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Apologies if this has been done to death a long time ago but is there any way one of my tanks can just chuck a couple of HE rounds when I want a bit of area fire into a suspected enemy location?

 

To clarify, I've got "Target Light" which just fires the MGs (useful for suppression) and "Target" which unleashes HE for a whole minute and (in the case of Shermans) gets rid of about a quarter of the entire load out of HE shells. Is there any way I can get them to just fire for half a minute (or less)? I only really want a shell or two on target.

 

Thinking out loud as I'm typing this, can the "Pause" order help? So if I pause for 30 seconds it just fires for the second half of the minute? Not ideal but it'd improve the situation. Or does "Pause" only work for movement orders?

 

Like I say, I ought to know this but I've been away from CM for a while.

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To expand on target briefly from Pak40 ... as with Pause, which you can increment in 5 second steps by repeated pressing of the P key, you can now do the same with Target Briefly (J key by default), in steps of 15 seconds; so for you purpose you could set either 15 or 30 seconds?

 

You can also use a combination of movement, pause, and fire orders ... set a waypoint a short distance forward which has LOS to the area you want to fire at, issue a (say) 30 second pause order and a target order from that waypoint, then issue a reverse order (usually best!) to move back out of LOS of the target area ... the tank rolls forward, fires for the duration of the pause order from the waypoint, then reverses out of the fire location. (Make sure it doesn't turn around to move!) Or some combination of the above as suits the circumstances you have.

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An alternative or adjunct to Target Briefly is, indeed, using the Pause feature. Pausing while firing (briefly), then putting a short, possibly Fast, movement leg in, with a Target Light or Target (Armour) Arc order on the waypoint lets you do things like have the tank lob a couple of shells at a building (say), then switch to either hosing down that same building with its MGs or maybe going to anti-armour overwatch.

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Expanding on the movement technique: the unit will CONTINUE its last combat order to the next waypoint UNLESS you change it.

 

So...

 

Move tank to firing position, Pause for, say, 20 seconds while Targeting the enemy. Add a Reverse command and at that waypoint give the tank a Face or Covered Arc. The new combat command (Face or Covered Arc) will cancel the Target command.

 

The movement waypoints can be very short. The importance is the delay and then the non-shooting target command.

 

Play with it...

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Expanding on the movement technique: the unit will CONTINUE its last combat order to the next waypoint UNLESS you change it.

 

So...

 

Move tank to firing position, Pause for, say, 20 seconds while Targeting the enemy. Add a Reverse command and at that waypoint give the tank a Face or Covered Arc. The new combat command (Face or Covered Arc) will cancel the Target command.

 

The movement waypoints can be very short. The importance is the delay and then the non-shooting target command.

 

Play with it...

While that's true, it's not really very often necessary now that we have Target Briefly. If all you want to do is "stop firing on the specified target" after a period of time, the Target Briefly is adequate to the task. Of course, if you're pre-Target Briefly in engine version, then "Pause-move-replacetarget" is the only way.

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I'm a bit confused by this pause command based on the suggestions above. Does pause only affect movement then? I've seen mentioned above that units will shoot while paused, which seemed to me to contradict what that manual says, but I'm still learning so I assume I'm missing something about the function.

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I'm a bit confused by this pause command based on the suggestions above. Does pause only affect movement then? I've seen mentioned above that units will shoot while paused, which seemed to me to contradict what that manual says, but I'm still learning so I assume I'm missing something about the function.

Yes, Pause only affects movement. It won't "pause" a unit's firing. Pausing to fire is a major use of the function, especially now the progrmming oversight of having Paused vehicles receive penalties as if they were moving... Otherwise all "popup" attacks would have to happen in the dying few seconds of a turn, so you could end a unit's movement path at "up on the firing step" and order them back down into defilade during the orders phase... A Paused unit behaves in many ways as if it has no further waypoints, for the duration of that pause. The only exception I can think of is that its passengers cannot dismount, but there may be others.

 

A couple of ways Pause can be used:

 

During infantry advances, having the element Quick or Fast a movement leg a couple of Action Spots long, then attach a Pause to the waypoint of 10s or so, with a target order, if you know where you want them to shoot, followed by another 2-AS movement leg at good speed lets a unit "advance by bounds". If you have two elements, give one a 10s pause at their initial position, and you can have them leapfrog each other to advance in bounding overwatch or caterpillar overwatch.

 

An AFV in defilade can pop up (preferably to Hull Down relative to the expected enemy positions) to a waypoint that has a Pause attached, long enought to acquire a target, fire one or two shots and then reverse back down the slope or back behind the building.

 

An AFV can advance, pause to fire on a target, then advance again.

 

It's worth noting that any leg that's "Hunt" mode, where the unit stops because it's spotted something or come under fire will cancel all subsequent movement legs, so it's not possible to "Hunt" up to a crest, using Hunt's "reactive ability" to stop just in sight, and back away having fired on a spotted target, since the act of Hunt stopping the movement will cancel the reverse-once-fired portion of the order sequence.

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Ah, I don't seem to have the J or "Target Briefly" option. I'm patched to 1.11 but I assume I need version 2.0 ot better?

At which point you are going to be in need of the "Pause for firing, then move a tiny distance and give a different Target order" method that was how it was done, back in the dark old days :)
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