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Bearstronaut

Stuart Recce - What's the point?

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Posted (edited)

The Stuart Recce seems pointless. Every time I have one the crew just gets killed using the M2. Why did the British take the turrets off of these vehicles?

Edited by Bearstronaut

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Because, in RL they are more effective compared how the Game Portrays them...Yes, I feel your pain on how the Game Mechanics handle unbuttoned Crews in General, especially vehicles like the Stuart Recon :-[

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That and it’s functional role was in real life more than likely significantly different than how they get used in CM.  That is a shortcoming that applies to a whole range of recon vehicles. The kinds of situations these would normally be used make for boring tactical combat situations. There have been occasional efforts towards doing something where your goal is to spot specific units, but it is pretty rare and that more than simple map size is where it might make a difference. 

Recon in a standard tactical battle is something that most of us don’t do well.  Recon for an operational context is something CM isn’t really gonna be that much fun to do often. 

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Considering we recently got the hull down command, which finds a hull down position facing the marker -- it'd be useful to have "Find LOS" command. This just orders the unit to try to get eyes on indicated marker. I find it's really difficult to predict if a recce-ing unit will have LOS at a position or not. The positions I suspect to be good spotting positions, end up not seeing anything.

The button/unbutton thing, for the most time, seems like all or nothing. Either the commander stretches out in his full height, or he's curled up in the hull. I think I recall Sherman commanders just poking their head out enough to get their eyes out of the hatch. I know the panther's copulas were specifically designed so that the hatch would push upward. This would allow the commander to peak out while protecting the top of their head.

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1 hour ago, sburke said:

That and it’s functional role was in real life more than likely significantly different than how they get used in CM.  That is a shortcoming that applies to a whole range of recon vehicles. The kinds of situations these would normally be used make for boring tactical combat situations. There have been occasional efforts towards doing something where your goal is to spot specific units, but it is pretty rare and that more than simple map size is where it might make a difference. 

Recon in a standard tactical battle is something that most of us don’t do well.  Recon for an operational context is something CM isn’t really gonna be that much fun to do often. 

Very true, I am afraid.

In the old days, I used to say CM is a model and a model can‘t model each and every RL aspect.

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2 hours ago, Bearstronaut said:

The Stuart Recce seems pointless. Every time I have one the crew just gets killed using the M2. Why did the British take the turrets off of these vehicles?

IIRC one reason for removing the turrets was that have them an lower profile, and am sure thats also an benefit in CM right, easier to hide them and more places can be used for hull down positions, exposing just that crewmember and not the entire vehicle?

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Posted (edited)

I have to agree with some of the above comments. Having them in the game is both historically valid, and far from "pointless". You just have to bear in mind how they were used during WW2, and keep that in mind, in game. One, their pre - battle function, providing intel. Which in game terms means going out in front of your troops and providing the info that we are then provided with during the set-up phase. Two, garnering more info either by moving into a hull-down position, or having the crew dismount and find themselves a decent vantage point.

Edited by Warts 'n' all

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Or just send them blazing forward as scouts.

the only good scout is a dead one, for sure you have found the enemy when that happens.

Really, I do try to keep them alive, but it seldom happens. But sending units like that as you recon, is really a good thing.

Knowing where I can move my main forces is very important, I love units like that, which might survive a out post or something along that lines. But getting that information quickly is worth the risk of such units being sacrificed

 

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14 hours ago, slysniper said:

Or just send them blazing forward as scouts.

the only good scout is a dead one, for sure you have found the enemy when that happens.

Channelling your inner Ken ( @c3k )I see :D

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If you are in a recon vehicle and you find that you are using your weapon then you are probably either performing a task that your unit wasn't designed to perform or you were caught by surprise.  I would think that in the case of the Stuart Recon if you are using your .50 cal then you probably screwed up.  I'm talking in the real life use of the vehicle not the in game use.  There were situations, especially with German recon units, where recon units were pressed into front line service, but in those cases the vehicles were typically left out of harms way as much as possible while the recon troops themselves would be used as basic foot infantry.  A recon vehicle would more typically be positioned somewhere that a vehicle commander could use his binoculars to scan the terrain for information and in many cases that scanning would probably be done on foot with the vehicle in a concealed spot nearby.  I have run across several personal accounts of WW2 type recon although it would probably take a lot of digging for me to find the relevant passages since I don't remember exactly where I read them in many cases.

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I understand that the vehicle was historical and therefore included in the game. I also try and use them for recon purposes only when I am commanding a combined arms unit. The problem usually comes up in some of the smaller scenarios where you are in command of only a recce unit.

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2 hours ago, ASL Veteran said:

A recon vehicle would more typically be positioned somewhere that a vehicle commander could use his binoculars to scan the terrain for information and in many cases that scanning would probably be done on foot with the vehicle in a concealed spot nearby.  I have run across several personal accounts of WW2 type recon 

+1  This. 

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4 hours ago, ASL Veteran said:

...in many cases that scanning would probably be done on foot with the vehicle in a concealed spot nearby.

In the first scenario of the TF Raff campaign, the US player starts out with a pair of ACs and a scout team. While the scouts are coming up on foot, I quickly move the ACs up to the feature labeled Base of Fire. But not quite all the way to the hedgerow. Instead, I park them an AS back and dismount the crews. The crews are given circular Target Arcs of a meter or two to keep them from giving their positions away and then sneaked up to the hedgerow to observe. After a few minutes, they begin to spot enemy teams and when the first platoon of infantry arrive about five minutes later, are able to point them out for the grunts to bring them under fire.

Michael

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I understand Brit recce units in the field were not particularly happy with the decision to remove the turrets. Because... you know... there's no turret afterward! But recce with a lower silhouette and weighing several tons less with the resulting increase in speed has its benefits. The way CM scenarios are set up recce of that sort is mostly no longer needed. You already have a general idea where the enemy is (on the other side of the board). Recce locates the forward line of contact then lets the other guys to the fighting.

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Paddy :- "Ah, Field Marshall, wills yerse listen to thes 'ere idjut going on about "Brit recce units". It was me and the boys from County Meath who found Model's stash of John Martin's Guinness, was it not?"

Monty:- "Yes it was, but how is that going to help get my staff car out of the mud?"

  

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1 hour ago, DerKommissar said:

I can imagine the Hun would be a wee bit confused about a turret-less Stuart. Is it knocked out? Has it been scuttled?

On the other hand, if it's rolling along towards your position, you might think it worthwhile to put a shot into it just on general principles.

;)

Michael

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Posted (edited)
On 29.4.2018 at 1:45 PM, ASL Veteran said:

If you are in a recon vehicle and you find that you are using your weapon then you are probably either performing a task that your unit wasn't designed to perform or you were caught by surprise.  I would think that in the case of the Stuart Recon if you are using your .50 cal then you probably screwed up.  I'm talking in the real life use of the vehicle not the in game use.  There were situations, especially with German recon units, where recon units were pressed into front line service, but in those cases the vehicles were typically left out of harms way as much as possible while the recon troops themselves would be used as basic foot infantry.  A recon vehicle would more typically be positioned somewhere that a vehicle commander could use his binoculars to scan the terrain for information and in many cases that scanning would probably be done on foot with the vehicle in a concealed spot nearby.  I have run across several personal accounts of WW2 type recon although it would probably take a lot of digging for me to find the relevant passages since I don't remember exactly where I read them in many cases.

Hm, a sentence from a Bundeswehr instruction manual for Panzeraufklärer comes to my mind again: „The Panzeraufklärer seeks contact with the enemy and gives battle successfully.“

Agreed, that was in the 80‘s and the doctrine changed meanwhile. And agreed further, the Bundeswehr Panzeraufklärer in those days were, partially equipped with Leopard tanks, a little more robust, than German WW2 Reccon troops.

Edited by StieliAlpha

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19 minutes ago, StieliAlpha said:

Hm, a sentence from a Bundeswehr instruction manual for Panzeraufklärer comes to my mind again: „The Panzeraufklärer seeks contact with the enemy and gives battle successfully.“

Agreed, that was in the 80‘s and the doctrine changed meanwhile. And agreed further, the Bundeswehr Panzeraufklärer in those days were, partially equipped with Leopard tanks, a little more robust, than German WW2 Reccon troops.

It may go back further than that. I remember reading somewhere 40 years ago a comparison of German and Allied recon styles during WW II in which it was said that while Allied recon units achieved their missions mostly by passive observation, German recon units were expected to fight for such information and were equipped accordingly.

Michael

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Posted (edited)

There were variants for this vehicle as well, there was a command version and a gun tractor version. I am not sure what level of command the HQ version was but I bet it was better to be in a stuart recce than a jeep. I noticed in the game it allow for two passengers I think.

Edited by gundolf

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Posted (edited)

The general thrust that most CM scenarios are not scenarios where recce units excel I would agree with fully, but in addition to that the 1:1 nature of CM + the rather static animations makes gun turrets more dangerous than they probably should be. The gunners in most vehicles stand essentially upright with a decent portion of their bodies exposed to enemy fire and switch between unbuttoned and buttoned in a rather binary fashion.

 You can see it in this video where both the men firing from the half-track, the man sitting in the track, and the .50 gunner are relatively high up.  More so than would be absolutely necessary. The Bren gunner is firing from a fully standing position when huddling below the armor deck and resting the Bren on the vehicle would likely be more stable. Around the 1:10 mark the gunner engages infantry within 20-30 meters of him who are using an identifiable object as concealment. The gunner maintains an upright position on the gun while engaging and remains upright between bursts. He is not receiving return fire, but if he was it seems possible that he could drop down behind the gun and spray the object with fire dynamically popping up and down to check his fires.


Compare that to this video from a gunner who is taking fire. (2:28 mark or so)
 


After receiving near misses the gunner is only exposing himself to fire a burst at the enemy and is otherwise below the armor. This sort of dynamic up/down action isn't seen in CM and even the base stance in CM is relatively high. In CM the gunner also has to be up on the gun to fire it. In most combat videos you see the gunner will also be on the gun when firing, but occasionally you will see a gunner firing from a position that keeps him largely below the armor.


This is a limitation of programmer/animator time, and I wouldn't expect to see gunners dynamically moving while firing on targets. However, I think its important to understand this  limitation so that the player can make decisions not only around tactics but also with better knowledge of the tool they are using.

Edited by Pelican Pal
youtube embed went badly

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On 4/29/2018 at 6:10 PM, Warts 'n' all said:

Paddy :- "Ah, Field Marshall, wills yerse listen to thes 'ere idjut going on about "Brit recce units". It was me and the boys from County Meath who found Model's stash of John Martin's Guinness, was it not?"

Monty:- "Yes it was, but how is that going to help get my staff car out of the mud?"

  

You Brits have an odd sense of humor... and I damn well appreciate it.

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