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Why can't a player tow and deploy guns?


tankski
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Well, I belive it's a matter of 1)choices and 2)game scope.

 

1) modelling the 88mm FLAK in travelling conditions requires a lot of work on 3d models of the two wheel carriages, it takes time to code where these two go after the deployment, and these will Always cause problems with pathfinding etc. same goes with any light FLAK gun, which has a dedicated carriage which is separated by the gun in standard operational conditions, and this happens before the actual battle.

 

2) since it takes quite some time to make a 88mm FLAK ready from the transport configuration, and given CM's game scope focused on the tactical reality of a single, precise battle, the 88mm FLAK deployment is assumed to happen before the battle CM games depict. I am not sure of the time required to a trained German unit in 1944 to unload a carried 88mm FLAK, but I assume it takes more than few minutes to make a fighting position ready. 

 

So, you can have 88mm FLAKS, but you can't drive them around.

 

You ca't drive a 88mm PAK as well, because CM is actually missing the vehicles capable of towing that, but you can tow a PAK 40, with a truck.

Your AA assets will cover your troops all over the map.

Edited by Kieme(ITA)
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Well, I belive it's a matter of 1)choices and 2)game scope.

1) modelling the 88mm FLAK in travelling conditions requires a lot of work on 3d models of the two wheel carriages, it takes time to code where these two go after the deployment, and these will Always cause problems with pathfinding etc. same goes with any light FLAK gun, which has a dedicated carriage which is separated by the gun in standard operational conditions, and this happens before the actual battle.

2) since it takes quite some time to make a 88mm FLAK ready from the transport configuration, and given CM's game scope focused on the tactical reality of a single, precise battle, the 88mm FLAK deployment is assumed to happen before the battle CM games depict. I am not sure of the time required to a trained German unit in 1944 to unload a carried 88mm FLAK, but I assume it takes more than few minutes to make a fighting position ready.

So, you can have 88mm FLAKS, but you can't drive them around.

You ca't drive a 88mm PAK as well, because CM is actually missing the vehicles capable of towing that, but you can tow a PAK 40, with a truck.

Your AA assets will cover your troops all over the map.

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Ooops, wrong button.

I quickly checked Wikipedia. They state 2.5min as set up time for the 88. Let that be wrong by 100% and we are talking 5min. A risky maneuver, but still well within a scenario time frame.

I remember to have read, that the 88 was used in North Africa as mobile tank defense. That would support the idea, if true.

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It doesn't take that long.  In the US artillery, we had unit training goals to perform various actions in 2 minutes or less, and that was a test cut off for whether the crew was good enough or had to try it again to get faster.  But the best crews could in fact get some of those operations done in as little as 35 seconds.  We weren't on 88 FLAK of course, but the principles of laying a towed gun don't vary much from piece to piece, and we sometimes laid a 155mm howitzer in under 2 minutes, including the process of registering the gun's position for indirect fire.  Which you wouldn't need for direct fire at a visible target etc.  A more routine time from "march order" (hitched and towing) to "gun ready" was more like 4 minutes, including positioning, setting up the gun, and laying it / registering its position for indirect fire.

Edited by JasonC
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Ok, 4+4 is 8. Plus my 5 is 13min. Still more than considerable in a 30min battle.

In 5mim you cover about 1000m at 15kp/h. Sounds fast and far for a small battle.

I am not saying, that moving big guns is not possible. But I still think the frequency would be insignificant in CM scale. I guess to relocate big guns requires a time frame of Hours. Say, it would make sense to move a battery of 88s, if you knew that you would need them in an hour in a new location.

One other thought: Germans and Russian during Bagration were probably not like well trained, well fed and rested US Army guys.

And while we talk anecdotes: in my "final basic training" test in the Bundeswehr, it took me more than 5min to make a 20mm AA ready. Then the trainers stopped the exercise and concluded, that I "principally know" how to do it.

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One other thought: Germans and Russian during Bagration were probably not like well trained, well fed and rested US Army guys.

 

Err... I shall just say that this train of thought is misguided :) anyway I believe the reason is simply a matter of time it'd take to code and animate. In CMx1 you could tow and also push AA guns about except for the heavy 85-90mm guns due to weight, and even those you could tow if you had prime movers capable of pulling them. But it was crude. My suspicion is that moveable AA guns will creep into the game at some point - CMBN didn't originally have any AA guns, then some were added for a ground role only, then they got the AA capability.

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What do think are big differences about it?

You wheel the gun into the desired position. You drop its trails - two rails out the back for the 155, hinged arms to the sides for the 88. The 88 should first be lowered on its jacks, about the only difference there. Then the ends of the trails are hammered into the ground to provide extra stability. The gun is taken out of travel lock - lowering a brace that attaches to the tube ahead of the mount while towing, to avoid bumps bending the barrel due to whip. You are ready to traverse the gun to a desired deflection. If you need an indirect fire position reference, that adds another step - aiming posts or a surveyor's tool set out some distance from the gun, and azimuths measured to those points and to a battery reference (FDC aiming post or his surveyor's tool). The battery then plots the intersect point of those lines and the gun is laid.

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What do think are big differences about it?

...The 88 should first be lowered on its jacks, about the only difference there...

Maybe that's not a biggie, but it seems like it could well be. Once it's down you have to get rid of the bogies, the rear one at least, or it'll get in the way of serving the gun. While I'm sure that can all be done in a hurry on a flat field, how steep an incline does it have to be before the hand-cranked winches and lift chains are out of true enough to make it hard?

Even so, I'm sure they'd be handleable in the game if only they didn't require such complicated animations to be done even nearly right.

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Err... I shall just say that this train of thought is misguided :)

 

Is it? A few years ago, a moaning went through German magazines, recognizing quite embarrassed that Bundeswehr folks in Afghanistan were just not as physically fit as the US guys. ;-)

 

But you are probably right, to say that "unmovable" guns in CM are more a technical issue. Though I do not miss them much. Even in CM x1 I rarely moved my small AAs.

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This is kinda gamey.. It would be nice to take towed AA guns into combat and then deploy them against tanks or infantry.  It seems that well trained gun crews could do the work in 5-10 min, depending on quality.  That said, it somewhat neuters the Soviet side with the inability to bring these guns into the theater map..

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  • 2 weeks later...

Ooops, wrong button.

I quickly checked Wikipedia. They state 2.5min as set up time for the 88. Let that be wrong by 100% and we are talking 5min. A risky maneuver, but still well within a scenario time frame.

I remember to have read, that the 88 was used in North Africa as mobile tank defense. That would support the idea, if true.

The 88 was used in North Africa successfully when the commonwealth tank forces operated independently (bugger all co-ord with infantry and artillery) and possessed no HE rounds for the 2/6pdr guns. By design and doctrine British tanks were to neutralise anti tank guns and infantry with besa machine guns. The reason why the US 75mm in the M3's and M4's was so loved by commonwealth tankers was the ability to neutralise 8,8 and 5cm guns at all engagement ranges with actual high explosive rounds. As opposed to manfully/ineffectually trying to drive up and machine gun gun crews. Another problem was that the gun shields of PaK's and FlaK's were designed to be proof vs 7,92mm cartridges, like the besa. So under that very specific theater, doctrine, equipment context a 2.5 min setup time actually works.

 

Unit histories of Luftwaffe specialised anti tank Flak units during Normandy show utterly ineffectual trades vs Allied tanks with HE guns and competent artillary. 

 

German attempts to stem rampaging T34's and KV1 prior to Moscow in 41 also tend to also result in the elimination of entire FlaK, 10,5cm and 10cm gun batteries because the Russian believed in having HE shells in "large calibers" in their tanks like everyone else except the Royal Armoured corp.

 

Things that happened in afrika do not necessarily happen else where, also things that happen in 42 afrika are not necessarily true at the end of 42 or 43.

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And the fact that Russia was a lot bigger than France, so defensive positions were super vulnerable to tank attacks because they were often no more than a thin line of infantry positions. I'm pretty sure artillery guns like the leFH 18 stopped more T34 hordes than 88s did. 

 

In a pinch the FlaK 36 could fire from its wheeled mount without deployment. Such firing was extremely bad for the carriage though. 

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Never heard that before. But I have read dozens of times that the gun could only be fired through a very narrow arc when it was up on wheels. Could that be the reason?

Michael

No, that is just physics. Or better "static", to be precise. Limbered, the 88 is only stable in the direction of the main beam. If you try to fire perpendicular to this line, you need stabilizers to avoid tipping. That's why they have those foldable beams on the sides.

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It doesn't take that long.  In the US artillery, we had unit training goals to perform various actions in 2 minutes or less, and that was a test cut off for whether the crew was good enough or had to try it again to get faster.  But the best crews could in fact get some of those operations done in as little as 35 seconds.  We weren't on 88 FLAK of course, but the principles of laying a towed gun don't vary much from piece to piece, and we sometimes laid a 155mm howitzer in under 2 minutes, including the process of registering the gun's position for indirect fire.  Which you wouldn't need for direct fire at a visible target etc.  A more routine time from "march order" (hitched and towing) to "gun ready" was more like 4 minutes, including positioning, setting up the gun, and laying it / registering its position for indirect fire.

 

I think it's fair to say that the time/realism-factor is not the real issue, it's that BF is cutting corners on tough code that would only rarely be used, sometimes to the detriment of tactical fidelity. Whether it's reasonable or not is up for the individual to decide.

 

Like hand-to-hand combat and deformable terrain, consigned to the too-hard basket.

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So, you can have 88mm FLAKS, but you can't drive them around.

 

You ca't drive a 88mm PAK as well, because CM is actually missing the vehicles capable of towing that, but you can tow a PAK 40, with a truck.

Your AA assets will cover your troops all over the map.

Does that mean there is no mobile version of the 88 Flak available for the German player?

In no series (Normandy, Italy, RT)?

Edited by Skinfaxi
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