Suggestions for training scenarios for my MC to foreshadow his command ability.

#1
Okay, so here's the scoop:
My MC at the start of my story is a rookie member of a police/anti-terrorist organization.
Now he has had basic training and already graduated the academy, my MC still lacks field experience.
This doesn't mean he doesn't have baseline skills, I mentioned he has several credentials and scored high in tactics and planning.
However, I do want to apply the show don't tell rule a little here and actually show him able to take command despite his lack of field experience.
Now, luckily for him, my MC lives in a high-tech society and things like advanced holograms are entirely within the limits of his world.
I can put him in charge here (along with a few more experienced officers to oversee his skills) without it risking real life people and or property.
Now note this is not a military fiction story, it's a science fiction/action/superhero themed story, so I am not aiming 100% realism here.
But I do want to bounce some ideas to throw at my main character so that we can see his command ability without it risking the lives of his fellow officers.
Now as for the setting, well the story mainly takes place in a futuristic city, so things like robots and the like are not totally out of place.
Still, I do wish suggestions don't come up with something crazy like my MC on an asteroid fighting aliens, that's not the tone of the story.
I already have one scenario ready, his first test is to see how he handles a hostage situation.
Since his unit usually deals with this sort of thing, this made sense for the first test.
Now, since I don't want to check off a standard Mary sue test point of having my MC succeed first try, I made him fail this first test.
The second test, I kind of want him to win, as I want to show him as at least able to learn from his mistakes and evolve.
But what is this second test?
Well that's where you guys come in, I do want this training session of my story to be at least somewhat interesting and fitting into my MC's story.
And the main theme is well my MC growing from rookie to commander level material, this of course does not come easy.
This becomes even more true when the superhero stuff kicks in, as even when he gets his powers, he still faces failure now and then.
Still, the second test must tie in somehow, and I am willing to listen to your ideas.
There will be a third test and my MC will lose but then again everyone loses that one as I go Kobayashi Maru on the whole team, so I need something that fits in between these two failures.
I don't want to give my MC an easy win or anything, but I want to throw him a bone.

Re: Suggestions for training scenarios for my MC to foreshadow his command ability.

#2
You could make the hostage scenario the second test. 

I'm not so sure it it's realistic to let a guy with no field experience handle a hostage situation. He should probably have a bit of field experience working under someone else in high-stake situations like that before they are entrusted to him to handle. That way you also get to play with his crushed self-esteem with a higher-risk mission! :D 

Re: Suggestions for training scenarios for my MC to foreshadow his command ability.

#3

Haust Wrote: You could make the hostage scenario the second test. 

I'm not so sure it it's realistic to let a guy with no field experience handle a hostage situation. He should probably have a bit of field experience working under someone else in high-stake situations like that before they are entrusted to him to handle. That way you also get to play with his crushed self-esteem with a higher-risk mission! :D
Well, my wager was that he already had hostage training beforehand at the academy.

My rationale for having him lose the first test was to give him a setback to overcome later.
After all, I made mention this was a more intense training session than usual.
I mean, I didn't want his first training something menial or basic, he already has had his training beforehand as he could not graduate the academy without it.
So it doesn't make sense for him to do push-ups or something like that, this test is mainly assessing his mental skills and his placement on his task force.
He's gone beyond the base level stuff, this training is more intense on purpose.

Re: Suggestions for training scenarios for my MC to foreshadow his command ability.

#4
I guess it depends on the training, but an exercise is always pretty different from a real-life situation with real stakes. I can't say I have any experience with this, but I and two friends went hunting once. One was an experienced hunter, and the other had a lot of training and was a great shot with a lot of book knowledge but it was his first real hunt. 

He tried to shoot a moose but couldn't fire because adrenaline made his hands shake so much. That's a very real and common phenomena and your MC's superiors would know it. The older guy took the beginner out with him two more times, just sitting there and not even aiming his gun, before he stopped shaking. 

Re: Suggestions for training scenarios for my MC to foreshadow his command ability.

#5
Well I don't want to spend 800 chapters building my character or his skills dragging the story down with needless training montages, endless missions that don't have much bearing on the story as I kind of want the story to kick off earlier on.
This stuff with my MC as a police officer stuff is there for setup, taking something that is benign so that when the main story begins we have everything established.
My goal is to push the plot forward here, so instead of meandering through chapters where my MC does nothing but train/ give parking tickets/ eat doughnuts/file paperwork, my MC's story can begin.
I mean, I did have a structure here of:
Chapter 1: MC intro/ universe intro
Chapter 2: villain's intro/ training session
Chapter 3: MC and his partner go on their first patrol
Chapter 4: the inciting incident happens here for the story proper, during his first mission, my MC gets injured badly.
Chapter 5: flashback chapter, as hey if I am going to have the obligatory flashback chapter, I want to do it while my MC is unconscious. This way we can explore his psyche too.
Chapter 6: My MC volunteers for the operation that makes him a superhero, and the story officially begins.

Now yes I could set up maybe another chapter of training, but I don't want to bog the story down.
My goal here is to have a (mostly) fast-paced story, and I needed a quick solution.
Having my MC display his skills on a highly sophisticated simulator seemed like the best option, as I don't want to slow my pace down to reach some arbitrary realism quota.
I have to have some middle ground, so I took the best route for me without risking lives.
I mean I still have to show my MC as competent and capable of command somehow as when he becomes a superhero he leads a team of other superheroes.
Sure yes no simulation no matter how good it is will be like the real thing, I get that, but I can't spend a lot of time dragging the story down for 700 chapters while my MC gets all the skills he requires.
The intent of this test is merely to evaluate his skills as a member of this team, of course when they do the real thing he will not be in charge.
This test is merely there to foreshadow his skills later on.
I mean, I don't want to have him some sort of vet on the force here, as I like the theme of youth cut down before it could reach its potential.
Plus, I have the issue of needing another training session later on, so he can train learning how to control his superpowers.
I don't want my story bogged down with 800 training chapters, have my character become a superhero then another 800 chapters.
Would make the story boring and tedious.

Re: Suggestions for training scenarios for my MC to foreshadow his command ability.

#7
Well I still have to show my MC's skills somehow, I mean if he's a rookie he sure can't take charge in a real world crisis, can he?
And what about the show dont tell rule?
And what about avoiding the "mary sue" issue?
I mean people moaned about how Rey learned the force without training, so obviously people like training montages and wanted the force awakens to be 9 hours long or whatever.
I am trying to hit a balance here so that the "mary sue" factor doesnt get barked in my face, if I show my MC's skills off and implied he had training beforehand i feel I can get away with most of the shortcuts I have to make to get my story going.

Re: Suggestions for training scenarios for my MC to foreshadow his command ability.

#8
Why not have his show this ability while out on his first patrol? It doesn't have to be something big. Maybe there's a kid stuck in a tree and a group of people trying to help that he had to organise, maybe there was a burglary and one of the offenders lurker in the house so he has to deal with that while his colleague is out/tracking the other guy/etc.

You could even put it in the inciting incident if there aren't too many other higher ranked officers. Maybe he even helps during the inciting incident but then his decision causes harm after initial success (he could be separated from higher ranked officers/communications could be difficult and he's with a group of rookies). This gives him an even stronger motivation and character arc.

Just some ideas. If you want simulation ideas: try something where he has to make a judgement about saving one group over another? Like there's been an accident and he can save the child or a group of 5 - that could also lead to character growth: he chooses the larger group which is the "right" choice but feels really icky inside at the fact that he "let a child die" or something.
Other ideas: stand off with an armed criminal? Some kind of raid?

Re: Suggestions for training scenarios for my MC to foreshadow his command ability.

#9
Well when I say superhero elements I am not aiming for silver age stuff where he helps little ladies cross the street and saving a cat from a tree after gets superpowers.
Now as for the size of my organization, well it's fairly sized.
It's best to think of it as a hybrid of police/military structure, with one centralized commanding officer who oversees various precincts.
Each precinct has its own captain, commander, and lieutenant.
Now, since I don't want to juggle 8000 characters, I narrowed my opening chapters to one precinct.
This way I can keep my cast tight as once again this isn't a military fiction, I use that genre as a starting point.
Now when the inciting incident happens once more, I isolated it to this one precinct as so far my villains have not justified full force... yet.
Oh sure, they are causing just enough trouble to justify the need for a task force of some kind.
It's mainly their tactics and strategy that has caused my police force to go into a tizzy, they operate more like a military operation than a gang of common crooks.
They strike fast and leave little behind, thus why this task force exists.
Now yes, this group will get some nasty weapons soon, and it's those weapons that push my MC to become a superhero.
We are not talking about guns or bombs, but fully armed military grade mech suits, something that my police force is fully unprepared for.
its this plot point is why my MC does what he does, as he wants to save his city from this newfound threat.
This is why he forms his own superhero team with his partner from the force, who also got hurt in my stories inciting incident.
Basically in laymen terms I am kind of mixing the plot of robocop, with a bit of mobile suit Gundam (though my mech suits are more the size of tanks) with bits of Iron man and The Avengers thrown in.
(probably the best way i can sum up my story without spoiling it)

Re: Suggestions for training scenarios for my MC to foreshadow his command ability.

#10
It sounds like you have a very clear idea of what needs to happen in your story and where you want to go with it, so I'm afraid that it'll be difficult for people here to suggest ideas that fit 100%. Maybe try looking up some real life news that involve the police and adapt them to fit your story for the training scenarios you want. It would be cool if the training scenario he passes has something to do with the inciting incident i.e. it's a similar situation, so he feels like he has kind of a handle on it and then it blows up in his face. Good luck with figuring it out!

Re: Suggestions for training scenarios for my MC to foreshadow his command ability.

#11
Well its not like I am not open for suggestion still, I mean you kind of had a decent suggestion with this:

1994owl Wrote: If you want simulation ideas: try something where he has to make a judgement about saving one group over another? Like there's been an accident and he can save the child or a group of 5 - that could also lead to character growth: he chooses the larger group which is the "right" choice but feels really icky inside at the fact that he "let a child die" or something.
Other ideas: stand off with an armed criminal? Some kind of raid?
I could work with this, though it would be more suited for my final "Kobayashi maru" test

I mean if there has to be a test before the hostage test I am open for it, but I did want to establish that my MC has all his basic training down, so simple tests like him climbing ropes would not do at this stage of his development.
He's got at least three years of academy work under his belt and that has to count for something, sure it may not fully prepare him for what is to come, but it is a theme of the early stage of the story of my MC failing a bit before him getting a handle on things.
This way he doesn't come off as a Mary Sue/Gary Stu, but at the same time I can still show him as competent even in this early stage.
I mean, I already gave him a "sue" point by making him smart, but I countered this by making him book smart and not having any real world experience so far.
His under experience can make him a little vulnerable to failure and while by all accounts he can overcome this as time goes on, that would be more of his overreaching character arc.
Still, I want to give him something to show that he can be a good commanding officer, so I need a scenario that fits his unit.
So having him rescue kids from trees doesn't fit his unit, sure he will do it, and It's not beneath him, but it's not his position in this team.
My MC mainly joins the task force for two reasons:
1: he wants to prove himself as an officer.
2: he wants to help stop the crime wave my villains are causing.

Now, my MC does have motivations for wanting to do both as:
1: He is the son of a police officer who died in the line of duty, his father was his hero as a kid.
And 2: well, the anti-terrorist/police force he has joined is becoming filled with hatred and corruption. He hopes that stopping these criminals will bring his force back to its senses.

Like any good science fiction I am using our real world as inspiration for what is happening in my story, here is the base preface:
My story takes place on an advanced alien world and 12 years after a war between two nations broke out.
My MC and his city underwent basically a 911/Pearl Harbor style attack when a nation called Kossik  (Basically Soviet Russia blended with Imperial Japan and a dab of fascist Italy) began said war.
12 years passed peace has come and the city is almost recovered (as again advanced aliens here)
Still many on both sides still hate each other and a splinter group from Kossik has come to my MC's country to reignite the war.
The villain's crime wave has ignited old hatreds and people who have come to my MC's nation I call New Galsa, (basically an America/England/Canada analog) now find themselves victims of hate and violence by both the locals and the police force.
This makes my MC feel kind of stuck in the middle, while he once hated the Kossikans as their attack cost him his father and home, he knows not all Kossikans are evil and now wants to protect the innocent Kossikans who live in the city.
Just think of the way Islamic people were treated in the US after 9/11 or the Japanese after Pearl Harbor, that's the theme I am going for (plus it makes some commentary on some current goings-on IRL police brutality)
My MC wants to overcome all this and perhaps become a hero like his father... sadly, that goes all pear shaped when the mechs come out.
I start playing up themes of escalation of when the villains get better weapons, the cops want better weapons.
But then comes the abuse of said weapons, and my MC decides to abandon his role as a cop and become a vigilante, as when both cause trouble for innocents the world needs a better class of hero.

Re: Suggestions for training scenarios for my MC to foreshadow his command ability.

#17
Make him go to leadership school.

Quote:We are not talking about guns or bombs, but fully armed military grade mech suits, something that my police force is fully unprepared for. 

You better have a good reason that the reader can believe of why the military or the paramilitary organizations didn't immediately roll on anyone who's pulling out full on mil-spec mech suits.

That would INSTANTLY  bring out the High Threat Response Teams, the National Guard, the ATF/FBI/NSA and the spec ops teams.

So you're going to need a GOOD reason for the government not be rolling their own power armor to crush these guys, crush them fast, and find out who smuggled them in, who provided them, and who ultimately sourced them.

Because that goes from crime in one city to an international incident the second the EPROM in the suit's molycircs show another country's factory as it's OEM of origin.