If you started to read this part of the guide, you are probably thinking about being a leader. Before we see how will you deal with such responsibility let us first say – thank you! It is a duty we welcome you to perform, the leader’s slot is NOT reserved only for CiA members. If you think you are not good enough to lead – nobody is born a good leader but you can become one and we encourage you to do it through practice with us. Be sure we will respect your authority!
Being a leader gives you control over your squad/team. From start to finish your say is final. It starts from the slot screen.
Usually we don’t order people to take specific slots, but you can demand that somebody takes a specific and important slot such as a medic. When we have multiple teams you can order people to evenly take slots from each team, or, if there is not enough people to fill all of them, you can order players to fill just few of them, leaving one or more team without human players.
Sometimes it’s better to have one full team of players than two or more teams with only few players. In some of the missions you can choose time of day in which the mission takes place or some other parameters.
Here is where your planning starts, although in some cases you can brief your men once the mission starts. Here you can do the following:
Plan and draw routes for each squad
Prioritize the objectives and choose in which order they are accomplished
Assign specific roles to players if needed
Predict possible scenarios and make a plan how to deal with them
Decide to go stealthy (silenced weapons) or loud
Once the mission starts your orders will be specific. “Go over there” or “engage that machine gunner”. You will have to orientate on the map and keep track of your team. You can decide if deviation from the original plan is needed due to circumstances.
Your team will report targets, their behaviour and any other significant events. It’s up to you to process it and decide how to react. Reaction to events can be critical. Quickly respond when situation develops and threatens to get out of hand. Sometimes retreat is the best option. Remain in control and keep it by not making too hasty decisions.
When there are multiple teams, each team shall communicate using its own frequency. You will be ordering only leaders using the long range radios and they will order their team members.
However, in certain situations you will want to have all players on the same frequency.
Don’t sprint ahead of your team. Move in normal jogging speed to allow your men to catch up by sprinting.
Know where you are at all times. If you are not confident about your navigation skills, assign a point man to navigate for you – not knowing how to navigate should not be a reason to avoid leading.
You will have to handle unit formations while you’re leading. Choose a formation based on the likelihood of enemy contact, the expected direction to the enemy, and the terrain. The table below can help you decide which formation to choose.
*Insert table here*
When you are leading a team which is subordinated to a mission commander, you will have as much freedom over your team as a leader can have. You only have to accomplish tasks given by the mission commander whose orders may go into details but it will usually be just left to you to choose on how to accomplish them. For example, the mission commander may assign you to take your team and “capture that barn to the East”. In that case it will be up to you how to approach the task in order to accomplish it.
When controlling multiple teams allow an extent of freedom when assigning tasks to team leaders.If you will try to micromanage, you will be over your head, frustrate everybody, and probably will not achieve your goals. Instead, provide your intentions in a more general way. For example, when assaulting an enemy camp, instead of drawing the exact route for the team leader and telling him which weapons to use, simply tell him – “Bravo, capture the enemy camp” and let him decide how to approach his mission. This will not only remove workload from you, it will also increase the chances of success as in most cases the guy on the field knows better than his remote commander how to do things.
If you ar commanding a larger team (say, 6 or more people), it might be beneficial to separate the teams into multiple smaller groups with the help of the team color commands. For example, consider you have a team of 8. Split them in two fireteams (four each, say, red and green). Assign a subordinate team leader to each colored team, and give orders to the teams instead of the individual soldiers. This makes it easier for you to manage and command larger teams.
Vehicles are powerful tools, especially armored vehicles. They yield devastating firepower and powerful optics. However, remember that vehicles are very sensitive to infantry rocket fire, be it guided, or low end RPG. Many vehicles can be disabled even in one RPG rocket hit and it must affect your judgement on how to use them on the battlefield.
In terrains where visibility is limited, like forests and urban environments, never move vehicles without infantry support. Infantry should cover the vehicles by guarding their flanks and spotting targets for them. Don’t advance a vehicle into a position that the infantry has yet to clear it. The infantry should spot targets for the vehicle, secure the intended vehicle firing position, and only then the vehicle should take it and open fire on the spotted targets.
When moving in the open, where visibility is clear, the infantry is in a disadvantage due to lack of cover and concealment. In this case move the infantry through the open only once the vehicle is in a position to cover their advance.
Sometimes you’ll have a wing commander who’ll receive your orders and task the individual pilots, other times the individual pilots will be under your direct control. In either case, they’ll normally be on the same long-range frequency as everyone else, so you’ll just raise them on that using their callsign.
Like vehicles, helicopters and jets are highly sensitive to anti-aircraft fire so use them carefully! If possible, observe their area of operation and remove any AA threats before sending them in.
Often these air assets are vital to completing the mission and can’t be replaced if shot down, so in most cases you should instruct your pilots to prioritize their safety, avoiding threats even at the cost of disengaging the enemy. They can always come back around for another pass when it’s safer.
When mission ends share your impressions about the mission, tactics, different possible approaches, what caused mission failure if it happened, or simply congratulate your comrades on a successful mission. We don’t usually talk much about the mission right after it ends but there is a debriefing thread on our forum where we share our impressions. You are free to share yours.
Don’t let your team get distracted. If players lose focus, shout to make everyone start paying attention, but remain respectful. All team members must follow Communication rules as stated above in this guide.
Much of the leading is the same, there are some standard procedures that everyone follows, but there is also something special to learn from everyone. Observe how other players lead, and how their styles can be different. Since Arma is an open world game there are almost always more solutions for each situation. Try to find some new or more interesting way to deal with situations on the battlefield.
For example, take a look at what CiA member Variable said about leading:
That’s an interesting aspect – the balance between fun and an effective plan. We witnessed that conflict also on the arms dealer mission. Sometime completing the mission is easier using a simpler, less intense and less interesting approach. However, when it’s up to me when leading, I will ALWAYS prefer the more fun plan, even if it compromises our safety or the mission. Please remember that when I end up leading us all to our certain death hehe.
-- CiA Variable
Now, find out which is your way!