worked if I also loaded both CBA and the HAC pbo. Your recently posted init line for the commander removed the need for the HAC pbo.

As for detecting dead bodies: GL4 can do that (at least for enemy AI, IIRC it doesn't apply to friendly AIs) but may give you some ideas, perhaps.

BTW, thanks also for FAW - just what I neeed for a DAC3 mission I'm putting together, :yay:

BR

Orcinus

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I also found the original script demo inactive. Bizarrely, it worked if I also loaded both CBA and the HAC pbo. Your recently posted init line for the commander removed the need for the HAC pbo.

Yep. There is nothing strange. Pbo version simply does not require init code, which was lacking in the first version of demo mission. Only script version require this code (nul = [] execVM "RydHQInit.sqf"; ) to start, for pbo test this line should be removed. Currently included demo works with script version just fine.

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I should note that set up my mission so battle takes place inside Zagrabad itself, with both sides advancing into the city, also choppers and AA launchers were present. Game starts to freeze once contact with enemy is made.

BTW: I just saw one of most awesome thing in Arma 2. When I was moving though city with my squad, 2 AH-64's and 2 Vipers flew slowly over me at low attitude. I dont know why, but it looked AWESOME, then they made mincemeat of enemy infantry :D.

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I tried to reproduce similar conditions on Fallujah map. In total, approximately 360 units, helicopters, AA weapons, fighting on the streets of a big city ... First contact occurred only after 20 minutes, but this is understandable and expected on such battlefield. Here everything takes longer, because much longer it will take execution "SAD" order in an urban area. Yet I found no lags or freezings, fps was low, but its normal - my video card is an old scrap, I play in low resolution on minimum settings and I don't have more than 20 fps on maps such Duala and only 10-12 on maps like Chernarus.

So unfortunately, I'm not wiser than I was about this city lags issue... Who wants and has a Fallujah map can try on his own: player is a spectator here, has at its disposal a car, but also teleport - click LPM on the map to change position. Mission is for addon and script versions of HAC. There is small unit counter on ALPHA channel. To avoid RPT error use this tool after both sides HQ init. To play with script version start game without HAC addon and use BRAVO channel to init HAC (of course do not use BRAVO with addon version). You can also switch to other units, but only civilian has teleport ability.

Fallujah mission

I wonder if for someone more these lags will also appear.

Edited by Rydygier

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I will check this out too.

BTW: If you want to kick HAC into high gear from the start, then put two opposing units in sight of each other.

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Is there a version of this which does not require an extra addon (apart from CBA), i. e. put a folder with your scripts into a custom mission and call it from init.sqf or something like that?

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CBA may be required only for auto INIT. However I dont know for sure.

Anyway, I tested out that Fallujah mission and I didnt experience performance issues. I think that my Zagrabad mission was messed up for some reason. I will make new one and see if I have problems, if I do I will upload it here for other to check.

Also, waypoints showing on map problem applies only to "guard" order, move and S&D waypoints dont show up on map.

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Is there a version of this which does not require an extra addon (apart from CBA), i. e. put a folder with your scripts into a custom mission and call it from init.sqf or something like that?

The demo mission is a script version.

Zargabad this map lags anyway, especially in the city. Try it without the commanders calling HAC, and give a combination of s&d and guard waypoints to all the groups, you should see the same lag.

Edited by Katipo66

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