Armored Vehicles and Artillery (Full Version)

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blackcloud6 -> Armored Vehicles and Artillery (7/18/2020 11:23:55 PM)

Yesterday playing back to Town as the West Germans against the AI Warsaw Pact I observed something happen with moving vehicles getting plastered by artillery.

I had ordered one of the Leopard I companies up the autobahn through Sommersell to occupy the woods just south of Westerbruck. As they were on their way, they bunched up in Hex 1313 (this was not a waypoint) after a move impulse and Soviet artillery hit them and killed many tanks. This made me wonder what is going on:

Did they stop there? If so for what reason? They were not ordered to.

Or because their move "impulse" was over the program can't tell if they are moving or not so they just get clobbered as if they were stationary.

If they stopped, why did they do so? How can this be prevented?

Hitting armored vehicles that are moving is very difficult. So if they were moving, why was the losses so high?

Is there a way to make sure they stay spread out and not bunch up during a move?

In a related issue, in this scenario so far armored vehicle losses to artillery have been high, especially BMPs and BTRs. Why is this possible? Unless a round actually hit the vehicle, it is unlikely to be destroyed or suffered major damage. Is the affect of artillery on armored vehicles a bit too high? I certainly can see artillery suppressing armor as they have to button up, and also may force them to retreat as the doctrine is to move out of the barrage. So what is going on with artillery vs armored vehicles?

What are ways to prevent or reduce damage done by enemy artillery on armored vehicles?

CapnDarwin -> RE: Armored Vehicles and Artillery (7/19/2020 3:17:20 PM)

blackcloud6, without a screenshot for some context it is hard to determine why the units stopped and bunched up. Was there a bridge crossing in front of them? Did the lead unit come under fire and stop to engage and the rest grouped up? Losses to armored vehicles depend on a bunch of factors such as terrain, cover, number of units in the hex, number of tubes and caliber of the artillery, special rounds like ICM or scattered mines, the spotter has LOS to the target units, etc.. You also need to look at the "losses" and see what is a fall out versus what was a hard kill. Most heavy AFVs will fall out. IFVs can get killed easier with their lighter armor.

The best way to not bunch up is to plot movements for each unit of a group and reduce the overlapping of units in hexes. This may mean some off-road movement for some units. Be aware that bridge crossings slow movement down as vehicles have to file across. Kill enemy recon units! Keep moving. If the enemy has ICM it can wreck a large number of AFVs in one shot.

Hope that helps explain what you are seeing. [8D]

SwampYankee68 -> RE: Armored Vehicles and Artillery (7/19/2020 4:23:51 PM)

Were you moving deliberate or hasty? I would think that would have some effect as well.

blackcloud6 -> RE: Armored Vehicles and Artillery (7/19/2020 4:53:41 PM)

Wouldn't a formation command prevent units from bunching up in case the lead unit comes under fire or runs into an obstacle or any other reason that may cause it to halt? After all, our computer platoon leaders should know better.

You might what to think about have some SOPs that the player can tell the units to use. Examples might be:

"Column SOP" units will maintain one hex, two hex etc. distance when moving and halting.

"Fire and move." Units will move back a hex after engaging in combat. This will aid in the notion of not staying in one spot too long. maybe the "screen" command does that but I have not seen it do so.

I'm sure there are others that some players could come up with.

blackcloud6 -> RE: Armored Vehicles and Artillery (7/19/2020 5:08:24 PM)

"Hope that helps explain what you are seeing."

Thanks, your answer helps. Unfortunately, I didn't see why that whole company got bunched up, I was watching the intense fight in the city that was going on when i heard the artillery hit the unit that had seemed to halt all together in a the hex getting clobbered.

SwampYankee68 -> RE: Armored Vehicles and Artillery (7/19/2020 6:38:17 PM)

can you replay from before the event to see if it happens consistently?

z1812 -> RE: Armored Vehicles and Artillery (7/19/2020 6:52:40 PM)

I find artillery to be quite useful against Armour on the move, or in an open area in FPRS. I am not sure if this is accurate, however it is the way it works in the game.

As an aside, it seems to me Infantry should be more effective against armour when adjacent to it.

blackcloud6 -> RE: Armored Vehicles and Artillery (7/19/2020 8:38:04 PM)


ORIGINAL: SwampYankee68

can you replay from before the event to see if it happens consistently?

I don't think I have a save that is close enough to the event. I suspect the lead unit might have come under fire, halted and caused the unit to bunch up.

GloriousRuse -> RE: Armored Vehicles and Artillery (7/20/2020 1:45:29 AM)

Re: infantry. When you move armor into the same hex (sub 500m) in dense terrain, they’ll do a number on the tanks. Beyond that they’re mostly relying on their ATGMs.

Re: Artillery. Yes, the game badly overmodels artillery in virtually every way imaginable, from shell effects to accuracy, response time, and ammo numbers. It’d be a pretty grievous error in a serious sim, but for a beer and pretzels game like this you just kind of shrug and say “well, guess that’s the system...I can play a big Cold War battle in turns that take a few minutes, I can accept some wonkiness”

CapnDarwin -> RE: Armored Vehicles and Artillery (7/20/2020 9:49:42 PM)

@GloriousRuse, we are not aiming at the beer and pretzels end of the spectrum. If you have data/information that can correct any of the data we are using we are more than happy to hear it. A number of those factors are easily accessible in the data files and can be adjusted. While things in RS are not perfect, we are working to make many of those areas better for Southern Storm and are working with information from ex-military folks who did artillery for a job. So please hit us up with those items that you see as over modeled so we can make adjustments to the SS codebase. [8D]

GloriousRuse -> RE: Armored Vehicles and Artillery (7/21/2020 4:53:14 AM)

I’ll email you sometime this weekend. For a reality comparison, you can shoot three continuous neutralizing missions anywhere on the map at precise five minute intervals in game, and may very well get multiple tank kills per shot. You can keep doing this for several turns before needing to reload, and even if completely unobserved and firing from a battery that just came out of road column, the rounds will land in the exact hex you want them in.

In reality, that average tank kill should take about three straight minutes of just shooting - let alone the rest of the fire mission time, where the observer might take a long as three minutes before it ever gets to the FDC, who will take their own processing time, crews are assembling the right charges and fuses, etc. - after which a battery will have gone through 25-33% of its “on the track” ammo. Ammo haulers and support units extend that, but uploading ammo from hauler is a very different operation than a hip shoot. And even though early PNT is coming around by ‘89, registering those first rounds is going to be required any time the battery moves or even shifts its angle of fire substantially if you don’t want some serious inaccuracy for the first shots fired. If the brigade/division commander just points at a map on the backside of a hill and a battery slews there on the fly, you might be pounding the crap out of something a hex or two over and never know it. So our game missions might have right to fifteen minutes between them, run a battery nearly dry and force a local upload, have escalating inaccuracy in each major directional shift, may very well miss the hex they’re aimed at if unobserved, might break the guns, and unless the tanks in question actually sit in the open field waiting for the rounds to come in, may very well not achieve any disabling effects.

Tuhhodge -> RE: Armored Vehicles and Artillery (11/12/2020 10:36:53 AM)

I’ve just started playing this game again and also found the speed with which arty is called and the. able to plaster a hex is remarkably fast. The effects are also devastating despite the armour being on the move. These hexes are 500m across!

Searry -> RE: Armored Vehicles and Artillery (11/12/2020 10:49:54 AM)

Movement management to minimize arty effect is the most important thing in the game. The second most important is trying to get rid off enemy arty.

sfbaytf -> RE: Armored Vehicles and Artillery (1/25/2021 3:54:30 PM)

I'm playing a campaign game as well as scenarios and the Soviet artillery is highly effective and fast to target HQ's and units. Also had it take out helos. APCs suffer badly and MBTs get taken out, but at a lesser rate. I did take a look Force Roster and looks like many of the tanks hit by Arty have the wrench symbol over them so maybe the arty blew off the treads and tanks immobilized?

You definitely have to keep HQs and your SP artillery on the move. I haven't delved into the Soviet side of things, but I'm presuming they have EW and other units that track communications and pass that along to artillery for targeting.

Are their differences modeled in the game to take into account the different doctrines between the Soviet and NATO forces in the period modeled? I'll have to dig up some old S&T magazines articles that discussed the 2 opposing sides during this period to see if there is any useful info.

TarkError -> RE: Armored Vehicles and Artillery (2/1/2021 12:51:20 AM)

When you see a wrench symbol, it's a sign of a mission-killed AFV, which means stuff like broken optics and tracks.

Generally speaking Western open sources didn't really get a good understand of Soviet "doctrine" until the end of the 1980s, and the best sources on Soviet artillery are Russian-language field manuals and related articles in tactical journals like Military Herald...

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