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fighting in the fog (low visibility)

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LOS is very short, so don't spread your units out - they'll get picked off one by one as they stumble around in the fog. Ideally, sit still in good cover and let your opponent come to you, because you'll see or hear him first. Combat happens at VERY short ranges, so SMG squads and flamethrowers are handy. Because of the short ranges and surprise factor, casualties tend to be high and squads break easily - use leaders with good morale and keep company commanders near the front. Tanks live in mortal fear of zook teams hidden in the fog, but insane high-speed dashes through enemy lines can work quite well because you're in LOS of any threat for such a short time. Just don't stop ANYWHERE near a possible threat. Artillery is called down blind, or right on top of your own position. If it's foggy AND dark, watch out for your green squads - they'll quite possibly shoot up your own units during a firefight.

Fog... I hate it...

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I recommend building 'fire bases'. For me as, say germans, on defence, this involves a platoon (I don't like using smg platoons at night and stuff.. it's a bit over the top i think smile.gif ).. with a Schreck, and an MG. Preferably sitting in a solid big building with a couple of minefields out front. This hard-point can be very tough to break and tanks that get close enough can be easily chewed up. For extra security put another 'Shreck nearby but back a bit incase the first one gets a bit deaded.

A string of these hard points and a defence is very solid, esp. if you can arrange two out front and one further behind for some in depth stylee

Don't forget to try and be close to the flags. Otherwise someone could just bypass your hard points and sit on the flags till game end and it's very tough to go after them!



- Official owner of the sig files of Dalem, Croda and JeffShandorf -

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It should also be noted that fog is the attacker's friend. Typically, an attacker knows exactly where his objective is and can often make an educated guess as to defensive positions. The defender, however, must usually decide which avenue of attack his enemy will take and arrange his forces accordingly. Fog limits the long range spoiling abilities of defensive MG's, pillboxes, and AT guns. With a clear LOS, a defender can jockey fire bases about to guard against the attacker's troop movements and assaults. A much shorter LOS means a lot less time to react to an enemy push because you simply can't see it until it's on your doorstep.

Fighting in the fog often boils down to infantry vs. infantry. Typically an attacker has more infantry and no longer must concern himself with smoking assaults and faux assaults or long range attrition of his troops by dug-in, prepared defenses.

My .02 pfennig


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Originally posted by Clubfoot:

It should also be noted that fog is the attacker's friend.

I was about to say the opposite. I think low visibility helps the defender, because the attacker can't support his front units with his rear units. Another advantage is that the defender gets a devastating close range shot to start any infantry confrontations. My thought is that low visibility must have helped the defender in the actual war, because most attacks were launched in daylight.

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Fog helps infantry, hurts artillery, hurts armor, hurts towed guns most of all. In the armor vs. armor war, it helps the Allies.

A key thing in fog is to lead with the infantry, not the tanks. Have the tanks "charge" targets already identified by the infantry, from a flank if it is an enemy tank. Fire a few times and back up again. Keep infantry AT weapons reasonably far forward but a bit behind the squads. They will keep enemy armor from running through you.

Leaving armor up in range of enemy infantry to shoot it up, for any length of time, is an invitation to getting picked off from one of your own flanks. If your tanks can see infantry, then an enemy tank is probably on its way.

Artillery should fire close, or on TRPs for defenders. Another useful artillery tactic in fog is to call the mission just ahead of your own guys, but bug out rapidly (using "withdraw-run" if necessary) the same turn the shells are due.

As for who it helps more, of course it depends. If the ground is wide open otherwise and the defenders have decent numbers then it helps the attackers. It helps Allies against German tanks, but can also help German infantry against Allied combined arms.

When defending, deception tactics work better. For example, put some half-squads or LMGs ahead of the main position and run on first contact, to confuse the attacker about your real positions. (This can work well with TRPs too).

When attacking, pick a place and hit it hard enough to kill anything there, rapidly, but then disperse somewhat so that arty doesn't get you. Concentration of units works better on both sides, and the attacker has more units to do it with. But the defender has TRPs to partially make up for this, and the attacker doesn't.

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Here's one you missed, based on painful, expensive direct experience in my Forever War with Kingfish.

If the fog's dense enough, the attacker's on board mortars are useless. The problem is that it's essentially impossible for an HQ to see far enough ahead to target while remaining in red contact with the mortar AND meeting the 100m minimum range requirement for the mortar. You can't freetube even a 60mm mortar to get around this restriction either.

Time and again in our current game I theoretically met all the requirements, but still couldn't get a target line to stick. My mortar teams are no more useful than pig iron. Believe me when I say I could use their fires.

Scouts (split squads) are an absolute necessity, and trust me on this, they'll take

some real lumps. Expect your troops, even Regulars, to do all kinds of highly irrational things. Even with precautions they'll manage to shoot each other, run like scared mice without losing a man, fail to execute even the most straightforward commands, and, oh yes, ignore enemy troops in LOS at spitting range--

while being charged. Their morale is very brittle.

Mines are much easier to find by stepping on them, firefights are devastating, but maneuver is greatly improved by the absence of long range enemy MG fires. My current game with Kingfish is easily the most tactical maneuvering I've done since I started playing this game, and such tactics as bypassing points of resistance and outflanking revealed static defenses become doable, albeit awfully exciting. Big risks can pay major dividends, but they can easily get your force shredded.

For the record, we're playing a QB with computer selected forces. We've both seen the above craziness and worse. Kingfish got so browned off at some of his troops he asked me to kill them or he'd do it himself.

Fighting in the fog is NOT for the faint at heart. It WILL test your daring and your courage.


John Kettler

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Originally posted by Leonidas:

I was about to say the opposite. I think low visibility helps the defender, because the attacker can't support his front units with his rear units. Another advantage is that the defender gets a devastating close range shot to start any infantry confrontations. My thought is that low visibility must have helped the defender in the actual war, because most attacks were launched in daylight.

No, you're wrong : night/fog are the attacker's friends, because it allows him to strike where he wants, in force, without the defender being able to group and greet the attack.

OK, you can make killer ambushes, but any competent attacker wil send first some low value scouts to trigger them...

Only solution is to *guess* correctly where the attack will take place, and have yourself "scout" units to detect that, then a flexible defense to react accordingly.

All this doesn't even out : with same forces, a defender will have a *much* harder time at night or fog than in a sunny day.

Why do you think the Ardennes offensive started in bad weather ? not just because of allied air superority...

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I'm currently finishing two PBEM games with maximum visibility of 52 and 84 meters, and here's my fresh, hands on advice smile.gif

Armor still rules if you use it correctly. Jason's advice on this was much to the point. Spot enemy armor with infantry, and then surprise them with your own tanks (just killed 3 Hetzers using this tactics in one game). Against infantry, first use infantry units to spot and pin the enemy, and then bring tanks or halftracks in to finish them. HTs have been surprisingly useful in these situations. On the defence side it is more difficult. My best advice is to keep your tanks behind your strongholds and counterattack when you spot enemy tanks.

When it comes to infantry, if attacking use very tight formations and T- or V-shaped platoons so that you have maximum concentrated firepower. Try to engage single enemy units. Smoke might still be very useful for separating enemy infantry units from their close support. Defence is again somewhat more complicated, but I'd go with Jason again and recommend minefields in front of your strongholds, TRPs and deception. Oh, and remember that deception can be very useful when attacking also.

I think that fog battles are great fun since you will have lots of surprises. Use deception tactics, and at least one of you will have even greater fun biggrin.gif

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Great Post.

This thread has perfect timing.

I just started a meeting engagement that had time and weather set as random and sure enough it’s at night and heavy fog. It has only a 27meter LOS!

So much for my mortars.

And armor to armor will be barrel to barrel.

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Originally posted by Pascal DI FOLCO:

No, you're wrong : night/fog are the attacker's friends

I don't claim any special knowledge about this subject, but what's been said doesn't make sense to me. If night/fog favored the attacker, then why didn't all attacks take place at night? After all, the attacker usually gets to choose when he launches the attack. I'll take everyone's word for it that night/fog helps the attacker in CM. But I don't think the actual WWII combatants saw it that way. Isn't that a realism problem, then? Or maybe my history is wrong: Are you saying that a significant number of attacks in WWII actually were launched at night?

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Historically, a few units got good at night-fighting and used the attacking edge it can give to great effect. But most attempts to use the cover of night to achieve some tactical purpose failed. The reasons had almost nothing to do with CM scale factors.

The biggest issue was control, with land navigation a close second. Units flat get lost at night. They also get mixed up, stray out of command distances, panic more easily, "fall out" and straggle. Approach marches generally have to be made in very narrow single columns or the unit will scatter over the whole countryside. Any crossing or collision between columns is likely to produce friendly fire, blown surprise, and extreme disorder.

The more experienced the troops, and at night fighting in particular, the easier it is to overcome these problems. The smaller the unit, again the easier control realistically is. Even so, the most common successful use of night ops was to infiltrate an enemy position without combat, opening fire at dawn, on the often befuddled defenders who couldn't understand how the enemy got behind them, and often assumed the line was broken elsewhere, etc.

What is unrealistic about CM night combat is simply the lack of "friendly fog of war". The commander has perfect knowledge of the positions and states of all of his own troops. This never happens at night. And sighting reports get shared automatically and unambiguously, which also never really happens. Together, these allow a degree of coordination of friendly forces that might have been achieved, occasionally, by best commando units in well rehearsed operations.

In CM, friendly fire is more common at night, command delays are longer, command distances shorter, and unit morale is more brittle. But the troops are still hyper-coordinated and "robust" in adversity, compared to average real troops at night.

If you want a more realistic night game, restrict quality levels. Allow a maximum of "regular" for trained commandos, gurhkas, crack night sturmkompanies. Most units should be green, and anything that would otherwise be green or worse, make conscripts.

I'd also recommend dropping HQ bonuses for all but stealth ("?"), to a maximum of +1 (no squares). Change HQs with +1s to 0, and those with +2 to +1, while retaining the stealth rating as is. If a unit has 2-3 +1s in the first 3 categories, you might retain one of them, in combat (first choice) or morale (if without a combat bonus).

Examples -

+1 command/+1 morale -> just +1 morale

+2 command/+1 stealth -> +1 command/+1 stealth


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I'm currently playing a QB in the fog at dawn where I'm defending as the germans. The weather was set to random, so the reduced LOS had the potential to severely compromise my defenses (I had bought some fixed pieces that work much better in long LOS conditions).

I was fortunate enough to have purchased high quality troops that I have been using to some effect. The attacker has been cautious, but I have basically identified his main avenue of advance and he can expect several turns of heavy arty.

At this point (turn 10 of 40 - medium map), I have been able to hit some of his troops with arty and ambush a M8 and another unidentified AFV, without taking a single casualty.

Needless to say, I'm enjoying the fog! I only hope I still feel that way at turn 40...

Some of my description here may be a little vague, but I don't want to give too much away to my opponent in case he reads this post... I'll update you as the turns progress...

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Pssshoof ! I wanted to explain myself somewhat about WW2 "night attacks", but Jason Crawley already wrote a book on the subject tongue.giftongue.gif

So here's the short version : only quite experienced and trained troops were able to fight effectively at night, and this is not "simulated" in CM. For example a "real" man won't be able to recognize at once a friendly squad from a foe, in CM you can, always - even if there's some friendly fire to compensate...

Moreover, in the case of Western Front 44-45, the attackers were usually the Allies, and night/fog prevented them the use of their main assets : artillery and airplanes.

And their infantry wasn't very experienced : so no night attacks. And the Germans weren't much on the offense, but as I said they made

use of the bad weather to launche their Ardennes offensive.

So perhaps it's "gamey" to make night/fog attacks in CM, but it's really easier for the attacker at this scal and with the control you have over your troops.

Uh, well, it' aint't so short, my Crawleysation has begun biggrin.gifbiggrin.gif

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