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General Liederkranz

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Everything posted by General Liederkranz

  1. I agree with @Hardradi and @Freyberg. A steamroller attack on a 250m front, focusing on presenting overwhelming firepower and moving fast enough to keep ahead of the German artillery, works. This does require lots of micromanagement and Target Light commands, but to me that's entirely realistic--platoons are going to have standing orders to lay down cover fire on suspected enemy positions, not just to shoot at identified enemies. The game engine can't do this so the player has to. The force ratios are fine, especially since if you attack on a narrow front you can avoid engaging some of the Germans from the front, or at all. I flubbed up my first play through, mainly because I was new to CM and should not have started with this scenario. The one thing I think could have been improved--and the one place where I benefited, but realistically, from having played it before--is that there should be some pre-battle intelligence for the Soviet player. They historically would have this and it really helps in picking a general target area for the rockets.
  2. There have been several good threads on this over the years; searching for the title of hte campaign and the scenario will turn them up. The premise of this scenario is that either the preliminary artillery was largely ineffective, or that you've been knocked off schedule so you're not following closely behind the barrage, which is why all you get is that one rocket mission. Some people have rejected that as unrealistic but it doesn't seem so to me--surely that kind of thing happened sometimes and the battalion commander had to make the best of it. I''m not an expert on Soviet doctrine but from what I've read, I think you'd see the 3 rifle companies attacking in column, each behind the next, each company with its three platoons on line on a front of about 250m. I do not think the Soviets would keep a whole company in reserve at this level; maybe a platoon if that. All the battalion MGs and probably the SU-76s would support from the start line, then move up. Mortars would be on call through flares or a human chain, which is simulated in CM by the slow call times (I learned the human chain method in reply to a question I posted here a year or two ago--to me the key is that it's not unrealistic or gamey to have Soviet lower HQs call in fire missions, despite the lack of radios). The lead company would advance until enemy fire is so intense they can't move forward any more; then they'd go to ground and return fire while the next company comes up and overruns the resistance. Casualties would be heavy, but a company backed by multiple MGs and SU-76s on a narrow front can put out a lot of firepower. The key is not to get pinned down by flanking fire and to move fast enough to avoid the artillery. When I've tried it this way (with some house rules to limit myself for better roleplaying) I find it works but most of my losses come from artillery hitting my second or third echelon.
  3. In addition to what others have said, Hunt isn't likely to be useful here. First, the spotters will move crouched over, which is more visible than crawling. Second, Hunt won't actually stop the spotters moving as soon as they have a line of sight to the enemy positions, as I think you were hoping. Unless you take fire, they will keep moving until they get an actual spot on an identified enemy unit. That will take longer, and it's also unnecessary since you already know where the enemy is and you don't need a full spot to call in the mortars. The best way to find a position with LOS to the enemy position isn't Hunt, but as @Erwin says, to plot some fake waypoints before you start moving and then trace LOS from those to the enemy. Once you find a spot with a good LOS, Slow move to it, not Hunt. If you're playing against the AI, you also could have a unit deeper in the woods Pop Smoke toward the spot you want the spotter to go. They can throw the grenade toward the treeline, even to a spot they can't see. If you point the purple line in the right direction and account for wind, you might be able to place the smoke just right to give enough cover for the spotter to Slow crawl in (then have them Hide until after the smoke clears). Against a human opponent this will probably draw fire but if the AI can't see you, it won't shoot at you. Another possibility is to move someone else into position somewhere else, but with an LOS to the same enemies, a minute before the spotters arrive, and have them start a firefight to divert the enemy's attention.
  4. In CMBN and CMFB the weapons platoon leader does have a radio, and so does his top sergeant in the HQ support team. This may represent an improved TO&E in 1944-45 compared to the 1943 version in CMFI. The weapons platoon organization changed significantly from 1943 to 1944 so it's possible that the army agreed the old organization made it too cumbersome to use the mortars. In any case I believe the SCR-536 handheld radios were issued at the company level, so the game programming must be making some guesses about how they'd be allocated to platoons. I seem to recall that in some previous version of CMFI, maybe 3.0, the 4th platoon leader *did* have a radio, and that this changed in 4.0, but I don't know if this is deliberate and I may be remembering wrong.
  5. I think it helps in two main ways: 1) the Hull Down command introduced in 4.0 can be very useful in the tank-heavy scenarios of CMRT, and 2) Soviet squads are generally better off unsplit, so the improved spacing in v4 keeps them alive more effectively (and makes it more realistic looking compared to the old conga lines). To me the other parts don't make as big a difference. Corner peeking looks cool but I don't recall it making a huge difference in any CMRT scenarios I've played. CMRT did suffer from the fleeing-from-fortifications bug before 4.01, but of course it was never affected by the single-shot Bren/BAR/Breda problem.
  6. I believe that the Personnel setting is also only available for missions plotted before the game starts, or near TRPs--on the assumption that the artillery knows the exact range to TRPs, or has time to measure it before the game starts, so they can set the fuses appropriately.
  7. Related to this topic, I just witnessed an AI war crime. This guy surrendered then they threw a grenade at him anyway. (I'm not saying this is a bug; I imagine the enemy TacAI decided to fire before his own TacAI decided to surrender).
  8. This probably refers to the M4A1 mortar carrier, a predecessor to the M21, not to the M4A1 medium tank. As I recall mortar carriers weren't coded yet when CMFI and GL came out. http://americangimuseum.org/collections/restored-vehicles/m4a1-mortar-carrier-halftrack-1943/
  9. Sadly it seems this bug is still around, at least in CMFI 2.02. Playing the third scenario of the Troina campaign I observed a couple of occasions where cancelling a Target Light order causes a (US) unit to fire off one rifle grenade before they stop shooting. I wonder if the code cancels the "Light" limitation a split second before it cancels the "Fire" order? I have a saved game showing this behavior.
  10. As @Howler said this still sounds bugged to me. I did some tests with this scenario and noted that in v3.12 and v4, not only do the troops not flee forwards, they usually flee back, which makes far more sense. In 4.01 and 4.02 whenever they flee, it's always forward. So even if the issue here is that the pixeltruppen are seeing the elevation change in front of them as "better cover," that is itself new behavior in 4.01 and 4.02. The old behavior--seeking safer cover by moving back from the hedgerow--seems far more realistic to me.
  11. If you're seeing troops in buildings taking casualties from mortar shrapnel, it seems more likely that it came in through a window or door or shellhole than that it penetrated the building. I believe that probability is factored into the abstracted chance of taking casualties from a shellburst.
  12. On the flip side, the large teams allow the MG to stay in action longer. With US teams that are split, you will sometimes end up with the three-man team all wounded or dead and no way for the ammo bearers to take over the MG.
  13. Exactly, thanks @Howler. I am hopeful a fix is technically possible because of how German MG assistants behave, but I'm under no illusions that this is likely or easy or a priority.
  14. Since I think v3.12 or v4, if you have an FO adjust a fire mission it adjusts *all* the fire missions he's currently directing. I know people have posted about this before but I can't find the threads now. I'm wondering if anyone recalls how this was resolved--was it judged not to be a bug but to be intended behavior? If so, I'm having trouble figuring out what it is supposed to represent.
  15. Thanks @RockinHarry, this is great info. In addition to the points you listed, the fact that batteries firing preparatory bombardments would normally hit targets 110 to 165 yards wide is a useful guideline and suggests to me that Area fire missions should probably be much more commonly used than Point, realistically. It's also interesting that the Germans preferred to fire in whole battalion. In US accounts I also read about battalions firing much more often than batteries, yet in CM games we generally think in terms of batteries. I'm not suggesting that there should be nationality restrictions on trajectory, but that realistically there should be some restrictions. My point about the maximum elevations is that it was a real consideration that designers and officers took into account. As it is any off-map artillery can target any spot on the map. It doesn't matter how steep a hill it is, or whether the firer is an 81mm mortar or a 150mm gun. It would be more realistic if some places, behind steep hills, were immune to off-map fire. This wouldn't have to be a detailed model based on the type of guns and their assumed off-map distance and elevation; it could just be a simple rule of thumb. Not that I'm expecting it to happen, since it's a rare issue and probably not worth the trouble it would take to program. This is a good point. I think that the lack of defined building interiors plays a role too. Hiding helps but it's not enough. Somewhere I think Steve said they initially were going to have multiple action spots inside each building, so you could place a unit in the middle of the building away from all the windows. If the defender could do that, and then tell the unit to Hide, it would create a stronger need for the attacker to bring in large-caliber HE and level the building.
  16. It may be that trenches don't provide enough protection (especially since we can't get overhead cover), but I think there are two other things going on here too. First, artillery is too flexible in the WW2 games and (as others have suggested on the forum) it would be more realistic not to allow Point or Linear missions, instead requiring Area with a minimum of 50m or so. I've started doing this in single-player games and the results feel much more realistic to me. Artillery will suppress and cause casualties but it rarely annihilates. Second, in my experience it makes a huge difference if infantry in trenches Hide. The problem of course is that the AI will never do this.
  17. I think you're talking about direct fire flat trajectory shooting? My understanding is that even for INDIRECT fire there should be dead zones. Instead of distance helping, the dead zones would be even larger if the artillery is further away, since the shells would come in at a shallower angle. The sFH 18, for example, had a maximum elevation of 45 degrees, so steep hills would get in the way. The US M2A1 had a higher elevation of 63 degrees, so it could reach over obstacles better than the US army's earlier 75mm guns (18 degrees initially increased to 45 degrees later). https://armyhistory.org/u-s-and-german-field-artillery-in-world-war-ii-a-comparison/ This is good to know, thanks! It seems like these maybe appear too often appear in scenarios as extra-heavy weapons.
  18. It’s always seemed to me that the trajectories are the same for guns, howitzers, and off-map mortars, and they look pretty steep. I think it’s up to scenario designers to omit certain assets if the terrain would make them unusable. I recall one scenario in the Troina campaign says the Germans have only mortars because you’re on the reverse slope from them. It would be nice if this were explicitly modeled, since some maps would have tactically interesting dead zones for the enemy artillery. (E.g. in CMFI “Ramparts of the Palikoi” I’m pretty sure the German 150mm sFH 18s should not be able to fire on the steam bed at the bottom of such a steep bluff.) I would assume that the different explosive content of each type of shell is modeled, including gun/howitzer differences. I certainly notice that mortar shells seem to have a big blast but less effect, which according to my understanding is right.
  19. It was recently that I played YEG, under 4.01. These are my results. At the time, I was sure the casualties I was seeing were from direct tank/TD fire and not mortars. Perhaps I was wrong but I was carefully watching.
  20. This isn't a bug since I doubt anything is malfunctioning, but I've noticed that in both CMBN and CMFB, there's an annoying quirk about the behavior of US airborne squads. The squads have two men with carbines, who I believe are ammo bearers for the squad's M1919A6 LMG. If you use the "Split Squad" command, they stay with the MG. But if that team (or the whole squad) is ordered to fire, even on "Target Light," and the target is within the carbines' 300m range, the ammo bearers also fire their carbines. I find this frustrating since they add very little to the MG's firepower, and if the team is ordered to provide prolonged suppressive fire they'll quickly use up all their carbine ammo. The squad onyl carries 150 rounds of .30 cal carbine ammo, since everyone else has weapons that fire .30 cal M2 or .45 cal. The guys with carbines then end up out of ammo before the fighting gets closer-in and their carbines might really be useful. The only answer is to try to find a way of splitting that separates the carbine soldiers from the MG, but that is (I believe) ahistorical and contrary to doctrine, as well as being cumbersome and a little tricky in-game. I assume this happens because the M1919A6 is coded as a personal weapon, not as a heavy weapon, since it's within a squad. The ammo bearers are therefore coded as ordinary soldiers, so they fire, unlike the ammo bearers in dedicated heavy weapon teams who hold fire. But there is apparently already some mechanism in the game for certain squad members to hold fire while helping man an LMG. In German squads, for example, there's always one guy who puts away his Kar 98 to help the MG42 gunner. It would be nice if the US airborne ammo bearers--or at least one of them--did this too.
  21. Interesting. i didn't see this problem when I tried your "You Enter Germany" scenario, but I just ran the 60mm and 81mm tests (4.02) and I see it. In the 60mm scenario the right-hand bunker lost 4 men to a round that detonated inside the bunker. In the 81mm test each bunker took a hit that detonated inside, each time losing 4 men.
  22. Just out of curiosity, I loaded the Roadblock scenario to test in 3.12, 4.0, 4.01, and 4.02. In each case, I selected 1st Squad and "Quick" moved it up to the tile to the left of the gap in the hedgerow, as @domfluff suggested to replicate the problem. I did this 6 times in each version. In every case they came under fire (MGs, small arms, and usually off-map mortars) and took casualties. I ran each scenario until the squad evaded, until its members were all casualties, or until the scenario ended. 3.12: Once they stayed for the entire game. In the other 5 cases they evaded (either Fast or Slow) away from the hedgerow, back into the friendly field. 4.0: Once they stayed put for the entire game. The other 5 times they Fast or Slow moved back from the hedgerow. So exactly the same as in 3.12. 4.01: 4 times they never fled (even with only 2 members left in one case). The other 2 times they evaded forward through the hedgerow gap, and then to the right along the hedgerow to the corner. 4.02: 5 times they never fled (in one case they were wiped out entirely). The other 1 time they evaded forward through the hedgerow and then right to the corner, like in 4.01. This is obviously a small sample size and not nearly as comprehensive as what the beta testers and some others have done. I did it mostly to satisfy my own curiosity and my suspicion that my system is not generating this issue as much as some people's are. It seems for some people, this happens almsot every time in 4.01. For me, it was only 2 out of 6 times. 4.02 helped, but didn't eliminate it (1 out of 6 times). It does not seem to happen at all in either 3.12 or 4.0. But what's really interesting is that in 4.01 and 4.02 the squad NEVER evaded BACKWARD, which would seem like the most logical choice. If they moved, they only moved forward. It was only in 3.12 and 4.0 that they would ever flee backward. (Random odd fact I noticed: in 3.12, the squad leader's name is always "Lewis." In 4.0 and later, it's always "Melvin.")
  23. Just downloaded and I'm delighted to see FJ back in CMFI. 😀
  24. I just checked and this but (if it is a bug?) is also not fixed: Soviet AT rifles are still not recovered in Buddy Aid.
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