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How to coordinate attacks?

 
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How to coordinate attacks? - 3/8/2012 5:21:14 PM   
raskil

 

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Joined: 3/8/2012
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Hi,

I'm quite new to the game and I'm trying to beat the tutorial with the infos provided in the video tutorial.
I'm getting very frustrated because it seems to be hard to coordinate attacks because I've not found a way to calculate reorg times for my forces. If I tell them to attack at a given time, they will start re-orging at this time but the attack will begin later. If I find the corre correct values for attack time via trial and error, all works find until the next attack. Ist the re-org time variable? If so, how is it calculated? Is there a way to better coordinate attacks, so that all attack groups will hit the enemy at roughly the same time?

Kind Regards


Raskil
Post #: 1
RE: How to coordinate attacks? - 3/8/2012 7:11:33 PM   
Lieste

 

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You can either leave coordination to your subordinates (commanding at a higher level and hoping that competent commanders will employ your troops appropriately, attempt to massage several independent attacks into a coherent whole, or plan each attack to be a self-supporting as possible, with mutual support and isolation of the field by presence rather than coordination.

Given the desire to 'control' where my forces are operating (the AI sometimes having a hazy idea at best of the FLOT and the necessity to maintain his LOC), the difficulty in predicting each element's movement 6-10 hours hence in conditions of variations in terrain and mobility, enemy presence and fires, and the needs of the tactical situation... I tend to usually rule out the former two methods, relying on limiting the size of the local battlefield and then operating with mutual support by presence and fires rather than formal co-ordinations.

Some effort is made to account for foot vs mounted travel speeds (selecting the shorter route for foot troops, but not at the expense of greater exposure to spotting and fires), ensuring that start times are somewhat staggered to allow the units with most ground to make up to start slightly earlier, and otherwise arranging route distances to give both flanks and centre similar distances to make up - I also try to avoid excessively long movements in a single order if coordination is an issue - better to move to positions, and then attack from the halt than to find elements thrown into action against a superior force without their supports present (or deployed/ammunitioned if artillery).

Keep the overall plan simple where possible - avoid complex schemes that rely on particular events/ground truths... a 'worse' plan that has some excess capacity is usually a better initial attack - bold commitment of reserves and the second echelon is encouraged though, so long as the reserve is regrouped from whatever troops are undercommitted as soon as feasible.

(in reply to raskil)
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RE: How to coordinate attacks? - 3/8/2012 7:50:15 PM   
henri51


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One of the tutorial videos clearly shows how to coordinate attacks between units traveling at different speeds and starting from different distances from the objective. Check it out.

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RE: How to coordinate attacks? - 3/9/2012 12:18:37 AM   
Lieste

 

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Even where you can coordinate a movement adequately, I'd still caution against relying on this coordination... far better to plan several independent actions that by mutual support protect and enhance each other's success (eg by blocking access to resupply or retreat, or delaying the arrival of enemy reserves). If each is likely to obtain some success by their basic planning, then the overall result may be overwhelming even without strict co-ordinations.

Operations that depend on others for their success however are far more likely to have difficulties when inevitable delays or setbacks occur.


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RE: How to coordinate attacks? - 3/9/2012 11:44:07 PM   
henri51


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quote:

ORIGINAL: Lieste

Even where you can coordinate a movement adequately, I'd still caution against relying on this coordination... far better to plan several independent actions that by mutual support protect and enhance each other's success (eg by blocking access to resupply or retreat, or delaying the arrival of enemy reserves). If each is likely to obtain some success by their basic planning, then the overall result may be overwhelming even without strict co-ordinations.

Operations that depend on others for their success however are far more likely to have difficulties when inevitable delays or setbacks occur.




An expert player will usually obtain better results if he micromanages everything, but note that this is highly unrealistic. Although some leaders were known for leading from the front, it is simply not possible for a Division commander to personally control every platoon in his division during an operation. But as shown in the video tutorials (for example sending an armored unit to the hill to interdict German units across the river from coming to help at the crossing), it is sometimes wise to break out a few platoons for a specific purpose.

In addition, not all Battalion and company commanders were Pattons and Rommels, which the delegation process reflects well. This game is designed to simulate command at the Battalion and above levels, which is how it should be played. Having said this, to each his own...

Personally I think that the game could be improved by adding an adjustable "quality" to battalion commanders and above. It would be interesting in some scenarios to see what would have happened in the BoTB if for example, a Rommel had been commanding the Battle of the Bulge and/or some Dumbo (i.e. the Commander in Band of Brothers who couldn't read a map) had been commanding Patton's Third Army. Or how about if Maxwell Taylor or "Sean Connery" had planned Operation Market Garden instead of Montgomery?

While I am at it, another fun modification in a future game would be to program in the "doctrine" of the various armies. For example, the German officers were trained to exercise latitude to interpret their orders to adapt to changing situations, whereas other armies were mostly less flexible. (The German doctrine was studied and used by the US Marine Corps after WW2).

Henri

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RE: How to coordinate attacks? - 4/5/2012 2:51:12 AM   
rfrizz


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This is an old thread, but something Patton said about command is worth considering.

His position was rather simple: A commander should give orders to his direct subordinates, know where his subordinate's units are, but not concern himself with the status of units below that level; he should NOT give orders to his subordinate's subordinates.

Using a US Army rifle battalion as an example... The battalion commander should give orders to his company commanders, know where the platoons of each companies are, but not worry about the platoons' squads. Giving orders to a platoon commander is a no-no.


In my management classes back in business school, we studied a concept of "width of control" vs. "depth of control". Taking Patton's view, there should be no "depth of control" at all, only depth of awareness. That depth of awareness should be exactly one level below your direct subordinates.


I think a good way to look at it is to compare it to the perils of going over your boss's head. The rule would be, "don't go below your subordinate's feet."



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Post #: 6
RE: How to coordinate attacks? - 5/31/2012 7:42:28 PM   
Central Blue

 

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quote:

For example, the German officers were trained to exercise latitude to interpret their orders to adapt to changing situations, whereas other armies were mostly less flexible. (The German doctrine was studied and used by the US Marine Corps after WW2).


My dad was in reserve officer training at Quantico in May 1941. He didn't tell many stories about that until the day I mentioned I had been able to visit Antietam and Gettysburg. He told me that they had traveled all over those battlefields for classes. And then he taught me the little poem they taught him:

Here lie the bones of Lt. Jones,
A graduate of this institution.
In the midst of the din
He died with a grin
He had followed the school solution.

As a good Marine, he was scornful of Army doctrine.

_____________________________

USS St. Louis firing on Guam, July 1944. The Cardinals and Browns faced each other in the World Series that year

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