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TOW vehicle spotting

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Is it just me or are some of the American TOW-equipped AT vehicles (Mainly the LAV-AT and the M1134 Stryker variant) absolutely pathetic at spotting enemy units? I don't have any issue spotting (and destroying) enemy armor with TOW-equipped Humvees, and the regular LAV variants see enemy vehicles just fine, but not with AT variants or AT strikers.

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Certainly in CMSF1 I noticed that ATGM and FO's seem much worse at spotting enemy units than Scouts or HQ's.  Even when I had an ATGM or FO sitting on top of a Scout or HQ, the ATGM or FO hard a hard time seeing what the HQ and Scout could easily see.

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On 2/11/2020 at 4:51 PM, Erwin said:

Certainly in CMSF1 I noticed that ATGM and FO's seem much worse at spotting enemy units than Scouts or HQ's.  Even when I had an ATGM or FO sitting on top of a Scout or HQ, the ATGM or FO hard a hard time seeing what the HQ and Scout could easily see.

I haven't noticed it with dismounted ATGMs, but I don't often play as anyone other than the Americans. Javelins seem to have really good spotting (which, if what I've heard about how highly regarded the sights on that thing are, makes a lot of sense).

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Javelins have incredible spotting, which makes the launcher useful to carry around, even without missiles or hard targets to fire at. That's the reason why the launcher has an slot under equipment - the thermals are a powerful resource, and one you should pay a lot of attention to.
 

I haven't noticed an issue with FOs or TOWs, but then the squad sizes are usually lower than with scouts and HQs. Fewer eyes are going to spot worse, inherently, since quite aside from covering a wider area, the die roll that goes into each spotting cycle is going to happen a lot more with more dice to throw. Same reason why larger vehicle crews will spot better, or why BMPs with mounted troops have better situational awareness than when dismounted (so you have have situations where you accept the risk of losing the squad for a better chance of fighting with the vehicle itself).

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2 hours ago, domfluff said:

the thermals are a powerful resource, and one you should pay a lot of attention to.

Good hint re using em for spotting only.  Unfortunately, playing Red forces a lot recently it's noticeable how much worse the ATGM and FO's are at spotting than Scouts and HQ units.  Even when literally placed on top of each other (so one would think they would communicate), the ATGM's and FO's have a much harder time seeing what the Scouts and HQ can easily spot.

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C2 is something you have to pay a lot of attention to with Red forces. Setting up networks to share info vertically and horizontally, with redundancies to cover yourself.

I generally find it's a good rule of thumb to expect any given element to perform precisely one job, but that it's useful to make sure they're in pairs at least.

 

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If they're within four action spots, there is (as far as I'm aware) no reason for zero comms between them - at least in terms of sharing spotting contacts.

This doesn't happen immediately (I'd imagine it takes time to share the information between them). That time may well be troop quality dependent, and I imagine there's a die roll involved , since timing doesn't seem to be consistent. If there's a random chance of sharing spotting contacts each cycle, then it's possible you could just get unlucky and never share the contact.

If so, that's not even unrealistic, I think - missing or patchy details are a thing.

 

Incidentally, that's the correct way to use spies in Uncon forces, I think. Each spy comes in a group, and they'll share info via voice/visual comms if they're close enough and have LOS to each other. To get those spotting contacts across the map then, the best way is to have one of the team sharing info horizontally with a spy from a different team, overlapping their areas of operation. That way you have the best chance of sharing spotting contacts across the width of the map as quickly as possible. Since there's no overall structure, it's otherwise hard to co-ordinate Uncon C2 networks, so you kinda have to build them manually in game.

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In July 2017 I did some experiments to determine the effects of closed vs. open vehicle hatches when horizontally sharing information. Tested in CMFI v2.0 Engine 4.  There is a topic on it buried somewhere in the forum.  Below were my observations at the time (I think this is still accurate). 

Infantry may horizontally share information with a buttoned tank when within 32 meters.

Two armor vehicles that are both unbuttoned may horizontally share info. when within 32 meters.

When the reporting armored vehicle is buttoned it must be within 8 meters of both armor and infantry to horizontally share (report) information.    

The reporting unit needs to be unbuttoned to horizontally share (report) information at 32 meters.

A buttoned unit will not share information unless it is within approximately 8 meters.

Information sharing is one-way if the units are approximately 9 to 32 meters apart and one is buttoned. The unbuttoned will share the buttoned will not.     

 

Before a mission check the chain of command.  If there are attached units that are not in the C2 chain handle this matter through liaisons and/or the grouping of appropriate HQ teams in the same TOC.   

For the most reliable horizontal information sharing place units adjacent to each other with all vehicles Opened.

 

Edited by MOS:96B2P

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The ATGM strykers were used as a company asset for overwatch. Javelins never left the trucks. The TOWs have awesome thermal sights whether mounted or dismounted.

Edited by Attilaforfun

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5 hours ago, MOS:96B2P said:

In July 2017 I did some experiments to determine the effects of closed vs. open vehicle hatches when horizontally sharing information. Tested in CMFI v2.0 Engine 4.  There is a topic on it buried somewhere in the forum.  Below were my observations at the time (I think this is still accurate). 

Infantry may horizontally share information with a buttoned tank when within 32 meters.

Two armor vehicles that are both unbuttoned may horizontally share info. when within 32 meters.

When the reporting armored vehicle is buttoned it must be within 8 meters of both armor and infantry to horizontally share (report) information.    

The reporting unit needs to be unbuttoned to horizontally share (report) information at 32 meters.

A buttoned unit will not share information unless it is within approximately 8 meters.

Information sharing is one-way if the units are approximately 9 to 32 meters apart and one is buttoned. The unbuttoned will share the buttoned will not.     

 

Before a mission check the chain of command.  If there are attached units that are not in the C2 chain handle this matter through liaisons and/or the grouping of appropriate HQ teams in the same TOC.   

For the most reliable horizontal information sharing place units adjacent to each other with all vehicles Opened.

 

That's useful - so the magic numbers to remember are 8 meters when one or both are buttoned and 32 meters when unbuttoned. 

And we're concluding there is an engine problem in that some inf units which are literally in the same action square (ie less than 8 meters apart) for some reason do not communicate.

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Posted (edited)
On 2/13/2020 at 10:21 AM, domfluff said:

Javelins have incredible spotting, which makes the launcher useful to carry around, even without missiles or hard targets to fire at. That's the reason why the launcher has an slot under equipment - the thermals are a powerful resource, and one you should pay a lot of attention to.

Same goes for the RPG-29 in Uncon units (by Red standards, at least), it's pretty much the only NVG equipped weapon they have.....I often wonder whether this is why the AI leads with RPGs so often in the modern titles?  In CM:SF1, the grandaddy of all these games, the RPG-29 was pretty common for Fighter units and sending it out front to spot makes good sense.

1 hour ago, Aquila-SmartWargames said:

There is definitely something wrong with the ATGM vehicle variants.

 I'd be inclined to agree with this statement.....I also believe ATGM teams are spotted too easily.

 

Edited by Sgt.Squarehead

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