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Tactics Questions


Erwin
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The main thing I enjoy about CMSF (and theoretically CMA altho' I haven't ever seen any large CMA maps) is the much larger maps on average than CMBN and CMFI.

However, I am never sure what to do in the first turns of a scenario on a large map when one starts with recon units (incl vehicles) and the main force "will arrive over the next 30+ minutes" as reinforcements.

In RL, would one drive the recon vehicles down the road or across terrain until shot at? (In the game of course this is usually suicide. But, I suppose you get to draw fire and maybe figure out what it out there quickly.)

Or, should one assume contact in imminent, thus dismount the recon vehicles and move cautiously forward on foot even though one could have a looong way to walk to contact.

If contact is imminent, (and since one is the player of a scenario one knows this of course), then what is the purpose of the recon units? Would it not make more sense to wait 10-30mins for the main forces to arrive and keep the recon units someplace safe?

However, if the sensible tactic is to wait for the main force, then why start with any recon units on the map at all? Why force players to sit repeatedly clicking GO, (if in WEGO), or letting the clock run out (if in RT)?

Am curious as to how other players, esp those with RL experience would proceed in these situations.

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How I use recce stuff does depend on a/ the mission b/ when my reinforcements come along c/ terrain. So the answer is 'it depends' ;)

As a general principle if I have recce vehicles I'll move them up through covered lanes i.e. free from fire with overwatch. So generally lead with one vehicles others watch,to cover, then leap frog. If the terrain is more dense e.g. woods/built up area etc then I'd be more inclined to dismount and move scouts up on foot, clear an area then move the vehicles up.

Ultimately you'll lose someone - but that's the job of recce in CM. Dangerous work.

The trick is to lose as little as you can whilst gaining as much info as you can about where the enemy is, assets etc.

In RL the whole business of recce is more varied. But most of these jobs would make for very boring CM scenarios (my mate was in the RM as a sniper and they were used for conducting recces and OPs. Hours, maybe days hunkered down in a hide watching empty terrain... His highpoint was sniping Challenger tank commanders (using TESEK) whilst their tanks drove into full view of his hide and laagered there.

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True, you may know enemy contact is imminent and youmay know this in reality from human intelligence, drone recon etc. That information is passed down to you after analysis at headqaurters/ What youprobably don't know is exact enemy locations rthough limited information might be allowed for and is availablr.

It is probably best to be cautious witth your recon elements, Using the terrain carefully is probably the best way to ensure recon survives and can be used to best effect - which of course is easoer said than done - which is why the recon boys get the danger money :D

Don't forget you can always dismount crews and do a little foot recon with them. Infantry seem somewhat harder to spot. And you can get them to crawl forward using the slow order. In cocealing terrain they are so much harder to spot.

You still have to think about where the enemy might be and where you want to attack when your reinforcements arrive. Having a better idea of what the defences are before the main attack goes in helps you avoid nasty surprises, suppress thedefenders with artillery, place smoke etc

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With CMSF the thing is that you are certain that the enemy is out there. Therefore in most cases I see no point in advancing Recce vehicles with the purpose of drawning fire, bucause there is a high probability that they will get shot.

Usually I dismount and try to locate enemy positions, mostly enemy AFVs, tanks or bunkers , less ofter infantry and plan air or artillery strikes on them.

I plan my tactics with the aim of incurring no casualties at all (of course in partice this seldom happens) but it is good guide for discarding courses of action where getting killed is more than (roughly) 10% probable

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Thanks for the useful feedback. It's interesting to see how others approach the use of recon units when every scenario effectively starts after the recon has told you there is enemy about.

I suppose what we are really doing in any of the CM games is more accurately called "scouting" after recon (the briefing) has told us that enemy is present.

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Generally I move in cover to an area that seems to have a good field of view. Then I dismount my recce unit a bit back from that area. I give the recce unit a small cover arc and have them move quickly almost to the position where I want them. Then I slow move them into that position. this very often works very well.

I most often wait for the main force before taking any direct action.

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Do you regularly dismount your armored recon vehicles and use em as foot recon?

I am playing Khabour Trail campaign and the Canadian Coyotes seem to be always present at setup, with the main force coming later.

In some cases it seems safe to move em as vehicles, but in others, enemy ATGM's are a threat as soon as one moves out of the set-up zones. In these cases I wonder what is the purpose of the recon units in the game since they don't appear to have any extra capabilities than regular troops.

I know most of the answers to my questions are pretty common sense. I simply wondered if there was some RL doctrine that would help.

It would be great if recon and snipers (and other specialized troops like engineers) had enhanced abilities to account for their extra training so one could use em in specialized roles rather than as "light inf cannon fodder".

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I find that Snipers make excellent reece assets. A short cover arc is a must until the big show starts since their reach is fairly long with the sniper rifles. It seems that they spot better then regular infantry, and a smaller team is harder to spot.

All of the tips given here are good ones, I would say write em all down so you can reference it while you play.

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Re better/longer spotting ability I recall there was a discussion about that maybe a year or more ago. I think FO's and snipers and maybe some other unit(s) had the ability to see several meters further through terrain that obstructed the LOS of ordinary units.

Anyone remember that thread or can confirm this phenomenon?

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Re better/longer spotting ability I recall there was a discussion about that maybe a year or more ago. I think FO's and snipers and maybe some other unit(s) had the ability to see several meters further through terrain that obstructed the LOS of ordinary units.

Anyone remember that thread or can confirm this phenomenon?

Spotters and Snipers are very good recce teams. However I would be very surprised if they could see through LOS obstructions.

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re FO's and snipers etc I was referring to simply seeing a few meters further into (say) wheatfields, woods etc...

Regarding my questions re "best practices for recon" it's cos I am having a lot of trouble with Khabour Trail - the Canadian campaign.

In Khabour Trail it's been frustrating that altho' I have been able to win with under 10% casualties per mission so far, I find after 5 missions, my force seems too weak to accomplish mission 6.

Mission 5 I have tried a couple of times, but the only way my FO or Snipers (in xnt observation positions) can see the enemy ATG's, ATR's and ATGM's is when the enemy actually fires at one of my vehicles - which usually means a dead or degraded vehicle.

But, if I send inf on foot as recon, they also get hammered. And I only have 81mm and 60mm mortars as arty.

I was hoping someone had a brilliant way of doing recon that I hadn't tried (or attacking a town bristling with RPG's and ATR's).

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