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11 hours ago, pierremgi said:

Hard work on prospect but for sure, Ares is right. First of all, write a tree view of your campaign.

It is already in the works.

 

Currently I´m writing the part about the basic training in the army so it would be helpful if some german soldiers could talk about the parts that would be interesting for learning the mechanics of the game (like shooting drills) or something that would be useful later in the campaign or in the offline life (like navigating with compass and map or only with the starmap).

I read on the official Bundeswehr website about some of the parts that are taught but it is very brought...

Also if veterans from other militaries or even @A. Arescould talk about their experiences would be interesting.

 

2 hours ago, JohnKalo said:

Last but not least you can start writing the story and post it here with a spoiler warning if that is what is keeping you. So as for suggestions and such.

I will do that when I have expanded it a littlebit more. By now it is basically what I have wrote in the spoiler on top with some clarifications...

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1 hour ago, padi said:

Also if veterans from other militaries or even @A. Arescould talk about their experiences would be interesting.

@padi mate, we can talk if you want but keep in mind that I haven't been deployed in a combat zone. I can help you with the training part (I have served as a drill sergeant and 2nd in command in a training company)! Although keep in mind that there are many videos that you can take some ideas about training and at least basic training is pretty common in most military formations!

 

But still, I am here for whatever you may need me!

 

You can reach me here:

 

Discord: A. Ares#3160

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Happened to read this last night on youTube and thought it was inspirational:

Spoiler

Mountain Mike

Fun story: When I was in the Marines we did a joint exercise with 3rd recon and a whole MEU. I got attached to 1/8 as a supplemental rifleman and then a machine-gunner. I'm an avid hunter and have been to a lot of really neat training that most super POGs like me didn't normally go to (Being a training NCO for the squadron really had its perks, JWTC, shoot-houses and SERE). I used all of this knowledge that I'd gained over the years to make myself blend into some bushed and look like a pile of wood-chips and had a squad of 1/3 infantrymen step over me thinking they were being super covert while infiltrating our "airfield". Once they were out of visual range I just whipped out my cell phone(we were pretty much on a jungle beach in the middle of Kin in Oki, we had reception) and texted my buddy in the Ops-center and told them we had a squad coming in from <insert direction here>, exactly how many there were, what weapons they had, what their uniforms and equipment looked like, and when to expect them. That squad got ambushed and captured, which led us to "interrogate" them and find their jack-shack(ops-center or porto-john depending on the context).

 

We thought we had this op in the bag and that was going to give us a win for the exercise. At about 0300ish I was on firewatch manning an M2 on a gun truck on the perimeter of our "airfield" when we started getting lit up by simulated artillery, mortars, and flares and at least 15 LAV's and some tracks came ashore on the beach and just lit us up with smoke and all sorts of stuff. Apparently, capturing an entire squad was a bad call and the "bad guys" realized they'd been compromised and would be forced to either retreat or assault, and the opted for the latter. I got captured and most of my unit "died".

 

I single handedly got my entire squadron murdered and got myself locked up on an LHD on an exercise because I thought I was a bad-ass. Fun times.

 

Lots of cool stuff here too:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLorCiYziMQ-j08Z5o6U-0g

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC61E4bFNYEsBknfJLWaup4Q

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Some thoughts about your story and on designing missions and campaigns. Your basic story idea is nice, but moreof a backdrop for the action or a "frame". Keep in mind that most of the time the player is actually playing a mission and therefore you should spend the most work on fleshing out the 'story' that is actually happening in the missions. It's really nice to have a connecting story arc you can return to in-between them though and yours should work good enough for that, i think. Just keep it really simple and short, so the player can still remember the last cutscene/dialogue/whatever.

Below you'll find a very basic structure with a very standard character setup to perhaps have you excited for storytelling (as i interprete it - there is way better advice out there, for sure) and perhaps wanting to know more. 🙂


INTRODUCTION
 

Spoiler

 

You may want to make sure that the players are hooked all the time and do constantly want to "know more". There can be (and should be) moments of relieve, where the players can just roam and do their thing, but most of the time there should be the need to actually ACT. You may want to 'chase' the player through the story - Not necessarily by deploying timed bombs or similar - but by constantly arising interest. Every scene/every part of the mission should have a purpose: If it does not produce interest, it is not needed.

The most compelling stories are about conflict and follow a Three-Act-Structure. Ideally, the players' characters, their enemies, as well as the environments where they're competing against each other in, are interesting, too. These standards have been used for many, many, many movies/games/books and are a good start.

 

 

 

THE CHARACTERS & THEIR ENEMIES

 

Spoiler

 

The main protagonist is your aspiring general - You may call him George. He is the center of the story and you should create the other characters based on him.
Like all interesting characters in a story, the George you start the campaign with should not be the same George at the end of it. Let us break this down.
George is a promising, new leader of a special forces team and already has a wife & kids.
During one of his missions he shoots young combatants that try to kill him, but feels guilty about it afterwards - Why is that? You could go for that "We all know that he is a Good-Guy-Approach" and just summon a sand storm for example, so he does not see that he is actually killing kids, but this sounds too cliché for me - It should be a REAL mistake.
At the end he dies in the arms of his family, after finally telling the truth about this horrendous incident and eventually freeing himself from the guilt he feels.

 

Sounds like a Drama to me, does it? The central conflict of this story is basically the injustice of George having a long life and family (although carrying a heavy burden) after killing presumably innocent kids - It's likely that they did not really have a chance to choose what to do at that age. It's about getting away with murder versus getting the highest punishment possible without doing anything wrong. This stuff feels really uncomfortable and you should make sure that the player still wants to participate in this ..
Most serious movie dramas do not care about that, as they're primarily interested in dissecting human characters and their relationships, but you want to do an easily digestible action drama campaign that keeps the player on his toes without excessive use of cutscenes or dialogue.

 

To achieve that you may basically mirror the outer story frame in the missions. So you do have the old general near his death and his younger selfs in the missions. His family could be replaced with the player team in combat, whereas his son could be one of the unlucky guys he kills. To add a bit more spice you may introduce someone who is a Mentor to him - This trope has been popular since ancient times and i think, for a reason. There is no need for a classic Archenemy in this campaign draft, as i think the real arch enemy is George himself: Will he win the fight against his bad side or will he just fade away without salvation?

 

 


THE STORY
 

Spoiler


For the sake of simplicity you should sketch a campaign example with three missions. Three Acts, Three missions, right?
It will be based on your story frame and should only use a minimum of cutscenes. This is getting more complex with more content.


Act One (Mission 1 of 3) - Introduction & Inciting Incident

During this mission, the player is introduced to the character he is playing, the general mood (Drama!), as well as the world he is playing in.
It ends with the inciting incident that really starts the story and defines the goal of the campaign. There is no turning back possible after this point.


Act Two (Mission 2 of 3) - The long, rocky road to Salvation

The player meets different obstacles that increase in difficulty. Every step the player takes traps him even more into having to win.
After that a first culmination occurs, which ends in a defeat in our case (Drama!). During sub-plots (Side missions?) we learn more about the main protagonist and his mentor. The act ends with the main conflict/the final battle at the horizon.


Act Three (Mission 3 of 3) - Twist & Resolution

In this set-up the final battle may start with Act Three and is fought relentlessly until the victory seems to be clear. Suddenly, in an unfortunate twist, all that is at stake, is at risk. The player has given all he could and there is only one option left. He tries hard, but fails at last. Though it looks like this means there will be no salvation for our protagonist, the final resolution is a lot more forgiving and leads him to the conclusion that he did all he could, and therefore shouldn't feel guilty. The new Status-Quo is then presented in the epilogue.

 


I think i'll do an example script with comments during the next days 🙂
In the meantime you may want to take a little read here

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On 2/7/2021 at 1:18 AM, RCA3 said:

Happened to read this last night on youTube and thought it was inspirational:

  Reveal hidden contents

Mountain Mike

Fun story: When I was in the Marines we did a joint exercise with 3rd recon and a whole MEU. I got attached to 1/8 as a supplemental rifleman and then a machine-gunner. I'm an avid hunter and have been to a lot of really neat training that most super POGs like me didn't normally go to (Being a training NCO for the squadron really had its perks, JWTC, shoot-houses and SERE). I used all of this knowledge that I'd gained over the years to make myself blend into some bushed and look like a pile of wood-chips and had a squad of 1/3 infantrymen step over me thinking they were being super covert while infiltrating our "airfield". Once they were out of visual range I just whipped out my cell phone(we were pretty much on a jungle beach in the middle of Kin in Oki, we had reception) and texted my buddy in the Ops-center and told them we had a squad coming in from <insert direction here>, exactly how many there were, what weapons they had, what their uniforms and equipment looked like, and when to expect them. That squad got ambushed and captured, which led us to "interrogate" them and find their jack-shack(ops-center or porto-john depending on the context).

 

We thought we had this op in the bag and that was going to give us a win for the exercise. At about 0300ish I was on firewatch manning an M2 on a gun truck on the perimeter of our "airfield" when we started getting lit up by simulated artillery, mortars, and flares and at least 15 LAV's and some tracks came ashore on the beach and just lit us up with smoke and all sorts of stuff. Apparently, capturing an entire squad was a bad call and the "bad guys" realized they'd been compromised and would be forced to either retreat or assault, and the opted for the latter. I got captured and most of my unit "died".

 

I single handedly got my entire squadron murdered and got myself locked up on an LHD on an exercise because I thought I was a bad-ass. Fun times.

 

Lots of cool stuff here too:

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCLorCiYziMQ-j08Z5o6U-0g

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC61E4bFNYEsBknfJLWaup4Q

Thanks for that quote and the links.

i already knew them, but not the quote.

the links might be useful👍🏻

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On 2/8/2021 at 12:16 AM, poolpunk said:

Some thoughts about your story and on designing missions and campaigns. Your basic story idea is nice, but moreof a backdrop for the action or a "frame". Keep in mind that most of the time the player is actually playing a mission and therefore you should spend the most work on fleshing out the 'story' that is actually happening in the missions. It's really nice to have a connecting story arc you can return to in-between them though and yours should work good enough for that, i think. Just keep it really simple and short, so the player can still remember the last cutscene/dialogue/whatever.

Below you'll find a very basic structure with a very standard character setup to perhaps have you excited for storytelling (as i interprete it - there is way better advice out there, for sure) and perhaps wanting to know more. 🙂


INTRODUCTION
 

  Hide contents

 

You may want to make sure that the players are hooked all the time and do constantly want to "know more". There can be (and should be) moments of relieve, where the players can just roam and do their thing, but most of the time there should be the need to actually ACT. You may want to 'chase' the player through the story - Not necessarily by deploying timed bombs or similar - but by constantly arising interest. Every scene/every part of the mission should have a purpose: If it does not produce interest, it is not needed.

The most compelling stories are about conflict and follow a Three-Act-Structure. Ideally, the players' characters, their enemies, as well as the environments where they're competing against each other in, are interesting, too. These standards have been used for many, many, many movies/games/books and are a good start.

 

 

 

THE CHARACTERS & THEIR ENEMIES

 

  Hide contents

 

The main protagonist is your aspiring general - You may call him George. He is the center of the story and you should create the other characters based on him.
Like all interesting characters in a story, the George you start the campaign with should not be the same George at the end of it. Let us break this down.
George is a promising, new leader of a special forces team and already has a wife & kids.
During one of his missions he shoots young combatants that try to kill him, but feels guilty about it afterwards - Why is that? You could go for that "We all know that he is a Good-Guy-Approach" and just summon a sand storm for example, so he does not see that he is actually killing kids, but this sounds too cliché for me - It should be a REAL mistake.
At the end he dies in the arms of his family, after finally telling the truth about this horrendous incident and eventually freeing himself from the guilt he feels.

 

Sounds like a Drama to me, does it? The central conflict of this story is basically the injustice of George having a long life and family (although carrying a heavy burden) after killing presumably innocent kids - It's likely that they did not really have a chance to choose what to do at that age. It's about getting away with murder versus getting the highest punishment possible without doing anything wrong. This stuff feels really uncomfortable and you should make sure that the player still wants to participate in this ..
Most serious movie dramas do not care about that, as they're primarily interested in dissecting human characters and their relationships, but you want to do an easily digestible action drama campaign that keeps the player on his toes without excessive use of cutscenes or dialogue.

 

To achieve that you may basically mirror the outer story frame in the missions. So you do have the old general near his death and his younger selfs in the missions. His family could be replaced with the player team in combat, whereas his son could be one of the unlucky guys he kills. To add a bit more spice you may introduce someone who is a Mentor to him - This trope has been popular since ancient times and i think, for a reason. There is no need for a classic Archenemy in this campaign draft, as i think the real arch enemy is George himself: Will he win the fight against his bad side or will he just fade away without salvation?

 

 


THE STORY
 

  Hide contents

 

For the sake of simplicity you should sketch a campaign example with three missions. Three Acts, Three missions, right?
It will be based on your story frame and should only use a minimum of cutscenes. This is getting more complex with more content.


Act One (Mission 1 of 3) - Introduction & Inciting Incident

During this mission, the player is introduced to the character he is playing, the general mood (Drama!), as well as the world he is playing in.
It ends with the inciting incident that really starts the story and defines the goal of the campaign. There is no turning back possible after this point.


Act Two (Mission 2 of 3) - The long, rocky road to Salvation

The player meets different obstacles that increase in difficulty. Every step the player takes traps him even more into having to win.
After that a first culmination occurs, which ends in a defeat in our case (Drama!). During sub-plots (Side missions?) we learn more about the main protagonist and his mentor. The act ends with the main conflict/the final battle at the horizon.


Act Three (Mission 3 of 3) - Twist & Resolution

In this set-up the final battle may start with Act Three and is fought relentlessly until the victory seems to be clear. Suddenly, in an unfortunate twist, all that is at stake, is at risk. The player has given all he could and there is only one option left. He tries hard, but fails at last. Though it looks like this means there will be no salvation for our protagonist, the final resolution is a lot more forgiving and leads him to the conclusion that he did all he could, and therefore shouldn't feel guilty. The new Status-Quo is then presented in the epilogue.

 


I think i'll do an example script with comments during the next days 🙂
In the meantime you may want to take a little read here

 

Thank you for that, for some reason I didn´t see that yesterday.

 

Not knowing about that approach I continued to write the script.

Feedback is as always welcome.

I translated it online because I write it in german so if something is hard to understand just ask.

It also isn´t finished by now...

 

Spoiler

The main protagonist is a general who is old and whose condition is deteriorating. He will probably die in a short time.
He calls his family to him because he wants to tell them about an action he did during the war that haunts him to this day.
He then tells them about his life in the military (the player can act out his memories).
He drives to the base, looking forward to duty and a secure job on the drive, and already sees himself giving orders to subordinates as a general.
Planning the training
After basic training, it's on to mission preparation as the player's unit is deployed to Afghanistan. Insert this still here.
In Afghanistan, the player's unit replaces a German unit that is being redeployed back to Germany. In the camp where the unit is stationed, the player also gets to talk to American soldiers who report on their battles for the Restrepo outpost in the Korengal Valley. The reports are also playable.
These reports start out with a unit finding an outpost near where a soldier was shot and calling it OP Restrepo. This is permanently attacked and the soldiers do not fight for any higher objectives, but only for their own survival.
Sometimes the units also conduct patrols to talk to the mayor of the nearby village and clear the road passing near the outpost from booby traps.
The soldiers are completely exhausted after a short time and are only looking forward to returning home.
Back at the German unit in Afghanistan.
The unit conducts patrols in the area to find and defuse booby traps on the roads. Furthermore, once a week a patrol to the mayor of the nearby village to talk to him about how to reduce the insurgent threat or improve life in the village to reduce support for the insurgents.
Furthermore, practice shootings take place together with the Americans and if the shooting performance with the American weapons is good enough, the Army Marksmanship Qualification Badge can be awarded.
In the camp, the player talks to a German soldier who was involved in an extremely intense ambush. The latter tells him how the German soldiers were surrounded in the village and had to fight for their survival for hours. Bombing raids were not authorized because of the rules of engagement, so the unit had to hold out until the QRF fought its way to them. On the way back to base, a vehicle was blown up, resulting in more casualties.
Change of perspective to an Afghan suicide bomber on his way to carry out an attack. He attacks an Afghan police station.

The player's unit is ordered to support and arrives just before the second suicide bomber, who blows himself up near the Germans.
Then, as a third wave, insurgents still arrive and attack the police station.
The player excels in this battle with extraordinary courage.
Back at the camp, a few more patrols are conducted.
Some time later, the player is summoned to the site commander, who informs him that he has been nominated for the KSK and also accepted there for the aptitude test.
He travels to the aptitude test, passes it, goes through the training and is transferred to one of the operational units.
There he participates in several foreign missions over many years.
For example, in hostage rescues, CSA The player's unit is ordered to provide support and arrives just before the second suicide bomber blows himself up near the Germans.
Subsequently, insurgents still arrive as the third wave, attacking the police station.
The player excels in this battle with extraordinary courage.
Back at the camp, a few more patrols are conducted.
Some time later, the player is summoned to the site commander, who informs him that he has been nominated for the KSK and also accepted there for the aptitude test.
He travels to the aptitude test, passes it, goes through the training and is transferred to one of the operational units.
There he participates in several foreign missions over many years.
For example, hostage rescues, CSAR or protecting an ambassador or embassy.
The player is increasingly bothered by the fact that he cannot talk to his family about what he is doing, but has to maintain strict secrecy.
In one mission, the team protects an ambassador. In the first sub-mission, a two-man team accompanies the ambassador on a meeting with a local, where he is supposed to get new information about the insurgents' planned actions. After returning to the embassy, the team rests.
Suddenly, the aggression outside the embassy increases and the rest of the team, which had been waiting at the airport, is ordered to the embassy. Since it is too dangerous to fly in because of machine guns mounted in front of the building, the unit has to work its way through the streets to the embassy, but does not encounter any enemies.
Being near the embassy the embassy, the aggression in front of it continues to increase and suddenly shots are fired.
The subunit arrives at the embassy shortly after and immediately starts defending the compound.
During the engagement, some enemies make it onto the compound, but are quickly eliminated.
An extraction by helicopter is planned but discarded as the insurgents are equipped with RPGs. During the battle, the ambassador enforces going back to the embassy building to get secret documents from the safe that could bring peace to the country.
In the process, the building he is in is hit by an RPG and he is mortally wounded.

 

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Hi,

I have another question, this time more specific to the editing part.

When I create a conversation I currently do that with this vanilla Conversation system like the manual conversation example.

Do you guys have other recommendations how I could better create conversations or is that the best way?

 

@poolpunkI just saw that my answer to your text is hidden for some reason.

Hopefully they unhide it fast.

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In the last weeks I planned the general layout of the campaign, detail planned the first and second chapter of the campaign and started to build it.

I found out that it works best for me when I plan about 75% in advance (general flow of the mission and cutscenes) and plan the remaining 25% on the fly.

 

I've been thinking about this rough campaign course:

Spoiler

Grandpa calls player and asks him to come to Tanoa, he wants to tell him something from his military past.

Grandpa tells about his life

 

Start at home in West Germany not far from the border, the player is drafted for basic training

Player goes through basic training

 

Conflict with the NVA

 

Participation in KFOR mission in Kosovo

 

Participation in ISAF mission in Afghanistan

 

Transfer to KSK
Training there
Missions with the KSK

A defining moment when the player breaks out of captivity at night and kills youths who have been hunting him down.

Back to the start and end of the campaign

 

The part in the current time where the grandpa calls the player is already created technically  but for now lacks atmosphere because I wanted to have it work first and then add atmospheric things.

There is only one mini mission missing, which is the bridge between the current time and the past.

 

The second part (Start at home in West Germany not far from the border, the player is drafted for basic training and Player goes through basic training) is already planned out:

Spoiler

The player works in the administration of the mining company in Grasleben and also lives in Grasleben.
One day, he receives his draft notice for the German Armed Forces for the next month.
He receives this letter from his father, who has emptied the mailbox.
The player is looking forward to a career in the Bundeswehr and is not afraid for his life, because there is peace and an attack would cause a nuclear holocaust, that would be unwinnable. Also, he is being drafted into the Bundeswehr and not the Bundesgrenzschutz, so he is not doing border duty.
His father then recalls that he thought the same thing in 1937 and wanted to make a career in the Wehrmacht, but then the war broke out.
The player, however, remains convinced that there will be no war.
A few days later, shortly before work ends, the radio reports an incident at the border in which a fugitive from the DDR had just passed the border fence after crossing the death strip, only to be shot by border troops just meters from West German territory. The player can play this.
The player walks home, takes his bicycle and rides again to the border between Grasleben and Weferlingen. There he hopes for the end of the border so that he can meet up with his old friends from the East again. He also thinks about what it would be like if he were in the Bundeswehr, the East attacked and he had to shoot at Germans. In the worst case scenario, his friends would be doing duty on the other side and he would have to shoot at them. He quickly wipes the thoughts aside, as this is very unlikely.
The next day, he takes a bus to the barracks near Mariental-Horst. There, the player is suited up, gets to know his roommates and goes through basic training. The sections to be played out of this include shooting, obstacle course and navigation in the field using only a map and compass.
At the end of this section follows the swearing in of the soldiers, which is also attended by their families.

 

I´m enhancing the immersion parallel to the creation of the missions to mix up the work and variety it to prevent loss of interest due to being annoyed.

 

I would also finish creating parts one and two (as part one are 2 complete missions I have both workflows together) and when they are finished I will create the remaining parts one by one to not have everything begun and nothing finished...

 

Questions:

 

Do you guys like the general direction of the campaign?

I would be happy to have help with creating missions, are you interested?

Also if somebody is good at creating an immersive environment I would be very happy to have your help.

Are there mods that have house interior like kitchen or bathroom stuff to design the houses realistically as it always annoyed me that the vanilla houses had no bathrooms?

 

I hope you guys like it, I will continue the (sadly slow) work on it and if you have advice I would also be happy to incorporate it.

 

Greetings

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Due to a hardware crash all mission files are gone, so I need to start all over again...

But with the knowledge of the first try I´m confident that I will be able to remake the lost missions quickly...

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