0:20 - He says he had very little sleep in the week before the event, but doesn't explain why.
0:30 - The night before the event someone dropped out.
0:38 - Someone else revealed the night before that they didn't understand that it was a synchronous event, and they said they would do it at 4pm their time, which would be after the event had finished. The guy said he'd try to get up, but then Lloyd hadn't heard from him the morning of the event.
1:30 - He says organizing the event is much more than what one person should be doing.
1:36 - He says he has lots of scribbled notes.
1:38 - He has the battlefield laid out on his bed.
2:00 - He says he's going to have to rely on his players to be honest because he can't keep track of what they're up to.
2:10 - Running a corp-level military engagement is a lot of work. He points out that in r/l a general would have a lot of staff helping to coordinate everyone.
2:43 - In the 4 hours of gameplay, he was sent 839 emails. Each player only sent an average of 18.6 emails, one every 13 minutes. There were 45 players. He was getting an email every 17 seconds.
3:07 - He shows a cooker timer that can time four things at once. He gives as an example of its use a player who wants to go from one place to another, and Lloyd has decided it will take him 20 minutes, Lloyd can start the timer and take a note of what had happened.
3:37 - He learned why radio discipline is important: it forces people to give the information necessary for the recipient to act on it. For example, a player would email Lloyd and say, "My clock's run out of time", and Lloyd is left wondering, "Who is this? Where is he? Which side is he on? Has he achieved his objective? Which objective is he talking about? Did he achieve it under time? Did he go over time?"
4:08 - He shows himself during the event, where he's gotten an email from a player who had to drive his wife to the hospital as she'd gone into labor.
4:27 - He says there were surprise parachute landings and changes in weather, boats turning up, things being spotted from aircraft. He says he wrote briefs for the commanders in chief of 15,000 words each. He says he put in a lot of 'nasty traps' for the commanders. He gives an example of a commander who knew that he had a maverick commando commander doing a boat landing, and then Lloyd sent him an RAF transcript where an RAF pilot says they've spotted some unidentified boats, asking for permission to engage, and then the RAF ground officer says, "They're not on my charts, permission granted", and the c-in-c had to email back telling the RAF not to engage. Then later Lloyd sent the c-in-c another message saying some boats had been spotted, and the c-in-c (correctly) cleared the RAF to engage.
5:16 - The scenario was this: there were several bridges that the Allies needed to capture (they didn't succeed). He shows pictures from various players of their tabletop set-up. it looks like there were a lot of individual battles going on, similar to Combat Mission. He says the players seemed to find it more than the usual wargame. "They were aware that they were part of something bigger. Reinforcements kept turning up on their table, or they were ordered to send reinforcements somewhere else, or things moved across their table on their way somewhere else. They were all of course screaming for air support and tank support, and strangely, almost nobody asked for reinforcements of infantry, but there you go."
5:54 - He says some people have suggested that he run these commercially. He then cuts to a shot of him 3 hours in with lots of unresponded-to emails, looking totally overwhelmed.
6:10 - He seems to conclude with the feeling that it was a success, saying "It wasn't so bad" in a cheery voice.
6:13 - The end-title relates that "the German C-in-C accidentally put his main reserves right next to the Allied paratroop landings he didn't know about."
Captain Hindsight's Notes for Next Time:
Lindybeige you've discovered by accident one of the biggest problems military staffs encounter in modern warfare. As you correctly pointed out, the whole point of a staff is to sort through the myriad of information to help the commander better make decisions. You played the role of the administrative, intelligence, operations, logistics, 2IC, and commander [for both sides mind you], all of whom are busy enough in war doing their own jobs, and you successfully coordinated all of this across many time zones which is a feat in itself.
There are many ways you could mitigate some of the problems you faced in this exercise (if you ever wanted to do it again) by standardizing email templates (yes, unfortunately it's come to that in real war - but that is what good staff officers do) and laying ground rules for emails, or develop different reports that fit a few important situations. That will cut down on the amount of useless emails you receive (and many reports in real war are actually useless).
Or you could just enlist the help of some people to assist in running the bloody thing.
Anyways nice work! You have reinvigorated my interest in Crossfire. Thanks for that!
Steve - a former staff officer.
I'm probably saying this because I'm a programmer but if you were to do this again I would suggest finding a way to automate part of the process if possible. There's no point on overwhelming yourself if a computer can do part of it for you. It's probably easier than you think and just a minor automation would save you a lot of frustration. If you need a programmer I can assure you that there are lots that would give some time to making a little tool and it shouldn't cost a thing. You're contacting people internationally anyway so chances are that in this modern age there would be at least one willing volunteer amongst them to work with you.
you should look into Roll20.net
LEARN TO USE TEAMSPEAK! - we done 40 player raids in wow that toke 5+ hours, and with moderators and room leaders its much more conducive to what you want. (and it has text chat if u dont have a mic)
If it was a corp-level operation (2 divisions, or 6 companies, or ~18 platoons), and there were ~22 players per side, it seems players were controlling platoons. But the Crossfire website says the game is meant for company-level wargaming, and Lloyd's own intro to Crossfire seems to show him commanding a company.