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I believe one of the core issues/differences is the fundamental openness of the terrain provided by ARMA. The GR maps were always structured so that a relatively small team could, by careful positioning, control key bottle-necks and access routes. This allows a small team to effectively control the situation and focus its firepower toward the expected enemy encounter. Our process of planning tournament missions (either as players or as designers) always focused on how we could achieve that control or reward teams that did that.

In ArmA, there are very few functional bottle-necks to be found, and the AI are reasonably smart about flanking your position. So teams are forced to be very attentive of their flanks and rear, and thus tend to engage at range so they can observe flankers before they become a threat. Establishing this level of security for your team requires significantly more effort and patience (and often manpower) than was required by GR maps. I think this is what changes the fundamental feel of the combat.

For me, I find the ambiance of ArmA (with mods) to be significantly much better than GR ever was. The thing I have not yet seen succeed in ArmA are the stealth style missions that were relatively straight forward to script in GR -- the ones where you were on the edge of your seat wondering if you hid quickly enough to avoid detection, and even if you failed there was some chance you could fight your way out. Most ArmA stealth missions usually fail badly as soon as anything goes wrong with your group quickly surrounded and annihilated. Granted my colleagues and I have all been to busy in RL to really figure out if you can actually do this in ArmA II (we decided it was just not really possible in the ArmA I maps a long time ago), and we are obviously biased toward this type of mission, but you never know we may give it a go again soon.

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