Note: This article has been updated to reflect changes to the test-in-progress. See the bottom for recent changes.
We hope to achieve an increased level of transparency in the development process, for those features/mechanics that will be affecting the gameplay experience in a major way.
Each new feature we want to explain clearly and answer all these questions you may have:
A Fog-of-War element has been added to all RAAS layers.
The first Capture Point is known, and the next Capture point in the lattice is revealed once your team has fully captured your current objective.
This mechanic has been added to increase variability in gameplay. (Especially at the beginning of a round.) We believe this will further help differentiate RAAS from AAS.
In A12 we noticed the RAAS was not as distinguished from normal AAS as we would like, especially regarding the initial movement period “rush”. With Fog of War we hope to increase a deeper variety of tactics, encouraging fallback positions, overwatch positions, the need for reconnaissance and the maneuvering of heavy assets.
We expect rushing to become more a tactical maneuver for gaining initial control on the territory of the map and scouting routes of enemy advancement, than a way to guarantee a victory in the fight for objective.
Random AAS now has Lanes added to all RAAS_v1 map layers.
RAAS Lanes breaks up the Capture Zones into 2 or 3 lanes per layer. Each Lane will have 5 to 8 Capture Zone groups. Each Capture Zone group still has only 1 CP selected per round, out of a potential up to 5 Capture Zones.
In A12 we have layers with Capture Zones that can be quite distant across the map, which can cause transportation problems and needlessly extend round length times. RAAS Lanes will help group up the flow of each Capture Zone to be relatively close to each other. This should prevent instances where Capture Zones are located far away from each other, which will help general flow of gameplay.
Ticket bleed has been added back to all AAS and RAAS gameplay layers.
This should give back a little more incentive to push to the next enemy point.
Why it was removed? In past ticket bleed was too powerful, and also was triggering on the central flags, resulting in King of the Hill style of gameplay, and also incentivizing players to rush from the start to the central objective that was providing a ticket bleed bonus. In the end, it led to the repetitive gameplay experience, rounds were played in almost exactly the same way, which clearly wasn’t our goal & intention.
In addition, ticket bleed was not a very transparent mechanic, it didn’t have any UI representation.
So now we are reintroducing ticket bleed mechanics into AAS/RAAS game modes, with improvements, based on our previous experience.
The opposing team will start bleeding tickets if you will successfully capture at least one objective on the enemy side of the flag lattice. For each objective on the enemy part of the map, controlled by your team, the enemy will lose 1 ticket per minute.
On map layers with an odd number of objectives, central objectives are considered a middle ground, and therefore do not trigger ticket bleed to avoid causing King-of-the-Hill style fighting for it.
On such layers, your team will need to capture at least one more flag past the central point for the enemy to start bleeding tickets.
And for map layers with even number of objectives, your team will need to capture more than half of them, to trigger ticket bleed on the enemy team.
One more important detail, that in the case of “double-neutral” stalemate situation, all ticket bleed mechanics will be paused until stalemate will be solved.
A12 mercy bleed has not changed in A13: if one team manages to successfully capture all flags on the map, the opposing team will suffer a catastrophic ticket bleed of 60 tickets per minute, to help bring an end to the round.
Added the ability for Squad Leaders to place rally points remotely next to other squad’s Rally Points.
This request is only available when the squad leader of the placing squad is dead.
This is intended to allow Squads to have the flexibility to reinforce friendly Squads separate to FOBs.
This is an experimental feature requiring feedback.
The FTL markers will have their Rangefinding function removed.
We felt that this range finding feature became the most prominent reason why Squad Leaders were assigning Fireteams, rather than their intended purpose which was to organize the Squad to use effective fire and maneuver tactics. Often SL would only assign one unit to a Fireteam (commonly the LAT/HAT/UGL/Marksman), and in fact, Squadmates in those roles would ask/demand for them to be assigned that role, without ever taking any leadership role responsibility.
This change will likely lessen the amount of long-range mobility kills on tracked vehicles, so armored vehicles will be encouraged to engage targets at longer ranges. Experienced LAT users with excellent eyeballing/map reading / binocular ranging skillsets will be encouraged due to this change. Teamwork within squads to triangulate positions of enemy armor with the help of recon/spotters will also be more prevalent with this change.
From our perspective, the main negative impact of removing the FTL Rangefinder will be for the Mortar operators. Mortar effectiveness increased with the FTL rangefinding feature in A12, but squad communication decreased.
For A13, mortars will still be quite deadly (even more so with the HE radius increased). Removing the FTL Rangefinder will likely increase the need for teamwork and communication in order to have effective use of the Mortars.
Most effective use of the mortar will likely come when used in a small purposeful squad with the SL placing markers the SL Marker on targets (the SL Marker still retains a Rangefinder). External Mortar Calc apps will still be used to be very effective at pinpoint target accuracy.
In a future update, we would like to implement additional functionality for the “Fire Mission: Mortar” request marker that SL can place on the map. When occupying a Mortar Tube, all friendly “Fire Mission: Mortar” icons would show their bearing and range on the Mortar players compass. We also have a few other ideas to increase Mortar useability in lieu of the FTL Marker, which could include allowing Mortar Tube operators to place their own single “Fire Mission: Mortar” map marker, so they can gauge range even without any SL’s placing Request for Mortar or any other markers.
In a future update, we would also like to add a rangefinder to a handheld binoculars item for the SL. This may be connected to other gameplay elements and may be subject to change.
Note: This feature was not initially merged, but has been subsequently added. See the April 17th Update below.
Our observations showed that standard APC of Russian Ground Forces currently has way too low survivability rate in engagements with enemy armor. One of the reasons behind it we think is its lower level of armor and interacting with the armor penetration system functionality. Most of the time, BTRs have no chance to escape an unexpected frontal engagement due to the fact that it suffers heavy damage on the engine because high caliber weapons piercing through it’s hull like a hot knife through butter.
So now we upgraded all BTR models with engine protection plate, that should prevent it from suffering an instant mobility kill from a frontal fire.
Also, we have increased the damage output of Russian 2A72 30mm autocannon, equipped on BTR-82A and MTLB 6MB by 20% and increased it’s overheating time up to 10 seconds. That should increase Russian Ground Forces offensive capabilities to help them to deal with better-armored enemy counterparts, like the M1126 Combat Vehicle.
But make no mistake, BTR primary role is still transporting and supporting infantry, and it generally is not supposed to be engaging superior Infantry Fighting Vehicles like US M2A3 face to face. In future updates, we plan to add a proper IFV to Russian Ground Forces, in the form of well known BMP family vehicles.