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Allies - CMBN Buying The Farm - Crowd-sourced DAR


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This is the thread for my half of the experiment with @Method Gamer. The plan is to have me on the attack against him defending in the scenario Buying the Farm.  The goal is for this to be a good intr

I tried to use a mortar in a similar way against the AI, from a similar place. In my case, the target was an enemy 81mm mortar crew, in one of the foxholes over to the east, in front of the barn , nex

Initial situation My orders are simple – capture the farm. To accomplish that task, I have a company of infantry supported by a platoon of four Stuart light tanks and a platoon of Engineers. Also ava

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^^^

Soft factors really matter. This thread prompted me to play through it. It's been so long, I'd forgotten it. My US infantry was a bit brittle, but then, they did find almost all the mines. Sigh. 

 

Green is not as good as Veteran. Etc.

 

That matters for picking who gets what job. (If you have the luxury of being able to allocate missions that way. It comes down to forces available and time.)

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Also played through the mission. Got through it with about 20 KIA without using my mortars. My tanks were invaluable. I almost felt overpowered because the AI put most of its infantry and none of its big guns on the A3 crest.. Half of my KIA's were some stalwart "volunteers" that scouted out the minefield for me :D

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I too have just completed the scenario (AI stacked IG and ATG on the north side with some trenches, and salted some mines in as well; one platoon in the field, one in the farm) and didn't find the troops were required to take a beating, until I ran into mines... Keeping them in at least some form of C2 might've helped the odd team that took a casualty shrug it off for the most part to start with. Almost all my casualties were suffered by the one platoon, and by the time we were fighting for the barns, enough mines had been stepped on to reduce them to Nervous, but they weren't badly fazed by the first few fallen.

 

Edit: I tended to go easy on my engineers, even though they were the most experienced troops: they also carried essential equipment, that I'd rather not have to waste time scrambling around to Buddy Aid off the body of a stricken comrade. The only Regular troops given a "special" assignment were the XO team, who got given a zook (per SOP) and never fired it, or indeed any shots at all, AFAIK.

 

The AI used a setup very different from the default offered to the player. Nice variation. But if I'd gone the way Ian's going, it would have been over sooner I think because it was very heavily weighted to the north. Maybe there were a lot of mines in the south field, but I hit quite a few, even being careful not to directly assault onto the front of prepared defenses (a lesson learned in the MG campaign) and refusing to use any gap I hadn't seen the enemy use.

 

I noticed one (more) thing about the map itself. The AI has put an MG42 team on the top floor of the farmhouse proper, and that seemed to have a wider field of view than you'd expect. At one point, a team in the wheatfield (near the north edge, but about half way across) got a full Spot on that team even though the camera said the whole floor was occluded from their position by the roof of one of the barns. Couldn't get a return bead, however, even though they were suppressed by fire that could only have come from that location.

Edited by womble
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Minute 30-29:

Well none of my men spotted any sign of the enemy. Here is a view of the lead scouts in the forest. As you can see they still have quite a lot of forest to get through before they can see very far.

 

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Figure 23 Scouts in the forest

I was just about to say we had no contact with enemy until the final 5s of the turn. That’s when a member of my scout team on the right side of the road became the first casualty. That is an inconvenient pace for a mine!

 

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Figure 24 First casualty


Minute 29: Orders

Nothing special with the orders: I keep scouting forward on the left side of the road and moved the rest of the scout’s squad up. I’ll bring up a team of engineers to mark those mines and continue moving forward in the forest.

 

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Figure 25 Continue Scouting left
 

 

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Figure 26 Bring up an engineering team

One thing you do whenever you have squads doing bounding over watch movement is check and adjust their way points and pauses after each turn. Small discrepancies creep in overtime and it pays to check on them and adjust pauses and movement orders as you add more to cover the desired ground.

 

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Figure 27 Adjust movement orders

 

 

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One thing you do whenever you have squads doing bounding over watch movement is check and adjust their way points and pauses after each turn. Small discrepancies creep in overtime and it pays to check on them and adjust pauses and movement orders as you add more to cover the desired ground.

 

That's some excellent advice. Bounding over watch is one the most important "micro" skills to have, and one of the hardest to intuitively grasp. It would be nice to have some general guidelines on it, like how long a team of X size takes to cross a number of action squares and get settled.

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c3k,

 

I think if you're going to make dire tactical predictions, then you should just say so, as opposed to veiled language. Evidence? Your #30

 

http://community.battlefront.com/topic/119230-allies-cmbn-buying-the-farm-crowd-sourced-dar/page-2

 

"Count the obstacles between you and it via each rout."

 

Clearly, this isn't neutral language, is it? Who knows what other havoc a simple typo may generate? I sure generate some doozies that way on my end!

 

IanL,

 

You are greatly expanding my in-game skill set with your discussion of proper bounding techniques. I'm long familiar with pauses, but historically have used them more for vehicular deconfliction than for infantry maneuver. Nor had I ever thought about eyeballing my approaches from the other side's second story windows and such. Frankly, I find this whole notion of being able to see the other side of the battlefield, to any level of detail better than a 1:50,000 tactical map and maybe an isolated very small area still (think Spitfire photo recon very low oblique of the Wurzburg radar at Bruneval, France), to be rather gamey and a real blow to CM as a sim. I've read, for example, the FMs from WW II and Vietnam, and the closest you'll find to peering out the enemy's windows at your own approach route is a very simple analysis of terrain masking from key elevations in order, for example, to identify blind spots in one's small arms defensive fire plan and such. There is no cruising about hostile ground at eye level, and that sort of detail simply wasn't to be had then. I wish we had the game with topo overlays and a way to limit how closely we could scrutinize the enemy view of things. We players already have vastly greater knowledge, control and ability to act and respond than our forebears did, and to me, the procedures described in this DAR only worsen the situation. If I had my way, we wouldn't be able to precompute LOS a priori from a planned waypoint, which is patently ridiculous in my view, and we couldn't move our ears about the battlefield to home in on an unsighted enemy while in an audio environment in which echoes, reverberation, sound ducting, absorption, destructive interference and other factors aren't modeled, conditions which can greatly degrade, if not kill outright, the ability to detect, classify, ID and localize sounds. Even absent Borg spotting, we know and can know way too much. On balance, I think we need far more Clausewitzian friction, not less, in CM than we now have. Sandpaper, not Teflon™. I'd very much like ground level LOS and ears period to be limited to the forwardmost unit a player has. Now, I have to think about this issue in terms of ground rules for PBEM. Since I know of no way to do this via settings, I think it'll come down to choosing one's PBEM foes wisely.

 

Regards,

 

John Kettler

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Frankly, I find this whole notion of being able to see the other side of the battlefield, to any level of detail better than a 1:50,000 tactical map and maybe an isolated very small area still (think Spitfire photo recon very low oblique of the Wurzburg radar at Bruneval, France), to be rather gamey and a real blow to CM as a sim....If I had my way, we wouldn't be able to precompute LOS a priori from a planned waypoint, which is patently ridiculous in my view...

John, you're asking to tie your squad leaders' hands. Consider this: the TacAI cannot choose a position based on it having LOS to a target. The consequence of this is that you have to select the position where the adequately-trained, competent SL decides his squad can bring fire to bear on a relevant point or spotted target. In WeGo mode, that requires being able to plot LOS "in advance". If Lieutenant Rupert says "go over to that hedgerow and put suppressive fire into the corners of the field the other side of it, Sergeant Rock has to be able to do that. Would it be a better sim if you had to wait for (the remainder of) a minute after they arrived in place before they started laying down fire? I put it to you that it would not: the number of situations that "should" be possible and would be rendered unsimulable would overmatch any increase in verisimilitude. Simple bounding overwatch with suppressive fire, as Ian has so recently enlightened you to, would be impossible when first entering a field (because you couldn't set up an initial Target Area). As and when the TacAI gets to be good enough to find a position in a hedgerow that can reach the opposite side of the field, and sensibly apply suppression, "your way" might be superior, but even then, it would be moving the frame of the game up a level (at least).

 

Being able to squint from the enemy's side of the field is just a way of refining "What would I, the SL, see when I get to position p?" in the face of non-real-life visual resolution and cameras that cannot be placed at infantry eye level (a limitation of technology which being able to trace LOS from future points also helps partially to overcome). Sure, being able to move directly to the few places in an undulating terrain that give you LOS where you want it undoubtedly increases the tempo of battle, compared with having to find that place with a little trial and error, but that's part and parcel of it being a sim as opposed to real life. The biggest tempo-increaser is the God's Eye View of the player, and that's not going away while the game remains in the same idiom.

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Movement paths IanL shows going to the minefield: It looks like two teams have QUICK orders to enter the road, then SLOW to enter the minefield. That's gonna hurt.

 

Your engineer team has MARK MINES command already usable (or so it looks in the screenshot). I'd stop anyone from entering the minefield. Get that engineer up there, pronto, and have them MARK MINES. Once that's done, then other units can HUNT (tight covered arc) or MOVE through the marked mines.

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Movement paths IanL shows going to the minefield: It looks like two teams have QUICK orders to enter the road, then SLOW to enter the minefield. That's gonna hurt.

 

In general what Ken said is the right thing to do.  However my decision is based on my assessment of the mine field and I am taking what I have determined is a small risk.  The scouts on the left hand side of the road actually got further along the road than the guys that stepped on a mine.   This leads me to believe that the mine field does not reach across the entire road.  So the guys on the left side of the road are following the scouts that already passed there unharmed and I am carefully hugging the bocage and moving slowly over the are that might be a concern.  No one is quick moving where I suspect mines.

 

While it is true there is a chance that the left hand side scout team just got lucky that is why only one additional team is going to follow in their foot steps.  If those guys make it then I'll be pretty sure there is a safe path there.  I am pushing it because I want to see down the road and time is short.  I had not expected to encounter mines so bloody early so if there are more I want to find them sooner rather than later.

 

Image repeated for ease of reference.

 

Looking at the picture again I think the engineers are headed into trouble.  Oops with some luck they will not get that far next turn and I can pull them back.

 

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Figure 25 Continue Scouting left

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Your engineer team has MARK MINES command already usable (or so it looks in the screenshot). I'd stop anyone from entering the minefield. Get that engineer up there, pronto, and have them MARK MINES. Once that's done, then other units can HUNT (tight covered arc) or MOVE through the marked mines.

Interesting I did not notice that.  I thought the mark mines command was only available once the engineers spotted the mines.  I already played my next turn so I'll have to investigate later.

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Ian, can I ask why you didn't have a team ready to snuggle into that first kink in the right hand hedge, on the right hand side of the hedge? It's in the deployment zone, or very nearly so, and well hidden in the woods. In my run through vs the AI, I put a 60mm there and pasted the kink past the gap a bit to cover my movement across the road. Don't think I hit anything, but it's such a key location, I couldn't leave it unmolested... :)

 

I can't be sure, but I think Mark Mines becomes available at waypoints adjcent to mines that have been spotted no matter who it was that spotted 'em.

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womble,

 

Those are very good points, and in thinking about it, it occurs to me there's a dynamic aspect which must be considered in terms of a turn based artifact. If I'm SL, I can, for the sake of argument, see the ground ahead of me, and as I move, I keep seeing that ground and adjust what I do based on that. This action is continuous, whereas the game treats the start and finish as being discrete, with the only action in between being driven by the specific orders given, troop state and enemy action. Guess I'm going to have to learn a new way of moving my men forward.

 

IanL,

 

I wonder when we're finally going to get "S" mines? We've got no less than three WW II CMx2 games and none in any. "S" mines were a terror, yet in the game we blithely take a single mine casualty and call in the engineers. In practice, one of those things which popped up and burst in the air would routinely inflict multiple casualties and completely paralyze movement. I know of one case, reported in Penalty Strike Alexander V. Pyl'cynin which a single mine planted on the road verge wiped out ("every man dead") an entire Russian platoon route marching in close order as part of the Penal Company. I understand that not all German AP mines were "S" mines, but it was the iconic German AP mine. There were, of course, the shoe mine and glass mine, but those were designed to be cheap and hard to sweep. But the standard German AP mine of the war was the "S" mine, whether laid as a pure AP configuration or as protection for an AT mine field. 

 

Regards,

 

John Kettler

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Ian, can I ask why you didn't have a team ready to snuggle into that first kink in the right hand hedge, on the right hand side of the hedge? It's in the deployment zone, or very nearly so, and well hidden in the woods. In my run through vs the AI, I put a 60mm there and pasted the kink past the gap a bit to cover my movement across the road. Don't think I hit anything, but it's such a key location, I couldn't leave it unmolested... :)

Eewwww good point - that is an I suck moment.  You are totally correct I could have easily done that and would have benefited greatly.  I'll have to look at that again.  Note: I have played two more turns now - posts soon.

 

I can't be sure, but I think Mark Mines becomes available at waypoints adjcent to mines that have been spotted no matter who it was that spotted 'em.

After checking the turn I believe you are correct. In fact the mines were known by every unit even those that could not have possibly seen it. So, there ya go borg sporting for mines.

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Movement paths IanL shows going to the minefield: It looks like two teams have QUICK orders to enter the road, then SLOW to enter the minefield. That's gonna hurt.

 

Your engineer team has MARK MINES command already usable (or so it looks in the screenshot). I'd stop anyone from entering the minefield. Get that engineer up there, pronto, and have them MARK MINES. Once that's done, then other units can HUNT (tight covered arc) or MOVE through the marked mines.

 

Turns out while I missed that the mark mines command was enabled I was concerned that the engineers would just start into the mine field so I had a long pause on their penultimate way point so that they would not enter the mine field until I had a chance to review things.  So they have now been instructed to mark the mines.

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Eewwww good point - that is an I suck moment.  You are totally correct I could have easily done that and would have benefited greatly.  I'll have to look at that again.  Note: I have played two more turns now - posts soon.

You might even be able to make use of that OP while you're waiting for the engineers to mark those mines :) If you're not already beyond that stage.

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Minute 29-28:
 

Not much happened. The scout team got past the mines and a following team moved up to be positioned to do the same next turn. In the woods no contacts were made and the platoon moved forward.

 

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Figure 28 View down the road


Minute 28: Orders

 

After looking at what the MG could see from its original location I realized that the MG could probably protect the majority of the road’s left bocage row if I just moved the team a small amount. So the MG team and the ammo bearers move over. Notice the target tool (drawn from the original location instead of the selected way point) shows clear LOS to the bocage lining the road.

 

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Figure 29 Repositioning MG

 

 

Since the scout team got pass the mines fine I split the follow on squad and each team will follow the pattern that worked for the scout team.

 

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Figure 30 Skirting the mines

Continue the advance in the woods now moving the tanks up behind the infantry. And I also noticed that my tanks were all buttoned up. I forgot to change this – now I have all tanks are to unbutton.

 

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Figure 31 Moving up in the woods
 

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Minute 28-27:

Pretty uneventful turn: The engineers reached the mine field, the injured scout has been looked after and evacuated. The platoon in the woods has moved forward.

 

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Figure 32 Engineers reach the mine field

Just as the turn ends my men in the woods spot an enemy solider through the trees.

 

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Figure 33 Deep in the woods

He is tucked away in the bocage along the road past the jog in the road.

 

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Figure 34 The lone enemy solider that has been spotted

Here is an uncluttered view of who can see him.

 

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Figure 35 An uncluttered view

Minute 27: Orders

 

Orders are very much more of the same. Move forward in the woods and along the road (but carefully there).
 

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Figure 36 Moving forward in the woods

Thankfully my engineers did not move into the mine field so I changed their orders to mark mines.

 

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Figure 37 Marking mines

 

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Just as the turn ends my men in the woods spot an enemy solider through the trees.

 

He is tucked away in the bocage along the road past the jog in the road.

 

Here is an uncluttered view of who can see him.

I was struggling at first to identify what had been seen; them's some good eyes you've got there: not only through the trees, but through bocage as well. There's a dip at the front edge of the forest, down to the low bocage there, but I'm looking forward now to seing whether MG has achieved a reciprocal spot; it strikes me that he probably should, since you're moving, and not hiding behind Bocage.

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A couple quick comments Ian, when I attack I like to be "seen" everywhere across the front to mislead the enemy as to where I will be focusing my combat power.  You seem to have almost everything concentrated on your right.. what if he is setup on that side of the map and your advance stalls?  Any contingency plans in that circumstance?  Also if your opponent identifies all that movement on your right then it would be a simple matter for him to shift units to meet them... those tanks especially will probably be heard early and he will know that a heavy formation is coming through the woods.  

 

Also I will rarely commit everything so early in an action as you seem to be doing.  Okay so you are conducting a movement to contact on the right, which is fine, but it would be good to know approximately where the enemy is before committing everything to a course of action... if events prove that the left, or indeed the center are weakly held then you will be hard pressed to adjust laterally in order to take advantage of that.

 

Of course I am not familiar with this scenario and don't know the time constraints you are under, etc.

 

Additionally, from your image showing your infantry moving through the woods.. looks like you are conducting a traveling overwatch movement rather than bounding overwatch.. which makes sense in that terrain... moving fast like you are doing at the beginning of that movement through the woods is going to make a lot of noise by the way... I would Hunt all the way through them to maintain a little better noise discipline.

 

re: how long to pause units, I can only speak to how I play and that is to make sure I ALWAYS have one unit stationary while another advances (operating in sections of two or three teams), especially in close terrain.. this is so they can spot and listen for enemy activity, always ensure your units can support each other by fire so any enemy fire can be quickly suppressed.

 

This is a great learning tool, and its interesting to read everybody's advice and to see how different people approach the same situation.

Edited by Bil Hardenberger
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Yep breach the hedge rows and join the woods advance. With thousands hedge hogs up there breaching is in my father one way or another.

 

Your poor father! ;)

 

So, you need an engineer team just behind the advance, ready to breach to the right.  How have you maneuvered your units to do so? I don't see a spare breacher ready to move. (Mine guys will be taken up with that task for several minutes. That can be a long time to be pinned down in a road.) Do you have any SMOKE capable teams up near the front? If you got shot at in the kill-sack which is road, my plan would be to drop, return fire, throw smoke, blow a hole, and pull out. (That's my drill, both in battle and on dates. Just sayin'... ;)  )

Edited by c3k
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