Jump to content

AT infantry

Recommended Posts

Put simply, I've got a unit of 9 German infantry hiding in a heavy building about 110m from a Sherman tank which is in plain view. The unit is armed with panzerfausts. How can I make sure the unit attacks the Sherman with the panzerfausts and not rifle fire?

I have no idea what the range of a panzerfaust is but it looks likely that the Sherman will close in yet further to possibly 30-50m.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

What's the range of a PF?
The following is everything I know about Panzerfaust use within Combat Mission.

A panzerfaust is a throw-away shaped charge (rocket-propelled grenade launcher) weapon that the German infantry (Soviets don't get any within CM) is armed with from 1943 onward.

Note: You cannot command your units to fire a Panzerfaust (the Tactical AI will decide whether or not to use the weapon). Also, you can't buy them, you have to hope the computer (or scenario designer) will randomly issue them to your squads.

There are three varieties:

• 30 meter range

• 60 meter range

• 100 meter range

Types available in the game:

Panzerfaust 30 (klein)

Panzerfaust 30

Panzerfaust 60

Panzerfaust 100

Date First Available: Jul43 (PF-30K), Sep43 (PF-30), and Oct44 (PF-60 and PF-100)

Maximum Range: Depends on type

Effective Range:  About 2/3 the distance of maximum range. The Panzerfaust's EFFECTIVE range is very different from it's MAXIMUM range maybe about 2/3 the distance. For a Panzerfaust 60 to be accurate, you should try to be at 40 meters or less distance.

Penetration: 200mm (7.87in)

A panzerfaust can take out any tank, even a JS II, although odds obviously decrease as armor gets thicker.

German Tank hunters become "extra dangerous" during 1944-1945 as they MAY have 2-3 Panzerfausts and are able to "target" armor, unlike squad infantry.

In my experience, Panzerfausts are not fired by the TacAI as often as I would like it to. I place a greater reliance on Panzershrecks to take out enemy armor. Often the German infantry are busy with Russian infantry and do not choose to shoot their Panzerfausts at the Russian tanks.

Panzerfausts create a back blast, so you should use them in the open such as woods or from a foxhole, or in urban terrain, in rubble.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Tac Com's reply is good info.

It is difficult to actually get a squad to target a tank. They usually will wait until they have a good shot. Firing fausts with their exhaust trail is a give-away to the location of the firing squad. Tanks usually pick up on it and blast the hell out of you. Best to wait until you have a kill shot... the closer the better.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Originally posted by Bannon DC:

Best to wait until you have a kill shot... the closer the better.

But ultimately that's for the little AI controlled squad member decide, right? All you can do is have your squad near an enemy vehicle and hope they shoot and score.

I found the panzershrek to be good fun. Fired from rubble it vaporized an allied halftrack.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

They will fire only if unsuppressed, and are most likely to do so if they have a covered arc and the target is within 2/3rds of the maximum range of the faust type. They are also more likely to fire it if they have more than one.

The way to get them to do it is to put on a 30m, 40m, or 65m covered arc, depending on the model PF they have.

If you need to move to reach those distances, the chances of a successful shot plummet, because it is likely the tank will see you and fire MGs at you. And a suppressed unit simply will not fire them.

The best move to reach faust range is "sneak", entirely within cover. While it is slow, you can typically cover 20m or so and fire without drawing fire, if the tank is buttoned, shooting at other stuff, you have reasonable cover, etc.

The next best way is to use advance or assault, ending in cover within the effective ranges, and using several squads. Some will be shot at and will fail to deliver theirs, but if you come at the beast from 3 sides one will often get a shot off.

Whereas infantry close assault, grenade bundles, and demo charges require about 30 seconds of uninterrupted unsuppressed time with the target within 30-35m, faust can be fired quickly once in range and shooter unsuppressed.

The other truly effective German infantry AT weapon - frequently found in tank hunters around midwar - is the panzerwurfmine. It is overmodeled, especially the accuracy but also the effect. They hit pretty much always out to distances of 40m or so and get "top attack" treatment, penetrating and usually KOing even the thickest vehicles. They are also throw readily, like fausts.

Rifle grenades will be fired out to 60-70 meters, but the accuracy is very low, and they only penetrate about 40mm of armor reliably. Occasionally you can take out a T-34 with a side shot. Again a short covered arc and unsuppressed (usually hidden) shooter is essential. Those have to make up in numbers fired for low accuracy. They typically fail to do so, as somebody sees the firer after 1-2 and suppresses him.

Magentic mines are also effective, but slow to "place", like grenade bundles and DCs. Marginally better, and better hit effect than the grenade bundles.

Russians get RPGs at midwar which are like the panzerwurfmine, overmodeled and highly effective. But only for their tank hunters, and only about 2/3rds of those, mid 1943 on. Before then the pioneers have DCs - 30m range and slow placement. Everyone else has molotovs, which are basically useless, due to extremely poor killing effect when they hit. In fact, a Russian squad has a much better chance if it has none.

Americans get rifle grenades in quantity, and some (airborne, engineers) get DCs or the equivalent.

All infantry can "close assault", which looks like throwing grenades. It takes 30 seconds unsuppressed and isn't always delivered even then (think hidden PAATC), can miss or "hit", and "hit" results frequently immobilize rather than kill. But it is effective. In practice this is typically delivered by several squads in cover surrounding the AFV, and 1-2 getting it off.

Compared to all of the above, the infantry AT teams will reliable fire at reasonable effective ranges and can use vehicle covered arcs. Schrecks are listed as 225m range but in practice miss far too often at those ranges. 70m is a better range if you need the first shot to kill. Shots out to 125-150m are possible, and will work if the shooter can get off his whole ammo load waiting for a hit.

Zooks and piats are similar in range, but against the better critters also need flank shots. They can also sometimes leave something to be desired in behind armor effect, therefore needing 2-3 penetrations to kill. On the plus side, the zook has 8 shots and the piat is a stealthier shooter.

ATRs can fire much farther and remain undetected while doing so. But they have poor penetration and worse behind armor effect. Multiple ATRs banging away for minutes on end will still hole light armor and halftracks. Against full AFVs they are strictly desparation weapons and typically need 100m range flat side shots to have a chance. And it is then low. They do usefully draw fire once spotted - all tankers have a very high priority to shoot at any kind of AT team.

The last effective infantry AT weapons that must be mentioned are the flame weapons other than the molotov. They are as overmodeled as it is undermodeled. Manpack FTs will reliably KO full AFVs if they can shoot them from ambush. The difficulty is usually just the range - 32m for the medium speed German models and 40-45m for the slower allied ones.

Last but not least, in the first two years of the war the Russians get a little item called the ampulet, a molotov cocktail throwing mortar, basically. It is overmodeled. Effective range is about 200m, accuracy quite high - just don't push the range all the way to the 250m theoretical listed, that far they will all miss.

It then reliably penetrates armor up to about 60mm, with good behind armor effect about half the time. (That is the unrealistic part). It thus is about as effective as a bazooka, at a time when German armor is still quite thin. Also stealthy as a shooter in the upper half of its range. Overmodeled but quite useful, if a bit gamey. Since the hand molotovs are so undermodeled, this somewhat makes up for it.

Last, a word on chasing AFVs in the open using the "follow vehicle" command and advance or assault orders. Don't. You will be spotted and hit by MG fire the minute you step into the open, and suppressed. And suppressed units will not deliver infantry AT attacks, regardless of what weapon they are carrying.

While a swarm by a whole company may occasionally pull it off, virtually always you will instead wind up with a pile of bodies and broken units and a happy AFV merrily backing away. Stealth, not numbers, delivers effective infantry AT attacks.

I hope this helps.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

With some(great amount usually)luck ATR's can save you. I was playing an operation against my friend. I played as Germans and he as Brits. I was defending a hill and he attack with lot's of tanks. My few eighty-eight's were able to hold of his advance for quite long time, but due my crappy supply situation(eighty-eight's ran out of ammo) he was able to get to the hill i was defending. My two tank hunter teams were dealing with one of his two Matildas(which they knock out but ran out of AT-weapons), while the another Matilda rumbled towards top of the hill. My troops didn't have any AT-weapons left expect one PzB39 ATR. This puny ATR kept firing and finally it destroyed the Matildas track! It got immobilized in to a position where it couldn't give cover fire for his attacking infantry. This heroic ATR saved me from defeat. I was able to conduct a counter-attack and regain lost my trenches.

Lesson of this story: Never underestimate ATR's

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I had an ATR delay an assualt of some 15 Shermans and Lees. I laughed when I saw it in the OOB - even more as it was elite. Just planned it to use as a scout in a position with good LOS - which means good field of fire, too.

IIRC it killed a Stuart and penetrated the side of a Lee, threatening to harm more of his tanks. In their turret down positions vs my tanks they were ready to move into hull down. As the opposing armor was not supported by infantry, his tanks fired everything they had in the general direction - plus some light arty barrage. This took quite a while - until I had reinforced that flank.

In the above situation, my opponent would have won the flank and the battle if he had just ignored the ATR. Even if it had killed another tank, a massive but slow attack would have overrun my flank.

The keys for AT teams are stealth - and fear. But the fear is not rational.

It is annoying to loose a tank to a crappy AT team. We fear that "humilation", don't want it to happen - and make bigger errors just to avoid a small one. The appearance (or worse: the effects of an AT team without being able to spot it) make us nervous - just like buttoned tankers getting pinged with small arms fire. How many of us make rational decisions in this situation?

Keep this in mind when using AT teams - and when encountering them.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Unfortunately, your content contains terms that we do not allow. Please edit your content to remove the highlighted words below.
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

  • Create New...