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Rolling Barrages


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2 minutes ago, FogForever said:

Is it possible to do rolling barrages?  I have been reading about the Brits and Canadians in Normandy.  It seems every formal attack was an advance behind a rolling barrage.

Not really.

One, obviously quite difficult, option is to set up a fire pattern with multiple FOB‘s and multiple firing batteries. Which is, eh, quite difficult to achieve.

A more practical option: Your FOB, or whoever directs the fire, can adjust the fire by a few meters without causing a big delay or cancellation. I.e., you can order fire on a target and after a few rounds you can set the target about 50m without much of a disruption and then again.

But that‘s not the sort of rolling fire, you asked about. Which lead me to the question, if this rolling fire is within the scope of CM at all. CM is quite micro tactical and your rolling fire requires a lot of pre-planning on higher levels.

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The problem with adjusting the fire is you need LOS to plot the fire.  Rolling barrages are timed adjustment of fire not required any observer input. 

Myself, I think they definitively fit within the game.  At least in Normandy, the norm for British/Canadian infantry assaults involved following a rolling barrage.  And I imagine it was the standard throughout WW2 for Brits/Canadians.  Undoubtedly used by other armies as well.

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1 hour ago, FogForever said:

The problem with adjusting the fire is you need LOS to plot the fire.  Rolling barrages are timed adjustment of fire not required any observer input.   Myself, I think they definitively fit within the game.  

Have you tried using Target Reference Points (TRP)s?  Might also have to add more long duration artillery batteries.  

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One day in spring '44 whilst hauling a consignment of 25lbr shells to Portsmouth Docks, Paddy's Bedford veered off the road and slammed into the side wall of The Bridge Tavern. Having gingerly extricated himself from the wreckage Paddy finds PC Plod waiting for him, notebook in hand.

Plod :- Been drinking have we, Sir?

Paddy :- Drink, me fecking arse! I got distracted by some gob****e calling me a Brit. Now, be on you bike and tell Mr. Jorrocks to send some REME boys to get me truck out of the fecking pub wall.

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11 hours ago, MOS:96B2P said:

Have you tried using Target Reference Points (TRP)s?  Might also have to add more long duration artillery batteries.  

This.

  1. Buy/provide enough TRPs to track the end points of your barrage and enough tubes to service it at the intensity you want for the duration you require.
  2. Use your highest level HQ (or any HQ you want that's not going to be needing to call other missions for the duration of the rolling barrage) to plot and continuously adjust a linear barrage mission the TRPs (you can plot a linear barrage with its ends in different TRPs...).
  3. Robert's your auntie's live-in lover.
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16 hours ago, StieliAlpha said:

A more practical option: Your FOB, or whoever directs the fire, can adjust the fire by a few meters without causing a big delay or cancellation. I.e., you can order fire on a target and after a few rounds you can set the target about 50m without much of a disruption and then again.

But that‘s not the sort of rolling fire, you asked about. Which lead me to the question, if this rolling fire is within the scope of CM at all. CM is quite micro tactical and your rolling fire requires a lot of pre-planning on higher levels.

Something that has been asked for (by me and others) is the ability to call fire on a "map coordinate"  In game terms I think it would be the same as calling where there is a line of sight, just placing the cursor at a location. That would allow the ability to call fire on say, a sound contact. This is something that was/is commonly done. Currently there is no ability to call for fire on enemy *just* over the crest of a hill where LOS is blocked, even though you know they are there. In real life, the CFF is given using map coordinates, so whether you can ID an enemy at a map coord or not, you still send map coords.

Most likely it would come with some variation penalty, since your real life estimate of the sound contact vs reading the map location may not be as accurate as it would for an enemy in sight, but I wouldn't want excessive error. It's sometimes hard to come up with map coords for a target if the ground is large and featureless. Sometimes in those cases you get a round out there and start adjusting.

For the out of LOS missions, it would be a FFE mission. No point sending adjusting rounds.

I hope this is something that will be added one day.

Note that everything I mentioned here applies to WW2 and CW too, but for BS and SF2, artillery fire control is more computerized, GPS enabled, with widespread use of laser rangefinders. Even for CW period actions, FO procedures were not greatly different from WW2 and in many cases true of Fire Direction Center equipment and procedures. TACFIRE (the first really computerized fire control system), for the US was just becoming operational. We had FADAC (Field Artillery Digital Analog Computer) but it was next to useless - 450lbs of deadweight. 

Dave

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15 hours ago, FogForever said:

I did not say, they would not fit to the time frame or the portrayed theatres. I said rolling barrages do not really fit to the games scale.

Rolling barrages were fire missions minutely planned on division or corps level, executed by hundreds of guns according to a precise time schedule. What you would experience on CM level would be a „scenario pre-condition“, an initial order along the lines:

- move to your unit to starting line A at 09.50h

- artillery fire on line B will commence at 09.55h

- move you unit forward to line B at 10.00h and take cover until artillery fire moves forward to line C

- artillery fire will move forward to line C at 10.05h

- live, die, repeat….

Though I can imagine to see that on large maps, it does sound much like a thrilling CM scenario.

But indeed, currently I am playing Operation Linett on a huge map with a battalion sized German attack and wish, I would have had such a pre-planned fire pattern available.🤓

Edited by StieliAlpha
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16 hours ago, MOS:96B2P said:

Have you tried using Target Reference Points (TRP)s?  Might also have to add more long duration artillery batteries.  

Exactly - you do rolling barrages using TRPs. It's fun, in a stealing-candy-from-a-baby sort of way, and it works fine

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3 minutes ago, Freyberg said:

Exactly - you do rolling barrages using TRPs. It's fun, in a stealing-candy-from-a-baby sort of way, and it works fine

And/or, trust the scenario designer to have abstracted the preparatory "rolling" barrage involving naval, air, and artillery over the course of hours as one begins their setup on maps much too small to otherwise accommodate it.

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Trouble with rolling barrages in CM is they take a lot of rounds delivered by quite a lot of tubes, and if you have that many tubes, with enough TRPs to make the creeping bombardment line, many players would find much better things to do with the assets than blindly flatten strips of land... You'd have to trust people to realise that's what the immense quantity of ordnance was for, and to employ it as bounded by the scenario's premise.

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1 hour ago, womble said:

Trouble with rolling barrages in CM is they take a lot of rounds delivered by quite a lot of tubes, and if you have that many tubes, with enough TRPs to make the creeping bombardment line, many players would find much better things to do with the assets than blindly flatten strips of land... You'd have to trust people to realise that's what the immense quantity of ordnance was for, and to employ it as bounded by the scenario's premise.

It would be nice for the scenario designer to be able to set up rolling barrages though, with the player acting as the lower ranking officer who has to work with what the higher-ups have planned for this attack. Likewise for big rocket barrages.

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1 hour ago, Bulletpoint said:

It would be nice for the scenario designer to be able to set up rolling barrages though, with the player acting as the lower ranking officer who has to work with what the higher-ups have planned for this attack. Likewise for big rocket barrages.

You could do a series of scenarios, maybe, for each phase line of the barrage, with the player setting off "just as the bombardment has moved to the next line". They could be short, very focused scenarios.

 

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12 minutes ago, womble said:

You could do a series of scenarios, maybe, for each phase line of the barrage, with the player setting off "just as the bombardment has moved to the next line". They could be short, very focused scenarios.

 

Like: Sit tight, rush 100m, sit tight? Boah, 😵😵😵

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23 minutes ago, womble said:

You could do a series of scenarios, maybe, for each phase line of the barrage, with the player setting off "just as the bombardment has moved to the next line". They could be short, very focused scenarios.

 

Thinking about it further: The general idea of the OP has some merit. Scan the records of historical “rolling barrage” missions, try to find some “scenario worthy” small scale action and try to design a pre-set barrage around it…

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4 hours ago, womble said:

Trouble with rolling barrages in CM is they take a lot of rounds delivered by quite a lot of tubes, and if you have that many tubes, with enough TRPs to make the creeping bombardment line, many players would find much better things to do with the assets than blindly flatten strips of land... You'd have to trust people to realise that's what the immense quantity of ordnance was for, and to employ it as bounded by the scenario's premise.

Stuff like this kind of just emphasizes to me how over-configured CM is for the Panzer Blitz style operation, and how much we all seem to be very captured by very "Prussian" ideas of fighting. Moonscaping the land with thousands of rounds of heavy artillery fire? Measure coverage by gun per 7 meters or gun per meter or guns per meter even? Yet for Allied Commanders such questions were the norm, not the exception. 

Rolling barrages can be managed with the  tools CM happens to have, but admittedly only very crude ones. CM just isn't configured around operational or the sort of day-to-day activities of fighting Armies-the support tabs are both holdovers from Shock Force's 2007 design and philosophy and are aging the fastest, second only to the non-contextual hard map edges...

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