Command Fiction: Two Bombs, Twenty Targets

This is, I’ll admit, a shameless advertisement for the newest scenario that I’ve made. But it’s both that and the truth of limited resources.

Somewhere in Cape Verde…

“We have two Litening pods.”

“Use them against the AFVs.”

“Yeah, and repeat Kosovo’s whack-a-tank with much fewer planes? Nuh-uh, they’re for fixed targets.”

“But they don’t have that many important fixed targets.”

“Use them against the airfield.”

“But we can hit the airfield with unguided bombs just fine.”

This is the dilemma that earlier and/or less well equipped air forces have. As will you if you play the scenario 😀


Source Extinguishing

So, I got and beat Pokemon Moon. I’m impressed that I managed a totally unspoilered playthrough. The game is good, even if I think the Pokemon franchise/formula is showing signs of limits. Still, it’s a cash Miltank.

But what it quenched was my SII commando fic concept, simply because playing a cutesy kids game shows just how much force is required to wedge in realistic special operators. The one idea I had was an SII agent in Alola-on her honeymoon.

Kind of illuminating overall, and a reason why I want more fanfic writers to be involved in the source material-(which seems like a no-brainer but sadly isn’t).


Command Fiction: The Missing Missile Boat

Another tale of fun editor shenanigans, this time removing a unit once it’s served its purpose.

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Missiles whirred, decoys released, and when all was said and done, the two SS-N-2s launched from the enemy Komar were no longer a threat. As the destroyer moved to open fire on the now-vulnerable missile boat, suddenly, it-mysteriously vanished.

Not sunk. Not destroyed. Just disappeared.

The crew had little time to ponder the disappearance. Suddenly their radar warning systems lit up, and their sensors spotted another incoming wave of missiles, this time greater in number.

Meanwhile, in a chair far away, the mysterious figure went…

“Ok, a Komar’s worthless, but let’s see how they do against an Osa.”

Cars and Superheroes

I go through superhero phases, and am in one right now. So far my characters range from a superheroine who can “pause” time to a supervillain with no powers except his maniacal training and sharp intellect.

I institute a rough basic chart of comparison, with “Punisher-equivalents” at the bottom (skilled normal humans) to “Superman-equivalents” (cosmic level characters) at the top. The problem with that is in between, and not just because some superpowers are apples and oranges. Given the inconsistency of comics, where is a “Spider-Man equivalent” compared to a “Wolverine equivalent”?

Then I realized that I’d run into the same problem GM did with its array of brands between Chevy at the bottom and Cadillac at the top. The middle is more inherently blurry. The problem was amplified when you had internal competition-as was the case with comics as well.

Command Fiction: The Embarrassment

This Command Fiction is based on one of my most infamous outliers in the scenario editor-a low-end enemy sub that never realized it was under attack yet nonetheless took four advanced torpedoes to bring down. There was nothing wrong in gameplay terms, it was just a series of unlucky dice rolls.

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That was the nature of submarines. Very quiet. And apparently, the first postwar firing of torpedoes in anger had the same problem that the first World War II torpedoes had. They apparently weren’t reliable.

The target was hit and sunk (and by the looks of it, never even noticed until it was too late), and the launcher still had plenty of torpedoes. But still, having three torpedoes miss before a fourth finally ran true was a call for much investigation.

History apparently repeated itself after all. Maybe this time, the successors of the Bureau of Ordnance would be more cooperative.


On Trying to Not Be Spoiled

I’m trying not to be spoiled by blockbusters until I finally read/watch/play them. It’s harder than it seems, but I’ve managed it on more than one occasion. I got most of the way through Undertale without being spoiled, and my experience was all the better for it.

Though I have to admit there’s little middle ground with games for me. It’s either a bumbling blind playthrough or a robotic walkthrough.

Another one where I wasn’t spoiled before experiencing it was the name of the traitor in Payday 2′ Hoxton Revenge. Then again, I only had a <30 minute mission to sit through, not a long, detailed game.

Command Fiction: The Biggest Target

This is based on my scenario Sinking A Battlewagon. The scenario itself is one of those “in ‘reality’ it’s just an exercise” ones, but I figured that, given the controversy over battleships, I’d do one where the score is ‘settled’.

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Never was a SINKEX more controversial than when the USS Iowa was chosen to be destroyed as a target. The ship was already hit from its infamous turret disaster, and post-USSR, it was an expensive surplus.

And no one wanted it as a museum.

But still, a battleship. There was a feeling that it should have been saved. But in the end, it wasn’t, a volley of submarine torpedoes bringing it down.

100 posts in a year and counting

I was suffering from writer’s block, looked at the stats, and realized that the next post I’d make would be the 100th I’d made this year. So, I’m impressed by how much writing I’ve done so far.

100 posts in a year. Incredible.

Command Fiction: The Truth About The Incident

This week’s edition of Command Fiction stars the infamous “F-22s didn’t score an air-to-air kill but A-10s did” incident I mentioned before. The scenario is “Breaking Bad”, or rather an earlier test version, since revisiting it showed much more enemy air assets than the one Cessna I encountered in my playthrough.

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So, there’s been a lot of hooting and hollering from that crowd about how F-22s didn’t score an air to air kill in the mission to clear out the Bab-al-Mandab strait, but how an A-10 did.

This had nothing to do with the aircraft and everything to do with the ROEs and context. The aircraft in question was a Cessna 208 Combat Caravan that was apparently being used as a surveillance platform. It was unarmed, posed little threat to the operation, and could be mistaken for a civilian one. As a result, the F-22s screening a package in preparation for rumored launches from fighters to the north (that never happened) had enough reasonable doubt as to not open fire.

By the time A-10s began attacking, the reasonable doubt had been lifted as no civilian aircraft would stay in the air that long. Thus they got permission to engage, and the rest is history. One Sidewinder, one hit, confirmed by enemy reactions, pictures of the wreck, and ground forces overrunning said wreck.

The forces worked as a team to secure the strait, with each aircraft doing its part. That an A-10 scored an opportunity victory was just a coincidential footnote. The F-22s potentially deterred the enemy fighters from launching, thus accomplishing their goals without firing a shot.

Character Evolutions

I have to admit my characters have changed and evolved. I try to write them down because otherwise I’d forget, so looking at a previous draft can seem mind-boggling.

I have a weakness of putting the worldbuilding cart before the story horse, and haven’t let a character flow naturally as much as I’d like. Still, maybe the development is the flowing process.

I even created a “Doombot System” to explain any discrepancies. The lead antagonist of every single one of my stories is both a powerful supernatural person and a variety of humans with the same name (they’re connected, it’s a long story). That way I can have multiple sets of power and personality on the same nominal figure without retconning anything. Maybe I was overthinking it, but I still like the concept.