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Bocage German Performance - 12/17/2019 4:41:00 AM   
Saturnian

 

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I've touched on this elsewhere, but I've noticed that the Germans don't perform well in the bocage. The primary reason seems to be that, though German units were built around the machine gun, German teams under-utilize them in the game. Some of this is likely related to the focus on the American campaign during development, so German gameplay took the back seat, but it is probably still valuable to voice my concerns.

A lot of what I am saying is intuitive, so maybe I don't have all my facts together, but it just doesn't FEEL right.

1. As I said elsewhere, the machine gun is usually the last to fire in ambushes, so that the enemy takes cover from rifle and machine pistol fire before the machine gun even opens up(if it does at all). German teams are far too small, slow and clumsy to really move around the battlefield, but they rarely are able to be positioned with good lines of site or show proper initiative and aggression with their guns.

2. Machine guns do not seem to default position themselves IN the hedgerows, but behind and outside of them. I often have to move the unit inside of the hedgerow during the battle in the hopes that they will be more effective, but usually that doesn't end well as the teams are extremely clumsy and slow to setup. They end up getting shot up before being useful.

3. The guns only fire in short, controlled bursts, when laying down heavier fire would make so much more sense. Following CC2 a change was made in the CC series where the MG teams, particularly the Mg42, started doing its trademark Bzzzzt, bzzzt, bzzzzt. But if you play the original CC1 and CC2 there is a notable difference in how it sounds(it lays down a more sustained fire) and also how effective it is against enemy units. Now it seems to just ZAP the enemy, you don't really get the impression you are cutting through the enemy and shredding them to pieces. It is intimidating, but surely they must have done more than just zap the enemy with little buzzes.

4. The controlled bursts seem less accurate. The 'Bzzzzt' was great in CC3 because it was very ACCURATE, so this made the ZAPPING more tolerable. But now it feels extremely inaccurate and sporadic. So the unit is firing these inaccurate controlled bursts at a close enemy, rather than just laying it thick. This is even so for the heavy mg42 teams, which one would assume have less recoil and would be able to fire in more sustained bursts. I've noted negligible difference between heavy and light teams. One just seems slower moving, but my guess is that in real life the lighter teams would be more likely to fire in controlled bursts and the heavy ones would lay it real thick. Heavy teams don't have to worry about ammunition as much, and have a more stable platform to fire from.

If the controlled bursts are indeed to conserve ammo, I don't find this necessary(granted I do only play 15 minute battles) since by the battle's end they rarely expend more than a quarter of their ammunition because A)Poor positioning and initiative and B)They only fire in short, controlled bursts. Previous Close Combats always felt like ammunition was scarce, but here I always seem to have more than enough.

5. Another issue I noticed, which is related mostly to bad unit positioning, is that if I place a MG team (particularly German teams) on an elevated area with clear lines of sight, inside of a hedgerow, I just don't feel any effect from them. They don't seem to make themselves useful even though they had clear lines of sight in deployment mode. In particular I refer to Operation Cobra's first map, where there are some small inclines on the map.

6. It feels like the MG42 is inaccurate at all ranges. I don't have any stats on this, but they just don't feel like the intimidating weapon they were.

Ultimately, it seems like an MG42 team against a rifle team in the bocage is more slanted against the Germans than the Americans, who can sometimes just walk right up to the German team and kill them with their Garands or bayonet them while they are on their bellies, whereas a German Command team hiding in a house can kill off multiple teams without taking more than a couple losses.

There are always exceptions, but it is difficult to find that "sweet spot" with the MG42 positioning, and I think that there are issues that need to be addressed.
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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/17/2019 5:07:57 AM   
STIENER

 

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Id say you have some valid concerns. the MG 34 and MG 42 have always been the scourge of the CC battle field...as is historical....till now? Steve Mcclair.....perhaps a look at this please?

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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/17/2019 3:37:26 PM   
Ezra

 

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I would agree. The German MG teams seem pretty tame. At least in the Normandy campaign they do. The hedgerow LOS issues are a bit frustrating as well. But then for rifle teams they seem to work well when put on defense directly behind the hedge.

< Message edited by Ezra -- 12/17/2019 3:38:59 PM >

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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/17/2019 10:10:40 PM   
Steve McClaire

 

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FYI -- the sound effects in CC1 and 2 had nothing to do with how many rounds of ammo were being fired or when. The actual 'shot' was still a set number of rounds (weapon burst size) fired instantaneously, even if the sound effect made it sound like two or three short bursts.

The riflemen in machine gun teams won't shoot unless the enemy is close (under 100m or so) so if you want the MG to do all the shooting try and engage at ranges further than this. Sometimes difficult in the hedgerows, I know.

Data values for MG34 and MG42 weapon accuracy is basically the same. One minor difference is that for automatic weapons there is an increasing dispersion for each round fired in a burst. So the last few rounds of an 7-9 round MG42 burst will 'spray' a little more than the 5-7 round bursts from the MG34. The accuracy of the initial round in the burst isn't effected by this though.

A heavy MG42 is the exact same weapon as a light MG42 except it's mounted on a tripod for better stability. Same with the MG34. The tripod is better for long range shooting and the heavy MG42/34s are a touch more accurate than their light counterparts. In close range hedgerow fighting you probably want more light machine guns for better mobility and quicker setup time.

There is a range where the gunner will no longer bother aiming, and thus fire much more often, but this isn't until you get down to close combat distances (5m or less IIRC.) I may look at extending this a bit for automatic weapons but obviously there's a balance to be struck there. Long bursts will be more suppressive but the chance of getting more hits is low.

Positioning behind hedgerows is basically the same as positioning behind low walls/fences, though it can be a little finicky because of steep raised ground the hedgerow terrain objects are placed on top of. This is something we'll definitely look at when time allows.






< Message edited by Steve McClaire -- 12/17/2019 10:12:13 PM >

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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/18/2019 2:01:41 AM   
Saturnian

 

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excellent. Thanks for addressing.

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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/18/2019 2:47:05 AM   
STIENER

 

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thanks for the reply Steve Mcclair. what im reading and understand from the other players posts is that the german LMG and HMG's dont shoot much. the german team deploys but the MG wont fire. usually only the rifle men in the team will fire...not the MG. it looks like the MG teams when deployed behind a hedge? in a hedge? perform even worse....IE: the MG wont shoot. when compared to an allied rifle team....the allied rifle team lays down more fire than a german MG team. the issue wasn't really when a german MG fired and what happens at certain ranges...it was the MG wont fire, or if it does the performance is very low. the german MG 42 should rule the battle field.

I would say something is out of wack here? wouldn't you? what do you think?

saturnian says...
1]MG is the last to fire / may not fire. positions with poor LOS. to slow moving around.
2] MG's do not default to the best firing position with in the team and LOS. they do not default in the hedge but behind it...thus they don't fire.
3]MG's don't seem to be effective against the enemy. they make some noise but don't do anything.
4]MG's don't seem to be effective against the enemy.....burst size too small?
5]MG's don't seem to be effective because of the way they position themselves to fire? even with clear LOS they seem to hit no one?
6] MG's are inaccurate at all ranges....not hitting anything.

allied rifle team lays down more accurate and better fire than a german MG 42.

< Message edited by STIENER -- 12/18/2019 3:00:10 AM >

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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/18/2019 4:09:47 PM   
Steve McClaire

 

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I think the MG42's performance in game, relative to the other types of machine guns, is roughly accurate. The MG42 was a good and effective weapon but it didn't win the war or rule every battle field.

As I said, the game mechanics for choosing individual soldier positions is the same for both sides. If there's a problem with positioning of unit gunners it is going to effect both sides equally, though the US relies more on individual riflemen with their M1s so it could be less of a hindrance for the US side in that manner. That's the part I said I would look into re: positioning around hedge rows. If you have specific examples of this and can post screenshots that would be helpful and appreciated. Thanks.


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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/19/2019 6:47:37 AM   
Saturnian

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Steve McClaire

I think the MG42's performance in game, relative to the other types of machine guns, is roughly accurate. The MG42 was a good and effective weapon but it didn't win the war or rule every battle field.

As I said, the game mechanics for choosing individual soldier positions is the same for both sides. If there's a problem with positioning of unit gunners it is going to effect both sides equally, though the US relies more on individual riflemen with their M1s so it could be less of a hindrance for the US side in that manner. That's the part I said I would look into re: positioning around hedge rows. If you have specific examples of this and can post screenshots that would be helpful and appreciated. Thanks.





I'd say that is fair enough at this point.

It may be that once positioning is fixed, the gameplay will be improved.

However, I do think that hedgerows seem to offer less coverage than in previous games. Once you start firing your Mausers and occasionally zapping with the MG42, the enemy will very shortly kill your team off. So the amount of cover hedgerows offer may need to be evaluated.

Take the below examples.

It is the best I could produce 'off the cuff', but granted the Americans have a tank, my teams had clear lines of sight and were concealed in the hedgerow and behind trees. Our forces were essentially matched. The MG42 clearly targeted the teams, but failed to effectively act and didn't lay down any sweeping firing, instead targeting soldiers individually and haltingly, when a traversing(sweeping from right to left) fire (I would imagine) would have been more effective. Sometimes it's just like, "man, you're only gonna live 5 more seconds, squeeze that trigger and cut them to pieces!"

It seems sometimes there is trouble with getting hits at close range as you can even have a machine gun firing at someone within feet and not make a hit even after hundreds of rounds.

The Americans took cover and took essentially no losses, I think 1 or 2 hits until they destroyed most of the force and then came close to the remains of the command team and took 2 more losses (the mp40 is more effective than the MG42 in hedgerows and I think is what inflicted half of the enemy losses.

< Message edited by Saturnian -- 12/19/2019 7:17:59 AM >

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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/19/2019 6:48:35 AM   
Saturnian

 

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Americans approach. Clear Lines of Sight. MG team can see the enemy in the field.



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< Message edited by Saturnian -- 12/19/2019 7:01:15 AM >

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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/19/2019 6:51:58 AM   
Saturnian

 

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It seems like my teams should have positioned themselves better to see the enemy to take advantage of the clear LOS.




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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/19/2019 6:57:32 AM   
Saturnian

 

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I manage to do the real damage at close range(if I'm LUCKY). But if I stayed in Ambush the MG42 would never have been able to be used for its intended purpose(medium range sweeping firepower).

I feel like the MG42 should be cutting across the enemy like a buzz saw, considering its high rate of fire. The enemy wouldn't even have a chance to take cover. But the here the gunner just targets one guy at a time, rather than maximizing the potential damage. Here there is much more painstaking targeting. They just don't seem responsive enough.

And I get that this example is pretty bad since there is a tank there and not all units were targeting at the same time.

but I hope you get the gist of what I am saying, because it would be next to impossible for all the units to target at the same time due to poor positioning in the hedgerows. They just don't maximize their LOS and the rows provide surprisingly poor cover.

And you'll notice that there is a tank hunter team in the house at the bottom. They actually ended up holding the enemy off better. I find that hiding soldiers in houses is more effective than hedgrows with open fields of fire.




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< Message edited by Saturnian -- 12/19/2019 7:22:16 AM >

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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/19/2019 7:09:41 AM   
Saturnian

 

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quote:

Then there is another example of a MG42 positioned in DEFEND mode for when any enemy units try to enter the crossroads, which was what I thought SHOULD be a "sweet spot" however, 3 American teams enter and my team is destroyed within seconds.


I get that there are many things to pick apart about my examples, but my experience is that when fighting in the bocage there is no 'winning strategy'

The MG42 and their teams just do not base their fighting around their primary armament.

And I get that this is easier said than done, because sometimes you don't want your best man to have maximum LOS because that makes them more of a target. But if they hide themselves and do not maximize the potential of their defensive position, then they cancel out their purpose on the battlefield.

But in either case, the German teams just don't last on the battlefield and the bocage does not give them good LOS or cover.

I can't find a realistic strategy. They don't lay down enough fire and die too quick.

I do think that improving positioning in hedgerows can solve at least half of this problem.

And I hope you guys know this is an awesome game and don't let sticklers like me get you down. I have high blood pressure and it serves me right that I do lol

below example I was hoping to pick off any teams that entered the crossroads, but they failed to lay down any effective fire on a totally vulnerable enemy. Another unit was position on the other side of the road, in a hedgerow, and also just did not manage to lay down any fire on the enemy though I think they also had decent lines of sight.




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< Message edited by Saturnian -- 12/19/2019 7:33:35 AM >

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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/19/2019 6:31:27 PM   
STIENER

 

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based on the above examples and the in depth description....I agree....theres an issue with the german MG. its glaringly obvious to me too that the MG doesn't put out enough fire onto the targets and inf caught in the open by an MG 42 would be in real trouble. in these scenario's that doesn't seem to be the case. when a pinned down rifle squad can easily take down an MG 42 team that's in a prepared position, thers an issue steve.

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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/19/2019 8:55:54 PM   
Steve McClaire

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Saturnian
I feel like the MG42 should be cutting across the enemy like a buzz saw, considering its high rate of fire...


Machine gun fire does target a single soldier in an enemy team (unless you're using area fire at the ground) and the game doesn't include searching / traversing fire for machine guns. That's something I'd like to add at some point but it is probably going to be in a future version.

I'll look at possibly lowering the machine gunner aim time at closer ranges as well. This would increase volume of fire and suppression, though I wouldn't expect a lot more hits.



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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/20/2019 2:17:47 AM   
Saturnian

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Steve McClaire


quote:

ORIGINAL: Saturnian
I feel like the MG42 should be cutting across the enemy like a buzz saw, considering its high rate of fire...


Machine gun fire does target a single soldier in an enemy team (unless you're using area fire at the ground) and the game doesn't include searching / traversing fire for machine guns. That's something I'd like to add at some point but it is probably going to be in a future version.

I'll look at possibly lowering the machine gunner aim time at closer ranges as well. This would increase volume of fire and suppression, though I wouldn't expect a lot more hits.





Awesome!

and traverse fire would be a monumental change.

Thanks for listening.

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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/20/2019 3:12:15 AM   
STIENER

 

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does MG fire in TBF work the same as in say LSA or GTC steve??

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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/20/2019 7:06:26 AM   
GoodGuy

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: Saturnian


3. The guns only fire in short, controlled bursts, when laying down heavier fire would make so much more sense. Following CC2 a change was made in the CC series where the MG teams, particularly the Mg42, started doing its trademark Bzzzzt, bzzzt, bzzzzt. But if you play the original CC1 and CC2 there is a notable difference in how it sounds(it lays down a more sustained fire) and also how effective it is against enemy units. Now it seems to just ZAP the enemy, you don't really get the impression you are cutting through the enemy and shredding them to pieces. It is intimidating, but surely they must have done more than just zap the enemy with little buzzes.

4. The controlled bursts seem less accurate. The 'Bzzzzt' was great in CC3 because it was very ACCURATE, so this made the ZAPPING more tolerable. But now it feels extremely inaccurate and sporadic. So the unit is firing these inaccurate controlled bursts at a close enemy, rather than just laying it thick. This is even so for the heavy mg42 teams, which one would assume have less recoil and would be able to fire in more sustained bursts. ...

If the controlled bursts are indeed to conserve ammo, I don't find this necessary(granted I do only play 15 minute battles) since by the battle's end they rarely expend more than a quarter of their ammunition

6. It feels like the MG42 is inaccurate at all ranges. I don't have any stats on this, but they just don't feel like the intimidating weapon they were.

Ultimately, it seems like an MG42 team against a rifle team in the bocage is more slanted against the Germans than the Americans, who can sometimes just walk right up to the German team and kill them with their Garands or bayonet them while they are on their bellies, whereas a German Command team hiding in a house can kill off multiple teams without taking more than a couple losses.

There are always exceptions, but it is difficult to find that "sweet spot" with the MG42 positioning, and I think that there are issues that need to be addressed.



Good points, as the tripods offered way more accuracy. Actually, the Heavy MGs (MG 42 on a tripod) were so accurate that they could be used for sniping (by firing single rounds). The tripod had buffer springs to reduce the recoil, and 2 diff. telescopic sights (for indirect fire, range: up to 3,500 meters) were available, and it could also be equipped with a 4x scope for direct fire (late in the war). There were confirmed "sniper" kills at up to around 1,000 - 1,200 meters, firing single rounds and using such scopes.
On short and medium distances short Heavy MG bursts were very accurate, but even during sustained fire the accuracy was quite ok, due to the reduced recoil.

Re cutting through enemies: the MG 42 could provide 1,500 rounds/min., so quite some units fired bursts only, in order not to be forced to change the barrel every few belts (they carried 5 replacement barrels) and to conserve ammunition. Later in the war, the inside of the MG barrels were chromium plated, which reduced wear/tear but didn't touch the problem with overheating barrels. The Brits were better off with their oil- or water-cooled Vickers, if it came to extensive usage (sustained fire).

Still, an Allied unit trying a frontal attack on a MG 42 would have failed, the German MG team would have mowed them down, indeed. The only way to knock out such a position was to force the team to fire constantly (and to overheat the barrel, means to wait until they had to change the barrel (which could be replaced in a very short time, though).

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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/20/2019 8:12:04 AM   
STIENER

 

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I agree with Goodguy on this topic.

that's why im wondering if the german MGS work the same as the in the other CC games? IE: LSA and GTC? because in those games and every other CC I have played...the MG 42 is a killing machine...especially when caught in the open.
and from what I have read etc...including first hand accounts from both sides ...the MG 42 was very very effective.

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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/20/2019 8:57:27 PM   
Steve McClaire

 

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quote:

ORIGINAL: STIENER
does MG fire in TBF work the same as in say LSA or GTC steve??


Yes, if you mean the 'burst is aimed at one soldier' and 'no search/traverse' that was the same in the old engine.


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RE: Bocage German Performance - 12/21/2019 1:37:26 AM   
STIENER

 

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@Steve.......Hmmmm...ok. so is anything else different?

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