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What is the role of infantry? - 12/1/2014 5:18:20 AM   
raventhefuhrer

 

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I am looking for some help on how to use infantry effectively, and what exactly their role is in this game and the Cold War battlefield.

I understand that in this era the tanks are meant to be the spearheads, and infantry generally follow behind. This makes sense because tanks are the harder targets and generally have longer engagement ranges, they're the best prepared for first contact combat. Though, I would imagine that at close range and in concealing terrain (forests, cities) you'd want the infantry to go in first to locate threats before moving tanks in.

Anyways, I haven't really found a good use for infantry yet. The vast majority of my infantry kills seem to actually come from the ATGMs on their IFVs, not from the infantrymen themselves. Likewise when I position my infantry in ways that would seem advantageous to them (for example in the middle of a city) I often find that enemy armor literally rolls over them, inflicting catastrophic losses while taking very negligible losses of their own.

So at best, my infantry seems to be a speed bump rather than a danger to enemy tanks, even in seemingly ideal circumstances. I don't think I've yet seen a situation where two infantry platoons actually start firing at each other with personal weapons, and I'm positive that even at close range my infantry is inflicting basically no losses to enemy tanks - losses that are inflicted are probably attributable to the IFV more than the infantry.

So I guess I am asking, what should my infantry be doing? I haven't found a good role or use for my actual infantrymen, and generally they've just been passengers who are along for the ride and the IFV is what I really want.

Could anyone give me some insight on what my infantry should be doing from a strategic sense, but also advice on how to actually control infantry? For example, when to use 'Assault' or 'Move - Deliberate', how many hexes from objective I should disembark infantry, and so on.
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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/1/2014 6:36:25 AM   
Alex1812


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I agree. The infantry looks not so strong in the game. Tanks win at any situation, even in close combat and close terrain. In my opinion, protection of tanks (and other vehicles) and its firepower must be decreased for close terrain.

< Message edited by Alex1812 -- 12/1/2014 7:51:38 AM >

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/1/2014 8:23:54 AM   
Roger Neilson 3


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I also would love to know what their use is, other than simply dying.

At present they sit somewhere I have told them to be, if they have ATGMs they kill the odd tank, infantry to infantry combat does not seem to produce any results. OTOH both tanks and artillery wipe out their vehicles and the troops even though they are no longer in their vehicles....

Its a mystery to me. WP just seem to bring them late to the party once 'in theory' the tanks have rolled up evrything, but NATO I have to wonder, in a defensive situation, what really is the point of the main infantry units. Maybe they wondered the same at the time?

Roger

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/1/2014 8:25:04 AM   
Roger Neilson 3


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I also have no clue how to use the 'assault' command...

Roger

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/1/2014 11:13:43 AM   
Mymafia

 

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It would be quite interesting if there was a campaign in which the leading role was - infantry.
Well, you know, intelligence infantry in the woods, trenches with infantry, special forces infantry, engineers infantry.

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/1/2014 11:25:04 AM   
CapnDarwin


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Infantry in the open dies rather quickly from other infantry and vehicles. They are better suited to controlling city objectives where they have bonuses to fighting vehicles. Some infantry in the game are ill equipped to handle tanks. Use the subunit inspector to see if they have any HEAT weapons (RPGs, LAW, etc) that can take down tanks. Infantry also have a very short range of 0 to 1 hex. They are better set to hold in good cover and screen in poor. NATO units are about a third the size of the Soviet units. Keep that in mind when assaulting or defending against them. Use your infantry to engage the enemies infantry to keep your vehicles from being hammered in cities. It is a bit of a role switch from WW2.

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/1/2014 11:26:40 AM   
calgar


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quote:

Mymafia said

It would be quite interesting if there was a campaign in which the leading role was - infantry.


Have you tried the "Purple one" scenario?

A

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/1/2014 11:27:31 AM   
Lowlaner2012

 

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Hi guys just thought I would add to this discussion, since 2.06 I have used infantry to mostly defend in urban terrain near objectives....

I have had numerous same hex combats (again in urban terrain) where my NATO infantry managed to kill red tanks...

Don't forget that most of the infantry weapons in the game, small arms and light AT weapons have a very short range and are suited to same hex close combat...

So I believe that infantry are best used for defence or attack in covered terrain, the trick is getting them there fast and safely, either using cover and/or supporting them with tanks, arty and air support until they reach there objective hex :-)


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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/1/2014 12:01:48 PM   
henri51


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Infantry is almost useless, but hard to kill in cities. They are worth 5-10 times less than tanks, so are good to make enemies waste their ammo and to die instead of tanks. If five infantry can take out one tank before they die, that is a good deal for the infantry

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/1/2014 12:45:32 PM   
Lowlaner2012

 

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Hi Henri1 that sounds a lot like Soviet doctrine ;)

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/1/2014 3:24:14 PM   
istari6

 

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Under 2.06, I've had infantry perform quite well in cities, IF they're Dug-In (Hold) and Soviet armor rolls right over the top of them. Even 1 hex distance drops their effectiveness dramatically. But since the AI tends to roll towards VP locations along roads, it's not hard to position infantry squads in dense urban areas on the VP location and the hex or two approaching it. Just last night, an American infantry platoon (4 Mech Infantry squads) destroyed an entire T-80B1 tank company (10) over the course 1-2 turns when the T-80s rolled on top of them. They only lost 1-2 squads themselves.

Remember too that the Americans are using the M72 LAW (24 HEAT, 150m range) and the Germans the PzF 44 (25 HEAT, 300m range). These are both simply unable to kill the latest Soviet armor unless getting flank, rear or top shots. So in 1989 we're seeing a period when NATO infantry were generally weak against the newest Soviet MBTs equipped with ERA and various composite armors. The British are in a much better place with the brand-new LAW 80 (47 HEAT, 500m range).

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/1/2014 3:28:53 PM   
istari6

 

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My biggest problem with infantry in the current engine is that we can't separate the IFVs from the dismount squads. This leads to either IFVs suffering very high losses when the MBTs roll on top of them at point-blank range, or positioning the IFVs at some distance but pulling their infantry squads completely out of the fight. I know this is partially a problem with mechanized infantry doctrine in general, and that commanders in real-life were debating what to do with such anemic infantry squads if separated from close IFV fire support, but would still like to experiment with different tactics. Even being able to step the IFVs 1 hex from their dismounts would probably drop their losses significantly in close terrain. Hopefully this will be something that can be incorporated into 2.1+.

Chris

< Message edited by istari6 -- 12/1/2014 4:29:34 PM >

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/1/2014 3:30:52 PM   
Lowlaner2012

 

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I was playing the rhino scenario and the British infantry did really well against the Russian T 80s in urban terrain, I didn't realise they had a better model LAW than the.Americans....

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/2/2014 5:35:13 AM   
IronMikeGolf

 

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In this game engine, your infantry is very much at the mercy of the scenario designer. First there is the issue of organization and equipment. In my battaion during this time period, a mech platoon looked like this:

4 x M2A2 BFV (5 rds TOW per track)
2 x Rifle Squad:
9 men
M16A2
M249 SAW
M203 40mm GL
M136 (AT4) (8 rds)
M47 Dragon (8 rds)

Then there is engineering. Because there is no in-game player controlled countermobility (obstacles and mines) nor improved positions, you c an't really do a deliberate defense, unless the scenario designer creates a defense for you.

When I get back from vacation, I'll see if I can make a scenario that gives you a sense of what a US mech bn defending is like.



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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/2/2014 9:02:42 AM   
battlerbritain

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: highlandcharge

I was playing the rhino scenario and the British infantry did really well against the Russian T 80s in urban terrain, I didn't realise they had a better model LAW than the.Americans....


Brit troops better equipped than US troops? It doesn't happen very often, believe me!

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/2/2014 9:17:44 AM   
Hexagon


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I think infantry needs appear in nº of soldiers, leave squad as a container for infantry with a number that show the squad firepower.

Vehicles... separate in 2 counters vehicles and infantry incease game complexity... but i think only with a change in how vehicles "expose" increasing their survive rate is enough and with infantry not falling in complete squads sure made infantry more usefull... or at least capable to survive more time.

I dont know if is posible like in Steel Panthers add a parameter to control units "survive rate" maybe the point is more in made infantry stronger compared with vehicles controled by players.

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/2/2014 12:09:59 PM   
cbelva

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: istari6

My biggest problem with infantry in the current engine is that we can't separate the IFVs from the dismount squads. This leads to either IFVs suffering very high losses when the MBTs roll on top of them at point-blank range, or positioning the IFVs at some distance but pulling their infantry squads completely out of the fight. I know this is partially a problem with mechanized infantry doctrine in general, and that commanders in real-life were debating what to do with such anemic infantry squads if separated from close IFV fire support, but would still like to experiment with different tactics. Even being able to step the IFVs 1 hex from their dismounts would probably drop their losses significantly in close terrain. Hopefully this will be something that can be incorporated into 2.1+.

Chris

I think we all would like to see this. Separating the infantry from the vehicle was the original intent of the programmer. Unfortunately, he was not able to get the AI to work properly and eventually had to abandon (at least for now) the two counter concept early in development. Will we see it eventually, I don't know. It all really depends on the development of the AI and whether it gets to the point where it can handle two separate counters for an infantry platoon.

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/2/2014 12:15:44 PM   
cbelva

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Iron Mike Golf

In this game engine, your infantry is very much at the mercy of the scenario designer. First there is the issue of organization and equipment. In my battaion during this time period, a mech platoon looked like this:

4 x M2A2 BFV (5 rds TOW per track)
2 x Rifle Squad:
9 men
M16A2
M249 SAW
M203 40mm GL
M136 (AT4) (8 rds)
M47 Dragon (8 rds)

Then there is engineering. Because there is no in-game player controlled countermobility (obstacles and mines) nor improved positions, you c an't really do a deliberate defense, unless the scenario designer creates a defense for you.

When I get back from vacation, I'll see if I can make a scenario that gives you a sense of what a US mech bn defending is like.



From this TOE I can tell you were in the army after me. Your points on countermobility and the infantry being at the mercy of the scenario designer is well taken. The scale and time frame of this game in reality does not include the "preparation time" it takes to prepare these defensive. It takes time. The scenario begin after that preparation time. Therefore you are correct. The scenario designer has to take these preparations into account in designing their scenario.

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/2/2014 1:32:31 PM   
pzgndr

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: cbelva
I think we all would like to see this. Separating the infantry from the vehicle was the original intent of the programmer. Unfortunately, he was not able to get the AI to work properly and eventually had to abandon (at least for now) the two counter concept early in development. Will we see it eventually, I don't know. It all really depends on the development of the AI and whether it gets to the point where it can handle two separate counters for an infantry platoon.


You really do need separate units for the dismounts and their carriers so they can perform separate missions. But then again you really need smaller hexes like 250m to do justice to infantry combat with small arms ranges. As it is with 500m hexes and the game keeping the dismounts and carriers together all the time, the role of infantry in the game is problematic and difficult to resolve. I know it was a design decision and all that, but given the playability of PL/PB/AIW and Assault! boardgames at 250m scale it's still annoying you guys went with the 500m scale. And TacOps went with a pixel scale, so you could really get into the weeds if you wanted to with unit SOPs and such. Anyways, we're kinda pigeonholed into a tank/helo/arty maneuver warfare game which works pretty well for 1980's Germany. I'd really like to see more fidelity for the pzgndr's(!) but I guess that will have to wait until someday when you develop a WWII game and then backfit the modern warfare units to it. 2016??

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/2/2014 1:48:48 PM   
cbelva

 

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pzgndr, I don't disagree with you. I argued for an expanded dismount roll even with the current limitations. The compromise at the time was the setting to allow a unit to walk up to 9 hexes to its final obj. Not perfect, but better than nothing. As a brigade asst operations officer there were times where we ordered mech inf to dismount, leave their vehicles behind and walk to their obj. That did not happen a lot, but it did happen occasionally. Normally the decision as to what to do with the carriers was left to the lower level commander.
 
When we go to WWII our plans are to go to a 250m size hex. WWII was more of infantry combat than the modern battlefield. At that time Rob might have to revisit splitting the carriers from the infantry once again. I don't want to tie him to that--I only am thinking out loud. He is good, but there are limits as to what you can do. We will just have to wait and see.

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/2/2014 2:26:43 PM   
raventhefuhrer

 

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Is there a Flashpoint Campaigns set in World War 2 being planned then?

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/2/2014 2:56:40 PM   
wodin


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Put them in Cities or fortified hexes. If they have their anti tank sub unit they can be very useful. I would like to see them alittle bit hardier and stronger esp close up though. I also like the idea of say City\Town hex VP have to be occupied by Infantry would be a cool new objective. As I'd imagine an area in real life an area esp a built up area wouldn't be considered occupied until actual foot units where on ground rather than AFV's??

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/2/2014 3:49:53 PM   
cbelva

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: raventhefuhrer

Is there a Flashpoint Campaigns set in World War 2 being planned then?


Only time will tell. It is something we have talked about and we would like to do it. If this engine stays viable with the players and our health holds up, there is no telling where we might take it to. The only thing we know for certain is that we are heading towards the Southern Storm as Capn D has already explained.

Looking at my last message, I should have said "If" and not "When". Nothing is set in stone or on the foreseeable future.

< Message edited by cbelva -- 12/2/2014 4:52:27 PM >

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/2/2014 4:42:55 PM   
wodin


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Well if there are more possible projects than is possible to create why not give out the engine for someone else to create a game using it like they do with BA and PC? Even Combat Mission and Command Ops have gone or are going that way. Maybe have a two or three teams going. That way players are happy and you have more game releases over a quicker time period than doing one at a time with one team.

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/2/2014 5:02:26 PM   
CapnDarwin


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A few quick points about mechanized infantry:

1). Infantry units, once unloaded, derive their protection from the cover and orders they have. This is independent of the AFVs.
2). Attacks directed at mechanized units are resolved differently for the infantry squads and the AFVs. This is a function of 1).
3). Infantry in towns gets advantages versus AFVs. Flank shots at 1 hex and Top/Flank mix in hex. This makes infantry very dangerous to tangle with in towns if you are tanks. Assuming the infantry is AT equipped.

Hope that answers some questions.

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/2/2014 5:18:40 PM   
CapnDarwin


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Next up is dismounts and transports:

1). Making on unit become two sounds trivial, many things do, but making sure things split and join correctly takes some doing. Now if unit A dismounts from carrier A and always goes back to A. That isn't too bad. Problem is those odd times people want to swap out carriers, maybe for loss reasons. Now tracking and ID of the dismounts starts getting convoluted.
2). Hot on the heels of 1) is the want to split off and join subunits. Now tracking who is who or from where is more daunting, but not impossible.
3). Both 1) and 2) are moderately easy for a human player, but wide open to gamey or nonstandard doctrine. On the flip side getting the AI to effectively and correctly use these two functions becomes a very labor intensive action. Again, not impossible, but taking time from other features and functions.

With all that said we will need to revisit the need for these functions or other mechanics to provide a better control over mechanized infantry use. Nothing we are likely to solve tomorrow, but it is on our radar.

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Work on Southern Storm continues! Very busy times right now.

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/2/2014 7:22:55 PM   
pzgndr

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Capn Darwin
With all that said we will need to revisit the need for these functions or other mechanics to provide a better control over mechanized infantry use. Nothing we are likely to solve tomorrow, but it is on our radar.


All well and good for now Capn! As I said earlier, the game works pretty well for 1980s Germany. The whole premise of the scenarios and campaigns is a more spontaneous and hasty war, so the infantry model in towns works ok. It's not FUBAR. It's just that if players want to get into more deliberate operations where dismounted infantry has a more significant role, then we'll need other game mechanics to handle that.

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/2/2014 9:29:55 PM   
governato

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: cbelva

quote:

ORIGINAL: raventhefuhrer

Is there a Flashpoint Campaigns set in World War 2 being planned then?


Only time will tell. It is something we have talked about and we would like to do it.
[....]


I would like that! Wonder if Africa or the Caucasus 'd be better suited for an engine adapted to WWII. Those are less cramped areas than Western Europe (that has been covered already by Command Ops). Just thinking out loud!

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/3/2014 10:26:33 AM   
Hexagon


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Maybe in urban terrain mech infantry units defending can have a bonus for AFV to... i refer that infantry can use buildings to flank enemy vehicles (as you say improve AT value VS attacker vehicles) and separate enemy infantry from their vehicles... them defender AFVs can destroy enemy vehicles easier because know where is enemy, know terrain and where move to have advantage over enemy and they can cover or moving back or moving forward because they can use better terrain than attacker.

I dont know if is possible my idea of add as parameter a survive rate value for infantry, vehicles and air units... a way to reduce kills in general or in certain unit class.

PD: WWII is interesting but maybe i prefer before a WWII serie middle east wars covered they could be a good first touch for non ultramodern wars (if you dont touch in DLCs 50-60s).

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RE: What is the role of infantry? - 12/3/2014 11:45:41 AM   
CapnDarwin


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Hexagon,

Flanking fire in urban areas already happens in the code do to the type of terrain and ranges of engagement. There is already a bonus in cities to effective protection of AFVs and Grunts. In urban environments the APCs would be very close to the infantry in order to support and cover, both ways in fact.

Survival rate is already built in based on the effective protection(class), order state, readiness, training, etc of the unit. There is no need for an extra value. Steel Panthers, from which you are referencing, used that value to determine if a crew survived its AFV getting hit. We don't track to that level.

_____________________________

Work on Southern Storm continues! Very busy times right now.

Cap'n Darwin aka Jim Snyder
On Target Simulations LLC

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