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CMBB - Soviets in the worst of 43


PLM2
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Any tips (against human players) for playing the Soviets in 43? The bad parts of 43 where your best tanks cant handle Stugs. And in the worst kind of terrain. Light trees open ground. Maybe gentle slopes too. Flat is a nitemare. KVs just run away from enemy Stugs from almost 1000 meters. It seems the only chance you stand is at close range.

In an ME, should i bring regular tanks or Vets? green?

I cant see how Soviets even survied that year. It seems like You can only buy as many tanks as your German enemy unless maybe you bought conscript which are useless.

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utilize the superior maneuverability of Soviet tanks. buy light tanks instead of KVs and T-34s. they are dirty cheap so you get hordes of them. flank fast behind the StuGs from a number of directions. StuGs turn real slow and are easy target. keep moving. go for medium or large maps. call in lots of smoke if necessary.

your cherry picking opponent is likely to quit the game in disgust and anger as your tiny tanks swarm his clumsy formations and KO his precious Nazi junk. rememer to type lots of LOLZ and OWn3d.

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Any tips (against human players) for playing the Soviets in 43?
Speed and cooperative team tactics are your best weapon. The T34/76 does have its limitations, but makes up for it with speed and relatively low cost.

With parameters set to 1500 pt ME / July '43 / both sides Mechanized and medium experience I can spend 360 points on Axis armor. That will give me a platoon (3 vehicles) of StuGIII with 80mm frontal armor, and just enough left over to buy one PzIIC for scouting.

On the allied side the same parameters allow for 659 points to be spent on armor. This allows me to buy 2 platoons of T34/76(late), a total of 6 tanks, and 2 T-70s for scouting (or swap the 2 T-70s for an additional T34/76).

Use quick dashes to whatever cover is available, with the goal of flanking the StuGs. Their weakness comes with the lack of turrets, especially in a mobile battle, as MEs usually are.

You should also consider purchasing an 81mm mortar spotter. This will allow you to drop a quick and sizeable smokescreen to cover your advance, or to blind the StuGs. The 6-tube spotter only costs 97 points, leaving you enough left over to buy a 76mm spotter for general use.

In an ME, should i bring regular tanks or Vets? green?
Go with Regs or Greens. The miniscule difference in performance of Vets does not justify the added costs. Note that by choosing green units you can now have 7 T34/76s and the 2 T-70s. 9 tanks to his 4 are good odds, even if yours are at a disadvantage.

I cant see how Soviets even survied that year. It seems like You can only buy as many tanks as your German enemy unless maybe you bought conscript which are useless.
Not true. You can buy twice the number of tanks as the Germans if both side's parameters are the same.
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PLM2,

"I cant see how Soviets even survied that year."

That's easy to explain. Real-life 1943 Soviets didn't have a point system limiting them to a piddling 2-1 numerical advantage against the Germans. 3-1 at minimum, 6-1 if you can manage it: that's the proper Red Army way to do business in any kind of manuever situation. And that's what they did, most of the time.

Also IMHO the 76.2mm Soviet AT gun is underpowered in CMBB, I think in reality it could punch through 80mm of armor at close ranges, but that's just me whining which doesn't help you.

Ok, here are some irritating things you can do if your opponent insists on ueber-Stugs, flat terrain, good visibility, and at worst a 2-1 numerical disadvantage if you are fielding T-34. If any of it sounds gamey, well you didn't start it.

1. Get a zillion tank hunter teams, or not quite a million sapper squads. If you are in steppe terrain they can advance/hide almost with impunity up to about 200 m., and if you are willing to take the casualties eventually you'll eventually get some explosives on his gun deck.

2. Get a bunch of tank hunter teams and/or engineers, not a zillion but still a lot, and then with the points you save reinforcet them with swarms of AT rifles. Think hail fire from around the clock. An AT rifle can punch through a Stug's side armor at 200 m. or less, on the odd occasion, and though most of the time you'll ping him the German will have all sorts of trouble finding yer riflemen. It is hilarious to get 10-12 rifles firing on a single Stug, the assault gun kind of acts like a rhino under attack by bees. And of course once it begins charging in random directions, sooner or later it will run onto one of your tank killer teams.

3. Insist on a small board with moderate hills. Then either:

a. Use your tanks to gully-run their way to the side of a Stug. After all, if he is only to take snap shots when your guys top a ridge he is going to have trouble; Stugs suck at snap shots unless you're heading right at/away from them.

b. Forget the T-34s, buy the infantry AT mix of your choice, except don't spend all it. Reserve out about 500 points or so and buy AT guns; 76,2 or 45mm will do. 500 points will get you something like a dozen tubes. Then set the guns up in cover on high spots so they can overwatch where the Stugs will go. Then nail him in the flank.

4. Buy a mix of AT rifle teams and tank hunter teams - not a zillion and not a ton but still a bunch - and with the points you save buy a pair of cannon-armed Sturmoviks. No further comment necessary, I think.

[ March 04, 2005, 07:53 AM: Message edited by: Bigduke6 ]

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The L/42 gun on the T-34/76 and the SU-76 could penetrate an 80mm front plate at about 500m, in CMBb they can't even at point-black.

Makes all the difference in the world if you have enough tanks to just keep them coming until somebody is close enough but not the control or room to get around the defenders in clever ways.

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Look up Valentines with the 57mm gun [iX I think] See how cheap they are, see how good the gun is, smile a lot. Still try to get trees and rolling terrain though and a few T34 for anti-infantry work.

I have flukily killed a Stug at 1454 metres with a Valentine and at 1013 metres on the rear more normally. Both in competitive games.

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Thanks for the posts guys. I usually go for Vet T-34s. Next time i'll go for regular or maybe even green.

If you do rushes at enemy tanks, isnt it quite possible for your tanks to stop short and do a reverse?

In the game i played before posting this, i had a t-34/76 150 meters from A stug, the Stug wasnt even aiming yet and he did an immediate reverse and got KOd whereas i expected it to fire as it had a cover arc on it and i'd think it would stand a chance.

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  • 2 weeks later...
  • 2 weeks later...

I have read the tactics vs. the "Uber tanks" - hit them in the flanks or rear where the armor is weakest. So I'd like to ask was this a weakness especially for German tanks or were the allied tanks (both West and Russians) much more susceptible to hits from the side and rear (IS-III ?) also. I mean if you were a German AFV with an 88mm gun given the frontal armour of most allied AFVs, you'd probably find it less necessary to need to hit from the side or rear but lets say you have a 50mm PAK.

Or is the tactic of getting to the flanks of the Uber tanks a specific against the germans move due to a combination of things (slow turret, slower movement, weak side/rear armour). Would all those flaws be present in a heavy allied tank also?

conan

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Depends on the specific tank as to how well it works, but attacking from the flanks is a standard way to engage heavy armour, as the heaviest plates are to the fore, as are the best observation devices.

Base level tanks of both sides (except the Panther) had side armour close to the front in terms of thickness, but uparmouring tended to increase the front plates only.

Hits to the sides and rear allow hits to the engine compartment and easier hits on the tracks and running gear, which can give a mobility kill even if you can't get through the hull.

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If he ever takes a StuG, insist on "rarity off". Then take -

(1) 57mm towed ATGs. Kill Tigers, 2/3rds the cost of a T-34 with rarity off.

(2) Sturmoviks. Strafing can kill or immobilize Panthers or less.

(3) Su-152s. Vulnerable themselves but kill whatever they hit. Also slaughter infantry.

(4) T-34/57s. Best Russian gun on the best Russian chassis. If he complains they are rare, mention Tigers.

(5) Valentine IXs. Lousy against infantry and slow, but cheap and can kill a StuG from the front.

(6) If he never takes anything but StuGs, hordes of T-70s rather than T-34s. Either needs a flank. Either dies when he looks at it. 2.5 times as many T-70s.

(7) Pioneers. For their DCs in close, on defense in tight terrain.

(8) AT mines. On defense in tight terrain especially. In towns, use roadblocks instead.

(9) smoke from 82mm mortars, on map and off.

(10) Snipers to cap his TCs.

If you want to use a realistic force instead, using T-34s and 76mm towed guns, then insist he use Pz IVs and Marders etc.

There is no realism fighting StuGs in CM, let alone Tigers, because Russian 76s aren't modeled correctly and 80mm German plates are riculously overmodeled.

In 1943, for example, 80mm armor regularly bounces Russian 85mm at 600 yards. (Don't take SU-85s for instance. In 1944 the Russia ammo modeling is less German physics -ee, and you can use T-34/85s).

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So this topic pops up for the 3,435th time . . .

If you do a search you'll find endless posts on dealing with '43 as Soviets.

BB favors Soviets for June '41 to May '45. '43 is no exception. It is a complete misnomer to label them "uber" stugs.

-stug only has 2.5-3.5 turns of HE to unload. That is only enough HE to take out 1.5 squads if you know what you're doing, which can rally. So a platoon of stugs can knock out a platoon of russian infantry. *yawn*. If that's enough to stop your attack, with the plethora of bodies available than you don't deserve the win anyway.

I always play "large" or "huge" maps which usually gives Russians plenty of flanking options. But if he's got me locked down I don't sweat it. Forget about the damn stug and find keyholes for your armor to support your attack. The stug can only be in one place at a time and you should easily outmatch him in armor quantity.

-It's always good to attack everywhere when playing Soviets in '43. You don't want to lock yourself into an attack lane that may be well covered by stugs. It's better to keep as many options available as possible. If you get locked down in one of you attack lanes, push somewhere else. Eventually he'll have to move to try and deal with you elsewhere.

-Always bring smoke. 81mm FO is best. It's a cinch to blind him.

-use Soviet 152mm assualt guns in pairs, and area target close to a stug. It will not take long for you to knock him silly.

-have plenty of scout cars available. If you're locked down by a stug, lead a forward rush with one of these vehicles as bait for the stug, giving you more time to rush your armor forward into better positions to deal with him. Likewise, you can rush the stug with suicide split squads and force him to engage, distracting him from your armor rush. Timing, combined arms, synergy.

-make sure you bring AT rifles. Keep him buttoned and you delay his reaction time. Sharpies are even better though I rarely spend points on them, when I can get 2.5 AT rifles for the cost of 1 sharpy.

I can think of so many more things but there's a start.

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Germans in 1941 - you kill T-34s and especially KVs with towed guns and hail fire. You kill all other Russian vehicles with anything with a 50mm front. You kill Russian infantry with large caliber HE, vehicle machineguns, and infantry heavy weapons (81mm mortars and HMGs). If you must wade into woods or town with Russian infantry, do it behind a wave of shells. And bring pioneers if you can. This is the only really hard period, and it is the KVs that are a real pain. If a gamey enemy doesn't take them all the time, you will do fine.

Germans in 1944 - buy 2 Panthers. Put them near the edges of the map, back corners if possible, facing slightly inwards. Bottomless pit covers one flank. Inward steep angle and the other Panther covers the other flank. Destroy all Russian armor. Hide a few 75mm ATGs to help and use them if the Russians try to mass against one or smoke its partner. Hide a 150mm sIG near the back of the map. Use 150mm div arty and TRPs. Some HMG-42s in trenches to pin stuff and shepherd the Russian infantry into areas of cover. Once they bunch, 150mm HE. Police up the parts if you feel it is necessary.

Now wait for the brilliant tacticians to come along and tell you how impossibly hard it is, when dumb people like us can do it in our sleep.

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Originally posted by Bigduke6:

Hey Redwolf, while I'm thinking about it, what about the L52/55 85mm gun? At 750 meters, would it punch or ping a Panther mantlet?

The Panther mantlet is rounded. If you hit it where the angle to the hit is 90 degrees it is actually easy to penetrate, depending on how much other junk is behind the point you hit.
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In game terms, the Russians 85mm is undermodeled in 1943, and can't get through a StuG front at 750m. Don't even think about taking on a Panther from the front with an SU-85 in 1943, therefore. You can't even duel StuGs frontally, and Tigers from the side you should consider long odds shots that must be delivered shoot and scoot to avoid killing replies.

The ammo improves - fewer shell broke up results etc - in 1944, and 80mm is no longer a problem. The Panther turret front and Tiger hull front still are. (The Tiger turret front remains essentially invulnerable). You can expect occasional partial pens at 500m, along with some deflections.

Enough T-34/85s (1944 and later obviously) dueling an outnumbered Panther with "hail fire", will kill it. One of them will get a damaging hit through the mantlet (the rare lower hull hit can sometimes work too). But it can be expensive, because the glacis hits will all bounce as so will some of the turret hits. Meanwhile the Panther's replies will be highly accurate and will kill.

3 to 1 with it facing you is not comfortable. Higher odds or 3 to 1 catching it unawares at the start of the duel (some side shots until it turns, if those miss the chance at the turret, etc), is OK. I've seen partials out to 800m or so, but 500m is a better range to expect regular penetrations.

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Don't look at the numbers, try to actually do it. Russian 85mm ammo in 1943 is modeled as particularly brittle and suffers shell broke up results reliably when it hits 80mm armor or more. In 1944, it will go in, but the fall 1943 stuff the first SU-85s have, sucks.

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