Home » PLAYER'S HQ 1.13 » v1.13 General Gameplay Talk » How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?
icon5.gif  How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348542] Sun, 29 January 2017 01:22 Go to next message
bouchacha
Messages:6
Registered:October 2013
Location: District of Columbia
I love this game and this mod especially but the aspect which always makes me want to run away is how tedious the inventory management is. This is particularly exacerbated by the inclusion of thousands and thousands of slightly different firearms and ammunition. An example scenario:
I get my crew of newbies through to the Drassen airport as well. All the way, I don't really have crates, vehicles, or backpacks but I still stuff my toons' pockets with as much different ammunition and guns I can scavenge just in case; especially since equipment is so scarce at the beginning. I aim hard for Drassen primarily so that I can start ordering massive quantities of surplus ammo and equipment in order to avoid this issue as much as I can. I go online and order some ammo but wait, how much would I need? Which caliber should I choose? After some sweating I click order but now I have to wait several days for it to arrive. My mercs are expensive, so I keep pushing through with the scrap metal equipment I have. I may lose one or two but I make progress. Oh neat, I found some really great assault rifles! Unfortunately they're all NATO ammo and I gambled and ordered a bunch of Warsaw bullets instead. Thankfully I hedged my bets and got a crate of 5.56mm I can make use of. However I'm facing an imminent counter-attack so I pick one of my crappiest persons to sprint to the airport and stuff their cargo pants full of bullets so that I can get resupplied. I survive the counter-attack and spend the next half-hour deciding which guns to keep and which ones to sell by flipping between descriptions and deciding whether I want +1 damage or +3 range etc.....

You get the idea.

I completely understand how it may appeal to some but I find it headache inducing because you have to keep in mind so many different attributes and factors that I tend to drown. If this was my full time as a quartermaster and logistics chief in a military I don't think I would mind, but this is a video game. I don't bring this up to say we should emulate it, but I absolutely loved squad-based games like Tactics Ogre, XCOM, and Silent Storm. I still find them satisfyingly challenging but the inventory management is infinitely easier to handle because they use a single inventory and in the case of XCOM lots of infinite equipment for basic troops. I find myself playing those games for hours on end because I can jump from combat to combat and only minimally deal with the inventory shuffle in between. Similarly, Silent Storm had a single-inventory and it was great.

The combat in JA2 is what I crave most, but usually after one battle I stare at the inventory screen and feel mentally fatigued and drained then I quit and likely never pick up my save game again.

I don't believe JA2 is built to have a single inventory, but I'm genuinely curious as to how you people deal with it and make it fun? Do you have a set procedure on how to quickly decide which equipment to pick? Do you use 'uniform templates'? How do you handle the scheduling of ferrying equipment across the map? How?
Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348544 is a reply to message #348542] Sun, 29 January 2017 02:05 Go to previous messageGo to next message
DepressivesBrot

 
Messages:3740
Registered:July 2009
In no particular order since it's close to 0100 over here:
I guess the most important thing to do is to not give a fuck about the numbers and instead pick another selection criterium - role playing, east/west only, 'looks cool', ... .
Leaving aside a few obvious duds and a couple very specialized items, the average automatic rifle will serve you as well as any other and having an optic for one will probably make a bigger difference than any intra-class variation.
If you move quickly in the early days, anything other than overnight express will have your order hopelessly lag behind your revised equipment situation.
Once you collect enough stuff to somewhat uniformly equip your dudes, do so - it helps a lot with spotting missing items.
I personally find it easier to loop over my team multiple times adding one item type each time than to equip soldiers one by one since it cuts down on inventory scrolling (left&right arrow to scroll mercs is your friend here)
CTRL+SHIFT+W completely strips a merc.
Once feasible, I pack enough consumables to last me a couple fights.
I tend to only do general gear updates once the overall quality of my equipment pool has improved significantly unless it's a very obvious improvement for someone.



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Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348545 is a reply to message #348544] Sun, 29 January 2017 04:34 Go to previous messageGo to next message
grim

 
Messages:288
Registered:July 2006
Location: France
JA2 1.13 can be very heavy on inventory management, it's part of the fun... if you like it.
If you want to lighten this a bit, you can remove NIS (New Inventory System) (hmm, can we? I never thought about this as i like it), Tons of guns (set it to normal), and counterintuitively maybe, set drops to drop all items. That way you will have much more ammo for your guns, more stuff in general to pick for your soldiers, and so make them more uniform easily. You can just sell the rest to the locals for some money (ALT + clic to sell in sector inventory.

One way of equiping your team is to filter by type, start with armor or LBE. You equip each merc with the best status stuff available, one at a time. You can take an object in a pile and drop it on the pile again to rotate the "deck" of items and locate the highest status bar.
Then choose a weapon for each merc depending on their skills and roles, allocate some ammo and attachments. For the stats, you can use DepressivesBrot's method, or if you care, loot at the stats more or less in that order of importance (descending) : range, ap to ready/shoot, damage, the rest
The other stats can be meaningful depending on the CTH system you use and the skills of your merc. Possible attachments can make a great difference too.
Finally, give the kits and utility stuff to your specialists.
Once you have equiped everyone, and conquered another sector, don't forget you can upgrade your stuff (better status of identical items) with the "ctrl + v" menu on tactical.

Don't forget you can use the "move to" assignment to gather all stuff in a city to a single sector.

By the way, these are a few tips only, not an ultimate answer to your problem.

Edit : if you want to order large amount of ammo to equip many mercs, you can bet on 9x19mm for pistols/smg and 5.56x45mm for rifles, they are the most common you will use for quite some time. If you don't want to fuss around with ammo types, just take AP.

[Updated on: Sun, 29 January 2017 04:46]

Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348546 is a reply to message #348545] Sun, 29 January 2017 05:38 Go to previous messageGo to next message
bouchacha
Messages:6
Registered:October 2013
Location: District of Columbia
After thinking about this more, I think that a universal inventory would indeed be a great idea. The way to balance it would be to tie it to militia presence; any location where you've trained non-mobile militia should allow you access to this magic chest where you can store infinite items. It makes sense from a lore standpoint because militias need supply lines and high-end mercs would easily outsource the menial task of trucking items over to others.
Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348549 is a reply to message #348546] Sun, 29 January 2017 09:03 Go to previous messageGo to next message
ratpaz

 
Messages:122
Registered:April 2015
Location: Italy
Well, a vehicle can store plenty of stuff, all the needed for a merc team.
Talking about the inventory managment, yes it's a bit complex compared to other similar games, and it become even "worse" once you get accesso to LBE and camo content, since you will try to maximize inventory space and camuflage, personally i love it, but i can understand some people just want to fight battles and progress with the game.

[Updated on: Sun, 29 January 2017 09:06]

Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348551 is a reply to message #348549] Sun, 29 January 2017 11:14 Go to previous messageGo to next message
BattleGnome

 
Messages:53
Registered:April 2016
I found the additional items in 1.13 compared to vanilla to be mind boggling on my first few play throughs.

In the early game I behave much the same as you do, I grab everything I can and I dump it all at the Drassen airport. This will naturally leave you with a varied assortment of all manner of gear, ammo, and guns which is just the nature of the beast. I make best use of the gear I find and plunder but long term it is a painful way to do inventory; always swapping weapons because you don't have ammo for this or that, and a dozen other problems you end up having.

After more play throughs of the game than I care to count I have decided that a 'standard loadout' appraoch is best. What is a 'standard loadout'? It's exactly what it sounds like... You give each merc matching equipment as often as possible. Which is exactly how real soldiers are issued equipment by the military. Everyone gets the same type of armour, gun, ammo, boots, haircut, etc...

After spending a great deal of time deciding which of each item I preferred I now have a 'standard loadout' for each battlefield role (assault, gunner, sniper, heavy weapons, medic, etc...). With the exception of a few specialty items (lock smith kits, for example) I am very strict about sticking as close to my 'standard loadout' as I can. I only order specific items from Bobby Ray's (which are part of my 'standard loadout') and everything else that comes into my possession I sell to Tony (or another merchant) as soon as I can, unless I get lucky and come across an excellent piece of equipment early in the game which is worth holding onto for a while, but I often find myself selling those items later anyway.

After playing this way it has become very easy for me to decide quickly what equipment I want to keep and what to sell. On top of this I take advantage of item stacking in the game by combining ammo into crates, keeping desired attachments on weapons (so they don't take a seperate slot in the sector inventory), and also not keeping unnecessary amounts of the items I do use. For example; no matter how much I like a particular weapon I'm never going to need 50 of them, I only stockpile as many bullets of a particular type as I can keep in a single inventory slot (after combining into crates), after a certain point in the game hollow points and glasser ammo isn't useful anymore because all the troops are wearing armour (I typically get rid of all hollow points and glasser ammo after killing the blood cats), and so on...

By doing this I have found that my sector inventory in Drassen Airport (where I stockpile everything) has been reduced to about 10% of what it was. Furthermore, I now find that getting items to Tony (and other merchants) in order to sell them has become my biggest logistics issue. (Yes I am aware you can sell items directly from the sector inventory but you receive much less for them than you do by selling them to a merchant the old fashioned way.)

I hope this helps.
Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348554 is a reply to message #348551] Sun, 29 January 2017 13:27 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Flugente

 
Messages:3051
Registered:April 2009
Location: Germany
Somewhat unintuitively, playing with Drop All can help, as you then have more freedom to use what fits your style. On the other hand, you'll be buried under tons of stuff, so... depends on you.
As said before, in stock 1.13 the most common calibers are 9x19mm, 5.56x45mm and 7.62x51mm.
As soon as the enemy wears any body armour, hollow point and glaser ammo become pretty much useless. Go with AP, its the most common ammotype and works on everything.
If SELL_ITEMS_WITH_ALT_LMB in JA2_Options.ini is TRUE, you can sell stuff from the sector inventory.
The GetItem assignment works only in towns and adjacent sectors, but can still save you quite a lot of manually moving items around.
The [Ctrl] + [v] and [Ctrl] + [.] -> Improve gear functions might be very useful to you in item management.

The more mercs you use, the more useful it is to use a standardized inventory. For example, the one I use:
http://i.imgur.com/56n50J4.png
This is the basic pattern all my combat mercs use. The vest is for essential items every merc should have, the leg rig carries all the ammo (any belt or magazine will fit there, so its always the same position), the backpack has food, water and space left for further equipment. As items are always in the same slot, one can quickly see whether any items are missing and need replacement.
Depending on the 'role' I intend for them (doctor, heavy, radio operator, covert ops...) this gets varied.

Don't use your sleep over small item differences. We have a ton of assault rifles, but the differences are tiny. Use what you like (and what you have ammo for).

As far as item management goes, I use dedicated squads for that:
In my HQ (Cambria, very central) I place a pack of repair dudes, whose sole purpose is to repair items so that more important mercs don't have to waste time on that. Obviously, these mercs should have a high MEC stat, the Technician trait and be cheap.
Flo takes up permanent residence at Tony (thanks to her background, she gets a discount when dealing arms). Her only purpose is to buy and sell items (if you sell items via LMB, this might not be necessary for you).
And finally, there's the vulture squad. These mercs have the thankless job ob moving items from the recent battlefields to my HQ (via foot, car or GetItem assignment), to move items to be sold to Tony/Balime, and to support combat squads with anything they might not find on the battlefield (non-standard ammo, medkits, freshly repaired guns/armour...). This requires no skills at all (though high STR helps if moving on foot), the mot important thing is them being cheap. Shank, Haywire, Reuban, Skitz, Raffi... these guys go here.

[Updated on: Sun, 29 January 2017 17:02]




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Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348563 is a reply to message #348546] Sun, 29 January 2017 23:38 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Vincent J. Claymore

 
Messages:269
Registered:February 2011
bouchacha wrote on Sun, 29 January 2017 05:38
After thinking about this more, I think that a universal inventory would indeed be a great idea. The way to balance it would be to tie it to militia presence; any location where you've trained non-mobile militia should allow you access to this magic chest where you can store infinite items. It makes sense from a lore standpoint because militias need supply lines and high-end mercs would easily outsource the menial task of trucking items over to others.

In addition to the great suggestions that have already been made. I have a knack for logistics and organisation and I might give you a few tips on how to make the strategic part of JA2 1.13 both fun and efficient. If you wan't, just give me a message and we can have a chat on skype or teamspeak and I'll give you a few tipps.
Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348632 is a reply to message #348563] Wed, 01 February 2017 20:14 Go to previous messageGo to next message
bouchacha
Messages:6
Registered:October 2013
Location: District of Columbia
Lots of good replies in this thread. I still wish there was a universal inventory chest
Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348637 is a reply to message #348632] Wed, 01 February 2017 21:49 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Gorro der GrĂ¼ne

 
Messages:1568
Registered:March 2009
Location: Broadwurschd-City
actually I (as some others) like the micromanagement part as well as all that "unnessary" noncombat



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Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348657 is a reply to message #348637] Thu, 02 February 2017 09:19 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Xafloz

 
Messages:74
Registered:December 2016
Toying with LBEs essentially MOLLE items gives me a lot of fun too. That is not nightmare it is enjoyment happy

[Updated on: Thu, 02 February 2017 09:19]

Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348663 is a reply to message #348657] Thu, 02 February 2017 11:34 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Vincent J. Claymore

 
Messages:269
Registered:February 2011
Now that you mention it... I have only now started to look into the modular LBEs... is there anyone here who'd like to give me a run-through about that? I have kind of figured out how the 3.11 stuff works, but the basic rigs seem to have more spaces than you can actually fill... so if someone wanted to invest a few min and give me a quick tutorial via skype our such, that'd be awesome!
Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348667 is a reply to message #348663] Thu, 02 February 2017 11:52 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Xafloz

 
Messages:74
Registered:December 2016
Not using Skype recently and my spoken English is not accepted for myself nowadays...and not feeling like an expert, but sent me a PM and we can discuss if I can help you.
Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348669 is a reply to message #348667] Thu, 02 February 2017 12:23 Go to previous messageGo to next message
grim

 
Messages:288
Registered:July 2006
Location: France
Indeed, the modular vests cannot carry "more", but you can customize your load-out with precision. It's clearly not for everyone but the perfectionist ;)
Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348671 is a reply to message #348669] Thu, 02 February 2017 13:34 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Vincent J. Claymore

 
Messages:269
Registered:February 2011
I'm interested if they can be better than what I have. I have kinda set my default equipment to be HK MSG Sniper rifles for my snipers (best all-rounders, I think) and the G36 RAS MG / SCAR-L MG for all others (still have to check which is better), which means there is currently no way around using the SAW Pouch for ammo, the MP Holster for the sidearm (universally MP7), the Russian 106 vest (clearly the best vest imho) and then the TIMMS-bag and backpack. I guess Flugente is wiser in not giving combat mercs a backpack to avoid having to drop it when ambushed, but I like to have the possibility to haul around additional gear, e.g. night fightung equipment and weapons (HK SL9SD + P90/FiveseveN silenced)...
Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348672 is a reply to message #348671] Thu, 02 February 2017 15:32 Go to previous messageGo to next message
silversurfer

 
Messages:2080
Registered:May 2009
Russian 106 and German Flecktarn are my favorites for wood camo but a TT Modular Vest is better in terms of customization. The Large Modular Thigh Rig is also very nice for a custom pocket layout although we already have lots of Thigh Rigs with lots of pocket combinations available. I simply select LBE based on mercs requirements and there is no "this is the best LBE for all mercs" LBE - which is a good thing because uber gear is boring and unrealistic.



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Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348674 is a reply to message #348672] Thu, 02 February 2017 17:16 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Vincent J. Claymore

 
Messages:269
Registered:February 2011
Yes, absolutely. I wouldn't want a "best" LBE, really. Although, I have to say that the TIMS-Combo-Suite really renders all other backpacks utterly useless, as obviously there is no backpack with more space than the TIMS-Backpack plus combat pack. So at least that one is a true no-brainer. There are only two other combat packs and I guess the 3-day pack is the superiour one when compared to the Blackhawk pack.
Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348800 is a reply to message #348674] Fri, 10 February 2017 16:22 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Yfrite

 
Messages:11
Registered:July 2014
Location: Russia
As for the original topic, I had the same problem some time ago. Being a gun nut, I wanted to use all of the guns available, but got stuck with them numbers. Guns like G3, G36, M4\M16 and SG550 were way too similar and I ended up just picking the toughest ones I had at the moment (Bushmaster for 6.8 did the trick). But then I looked at Ivan wielding M4 and it seemed a bit wrong, so I tried to add a bit of extra terms to the game. After some time it formed up into something like this:
- first of all, it depends on the nationality of a merc. Ivan and Igor get the Russian arms, Grunty is good with all the HK stuff, Americans pick their favourite M4\M16 etc.
- Miguel rebels reminded me of Cuba, so they got a lot of WP weapons as well, but Carlos made me think a bit more of it. When it comes to rifles, it's an easy solution, but pistols... So I decided to take a closer look on their characters. And that ended with Carlos having DMRs or some heavy hitting stuff like FN FAL, Dimitry got a Colt Anaconda in his pouch, while Hamous was packing AKM and Springfield ROFL (he said he likes that gun himself, who am I to judge?)
- When it comes to picking what I need in different versions of the same gun, like M4-M16 or G36-G36c-G36k, I was a bit stuck. Then I tried browsing different sites and magazines to get a hold on that military tactics nowadays and tried to form some strict roles. For example, there are two shooters. One of them should do fine for middle distance - he gets a scope and a full scale M16, the other is good for CQB, so he gets M4 with a collimator. A medic should stay close to the fighters, let him have something light and accurate - shortened versions would do. A heavie (usually Grizzly) should have something packing a good punch (hello, movie stereotypes) so 7.62x51 rifles are his choice. Didn't want to use bolt rifles actually, so there appeared three types of snipers at the same time - one goes as a straightforward long range classic sniper, bolt rifle and x7-10 scope, picking the baddies from afar; the other is packed with DMR or semi-auto sniper rifle, providing cover for the sniper and dealing with those who are closer than sniper's effective range; third one usually was working with the rest of the squad, moving with them and taking out the targets which survived the first shots of the main fire team.
And when it came to trophies, I simply sold everything which was less than 90-95% condition treshold. Accuracy and damage were the main deal, after all. Don't want my sniper missing all the time with that nasty -15 to accuracy penalty. Never really got cluttered after that.
But yet this was just some of my looks at this game, and I totally agree with what was said before - this game is about role play, so you may want to add a bit of your own terms for that, which will somehow help you sort out all the weaponry and equipment.
Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #348808 is a reply to message #348542] Sat, 11 February 2017 06:43 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Onin

 
Messages:10
Registered:September 2016
- random drop vs drop all
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-tons of guns vs not tons of guns
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- I try to get the 2 vehicles asap and access to Tony (in a roleplaying perspective, still makes sense that you can talk to native mercs or civilians and they would know where to find these. "i saw an icecream truck in these places X,X,X", "there's a guy selling a hummer near Balime") but you'd have to do the gas quest asap too and 10k$$$.

Or, i just carry what i can. This frustrates me, leaving all those unused loot and not turning them into cash. And using vulnerable mules is kind of scary for me. But sometimes you just have to make do.

btw.. anyone else reminded of "The Smashing Pumpkins - Today" whenever you encounter the truck?

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- my sequence in inventory checking, you'll probably develop your own
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- other tips
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I get how you feel, but i guess its the price of the depth of the game. You might also find some other stuff to tinker with in the INI to cater to your needs.

getting the 2 vehicles asap story
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Re: How do you deal with the nightmare that is inventory logistics?[message #349091 is a reply to message #348808] Thu, 02 March 2017 07:42 Go to previous message
funk

 
Messages:42
Registered:March 2008
I'm simple man when it comes to logistics, Quote:
bellum se ipsum alit
the war will feed it's self, and with drop all on it does you are never with out a gun or ammo.
But i do try to be standardised, and use only 3 calibres 5.45, 7.62x51 and 40mm VOG-25 grenades.
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