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FreeKing

Rep: 9.9
votes: 2


PostPosted: Sat Aug 17, 2019 5:46 pm Post subject: [RELEASE] PitF Small Maps Mod (Updated to Revival Mod) Reply with quote

Alright, here we are! The complete play experience I envisioned for a Panthers in the Fog reverted to its roots. I used my small maps mod, and the Combat Operations Mod (v1.5, permission obtained from the author) as a base, to recreate the combat and gameplay of A Bridge Too Far in Panthers in the Fog.

There's the small maps and adjusted victory locations, creating the tight combat zones of Close Combat 2, but also the AI pathing of it, where the AI attacks and defends key areas of the map, which it always did, but is now more effective in doing so with the small maps. Some of the maps have the original victory locations, but only those that were within the area of the map I cut it down to. Other maps have new victory locations to fill the focused area of the small maps. Other maps are a combination of original victory locations and new, and I've adjusted the victory location point values to get the AI to more effectively place units on the map, which makes it fight better.

Then there's the data adjustments. I used the terrain elements data from the original A Bridge Too Far and applied it to Panthers in the Fog's terrain elements, making the use of terrain a focus on proper cover and concealment. Open ground is a death sentence. All tank guns, anti-tank guns and hand-held anti-tank weapons (such as bazookas and panzerfausts) have had their armor penetration values modified to match their historical counterparts. All vehicles, excepts jeeps and trucks and the like (because modifying them would've been useless, as the chassis and body are just like any other regular car), have had their armor values modified to their historical counterparts. For example, no more destroying Panthers with a Sherman on a frontal shot, and conversely your Sherman is going to get blown apart if it sits still in the sights of a Panther. The King Tiger is a truly massive, almost impenetrable beast. Additionally, vehicles have had their speed and acceleration changed to match their historical version (I found a vehicle acceleration formula online, and used the calc sheets from The Longest Day's workbook). The blast radius of explosive have been increased to their historical values. You'll need to make smart tactical and strategic decisions if you want to win, because the combat is overhauled to be frenzied and realistic. A modern Close Combat 2 set in France.

Those are the highlights, and I've included a list of changes in the zip file if you want to have a more detailed look at them. I also included installation instructions, and make sure to go to the bottom of the instructions if you want to disable all slots being available, or want to play with the stock Panthers in the Fog data.

MOOXE also gave me FTP access, so the below download links are from CCS's FTP until MOOXE gets installers worked up for them and put on the downloads page. I included two versions of the mod - one with the small maps, and one without. I wouldn't use the version without the small maps unless you're playing multiplayer, but don't want to use the small maps, because the AI is going to be the stock game's quality without the small maps.

This mod is my end goal for modding Panthers in the Fog, an overhaul, and in my opinion it's a much better game, now, akin to its predecessor, CC2. I focused on bringing the overall gameplay back to same quality as A Bridge Too Far, and I envisioned a Panthers in the Fog as it should have been.

//Download Links

PitF Revival Mod - Full Version

PitF Revival Mod - Data Changes Only

I also recommend Bendit's Thinner Fog Effect Mod and Rolling Thunder Sound and Voice Mod to go along with my Revival Mod. The fog mod makes everything more visible when the fog effect is enabled, and the sound mod adds awesome atmosphere and effect to the combat.

I'll be moving on to Gateway to Caen next. I hope you all enjoy, and I look forward to the next release.

-FreeKing


Last edited by FreeKing on Sun Dec 20, 2020 9:39 pm; edited 5 times in total
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reconscout

Rep: 46.6


PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 1:51 am Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

Thank you for this and all your hard work


that which does not kill you makes you stronger
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Pete

Rep: 106
votes: 12


PostPosted: Sun Aug 18, 2019 8:08 am Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

Thanks Freeking. I will check these out but I am not going to continue work on your project as I have plenty of projects to work on myself.


Dulce Bellum Inexpertis
(War is delightful to those who have no experience of it.)
Our facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/buckandpete/
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Bendit

Rep: 16.8
votes: 1


PostPosted: Wed Aug 21, 2019 6:39 pm Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

This is a great mod! I can't believe how much it improves Panthers in the Fog. The smaller maps are still a decent size, but it makes searching the fog for AI troops a thing of the past, and the complex PitF terrain is now much easier to understand.

Battles are indeed intense. The AI really adapts wonderfully well to the smaller map sizes and Freeking's placement of Victory Locations. I appreciate the changes to unlocking all slots and giving AI units better morale, tactical, strategic and leader stats too. And the expanded deployment zones make AI fighting onto maps much more interesting.

Thanks for all the work FreeKing.


Last edited by Bendit on Sat Aug 31, 2019 10:18 pm; edited 3 times in total
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ScnelleMeyer

Rep: 163.3
votes: 11


PostPosted: Thu Aug 22, 2019 7:48 pm Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

Very good job on these maps and the other edits FreeKing!

This will be my regular maps for playing PITF from now on.
Thank you very much for your effort.
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Red

Rep: 39.8


PostPosted: Sat Aug 24, 2019 2:23 pm Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

Great!
thank's
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FreeKing

Rep: 9.9
votes: 2


PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2019 3:53 am Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

Excellent! Glad to see you guys are having a blast with it.

Bendit wrote (View Post):
This is a great mod! I can't believe how much it improves Panthers in the Fog. The smaller maps are still a decent size, but it makes searching the fog for AI troops a thing of the past, and the complex PitF terrain is now much easier to understand.

Battles are indeed intense. The AI really adapts wonderfully well to the smaller map sizes and Freeking's placement of Victory Locations. I appreciate the changes to unlocking all slots and giving AI units better morale, tactical, strategic and leader stats too. And the expanded deployment zones make AI fighting onto maps much more interesting.

Thanks for all the work FreeKing.


The victory locations themselves were placed with some research into the placement of victory locations in CC2. I’d watched let’s plays and studied the maps to figure out the ideal placement, amount, and point values.

I’m not exaggerating when I say the AI is almost exactly the same as CC2, with a few differences to pathfinding and such. It’s otherwise the same as every other Close Combat, save for The Bloody First. The several developers of the series hardly even touched it.

In any case, keep having fun, guys!
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Bendit

Rep: 16.8
votes: 1


PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2019 2:26 pm Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

Thanks again FreeKing. I have been doing a lot of playing and modding of PitF, inspired by your work.

I agree the AI with your 'small maps mod' is close to as good as it has ever been in CC2. It was clear to me that you gave a lot of thought to placement of victory locations and which part of maps to crop. Part of me thinks this mod should be called something else, because the maps, while trimmed a bit, are still not small. And the changes to AI behavior and gameplay are much more significant.

You kindly offered to explain how you created small maps. You mentioned it's an easy process, if time consuming. I'd be quite interested in learning!
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FreeKing

Rep: 9.9
votes: 2


PostPosted: Mon Sep 23, 2019 6:29 am Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

Sure I can give you the rundown on it, and I’ll give you all my notes on the AI behaviors, too, including deployment and how that relates to the victory locations and the AI’s attack/defense behaviors. All you need is 5CC and notepad. Don’t even have to do any recoding of terrain elements or elevations. I’ll write it up in word or something and post it here for your use tomorrow evening.
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Red

Rep: 39.8


PostPosted: Mon Sep 23, 2019 7:13 am Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

Hello,
And for Gateway to Caen?
thx
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Bendit

Rep: 16.8
votes: 1


PostPosted: Mon Sep 23, 2019 2:57 pm Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

That would be awesome FreeKing. Thank you.

Then we could try applying a similar approach to Gateway to Caen maps.
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FreeKing

Rep: 9.9
votes: 2


PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 1:56 am Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

Okay, Bendit. Here you are. I included a written tutorial (which I hop is clear enough. I included a lot of pictures to help walk you through it) and the finished example map I did in the tutorial. Feel free to include it in your finished mod, if you want. For anyone else that's interested, too, part of the tutorial is an analysis of the AI to help whoever's reading it to understand why I put the maps together the way I did. Let me know if you need any help, Bendit. SchnelleMeyer is a good resource for it, too, as he's the one that helped me into an epiphany to make these maps quickly.

Download link: https://www.dropbox.com/s/07wtb0c3ro0vf49/Small%20Map%20Tutorial.zip?dl=0
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Bendit

Rep: 16.8
votes: 1


PostPosted: Tue Sep 24, 2019 4:34 am Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

Wow. Thank you FreeKing. That is very generous of you to create and share. I read through all the tutorial and I was really impressed by your clear, well-illustrated and thorough documentation. I appreciate you explaining your discoveries behind AI battle behaviors and deployment too. That was very interesting and made a lot of sense as well.

Thanks for sharing the example map for GtC too!  Cool

I look forward to resizing and VL reworking of maps as soon as I have finished my new PitF mod.
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FreeKing

Rep: 9.9
votes: 2


PostPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2019 4:08 pm Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

Heads up, I'm working on the GtC small maps, Bendit. I've got a day or two of free time, and I figured I'd knock 'em out real quick.
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FreeKing

Rep: 9.9
votes: 2


PostPosted: Sun Oct 06, 2019 4:18 pm Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

Oh, and through my experimentation I figured out that even without all slots enabled, and leaving the stock game's data for available forces intact, the AI still performs just as well. So, if you don't want all slots enabled, feel free to delete FPools.txt from the mod's installation. Be sure to leave BGroups.txt though. That has the AI commander changes in it.
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Bendit

Rep: 16.8
votes: 1


PostPosted: Mon Oct 07, 2019 12:17 am Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

Oh that's great news Freeking! Thanks for the head's up about the maps for GtC.
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GeneralSauce

Rep: 30.6


PostPosted: Tue Oct 08, 2019 5:24 am Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

Good lookin!
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qwaqwe

Rep: 26.7


PostPosted: Wed Feb 05, 2020 9:49 am Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

Thank you very much.

Amazing mode.

But i wish maps will be reduced by another 20-30%.
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FreeKing

Rep: 9.9
votes: 2


PostPosted: Thu Feb 13, 2020 6:22 pm Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod Reply with quote

qwaqwe wrote (View Post):

Thank you very much.

Amazing mode.

But i wish maps will be reduced by another 20-30%.


The map scale in PiTF and GtC are much higher than the ones that came before it. Cutting down another 2-30% would make the fights so congested that there are almost no tactical options. I try to keep roads open, too, because if a lot of tanks get knocked out on the roads there's no maneuvering them and the AI would just lose them all the time, or maybe just straight up lose its sh*t and freeze.

I'm glad you're enjoying it, by the way.
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FreeKing

Rep: 9.9
votes: 2


PostPosted: Sat Nov 28, 2020 6:52 am Post subject: Re: [RELEASE] PitF Small Map Mod (Renamed to Revival Mod) Reply with quote

Wanted to give you all a heads up that I've decided to rename the small map mod to the Revival Mod. I've also uploaded the mod to ModDB to clear up room on my Dropbox.

Like a previous post suggested, I've begun expansion of my small maps mods to bring the series back to its roots by reviving not only the AI of A Bridge Too Far, but also the gameplay and overall combat of it, with a historical combat realism added in. Altogether this would recreate the gameplay of A Bridge Too Far, but pushing it farther to the vicious and deadly reality of combat in World War II.

The small maps is the first phase of the overhauls for the series. The gameplay and data changes to combat, units and unit organization is the second phase and the completion of the overhaul.

Here's the new link to the mod:

ModDB, Revival Mod Downloads Page

The Dropbox link, for the time being, is still valid (though named differently), but after I'm done with the mod I'll be deleting the old version from my Dropbox and it will have its permanent home on ModDB, and here if anyone wants to upload it to the downloads section for Panthers in the Fog.

After Panthers in the Fog, I'll be starting on Gateway to Caen next, then Last Stand Arnhem after that. I want to wrap up the overhauls for the existing phase one mods before moving on to the rest of the series. After Last Stand Arnhem and Gateway to Caen are completed on phase two, I'll be moving on to the rest of the series, completing it in this order:

Wacht am Rhein (for the most part, the maps for Wacht am Rhein are already small, and most just require adjustments on the victory locations. I'll have to downsize a pretty good chunk of them, but Wahct am Rhein will be a faster development cycle)

The Longest Day (this one might take a while. The developers put alot of work into expanding the maps, and there's over 60 of them, so the maps themselves would take a couple days, maybe longer)

Cross of Iron (this one will be a little more work, because I need to familiarize myself with the way Cross of Iron's data is set up, and building the mod file for Cross of Iron's ModSwap utility).

Like I did with the first phase of LSA, GtC and PitF, I'll release the small maps for each of the above, then release the phase two mods. After that, my work is basically done on the series. All that would come after would be patches and fixes from any bugs or issues you guys report to me. It's a passion project for me. This series goes back all the way to early childhood for me.

Until next time,

FreeKing
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