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Allies - CMBN Buying The Farm - Crowd-sourced DAR


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Bil, if you're interested, the scenario is a base BN scenario called "Buying the Farm". G'wan, load it up and share your wisdom! :) It is only 30 minutes long. I fear that if an axis becomes stalled, there will not be time to shift to another axis and try that approach.

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Well more great advice, I'm learning plenty here. Thanks guys.

Bil, good point about being seen everywhere. I had not though of that. You are right I should have planned to make some noise every where. I had not thought about the different in noise level between quick and hunt. I mean I knew if would be different but I did not consider it. And I was planning to move up the road at roughly the same speed as through the forest but the mines messed that up. It is actually interesting to see the contacts he sees. It is not often that you get to see what you'd moves look like to the opposition.

Ken, yeah further not father doh! You are right I should have begun moving another team or two of engineers as soon as I saw the hedge hogs. And smoke yeah I will likely need that. I usually forget about infantry based smoke. I will check who's got if and who doesn't.

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Minute 27-26:

 

Things started happening this turn. Suddenly the scouts and their backups in the woods got contact after contact. Fire was exchanged. Casualties were taken. Men were shaken. A little over half way through the turn the scouts in the left side of the woods spotted an AT Gun. OK it could be an IG gun they are not sure so I’m just going to call it an AT Gun for now.

 

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Figure 38 Scouts spot an AT Gun

Here is a better look at where the Gun is: right at the bend in the road covering the woods.

 

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Figure 39 The AT Gun icon's location

The remainder of 3rd squad spots enemy soldiers in some trench works across the open ground near the farm.

 

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Figure 40 3rd Squad spots trenches

Here is now the contacts look at the end of the turn. Some of the solid contacts have turned to ‘?’ because my men shot at them and they shot back. Between all the ducking going on solid contacts were lost.
 

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Figure 41 Spotting at turn end

Let’s look at some of the details of the turn. At the beginning of the turn 3rd Squad fired on their contact from the previous turn. They quickly lost sight of the enemy who ducked behind the bocage.
 

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Figure 42 Turn starts with firing on enemy spotted last time

Soon however 3rd Squad had other things to worry about – new enemy contacts. The exchanged fire between them.
 

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Figure 43 Soon they are taking incoming fire

Meanwhile on the other side of the woods not far away 1st squad ran into much closer enemy contacts. The scouts encountered them first and quick ducked down but not before taking a casualty. The rest of 1st squad returned fire and hit one enemy solider.
 

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Figure 44 Right side of woods more contacts

As the small arm exchange was going on something much bigger entered the fray. No casualties were caused by this but it did leave the lone remaining scout shaken.

 

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Figure 45 Scouts take casualty and backup inflicts one

 

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Tanks: I just remembered that you mentioned that you were planning to unbutton them. I wouldn't. The spotting advantage to being unbuttoned is huge, but in a close range fight like this you're just asking to have your tank crews take casualties and morale hits.

 

The gun: since you spotted something, it looks like a prime target for some mortars. 

 

Squads: the units behind your scouts seem too bunched up. The US squads should be able to split into 3 teams. If 1 team is a scout, the remaining men should be split into two different teams, especially in terrain like this. One grenade would cause too many casualties.

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Minute 26: Orders
Contact has been made. The orders reflect this. The scouts back up squads are split and spread out for protection and to shoot back.
 
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Figure 46 Spread out

The HE left the scouts pinned although they recovered from being shaken.

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Figure 47 Pinned

3rd squad spreads out to deal with the contacts in the trench works.

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Figure 48 More spreading out

Two company mortars move up to fire on the AT gun.

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Figure 49 Bring up the mortar

Here is what the fire order looks like. Whenever you are targeting something behind a bocage row with a mortar you can usually find a place to land shells behind the bocage. This time it is right on top of the AT Gun’s suspected location.


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Figure 50 Target behind the bocage where the gun is

I am going to try @MOS:96B2P’s tip about using a covered arc on your HQ to help guide how much your men spread out (http://community.battlefront.com/topic/119361-what-are-your-favorite-cm-tips-and-tricks/?p=1604371). As you can see 1 platoon looks pretty good and a quick check confirms that everyone is under command and happy, happyish anyway.

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Figure 51 1st Platoon area

@C3K pointed out that if I am going to be breaching to get off the road I need my engineers closer to the action. I started bringing them forward including getting one team into the jeep.

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Figure 52 Bring engineers forward

Also the members of 2nd platoon are getting a fair way down the road now and they might need some fire support. I am moving one of their tanks up to just behind the minefield so it can see down the road.

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Figure 53 Position tank to cover the road

Here is a composite image of 2nd platoon’s lead members as they head up the road.

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Figure 54 Moving up the road
 

Here is 2nd platoon HQ with its area of operation’s cover arc. Notice how some of his men are outside that. It turns out they are out of command. Oops get that HQ moving up and past the minefield.

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Figure 55 2nd Platoon's area

 

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This is really shaping up! I'm learning a thing or two from your playstyle. I generally don't have enough patience on attacks.

 

Good glad to hear it.  Yeah patience is important.  There have been times when I did things right as I approached each possible contact location and each time there was no one there.  Inevitably the time I loose patience and just get going is the time I make contact and get ambushed.  I remind my self of those early battles to make sure I do not do that any more.

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Minute 26: Orders

Two company mortars move up to fire on the AT gun.

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Figure 49 Bring up the mortar

Whenever you are targeting something behind a bocage row with a mortar you can usually find a place to land shells behind the bocage. This time it is right on top of the AT Gun’s suspected location.  

 

I have always struggled when attempting to use mortars in the direct fire role.  As a result I mostly use them in the indirect role with a spotter.  If I understand the above screenshot correctly you Quick the mortars through the woods and at the last waypoint gave them a Target command. Now with my luck the mortars would have trouble firing due to the woods the mortar team is still in.  But those tree trunks look kind of lined up ... maybe the woods are more of an orchard?  (I played this scenario but it was over two years ago and I don't remember all the details)  So anyways I would be interested to hear any tips on using mortars in the direct fire role and also to see how Ian uses them in this situation.         

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Yes, do not forget the deploy command otherwise your mortar crew will just bang away with their rifles looking kinda goofy.

It might be hard to see in the screenshot but there is a small clearing right in front of them so they should be ok firing. I would not have done it in the middle of woods. So they should set up at at the edge of the clearing and fire away.

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I have always struggled when attempting to use mortars in the direct fire role.  As a result I mostly use them in the indirect role with a spotter.  If I understand the above screenshot correctly you Quick the mortars through the woods and at the last waypoint gave them a Target command. Now with my luck the mortars would have trouble firing due to the woods the mortar team is still in.  But those tree trunks look kind of lined up ... maybe the woods are more of an orchard?  (I played this scenario but it was over two years ago and I don't remember all the details)  So anyways I would be interested to hear any tips on using mortars in the direct fire role and also to see how Ian uses them in this situation.         

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 , next to the hedge. It didn't end well. The target spotted my working mortar crew quickly (possibly because at this close range, they started banging away with their small arms as well), and won the duel. I believe the east edge of the wood has a small dip down towards the Low Bocage there, and that firing position may be exposed.

 

In general, I'd rather have more concealment if I'm going to engage in direct lay. I'd use (my) standard approach of crawling the last AS from unsighted to sighted, give them a short circular Target Arc at the start of the Slow leg, and another short, wedge-shaped TA facing through the (preferably Bocage) cover, plus a Deploy order at the terminal waypoint. Next order phase I'd start with the Target or Target Light command. Mostly I'd use Target Light, but on a scenario this short, might as well go all-out and shoot at maximum RoF. Of course your first two or three shots will be one-a-minute for ranging purposes, whichever RoF you choose.

 

I don't think the trees are supposed to represent an orchard. They are pretty regular, but that could just be an artefact of time spent in laying them out. We'll see, I guess, whether the regular arrangement gives enough cover from return fire or from other positions.

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In general, I'd rather have more concealment if I'm going to engage in direct lay. I'd use (my) standard approach of crawling the last AS from unsighted to sighted, give them a short circular Target Arc at the start of the Slow leg, and another short, wedge-shaped TA facing through the (preferably Bocage) cover, plus a Deploy order at the terminal waypoint. Next order phase I'd start with the Target or Target Light command. Mostly I'd use Target Light, but on a scenario this short, might as well go all-out and shoot at maximum RoF. Of course your first two or three shots will be one-a-minute for ranging purposes, whichever RoF you choose.

 

Very good.  This will make a nice starting point to develop my own SOP for using mortars (successfully) in the direct fire role.  I'm sure I have been missing out on some tactical opportunities by my reluctance to use (and in my case lose) mortars in the direct fire role.  Do you have any general guidelines (rules of thumb) for deciding when to use mortars in the direct fire role instead of with a spotter?  Also are there any additional advantages to using direct fired mortars over indirect besides not tying up a HQ with spotting and (I think) the direct fire will FFE sooner since the middle man (HQ spotter) is not in the mix?       

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Very good.  This will make a nice starting point to develop my own SOP for using mortars (successfully) in the direct fire role.  I'm sure I have been missing out on some tactical opportunities by my reluctance to use (and in my case lose) mortars in the direct fire role.  Do you have any general guidelines (rules of thumb) for deciding when to use mortars in the direct fire role instead of with a spotter?  Also are there any additional advantages to using direct fired mortars over indirect besides not tying up a HQ with spotting and (I think) the direct fire will FFE sooner since the middle man (HQ spotter) is not in the mix?       

 

IMHO, mortars in a direct fire mode have two distinct (and potentially huge) advantages.

 

1)  As you already stated, Directed Fire mortars fire much more quickly. They are also much more accurate than a point fire mission with a spotter. They are much closer to the target than off map mortars and there is less dispersion of rounds. (I don't know if there's any difference in accuracy for DF or spotted missions for the same on map mortar team)

 

2)  DF mortars have a LOS advantage over all infantry units. You can test this yourself if you like- Put a rifle fireteam and a deployed mortar team next to each other facing a reverse slope. When you try to area fire with the fireteam you'll get the usual REVERSE SLOPE message, and if it slopes enough, NO LOS. However, the mortar team can direct fire onto the reverse slope, and even into areas where the fireteam has no LOS. 

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2)  DF mortars have a LOS advantage over all infantry units. You can test this yourself if you like- Put a rifle fireteam and a deployed mortar team next to each other facing a reverse slope. When you try to area fire with the fireteam you'll get the usual REVERSE SLOPE message, and if it slopes enough, NO LOS. However, the mortar team can direct fire onto the reverse slope, and even into areas where the fireteam has no LOS. 

 

Thanks for pointing this out.  I did have some understanding of this concept from reading the Game Manual 3.01 page 73, which states in part:  Spotters for indirect support weapons (as well as on-map mortars) are able to target areas slightly outside of direct LOS under certain circumstances.

 

I thought this was only with a spotter/indirect fire and did not know it would work with direct fire mortars.  I tried it out (not a proper test) and it worked. I had a fire team, a mortar team and a spotter all in the same action spot facing a ridge.  The fire team could target about up to the crest at 112 meters.  The spotter, spotting for the mortar team, could target 135 meters (approximately 23 meters past the crest of the ridge).  This could be expanded further with the circular area target.  The mortar, in direct fire, could target 161 meters (approximately 49 meters past the crest of the ridge). 

 

This might be very useful when defending or attacking a reverse slope position.  I think I will do some more experimenting around with this but it will probably find a place in my mortar SOP. :)   Thanks again. 

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Minute 26-25:
Members of 1st Platoon take more fire in the woods. At least they can see who is shooting at them.
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Figure 57 Taking fire on the left side of the woods


Just a little further away other members of their squad have no idea where the incoming fire is coming from.
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Figure 58 Taking fire from a head


On the right side of the woods 1st platoon continues to exchange fire with the Germans in the fox hole. Some of the Germans flee but some return fire from their position.
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Figure 59 The view of the foxholes


Over by the road the Germans have an excellent position to shoot down the road. It is like shooting fish in a barrel for them.
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Figure 60 Shooting fish in a barrel



In the barrel things are not great many teams are pinned and a casualty is taken. The good news is the tank is now in position to return fire. These guys are some nasty fish.
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Figure 61 In the barrel

 

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Minute 25: Orders
Tank will fire on the ambush team. The target order is to just behind the bocage. When you target troops behind cover you should: 1) target them if they are spotted, 2) area target behind the bocage and 3) target the bocage in front of them.

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Figure 62 Tank to return fire


Sometimes it takes a bit of fiddling to find the spots you can target behind the bocage but it is time worth spending. More rounds will go through the bocage and HE will more often explode on the enemy’s side of the bocage.
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Figure 63 Tank aims behind bocage


The men on the right side of the road cannot see the place the shots are coming from.
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Figure 64 Right road side cannot see shooter


The men on the left side of the road can see the location of the ambush team and they return fire. Again aiming behind the bocage.
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Figure 65 Left road side can


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Figure 66 Again aim behind bocage


The left flank MG joins in too. Their LOF does not extend all the way to where the ambush team is but they can fire along a trajectory that should cause some bullets to go their way.
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Figure 67 MG on left joins in


Over in the woods the orders are to fire on the known enemy locations. 3rd squad on the left of the woods fires on the enemy in the centre.
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Figure 68 Left woods fire plan


1st squad on the right fires at the enemy on the right and those fleeing. With the MG joining in.
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Figure 69 Right woods fire plan

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Figure 70 MG joins in

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Minute 25: Orders - continued

Meanwhile 2nd squad moves up to protect the others. They have speculative fire on other possible enemy positions in front of the woods.
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Figure 71 Reserve moves up to help


The mortar team did not reach their destination last turn so they have work still to do.
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Figure 72 Mortars just a little further

 

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Nice response.

 

Figure 71: 3 teams QUICKing up to the firing line. I'd stagger their moves with pause commands.

 

That Stuart on the road should prove pretty effective. Kind of hard to stand up to 37mm HE/canister and 2 or 3 machineguns.

 

How is your time budget working out?

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1) target them if they are spotted, 2) area target behind the bocage and 3) target the bocage in front of them.

Sometimes it takes a bit of fiddling to find the spots you can target behind the bocage but it is time worth spending. More rounds will go through the bocage and HE will more often explode on the enemy’s side of the bocage.

 

Personally, I'd have the suppression fires aim behind the bocage (or at the front of the bocage, if for some reason you can't get "just past it" to stick the end of the Target command down). That way, they keep firing once the enemy's heads go down, and rack the suppression up until they're properly pinned. If you only target them directly, they'll go to Cowering, you'll stop firing, and will often rally or remain able to react for longer. And the Stuart would, in my lexicon, be part of the suppression firebase.

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Figure 71: 3 teams QUICKing up to the firing line. I'd stagger their moves with pause commands.

Yeah, oops I should have done that. Everyone do as Ken says not as I do :D 

 

That Stuart on the road should prove pretty effective. Kind of hard to stand up to 37mm HE/canister and 2 or 3 machineguns.

Yep.  I doubt the Stuart will fire canister because it does not have a hard spot on the infantry but actually it would be nice if it did.

 

How is your time budget working out?

 

Only 5 minutes in - so not worried yet. I expect (OK I actually know but I'm pretending I don't) that there will be some enemy artillery coming at me at some point.  Hiding from that will chew up some time.

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Personally, I'd have the suppression fires aim behind the bocage (or at the front of the bocage, if for some reason you can't get "just past it" to stick the end of the Target command down). That way, they keep firing once the enemy's heads go down, and rack the suppression up until they're properly pinned. If you only target them directly, they'll go to Cowering, you'll stop firing, and will often rally or remain able to react for longer. And the Stuart would, in my lexicon, be part of the suppression firebase.

 

Yeah, understood.  The thing is suppression is nice and all but the idea is to kill the enemy.  Directed fire at a target has the best chance of doing that.  Hence my priority list. If you have multiple teams shooting then you can have some area fire to keep their heads down and some (most) trying to kill them.

 

Do not for get the goal is to kill them before they kill you.  As it always was and always will be in war.  So, you can pussy foot around with fire and manoeuvre and fancy names for stuff but the bottom line for me is if there are enemy soldiers in my sights there is only one goal. :angry: After they are dead we can go back to the fancy stuff to find more enemy units :D

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Yeah, understood.  The thing is suppression is nice and all but the idea is to kill the enemy.  Directed fire at a target has the best chance of doing that.  Hence my priority list. If you have multiple teams shooting then you can have some area fire to keep their heads down and some (most) trying to kill them.

 

Do not for get the goal is to kill them before they kill you.  As it always was and always will be in war.  So, you can pussy foot around with fire and manoeuvre and fancy names for stuff but the bottom line for me is if there are enemy soldiers in my sights there is only one goal. :angry: After they are dead we can go back to the fancy stuff to find more enemy units :D

I find the enemy die easiest after you've routed them out of their hard cover :)

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