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I HATE CAS!


Lt. Badger
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CAS and it's implementation have been discused in great detail on this board or ready so I won't rehash but:

The game does not depict directed CAS from TAC-Ps or even FACs. It's the kind fo CAS most often depicted in the battle area, the kind that the company or battalion commander has absolutely no control over. The reasons for this have been discussed elsewhere.

What's obvious to you on the ground is clearly not obvious to pilot overhead speeding along trying to avoid ground fire, looking out for enemy fighters, trying to read a map, figure out who's who, or just out on a lark trying to beat up some ground targets. Even today with all the control measures and technology in place, under close direction, accidents still happen. (I myself was nearly killed in an erroneous strafing run from an F18 a year and a half ago) It's very easy given pilot task saturation in combat even in WW2 that getting misoriented, or misidentifying targets was a common occurance.

To me there is absoultely nothing wrong with getting the occasional bad CAS atatck no matter how frustrating it is at the time. It happens in real battle. It's just another event that have to take into account.

Los

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Originally posted by redwolf:

There are a few obvious optimizations to make:

1a) shooting a friendly tank when both sides have tanks and are mangled in a meeting engagement? - Fine

1b) shooting an attacking tank when the defender has no vehicles? - Not fine, at least not often

2a) on a run, choosing the best of multiple targets and bomb it? - Fine

2b) on a run, dropping your bombs even if no valuable targets are in sight, bombing a half-squad in lack of better targets? - Not realistic. Circle and when no valuable targets are exposed after a period of time, go home.

3a) planes attacking when and where they please? - Fine

3b) a commanding officer of a battalion+ force not even being able to say "skip the planned attack" or "wait a few minutes"? - Only occasionally fine

Variants of 1b):

- shooting guns facing the enemy side? Not fine

- in an attack, shooting infantry that slowly moves towards the direction where the enemy line is? Not fine

Variants of 1a):

- shooting vehicles or infantry behind the enemy line? Fine

- missing your target and bomb nothing? Fine

Yes, of course none of these things ever happen in a real war. Especially when the USAF (pardon the anachronism) is involved.

Kitty

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Originally posted by redwolf:

There are a few obvious optimizations to make:

1a) shooting a friendly tank when both sides have tanks and are mangled in a meeting engagement? - Fine

1b) shooting an attacking tank when the defender has no vehicles? - Not fine, at least not often

How does the pilot know there are no enemy tanks?

2a) on a run, choosing the best of multiple targets and bomb it? - Fine

2b) on a run, dropping your bombs even if no valuable targets are in sight, bombing a half-squad in lack of better targets? - Not realistic. Circle and when no valuable targets are exposed after a period of time, go home.

You can go land an aircraft with a great big bloody bomb underneath it , but I'm buggered if I will!

3a) planes attacking when and where they please? - Fine

3b) a commanding officer of a battalion+ force not even being able to say "skip the planned attack" or "wait a few minutes"? - Only occasionally fine

Only after FAC's were introduced, does anyone know when the employment of FAC's became commonplace?
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Originally posted by Speedy:

</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by redwolf:

There are a few obvious optimizations to make:

1a) shooting a friendly tank when both sides have tanks and are mangled in a meeting engagement? - Fine

1b) shooting an attacking tank when the defender has no vehicles? - Not fine, at least not often

How does the pilot know there are no enemy tanks?

2a) on a run, choosing the best of multiple targets and bomb it? - Fine

2b) on a run, dropping your bombs even if no valuable targets are in sight, bombing a half-squad in lack of better targets? - Not realistic. Circle and when no valuable targets are exposed after a period of time, go home.

You can go land an aircraft with a great big bloody bomb underneath it , but I'm buggered if I will!

3a) planes attacking when and where they please? - Fine

3b) a commanding officer of a battalion+ force not even being able to say "skip the planned attack" or "wait a few minutes"? - Only occasionally fine

Only after FAC's were introduced, does anyone know when the employment of FAC's became commonplace? </font>
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Originally posted by GreenAsJade:

But in all seriousness, I really do wonder why designers put CAS into their scenarios.

It is clearly an element of pure randomness... I can't really see how that adds value to a tactical game.

In historic scenarios, sure. If you are trying to simulate the confusion and frustration felt by troops under friendly fire, then do that.

But other than that, it seems like a pointless addition to a scenario: you can't plan anything based on it, and you can have the best plan working well only to be wiped out by it...

GaJ.

CAS works very well at higher experience levels. I use it all the time and it depends on how well it performed in the original battle as to how effective I make it in my scenario. You can make them deadly to the enemy or to anybody depending on what their experience level is. If I give you Stukas with Elite crews the Brits better watch out. If I give you crews of less than Veteran quality you better watch out.

Simple as that. smile.gif

Panther Commander

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If you read my message carefully you would have spotted that I don't call for an elimination of friendly fire in CAS.

What I would like to see is to make it more or less probable in the circumstances I describe.

For example, a CAS pilot sent to support an attack will have a briefing whether the defender is expected to have tanks. If he is told not then he will be less likely to fire on friendly tanks. Do I say he will never? No. But less likely it is.

Same for moving infantry: if CM CAS support show up before the defender reveals himself, then the plane is likely to shoot at advancing soldiers. In reality it is unlikely (not impossible) that a CAS pilot in Normandy would shoot up infantry moving north-south at walking speed and neither firing at the plane nor taking cover from it.

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In scenario design, I think CAS should be an optional flag ("Do you want Air Support? [YES] [NO]") since it is indeed random. The whole point of buying a CAS in a QB is to take a gamble. I'm not aware of how easy it was in real life to tell a CAS force to back off before a battle, but having no control over wether or not you want your own artillery to be in use is a little horrifying when it attacks you. I think it would be better if it showed what plane / skill it was (regulars and below CAS almost always make a mistake or miss unless lucky, however Vets or higher are gauranteed success or damages unless fired upon) with an option to not use it. If the enemy uses his, so be it.

However, saying CAS detracts from the 'fun' because its random is seriously weak. If it's in a historical scenario it's obviously there for a reason, but thats besides the point. If you can't handle taking care of a situation that arises at chance, then maybe CM isn't for you, because CM is filled with chances, risks and most importantly random factors. It's like saying bogging down should be eliminated from the game because its random - I didn't know my tiger would get bogged in damp weather on a road, so there goes my fun? I couldn't do anything about it. I used my rockets and one just landed right on top of my Battallion HQ, killing everyone. Etc, etc. This game is full of situations and problems that you need to look at, and CAS is just another one that is a little tougher than the rest, possibly even more frustrating.

When it comes to CAS realism, some things maybe need adjustment, but I believe CAS is an important tool for both QB's and Scenarios.

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Originally posted by btm:

</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />

Originally posted by Matthias:

If the RAF showed up the germans hide

If the luffewaffer showed up the Allies hide

If the usaf showed up both teh allies and the germans hide

hehe its a funny joke but true....

Horsesh1t.

The U.S. Army and U.S. Army Air Corps were able to develop the most advanced system of close air support that the world had ever seen to that point in time.

Granted this took time, and the system was not perfect, but it was extremely valuable and effective.

Try reading any of the following books to educate yourselves:

Patton's Air Force: Forging a Legendary Air-Ground Team by David Spires

Angels Zero: P-47 Close Air Support in Europe by Robert Bulle

Tactical Air Interdiction by the USAAF in WW2 (Series) by Col. Dupuy </font>

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Originally posted by Hun Hunter:

</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by btm:

</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />

Originally posted by Matthias:

If the RAF showed up the germans hide

If the luffewaffer showed up the Allies hide

If the usaf showed up both teh allies and the germans hide

hehe its a funny joke but true....

Horsesh1t.

The U.S. Army and U.S. Army Air Corps were able to develop the most advanced system of close air support that the world had ever seen to that point in time.

Granted this took time, and the system was not perfect, but it was extremely valuable and effective.

Try reading any of the following books to educate yourselves:

Patton's Air Force: Forging a Legendary Air-Ground Team by David Spires

Angels Zero: P-47 Close Air Support in Europe by Robert Bulle

Tactical Air Interdiction by the USAAF in WW2 (Series) by Col. Dupuy </font>

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A quick look through a few of my books produced these gems:

From An Army at Dawn (pg 201 in the paperback version)...

"On the rare occasions when allied planes dominated the skies, fratricide added to the ground troop's torment. Word soon spread of an incident near Medjez-el-Bab, where a company of American tank destroyers was helping to secure the town on Thanksgiving when eleven U.S. P-38 Lightnings flew over. Jubilant at the unexpected help from friendly fighters, the tank destroyer crews raced across the open terrain, waving and smiling. Built with twin fuselages, the P-38s languidly circled until the sun was behind them, then dropped to fifty feet and executed five textbook strafing runs in three minutes.

The attack all but destroyed the shocked company, which fired not a single retaliatory shot. Five men were killed - including the unit's only World War I veteran- and sixteen wounded; nearly every vehicle and antitank weapon was destroyed or damaged. One outraged company commander in the 1st Armored Divison ordered his men to shoot any airborne object larger than a goose. And another bromide circulated among American soldiers: "If it flies, it dies.""

So the Army Air Corps pretty much destroyed an entire company that was in action.

And this interesting bit from The Rock of Anzio (History of the 45th Infantry Division) (these incidents were in Sicily);

"Contact with the retreating Germans was again lost on October 1, but the 45th didn't need Germans to suffer casualties. The 179th was strafed by American P-51s, resulting in one man killed, one wounded and three trucks destroyed." (Okay technically this would not have been a CAS mission in CMAK term as they apparently wern't even in contact with the enemy!)

These were just two incidents of many. While they are anecdotal it is obvious that the problem of friendly fire from the US Army Air Corp was a very serious problem, especially earlier in the war.

From reading these and numerous other similiar incidents CMAK CAS should perhaps only change in these ways:

1. All units/sides would defend themselves against air attack even if the aircraft are "friendlies".

2. All ground units should have a chance of misidentifying air units and shooting at them (or not shooting if the misidentify enemy as friendly).

3. Maybe let the Axis player buy conscript American air support for the American player, expecially in 42-43. :D

Greg

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Originally posted by Speedy:

</font><blockquote>quote:</font><hr />Originally posted by redwolf:

3b) a commanding officer of a battalion+ force not even being able to say "skip the planned attack" or "wait a few minutes"? - Only occasionally fine

Only after FAC's were introduced, does anyone know when the employment of FAC's became commonplace? </font>
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Friendly fire from the air is realistic. What isn't, is the high accuracy and damaging effect of typical CM air attacks. Note the P-38 incident, for example. 11 FBs attacked 5 times. 5 men were killed and 16 wounded. Try that in CM. You will get that score from 1 FB. Heck, I've seen 2 FBs knock out half a dozen tanks (including strafing immobilizations that bailed out when strafed again) - not halftracks without tops or unarmored trucks, but full tanks.

If typical air to ground sorties did as much in the real deal as they do in CM, CAS would have won the war singlehanded. The whole ground war would have been a side show. Think I am exaggerating? By 1944 the western allies flew several thousands sorties per day over Europe, which means on the order of 50k sorties per month. German KIA ran about 50k per month, all fronts combined.

The average ground attack flat missed. In CM this is rather rare.

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I don't like CAS. I think it should be used very sparingly in large scenarios only. Perhaps JasonC hit the nail on the head. CAS in CM is just too deadly.

I think the planes detract from gameplay even though it's fun to watch the fireworks. The luck element is just too much for a thinking person's game. CAS may be realistic, and it may even be modeled in a realistic way; but it should be treated like the huge arty, rarely seen, as a concession to gameplay.

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Originally posted by Treeburst155:

Perhaps JasonC hit the nail on the head. CAS in CM is just too deadly.

I hadn't thought of it this way before, but you're both right. Not only is it extremely hard to identify anything from the air, it's also hard to hit it. Most shells, rockets, and bombs went everywhere but on the target. It could be devastating if it did hit, but mostly it was only suppressive.

...it should be treated like the huge arty, rarely seen, as a concession to gameplay.
And because it was relatively rarely seen on the front as depicted in CM. Most of tacair's work was done over the CM horizon.

Michael

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2b) on a run, dropping your bombs even if no valuable targets are in sight, bombing a half-squad in lack of better targets? - Not realistic. Circle and when no valuable targets are exposed after a period of time, go home.
You'd be suprised how realistic it is for pilots to bomb the first target in their sights, even if that's a worthless target.... For several reasons.

One could be simple fear. Drop your stuff and get out of there(back to base and grab a beer instead of taking flak)!

Another is, he doesn't KNOW that the target is worthless. You're flying by in a cabin at a very high speed trying to detect people who are activly trying to remain undetected. Gee, forgive him for not knowing exact troopsize, value and morale of the troops that he's trying to bomb.

For me CAS has been a very positive experience. In the Descent on Malene scenario I only lost 2 squads to friendly bombs(they were trying to overrun an AA position that got bombed).

He on the other hand lost several guns, several bren carriers(and at least 1 ATG carrier) and quite alot of troops. All thanks to airsupport.

Not to mention that the airsupport eased my attack on Pirgos by blasting several buildings to rubble(it made my attack alot easier)

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The original intent of the thread was to question if designers should incorporate air power into scenarios. Looks like people dislike how airpower is executed in the game rather than

the random nature of the results. As someone said, once you start up CM you are in for random results. I think people want more control. For example, if my Tiger bogs I can at least blame it on me taking of the road into a damp field.

If the arty falls short, well I understand the turns are running out and I had to take the risk. How to provide control without making it unrealistic and gamey is open for debate. How about "phase lines" where CAS will only strike in "boxes" for a certain window of turns. Perhaps phase lines would only be available if the airpower is "regular" or better.

Kevin

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Originally posted by JasonC:

Friendly fire from the air is realistic. What isn't, is the high accuracy and damaging effect of typical CM air attacks. Note the P-38 incident, for example. 11 FBs attacked 5 times. 5 men were killed and 16 wounded. Try that in CM. You will get that score from 1 FB. Heck, I've seen 2 FBs knock out half a dozen tanks (including strafing immobilizations that bailed out when strafed again) - not halftracks without tops or unarmored trucks, but full tanks.

If typical air to ground sorties did as much in the real deal as they do in CM, CAS would have won the war singlehanded. The whole ground war would have been a side show. Think I am exaggerating? By 1944 the western allies flew several thousands sorties per day over Europe, which means on the order of 50k sorties per month. German KIA ran about 50k per month, all fronts combined.

The average ground attack flat missed. In CM this is rather rare.

I agree 100% about the leathality of CM CAS but in the P-38 attack note that they did manage to damage/destroy most of the companies vehicles/AT assets. That would have probably meant 2-3 per plane average, not out of line with many CM results. Perhaps the low # of personnel casualties was due to the fact that it seems most of the company were out of their vehicles waving at the planes :eek:

But as I said Jason, I think you're right, they do seem to be way to accurate. Of course who would pay several hundred points for an asset that could be (is?) such a double-edged sword. Any changes like that and the point cost would, in my opinion, need to be adjusted, perhaps drastically. I'm sure the commander of the tank destroyer units felt he wasted his points on 11 P-38s! :D

Greg

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