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domfluff last won the day on May 20

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  1. Bocage fighting is tough. You're fighting at close range, with fire that can come from any angle. Cover is everywhere, making reconnaissance difficult and fire superiority hard to achieve. Your avenues of approach are predictable, which means they can be covered with mines and machineguns - mistakes can be extremely fatal, very quickly. These are the problems, but also the solutions. Bocage fighting presents a series of tactical problems to solve, each slightly different. It's vitally important to engage with minimal forces. Scouting and recon-by-fire are very important, and the latter is pretty much the best use for armour. Making your own approach routes through Rhinos or engineers can be extremely powerful, but will give away your position. Ultimately, the "find, fix and flank" formula still holds, but the "fixing" can often have a more manoeuvrist meaning. You may not be able to fix them in position with fire, but you might be able to control the approach routes and trap them into a position passively. i.e., instead of suppressing them behind the hedgerow, if instead all of the connecting reinforcement routes are isolated, then they're just as fixed in position. Your flanking force is the lead element, and ideally they're coming from an unexpected direction. To throw grenades, area fire inside a 30m range - indirect weapons like grenades and mortars can target out of LOS, just to the other side of a hill crest or hedge. Try not to fixate on map "sides" - since the terrain is complex, an enemy that is spread across it's width will be isolated and unable to support themselves. That means that there will either be plenty of space to manoeuvre in, or any enemy you meet will be extremely weak. Caution is the thing. If you charge a squad across a covered field, they're dead. Proper scouting is vitally important, and moving by inches if necessary. "Hunt" is often not a great choice of movement order, since you'll typically be moving from cover to cover, and it's going to be more important to get to that cover, than to stop and fire on contact.
  2. In general: US halftracks are horribly vulnerable, and not good as a fighting position. They're fine if you can guarantee fire superiority, but that inherently limits the situations where this can be used. German halftracks have their gun shield, which can be quite effective. I do not unbutton these. Instead I allow the gunner to pop up and down as appropriate, minimising their exposure. The intention here is to fight from distance (500-1000m) and firmly to the front, limiting the possible angles of incoming fire to a few degrees. Any crossing fire will kill the gunner quickly. Elevation and ridge crests certainly help. The halftrack is a supporting arm, and a method of getting an HMG into a supporting position quickly, to cover a move. It's not a primary combat element.
  3. Depends how well you know them. The closer your relationship, the more it reverts to expletives, grunts, or a combination of the two.
  4. "Brit" is roughly equivalent to calling an American a "Yank". As in, you can do it, it's not offensive, and you'd understand what the other person is saying, but it's neither accurate nor particularly polite. (Worth pointing out or getting upset about? Shrug, I don't know.)
  5. The map should possibly be quite a lot wider - the wider you have the map, the more choice you'll have for approach routes, etc., if that's appropriate.
  6. (Again, all very broadly. These all follow from the basic 3:1 ratio. All examples are from the perspective of the attacker) Platoons will rarely be assigned a decisive objective, independent operations on the CM scale are limited to things like patrols or reconnaissance. Typically, they're doing a job to support a company move (e.g., moving to this unoccupied hill to provide cover for second platoon's movement). Companies typically have one main objective, using their platoons to support each other in taking it. (Assault this hill) Battalions therefore typically will have two objectives. This might be "Lead an attack against this hill, then defend it against expected counterattack", but it might be "Lead an attack against this hill, then continue the attack against this other hill". Brigades will then typically have three, etc.
  7. Real answers are highly variable, but: Battalion frontage in attack is something like 500-1000m. In defence, at least double that. Battalions have the assets to operate independently - they often have the radios, light artillery, AT guns or other assets (like the British carrier platoons) embedded in at this level. "Independent" means a couple of days, typically, which gives you an idea of how far they could reasonably advance. Obviously absolute values are useless, since that's entirely terrain and enemy dependent (i.e., one day advance through the Desert is a lot more than one day through bocage country). Opposition is still figured on the 3:1 ratio, so although you might be manouvreing a battalion versus another battalion, you'll be trying to engage the battalion against a single company. Note how much wider the defence frontage is compared to the attack frontage.
  8. It works that way with Market Garden, where there is overlap with the Commonwealth Forces module for CMBN - shared assets are shared, and do not require owning both modules. The only products that are dependent in that way are some of the Battle Packs.
  9. This one I can answer: One airborne squad, split into two. The leader has NVGs, and is on the right. That team can see the enemy, but the other team can not. Left hand team, no NVG Right hand team, one NVG Which means that it's a graphical bug, essentially. Only the leader should have Night Vision, and it presumably shouldn't manifest as NATO optics.
  10. Targeting directly with a deployed mortar also relies on the mortar having line of sight, to a certain extent. You can Target *just* out of LOS with a mortar, to the other side of a crest or hedge or whatever. Actual indirect fire requires a spotter with LOS to the target and the authority to call it in - Forward Observers certainly, but some armies devolve this down to low levels (in CMSF, US squad leaders can call in indirect fire, whereas Syrian squad leaders can not).
  11. Shock Force has a unique setup (asymmetric warfare) and a modern setting which is fictional, but is close to several real conflicts. It has a lot of advantages that play to CM's strengths - playing Blue vs AI Red means that the AI is often a little more plausible, since static defences or badly trained troops are the order of the day. The asymmetry is often balanced by victory conditions - commonly Blue forces will have overwhelming force, but may have strict rules of engagement and can't afford to lose men or material, which creates a very interesting dynamic. This can be difficult to do well, but it can be done. It was also first, so there is a ton of user content out there, especially since there's a lot of history to draw from. Black Sea is more hypothetical, and is particularly interesting to compare to Shock Force - the Russian army is much better equipped than the Syrian one, even for ostensibly similar formations. The three factions in Black Sea aren't equals, but they're much closer in ability, which makes scenario design easier. If I wanted to buy a modern CM game for PBEM, I'd buy Black Sea, for sure. I suspect Shock Force might be the more interesting title in general though.
  12. Most troops go to ground on receiving fire at a broadly similar rate (I.e., no one likes getting shot). Where C2 links help is in the recovery time - a squad with a valid link (e.g., to an unsuppressed platoon leader) will recover from cowering faster, and so will win a firefight iteratively. Over the course of some minutes they’ll spend fewer seconds in the dirt, so their cumulative volume of fire will increase over an isolated squad.
  13. Whilst I agree with your fundamental point, there are some baked-in differences with equipment that make symmetric scenarios in CMSF tough. In particular, Bradleys overmatch pretty much everything on the Syrian side, and can effectively take on the full range of Syrian gear. Now, this is still a scenario design issue. I do think it's harder to balance asymmetric scenarios, but it's not impossible. I don't agree that CMSF has to be about "overwhelming blue attacks" - there's certainly a lot more wiggle room there - but it's certainly the easiest scenario type to make with the tools available. Red on Red (regular or irregular) is a lot easier to balance.
  14. https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/c89b/42c29ca2491edbbcd986377b2df4e6418602.pdf
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