Matrix Games Forums

Forums  Register  Login  Photo Gallery  Member List  Search  Calendars  FAQ 

My Profile  Inbox  Address Book  My Subscription  My Forums  Log Out

RE: Observations from an Armor officer

 
View related threads: (in this forum | in all forums)

Logged in as: Guest
Users viewing this topic: none
  Printable Version
All Forums >> [New Releases from Matrix Games] >> Armored Brigade >> RE: Observations from an Armor officer Page: <<   < prev  1 [2]
Login
Message << Older Topic   Newer Topic >>
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/23/2018 5:58:32 AM   
gbem

 

Posts: 187
Joined: 11/19/2018
Status: offline
chechen forces actually had a large percentage of forme afghan war vets...

The performance of the chechens are more in line with that of the soviet army than the russian one...

Mikeck its not that soviet doctrine was more rigid... the russians learnt a hard lesson in ww2 that overly centralized command has its issues... its just that NATO is more versatile and decentralized than WP doctrine.... since NATO intended to counter superior WP firepower via a mobile defense and counterattack strategy

(in reply to mikeCK)
Post #: 31
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/23/2018 7:58:21 AM   
Sorrow_Knight

 

Posts: 24
Joined: 11/11/2018
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: mikeCK

“Encouraging it’s leaders to exercise initiative” is NOT the same as being able to do it. You can say “Mike, I expect you to fix this car yourself”; but if you don’t train me how to do it, it’s not gonna happen.

It doesn’t matter what the Soviet army WANTED their junior officers to do. Doctrine reflects reality. In Afghanistan, Soviet pilots would overfly troops in need of air support to deliver their bombs to a location provided to them previously. Didnt matter if the bombs were no longer needed there. They would fly to the ordered target and drop bombs even if no one was there. Part of an after action review I no longer have access to.

You can’t just claim “well, now we expect our junior officers to exercise initiative....that takes a decade or more of transformation and requires extensive training . You simply can’t provide the training needed at the NCO level (and frankly, at the E-1-E-4 level) necessary to truly exercise initiative when you have soldiers conscripted for 2 years. The Soviet Army simply didn’t provide the training schools and programs to its junior offices and NCOs to enable the ability to exercise initiative.

It took the US 10 years to fundamentally change the doctrine in this regard.

In The 1994 Chechnya war, this issue was evident. Russian troops failed to adapt quickly to combat conditions. NCOs and officers lacked training to carry out complex operations without upper level staff work. I’m not just making this up....The reason the Russian army is moving to a volunteer professional army is because of these deficiencies.

So any article can claim: “oh, we aren’t like that anymore” but the fact that you say it doesn’t make it true. What evidence of fundamental change was there in the Soviet Army in the 1970’s or 80’s would indicate that they are expecting junior officers to make major decisions and operate without guidance. You don’t do that merely by declaring it.

I do disagree with the premise in the article that the “old way” of junior officers requiring specific direction was related to Communism. I don’t believe it was. It was related to the fact the the Soviet Union had to maintain an extremely large military of conscripts and it had neither the time nor money to provide all that is needed for a professional NCO and junior officer Corp

There is also something to be said for the general Soviet Philosophy that modern wars are so deadly that one is better off haveinh large numbers of troops instead of fewer with better Training. Same concept in armor. Why invest in Tank Recover and repair as well as large logistical capabilities and parts of Tanks are going to be destroyed by the 100’s every week? A really good tank can be destroyed by an average tank so better to have 4 average tanks than 1 good one. I’m not sure they were wrong.

So I’m not saying the Soviet Army wasn’t good...not at all. They were very capable and I have no doubt that until about 1983-4 or so, they would have steamrolled NATO in a conventional conflict. But the fact remains that in operation, the Soviets simply lacked the capacity to have their junior officers and NCOs excercise true battlefield initiative even had they wanted to.

Or maybe the entire US military was wrong for 45 years. I served in the US army, not Soviet. I just don’t see how a conscript force does th.


Well... You`ve already got answer on this post earlier, but, you wrote it for me, so I think I should answer myself.
First of all, fully centralized command chain gone from Soviet army during WWII (after 1941 NCOs and junior oficers already got some autonomy in their actions on battelfield, and that autonomy just went wider next years untill there was born concept from quote, I gave you earlier. Also you should accept the fact, that Soviet and nowdays Russian army organisation is different from NATO in general and US in person, and when US platoon commander have under control 34 soldiers, with APC\IFV, and mass of other stuff, his colleauge in Soviet Army has only 3 squads of 6 soldiers each and 3 APC\IFV, in total Soviet platoon is smaller, than US one (30-32 soldiers (APC\IFV crews are members of platoon) vs 35) and have different role on the battlefield, and also there is difference between Soviet and US NCO, and that dofference lay not in their qualification, but in different task that they must perform.

(in reply to mikeCK)
Post #: 32
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/23/2018 9:22:56 AM   
Sorrow_Knight

 

Posts: 24
Joined: 11/11/2018
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: mikeCK

But as far as what their junior leaders could do, I’m not sure there is a difference between 1989 and 1994. I guess my point is that expecting your officers to exercise discretion AND make the right choices requires professional schooling. The type of training that US (and many NATO) junior officers and NCOs received simply didn’t occur in the Soviet Army. That’s not to say that they weren’t well trained....the were! Just not in the same areas as their western counterparts


You are wrong here. First of all, as it was mentioned already- in 1994 USSR was just ruined, and army was the last thing for government to think about, also many soviet commanders, include NCOs left the army after crush of USSR, and new ones... well... their quality was extremely lower, than their ancestors, also army was extremely poor equiped and supplied, in that case Chechen wars (both) was... bad. And actually I think, that if USA will someday came to similar situation, than Russia in 1994 US army will be in same condition too, or even worst.
Also, as I said above- there is just different concept of army organisation in Soviet Army and US, and that concept lead to different training for NCO. Soviet NCO in common motorrifle unit simply dont need any airborne training because his unit will never been dropped fron plane it is work of VDV, not infantry, he dont need scout\sniper training just because it is job of dedicated recon squads and so on, but motorrifle NCO will know everything about how to command motorrifle unit and how properly use both his men and transport in combat, so he is well enough prepared and trained to make right choises in combat, while situation is part of his unit job, and ask for proper support when things going aboard of his unit function and\or possibility to solve problem.
The main difference between Soviet\Russian army concept and NATO\US one is that Soviet style is about grand strategic operations with hundreds of thousand soldiers, thousands tanks and planes involved, and in such scale low-level units is less important and become only a small screw in big war machine, so Soviet NCO didn`t have so wide competence as their NATo counterparts, and NATO style is more about small operations with limited resources, and in that case low-level unit become very important just because it mostly act on it`s own, and NCO must be ready to act beyond his unit normal function.

(in reply to mikeCK)
Post #: 33
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/23/2018 1:38:39 PM   
kevinkins


Posts: 1791
Joined: 3/8/2006
Status: online

quote:

and NATO style is more about small operations with limited resources,


NATO, that is the US for the most part, has practiced "strike warfare" since the fall of the Soviet Union and decline of their military. Strike warfare is about small operations with overwhelming resources compared to the foes they are striking. While not strike warfare, Iraq and and Afghanistan are COIN and definitely require advanced training as a cost of entry.

But the Sorrow_Knight is right. the training of a continental power (USSR) and a maritime power (NATO) are different. The USSR envisioned the mass maneuver of hundreds of thousands where "quantity has a quality all it's own - Stalin" (command push). While NATO adopted recon pull to counter balance Soviet numbers. Recon pull requires a additional training above the level of the conscript who drives and shoots where they are told. It's difficult to appreciate the Soviet method of war unless you play huge battles where a small tactical failure in one sector will mushroom into a strategic defeat. Tactically, NATO would win most of time where ever they showed up. AKA the Germans on the east front WW2.

So in an AB "campaign" the Soviets would start out with a numerical advantage with training and moral a notch lower than NATO. They if the campaign went in NATOs favor, they would start limited counterattacks against second and third line Soviets where their training and moral level would be set much less than NATO. Using recon pull, NATO would try to find an takeout Soviet logistic trains and not operate solely to seize ground.

Kevin

< Message edited by kevinkin -- 11/23/2018 1:40:25 PM >


_____________________________

“The study of history lies at the foundation of all sound military conclusions and practice.”
― Alfred Thayer Mahan


(in reply to Sorrow_Knight)
Post #: 34
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/23/2018 2:24:46 PM   
altipueri

 

Posts: 591
Joined: 11/14/2009
Status: offline
As a teenager in Germany at HQ British Army of the Rhine - Rheindahlen in 1970 the view I picked up was that the Russians would attack:

A) When there was snow on the ground, because we were useless in the snow.

B) On a Wednesday afternoon or Saturday, because they were sports days and it was impossible to get hold of a gun or an officer.


PS - just bought this game in the sale - not tried it yet.

(in reply to kevinkins)
Post #: 35
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/23/2018 4:17:12 PM   
Sorrow_Knight

 

Posts: 24
Joined: 11/11/2018
Status: offline
quote:

ORIGINAL: kevinkin

NATO, that is the US for the most part, has practiced "strike warfare" since the fall of the Soviet Union and decline of their military. Strike warfare is about small operations with overwhelming resources compared to the foes they are striking. While not strike warfare, Iraq and and Afghanistan are COIN and definitely require advanced training as a cost of entry.


I meant limited not in compare to oppofite forces, but limited on their own... like "we send 200% more firepower, than our enemy have, but it is all and there will not be any more".

< Message edited by Sorrow_Knight -- 11/23/2018 8:53:55 PM >

(in reply to kevinkins)
Post #: 36
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/24/2018 3:38:12 PM   
Mark Florio

 

Posts: 38
Joined: 12/26/2013
From: Connecticut
Status: offline
Hi again. On another point that I am not sure is modeled well is maintenance and repair. It would have been typical in even an elite unit like the 3rd Infantry Division (MECH) a long road march would leave behind stragglers, broken tracked vehicles and other maintenance issues preventing completion of mission. In a dynamic environment loss of track = mobility kill until a repair could be accomplished safely. I would say in a long road march with good maintenance you might lose up to 2-5% of your tracked vehicles. that is without combat. Off road, maneuvering at night that number could be double. Most vehicles could and would be recovered within a reasonable period but that could be hours,.. enough time to affect combat availability. I would say too that the soviet forces at the time had even worse readiness and vehicle maintenance capabilities. As an armor officer I would carefully select my approach at night through any off road terrain because a puddle looks like a tank ditch and vice versa with NVG tech at the time. We lost a tank crew one rotation at Hohenfels maneuvering at night and they flipped the tank over into a tank obstacle that they couldn't see.

(in reply to mikeCK)
Post #: 37
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/24/2018 3:51:06 PM   
kevinkins


Posts: 1791
Joined: 3/8/2006
Status: online
Hi Mark

I would not expect to see maintenance and repair modeled until we get a campaign system. But I believe it's been done in the past with other wargames, so it's something to press the developers on when the time comes.

Kevin

_____________________________

“The study of history lies at the foundation of all sound military conclusions and practice.”
― Alfred Thayer Mahan


(in reply to Mark Florio)
Post #: 38
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/25/2018 12:08:25 AM   
Sorrow_Knight

 

Posts: 24
Joined: 11/11/2018
Status: offline
Hmmm... I`m just curious why all of you coninue thinking, that Cold War Soviet Army was something like tribe of orks, that can rely only on it`s numbers in case of war? Sorry for being a bit selfish, but I din`t said anything "bad" about NATO armies... I won`t say that in Soviet Army everything was in ideal condition, but it wasn`t just numerous horde with tanks =)

(in reply to kevinkins)
Post #: 39
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/25/2018 12:35:16 AM   
Blond_Knight


Posts: 891
Joined: 5/15/2004
Status: offline
Well, although their training has come a long way, you have to admit that historically the Soviets havent been concerned about casualties, only the objective. And its within the memories or some veterans that Commissars forced groups of untrained, and sometimes unequipped men into human wave attacks against German units.

(in reply to Sorrow_Knight)
Post #: 40
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/25/2018 4:06:30 AM   
Rosseau

 

Posts: 2390
Joined: 9/13/2009
Status: offline
Thanks to all for putting such effort into your posts. I know nothing, so it helps.

But it did occur to me how I would model 1970s to very early '80s scenarios using the Soviet tactics of the day. There are some options in the game, but you pretty much have to role-play it. Most will go to that era and play it based on everything they know.

It would be interesting to follow the Soviet theories of the time to the letter and see how things play out. Would be perfect for multiplayer, but guessing the AI's tactics would still be better than what the WP was straddled with at the time.

(in reply to mikeCK)
Post #: 41
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/25/2018 11:36:19 AM   
Sorrow_Knight

 

Posts: 24
Joined: 11/11/2018
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Blond_Knight

Well, although their training has come a long way, you have to admit that historically the Soviets havent been concerned about casualties, only the objective. And its within the memories or some veterans that Commissars forced groups of untrained, and sometimes unequipped men into human wave attacks against German units.

You are wrong all over your post =) First of all, there was "fight with skill, not number" rule, that was set by Suvorov in 18th century, and it was rule for soviet army at least since 1942. Second thing is that there was not "one rifle for three soldiers" it never was so (there was about 37 000 000 of rifles in storage that was enough to equipe Soviet every mobilized men in USSR with at least one rifle. Role of Comissars was lowered in 1942, and disasterous casualties of 1941 is mostly result of Soviet Army was unprepared for war in general... in 1942 or even 43... picture would be qute different. Also in 1942 count of casualties become almost equal, and in 43-45 German casualties was a bit to much higher than soviet.

(in reply to Blond_Knight)
Post #: 42
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/25/2018 1:15:24 PM   
kevinkins


Posts: 1791
Joined: 3/8/2006
Status: online
quote:

It would be interesting to follow the Soviet theories of the time to the letter and see how things play out. Would be perfect for multiplayer, but guessing the AI's tactics would still be better than what the WP was straddled with at the time.


Don't expect the AI to conduct a Soviet style "battle drill" attack. You have to experiment with that while being in control of the Soviets yourself. I suggest if you run experiments, select the NATO defence as either dug-in or dug-in and fortified. The later is really tough. If you don't dig NATO in, they will be run over by sheer numbers. Digging in NATO really hampers the Soviet's ability to spot.

Kevin

< Message edited by kevinkin -- 11/26/2018 12:29:33 PM >


_____________________________

“The study of history lies at the foundation of all sound military conclusions and practice.”
― Alfred Thayer Mahan


(in reply to Sorrow_Knight)
Post #: 43
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/25/2018 2:03:25 PM   
gunny

 

Posts: 995
Joined: 3/1/2003
Status: offline
There was a trend we noticed in about 86 when Soviets were highly rewarding and encouraging acts of initiative during maneuvers. I do recall some examples. This was seen as a greater change to their traditional doctrine.

As for resupply. Our regimental tracked ammo carriers were not very far behind the companies. They could commit to a moddest resupply if a platoon went critical and if opportunity was there to rotate it back to cover for hasty replishment. Forget fuel though. Not a chance to refuel at this scope.

(in reply to mikeCK)
Post #: 44
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/26/2018 12:24:25 PM   
Redmarkus5


Posts: 4360
Joined: 12/1/2007
From: 0.00
Status: offline
I've long wondered how Soviet forces managed to utterly destroy the bulk of the German army by using rigid tactics and by failing to reward initiative on the part of junior leaders. It's never rung true to me and my infantry training during the 1970s (we only ever seemed to be briefed on 'three Soviet tanks moving westwards') also left me unconvinced. There's politics and doctrine, and then there's human nature as observed during combat operations.

Panzer Operations by Erhard Raus is a great read and it dispels much of this myth. Even in 1941, when Raus commanded 6th Pz Div, he recounted to US Army interviewers that Soviet troops were displaying impressive professionalism, deploying quickly in carefully prepared, hidden positions, often holding fire until Axis forces had passed them by, marching without orders to establish new defensive lines, (the advancing Germans could often see their opponents in the distance, marching off-road in a race to the next river line) and essentially winning the war during its first year by inflicting a strategic defeat on the advancing enemy; denying them their strategic objectives.

Rigid adherence to orders during the conduct a desperate delaying battle should not be confused with complete rigidity of thought. And whatever the truth about their conduct, they won.

(in reply to gunny)
Post #: 45
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/26/2018 2:10:15 PM   
altipueri

 

Posts: 591
Joined: 11/14/2009
Status: offline
I just thought it was that in the Russian army it took more courage to retreat than to advance. :)

(in reply to Redmarkus5)
Post #: 46
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/26/2018 3:01:57 PM   
kevinkins


Posts: 1791
Joined: 3/8/2006
Status: online
Sort of like British infantry in the 1800's feared their non-coms more than the French.

_____________________________

“The study of history lies at the foundation of all sound military conclusions and practice.”
― Alfred Thayer Mahan


(in reply to altipueri)
Post #: 47
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/26/2018 8:36:12 PM   
CCIP-subsim


Posts: 624
Joined: 11/10/2015
Status: offline
I wrote a long post about Chechnya, but the forum eated it (and I suppose I'd better use that time to work on my Chechnya map!)

In short, however, I would really refrain from taking Chechnya as any indication of anything about Soviet brigade or battalion-level officers. It really had nothing to do with anything that would have been used against NATO in an all-out war - unless you believe that the entirety of the Soviet war plan against the West in the 80s was comprised of driving up a few mechanized units at peacetime compliment, no planned artillery or secure communications, and no dismounts on their BMPs up to the Reichstag, and declaring victory. This was not a military action of the same kind, and the attitude of Russian leadership (at the presidential/MoD level) was mostly informed by the previous year's parliament crisis in Moscow, which was indeed resolved by driving up tanks to the key political objective and firing off a few rounds. That was definitely NOT what they drove into in Grozny, but the operation was essentially thought of at that level. The lack of resources there is not an abstract concept - when you actually look at how events during the initial assault on Grozny (which dictated the course of the rest of the conflict) unfolded, it's hard to imagine even the best officers from any other army doing better. It was not lack of initiative that was a problem there, and indeed accounts of veterans from that assault have generally spoken very favourably about officers at those levels of command.

(in reply to kevinkins)
Post #: 48
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 11/28/2018 5:47:57 PM   
Veitikka


Posts: 1054
Joined: 6/25/2007
From: Finland
Status: offline

quote:

ORIGINAL: Mark Florio

1). The game mechanics and how the weapons are modeled is excellent. But would love to see more independent movement of troops when they come under fire. Too often I see troops in the open not using smoke and not maneuvering well enough? They should break contact when hit but in this game they dont seem to do that as much?


I'm planning to add a 'Seek cover' SOP option for infantry: http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.asp?m=4560624

quote:



2). The artillery looks too much like direct fire animations... Howitzers shells came in usually at steep angles. You should allow for more mission types to include Rocket munitions and time to target missions. The explosion animations could be boosted a bit... a 155mm shell will create a lot of smoke and debris upon impact.


How the steep angles should look like in the 2D view? The particle effects such as explosions will be improved in the future.

quote:



3). It would be nice to know the effects of night vision. The US forces operated commonly at night and our training included thermal vision gunnery under all weather conditions. The soviets had very little if any night fighting capabilities by the way. The exception was their recon and rotary wing.


I quote the manual:

5.1.32. Thermal Imaging Systems

A vehicle or aircraft that has a weapon with NV range of 3500 meters (the Cold War default value) or more is considered to have a Thermal Imaging System (TIS). Compared to the ordinary NV devices, it allows an improved spotting capability and the unit can see through smoke and dust better. If the unit takes light or heavy damage it loses the TIS capability.

quote:



4). AI behavior. The soviet doctrine at the time was pretty rigid. Not every tank had radios and those that did were basically following a scripted attack. Jr leaders had very little tactical flexibility. The result was often, at least in their training an aggressive push by increasingly more powerful forces once the vanguard found a weakpoint. But their ability to react mid battle was always predicted to be limited.


I can see that there has been some discussion about this, and I haven't read all of it, but almost all the vehicles in the game currently do have radios.

quote:



5). AI behavior for NATO: I havent played yet against the NATO troops but the strategy should be a mobile defense with local counter attacks by Mech forces. Lots of air power and artillery to slow the wave until the REFORGER forces mobilized.


The NATO factions have a shorter command delay when making short-term changes to the plans.

quote:



6). I dont see NBC modeled in AB yet or might not have seen it yet?


The vehicles do have the NBC attribute, but currently the only effect is that they have a better protection against flamethrower attacks.

quote:



7) would like to see rotary wing have more independence. They tend to stay in one spot instead of hopping around behind tree lines and ridgelines?


The helicopters use pop-up tactics. I'll try to make the helicopters use low elevation terrain when moving between battle positions.

quote:



8) resupply. Mech forces usually did a full top off before action but it wouldnt be unusual for ammo and fuel to be pushed forward.Refueling an Abrams took about 5 minutes. Reloading took about 2 minutes a round if the crew hustled and was not in MOPP.


I think the only way to have resupply in the game is to have it abstracted. If the unit stays in one place then ammunition slowly regenerates, depending on the scenario parameter. Our ready/stowed ammunition system works pretty much like this. We will think about it in the future.


_____________________________

Know thyself!

(in reply to Mark Florio)
Post #: 49
RE: Observations from an Armor officer - 12/16/2018 10:49:12 AM   
Mark Florio

 

Posts: 38
Joined: 12/26/2013
From: Connecticut
Status: offline
A rigid doctrine in 1980's is different than what the Soviets developed in 1944. in 44 they had a veteran army, with good leadership finally and the supplies to support dynamic warfare. In the 1980's they had east bloc conscripts with no experience. They had an offensive strategy that relied upon overwhelming NATO quality. rigid doesnt mean dumb. It means scripted and determined.

(in reply to Redmarkus5)
Post #: 50
Page:   <<   < prev  1 [2]
All Forums >> [New Releases from Matrix Games] >> Armored Brigade >> RE: Observations from an Armor officer Page: <<   < prev  1 [2]
Jump to:





New Messages No New Messages
Hot Topic w/ New Messages Hot Topic w/o New Messages
Locked w/ New Messages Locked w/o New Messages
 Post New Thread
 Reply to Message
 Post New Poll
 Submit Vote
 Delete My Own Post
 Delete My Own Thread
 Rate Posts


Forum Software © ASPPlayground.NET Advanced Edition 2.4.5 ANSI

0.145