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Odd happening - a bad day for F Company


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Elements of F company - are having a really bad day in a recent QB I am fighting.

I had three Shermans from F company: the CO in a 76 sherman his XO in a 75 and the 105 assault gun.

The 76 Sherman got the jump on a Panther and a PzIV at the same time. He managed to hit and KO the Panther with a side hit, reload and get another hit on the side of the PzIV before the enemy reacted. Both hits were penetrating. The PzIV unphased returned fire, one hit one KO'ed Sherman. Oh well I thought bad luck boys but at least that Panther was out of the battle and the PzIV appeared to be immobilized - a fact that was established later give the tank did not move for many many turns.

The 105 Sherman after some maneuvering got an in cover LOS to the same PzIV. First shot nailed him in the side at an angle. Again no effect return fire from the PzIV - one shot one more KO'ed Sherman. Damn talk about a bad day.

OK, so far no big deal - stuff happens all is good - sucks but good. And this might not actually have any bearing on what happened next but it setups up my sad tail.

I gave up trying to KO that enemy tank and the battle has progressed. I have a Sherman left the enemy has another, fully operational, PzIV left. Final minutes of the battle this pesky PzIV trys to flank my Sherman but I manage to get a smoke screen up and get away - into the woods. My opponent in a fit of crazy drives through my shattered infantry lines, through my smoke screen and chases my tank into the woods. OMG talk about scary. I manage to maneuver and make the right choices so that in the woods (where you can only see about 30m distance) my Sherman is able to spot the PzIV first and I get the drop on him and fire, scoring a penetrating hit in the final seconds of a turn. Yay, I think, I have finally come out ahead.

The next turn comes and the PzIV looks totally fine. It starts turning its turret. Oh no I think here we go again. But the Sherman crew scramble and get another round out before disaster strikes. Another penetrating hit. Again nothing. A few moments later the PzIV crew bails - thank you. The PzIV is still showing green. My infantry and the Sherman take care of the crew - all of them. Then the Sherman crew proceed to put round after round after round into the PzIV at 30m range and the damn thing is still showing as operational and no flames.

My Sherman has hit this thing a total of 6 - 8 times (I messed up my count but still 6 times???). Most of those hits were full penetrations and a few were partial. I do not see how this is possible. The PzIV is showing as green and OK when I select it. These two tanks are close, really close and the Sherman is hitting the PzIV in the front but at a nearly 45 degree angle. I get that that angle is not ideal but 6 or more penetrating hits at 30m. I don't think that should be survivable.

I have given my Sherman a cover arc away from this uber tank because I need the crew to pay attention to the German infantry that just showed up and immobilized the Sherman.

I have a saved game turn if anyone on the test team wants to investigate.

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Could this just be a case of the Sherman crew being able to see the IV well enough to target it, through the cruddy viewing of a forest, but that same cruddy visibility meaning they can't tell that they destroyed it ages ago, and the "unluck" is just that no hit has yet brewed it up, announcing to the world (including a Sherman peering through tress) that it's properly dead? Worth checking with your opponent (ask him to note the answer now, and let you know when the game's over, if FoW is at all precious)?

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I'm pretty sure that green-base is ok, if you can see it at all.

That is, I've never come across an event where a tank is KO'd to its owner, but shows as ok to the enemy.

It seems that tanks survive extraordinarily well all of a sudden - perhaps some unintended alteration in 2.00/2.01

That said, I feel for you, Ian, I've also had the most bizarre "bad-day" events in a QB currently ongoing. Will be posting pics for laughs soon.

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Could this just be a case of the Sherman crew being able to see the IV well enough to target it, through the cruddy viewing of a forest, but that same cruddy visibility meaning they can't tell that they destroyed it ages ago, and the "unluck" is just that no hit has yet brewed it up, announcing to the world (including a Sherman peering through tress) that it's properly dead? Worth checking with your opponent (ask him to note the answer now, and let you know when the game's over, if FoW is at all precious)?

Interesting. I do not think that is modeled. If I am wrong this could explain it.

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It seems that tanks survive extraordinarily well all of a sudden - perhaps some unintended alteration in 2.00/2.01

That is what I am afraid of - and why I posted. The first two incidents are explainable - bad stuff happens. And when it does Murphy says it will be "to" you. But the last one multiple close range hits is just a big scary.

That said, I feel for you, Ian, I've also had the most bizarre "bad-day" events in a QB currently ongoing. Will be posting pics for laughs soon.

Good, will I feel better watching your misery - probably not. But thanks for the thought anyway :)

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In addition, when I was moaning about Stuarts surviving Schreck hits ( penetrations ), I was told that it has a small-ish warhead and Fausts are much more likely to give you a kill.

Riiiiiight. Just had a Sherman survive a shower of abstracted-Close-Assault-grenades AND a Faust. And it just calmly mowed everyone down. Grrrr

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do you have a save from that Sherman/Pz IV fight? It might be worth a look. IS this CMBN or CMFI? I am in a fight with Broadsword in CMBN and sadly my Pz IVS have not shown any invulnerability to Sherman fire.

Yes, I archive all turns in an active game so I have them - and am happy to share. Shall I PM you with dl link and pw? It might take until tomorrow morning until I can get some time on the correct computer.

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Interesting. I do not think that is modeled. If I am wrong this could explain it.

I'm pretty sure it is. My recollection is a BFC rep saying that, and I've seen situations in testing (hotseat) where the shooter keeps firing at a tank that it thinks is still viable, even though from the owner's side it's destroyed. This situation usually doesn't persist for very long, though; 6 additional penetrations without some kind of conclusive result is at the very least an outlier.

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I have sent info to @sburke and have been asked for more. Thanks for looking.

@womble, I noticed at the end of the next turn the PzIV is now showing as destroyed. I failed to check during the turn so I do not know when that happened. It is possible that this is exactly what is going on. Certainly the visibility in the woods is very short.

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Interest piqued and PBEMs in recess, I did a little test. I used pre-dawn to generate "poor visibility" on an open field, and had a battalion of Elite, Fanatic, +2 Stuarts Hunt towards the flank of a battalion of PzIvs and a company of StuGs (same soft stats) from a mile out. This in FI 1.01.

The first thing I noticed was that the Fanatic Stuarts didn't stop as they were supposed to (on Hunt orders) when they spotted targets. I'd hoped that Hunt would stop the forward progress at the extremes of visibility, so we'd get to see some edge limits. But no luck. Stoopid Fanatics...

So I did it again, and left the stuarts static at the order break before the turn where if they kept advancing they'd see the targets. And a short while stationary, with their close covered arcs cancelled, and they started shooting. Range about 650m between the lines.

I chose the Stuarts because I thought their little gun was less likely to cause as many catastrophic "obvious" kills, and turned the IVs sideways so that penetration was likely. Turns out that the first surmise was accurate, and the second measure was largely unnecessary - at that range, most frontal hits are penetrations, too.

The second thing worth noting is that the StuGs, interspersed with their PzIV buddies, remained unspotted for the entirety of the test. They are noticeably more difficult to spot, even on a flat field.

Third, the advancing Stuarts spotted the side-on IVs much better than vice versa. Not too surprising when the IVs only have their commander able to look in the direction of the little tanks, and the Stuarts are so much smaller objects to spot. All tanks were buttoned to make seeing as difficult as possible.

The 37mm, as expected, punched through the IVs' side and turret armour pretty much every time, and mostly took several hits to kill their target. The most shots "past KOed" from a single Stuart was 3, though one unlucky IV that was being targetted by 5 Stuarts suffered 13 hits after it was "Destroyed".

Fourth, the shooting Stuarts could not always see enough of the target to see the crew casualties.

This test convinces me that (at least in FI 1.01) a shooter can perceive a target to not be dead yet when it actually is. I think (although testing with 37mm doesn't actually say anything about the destructive effects of the 75mm in Ian's example in the OP) it's not beyond the bounds of possibility that a IV takes, say, 3 shots to kill, the second causing abandonment, and then the Sherman puts another 3 shots in before being convinced the steed is actually sufficiently flogged.

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I'd need to see his opponents side to be sure, but from Ian's side:

Turn 56 The Sherman fires 2 rounds before the Pz IV even spots it, both hit trees (man you guys must love driving tanks into the woods hunting one another. I don't think I have ever played anything quite like this LOL ) When the Pz IV finally spots the Sherman and begins to rotate it's turret, the Sherman finally strikes home. In the final seconds the Pz IV turret has stopped and I assume one crewman is down.

Turn 58 The Sherman continues to fire while also apparently trying to move. Meanwhile infantry from both sides are tossing grenades etc. Pretty confused fight. The Sherman puts about 3 rounds into the Pz before the crew (4 crew) bails and then proceeds to dump a few more rounds in. I assume the crew bailed from an intact tank.

Without being able to see damage from the German side I assume though it was being hit, the angle of fire was such that the Pz IV while battered was not considered destroyed. I don't know that it is FOW, it could simply be the angle of hit while battering the front corner was not causing anything fatal.

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I have sent @sburke the enemy turns.

Yes, that was a wild ending to a hard fought game. This QB map has two objectives. Part of my force was sent to the other objective with the idea of getting a toe hold but not taking it fully until I saw how things unfolded. The rest of my force was assigned to take this one. As the game was ending my toe hold force was dislogged and this group had not quite secured the last corner of the objective. That would have left my loosing. So yeah very desperate. My goal was to get as much fire power into those woods and into that corner of the objective as possible. I knew he had guys in there that were in poor shape but I also knew he had more coming - including that tank.

Fortunately for me his guys were in worse shape than mine and I was able to drive them out thus securing the draw - in the last 30 seconds of the game.

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From the German side

Turn 56/57 I was wrong here, no crew were injured. In fact there was minimal damage to the Pz IV, however the crew was panicking now.

Turn 58/59

First round takes out the radio operator and nails the engine. The Pz IV was now immobilized.

Second round hits track further damaging, but as Pz is already immobile, it adds very little.

Third round has no additional effect, but crew finally starts bailing.

Sherman guns down crew, then turns back on Pz

Fourth round destroys Pz

Fifth round fired

sixth round fired

seventh round fired

From the Allied side it was not evident that the Pz IV was dead until the very end of the turn, after the Sherman had already pumped 3 more rounds in. I don't know if the disparity was due to the smoke from the shooting, the woods or just an issue of time. Either way- kind of cool that the state of the tank wasn't immediately evident.

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From the Allied side it was not evident that the Pz IV was dead until the very end of the turn, after the Sherman had already pumped 3 more rounds in. I don't know if the disparity was due to the smoke from the shooting, the woods or just an issue of time. Either way- kind of cool that the state of the tank wasn't immediately evident.

I agree, pretty cool. Just what @womble said the Sherman crew did not know the PzIV was toast so kept firing.

I am still not sure that it should take four penetrating hits to destroy a PzIV, especially that close. I'll leave that to BFC to decide.

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