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Is Something Wrong with Night Ops, is NCTH Biased, and Other Questions about 1.13[message #354195] Tue, 31 July 2018 14:46 Go to next message

Registered:July 2018
Hi All,

I have played JA2 vanilla 3-4 times already, decided to try 1.13, it has been like 6 years since I played JA2. The amount of changes introduced in 1.13 is quite overwhelming

So, let me ask the most important questions first.

1. I remember devastating enemies with a night ops squad, my IMP had night ops, with night vision goggles it was quite easy to see enemies and kill them. Now in 1.13 I have a night ops IMP merc, using NVG Mark II. It seems like the NVGs do absolutely nothing, they can see maybe a couple tiles more, and that distance is easily covered by enemies so no advantage there. In fact my success in daylight has been much much better. What happened here?

2. Do enemies also use NCTH? My mercs at the moment all have decent rifles, Mini-14 some AK variants with an accuracy rating of about 68 and range of 36, rifles have 4x scopes, flash suppressors and bipods, I encounter enemies with some smg's low rate ARs and mostly pistols. They land their pistol shots quite commonly. They literally run to my face (6-8 tiles away from me), standing and fill me in with bullets when I have a pretty good cover. Yet my mercs tend to miss all 3 torso shots they get in a single turn when they are crouching or prone. My mercs with pistols would be lucky if they land a single pistol shot 5-6 tiles away from enemies, it is usually 1/15 or something.

3. Is there some sort of a comprehensive guide to 1.13. I think the mod deserves its own manual, I just found out that period "." in tactical changes the scope settings. What should one pay attention to, etc. Most LBE items on Bobby Rays for example does not provide useful info.

Would love to hear some tips and pointers to get more acquiainted.

Thanks in advance.
Re: Is Something Wrong with Night Ops, is NCTH Biased, and Other Questions about 1.13[message #354204 is a reply to message #354195] Thu, 02 August 2018 22:35 Go to previous messageGo to next message

Registered:January 2018
1) On Night Ops IMPs, I would say that your impression is relatively correct. v113, of any vintage, is harder at night even using NiteOps and is no longer as huge an advantage. I will mention some possible reasons, although I'm not exactly sure why, but did read a lot about it over the years.

a) NVG Mark I is a one "hex" bonus range. NVG Mark II is two "hex" bonus range for vision. NVG Mark I's are available to the enemy, on Easy Difficulty, right away, basically. So you will probably only have your advantage against the Garrision soldiers in the early going. Once the measures for game progress get the first tick, I believe that at least the Elites have availability of NVG Mark 2's. Point is, they have very soon anything you have. So expect no more than 1 hex advantage from gear, if you stay up to date.

cool Remember of course to change your sunglasses to NVG gear for night. When the sounds of the birds etc, when on the strategic map change, or the grid area becomes darker slightly, then you know to change. Shift N, I believe is the default to change all your mercs at once, dumping the sunglasses to Night Vision and vice-versa, as a toggle

c) Here is a key difference to note in v113 (all of its versions) over Vanilla. The A.I. now picks up muzzle flash better. So unless you are using a flash suppressor (which I believe removes all or most of muzzle flash) or using a Silencer (which removes some of it, I believe), you will probably be detected, and the enemy A.I. is much more aggressive now, especially if you have changed some things in the JA2options.ini in that particular directory for that version of the game (like Data-1.13 for the v113 version of the game). There are now, in the newer SCI builds for some time, options for having the A.I. avoid light and corpses, especially for elites. This will make it even harder, but more exciting, when the enemy is equipped with this knowledge.

d) What this means for me, is that Unless I choose two steps of Night Ops, it is dangerous out there at night. I find more crucial is to move small amounts with a good amount of flankers. After firing, it can be wise to retreat the shooter somewhat, and lead the enemy into flanker ranges, if using say a 4-6 man crew. Less than 3 can be suicide. Do not forget that SUPPOSEDLY rocks make sound and attract enemies, have not tried this much. Using BobRay gear, for example night vision sticks, and there is a higher level enhancement to this supposedly as well, can be now much more important. Using Roofs are still useful, some weather reduces all visibility further, lightning causes the whole game field to light up, and interrupts using the new Interrupt system are still very important, but not quite as powerful at early experience levels. By experience level 2 you'll notice more, but the interrupts don't start as fast, that is the enemy must move more and total action or movement points in your vision add up to a likelier interrupt. Also, the overall game range, on better weapons SEEMS to have been reduced. Vision trumps range at night.

e) Some other tips. It can be very useful to Look and Raise Your Weapon in direction you expect enemies to come from. The newer versions of v1.13 have a way to keep the weapon raised when moving forward. You'll have to experiment some to find it, but I believe you can now walk and run perhaps with your weapon raised. You are slightly more focused and vulnerable when attacked from unexpected direction, supposedly, but gain the weapon's accuracy built in on its stats with weapon raised, and saves raising weapon AP cost on interrupt or next turn fire.

2)On NCTH, I believe the enemies basically use the same calculations you do. On Easy they are accurate already. In general, it has always been said that v1.13 versions are all considered about 1 diff level higher than Vanilla. More than that, the A.I has been improved and will use all the rules often. Suppression can be very important. Vision at night is limited normally to less than even pistol range without assistance, so the A.I. knows to close and attack, and they use sound and muzzle flashes to know where you are. They can even throw night lights now, but are not as likely to do so on lower difficulties. It is crucial to manage range at night, and they can often get to your first visual hex and not trigger interrupts, so you can see where using a 2 step advantage is key. This makes rooftops and using visible light to corral enemies very important.

a) Extended Ear equipped can help hear the enemy as they approach, very useful. Keep an eye on your background bonuses to Mercs, which you can view from the Laptop by mousing over their traits, the area that has tabs for employment, gear, etc (one of those tabs). Often a background gives some edge on detection range or sound detection, etc.

cool Reading the ja2options.ini is the main way to know things, besides doing part a) above. Also, the main v1.13 website for the release versions has most of the info you need, if you read ALL the discussion points, and it used to refer to a page where Headrock explained much of the additions, also. In your installation if you go to Jagged Alliance 2/ Docs/ Manuals you should find a list for all keyboard shortcuts that is up to date. The release website, which does not have the latest v113 SCI versions which you find at the Bearpit is at http://ja2v113.pbworks.com/w/page/4218339/FrontPage. There you can find much info, although there have been changes made since then. Also there are various readme files such as the ChangeLog.txt files which document all the changes for all versions up to that version installed.


I personally recommend playing on EASY DIFFICULTY to start, but adjusting the Queen's forces and the Options to make it a bit more difficult. Pistol use early on is quite useful, since it saves on APs to raise, fire, and allows autofire if using certain machine pistols, like the Beretta 93 R (excellent with current stats) or the Stechkin Machine Pistol to use lesser ammo efficiently early on. Don't forget tracer ammo exists, as well as match ammo. In V1.13 it is very useful to use all gear. Noise is bad at night, consider finishing your last few steps in Stealth with weapon raised. Interrupts aren't as easy to get at early experience levels. Nite Ops are not as advantageous, but roofs at night, extended ear, using sound, using night sticks, so on, and using some Militia easily make up the difference. In general, going higher than Experienced Difficulty may be rough, but with experience anything is possible. I find that controlling an area just a bit around the corner (not right at the corner edge, which means they round it and then hopefully pop a bit into light, is good practice. Also, don't forget the old raised weapon and side step around corners especially on known contacts, less likely to get hit, can even stealth those if have APs. In other words, it can be managed. Just takes adjustment.

Most areas in GUI now, like in the inventory, surprisingly have mouseover keybind tips -- so play around and also check the installed manuals, just look around that installation. Hope this helps some, probably you know much of this.
Re: Is Something Wrong with Night Ops, is NCTH Biased, and Other Questions about 1.13[message #354205 is a reply to message #354204] Thu, 02 August 2018 22:39 Go to previous messageGo to next message

Registered:January 2018
Also, forgot to say that in newer SCI builds of v1.13 , the enemies now also have traits and skills as a possible option setting. This further makes them more like your own mercs. So that they can also be good at nite ops or equipped with special gear for their "class", yep they have classes possible or specialists. Pays to read that whole ja2options.ini and read all of Flugente's column on the BearPit. He often also makes YouTube videos showcasing the various features.
Re: Is Something Wrong with Night Ops, is NCTH Biased, and Other Questions about 1.13[message #354209 is a reply to message #354205] Fri, 03 August 2018 05:25 Go to previous message

Registered:January 2018
I found this in Skill_Settings.INI :

[Night Ops]

; Bonus to sight range in dark

; General bonus to hearing range (everytime)

; Added hearing range bonus when on dark places

;Increased chance to get interrupts during night time

;Stamina burn decreased

So that seems to be the default setting unless you customize it, at least at Easy Difficulty.
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