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Reconnaissance by artillery

 
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Reconnaissance by artillery - 9/26/2001 9:05:00 PM   
asgrrr

 

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Has anyone used this method to find out where the enemy lies in wait? I am talking about that the game announces casualties to unspotted units. So if you are advancing, just lob a few heavy shells into suspect locations. It will soon reveal whether anyone is there.

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- 9/26/2001 9:23:00 PM   
Larry Holt

 

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You can't count on this but if it occurs it is useful. Not necessarily realistic but useful.

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- 9/26/2001 10:53:00 PM   
panda124c

 

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quote:

Originally posted by Larry Holt:
You can't count on this but if it occurs it is useful. Not necessarily realistic but useful.
I find it useful for finding mine fields, and suspected positions, tops of hills, victory squares, etc. pound them for a couple of turns and you start seeing messages saying units are retreating or popping smoke.

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- 9/27/2001 12:15:00 AM   
Grumble

 

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quote:

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
You can't count on this but if it occurs it is useful. Not necessarily realistic but useful.

True, but for US forces at least, throwing rounds at suspected targets was not uncommon, looking for signs of secondaries, displacement etc.
Not really as detailed as one gets here, but a plausible, "gamey", way to demonstrate that tactic.

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- 9/27/2001 3:11:00 AM   
AmmoSgt

 

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I can understand Minefields in line of sight being revealed and even partically cleared from arty fire .. but any body count from unobserved arty fires should be deleted from the info bar at the bottom of the map IMHO ..ok maybe if ya have a Tank or ammo dump or something go up high order ..maybe .. but bodycounts ?? naw, that should be strictly Fog of War

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- 9/27/2001 4:32:00 AM   
john g

 

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quote:

Originally posted by Larry Holt:
You can't count on this but if it occurs it is useful. Not necessarily realistic but useful.
The following is from "The Armies of Rommel" by George Forty. Brushing the enemy aside the panzers pressed on, engaging in a favorite Rommel tactic (also favored by General George S. Patton, Jr) of firing on the move at likely targets as the column moved through the woods to Philippeville. This 'prophylactic' fire caused the enemy to 'tumble out of the woods' as Rommel puts it, all thouroughly unnerved after being repeatedly dive bombed. Later west of the Somme river:
Panzer battalions were on the front and flanks, the wheeled vehicles would be inside the rectangle. Tank guns would be traversed accordingly and 'prophylactic fire' on the move, would be aimed at suspected enemy positions. Using this method of advance Rommel moved his division some twenty miles during 6 and 7 June,... Directing he fire against a hex that might hold enemy troops has plenty of historical verification.
thanks, John. [ September 26, 2001: Message edited by: john g ]



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- 9/27/2001 6:20:00 AM   
asgrrr

 

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Johng: There is nothing wrong with shelling suspected positions. To do so against locations in line of sight could justifiably reveal enemies hiding there. But reporting each casualty, perhaps occurring behind a ridge, is obviously opening the door to cheating. If enemy units are indeed routed by such fire, and "tumble out of the woods", there is nothing wrong with that.

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- 9/28/2001 10:39:00 PM   
Rover

 

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So, it sounds like the suggestion is after a artillery strike to not show the casualty figures but if someone gets up and runs in the line of sight and is spotted that appropriate. If that's what is suggested I agree. On the artillery revealing minefield hex question I'd propose artillery doesn't reveal the effected hexes but still reduces the mine count. Having said that in real life do commanders get minefield info in this way (I assume by seeing mines detonate as the artillery hits). If so then I'd be fine with the revealing of minefield feature in the game today. R

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- 9/28/2001 10:48:00 PM   
lnp4668

 

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quote:

Originally posted by Rover:
So, it sounds like the suggestion is after a artillery strike to not show the casualty figures but if someone gets up and runs in the line of sight and is spotted that appropriate. If that's what is suggested I agree. On the artillery revealing minefield hex question I'd propose artillery doesn't reveal the effected hexes but still reduces the mine count. Having said that in real life do commanders get minefield info in this way (I assume by seeing mines detonate as the artillery hits). If so then I'd be fine with the revealing of minefield feature in the game today. R
I agree that artillery should not shows casulties. However, mine field should be reveal by artillery due to secondary explosions.

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- 9/28/2001 11:38:00 PM   
Charles2222


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Another thing about minefield detonations: If one detonates, regardless of how, it should reduce the mine count in the field, as it currently does by artillery, however, at least my experience has always been this way, when you run over a mine and it detonates on a unit it never subtracts that one blown mine from the total. A ten mine field, which blows ten times should remove that field, but instead after ten detonations it's still 10 mines strong.

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- 9/29/2001 12:29:00 AM   
john g

 

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quote:

Originally posted by Charles_22:
Another thing about minefield detonations: If one detonates, regardless of how, it should reduce the mine count in the field, as it currently does by artillery, however, at least my experience has always been this way, when you run over a mine and it detonates on a unit it never subtracts that one blown mine from the total. A ten mine field, which blows ten times should remove that field, but instead after ten detonations it's still 10 mines strong.
That 10 rating is not the actual number of mines, but the density of the field. It represents some AP mines, some AT mines, some dummy mines, and perhaps even some booby traps. If it were the case that this was the actual number, think about dragons teeth. If you only put one in the hex, or reduced it down to 1, a tank would have no trouble driving around it in a 50 yard hex. One dragons tooth factor will still stop vehicles from using the hex. An engineer unit clearing a hex of mines doesn't have to clear every single mine from the hex, they just have to clear a lane and mark it, so that units can traverse the hex safely.
thanks, John.

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- 9/29/2001 1:11:00 AM   
Charles2222


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john g: Perhaps you are right, perhaps 10 isn't indicative of ten mines, and this despite engineers needing only to clear 10 of 'whatever' before it's no threat, which you compensate by saying they can mark the field; fine. Only problem is, the number 10 is a finite number, it doesn't vary. Whatever it represents is what it is. If each number is 1 mine and 1 fake mine, so be it, but there are only 10 mines deadly to the units if I understand correctly. In any case, whatever the 10 represents, when one goes off, it's no longer a threat, be they fake or real. Now, what you say would make total sense, if, if, it were not for the artillery declining the number, because artillery doesn't mark the field like engineers any better then a mine going off does. If one mine is really 1, or 5, or 10, there should be a point where those dreadful penal battalions would not go to their grave's totally fruitlessly by there being no lessening of the extent of the minefield for their going over it. So why artillery reducing a minefield and not a tank (which actually may set off more than one mine, or series of mines)?

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- 9/29/2001 1:28:00 AM   
john g

 

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quote:

Originally posted by Charles_22:
Now, what you say would make total sense, if, if, it were not for the artillery declining the number, because artillery doesn't mark the field like engineers any better then a mine going off does. If one mine is really 1, or 5, or 10, there should be a point where those dreadful penal battalions would not go to their grave's totally fruitlessly by there being no lessening of the extent of the minefield for their going over it. So why artillery reducing a minefield and not a tank (which actually may set off more than one mine, or series of mines)?
But arty does'nt need to set off mines to clear the field. Imagine firing a spread of 155mm shells against an area thought to be mined. Some shells will impact near mines and will set them off. Others will impact and leave impact craters. Those impact craters will be traversable as clear areas, giving you an idea of where it is safe to move thru the area. The areas between the impact craters will still be suspect. For most of WWII the purpose of a minefield was not to cause casualties, it was to slow a force down long enough to allow fire to brought on the area. That is why dummy minefields or dummy mines inside a real minefield are still treated as if they are real. Just a rumor, like the one that the shoulders of the road were mined in XXX corps advance on Arnhem, is enough to foul operations. Just as each shot from an infantry unit is not really one bullet from each gun, I don't see mine factors as one mine equals one factor.
thanks, John.

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- 9/29/2001 4:29:00 AM   
asgrrr

 

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We are drifting off the topic a bit, hmmm? But this gives me pause. It seems that an ammunition type is missing from the game: Shrapnel shells. These are not regular HE shells. They have only just enough explosive content to open the casing, releasing a large number of pellets that continue moving in more or less the direction of the mother shell. In game terms, such a shell would have a high kill factor, but low warhead factor. The russian 85mm tank gun e.g. only had fragmentation rounds, no conventional HE. During WW1, Shrapnel shells were found to be particularly useful to remove barbed wire, and I would assume they would detonate many mines.

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- 9/29/2001 4:59:00 AM   
john g

 

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quote:

Originally posted by Penetrator:
We are drifting off the topic a bit, hmmm? But this gives me pause. It seems that an ammunition type is missing from the game: Shrapnel shells. These are not regular HE shells. They have only just enough explosive content to open the casing, releasing a large number of pellets that continue moving in more or less the direction of the mother shell. In game terms, such a shell would have a high kill factor, but low warhead factor. The russian 85mm tank gun e.g. only had fragmentation rounds, no conventional HE. During WW1, Shrapnel shells were found to be particularly useful to remove barbed wire, and I would assume they would detonate many mines.
Since the 85mm was based off of an AA gun, perhaps they were using time fused he rounds just like the German 88 could use. What you are thinking of would be better referred to as cannister rounds. They live on in the flechette rounds used since the 60's to stop human wave attacks. Wild Bill modified the 37mm guns in one of his scenarios to show the effect of this type of round. I disagree in how you would represent them, they act as a large shotgun, plenty of warheads but little he effect when hitting. Though with the new code in v7 tying multihex effect to warhead size (see message about reducing aircraft bombs), a large warhead round would impact mutiple hexes something akin to the claymore in SPI's Patrol. Airburst shrapnel rounds should do the same though the last data I saw on them showed them as ineffective, despite the ability to have fragments penetrate pine boards in a target area, when a round went off in a demonstration, none of the personnel in the affected area were injured. Treetop he bursts are another story. Many wounded have been reported due to he rounds bursting as they hit trees showering the troops below with wooden splinters and metal fragments. The same sort of injuries that used to be common when men fought each other in sailing ships.
thanks, John.

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- 9/29/2001 6:47:00 AM   
asgrrr

 

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No sir, a canister shot is a different type still. It ruptures on discharge, whereas a Shrapnel round only ruptures on impact.
But we seem to come back to the abstract notion of warhead size which I have touched on in topic "mortar shells". In my mind this variable is most closely related to the amount of explosive matter in a shell, which gives it the ability to affect targets a long distance from the point of impact, by pressure blast and the propulsion of shell and soil fragments. With fragmentation/Shrapnel shells there is very little blast effect and the propulsion of fragments in other direction than that of the shell is also small. Thus, one would reflect such an impact as a weapon with a small warhead size. On the other hand there is a large number of heavy and lethal fragments flying, thus a great chance of hurting someone close to the impact - a large HE kill factor.

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- 9/29/2001 7:47:00 AM   
Khan7

 

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The way I have understood shrapnel shells is that they became quite popular leading up to and during the Napoleonic Wars, though not being particularly common until some time after those wars had concluded (the Brits were the first to get in on this technology). The shell was essentially the same construct as the standard bursting shell of the day, but instead of propellant the majority was filled with lead balls. The ability to deliver canister/grapeshot-like effects at greater ranges was a great asset to artillery of that day (though canister, when in range, would still be much more feared). Later in the 19th Century there emerged another British invention, the cylindrical artillery round, first implemented to fit more warhead into the same bore size for their new, enormous, rifled naval guns. Soon of course this principle was applied to all artillery, and the Shrapnel shell lived about the same, though with somewhat changed shape, and later with even more sophisticated fuses than Shrapnel (he was an actual guy) had devised. This is the shrapnel shell that went into WW1 and was a miserable failure. As someone said, it was somewhat useful for clearing barbed wire, but had almost no effect on infantry in cover, and were practically incapable of affecting trenches. So to my knowledge the style of shell was quickly abandoned/modified during WW1 (leading to the rise of shells that emphasized more explosive power [ergo High Explosive]), and hasn't been seen on major battlefields since (though obviously the concept is still put to use in many ways). Matt

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- 9/29/2001 8:36:00 AM   
gators

 

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I just finished reading a book about Brunchmuller "breakthrough" Muller as the German infantry called him. It's titled Steel Wind and anyone who wants to understand how to use artillery better might be very intrested. This book also states that shrapnel shells were obselete before the end of WWI. The other material deals with neutralization versus destruction, predicted fires, to register or not to register etc, etc. A very interesting book about an interesting figure in the history of WWI and artillery.

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- 10/1/2001 11:26:00 PM   
Rover

 

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On a separate but related topic... having thought about this some more (and played some this weekend) I also think the end of turn messaging about how many enemy units are retreating should be removed. I find this info helps me understand how effective artillery is and/or the enemies condition in general. I think I should only be able gain info based on what I can see happening. I also don't think I should know the enemy has been broken from messaging either. Basic common sense may get you to the same conclusion but think there's a vast difference between the two. R

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- 10/1/2001 11:53:00 PM   
AmmoSgt

 

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Good Point Rover .. I agree ..I never did understand why unspotted units that are retreating would pop smoke to atract attention to themselves ...much less announce that they are retreating

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- 10/2/2001 12:13:00 AM   
m10bob


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It's not that i'm trying to rationalize,but consider this..the messages of casualties may very well represent(abstractly) "enemy radio traffic" of incoming rounds and the incumbent losses of same.while the messages do say "x" number of casualties,we still don't know if these are all from the same squad or if we've hit the middle of a whole troop concentration.imho,only individual experience will guarantee an accurate interpretation of the losses,and as for the "smoke", the enemy is popping it because they presume they *HAVE* been spotted!!.."travel fire" was used effectively (when it could be done affordibly)........

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- 10/2/2001 6:56:00 AM   
AmmoSgt

 

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Bob yeah I agree that it is helpful info , but is it realistic?? thats the question ..

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- 10/2/2001 10:20:00 AM   
Khan7

 

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Unspotted cas-reports-- bunk, for all reasons that have been stated.. 'nuf said. Unless they try to go beyond the limits of the game scope and engine and add a whole new intelligence and espionage dimension.. Report on enemy morale condition-- considering the lack of any of the other myriad of indicators you would have to this in a real situation, the reporting of enemy morale broken is IMO a perfectly fine game feature, and is probably better that way. My $0.02 Matt

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