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Struggling with the use of Armour


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This isn't specific to CW but it has manifested itself early on because I've been trying to do the NTC campaign extremely unsuccesfully.

 

When there isn't any cover, how does one approach with armour and destroy tanks waiting in overwatch? I can spot the ENY tanks with my infantry, that's not an issue, so I know where they are, but when the ENY are sat there waiting for me to pop up over the hill, even if I'm careful to get into Hull Down, I just don't see how I don't take vast casualties because the advantage in spotting is obviously to the person waiting there with their sights on the horizon rather than me driving over the top.

 

I guess I could get my INF to throw smoke to let me get into position but I'm not sure how feasible this is every time.

 

Not fighting in the ENY kill-zone is obviously impossible in these missions because there's no other way around and the points are for destroying the ENY so they do need to be engaged.

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So my advice is to always try and offer your opponent dilemma.  Particularly if you are the attacker.  So here maneuver become extremely important, try and come at the opponent from different angles simultaneously (90 degrees is very good).  The pull up multiple shooters at the same time, here you are leaning on the weight of your firepower, which as the attacker is normally heavier that the guy dug in.  Then if you have support (arty or air), you should try and time its arrival with all of the rest of this.  

In the end, you wind up with a system overload situation on your opponent.  If you try to do onesy-twosy sneeky peeky they will sit back and pick you off one by one and you are right the attacker is at a sever disadvantage here.  If you have no choice but sneaky-peek, use the M901s, the periscope system works so you can fire without exposing the vehicle, that and the little guys are wicked accurate.

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Mmm - I must say that the NTC campaign seems well designed from the pretext that "many commanders coming to Fort Irwing where shocked with the effectiveness of the OPFOR and the enemy equipment they faced"... :)

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6 minutes ago, The_Capt said:

So my advice is to always try and offer your opponent dilemma.  Particularly if you are the attacker.  So here maneuver become extremely important, try and come at the opponent from different angles simultaneously (90 degrees is very good).  The pull up multiple shooters at the same time, here you are leaning on the weight of your firepower, which as the attacker is normally heavier that the guy dug in.  Then if you have support (arty or air), you should try and time its arrival with all of the rest of this.  

In the end, you wind up with a system overload situation on your opponent.  If you try to do onesy-twosy sneeky peeky they will sit back and pick you off one by one and you are right the attacker is at a sever disadvantage here.  If you have no choice but sneaky-peek, use the M901s, the periscope system works so you can fire without exposing the vehicle, that and the little guys are wicked accurate.

 

Thanks for the reply and help.

I have become more comfortable with WW2 infantry based games because you can see where you're taking fire from, and then use that information to re-position in order to condense firepower onto that spot to kill/suppress the enemy. Clearly with armour it's a little tricky when one bad move means you are turned into a human torch inside a steel tin can.

I'll re-try the first mission focussing on overwhelming the enemy with armour from different angles once I've done some recon and see how that plays out. 

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5 minutes ago, mazex said:

Mmm - I must say that the NTC campaign seems well designed from the pretext that "many commanders coming to Fort Irwing where shocked with the effectiveness of the OPFOR and the enemy equipment they faced"... :)

Bil was abused as a young sprog there and now he must pay it forward.

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44 minutes ago, Flibby said:

I got the first mission eventually but the second? The ENY spotting seems to be 10x more effective than the M60s I have been given. From range even when hull down I get wiped out. Do you just have to charge the enemy?

Nice to hear I am not alone. Had not read Bil's advice and rode into the valley of death cocky as... Had only lost one M60 in the first mission so I thought this would be easy... Now that valley looks like the Sinai desert after the Egyptians fled their burning tanks... Or El Alamein where there are still wrecks rusting to this day. I played rather cautiously waiting for the reinforcements while hammering off with arty and Cobras and only lost one M60 before the additional M-60s arrived. No matter how I roll it the T-72s pick us off like it was Desert storm and they have M1A1s and I ride the T72s :) Lucky for us that the Soviets did not attack in the late 70:ies and early 80:ies. At least with me commanding the US forces. As a Swede I start thinking if a Strv 103 half dug into the sand would fair better against the T-72s? I still remember killing three of them though in a forest at an exercise with AT-4s as they could not turn on the narrow road when my infantry platoon ambushed them with a well placed "pull mine" ambush (tank mines tied together with ropes pulled up infront of the first tank at the same time you pull a string of mines behind them... Like shooting fish in a barrel. Fond cold war memories :)).

Edited by mazex
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I get a feeling that one generic problem with CMx2 is that the LOF is rather "picky", one second you have it - one second not... I try to roll with all my 10 M60 tanks in line / wedge whatnot formation and even though the landscape is very flat and open it is almost always ends up in a one on one engagement when a Soviet tank is detected. Sometimes two of my M60s engage a T-72 together but it is very hard to get the expected result where a T-72 is spotted and 3-4 tanks target it together that should turn the tables? Sure - we do not want any cheating, if there is no LOF it should not be possible to shoot - but to some extent a commander that notice that the target is getting a bit obscured by a rock / tree / gully would reverse 5 meters or similar instead of just staying where they are - almost with LOF? And if you notice that the tank next to you starts firing at some target to the left you would probably have noticed the dust plume and notified the rest of the platoon that would have "micro positioned" their tanks so that no small ridge ends up obscuring the LOF to that target? Try playing a first person tank game firing at a distant target where you do NOT move a bit forward when a ridge just obscures your target etc. When you are hull down and the target gets out of sight you roll forward 2 meters to be able to fire... Not in CMx2 where the LOF and LOS is lost and that tank spends the rest of the 60 seconds doing nothing?

So - in a scenario like this where 10 M60 tanks are rolling in a flat landscape and know the general location of the enemy they would not spend 60 seconds where 1 tank is exchanging rounds with a T-72 finally getting punctured and the other tanks around it just stand still doing nothing to help... And they are in both close visual range with their platoon members, radio link etc...

Edited by mazex
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The Capt has some good advice, here's a few other thoughts.

  • While your M60's don't have smoke grenades, don't forget about smoke rounds for the main gun or artillery smoke.
  • Try to make sure your tanks have good intel on where the enemy is before peeking, infantry can pass info to turned out tank commanders.
  • Pay attention to who has thermals (TOW vehicles)
  • When you do move into a position, don't just sit there, pop up for a moment then back down. Unless I'm sitting defensively with great fire superiority, I tend to be scooting up and back as needed to feel out the situation. You can do all the annoying spotting stuff to the enemy as well to be out of LOS before they get shots on you. The lack of a hull down order that has the AI move as need and reload in cover is unfortunate, but you can roughly time it out once you get a feel for the spot and engagement times.  
  • You can use very short peeks from cover to test a new position or to do a bait and switch, with one tank peeking for a second to draw attention and withdrawing, followed by other tanks moving up to engage.  
  • You don't need a total victory in every mission, pick your fights if you can. 
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1 hour ago, Ryujin said:

The Capt has some good advice, here's a few other thoughts.

  • While your M60's don't have smoke grenades, don't forget about smoke rounds for the main gun or artillery smoke.
  • Try to make sure your tanks have good intel on where the enemy is before peeking, infantry can pass info to turned out tank commanders.
  • Pay attention to who has thermals (TOW vehicles)
  • When you do move into a position, don't just sit there, pop up for a moment then back down. Unless I'm sitting defensively with great fire superiority, I tend to be scooting up and back as needed to feel out the situation. You can do all the annoying spotting stuff to the enemy as well to be out of LOS before they get shots on you. The lack of a hull down order that has the AI move as need and reload in cover is unfortunate, but you can roughly time it out once you get a feel for the spot and engagement times.  
  • You can use very short peeks from cover to test a new position or to do a bait and switch, with one tank peeking for a second to draw attention and withdrawing, followed by other tanks moving up to engage.  
  • You don't need a total victory in every mission, pick your fights if you can. 

Great advice - the problem is that this kind of micro management should really be handled by the TacAI in my opinion. If I give a hull down order to a tank it should peek up over the cover with just the gun and fire. Then back down while reloading and possibly evaluating the situation. No World of Tanks peekaboo but "normal" hull down behavior. And when using WeGo that I really like many of the good advice above will not work and you will end up with the scenario I described above where 90% of your tanks just stand there in rather flat terrain - almost with LOF - doing nothing while the solo tank with LOF gets hammered... They might even have LOS but still just idle as some pixel obscures the shot.

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5 hours ago, mazex said:

the problem is that this kind of micro management should really be handled by the TacAI in my opinion.

That would be an awsome add to the TacAI. At the moment that is just a feature ask and my understanding is a pretty big one too. For right now you need to do a bit of micro managing - maybe someday.

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1 hour ago, IanL said:

That would be an awsome add to the TacAI. At the moment that is just a feature ask and my understanding is a pretty big one too. For right now you need to do a bit of micro managing - maybe someday.

Yep - and as an old developer myself I fully understand that this really is no easy task. How much autonomy should the TacAI have? If I ordered 5 tanks in line formation to point X and a target to the left and right gets detected by the flank tanks. What should the three tanks in the middle prioritize to assist in getting a LOF for? If they roll pretty far from the destination I picked they might get flanked by some other tanks I knew about and I would scream "stupid TacAI!". 

But as it is now a WeGo line of 10 tanks where only 1 or when lucky 2 engage a detected solo T-72 because of a small ridge makes it very hard to get the benefit of having a numerical superiority and it ends up with 1:1 shootouts where a single stationary T-72s gets the upper hand on the 10 moving M60s... So you have to creep micro managing all the tanks so that all of them have LOS/LOF on the area where you suspect the enemy is. And as that is VERY hard to understand on the path you plan to travel with the current LOF tools (target line) you have to find a potential end destionation for all tanks that looks like it has LOF. But if you then issue a HUNT command they may stop at the wrong location spending most of the 60 seconds without supporting their platoon mate on peak getting hammered... A LOS / LOF tool like in Steel Division 2 would make it a bit easier to understand why the heck most of your tanks cannot get a LOF on that T-72 that looks like it is in a wide open desert. The worst terrrain is actually the one that is ALMOST flat. When there is a big gully you know that you will have LOF wherever you are on route to your destination.

Or you have to get smoke in front of them even though you want that lovely line of 10 tanks storming across the desert that truly would make a solo T-72 back very fast out from the very small ridge that barely covers them from 9 of the tanks instead of firing at the 1 tank they have LOF on...

Edited by mazex
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3 hours ago, MikeyD said:

My two cents. Play close to the ground. In open terrain situations being able to distinguish terrain micro-details makes all the difference. You can use camera level 4 and higher to plot out broad maneuver paths but looking over your unit's shoulder while jockeying for a shot is useful.

I appreciate the comment Mikey. My issue is that at some point I have to go over a hill in view of the enemy to fire at them, and at that point on a barren hill, even if I'm hull down, my guys get lit up and I start to enrage...

In normal circumstances there'd be a different round to take but this is just s billard table flat desert with ledges as you mentioned. They offer cover which I get but is no use when I can't fire from that position....

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Was getting depressed and had to try something where those T-72s had to attack instead. Good - look who's burning in the field now? Needed this after that desert :) Not that I had much left to give in the end and only one M60 surviving...

The TOWs and M47s really helped out a lot. Attacking with tanks in ~1980 is not easy. Maybe realistic but it sure is easier with some obstacles and more obvious LOF lines... That M150 that unfortunately paid the ultimate price had four T-72s accounted for. And in a more stationary position the TacAI did fire and then back down nicely to reload in cover etc... Accept that last time when I think a BMP-1 got it with an AT-3 or 5. Felt deserved somehow.

5pf521P.png

 

Edited by mazex
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