SUBSIM Radio Room Forums


SUBSIM: The Web's #1 BBS for all submarine and naval simulations since 1997

Go Back   SUBSIM Radio Room Forums > Subsims & Naval Games > Wolfpack
Forget password? Reset here

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 07-24-2016, 05:44 AM   #1
Onkel Neal
Born to Run Silent
 
Onkel Neal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 1997
Location: Cougar Trap, Texas
Posts: 17,085
Downloads: 388
Uploads: 195


Default Campaign: A journey through the U-boat War

While the guys work on the game models and code, I'm preparing an outline for the campaign model. I'm going to post here and lay out some ideas, and since many of your are U-boat experts, I invite you to share your thoughts.
__________________
.


It works for me
Onkel Neal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2016, 05:47 AM   #2
Onkel Neal
Born to Run Silent
 
Onkel Neal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 1997
Location: Cougar Trap, Texas
Posts: 17,085
Downloads: 388
Uploads: 195


Default

Our plan for the game is to have three modes of play: skirmish, campaign, and player vs player. Skirmish and campaign are the first objectives, then we will develop a player vs player model that will make sense and provide compelling and engaging MP gameplay. We will come back to PvP at a later date.

Skirmish
Skirmish is merely an instant action convoy/war patrol encounter. Most U-boat missions are essentially: Locate convoy, Intercept convoy, Attack convoy, Evade escorts (re-engage if possible). This is what Doenitz tasked his U-boats with and this is what they sought. In real life, assembling a group of U-boats and locating a convoy could take weeks, and often a U-boat commander would never find a battle. Obviously, this would not work for a simulation, no one wants to simulate the boredom and frustration of empty seas. And when you are talking cooperatively manned subs, by four dudes in real life, even less so. So, the plan is to start a skirmish mission off with the enemy within reasonable range, so the players can possibly intercept and engage within 30 minutes to an hour. It is important to note that we intend to have the missions dynamically generated, so no matter how many times you play a skirmish mission, the inclusion, placement, and course of the enemy will vary. Sometimes you will start off close and in favorable position, sometimes you will have to establish contact and attempt to obtain a favorable firing position without being detected.

So, whenever you want to play a quick game with your friends, you can select a convoy encounter, warship encounter, or random encounter and test your mettle as a U-boat crew.

Campaign
Our campaign is what this thread is about. I want to plan a campaign where you and three of your friends can set up a crew (like a clan in an RPG) in our Steam section and start a career from 1939 August until 1945 June. The missions will historically mirror the real U-boat war like the chapters of a book. I am researching all the phases of the war in order to include as many of the iconic battles and missions as possible. So, feel free to list scenarios and missions with their corresponding dates and locations that you think would make great campaign missions. We are still in the planning phase. Below are some that I have on my list:

Training: U-boat school (can be skipped). A mission in the harbor where you get a chance to practice TDC and torpedo shots with illuminated dummy torpedoes against friendly tugs and coastal ships. Your sonar guy will get some training on how the sonar, radio and enigma works, and your chief will get practice diving the boat, holding at PD, and surfacing.

1939: “My God! So it’s war with England again!” War begins, missions in the North Sea and around the British Isles. You will encounter warships, neutrals, and single cargo ships. You may encounter passenger ships and it will be your task to ID them and determine if you are within orders to sink them. If you sink an Athenia, you and your crew may be subject to disciplinary actions. As the year progresses, you will encounter more British warships trying to enforce a blockade, including RN aircraft carriers (fat juicy targets). You may receive orders to penetrate an enemy harbor, such as Scapa Flow (good luck with that!).

1940: Happy Times. You sight your first convoy. British ships have no radar so your surface raiding tactics at night will bring you glory, as long as you correctly gauge how closely you can approach ships. Weather and moon conditions will have an impact. You may experience occasional torpedo failures, you better have BdU look into it. You may be tasked with taking part in Operation Weserübung, the invasion of Norway, so watch out for waters heavily infested with escorts. After the fall of France, you may be based out of the French port. The Happy Times begin. Your U-boat is a force to be feared as you sink ships by the ton Just be sure not to sink an American, even though they may be trying to sink you.

1941: Happy Times continue, but in March your radioman begins to get an alarming number of radio message from other U-boats that are sinking. Escorts get smarter. First tactical radar sets begin showing up. Operation Bismarck. You get your first taste of wolfpack tactics! Also, your first encounter with a Q-ship. Patrols in the mid Atlantic where Allied aircraft cannot follow.

1942: America in the war, commence Operation Drumbeat. War on tankers. Happy Times are back with easy pickings off the eastern coast of the USA. Refueling operations with Milche Cows. Transit across the Bay of Biscay becomes more hazardous with the unexpected appearance of Wellington bombers and other Allied aircraft equipped with radar and Leigh lights. Metox detectors are quickly installed in all boats. America's defenses tighten up, and patrol zones return to the middle Atlantic. Patrol area shifted to attack Allied landing in North Africa.

1943: Climax. The greatest convoy battles take place with large wolfpacks. Allied radar improves with deadly results for U-boats. Escort hunter/killer groups. Black May. Wanze replaces Metox. Patrols redirected to Freetown and the east coast of Brazil. BOLDs are introduced. Flak boats. Mission to the Med.

1944: Desperation. FAT and GNAT torpedoes, NAXOS are issued to your boat. Snorkel added to your boat. Allied defenses spell the end of the war for U-boats. Escort carriers hound wolfpacks. Orders to attack Allied landing ships in English Channel. Base of operations moved to Norway.

1945: Defeat. Radar installed on your boat. Secret mission. Promise of a new Type XXI electro-boat. Allied homing torpedoes. Shortages. Last patrol.







________________________________________
More coming
__________________
.


It works for me

Last edited by Onkel Neal; 07-24-2016 at 11:11 AM.
Onkel Neal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2016, 07:16 AM   #3
PL_Andrev
Grey Wolf
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 947
Downloads: 85
Uploads: 0
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Onkel Neal View Post
(...)we will develop a player vs player model that will make sense and provide compelling and engaging MP gameplay. We will come back to PvP at a later date.
What does PvP mean?
  • multiple subs hunt ships at convoy,
  • multiple subs hunt himself
  • convoy battle: DD team vs SUB team
  • other (?)
__________________

PL_Andrev is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-25-2016, 09:12 PM   #4
sober
Ace of the deep .
 
sober's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 9,112
Downloads: 895
Uploads: 73


Default

Quoted from Australian newspaper articles .
Sat 19th Dec 1942
Berlin radio now claims that Germany now has uboat tankers .
Uboat tanker mission .
Maybe a version of a Uboat tanker could be modelled .
How fun would it be for 4 people trying to refuel other uboats that turn up ?
Currents modelled , maintain proximity with other uboat via the engine station .
Use radio operator to communicate with other Uboat .
2 people on deck to operate the fuel boom thing .
OK , you mentioned in another thread fuel wont be an issue . What about some players can choose to play in 1 sub and a coop player can choose a milk cow . The milk cow has torps that can be loaded from the milk cow to any other uboat if torp slots are available . The torps are loaded via a boom crane . The boom replaces the deck gun . Maybe a milk cow is just a uboat that has the deck gun replaced by the boom crane . Would be fun to load torps onto another sub . For me a support role would be interesting .


Wed 8th August 1945
Moscow Red Star revealed that a German submarine shelled Red Army posts on Rugen island .
Reported that many small German vessels are still hiding in the Baltic sea .
After shelling a vessel they disappeared into the fog .
Use fog patches as cover in a hit and run mission in the Baltic in 1945 .

Some sort of iceberg run like what was portrayed in SH3 trailer just for fun .

Last edited by sober; 07-27-2016 at 01:31 AM.
sober is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2016, 07:20 AM   #5
Chromatix
Watch
 
Join Date: May 2011
Posts: 26
Downloads: 5
Uploads: 0
Default

Does this confirm that the game will fundamentally be mission-based, rather than open-world patrols?
__________________
In a submarine battle, you can be: on fire, underwater, under fire, & taking on water... simultaneously.
Chromatix is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2016, 10:13 AM   #6
PL_Andrev
Grey Wolf
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 947
Downloads: 85
Uploads: 0
Default

Yeap, no open world.
To avoid boring time of "patrol time" for non-captain players the campaign is planned as set of scenarios. Each scenario will be randomly generated mission based at scenario conditions (available weapons, escort efficiency, wolfpack activity, "surprises" like Q-boats or HK groups).

It looks not so good in first view, but randomly generated missions have sense here (generally at Silent Hunter you met the contact and engine randomly decides what kind of ship / convoy it was). Not sure what happened if "captain" decides to avoid targets / escape mission.
____________________

Proposed missions:
All the best scenarios were described by Neal.
Hope the night surface attack will be more easy / safe / usefull than submerged attack how it is at Silent Hunter series...
__________________


Last edited by PL_Andrev; 07-26-2016 at 12:15 PM.
PL_Andrev is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2016, 02:09 PM   #7
tonyj
Torpedoman
 
Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: london
Posts: 115
Downloads: 72
Uploads: 0
Default

For open world could you not set a course, real life players go about their real daily routine, with automated crew picking up hydrophone/radar/radio contacts and then notify all real players via email/sms when contact made. The boat then shadows automatically from safe distance, players agree to come online at certain time to take over controls and then treat as normal scenario. Would be pretty exciting to know your boat is traveling in real time and not knowing what/when you would encounter the enemy. Also you can retreat and back into automated mode. Something like that anyway.
tonyj is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-26-2016, 04:43 PM   #8
Penguin
Ocean Warrior
 
Penguin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: Rheinische Republik
Posts: 3,403
Downloads: 92
Uploads: 0


Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Onkel Neal View Post
If you sink an Athenia, you and your crew may be subject to disciplinary actions.
This brings me to the idea of some morale- or ethics-based decisions, similar to This War Of Mine.
It doesn't have to be as dramatic as civilian-saving missions inspired by the Laconia, but also smaller stuff, such as:
- Do you want to boost crew morale by playing enemy music while also risking to be scoulded by upper command?
- Do you want to risk to search an abandoned enemy ship for intelligence or even something trivial as fresh food? The latter could also boost crew morale, the former give you a better standing with your superiors, maybe resulting in better equipment or a more experienced crew-
- An enemy plane is sighted, you plan for a crash dive, however your rookie crewmember somehow is tangeled up his harness in the winter garden...

I think this could be a quite interesting addition and an additional immersion factor, especially in multiplayer, when 4 folks have to agree to a decision.
Penguin is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-27-2016, 12:49 AM   #9
Onkel Neal
Born to Run Silent
 
Onkel Neal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 1997
Location: Cougar Trap, Texas
Posts: 17,085
Downloads: 388
Uploads: 195


Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by PL_Andrev View Post
Yeap, no open world.
To avoid boring time of "patrol time" for non-captain players the campaign is planned as set of scenarios. Each scenario will be randomly generated mission based at scenario conditions (available weapons, escort efficiency, wolfpack activity, "surprises" like Q-boats or HK groups).

It looks not so good in first view, but randomly generated missions have sense here (generally at Silent Hunter you met the contact and engine randomly decides what kind of ship / convoy it was). Not sure what happened if "captain" decides to avoid targets / escape mission.
____________________

Proposed missionsHope the night surface attack will be more easy / safe / usefull than submerged attack how it is at Silent Hunter series...
Agreed, the night surface attack is a critical tactical element of U-boat warfare. In the early part of the war before British ships had good radar, the Aces would slip into a convoy on the surface and wreak havoc. Kretscmher was known for this, as was Mohr and others. The trick is to factor in weather, night, and distance into the detection model. I propose that you will have success in early war surface night attacks, but it will always be risky, because just like the real men who did this, you will never know for sure when you will be detected. And if you are detected 2000m away from a hard charging destroyer, you will have problems. In our game, with 4 players, where 3 of them are at the mercy of one player's command decisions...you see where there could be tension? It won't be a simple feat for 4 players to successfully complete a long historical campaign.

I am definitely thinking of adding an Iron Man option where if your crew is sunk, the campaign will end and you will only be able to start with a fresh campaign.


Quote:
Originally Posted by tonyj View Post
For open world could you not set a course, real life players go about their real daily routine, with automated crew picking up hydrophone/radar/radio contacts and then notify all real players via email/sms when contact made. The boat then shadows automatically from safe distance, players agree to come online at certain time to take over controls and then treat as normal scenario. Would be pretty exciting to know your boat is traveling in real time and not knowing what/when you would encounter the enemy. Also you can retreat and back into automated mode. Something like that anyway.
That's a very exciting concept. I like it, but it is too ambitious for our small team. Who knows, if this game is a smash success, I would love to shoot for the stars with a project like this



Quote:
Originally Posted by Penguin View Post
This brings me to the idea of some morale- or ethics-based decisions, similar to This War Of Mine.
It doesn't have to be as dramatic as civilian-saving missions inspired by the Laconia, but also smaller stuff, such as:
- Do you want to boost crew morale by playing enemy music while also risking to be scoulded by upper command?
- Do you want to risk to search an abandoned enemy ship for intelligence or even something trivial as fresh food? The latter could also boost crew morale, the former give you a better standing with your superiors, maybe resulting in better equipment or a more experienced crew-
- An enemy plane is sighted, you plan for a crash dive, however your rookie crewmember somehow is tangeled up his harness in the winter garden...

I think this could be a quite interesting addition and an additional immersion factor, especially in multiplayer, when 4 folks have to agree to a decision.
Hey, have you been peeking in my game journal?

Of course, with 4 human players, the radio player could put on a record, and his Captain may decide that is inappropriate, but who knows if that will affect morale of the real guys.... This War of Mine (great game, btw) has AI characters who are affected by events and actions. Our game is guys like you and me.

One thing I am sure that will affect morale of the real human players, is missions that are scripted, where everything happens the same way--same ships appear in the same place, going the same speed and course...I really want to eliminate that morale killer. Oscar assures me he can add a great deal of variability to ship placement, inclusion, and orders. That is really exciting. When you replay a mission, you will be in the same time period and the tech boundaries will remain the same (of course), but you will still be sailing into the unknown. You will have a reasonable chance of engaging the enemy (it will vary), but you will still need to locate him, determine what he is (convoy, single merchant, hunter/killer group, ???) and plot a smart intercept course to set up a firing solution.

Hey, don't laugh but we did decide that when the boat crash dives, the Captain MUST close the conning tower hatch or the boat will flood.
__________________
.


It works for me
Onkel Neal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-27-2016, 01:12 AM   #10
Aktungbby
Gefallen Engel U-666
 
Aktungbby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: where I'm at presently
Posts: 13,277
Downloads: 18
Uploads: 0


Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Onkel Neal View Post
Hey, don't laugh but we did decide that when the boat crash dives, the Captain MUST close the conning tower hatch or the boat will flood.
OH I wonder where that came from! http://www.subsim.com/radioroom/showthread.php?p=2421625#post2421625
Quote:
56. The Commander is personally responsible for opening and closing the conning tower hatch. After opening or closing the Commander notifies the boat: Commander: "Conning tower hatch is open or closed".
http://www.uboatarchive.net/Diving/DivingRegulations.htm
__________________
"Only two things are infinite: The Universe and human stupidity; And I'm not too sure about the Universe..." Philip K. Dick
Aktungbby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-27-2016, 03:09 AM   #11
PL_Andrev
Grey Wolf
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Posts: 947
Downloads: 85
Uploads: 0
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Onkel Neal View Post
Hey, don't laugh but we did decide that when the boat crash dives, the Captain MUST close the conning tower hatch or the boat will flood.
The closing hatch is good idea, but l'm not sure 'captain responsibily' is the best idea.
What happened if someone else is on the deck? What happened when mission is failed due engineer did not dive on time (because hatch was still opened)?

The better idea is flooding effect when open hatch is under water level (after that sub cannot be easy trimmed due additional weight of water inside) plus each player on the deck when sub is diving is kicked-off from mission.
__________________

PL_Andrev is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-27-2016, 07:38 AM   #12
Sailor Steve
Jammin' Again
 
Sailor Steve's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: High in the mountains of Utah
Posts: 49,689
Downloads: 602
Uploads: 248


Default

A simple fact on the hatch question: What the Americans called the "Christmas Tree", due to US lights being red and green. On U-boats the portal lights are red and white, but the point is that there is a light for the conning tower hatch, as well as engine intake ports and some others, and the LI (Chief) will not give the order to dive until all the lights are white.

The Watch Duty Officer will always be the last man down, and he will close the hatch behind him. If the captain is on the bridge then he will take that responsibility.

One of the problems with SH5 was the requirement for the player to go down the hatch manually and close it behind him, which didn't always work properly. My solution for this would be a simple visual routine. When you click "Dive" or "Crash Dive" you would see the watch crew go down the hatch, then see yourself go down and see the hatch close behind you. No extra tasks to do what you would do automatically.
__________________
"Perhaps it is a universal truth that the loss of liberty at home is to be charged to provisions against danger, real or pretended, from abroad.”
—James Madison


Sailor Steve is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-28-2016, 04:04 PM   #13
cmdr750
Nub
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Posts: 3
Downloads: 71
Uploads: 0
Default

isn`t it a better idea to implement a "big campaign" rather than separated missions and work with time compression ?

so, you can have relatively quick action with your buddies but you can also have these strategic decissions like "where are the convoy routes, where are the air gaps, where can i go with my fuel, ect..."

that also will solve the problems with the consumables like battery and O2, mentionted in the other threat. You can make them realistic, but do not have to wait or have some "boring" time.
cmdr750 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 07-28-2016, 04:48 PM   #14
sober
Ace of the deep .
 
sober's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 9,112
Downloads: 895
Uploads: 73


Default

What about enemy ships have some point on them that you can retrieve documents/ammo etc . As first person if the engine and lookout can manoeuvre your sub close to the enemy boat/sub you can walk over to the enemy boat/sub . From there you can scout the enemy boat/sub for the documents/ammo . You can radio in the documents and that will give you more intelligence . Once you are off the sub you should be able to control the enemy boat/sub and use that to help your teammates . Maybe 2 players want to board another ship/sub etc . Battlefield etc works on this principle . Why not this game .
sober is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 08-01-2016, 02:41 PM   #15
keysersoze
Ensign
 
Join Date: Feb 2012
Location: USA
Posts: 226
Downloads: 318
Uploads: 0
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Onkel Neal View Post
I am researching all the phases of the war in order to include as many of the iconic battles and missions as possible. So, feel free to list scenarios and missions with their corresponding dates and locations that you think would make great campaign missions.
In case this is of some assistance, here is a spreadsheet I put together with 111 "special missions" U-boats conducted throughout the war. They might add some real flavor to the game.

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets...it?usp=sharing
keysersoze is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 10:30 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.4
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright © 1995- 2018 Subsim