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Suggestion: US M1919A6 Ammo Bearers in Airborne Squads


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This isn't a bug since I doubt anything is malfunctioning, but I've noticed that in both CMBN and CMFB, there's an annoying quirk about the behavior of US airborne squads. The squads have two men with carbines, who I believe are ammo bearers for the squad's M1919A6 LMG. If you use the "Split Squad" command, they stay with the MG. But if that team (or the whole squad) is ordered to fire, even on "Target Light," and the target is within the carbines' 300m range, the ammo bearers also fire their carbines. I find this frustrating since they add very little to the MG's firepower, and if the team is ordered to provide prolonged suppressive fire they'll quickly use up all their carbine ammo. The squad onyl carries 150 rounds of .30 cal carbine ammo, since everyone else has weapons that fire .30 cal M2 or .45 cal. The guys with carbines then end up out of ammo before the fighting gets closer-in and their carbines might really be useful. The only answer is to try to find a way of splitting that separates the carbine soldiers from the MG, but that is (I believe) ahistorical and contrary to doctrine, as well as being cumbersome and a little tricky in-game.

I assume this happens because the M1919A6 is coded as a personal weapon, not as a heavy weapon, since it's within a squad. The ammo bearers are therefore coded as ordinary soldiers, so they fire, unlike the ammo bearers in dedicated heavy weapon teams who hold fire. But there is apparently already some mechanism in the game for certain squad members to hold fire while helping man an LMG. In German squads, for example, there's always one guy who puts away his Kar 98 to help the MG42 gunner. It would be nice if the US airborne ammo bearers--or at least one of them--did this too.

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  • 3 weeks later...
On 6/18/2019 at 11:20 AM, General Liederkranz said:

if the target is within the carbines' 300m range, the ammo bearers also fire their carbines

That is point blank range for an MG.  If the enemy is that close, it's probable that the carbines would be used at that range for desperate self defense(?).

Edited by Erwin
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28 minutes ago, Erwin said:

That is point blank range for an MG.  If the enemy is that close, it's probable that the carbines would be used at that range for desperate self defense(?).

I think the OP is observing that 150 rounds don't go very far and doesn't add much to the MG. While, I'm assuming their rate of fire falls in line with the general behavior of a lower rate of fire when engaged beyond effective range - it would be nice to somehow be able to explicitly control fire of the bearers.

At the moment - it hurts to see them add their fire to the MG and results in their expending all rounds while the MG still has several hundred left.

I believe the OP understands that it is what it is and doesn't expect a fix (it's not a bug - more a limitation of the engine).

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I fear we have bits more of an issue here. The HMG squads (or large teams), particularly german ones should be splittable in any case! In RL the 3-4 ammo guys went back into full cover and let the gunner and his 1-2 assitants do their jobs alone.  In CMX2 we have nothing but a big target for any enemy (return) fires. I usually work around by setting crew size to 50% in editor, even if it leaves the 3 guys carrying the ammo for six. But better this, than the BFC default solution IMHO.

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11 hours ago, General Liederkranz said:

On the flip side, the large teams allow the MG to stay in action longer. With US teams that are split, you will sometimes end up with the three-man team all wounded or dead and no way for the ammo bearers to take over the MG.

Yes, but that´s a gamey design decision. Nothing to compare with RL. If a HMG team is about to receive losses, better pack up and switch position. Human player can and the AIP is capable too with proper AI scripting, as well as applying appropiate soft factors.  If the HMG weapon as such gets knocked out, the ammo bearers are of no further use anyway. Just IMHO.  :)

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2 hours ago, RockinHarry said:

If a HMG team is about to receive losses, better pack up and switch position. Human player can and the AIP is capable too with proper AI scripting, as well as applying appropiate soft factors.

I'd really love to see those scripts, because I haven't got a clue how I would do that TBH.

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5 hours ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

I'd really love to see those scripts, because I haven't got a clue how I would do that TBH.

 would try to achieve by applying to the methods mentioned in post here:

Haven´t scripted HMG in a mission yet (beside the ones in that enter germany mission), but I´d do by use of enemy terrain triggers, timers and as said by cutting crews into half to avoid unnecessary losses. (why loose 6 guys instead of 3 when the crew anyway is already decimated and of no huge danger to anybody anymore = big morale hit). With regard to soft factors I´d tone down morale to "not so good" in order to make them retreat on their own once they receive effective enemy fire. A -1 or -2 leader might help as well. Yet I´d preserve higher experience so they´re of any use at all.

Basically that should get to work I think. At least for a majority of appropiate situations (HMG gets spotted by enemy and receives highly effective return fires). Thus using longest possible ranges and keyholed positions for HMG IMO is of major importance.

The "retreat on their own" thingy off course is not to be relied upon too often. With the TacAI oftenly choosing retreat paths in odd ways things could become even worse. So a -1 or -2 leader might be not that good an idea, but otherwise... I´d try this way basically. :)

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If you are going to do that for each gun, you will run out of terrain objectives real fast.  :mellow:

It doesn't actually even do what you are suggesting either.....A trigger is utterly unable to have a HMG pack up to avoid losses, it can pack up to avoid being flanked, but nothing in that script would prevent them being pulverised by a mortar strike, disassembled with direct tank fire, or just picked off by a sniper.

Edited by Sgt.Squarehead
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