2010-07-05 Counter-attacking Defenders and additional French units Zoom

The next time you attack an objective as part of a coordinated assault, be careful! If the defenders have been issued heavy armor units and have sufficient space behind their position to hide these units, they may launch a counter-attack with these armor units against your deployed attack formation.

A counter-attacking unit picks a position away and behind the position to defend. It waits and defends there, and is also more likely to avoid artillery fire and air strikes against the main position. As soon as the counter-attacking unit receives a message that hostile ground forces have been spotted in front of the main defensive section, it will launch a counter-attack at full speed. Upon completion of the counter-attack, the unit will resume defensive duty at the main objective.

I've experienced a few of my attacks being completed disrupted by a counter-attack in the flank.


Counter-attacks are automatically planned for defending units under the following conditions:

  • it includes heavy armor or similar units that fight better on the move than from staic positions;
  • sufficient space is available behind and to the side of the position to be defended on the map chosen for the battle (otherwise the planner won't be able to pick a good position for the counter-attacking units);
  • the terrain offers maneuver space for a heavy armor unit to strike in the flank an attacker in front of the defender's position.

Note that the defending units do not know where the attacker will strike; the only information available to the defenders is a single location indicating the 'center-of-gravity' of the attacker. The detailed attacker order-of-battle and initial positions are not available. Hence, the defenders analyze the surroundings of their position and set up defensive sectors to block the most likely avenues of attack.

In the 'Editing examples', I have explained how to set up a defense with a counter-attacking unit.

Counter-attack plan illustrated in-game

French AMX 10RCs counter-attacking

French units from the ADO mod in action

Additional French units.

Both the Hexagon and ADO mod teams have released units: the VAB and AMX-10 RC armored vehicles by Hexagon, and infantry (centre Europe, desert, and alpes camouflage and frogmen) by ADO. By default, the Hexagon and ADO units are members of different factions (Independent and BLUFOR), which makes the hard to combine with the default mission editor (this can be fixed by editing the resulting .sqm mission with a text editor).

PlannedAssault now includes these units, places all these units under the same faction (BLUFOR) in generated missions. It thus provides an easy way to combine Hexagon VAB's with ADO infantry.



Web front-end and planner have been updated to versions 1.28 and 1.11 respectively.



2009-11-21 Multi-pronged and flanking attacks Zoom

After an upgrade of the AI attack advisor, PlannedAssault creates multi-pronged attacks including flanking attacks. Choosing a two pronged attack, flanking or straight, is as easy as picking the corresponding type of 'Clear' objective.

For a two group attack, the planner looks to the positions of ground combat units and transports in order to determine the groups. You control group assignment by placing units close to those units with whom it should form a group, and far from other units.


Fire support units, such close air support and artillery units, are not split across the two groups and thus can freely be placed on the map.

With the groups chosen, the planner splits the objective into just as many objective areas as there are attack groups. For each group, the planner will construct multiple avenues of approach into the objective area, taking into account formation width and attack direction relative to the main attack. Finally, the planner will evaluate the combinations of each group's avenues of approach, and pick the most optimal one, based on criteria such as separation (we don't want the groups to run into each other during the attack) and relative approach angles.

Technically, the AI attack advisor is capable of N-group attacks, with multiple direct and flank attacks. For the time being, the advisor is locked down to N = 2, thus just two prongs. Three and more prongs consume more compute power, and offer little benefit for 8-unit missions.


A zip file containing the three variants of this mission (with the player being an observer) is available here. Vanilla Arma suffices to run this mission.


The planner and web site now run versions 0.97 and 1.0.2 respectively.