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Posts posted by womble

  1. On 7/1/2021 at 8:31 AM, Bufo said:

    Turning a unit in the given direction will have the same effect. Cover arcs aren't needed just for this as some guys think.

    A Target Arc will turn a turreted vehicle's turret axis to bisect the arc it's given,  potentially meaning that the hull vision blocks aren't pointed in the direction of the TA while the hull axis is deflected from the turret weapon's axis. This might reduce the number of eyeballs that get a "chance to spot" something.

  2. Relative experience and leadership levels of the vehicles matters, as does prior information about the presence of a target and the actual viewing quality/vision aids of the given tank, and which of those are available can be affected by the axis of the target arc (whether that's a target armour or target anything arc). Terrain will have an effect too; it's possible that a tank sitting in ambush can have its LOS obscured if you're not careful about tree foliage, while still being visible to its putative ambush victim which hasn't got a tree in its face. And it's still random, so sometimes even the lower-chance-of-spotting element will get the drop on the one you'd 'expect' to spot and fire first.

    Once the PBEMs are over, you might get a better idea of the issues involved in the specific cases if you can cooperate with your opponent to go back and rerun that turn a few times to see if there's something systematic, or if someone just got a better dice roll.

  3. 2 hours ago, Larsen said:

    You want to use StuGs as TDs which they were not and they are mediocre in that role. There are better options. 

    For the same price? You really don't interest me enough to fire it up and dig out Jagdpanzer prices... It's not that want to use them that way, it's how they end up getting used, both in-game and historically, because of the strategic stances of the forces involved at that time of the war. And they're not "mediocre"; they can kill most Allied tanks (even most Allied tank marks; there were a lot fewer Churchills than Shermans and Cromwells in Normandy) and can stand up to the most common opponent at mid-or-greater ranges. As Assault guns, they're mediocre by that time in the war, having a low ammo count.

    Sherman 76s aren't as good as 75s in the HE-chucker role. But having some to engage the enemy armour, like a proper tank should be able to is a good idea.

    Unit pricing is a really tricky art. There a bunch of assumptions that have to be made, and if they're different to yours, you'll disagree with the pricing. Thus it will ever be. And BFC aren't going to enter into any discussion about it. And we're not going to be able to do anything about it. It is what it is. Buy those "Better options", and stop worrying about the missing "common weapon" in the artificial arena of a QB.

  4. 3 hours ago, dbsapp said:

    I guess, everybody who is interested in the topic of how artillery affects armored vehicles, should read «A direct hit with an HE round with a PD fuze consistently destroyed the various target vehicles» («Who Says Dumb Artillery Rounds Can’t Kill Armor?», Major (Retired) George A. Durham, Field Artillery November-December 2002. Pdf is easy to google.

    For the most part, I've been talking about the AP shell. Because CM vehicles will (right or wrong) elect to use an AP shell. The HE round will tear a turret off the KT, or just kill the crew, and doctrine was changed IRL to reflect that.

    But CM has limitations. One of those limitations is that teams of infantry can't spread out as far as they would IRL, so HE doesn't rock the world quite as hard as it "ought" to.

  5. I was working at a defense show the other year. A client had some gear mounted on a vehicle that they had to make sure they absolutely did not turn on by accident, because the bill for fried mobile phones would be astronomical. And it wasn't aimed at mobile phones. Drone denial around airports is a different animal to drone denial in a battlespace...

  6. 1 hour ago, Probus said:

    Aren't paintballs 300 m/s... or was that ft/sec?

    Either way it's going to ring the bell of the tank crew inside. 

    Ah, no. Paintballs do not travel at Mach 0.9ish... :) That would leave some welt...

    As to ringing the bell of the crew, the 152mm AP round won't come close to penetrating the glacis of a KT, let alone an Abrams. I'm sure the clang would be impressive, but that's way better than having 40 kilo of steel come roaring through your cramped fighting compartment...

  7. 2 hours ago, dbsapp said:

    It was a straight  shot from a distance of about 200 meters. Be it AP, or HE, anyway 152 mm round would destroy anything, Tiger or Abrams. 


    I'll assume you mean "square-on", by "straight". At 200m, yeah, the AP should've penetrated, without some fairly odd circumstances. Maybe even an Abrams. Though not from the front... :) It's only got a muzzle velocity of 600m/s.

  8. 10 hours ago, semmes said:

    So... in short:

    This is an inaccurate simulation, the coders are a bit lazy and we are all very happy with "magic" taking over.

     Glad to know, pity I couldn't see that in BFC web.



    Or, shorter:

    "There are limitations on what can be coded. We live with them."

    Did anyone express "happiness" about the situation?

    7 hours ago, dbsapp said:

    Playing CMRT and CMFR I noticed that there are considerable discrepancies among armor penetration models.

    E.g. in the Night in the opera (great mini campaign, by the way) my ISU-152 couldn't damage King Tiger by direct hit to the side armor. After receiving the hit King Tiger quickly turned the turrent and destroyed my ISU. In fact, the hit of 152 mm HE round to the King Tiger's, even if it didn't destroy tank completely, would render it ineffective and at least heavily injured the crew. 

    First, it probably wasn't an HE round (unless it had already expended its allotment of AP - I don't know how RT handles ammo loadout for the SU-152, but other assault guns in other titles get handed a small allocation of AP or HEAT rounds). Maybe something has changed, but even though a 152mm HE is probably more effective than the relatively low velocity APBC round that weapon chucks, it uses the same ammo selection criteria as every other unit that can choose HE or AP, and would choose the AP round for shooting at a KT. However, it still "ought" to get a penetration on the side, unless some additional 'deflection' angle is involved by the positioning of the vehicles, from the numbers I can easily find. That possibility is important, though. Was it a square-on shot? What range?

    It may also be that the general nerfing of HE effect to "compensate for" the coding limitations around infantry (one team per AS, mostly) have made the HE round's effectiveness against armour as well, if that was what was actually fired.

  9. If you've got a unit that's not going anywhere for a bit (I'll often choose the highest level HQ), give it "Pause indefinitely" order, then give it waypoints to each of the TRPs. Then when you "Show all movement paths", you can see where they are. As and when you need to actually move your TRP-keeper, you can usually find another unit that'll be static for a bit to hand over to.

    Depending on what you're doing with the TRPs, you can spread the "responsibility" out.

    As an extra wrinkle, you can put 50m target arcs at each of the waypoints so that you can actually see where the TRP's benenfits apply. Best if this is done when the spotter you're going to use to call in to the TRP is (one of) the one(s) with a waypoint on it.

  10. 1 hour ago, Larsen said:


    Bravo. You beautifully summed up what is wrong with tank comparison. There is so much wrong with it that I don't even know where to start.

    1. tanks' major task is not fighting other tanks. Their main purpose is to support infantry.

    2. the HE load of a StuG is 17-18 shells, while M4 has over 50. StuG has only one MG with 600 rounds and in order to use it it has to be unbuttoned. M4 has over 4K. M4 also carries a few smoke shells.

    3. M4 has a fast turret. In fact it is even faster than what Pz IV has.

    4. M4 can penetrate the upper hull and the front of the infrastructure on StuGs from the distances of up to 300M and achieve a partial penetration at distances up to 500K. For most QB maps those are the typical distances. In any case M4 main task is not to fight German armor - it is to support American infantry and in that role it works very well.

    I'm afraid I have to disagree with you, here. Or at least shade your definition. Yes, one of a tank's jobs is to be a moving pillbox and an assault gun, throwing HE at pesky enemy who won't be dissuaded by MG fire. They can outgun any infantry weapon and are (if you don't push too close) immune to anything the enemy pTruppen can do. But the other job of a Tank (specifically, rather than a TD, or an assault gun) is to "support the infantry" by protecting them from the enemy's  armour. Largely by blowing them up. In conceptual terms, the two have equal weight for a tank. TDs are meant to take out armour, primarily, and assault guns are principally to facilitate the advance of infantry against static threats. The M4's fast turret is only useful for vs-armour duels, and is entirely unimportant for giving the gropos a leg up (unless you're cavalier with the things and put them in ranges where they're in danger from infantry AT).

    Yes, Shermans spent more time supporting their dogface little brothers, but the ability to shut down the enemy armour was in toto as important, and by June '44, it lacked a little in that regard (hence Sherman 76s, Fireflys, M10s and so on). Unless you want to call a "vanilla" M4 an "assault gun"... If "supporting the infantry" was the primary consideration, you'd've had much lighter-armoured things with 105mm HE-chuckers and more MGs coming off the design boards, but "being there to kill Panzers" was job A to "breaking infantry resistance" as job 1.

    The StuG III is a wierd duck by that point in the war. It's "supposed" to be an assault gun, but the Germans aren't conducting many infantry assaults at all, let alone on prepared fortifications, but it's got decent frontal armour, and a good, tank-killing 75, so it's probably better considered a TD. If you can find a long (>500m) fire lane on your QB map, it can totally kill the bejazus out of any Sherman 75s trying to boost their infantry along that axis... I guess it depends what size of map you like to use for your QBs.

    But if you want a cheap HE-chucker, the StuG ain't it... PzIV is probably betterer.

  11. My woolly recollection is that the standard M4's short 75 does have difficulty penetrating the glacis of the StuG III, even at relatively close range, whereas the StuG's gun has no trouble whatsoever with any aspect of a Sherman's armour at the same ranges. So (assuming my memory is both accurate and representative) if you can control the initiative of the armour fight, StuGs are worth buying.

    Probably worth some controlled testing to see where the StuG's advantage pertains, and get an idea of how often it could be made to apply in a QB.

  12. 3 minutes ago, Probus said:

    Now this explains a lot of my games. I've seen where the detail of a shot trap (ricochet off turret hitting top of hull) is modeled on an early Panther. I would have guessed outbound armor was modelled also. 

    @womble, is the energy reduced at least?  If it is, it needs to be reduced just a bit more. If it's not, then double kills should not be a thing. 

    The shot-trap thing doesn't invoke "outbound" armour, AFAIK, it's just a ricochet off one plate onto another, easily-pierced one. There's no penetration in the first impact, so the engine doesn't, as I understand it, stop counting that vehicle's armour. Though most of the time, given the thin skin under the trap, it may as well not be there.

    I don't believe the energy is reduced at all by the outbound skin. It might be reduced by the amount needed to pen the first layer, but since that was a PzIV, it probably isn't material to the chances of a JS-II's chance of penetrating anything except a Jagd-whatever's glacis plate.

  13. 24 minutes ago, Vacilllator said:

    I for one have never really considered this, but I think observation backs it up and I would not doubt your word. 

    Is it right that it is so?  On a HT or even a Panzer IV perhaps it makes little difference but what if I penetrate the rear of let's say a Tiger and it goes straight out the front with no slowing, no deflection etc.?  Of course I fully realise it's not about to change, and given that I hadn't considered or even appreciate fully why it is so, I won't be losing any sleep over it 😉.

    By "right", do you mean "an accurate simulation", then no, obviously it's not. Steel plate is steel plate and takes energy out of whatever penetrates it. But I'd imagine that the designers considered the number of times that it may occur where a penetrating hit can go on to strike another target low enough to not burden the codebase with very-rarely-used calculations.

  14. One thing to remember when considering whether this works for you as part of the "simulation" is that the outbound armour skin isn't counted. So the PzIVs are no surprise at all, and no impediment to the shell carrying on and whomping a Tiger in the same shot, for that gun. I don't think CM can model deflections outside of projectile/armour interactions, so no, there won't be any deflection to a shell that penetrates. But, given the stipulation above about the armour that's counted, if there was some sort of random deflection once penetration is achieved, it would just mean that "lined up" would mean something different in the chaotic system generated than we might expect... :)

  15. 4 hours ago, Gungalley said:

     In CM, small arms fire dont seem to cause a lot of friendly fire (from my limited experience)...

    I can't give much useful help about your main question but I can shed light here... Your limited experience is 100% accurate within certain parameters in CM. Small arms are defined as bullets of less than 12mm calibre, so your Ma Deuce and its peers will inflict friendly casualties. And ricochets don't have any concept of "friendly", so even standard rifle and pistol calibre ammo can cause damage to your friends once it's bounced off a wall.

  16. 2 minutes ago, BornGinger said:

    It would be more realistic if foxholes and trenches weren't as visible as they are. If foxholes were just holes in the ground and more scattered instead of being four together and if trenches were designed differently too and none of them had sandbags they would all be harder to spot which would make their existence more of a surprise.

    There wouldn't then be any reason to try to be a "smart designer" and fill the scenario maps with empty foxholes and trenches.

    I hope Battlefront will make changes to have foxholes and trenches look and work more realistically.

    Just making them harder to spot than a big retroreflective blanket would be a start. I know they're "just expedient excavations", but most of the time you're better off without 'em.


  17. 8 hours ago, LongLeftFlank said:

    ...colour blind my entire adult life, to the point where my wife doesn't let me shop for my own clothes....

    I wear a lot of "black with one coloured thing"... I owned a nice pale grey t-shirt for a very long time, before someone commented that I must be secure in my sexuality to wear it. It was pale pink.

  18. 52 minutes ago, dbsapp said:

    Never thought that such level of ideological indoctrination is possible outside of laboratory environment, but you proved that I was wrong.

    And lo, mine eyes are open'd by your flawless rebuttal of my chains of thought.

  19. The Soviets had (the Russians maybe still have) the best intelligence gathering setup. There is no way that a rational assessment of the information they almost certainly had available to them would have led to an assessment that there was any danger whatsoever of being invaded by the West. 

    Of course all the exercises had the "defend and counterattack" framework. Can you imagine if they actually practised invading first? If the Western public got ahold of that, maybe there would have been a small chance of public opinion being swayed more towards building a force in Europe actually capable of the pre-emptive strike the Soviets claimed to be nervous of. It's as hilariously laughable as current Putinesque protestations of nervousness about contemporary NATO exercises near the border, and claims of feeling threatened by the Baltic States joining NATO.

    No, "The perfidious Imperialists want to attack us," was always (and remains) pure propaganda for internal consumption. At least in the sense of tanks and planes and bullets and piles and piles of irradiated bodies. Economic competition was much more effective against the Soviets, and if Russia doesn't pivot away from reliance on natural gas exports, will once again put the squeeze on the kleptocrats as Europe reduces its dependency on supplies from the East.

    The middle of the C20th offers up plenty of examples of Russia flexing its muscles in its own backyard that don't need much shading to make the NATO public somewhat leery of Russian claims to not be expansionist. And those last right til today.

    Any numerical inferiority on the part of the Soviets existed only because the US was the gorilla backing NATO. Similarly, statements about being "surrounded", and "not having land access". Sure, the Bering strait was an insurmountable barrier, but there ain't no Bering Strait in central Europe. Take the Americans out of the equation, and pushing the borders of Stalinism to the Atlantic doesn't look so dumb: industrialised areas, educated populations. Access to warm water ports. The Nazis had proven the concept of occupation was workable; without the amphibious invasions in the Med and Normandy, those nations under the jackbooted heel would have been a long time winning their freedom. And the Soviets had much more resource and, to be frank, perceived ruthlessness (Stalin killed at least as many as Hitler, remember and those were supposed to be his; imagine how willing he would have been to do unto "the other") to apply to subjugation than Germany did in the 30s and 40s, if they wanted to go that way. 

    We Europeans have the Americans to thank for making the concept of invasion sufficiently dicey that we never had to nuke the Soviets (and get nuked in return). I'm a child of the 80s, and I don't recall sharing the much-touted "existential angst", cos even as a teenager, I knew enough to be pretty sure the CCCP had no real interest in trying it on, in the face of what the West would end up throwing at it. And I knew in my bones the West had no military designs on Warsaw Pact territory; the "best" militaries in the world have tried it on a couple of occasions, and ended up bugging out with the bitten off stumps of their tails between their remaining legs.

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