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All Forums >> [Current Games From Matrix.] >> [World War II] >> War In The Pacific - Struggle Against Japan 1941 - 1945 >> Scenario Design >> Tank Armor Page: [1]
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Tank Armor - 6/29/2006 1:08:35 PM   
el cid again

 

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It was my impression that WITP uses maximum armor thickness. I have interpreted this to mean frontal armor for AFVs. Often - but not always - this is the same as turret armor. Sometimes an AFV has no turret at all.
And if it does have a turret, the area of the front is larger - so more likely to be hit - than that of the turret.

Reviewing data for the M4 Tank (105mm Howitzer) - I discovered the astonishing thing that maximum frontal armor is only 2 inches. The 76 mm used in CHS must refer to turret armor. That is probably not the intended value in the game - and in any case it is not consistent with the data I have used for the other side. Japanese AFVs may have paper thin armor - but if we allow them to use turret armor - the gun tanks will have a greatly exaggerated value in combat. [Gun tanks are light AFVs with heavy guns mounted - either in turrets - or even sort of assault gun like - in fixed mountings with limited traverse - either way with much more armor than the hull on which they are mounted. This does not produce a combat effective tank and I am reluctant to go with such values.]

Based on my official materials from Aberdeen Prooving Grounds I am about to reduce ALL Sherman tanks to two inches of armor. And I am going to review the other Allied tanks to insure they too don't use turret armor. Any problems with this should be stated in this thread. Similarly, any clearer understanding of what the game system intends to use should be stated here.
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RE: Tank Armor - 6/29/2006 10:34:32 PM   
Lemurs!


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I tried to account for frontal slope as well in armour calc.
For all of the criticism levelled at the M4 it had excellent frontal armour slope near as good as a T34.

Mike


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RE: Tank Armor - 6/30/2006 2:01:03 AM   
JeffK


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Take into efect the slope and distribution of Armour, the advantage the T34 had was better sloped armour.

I also beleive, as posted on another thread, that the armour rating should be an average of front, side, rear & mantlet armour. (Maybe weighted to certain areas)Not all AT gunners could always hit the vulnerable, or inpenetrable, spots on a charging Tank.

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RE: Tank Armor - 6/30/2006 2:26:28 AM   
Lemurs!


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The problem with blanket changes like this is we do not know what effect ratings mean for AT weapons. Rating '6'. What is that? Is that at 100 yards? 100 feet? 1000 yards?

Big changes are dangerous without having a large staff to track effect. I have not noticed a problem with tank losses in game anyway, so why fix what isn't broken?

Mike


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RE: Tank Armor - 7/1/2006 5:33:56 AM   
spence

 

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I played around with some tank to tank combat using the 1945 Scenario. T34s and JSU152s getting knocked out by 37mm guns on Japanese tanks seemed kind of unlikely but Japanese tank regiments consistently held their own against soviet tank brigades (1/3 mech corps) in both attack and defense.

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RE: Tank Armor - 7/1/2006 6:39:57 AM   
m10bob


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Try this Sid:

http://www.panzerworld.net/armourcalculator.html

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RE: Tank Armor - 7/1/2006 1:16:24 PM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Lemurs!

I tried to account for frontal slope as well in armour calc.
For all of the criticism levelled at the M4 it had excellent frontal armour slope near as good as a T34.

Mike



This is true - and it is offered in the Aberdeen data as "armor basis" - a calculation of "effective" thickness. Unfortunately:

1) We don't have similar data to the same standard for all nations

2) The Aberdeen data is not a value - but a range! Apparently it depends on just where you hit - and that makes sense - as the metal is not always at the same angle.

So I don't see how to use this data? But I am listening to any ideas out there.

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RE: Tank Armor - 7/1/2006 1:17:43 PM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: JeffK

Take into efect the slope and distribution of Armour, the advantage the T34 had was better sloped armour.

I also beleive, as posted on another thread, that the armour rating should be an average of front, side, rear & mantlet armour. (Maybe weighted to certain areas)Not all AT gunners could always hit the vulnerable, or inpenetrable, spots on a charging Tank.


This is simply untrue in all scenarios - no one is using such a function.
It would result in much LESS a value than the frontal armor - instead of MORE - as in this case.

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RE: Tank Armor - 7/1/2006 1:24:35 PM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Lemurs!

The problem with blanket changes like this is we do not know what effect ratings mean for AT weapons. Rating '6'. What is that? Is that at 100 yards? 100 feet? 1000 yards?

Big changes are dangerous without having a large staff to track effect. I have not noticed a problem with tank losses in game anyway, so why fix what isn't broken?

Mike



You have this backwards: NOT having ALL vehicles to the SAME standard is a big problem - PRESENT TENSE. ANY data set using the same data standard will give more correct values - regardless of how the data is used - than one using dissimilar standards.

However, I can answer the question of what the game is up to. It is clear from the data set that they are using the standard algorithm that a high velocity gun (in the range of 2700 fps) penetrates 1.75 times caliber at point blank range. Since ranges are given for tanks in the range of 1, 2 and 3, and for artillery in ranges like 6 and 11 and 17, it is clear that range is in thousands of yards - and no doubt point blank range is the one case (meaning 1000 yards or less - and on a statistical average basis - 500 yards). Many values are correct - although as with everything in WITP many are not - but enough to be sure this is the base algorithm OR that they are using real data for which this algorithm is a reasonable approximation.

Armor is a complex issue - and clearly we need some simple rule. A composite figure is probably best - but in my view it is not an average - it is an average of the armor thickness proportional to the area - and one could go one step further and use statistics about the chance of a frontal shot etc. Similarly, I have no problem using "armor basis" (angle of the armor) data - IF you give it to me to a UNIFORM standard for ALL nations of interest.

The game design - using the frontal armor - is probably a reasonable simplification. You do tend to shoot at the front. And this designer loves die rolls - so some of his rolls will represent side hits - rear hits - etc.


< Message edited by el cid again -- 7/1/2006 1:26:31 PM >

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RE: Tank Armor - 7/1/2006 1:28:51 PM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: spence

I played around with some tank to tank combat using the 1945 Scenario. T34s and JSU152s getting knocked out by 37mm guns on Japanese tanks seemed kind of unlikely but Japanese tank regiments consistently held their own against soviet tank brigades (1/3 mech corps) in both attack and defense.



That seems quite wrong. The only case of a major tank battle between Japanese and Allied forces - on Luzon - never allowed the Japanese a single shot! We simply never permitted them in range. An awful battle it was - from the Japanese point of view. But it MAY imply we were afraid of low velocity 57mm and high velocity 47mm guns! Tanks are a lot more vulnerable than people think - and their battlefield impact is as much psychological as physical. Soldiers don't behave the same when the enemy has a tank - any tank!

< Message edited by el cid again -- 7/1/2006 1:29:32 PM >

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RE: Tank Armor - 7/2/2006 2:59:44 AM   
Lemurs!


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El Cid, I don't think i had it backwards, but i agree with your point, you took it further than i had.
I have not put as much of my time into the anti armour aspects of this game because it is such a small portion of the game. One thing i think needs a major rework is the Japanese 37mm gun should not bew capable of penetrating anything bigger than a Stuart. And then only on rare occasions.

One of the problems is how does this work into infantry anti armour values. Infantry has been shown to have no effect versus armour no matter what rockets it is equipped with in open terrain. However, in closed terrain infantry with no specific anti armour weapons manages to regularly knock out tanks.

Mike


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RE: Tank Armor - 7/2/2006 6:21:40 AM   
spence

 

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quote:

That seems quite wrong. The only case of a major tank battle between Japanese and Allied forces - on Luzon - never allowed the Japanese a single shot! We simply never permitted them in range. An awful battle it was - from the Japanese point of view. But it MAY imply we were afraid of low velocity 57mm and high velocity 47mm guns! Tanks are a lot more vulnerable than people think - and their battlefield impact is as much psychological as physical. Soldiers don't behave the same when the enemy has a tank - any tank!


I am just reporting the results of about 5 run throughs of a fight which I arranged between Soviet and Japanese Armored forces balanced so that the numbers of tanks/SPGs, guns, and infantry squads were pretty much the same on each side in open terrain in Manchuria (kind of a pain in the tail to conduct a test with this game isn't it?). I allowed a variable number of air raids on OTHER UNINVOLVED units just to make the random number generator work a different number ot times. The Japanese did just fine. In fact they achieved 1:1 odds when they attacked but the poor Russkis only got 0:1.

Note: commanders, experience and fatigue were edited before the start to be the same but movement may have messed up those numbers some.

< Message edited by spence -- 7/2/2006 6:22:21 AM >

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RE: Tank Armor - 7/2/2006 3:04:06 PM   
el cid again

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Lemurs!

El Cid, I don't think i had it backwards, but i agree with your point, you took it further than i had.
I have not put as much of my time into the anti armour aspects of this game because it is such a small portion of the game. One thing i think needs a major rework is the Japanese 37mm gun should not bew capable of penetrating anything bigger than a Stuart. And then only on rare occasions.

First, a disclaimer: While there is only one 37mm gun in the game, IJA used no less than three different ones! Worse, the first and most numerous of these is a trench gun (think WWI trench warfare) - and not designed for AT use in the first place. [We have a battery of four of a US gun of the same vintage in my regiment - it is run by artillerymen and they are very proud of them - and similar weapons were used at Wounded Knee]. The second is the German PAK 38 - bought in small numbers. The third is a native and proper ATG - a typical bit of Japanese engineering using elements of several guns. So when we talk about a 37mm gun in Japanese service - we probably are talking about this weapon - but in fact it is not at all clear we are.

Second - there are a vast range of anti tank weapons and tactics NOT represented - and IJA may have led the world in these in WWII. It was the very first army to put an anti-tank team in every line infantry squad.
These teams would go hunting at night - when the tanks were unmanned -
in an era when US troops feared the night and did not attempt to engage - as a general rule. I do not have a good sense of how to deal with these weapons and tactics - but it is clear that they were a good deal more than nothing: often troops went to extreme measures to protect the tanks. For example, by midwar, US tanks were covered with wood! In spite of the adverse effect on heat dissipation and visibility! Because magnetic weapons were apparently more of a threat than either heat exhaustion or limiting visibility. But to the degree I have ideas about this, they lie down the road of "rate the few AT weapons slightly too high" to incorporate them.

Now - experience in the field indicated that 37mm guns were no longer effective in early WWII - no doubt about that. But that should not be taken to mean that it was wholly useless either. What happens is a function of range, target aspect, target armor at the point of impact, angle of impact, and shell ballistics. And the "bigger tanks" do not seem to have had anything like modern armor - either in composition or in quantity. I am astonished at the actual armor of the M4 - which was a highly regarded "medium" tank. The late war Japanese tank - the last production tank fielded by IJA - actually had about 10mm MORE frontal armor! [Not the way we usually think about Japanese tanks in comparison to Shermans]. Yet at point blank range a 37mm high velocity gun (firing 900 meters per second) can penetrate about 5 mm MORE armor than the Japanese tank I am thinking of - and about 15 MORE than a Sherman (assuming a normal angle hit - no effect for angle here). I admit that in practice it would be very unlikely ever to happen you would get a normal hit on sloped armor - but even so - you can see the weapon is more in the game than is usually understood.

One of the problems is how does this work into infantry anti armour values. Infantry has been shown to have no effect versus armour no matter what rockets it is equipped with in open terrain. However, in closed terrain infantry with no specific anti armour weapons manages to regularly knock out tanks.

I am confused by your remarks here? Are you talking about real life or the game system? I am not sure we know how the game works? And in real life you do not want to be moving with tanks in sight of good rockets - today at amazingly long ranges. But perhaps you mean "unguided WWII era rockets"??? The Israelis learned this lesson the hard way in the first attacks on Egyptians across the Canal - Russian AT rockets were much more effective than believed possible - and in wholly open terrain. I think a tank is a death trap - and I would not willingly sit in one - or stand beside one - on a battlefield - in any ear. Tanks attract enemy weapons - and they are noisy - and lots of things are dangerous to them - infantry probably much more than is realized. In 1956 Hungarians were able to kill 2000 tanks - almost entirely without soldiers or AT weapons - nice big modern tanks. They got it down to a science - "how much gas do you have in your car ? OK - that equals x tanks - lets divide it up"

Mike



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RE: Tank Armor - 7/2/2006 3:06:40 PM   
el cid again

 

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Spence - I completely agree with your comments about how hard it is to test in this system. I don't think we know enough to test land combat - and I am skeptical the system is properly designed? One person with over 10,000 turns experience thinks it cannot be. But I believe this is going to be fixed soon. Of course, I am a religious man...

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RE: Tank Armor - 7/3/2006 9:57:34 AM   
AlaskanWarrior


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quote:

ORIGINAL: el cid again

Spence - I completely agree with your comments about how hard it is to test in this system. I don't think we know enough to test land combat - and I am skeptical the system is properly designed? One person with over 10,000 turns experience thinks it cannot be. But I believe this is going to be fixed soon. Of course, I am a religious man...


What I don not understand is why it took 10,000 turns to figure out this game was fantasy..

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RE: Tank Armor - 7/3/2006 10:04:49 AM   
AlaskanWarrior


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Lemurs!

El Cid, I don't think i had it backwards, but i agree with your point, you took it further than i had.
I have not put as much of my time into the anti armour aspects of this game because it is such a small portion of the game. One thing i think needs a major rework is the Japanese 37mm gun should not bew capable of penetrating anything bigger than a Stuart. And then only on rare occasions.

One of the problems is how does this work into infantry anti armour values. Infantry has been shown to have no effect versus armour no matter what rockets it is equipped with in open terrain. However, in closed terrain infantry with no specific anti armour weapons manages to regularly knock out tanks.

Mike



Yeah, well just how do you numerically equate tactical squad level into a strategic game??? And a 37mm ATG can sure mission kill most tanks by disableing the tracks and hard kill by penetrating the sides or rear armor which is significantly thinner. By the way, this is just no endemic to WITP but is a problem that has haunted many other operational/stratrgic games.

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RE: Tank Armor - 7/3/2006 10:17:25 AM   
el cid again

 

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For all its problems, I think WITP is remarkable. I would not have attempted some of the detail in a strategic level game it not only attempts, but accomplishes.

Also, I fully support the same hex combat system. It has significant technical advantages for naval and air operations. And it was very hard to design a same hex combat system for land that works. I managed to do that last year - with help from a professional game designer/developer - and having done so I can say - done right you will find it ALSO has real advantages over adjacent hex land combat. The solution turned out to be so simple it won't be hard to adapt - and simple things that work tend to get used. But having had real trouble getting it right causes great sympathy for anyone else trying to do it. In WITP it was probably third fiddle - not much effort spent - so I can see how it was not done terribly well.

The "solution" here is going to consist of several different elements:

1) We need clear definitions for the data in terms the code expects - so we can feed it consistent data instead of the horrible mixed bag we have now;

2) We need to address the problem of "ignoring the line" - which is the biggest technical issue with same hex land combat. Turns out this can be more easily fixed in a computer game than a mechanical one - it is a simple line of communications test - and you can't break the rule except in special cases.

3) We need to insure we are using something like Dupuy's system for determining combat power in a situation. We have all the elements here - morale even - terrain - firepower measures - numbers - it should be possible to come up with rational odds given this is in the system.

4) We probably should add what I call CPR - Combat Proficiency Rating.
That way Chinese troops do not get counted as equal to American troops (say) - when they have the same weapons. Giving each army (or better unit) a CPR rating goes a long way to making the model make sense.

(in reply to AlaskanWarrior)
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