Thread: Field Design
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Old November 19th, 2014, 15:04   #15
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Ricochet's Avatar
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: North Delta, BC (Greater Vancouver)
What constitutes military simulation (milsim)? How realistic does it have to be? What dynamics must be included for it to count as milsim? Vehicles, structures, objectives, amount of players, etc? End to end skirmish, flag tag and speed ball style games aren't really that type of event, so what is? Realistically it's how everything related to the event that makes it a true simulation.

It starts with the players. What military or period are you simulating? Usually modern military is common, then decide on kit; tan versus green, Multicam versus woodland, etc. How many players and quality of players will determine how big, how much time, and how complicated the sim can be. Having a large complex sim full of newbs, you'll likely end up with a goat rodeo. Strong an organized leadership is a must, and usually that comes with strong organized teams. People will only follow those that know what they are doing, and the more people you have, the stronger the leadership needs to be. The alternative is a bunch of players off doing their own thing and not working together. That's how you end with players thinking "I'm going to hold this building for no reason". The more players you have, the bigger the field you'll need, the bigger the field, the more complex you can make the sim, the more complex it can be, and the more complex the more time you may need to complete it. Also, if you're doing a Cold War, WWII, or modern military style thing, that dude with the broadsword or dressed like Lara Croft, can kind of ruin it for the others trying to get into it.

You field should be the type of place geared towards the event and vice versa. If you have three acres with a few plywood structures, then you can't hold a twenty-four hour simulation with a hundred people. So what's available to you? Diverse play areas, big buildings, forested area, roads, etc, make the simulation more engrossing. Small makeshift cover is weekend skirmish type stuff, people want floors and rooms to clear, long competitive firefights and something to fight for. So you have to be clever at how you use your environment. A bunch of plywood buildings can be a town or village or whatever, but people's brains won't accept that it's an nuclear industrial complex. If you're playing in the forest then think of clever reasons and objectives why they are there. In short, if it's just a bigger version of standard weekend play, then people won't be into it as much.

Time is a huge factor. Do you have enough, do you have too much? That is basically decided by how long and complex the game is versus what your player base is like. Sometimes short sims are best, like 6-8 hours. Planning them to be about 3-4 hours of daylight and 3-4 hours of night time can make some of the best small scale sim dynamics. If dusk is at seven, then start at four and play till eleven. People need substance and intrigue, if the sim goes from noon until four then you could've pulled that off during a normal weekend airsofting session, so what are they paying more money for? If wishing to hold an endurance game, sixteen, eighteen, twenty-four, thirty-six, forty-eight hours, etc, then all of your ducks need to be in a row. Is there enough players, areas and thing for them to do? What's the weather going to be like? Consider everything and be ready. Players attending must be geared towards that type of play as well. Many games I've attended a large chunk of players left early, for one reason or another, and it threw the whole game off.

Objectives and goals are the main focus. How many players, how much time, and the field available will all hinge on the games complexities. Once again, don't do a normal weekend airsoft type thing and then just slap another name on it. Something like Delta is in this building here, which is a weapons manufacturing facility, and Spetznas has to try and take it. What I hear in my head is; team A against team B fight over this plywood box, and didn't we do this last Sunday at the paintball field? Objectives need to be ongoing and tie into each other. If you want the players to stay in the game then give them a reason to. A smart game coordinator can keep dropping intel and pushing the game in intelligent directions.

That's a fraction of it at any rate. Considering how and where people respawn, that people need to eat, that weather can change things quickly, etc, etc, etc, all play a part in planning.

Stay in the game, have fun, and work as a team.

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