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Fire suppression from small arms discussion

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Just now, IanL said:

Yeah, same. The one plus is they don't tire out as much. Personally I prefer quick for a distance with pauses.

Yep, that's what I usually do, too. There are many ways to construct a movement order sequence that fits the situation and the terrain, but the one command I never use is MOVE. Even using QUICK, the troops don't tire much unless they are jogging very long distances, and even so, there's not much penalty for exhaustion anyway. Only thing it does is prevent you from keep running.

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9 hours ago, c3k said:

there should be some industry recognition of this as one of Charles' great achievements.

+1

Good AI is the very hardest thing to program.  Big defense companies spend many millions... tens of millions to attempt to do what Charles has accomplished.

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6 hours ago, IanL said:

Yeah, same. The one plus is they don't tire out as much. Personally I prefer quick for a distance with pauses.

I understand that concept as I used to think the same.  But as one gets to be a more experienced player one finds that one can trust the MOVE command more and more.  Only when contact/combat is imminent or occurring do I switch to using QUICK or even FAST with rests.  

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11 hours ago, Erwin said:
17 hours ago, IanL said:

Yeah, same. The one plus is they don't tire out as much. Personally I prefer quick for a distance with pauses.

I understand that concept as I used to think the same.  But as one gets to be a more experienced player one finds that one can trust the MOVE command more and more.  Only when contact/combat is imminent or occurring do I switch to using QUICK or even FAST with rests.  

Erwin, I'm genuinely interested in knowing how you use the MOVE command and how you find it useful?

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16 hours ago, Erwin said:

I understand that concept as I used to think the same.  But as one gets to be a more experienced player one finds that one can trust the MOVE command more and more.  Only when contact/combat is imminent or occurring do I switch to using QUICK or even FAST with rests.  

I'm coming around to that too. I still use Quick most of the time, but Move is handy when I just want to give one simple order and forget about that squad/team for a few turns. Use of Quick is a more complicated procedure involving stretches of jogging alternating with pauses to rest, observe, or provide covering fire. It is my first choice when I am actively engaging enemy positions or expect imminent contact. But when contact is not expected, Move works just as well with less hassle.

Michael

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7 hours ago, Michael Emrys said:

want to give one simple order and forget about that squad/team for a few turns.  Use of Quick is a more complicated procedure involving stretches of jogging alternating with pauses to rest, observe, or provide covering fire. It is my first choice when I am actively engaging enemy positions or expect imminent contact.

Yes, precisely...  Especially when one has a company or more, it gets tiresome to use a combination of QUICK and HUNT and PAUSES unless in immediate combat.   This comment is of course primarily applicable to larger maps where one has to move some distance.  I also find that MOVE will usually result in a desirable outcome even if the unit comes under fire.  It's much more useful than in CM1.

Tiresomeness and time conservation are also the reasons am hoping that one day we'll get the CM1 "one click" 180 degree covered arc back esp for armor turrets.

 

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On 2/15/2018 at 12:04 PM, Bulletpoint said:

Yep, that's what I usually do, too. There are many ways to construct a movement order sequence that fits the situation and the terrain, but the one command I never use is MOVE. Even using QUICK, the troops don't tire much unless they are jogging very long distances, and even so, there's not much penalty for exhaustion anyway. Only thing it does is prevent you from keep running.

I've been using the MOVE command quite a bit recently, even during combat conditions, and it's worked out surprisingly well sometimes. For one thing, troops using MOVE are more aware of their surroundings. When troops are running, they are gonna spend more time looking at the ground or what's directly in front of them, trying to maintain their footing and so on. They are less likely to spot enemies, especially to the sides and rear, and are more likely to bunch up. They tend to focus on getting to their destination quickly more than anything else. When troops are walking, they have better spotting ability and are more likely to fire at any exposed enemies in the distance as well.

For an example of this, just recently I had an infantry company advancing through a fairly light pine forest. I had the whole company using MOVE, even though I was expecting contact. A small enemy team opened fire on one of my scout teams out front and caused one casualty. Within a few seconds, one of my other lead squads spotted them off to their left flank and let loose a volley of return fire, immediately routing that enemy team. My advance continued unimpeded. If I had everyone running forward, their reaction times would have been slowed and they probably would have been more vulnerable. If I had everyone using HUNT, then the entire company's advance might have been halted by just a few guys. Everyone would have hit the dirt, and they might have lost sight of the enemy completely while lying prone in the underbrush.

While walking, your troops can keep their heads up and on a swivel while maintaining a steady advance, without being too vulnerable. If they get shot at, it's no big deal since they'll automatically switch to a run, seek cover and/or return fire if possible. I wouldn't use MOVE during heavy combat, or to advance across open fields under fire or anything, but I still find it useful.

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2 hours ago, Bozowans said:

I've been using the MOVE command quite a bit recently, even during combat conditions, and it's worked out surprisingly well sometimes. For one thing, troops using MOVE are more aware of their surroundings. When troops are running, they are gonna spend more time looking at the ground or what's directly in front of them, trying to maintain their footing and so on. They are less likely to spot enemies, especially to the sides and rear, and are more likely to bunch up. They tend to focus on getting to their destination quickly more than anything else. When troops are walking, they have better spotting ability and are more likely to fire at any exposed enemies in the distance as well.

Are you certain about this, or is it just how you feel things are working, based on your experience?

I often see my 2-man scout team spotting enemies way off in the distance, through trees, while running using QUICK orders. I feel they spot way too good while running actually. I'd like if it works like you described, but I'm not sure.

 

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35 minutes ago, Bulletpoint said:

Are you certain about this, or is it just how you feel things are working, based on your experience?

I often see my 2-man scout team spotting enemies way off in the distance, through trees, while running using QUICK orders. I feel they spot way too good while running actually. I'd like if it works like you described, but I'm not sure.

 

It says so in the manual. I have no idea how big of a difference it really makes, but the manual does state that the faster a squad is moving, the less likely they are to spot things, especially to the flanks. The manual also mentions that squads using QUICK can lose unit cohesion and be more prone to bunching up. 

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That's a much better analysis that what I attempted to do in my post, but Bozowans does an xnt job expressing my thoughts on the usefulness of MOVE vs QUICK.  The other advantage of course is that one "always" has troops that are "Rested" and as combat is an issue of probabilities including experience and command factors, being "Rested" is one more tilt on the roulette wheel.

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7 minutes ago, Erwin said:

That's a much better analysis that what I attempted to do in my post, but Bozowans does an xnt job expressing my thoughts on the usefulness of MOVE vs QUICK.  The other advantage of course is that one "always" has troops that are "Rested" and as combat is an issue of probabilities including experience and command factors, being "Rested" is one more tilt on the roulette wheel.

^^^ This

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2 hours ago, Bulletpoint said:

Apart from troop fatigue level having no impact on combat performance. @Josey Wales tested it thoroughly some time ago.

Why am I not surprised? As always, if you want correct information about CM game mechanics, you have to spend the time testing to find out yourself. Forget about getting it from the manual or the developers.

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4 hours ago, Bulletpoint said:

Apart from troop fatigue level having no impact on combat performance. @Josey Wales tested it thoroughly some time ago.

I want them rested so they can move quicker, longer when they get into combat.  I use FAST and QUICK moves a lot then, especially in urban settings.

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2 hours ago, JSj said:

Why am I not surprised? As always, if you want correct information about CM game mechanics, you have to spend the time testing to find out yourself. Forget about getting it from the manual or the developers.

People already have trouble finding stuff that is clearly in the manual much less making it 5000 pages long to cover every little detail.  :D 

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15 minutes ago, sburke said:

People already have trouble finding stuff that is clearly in the manual much less making it 5000 pages long to cover every little detail.  :D 

Sure, I get your point. :-) But still, is really, for instance, the effect of being in Command and Control or not a "little detail"? This seems like a major game feature, and still there is no information on what this effect is.

If I have troops in the front line engaging the enemy, and my HQ is out of contact, how important is it really to reestablish C&C? Should I risk moving my HQ unit over that open ground to regain contact with the troops? If the not-being in C&C combat penalty is, let's say 2% (and, also 2% for what? Accuracy when firing? Morale? Both? Or something else?), then of course not. But, if it is 500%, then hell yes! The real number is probably somewhere in between these extremes, but without knowing, how do you make the decision?

Edited by JSj

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Yeah don’t get me wrong  I get that some folks really want to know that data. I am not sure the answer is necessarily cut and dried, but maybe it is.

How much you care depends a lot on how you play the game. I am one those immersion freaks.  My units should be in c&c because that is how troops behave. Whether it makes a difference in capabilities is for me kind of irrelevant, but I would hope it does.  In real life the advantages or not is also not necessarily quantifiable. So much goes into whether a leader is effective or not. I kind of prefer the ambiguity. On the other hand I absolutely understand that many folks don’t. 

Edited by sburke

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A major challenge of playing CM2 is its subtleties.  Yes, it seems more realistic (I think?) to keep troops in C&C.  Yes, if one does statistically significant tests there is a mathematical advantage.  However, when playing the game it's hard to determine if there is an observable penalty when a unit moves out of C2.  So, yes if possible keep C2, but frankly if you are reasonably experienced, am not sure it really matters.  And that's a shame. 

While CM1 is more a game than a sim, what makes it entertaining is that it can be quite obvious that a HQ with high values makes a significant and observable improvement to a unit's functions.  It's fun to pick out platoons with the best leaders and use them as one's "favorite" formations for the most important missions.  In CM2 it's all so subtle, the units seem more cookie-cutter, interchangeable, and without the "individual personality" that was enjoyable in CM1.

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8 hours ago, Bulletpoint said:

Apart from troop fatigue level having no impact on combat performance. @Josey Wales tested it thoroughly some time ago.

I recollect that @Josey Wales discovered troop fatigue level only has no impact on marksmanship/direct fire performance (meaning how well they shoot).  Fatigue level does affect unit morale which in turn directly affects adherence to orders whether they advance, or stay, or run away.  I think what @mjkerner is correctly saying is that keeping a reserve of troops which are more ready or rested will give players a winning edge when needed for the final push.

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Erwin, I agree.  Unless the difference is Elite vs Conscript it is hard to distinguish between squads.  I don't even look at the leadership ratings anymore.  Maybe that's the way it was - unless you are total crap you can probably lead competently but beyond that what can any leader really do when their men are fully engaged?  Unless they are Capt. Winters, of course...

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Fatigue has no effect on a units accuracy or on its morale state regardless if the current morale state is as a result from either Combat Stress or Combat Shock or a combination of both.

Fatigue will only affect your movement options;

Tired troops cannot Fast Move.

Fatigued troops cannot Fast, Assault or Hunt Move.

Exhausted troops cannot Fast, Assault, Hunt or Quick Move.

 

Maintaining a C2 link with a Plt HQ for example provides that squad with a resistance to Combat Shock  i.e. its morale state will not drop as low under incoming fire as it would if it was out of C2 link.

Whether you want to maintain the C2 link is up to you as a player. Well trained, led and motivated units have a built in resistance to Combat Shock  whereas poorly trained, led and motivated units are more susceptible to its effects. You could make a case that its more important to keep the C2 link with lower quality troops when they are in contact, however even good quality troops get worn down and will benefit from maintaining the link when taking incoming fire especially if they have taken casualties and are suffering an additional impact on their morale state from Combat Stress.

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Bit is it noticeable is the question.  Maybe if I play a scenario with no one in C2 and then replay it keeping C2 as much as possible I will see some difference...

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I've always wondered what the exact effect of fatigue was. It doesn't say anything about that in the manual. So it has no effect at all then? Other than limiting the movement options of course. That's good to know.

Regarding how important it is to maintain C2 links though, let's not forget to mention information sharing between units. According to the manual, there are "strong" and "weak" C2 links. Strong will be a bright red line, and represent both visual and audio contact. Weak will be a darker line and might be visual only. If you have a strong C2 link, information about the enemy can be easily shared between units through the chain of command. So maintaining C2 will improve the spotting ability and reaction times of your units, as well as making them a bit more resilient under fire.

In my experience, it's good to try maintaining C2 links, but it's not really THAT important. I don't think it would be worth it to risk the lives of your HQ teams to re-establish C2 with some isolated squad somewhere for example, and sometimes I think it's a better idea to spread your men way out as much as possible, instead of clustering them all together in one spot, just so they could all hear the leader.

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Fatigue does affect performance. An Army field test of an infantry platoon in the defense found troops deprived of sleep for 24 hours were only 80% effective at their tasks, which of course are primarily noticing the foe and shooting him. The platoon leader was down to, I believe, 20%. Please tell me how this isn't significant enough to be at least somewhat represented in the game? As the current and former soldiers here will aver, and a zillion war accounts state ad nauseam, combat soldiers are almost always tired. This is why fresh troops, timely injected even in small numbers, can exert such disproportionate effects. Fatigue interferes with perception, reaction time, decision making and correctness thereof, motivation and morale.

How can driving while drowsy after 24 hours awake, resulting in a performance degradation that is the functional equivalent of a .10 blood alcohol level be irrelevant? Typically .08 is legally drunk! How can a condition in which 1/3 of those doing it outright fall asleep be militariy irrelevant? And who is more tired than soldiers typically weeks in the line, if not months or sometimes years?

https://sleepfoundation.org/sleep-topics/drowsy-driving-vs-drunk-driving-how-similar-are-they

Here's what the CDC has to say about driving drowsy and its effects.

https://www.cdc.gov/features/dsdrowsydriving/index.html

Falling asleep at the wheel is clearly dangerous, but being sleepy affects your ability to drive safely even if you don’t fall asleep. Drowsiness—

  • Makes drivers less able to pay attention to the road.1
  • Slows reaction time if you have to brake or steer suddenly.1
  • Affects a driver’s ability to make good decisions.1

Infographic - Drowsy Driving: Asleep at the Wheel.

Researchers estimate that more than 70 million Americans suffer from a sleep disorder. (Institute of Medicine, 2005).10

Infographic[PDF 152 KB]

Did You Know?

  • An estimated 1 in 25 adult drivers (aged 18 years or older) report having fallen asleep while driving in the previous 30 days.2-3
  • The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration estimates that drowsy driving was responsible for 72,000 crashes, 44,000 injuries, and 800 deaths in 2013.4 However, these numbers are underestimated and up to 6,000 fatal crashes each year may be caused by drowsy drivers.5-7

On the military side of things, an article one the importance of sleep to soldiers published from Stripes.com notes that a soldier running on only 3-4 hours a night for four-six days is the same as one with a 180-pound man who has five drinks under his belt. Who, I ask, is always tired in a combat zone once committed? The PBI often are in that mode, or worse, for weeks, months, even years! Believe these will be sobering.  

According to Dr. Thomas Balkin, chief of the Department of Behavioral Biology at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research, the military’s leading sleep research center,

"Sleep loss leads to reduced situational awareness," he said.

"Guys who are patrolling are constantly surveying the environment looking for signs of potential danger. With sleep loss you are less likely to notice these things or notice them relatively slowly," he said.

"Sleep-deprived soldiers still shoot accurately but knowing what to shoot can be a problem," Balkin added.

"Friendly-fire accidents are more likely when a soldier is sleep deprived. You are less likely to know which way is forward and have situational awareness of the battlefield," he said.

This article, "Losing Sleep" is by a Ranger, and what he says to say about effects of sleep loss and stress verges on terrifying, among other things, linking them in young veterans 20-24 to permanent brain damage of their developing pre-frontal cortexes (prevention of new neurons from developing, information uptake interference and decreased attention span). that's just the start. As best I can tell, none of this was understood during WW II, but it most ceratainly was happening anyway. The article will give you a tremendous education--you may wish you never got!

In an article specifically dealing with the effects of sleep loss or disruption on combat performance, I found this nugget.

Sleep deprivation degrades the most complex mental functions, including the ability to understand, adapt, and plan under rapidly changing circumstances. In contrast, simple psychomotor performance and physical strength and endu-

p200049f0g128001.jpg

FIGURE 7–1 Effect of 72 h of total sleep deprivation on cognitive performance of normal volunteer subjects. The combined curve is decomposed into circadian variability and a negatively accelerating decrement in performance.

Page 129 
Suggested Citation:" 7. The Effects of Sleep Deprivation on Performance During Continuous Combat Operations." Institute of Medicine. 1994. Food Components to Enhance Performance: An Evaluation of Potential Performance-Enhancing Food Components for Operational Rations. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press. doi: 10.17226/4563. 
×
 

endurance are unaffected. For example, a soldier can shoot as tight a cluster of rounds at a fixed target after 90 h without sleep as he or she can when well rested, but if he or she has to shoot at targets that pop up at random at random locations on a firing range, then his or her performance drops to below 10 percent of baseline (Haslam and Abraham, 1987).

Italics mine, and what is a battlefield typically but targets popping up at random? How can such a precipitious drop (granted, 90 hours, not 24) be of no consequence in a sim? And this is just range shooting!

Have run into all sorts of bizarre site connection problems on searches, so am going to stop for now, but I believe I've shown there's plenty of basis for degrading the spotting capabilities and reaction times of fatigued troops, and it's much worse for leaders, since decision making speed, quality, even morals and ethics go downhill long before shooting performance does.

Sorry about the various type sizes and fonts, but the controls are giving me all sorts of grief!

Regards,

John Kettler

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