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Old 04-23-2018, 09:40 AM   #1
GoldenRivet
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Default Where Cold Waters Drops the Ball

I love killerfish games, and on the whole i have enjoyed playing cold waters. huge fan of Atlantic Fleet.

but IMHO, Cold Waters loses a lot of its playability in the fact that largely, it is a torpedo dodging simulator.

Where i have always been a fan of Subsims is in the cat and mouse element of the game, sneaking around, avoiding detection, being found, throwing them off the trail and repeating the process.

It seems Cold Waters is a constant and repetitive case of 1. Spawn 2. Detect the enemy 3. Enemy detects you 4. everyone fills the sea with torpedoes and we all run for our lives

initially, i chocked it up to my own experience level, rookie mistakes getting me detected etc.

but then i realized, more often than not... I am being detected within 30 seconds of spawning out.

"launch transient bearing 340°" is something that is then repeated on the order of a dozen times, and i find myself spending the next ten minutes of play time desperately maneuvering to avoid a gambit of deadly enemy weapons, while trying to slow my speed enough during this twisting, turning, diving and ascending melee so i can fire off a single blind snapshot in the direction of my enemy.

now bear in mind, Im no casual subsimmer. I've experienced the mechanics of subsims good and bad since these games were barely a 2D three color interface, so i am no stranger to low aspect ratio, thermal layers, sound propagation etc. and, in Cold Waters, i feel that i have figured out pretty well how to "steer" my torpedoes to places afar before turning them in on surface groups to "trick" them into thinking the shot was fired from over there instead of over here.

but i find that often, with Cold Waters, I barely have time to issue my first orders after spawning before active sonar bombards me from 6 different directions, and weapons of every caliber are brought to bear on my position with stunning accuracy.

and dont get me started on airplanes. I could be near the bottom at 1800 ft deep, ultra quiet, 1 knot ahead creep speed... depth charge, right down the hatch

If cold waters is even 10% a reflection of the reality of modern submarine warfare... i contend that when WWIII opens up, the naval element will be decided in a matter of 60 minutes or less, globally.

after some time away from home for work, i fired it up last night...

then i said to my wife "Now i remember why i stopped playing this game"
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Old 04-23-2018, 10:13 AM   #2
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I hear you,....but have you tried the latest Beta?

seems to be a lot easier to avoid detection in the new china campaign and even going back to the 1968 campaign I noticed an improvement.
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Old 04-23-2018, 10:47 AM   #3
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Well i thought this had been solved when I opted into the beta a some months back, but i had to leave town for an extended period, when i got back i opted out of the beta because i had heard through the grapevine that there was a seawolf class in the latest update, and for some reason Steam was not updating Cold Waters while opted into beta.

I disabled Beta and it updated immediately.

when i was originally in the beta it did seem harder to be detected, and i noticed a huge drop in the "torpedo spam"

but today i played "Junks on Parade", fired an ADCAP way off away from the surface group, then turned it toward them, initially they fired at the direction the torpedo activated from which was nowhere close to me, so i thought i had it ironed out. Sank an escort, repeated the process, but this time i ended up with torpedoes of every shape and size falling into the sea literally right above my conning tower. (7 in total) i mean... right on top of me. not 1000 yards in one direction or another, i mean these guys were sinking a hole in one from 20K yards away, and they were doing it consistently, which tells me they had to have A) known exactly where my sub was located and B) had a 100% accurate firing solution on me at all times

and the waters here arent 180-200 ft deep which leaves NO room for outmaneuvering enemy torpedoes. So the minute you are detected you best be preparing your own eulogy. We all know, even as WW1 Subsim skippers, never go into shallow waters. (that phrase has been said a million and one times in the Silent Hunter III IV and V threads alone) the risk of taking your multi billion dollar submarine into these areas would far outweigh any potential strategic benefit in doing so. It would be like wearing snow cammo in the middle of a barren desert devoid of all cover while trying to sneak up on 5 armed men while yourself carrying only a knife. foolish

torpedo spam is something Cold Waters has never been able to address.

I dunno, maybe if a surface group escorting high value merchants or high value warships would risk it all and fill the immediate area with torpedoes? im not familiar with SOP in this regard. Seems that the risk of collateral damage would be *extreme* in real life.

and often, there is a ton of Collateral damage in Cold Waters.

"Stalking the Red Bear" - all i have to do is twitch, and every enemy sub on the map releases every tube they have. i immediately spawn into a literal sea of active sonar pings. I just laugh and wait... i guarantee half the group will be sunk by friendly fire. most often the result is them sinking their own Typhoon they are supposed to be protecting I have won this mission MANY times by doing nothing more than cruising around at flank speed - not a single shot fired.

I cannot get behind the AI and torpedo spam culture of this game. it takes so much away from the realism and fun of play its unreal
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Old 04-23-2018, 11:00 AM   #4
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Agreed...they need to shoot for something halfway between subcommand and what cold waters is. Make it more about the hunt rather than evasion. Give us sonar stations to work from.
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Old 04-23-2018, 11:02 AM   #5
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I've been told from submariners that saturating the area with fire is about what they expected from a surface group that has trouble detecting the submarine to begin with. And it's not that different from a WW2 escort screen saturating your position with depth charge barrages.

During the Cold War the homing torpedoes were considered to have such low PK that standard doctrine was to use a nuclear tipped depth bomb.

The aircraft have passive and active sonobouys as well as MAD. They can drop a field of passive bouys and you will not be aware that you've been counterdetected until they drop a torpedo on you. Remember that you have to perform TMA while the surface group only needs two good bearings with enough geographical separation to get an instant fix on your position, courtesy of datalinks.

Consider Fleet Command where often the first indication of a submarine is torpedoes coming out of nowhere, and so the reaction is to send what helicopters and aircraft you have to drop sonobouys in the direction of the reciprocal bearing. The Cold Waters AI does the same. When it detects incoming weapons, it estimates a distance where it thinks they originated from, then brackets that area with missiles or fire a salvo down the reciprocal bearing. It is entirely possible to counter this behavior by doglegging your own torpedoes, and shoot from 15-20.000 yards.

If you ever played Fast Attack, there are several scenarios in that sim where aircraft will drop large numbers of airdropped torpedoes on your position.

To counter aircraft, you can use the MOSS decoys as a contact breaker.
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Old 04-23-2018, 11:16 AM   #6
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Its a consistency issue with the AI.

Went back and repeated my tactic on Junks on Parade.

obliterated their surface group and this time they never knew what hit them

never even put a torpedo within miles of me.

doubt they could have detected salt in the water.

i did nothing differently than i did in the first run. so what gives?

why is it that in two virtually identical engagements, the enemy AI is flawless and super-saturates my area with torpedoes and depth charges, and in the next i take out their entire fleet without so much as a glance in my direction?

EDIT:

i understand that AI is probably the hardest thing to simulate and get ironed out in any game, its just hard to replicate human behavior in a simulator, let alone the human behavior of a whole crew
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Old 04-23-2018, 11:19 AM   #7
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I think a lot comes down to being detected early by MPA or helicopters. Sometimes you just have bad luck. The single missions have a nasty tendency of spawning too close to the enemies. Try using the close-to button instead.
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Old 04-23-2018, 11:35 AM   #8
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dont anybody get me wrong.

Cold Waters is fun. This is my only complaint about an otherwise excellent game.

If you get a good starting position you'll rock and roll, but it only takes one out of place parameter or bad shot and your arse is grass and the enemy is the lawn mower
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Old 04-23-2018, 11:42 AM   #9
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In the campaign missions you can usually choose where to engage the enemy, which makes a huge difference. The single missions are much more randomly generated for variety - there are no prescripted positions or parameters like in DW or Silent Hunter. The only exception being the land strikes and insertions.
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Old 04-23-2018, 07:03 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GoldenRivet View Post
"Stalking the Red Bear" - all i have to do is twitch, and every enemy sub on the map releases every tube they have. i immediately spawn into a literal sea of active sonar pings. I just laugh and wait... i guarantee half the group will be sunk by friendly fire. most often the result is them sinking their own Typhoon they are supposed to be protecting I have won this mission MANY times by doing nothing more than cruising around at flank speed - not a single shot fired.
Are you kidding?

*tries it*

OK, that was hilarious. My skipper is probably going to receive everys single military accounting heroism medal ever stamped for this. Two Sierra, one Victor III and one Typhoon at zero cost for the taxpayer. This feels dirty.
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Old 04-24-2018, 09:01 PM   #11
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Well, i have played several missions in the campaign, and i will admit, i have had much better luck at attack and evasion in the campaign than the single missions.

unfortunate for me that most of the time i have to play on the PC anymore is limited to a span of minutes rather than hours, so single missions are generally where i spend most of my time.

but - i did find some time this afternoon to run through a few campaign missions, and i would say that most of the time... they had no clue where i was or only eventually located me with a wide margin of accuracy and forced me to cat and mouse away.
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Old 04-25-2018, 01:15 PM   #12
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The campaign autosaves between encounters so don't feel afraid of taking it on.
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Old 04-26-2018, 10:43 AM   #13
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so after spending sometimes with the China campaign in version 1.12/1.13, the game does feel much improved.

the problem of being instantly detected at mission start seems to have been quashed. It is now much easier to remain undetected, depending of course on the tactical situation.
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Old 04-26-2018, 05:58 PM   #14
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I, too, have been playing video games since the late 1980's -- PC, console, arcade, you name it.

As with the so called shooter games, none of the video games, no matter how they are presented, are realistic. There are elements of realism, and so called immersive features.

This game, as with all I've ever played, is not realistic. It does have, however, elements of realism and immersion.

As perhaps one of the greatest producers of video games noted [Tom Clancy], you have to find a balance between realism and play-ability. Too much of one or the other will only appeal to one, usually small, segment.

No matter what a producer or developer does, everyone will not be happy with the outcome.

In terms of the so called flaws and bugs in this game, I have found my share but they are comparatively far and few between -- flaws and bugs, usually, fixed post haste by this game's developers. A rare find, indeed.

While there could be a number of enhancements and improvements to this game, as with most titles, I am, for the most part, happy with this game. It hearkens to an older age of gaming with a newer age of visuals.

If you can't or don't understand the many nuances that many on this board refer to as bugs, or whatever terminology you are using, that is because you are trying to compare a Tom Clancy-esque type game with a Jane's game. You can't. And, sometimes **** just happens in this game as it might actually occur in real life. Ditto the shooter games -- which most people, like the sub sims, have have no actual time in. So, to gripe endlessly, as some do, just illustrates their ignorance and Pampers heritage.

Finally, this is one of the very few modern games I can play while multi-tasking on a low to mid-end gaming laptop. And it still looks, sounds, and performs great!

I, for one, truly appreciate what the producer and developers of this game have done. Until the release of this game, I thought fun, good looking sub sims was a thing of the past, and or that any new sub sim would require the latest in computing hardware, as so many of the newest titles do -- if you want to experience a fluid, good looking game.

We all have things we would like to see changed. Make those duly noted. But how about not coming off as though they created a 2nd-rate piece of crap that never gets it right.

Wow...rant over.
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Old 04-27-2018, 10:56 AM   #15
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yes, agreed. I was not sure at first what to think of this game since at first glance, it seems to lack the depth of say "Dangerous Waters", but this game does grow on you and it has the right mix of realism and playability to be both a interesting simulation and really fun to play.

The Dev support is also exceptional, which is always a big factor for me.
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