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Are inferior Russian optics modeled?


noxnoctum
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I had a battle recently where two separate trios of early T-34s failed to spot an enemy tank before getting wiped out. Each time only 1 spotted the enemy tank instantly, the other within a few seconds, and the last one not at all (over a period of 30 seconds or so). This was only ~250 meters out with nothing blocking their view. I'll post some screenshots in a bit. The opposing Panther and later PZIV had no issues whatsoever though.

So it makes me wonder, is this from inferior Russian optics or having a crew of 3 being modeled?

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Noxnoctum, hi,

having a crew of 3 being modeled?

That should be the one...

A lot of the stuff about poor Russian optic and such was nonsense. I have read reports from August ’42 in the archives of the Tank Museum in Bovington on a T34/76 and KV I sent over by the Soviets for the UK to take a look at. In both cases the sights, and BTW the gun, are singled out for praise as of particularly high quality.

Equally I have looked through the sights of a T34/85 and IS 2 and both were excellent. Easily good enough.. In fact the small turreted sights on the roof of later war Soviet tanks for general observations a quite exceptional. In poor light they brighten and sharpen up the entire landscape as a high quality telescopic sight does. And they are very easy to use. They are Soviet versions of the Mark 4 sight.

Soviet sights were easily “good enough...” for the ranges at which WWII combat took place.

All interesting stuff,

All the best,

Kip.

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I recently played a quick "test" game pitting T34/76's against PzIV's ( human opponent )

The T34/76 spots like a dog. I think 1 tank saw and fired at an opposing PzIV once, for the loss of approx. 7 T34's. :(

Most of the dead T34's got as far as seeing a "?" before dying, but a couple didn't even manage that.

From other battles, I have to say that the T34/85 seems to spot way better - but it does have a 5 man crew as opposed to the 4 men in the T34/76.

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I only have CMFI+GL but the spotting model should be equal anyway.

What I miss in the posts above is the notion which tank was moving and which one was stationary.

My experience is moving tanks are MUCH MUCH easier to spot.

The best game tactics is to avoid to move while establishing LOS. Waiting for the enemy is one option, but using smoke to move unseen into position is the much better option. Gamey? Who cares if it wins all games? :D

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Funny; there have been a lot of complaints here about how the spotting ability of Russian tanks is too uber...

IME , assuming similar type of vehicle and conditions, the differences between Russian and German spotting AFV spotting capabilities, if any, are fairly subtle.

However, the T-34/76 is definitely subpar in the spotting department and I have always assumed that this has more to do with a the 4-man crew than any issue with the optics per se.

It's also important to be specific about which model of T-34/76 you're dealing with. IIRC, some models of the T-34/76 do not have a commander's cupola, but some do. Cupola (or lack thereof) definitely has a strong effect on spotting when buttoned.

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...Gamey?...

Not at all, good tactics. One of the first things that I check out with my vehicle units and arty is the amount of smoke rounds each one may have. Smoke works great for me for any counter attacks or attacks. Against a human it works great for setting up feints etc...

Now I assume players may consider it "gamey" against the ai, as the ai does not use it the same way that a human might offensively or even defensively. The ai seems to use it more for retreat purposes, like vacating a position from which it has received fire... at least that is how I understand the way it uses it, I may be wrong.

If that is the case, future versions or updates of CM, the ai's use of smoke rounds more aggressively would be a fantastic addition.

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Not at all' date=' good tactics.[/quote'] :)

To move tanks unspotted into hulldown, even the self-defense smoke, which I believe is unlimited, :D, is enough.

I think it can be viewed as gamey with regard to reality, where the smoke would attract lots of attention while for the game's digital soldiers, smoke is tactically nothing.

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Although only anecdotal, from my experience I would say yes the Russians have inferior optics/rifling/veocity in RT. From my experience of duels between Soviet and German tanks at 700m+ I usually find the German tanks to be the first to strike their target. Add to this the slow reload time for some of the Soviet heavies, like the JSII, and the Germans have a definite advantage at range.

I don't think this is unrealistic though. The Germans had some high velocity guns at this point in the war which definitely helped with accuracy. Regarding the quality of their optics, I've read material which suggests the German's had better, and material which says this is not true.

What the Germans did have though is the 'Mili-radian' sight. These use triangles laid over the optics to help gauge ranges. Panzer gunners were taught calculations which, when combined with a knowledge of the size of the target they were firing at (eg T-34), allowed them to work out a rough range of the target before taking a ranging shot. This gave German gunners a higher chance of striking their target with their first shot, or at least zeroing in faster. When combined with the high velocity guns, they had an advantage over Allied and Soviet tanks.

Here's guide I found posted on the net http://www.75thguards.com/ww2online/downloads/Zheriz_Ziess_Sight_Guide.pdf

That aside what I do think needs adjustment is the accuracy of tanks when firing on the move. Judging from a few tests I've done, although the accuracy does seem to decrease when firing on the move, I think they're still too accurate. Sorry no test results to hand :)

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It seems to be variable, which is why the suspect in Noxnoctum's case ( or the T34/76 case ) is the 4 man crew.

My example was taken from an experimental rework of the scenario "The Passage".

1st time I played it as the Russians, it was a massacre - of the Germans. The T34/85 both spotted and hit harder than the PzIV's.

The experiment was to replace the T34/85's with 76's to see if it gave a more even fight. It did not - the 76's were massacred.

Despite my best efforts to get them closer to the Germans before engaging, they were failing to spot first ( and consequently dying ) at 900-1000m.

All were unbuttoned for spotting purposes.

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The T34/76 spots like a dog.

The commander/gunner spots from the cupola (if its a late model) then slides into the gunner's position to reacquire with the gunner's sight. I've had several occasions where LOS from topside did not equal LOS down below so he'd lose his contact. Frustrating but not inaccurate.

German and Russian tanks don't really fire on the move like a Sherman with its gyroscope mount. What you see in game is closer to stop-and-fire abstracted for game purposes. Whenever my tanks are really travelling my chance of hitting anything besides a tall building drops to near nothing.

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What the Germans did have though is the 'Mili-radian' sight. These use triangles laid over the optics to help gauge ranges. Panzer gunners were taught calculations which, when combined with a knowledge of the size of the target they were firing at (eg T-34), allowed them to work out a rough range of the target before taking a ranging shot. This gave German gunners a higher chance of striking their target with their first shot, or at least zeroing in faster. When combined with the high velocity guns, they had an advantage over Allied and Soviet tanks.

Later Soviet sights had the same, e.g. TSh-15 and TSh-16 on T-34/85s.

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I was reading something about German sniper rifles awhile ago. It seems Germans had considerable difficulty producing quality sniper scopes in large numbers to match Russian quality. They could produce either a small number of good scopes or a large number of inferior scopes but nothing inbetween. Remember both sides were producing weapons to equip forces in the millions. The ability to produce a handful of great weapons was insignificant, relatively speaking.

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...do we have to hamstring our Soviet tankers by keeping them buttoned up to replicate real life?

You can if you want to, of course.

When I play Russian, I consider myself something of a "rebel" who is given some leeway by high command as long as I continue to win battles... ;)

So, no, I personally don't keep them buttoned, but this is only a game and the spotting penalty for being buttoned in game may be a bit harsher than irl.

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It's also important to be specific about which model of T-34/76 you're dealing with. IIRC, some models of the T-34/76 do not have a commander's cupola, but some do. Cupola (or lack thereof) definitely has a strong effect on spotting when buttoned.

This.

My own testing suggests that vehicles lacking a cupola are heavily penalized, even in situations where they probably shouldn't be e.g. long range spotting to the front.

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When I play Russian, I consider myself something of a "rebel" who is given some leeway by high command as long as I continue to win battles...

In my case I assume they've given me that leeway in the hopes I'll die painfully in my next ignoble defeat ... :D

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I was reading something about German sniper rifles awhile ago. It seems Germans had considerable difficulty producing quality sniper scopes in large numbers to match Russian quality. They could produce either a small number of good scopes or a large number of inferior scopes but nothing inbetween. Remember both sides were producing weapons to equip forces in the millions. The ability to produce a handful of great weapons was insignificant, relatively speaking.

Soviet sniper scopes are indeed very good quality. The scope on my 91/30 PU sniper looks and functions like it just left the factory yesterday. No blurriness or fogging, and it holds a zero just fine.

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First, let me say that the way those people talk to each other makes the Peng Challenge Thread™ seem like high tea with the Queen. Not only is much of the conversation brutal, but I believe I need Bletchley Park to decode a welter of expressions heretofore unknown to me.

I found the comments far more interesting and useful than the ostensible article. Of particular note was the recommended open fire range for the Nashorn--2 km vs moving targets, but 4 km vs static ones.

If we're going to talk optics, I think it needs to be clearly understood that the T-34/76 and KV-1 sent to Aberdeen were not any old tanks randomly plucked from the production line. In fact, they were cherry picked, with special care and attention devoted to making sure they were right in every particular.

Item 3 is dispositive on the matter.

http://tankarchives.blogspot.com/2014/01/rough-handling-at-aberdeen.html

I discuss this issue and others in my No. 8 below

http://www.battlefront.com/community/showthread.php?t=115385

Aberdeen technical assessment accounts have been cited praising the Russian optics, but against this must be set the handpicked nature of the samples provided. It therefore seems reasonable to posit that none of the issues with even something as basic and vital as the driver's hatch window were allowed in the test articles sent to America.

In researching the topic, I can across this useful discussion (Moon, no game at link) of WW II tank optics. Of particular interest is what's said there on the edge that special lens coatings gave the Germans an optics performance edge, reducing the 4% transmission loss per lens to a much more bearable 2.5% or so. The links at the doc are pretty juicy. Following that is an extended discussion of the gunnery accuracy of various WW II tank and antitank guns. There is a great deal of treadhead groggery, including a harmonization of a Russian 122 mm gun firing table with that of a German--wait for it--88 mm L/71!

http://www.panzer-war.com/page37.html

122 D25 vs 88/L 71

http://www.panzer-war.com/page34.html

This page has a link (near the bottom) to a previously unknown to me post War Yugoslavian comparative shoot among US, German and Russian tank cannon and antitank guns.

http://www.panzer-war.com/page4.html

Returning to Russian optics, the Armchair General appears to have lifted the optics portion from the RKKA site.

http://www.armchairgeneral.com/rkkaww2/weapons/sign_tanks.htm

The link is part of a larger discussion on Missing Lynx in which quotes are provided from German combat accounts. The Germans talk about being taken under fire at 2000 meters, but there's no mention of hits. But when they close the range a bit, things start falling apart, for they're taking killing fire. Three Panthers penetrated frontally at 1500 meters. Even more interesting is a report that Stalin 2s won't close to even 2000 meters, preferring to fight at long range where they are practically immune frontally to German fire. Hasso von Manteuffel says his Tigers (which were Tiger 1s) had to close to 1500 meters to kill the Stalins. It would appear he was talking about IS-1s, quickly pulled from service and discontinued because of major armor issues. Maybe Hasso's men got bad die rolls and wound up fighting the IS-1s with good armor?

http://www.network54.com/Forum/47208/thread/1310697293/Russian+tank+optics

I do find what I've turned up so far to offer some valuable information on effective direct fire combat range for Russian tanks. What the sources have to say about the IS-2s operating in what naval gunnery would term their immunity zones would appear to be of particular interest.

Regards,

John Kettler

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One thing I can't recall anyone mentioning, the SU-85 represents a model that the commander cannot (should not) unbutton from. Its meant to fight totally closed down. It think to open up in the game the commander leaves his hatchless cupola and moves to the far left-rear corner to poke his head out of the loader's rear hatch. Sounds inconvenient to say the least.

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I think there was a problem with Soviet optics (and a lot of other things) in the beginning of the war when factories were relocating.

After that they were up to par as far as I know, and differences in gunnery would rather be due to German tanker training which (under Guderian's supervision) was the gold standard until late in the war.

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