Any way to get gunners to attack ground targets?
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Thread: Any way to get gunners to attack ground targets?

  1. #1

    Any way to get gunners to attack ground targets?

    Hasn't it been a long time since I posted lol? Glad to see one of our Mustangs made it into the ETO. I'm downloading it now.

    Wow there are so many updates to look into. I see new clouds and shaders that look amazing.

    I just finished a cfs3 campaign for the first time in over a decade! I am working on a hypothetical german fighter that goes along with my R/C hobby, but would really like to get the gunner to shoot at ground targets to have the most fun.

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by SkyUnlimited View Post
    Hasn't it been a long time since I posted lol? Glad to see one of our Mustangs made it into the ETO. I'm downloading it now.

    Wow there are so many updates to look into. I see new clouds and shaders that look amazing.

    I just finished a cfs3 campaign for the first time in over a decade! I am working on a hypothetical german fighter that goes along with my R/C hobby, but would really like to get the gunner to shoot at ground targets to have the most fun.
    Greetings! Great to hear from you. It gives me the chance to thank you for making the early Mustang available for the ETO project. I enjoy flying it over Northern Italy.

    If you follow the settings for an aircraft like the Me 110, the rear gunner in that aircraft shoots at ground targets. Actually, on reflection, the Me110 gunner shoots at me when sitting on the runway in QC mode, so technically I guess the target is still another aircraft.

    In the guns folder are gun.xdp files. There is a parameter in some of the gun xdps, "TargetCategory". You could try adding the entry TargetCategory="vehicles,facility,ships" to the gun xdp that you plan to include in the gunstations of the aircraft.

    A related parameter is in the gunstations section of the aircraft xdp. If the gun is trainable, the entries are "Trainable="1" Trigger="0". If the gun is not trainable, perhaps link the gunstation to a seat that is not the pilot's in the aircraft xdp.

    I'm just providing a series of guesses here, in case you hadn't noticed! One thing I find is that where groundskill is high, things like tanks and ships open up on aircraft with their main guns, which I dislike because occassionally they get lucky and blast me out of the sky. So maybe the reverse is true - the higher air skill settings might allow gunstations to select a wider variety of targets than just other aircraft?

    Anyway, I look forward to hearing what others think.

  3. #3
    Quote Originally Posted by Daiwilletti View Post
    Greetings! Great to hear from you. It gives me the chance to thank you for making the early Mustang available for the ETO project. I enjoy flying it over Northern Italy.

    If you follow the settings for an aircraft like the Me 110, the rear gunner in that aircraft shoots at ground targets. Actually, on reflection, the Me110 gunner shoots at me when sitting on the runway in QC mode, so technically I guess the target is still another aircraft.

    In the guns folder are gun.xdp files. There is a parameter in some of the gun xdps, "TargetCategory". You could try adding the entry TargetCategory="vehicles,facility,ships" to the gun xdp that you plan to include in the gunstations of the aircraft.

    A related parameter is in the gunstations section of the aircraft xdp. If the gun is trainable, the entries are "Trainable="1" Trigger="0". If the gun is not trainable, perhaps link the gunstation to a seat that is not the pilot's in the aircraft xdp.

    I'm just providing a series of guesses here, in case you hadn't noticed! One thing I find is that where groundskill is high, things like tanks and ships open up on aircraft with their main guns, which I dislike because occassionally they get lucky and blast me out of the sky. So maybe the reverse is true - the higher air skill settings might allow gunstations to select a wider variety of targets than just other aircraft?

    Anyway, I look forward to hearing what others think.
    I tried adding the parameter targetcatergoy= etc but no joy. I added it to gunstation,guns,rounds,and the Jeep all as a test. I couldn’t find any examples of targetcategory= in files in the cfs3 folder. Is there a known file I could study?

    Thanks for the help.

  4. #4
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    Like I said, look in the guns folder. For the torp_gun: <Gun GunType="gun" TargetCategory="ships" . . .

    For the 76mm_gun: <Gun GunType="gun" TargetCategory="vehicles,facility" . . .

    The targetcategory is not totally hard and fast. When I try to apply high Groundskill to campaign missions, I've seen ships firing their main guns at passing aircraft! Which suggests that sometimes the guns will fire at targets beyond those listed in the TargetCategory.

  5. #5
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    Test

    To test the idea of getting AI gunners shooting at ground targets, I chose the stock JU88p4 as a test mule. It has a 50mm fixed forward-facing gun, so not ideal as I would have preferred a trainable gun for "strafing" potential.

    I went to the aircraft's xdp file, and found the Seats section. In there I went to the co-pilot station and added another gunstation. The co-pilot is already in charge of a forward-firing MG, but I gave him command of the 50mm gun as well!

    <Seat Name="Co-Pilot">
    <Stations>
    <Station Name="Co-Pilot Gun" Type="gunner_station" View="1">
    <GunStations>
    <GunStation ID="0"/>
    </GunStations>
    </Station>
    <Station Name="Co-Pilot Cannon" Type="gunner_station" View="2">
    <GunStations>
    <GunStation ID="3"/>
    </GunStations>
    </Station>
    </Stations>
    </Seat>
    the gun station numbering comes from the gunstations section of the aircraft's xdp file. Numbering starts from the top gunstation, at 0. The cannon is the fourth gun in the gunstations list, so it is numbered "3" in the copilot's gunner stations.

    Then I went to the 50mmbk5.xdp in the guns folder, and added "facility,vehicles,ships" as a TargetCategory.

    Then I went to QC in my CFS3 Modified Upgrade install. I chose "Ground Attack" and "Factory" as the target, and took along 4 wingmen. We flew from Caen. The resultant QC mission file can be found in the AppData pathway for the install, under the Missions folder, and looks like this:

    <!--Combat Flight Sim mission-->
    <Mission>
    <Params Version="3.0" Directive="strike" Country="Germany" TotalGoals="1" Aircraft="Ju 88P-4" Airbase="caen25" Date="10/30/1943" Time="08:40" Weather="thunderheads.xml" Theater="CFS3Europe"/>
    <Title>Quick Combat</Title>
    <Goals>
    <Goal Lat="N49*30'0.0000&quot;" Lon="E0*6'59.9999&quot;" Points="1"/>
    </Goals>
    <AirFormation ID="6000" Directive="strike" Mode="qc" Country="Germany" IsRegenerable="y" Points="2" Skill="1" Payload="0" FormType="1">
    <Unit ID="1000" Type="ju_88p_4" Name="Banger" IsPlayer="y"/>
    <Unit ID="1001" Type="ju_88p_4" Name="Banger-1"/>
    <Unit ID="1002" Type="ju_88p_4" Name="Banger-2"/>
    <Unit ID="1003" Type="ju_88p_4" Name="Banger-3"/>
    <Unit ID="1004" Type="ju_88p_4" Name="Banger-4"/>
    <Route ID="5000">
    <Waypoint Type="turn" Speed="107" IsWarpable="n" IsVisible="y" Lat="N49*8'11.3997&quot;" Lon="W0*25'44.3999&quot;" Alt="761.99"/>
    <Waypoint Type="allweapons" Speed="107" IsWarpable="n" IsVisible="y" Lat="N49*30'0.0000&quot;" Lon="E0*6'59.9999&quot;" Alt="2000.00"/>
    <Waypoint Type="landanywhere" Speed="107" IsWarpable="y" IsVisible="y" Lat="N50*8'4.9858&quot;" Lon="E1*4'10.0962&quot;" Alt="2000.00"/>
    </Route>
    </AirFormation>
    </Mission>

    We approached the target, which was 30km from Caen. It was a factory, with a radar station and a military_invasion_defence nearby. The facilities were a mix of USA and British.

    The factory showed up as purple (ie the mission objective) in the TAC indicator. But as the five of us approached the target area, my wingmen gave the "target in sight" message. This hasn't happened to me before! So I circled around and watched. Three ju88s approached the radar station (NOT the mission objective), and the co-pilots blasted the facility to bits. The fourth Ju88 wingman approached the invasion defence, which was a hardened target and did not seem to suffer much damage although I saw the co-pilot firing.

    I'm not sure if this is exactly what you are looking for. It did demonstrate that AI gunstations will attack ground facilities, however as you can see there was a mission directive of "strike" in place, as well as a Waypoint Type given as "AllWeapons".

    If the AI aircraft had appeared as random air.spawns then they would also have had a directive per the air_fub or air_eeb spawn xmls, either Strike or Search_destroy (the reason being I have the ju88p4 set up as a tactical_bomber which hopefully is the default setting).

    I'm not a hundred percent on my gunner station setup, as the views are not right in my set of modified stations - the order may be hard-coded into the cockpit m3ds?

  6. #6
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    Anti_shipping

    Once we had attacked the ground facilities, (and lost one aircraft to flak), we turned our attention to a coastal shipping formation. it was clearly an invasion support group with three destroyers, and some a_lcis, all USA ships.

    This time, I used the target brackets and sent my remaining wingmen to attack two ships. Then I flew close to the ships, trying to coax my co-pilot to shoot at the ships. I figured it might be difficult as the gun is fixed so I needed to be a) in range; and b) pointing directly at a target. I was not successful but my wingmen were.

    This is what happened:
    <a href="http://www.mediafire.com/file/989u4ruz56aognr/Ju88p4_anti-shipping.mp4/file" target="_blank">http://www.mediafire.com/file/989u4ruz56aognr/Ju88p4_anti-shipping.mp4/file</a>
    Last edited by Daiwilletti; May 23rd, 2020 at 16:21. Reason: wrong link

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    Blast, I can't seem to get the video to embed in the post

  8. #8
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    After further testing I cannot get the AI gunners to attack ground targets by default or if they just happen to be flying past. If there is some sort of ground attack mission directive (strike, search_destroy,cas etc) and a suitable waypoint type ("AllWeapons", "guns"), then AI only formations will attack ground targets. If you are flying with AI wingmen, then you have to direct them to commence attack, by pressing "A" (numerous times if you have numerous wingmen).

    The time I report above when my AI wingmen reported "commencing attack" must have been a mistake. Perhaps I pressed "A" without selecting a target.

    HTH,

  9. #9
    Thanks for all the testing! I changed my gunner stations to 75mm with 4000 as the range. They open up on enemy aircraft before I can even tell if they are friendly or not, but thus far no mods have caused them to fire at ground targets.

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