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Bozowans

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Bozowans last won the day on January 25

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  1. "I surrender!" "No, I surrender!" "No, I surrender!" "I surrendered first!" "Nuh uh!"
  2. I was not saying "cover bad, firepower good" or anything like that. If there are bits of cover here and there on your route of advance, by all means take advantage of it, but I don't think cover matters as much in CM as it does IRL. It doesn't matter as much as it does in other games either. Even though CM has a 1:1 scale representation of infantrymen, it is still kinda abstracted a bit. Real human beings are fast, mobile, and very good at taking advantage of every little piece of cover they can find. On the other hand, the AI pixeltruppen in CM are very slow and sluggish, get stuck on things, and are not that good at using cover. There are only a few things they can do (like move forward, crouch, go prone). They are limited by the simple animations and 3D models. The terrain on a CM map is obviously not as detailed as real life is either, and cannot simulate all the tiny bits of cover and undulations and rises and dips and other micro-terrain elements you would find IRL. Other games might ruthlessly punish you for going out into the open by giving you some kind of penalty, or they will have things like a +2 cover bonus if you are in a forest tile or whatever. The CMx2 engine does not do that at all. The only real "cover" you can find on a typical CM map are buildings and trees and foxholes/trenches, and I've seen many posts and threads on these forums complaining about the lack of protection that foxholes and trenches provide. So the game compensates for this by making fire much more random and inaccurate than it would be IRL. In CM, open ground isn't really open ground. A soldier standing still or running in a straight line out in an open street in CM might take an enormous amount of fire before they go down. In a situation like that IRL, they wouldn't just be standing still or running in a jerky straight line like they are in the game, but they would be ducking and weaving in and out of cover, doubled over while dodging and blind-firing behind random junk in the street, etc. If you watch combat footage, you can see just how crazy agile real people are. Sometimes it looks like they are bunny-hopping down the street or something. They do things that CM can't possibly simulate. In CM, squads in open ground can take more punishment than they can IRL, especially if they aren't moving. Troops running around seem to be much more vulnerable, but it often surprises me how much fire a squad can take if they are lying prone on the ground and not moving. On the other hand, a guy in a foxhole might go down with the first burst of incoming fire. Since it's all basically random, it's hard to predict. Sometimes a squad might get torn apart in seconds, and other times I will see a MG firing at troops directly in front of him on open ground for several turns without hitting anything. So IMO, the best way to cross open ground is to not be so afraid of it that you think you need to avoid it at all costs or get across it ASAP. You don't want to just charge across the field all at once (unless you put down a giant curtain of smoke or something). Troops are more vulnerable when moving, so you want to minimize the amount of time you are moving. It helps to advance in short rushes with only a small part of your force at a time, while stopping frequently to shoot. Moving too slow would make you vulnerable to mortar or artillery fire though, so you want to keep a fairly slow but steady pace.
  3. To me, cover does not really seem to matter that much in the CM games. It matters a bit, but it's more about fire superiority. Squads in good cover will often get blown to bits very quickly if the enemy has fire superiority. A single tank shell hitting a foxhole position or the side of a building is sometimes all it takes to wipe out the squad inside. On the other hand, you can also advance across a gigantic open field against enemies in good cover and still take zero casualties as long as you have fire superiority. Sometimes I think players get too focused on sticking to cover as much as possible. I see people do it in videos and I often catch myself doing it. I become obsessed with cramming all my troops into what little cover is available and then I end up hurting myself because not all of my troops can form a good firing line from inside the cover. My troops become too constricted when I try to only follow what cover is available. And then it gets even worse when an enemy artillery barrage lands on all my troops bunched up in the cover. If I just move some of the troops out into the open and spread them out a bit more, I can get more angles of fire going against the enemy positions, more firepower can get focused outward, and things get easier. Even troops lying prone on open ground can still be hard to hit, especially at a distance. Units are also the most vulnerable in CM when they're moving. Stationary troops seem to be harder to hit for some reason. It all depends on the situation of course, but I've had success when crossing open fields not by trying to charge across it as quickly as possible, but by taking it slow, stopping frequently (but not for too long), and shooting at everything in sight. CM seems to be a game less about whatever terrain you're in, and more about firepower and angles of fire. It's about getting more of your guns to bear against the enemy than they can, so that the moment they open fire they will get blasted instantly by overwhelming return fire. You wanna think about terrain not in terms of "how open is this?" but more in terms of "can I get a good shot at them from here?" At least that's how I see it.
  4. I took a screenshot of the tank: Those two penetrations on the side were both 120mm mortars falling onto it. You can see another mortar from the same battery exploding in the background in the picture. They are not very accurate so I was amazed when I got even one hit. Then the second one happened a minute later. I've seen mortars knock out vehicles before, and even saw a mortar fall through the open hatch of a tank turret once, but I've never seen two hit so close together before in years of playing these games. So that was interesting.
  5. Well it took me forever but I finally did it! Finished the whole campaign. That was a pretty epic finale there. I was pretty aggressive and forced a surrender with 37 minutes left to go on the clock. Here's the final tally for the whole campaign: That's 319 casualties for me plus 19 tanks. Most of those other vehicles were destroyed by aircraft. Soviets took 1,549 casualties plus 90 tanks, 12 assault guns and a ridiculous number of trucks and jeeps. I shot down a Soviet plane in the final battle, making it 2 planes shot down overall, which was a nice surprise. The Soviet planes did absolutely nothing in the final battle except strafe an empty truck and then immediately get shot down. In the final battle I took 125 casualties and 9 tanks lost. Several of those tanks were lost due to a couple of horribly botched flanking maneuvers on my part. Most of the enemy tanks were in a big line across the map. Their tank line was very strong, but I managed to break through on the far left and right flanks, so I tried to slip a couple tank platoons deep around into the enemy rear areas to encircle them, flank the rest of their tanks and roll up the enemy line. Turns out the map designer placed some assault guns hidden deep in the rear in a second line right up against the map edge to prevent just such a thing. Whoops! The enemy took 467 casualties in the final battle, 23 of them POWs. Plus 18 tanks lost and 7 assault guns. The artillery you get is pretty devastating. One of my observers alone caused 88 casualties, and I didn't even use all that much artillery. I was playing on the highest difficulty so the call times were pretty long. I had the enemy surrounded toward the end, and I was getting ready to dump all the rest of my artillery onto the final enemy positions in the center of their line. I had 150mm shells falling into the middle of a bunch of their positions and I was attacking from every direction when they finally surrendered. Based on this campaign, if I were to criticize my own playstyle, I would have a few points: a) I should be more cautious. I tend to start each scenario very cautiously, sneaking everyone around and doing careful recon and doing very well overall in the initial phases, but once the battle is halfway through or so, I start getting more and more impatient and I get aggressive and start throwing everyone into the meat grinder. It's especially hard to be cautious in a campaign like this, where the scenarios are so massive. b) I should use more smoke. I always forget that I even have smoke, and I'm not very good at using it even when I remember that I have it. c) I should be more liberal with my ammo and artillery usage. Even though you have to conserve ammo in this campaign, it was never a problem for me at all and I always had a ton left over. Your infantry gets thousands of rounds of extra ammo in their trucks and half-tracks and they can always go back for more. I always have a lot of artillery left over as well. There was a huge amount left over in the final battle. It just takes so long to first find the enemy, then get observers into good positions and then it takes even longer to wait for them to call it in. I get impatient and then I just attack anyway. The artillery is often very effective though when I do end up using it. One of the highlights of the final battle for me was when a T-34 got hit by 120mm mortars twice in almost the exact same spot. The two shell holes were only inches apart from each other. I had only intended to force the T-34 commander to button up, not expecting any of the mortars to actually hit, but I ended up blowing up the tank twice over.
  6. Try playing as the Syrians and you will start cursing at how useless your RPGs are. That's exactly what I did a ways back when I played the Ambush at Al Fubar scenario as the insurgents. You get a bunch of guys with RPG-7s and have to block an enemy Stryker advance through a neighborhood. I kept setting up these nice RPG ambushes only to get frustrated when they would uselessly bounce off the slat armor over and over again. Then my RPG guys would get instantly blown away after they fired their one shot. I had wondered about the effectiveness of RPGs in-game vs real life ever since CMSF1 came out. I don't think the US military is very open about the equipment losses they took in Iraq and Afghanistan. There is this article though: https://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/12/04/AR2006120401347.html The military seemed to take enormous vehicle losses throughout those wars from all causes, from battle damage to wear and tear and mechanical breakdowns, but there's no way to tell how many of those were specifically from combat. The military isn't gonna come out and say "Yeah we totally had 40 Bradleys destroyed by the enemy this year", but according to that article, the military had $17+ billion worth of equipment destroyed or worn out each year up to the date of that article, which is 2006. They took so many losses that a lot of units were rendered unfit to deploy due to lack of equipment. I've heard a lot of talk over the years about how Abrams tanks are supposed to be so great and invincible and so on, but by December 2006 more than 530 Abrams had to be shipped back to the US for repairs, meaning tanks so badly damaged or broken down that they could not be serviced in the field at all. There was a depot in Texas that had 700 broken down or destroyed Bradleys at one point. It's worth pointing out as well all of the Iraqi Abrams tanks destroyed by ISIS. The Iraqis had 140 of them before the war, but by the end of 2014 they had only 40 of them left. A lot of them were captured by ISIS fighters and then destroyed by US air strikes, but apparently about a third of them were destroyed by ISIS fighters, often with Kornet ATGMs or infantry close assaults, since the Iraqi Army was not all that good at protecting them with the whole tank-infantry coordination thing. Of course those were not the same type of Abrams as the more advanced US military ones, but those are still some pretty heavy losses. There's also the fact that the CM games have a kind of simplified damage model, so what would count as "knocked out" for the purposes of one scenario might be something that could be fixed in real life fairly quickly, and the vehicle could get moving again, albeit busted up pretty badly and eventually ending up as a repair statistic in a Washington Post article. I don't think that the way CM handles things is flawless, but reducing the effectiveness of RPGs and ATGMs by 90% seems a little extreme! There is one thing that I don't think CM models all that well though, which is crew casualties. I feel like they are too high and too likely to be KIA instead of just WIA.
  7. I've often had the opposite experience in SF2. Units only surrender when there are enemy troops very close to them, which is pretty rare, especially with the extreme deadliness of the modern munitions in SF2. Units tend to get obliterated from hundreds of meters out. If the Syrians are poor conscripts or whatever, they will usually just run away rather than surrender, which results in them getting mowed down in huge numbers as they abandon their cover. If the scenario has a lot of close quarters urban combat or if you're a really aggressive player and try to charge in close to the enemy, you do see a lot more surrenders though. I think if I were to change how the AI works, I would try to make poor quality troops less likely to run, and more likely to cower in one place for very long periods. If I were some conscript thrown into a foxhole waiting to die horribly in the big enemy assault coming my way, I would probably spend the whole battle soiling myself in a terrified stupor at the bottom of my hole as the deafening explosions go off around me. I don't think I would want to get up and run around. Once the enemy assault sweeps over my position, I'd throw my hands up before a grenade lands in my hole. If playing as the US Army or whatever against poor quality Syrians, it would be cool if you could see something like this: At various points in a battle you might lay waste to a suspected enemy position with area fire, and all the enemy fire stops completely and the enemy seems to disappear. Everything goes quiet. You might think you've killed all the enemy troops until ten minutes later you send some infantry to check out the position and a couple dozen hands all pop up out of the trench in surrender. That would be a lot more realistic than the way the game usually works, with everyone in the trench jumping out and running away into a hail of gunfire and explosions the moment a few bullets come their way, resulting in like 200 KIA when the scenario is over.
  8. Do you get mortars or artillery? Have you tried dropping them on the German tanks? If you get really lucky you could hit one or perhaps even knock one out, but I usually drop mortars onto tanks just to get them to button up. While that is going on I have infantry spot the enemy tanks and then have them run back to report their locations to my own tanks. Then I can move my unbuttoned tanks, who are already aware of the enemy tank presence, forward while the enemy tanks are still blind and oblivious.
  9. I do agree that tanks are overpowered, but everything else is overpowered too IMO. I don't think this is an issue with tanks alone. Foxholes don't provide that much cover from even small arms fire. There is not enough fog of war in the game. For one thing, they never managed to replicate what they did in the CMx1 engine, where the game would deliberately mislead you about where enemy units are. If an enemy unit was firing at you at long range, a little 3D soldier model named "sound contact" would appear somewhere, but it might appear dozens of meters away from where the actual unit really is. So if you were taking long range MG fire from a cluster of buildings off in the distance, you would not be able to tell which building they are firing from. You can try plastering the location of the sound contact with HE fire from tanks and artillery, but once you get closer, you might find that the enemy unit is in a slightly different location completely untouched. In CMx2, if an enemy sniper fires just one single shot, you can pinpoint his exact location easily and order every single one of your units to mass fire on that exact spot in the next turn. Real life wars on the other hand seem awfully boring and confusing most of the time, with firefights consisting of hours of ineffectual and mindless shooting in the general direction of the enemy, with the outcomes decided more by morale than anything else. Both sides will put on a big display of noise and shooting until one side cracks, thinks they are going to lose, and then they run away. In CM, units are not allowed to rout off the map, and every battle is a brutal fight to the death with enormous casualties. Battles in CM are decided more by fire superiority and destroying the enemy as completely as you can. I think the tank issue can be solved if the game just had more mystery to it. Enemy locations and unit types need to be much more vague. You should not be able to tell that an enemy unit 1000m away is an HQ team located in that one precise action spot. You should only have a general idea that there is enemy infantry "over there" somewhere. That way, battles would be decided by throwing suppressing fire over a large area and then assaulting up close, instead of pinpointing the exact action spot the enemy is located in and then just hammering it with HE fire from tanks and artillery until everyone is dead.
  10. So I tend to spend far, far too much time down at eye level. It takes me forever to play each scenario because I'm constantly rewinding the turns and watching them from different units' points of view. I take way too many screenshots as well. I play plenty of other games but for some reason I take far more screenshots of CM than any other game I've ever played. Something about the WEGO system and camera zoom means I can spend ages trying to frame different compositions for screenshots. So I'm glad you like them! I took a million screenshots of the last scenario I played from the Blunting the Spear campaign so I thought I'd post one of the parts I thought was cool, with the runaway T-34 that almost broke right through my lines. So there might be some spoilers here for anyone who hasn't played this campaign. At the beginning of the scenario, I massed all of my tanks on my right flank, and I put my two companies of infantry in a long line across the map in two waves. The first wave was made entirely of two-man scout teams that I sent forward in a widely dispersed skirmish line. I wanted the scouts to just run forward, find the enemy, infiltrate their lines, and then if possible, rejoin the second wave later for the main assault. I was supposed to be attacking, so I had no idea that a platoon of T-34s were about to come charging straight toward me right at the beginning of the scenario through a smoke screen. My own tanks were all on the right, and the T-34s were charging straight at my left, right toward the masses of trucks and support units I had parked in the rear: Here you can see an overview. You can see my wave of scouts out front and everything else massed farther behind. The T-34s came over a hill, firing a couple of times at my trucks in the rear, but missed. They had to cross a wide open field to get into my lines. My own tanks were out of position to respond effectively, but for a couple hundred meters the T-34s would still be exposed to a few of my Panthers on the right. Two of the T-34s were destroyed, and one of the Panthers was knocked out by a partial penetration that killed the driver. Miraculously, the third T-34 managed to get all the way across the field in a suicide charge at top speed, running a gauntlet of Panther fire the whole way. Five Panther shots were directed at it, and all missed. The T-34 managed to get out of view of the Panthers and got mixed in with my line of scouts. It stopped to blow up a scout team nearby: Luckily, it stopped right next to another scout team and it was immediately hit by grenades: Seconds later, an AA half-track stationed in the rear opened up on the tank. Most of the shots were ricochets and it didn't seem to have much effect. The T-34 was immobilized after a little while, but I couldn't tell if it was from grenades or AA fire hitting the wheels and tracks. At this point I was panicking. The T-34 had a perfect view of a lot of extremely vulnerable units in the rear, and it would have taken several minutes for my own tanks to respond. Trucks, half-tracks and Kubelwagens were frantically driving every which way to escape. HQ teams and mortar crews were running for cover. If the T-34 had kept going just a little farther, it could have caused a lot of damage. I sent Panzerschreck troops running ahead to stop it at all costs as AA fire tore through the air: A rocket is fired at almost the far limit of the Panzerschreck's effective range, at about 185 meters. A hit! Right as the T-34's turret was turning toward the AA half-track, the rocket slammed into the far rear end of the turret. If it was just a few inches to the left, it would have missed, and the AA gun would have been toast, along with who knows what else. The driver jumped out of his hatch as more AA fire ripped into the tank. The rest of the crew were cooked inside, as no one else emerged. Confronted by the pissed off tank driver, the cowardly scout turned tail and ran. The driver popped off a few pistol shots at the scout's backside and then comically started chasing after him through the field: The tank driver chased after the guy for quite some distance. A few bursts of machine gun fire from nearby infantry missed the driver by inches. Undeterred, the driver kept up the chase. Eventually, the scout's partner woke up from his stupor and joined the chase, ending it quickly with a single shot from his G43. Quiet once again broke out across the battlefield, and the German advance continued. A lot more death and destruction would take place before the day was finally over.
  11. The AT gun was behind a building. I started the battle by sending out a big wave of scouts all over the map in a big skirmish line, to feel out the enemy positions. I first saw one of the ditch AT guns when it blew up one of the scout teams all of a sudden. I lost two more scout teams when I tried to work them around the flanks of the gun, to feel out where the enemy positions ended and where those flanks were. By the time I figured that out, I had my second wave of follow-up troops, HMG teams and platoon leaders snuck into position, just out of view of the guns. Then I launched a big company-sized infantry assault on the whole ditch line, attacking them in the front and rolling up both flanks at the same time with mortars in support. I managed to knock out one of the guns with grenades right up close, and I only took one or two casualties IIRC. So I got lucky there. When that was over, I was starting to get anxious about running low on time and I didn't expect even more AT guns to be farther back. So I rolled the tanks forward. Sometimes I like to use my tanks like they are medieval cavalry or horse archers or something, and have them roll way out around the enemy flanks and deep into their rear areas without infantry support. It's a really risky gamble and sometimes you will lose a lot of tanks doing it, but sometimes it pays off big and you can catch large numbers of enemy troops with their pants down and just massacre them. Well I started rolling the Panthers into the enemy rear, encircling some of the farm houses back there like a bunch of vultures. The AT gun back there had been silent the whole battle and I couldn't see it even when right up on it. I even had infantry pretty close by and they couldn't see it either. I thought the whole position had been cleared when the tank got blasted point blank. The crew jumped out and immediately surrendered. Of course, MY tank crews don't go out fighting to the death in a blaze of glory with their pistols. They just surrender instantly. I was able to rescue the crew a few minutes later though. This campaign has been really fun so far and I'm definitely gonna push it all the way to the end even if it takes forever.
  12. Very slowly! I wish I had more time lately to play these games. I finally finished the fifth battle. It was quite difficult; the most difficult one yet other than the second one. I lost three Panthers destroyed outright, and another two were immobilized, so I really lost five tanks. Another two after that lost their main guns, and even more lost their commanders or other crew members. That was a nasty fight. The Panthers performed so well in the third battle, but their gunnery was not so good in this one. I tried massing my armor and hitting the enemy with local superiority in numbers, but they would still miss loads of shots and get picked off one by one. The enemy also had some very well placed AT guns in this one. One of the AT guns managed to shoot one of the Panthers right in the backside from like 50m away. I had no idea it was there and the tank drove right past it, just a few feet away. Oh well, luckily they give you so many tanks that it doesn't matter too much if you lose a bunch of them. I'm going into the final battle with a whole other company of Panthers that is pretty much untouched. Despite the few setbacks, I still managed to get a total victory and force a Russian surrender with 6 minutes to go on the clock. I had tanks surrounding the final objective and infantry storming into the village when it ended. The enemy lost 22 tanks/assault guns. There were a lot of pretty intense moments in that one, and lots of extreme close quarters fighting in the dark. I looked over the final battle for a few minutes and it looks crazy. I hope it doesn't crash my computer with how big it is. It's gonna take me ages to play it. I've heard this too and I wonder if this was the case in the CMx1 engine? I thought you had to move tanks slower in that one or else they would bog down. Maybe that's why that belief has carried over into CMx2? Or maybe that's never even been the case at all?
  13. I remember playing the Operation Flashpoint: Red Hammer expansion way back in the day. Fun stuff. I like Across the Oder. Reminds me of Across the Dnepr, part of that old hex-based wargame series from way back. I still play those now and then.
  14. They really are annoying aren't they? After a big tank battle they tend to be scattered all over the map hiding among trees and wheat fields and whatnot. Then the only warning you have that they are around is when a sudden flurry of pistol shots ring out at point blank range, taking down some of your men in the process. I just lost three men to one of those tank crews. I wish that units can retreat off the map in this game. Tank crews should be getting off the field ASAP, not lying around in ambush with their silly little pistols.
  15. Thanks, I'm gonna need it considering what just happened *spoiler alert* At the beginning of this mission a platoon of T-34s went on a crazy mad suicide charge straight at my lines. My tanks were out of position to deal with a sudden, unexpected tank charge like that, so only a couple of my tanks were in a position to fire back. Two of the T-34s were destroyed, but not before knocking out one of the Panthers. The third T-34 managed to charge full speed across a field straight toward my infantry and trucks in the rear, running a gauntlet of Panther fire the whole way. Five Panther shots were directed at it, and all missed, at a range of about 700m. The T-34 kept going until out of view of the Panthers and got mixed in with my scout line, almost running over a scout team. The T-34 stopped, blew up a different scout team at point blank range, then started getting hit by repeated volleys of AA half-track fire and grenades from the scout team it almost ran over. Eventually it was knocked out by an astonishingly lucky Panzerschreck hit from 185m away, just as the turret was turning toward the AA half-track. If the T-34 had made it just a little bit farther, it would have been in a perfect position to blow the hell out of the mass of trucks, mortar teams and support units I had parked in the rear. The T-34 had even fired at a couple of trucks, but missed. That was a close one. Even crazier though was the lone tank driver that jumped out of the burning T-34. He hopped out right in front of one of my scouts, just a few feet away. The cowardly scout promptly got up and started running away, but the tank driver started chasing him across the field, firing his pistol as he ran after him, hot on his heels. The driver eventually got shot in the back by the scout's teammate after a brief chase. That had to be one of the sillier things I've seen in this game.
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