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The problem is not the assault rule
11-07-2008, 10:41 PM, (This post was last modified: 11-07-2008, 10:42 PM by John Given.)
#31
RE: The problem is not the assault rule
I personally prefer the idea the following units ONLY being able to call in artillery;

a. Commanders (the fact that higher-rated commanders require larger sp's of vehicles to carry them seems to indicate they have "staff" accompanying them; the staff / aides would almost certainly have radios)

b. HQ's (but who would risk it?)

c. Company commander platoons ("Radio" icon) for all nations, armored or infantry

d. ALL German, British, and U.S. combat vehicles - perhaps Soviet units from 1943 onwards

e. Spotter aircraft

f. Ships (but not boats or rafts)

It should be noted that I love the idea of having forward observer units being used, but not to giving them any special abilities. A German FO halftrack, for example, would be much like a PSW 221 armored car, with similar armor and weaponry - nothing wrong with a little extra variety. If others feel this clutters things a bit, keep in mind that I sometimes play against the computer with a corps-sized force. What's a few extra units when you already control over 800? But I admot that in this capacity, these FO units. as I envision them, would not change the game tactically in all likelihood. It's all about variety.

And for the record, I do consider myself a "realism" style of player - I don't like things that are "gamey."
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11-08-2008, 12:46 AM,
#32
RE: The problem is not the assault rule
John,

I like your list except maybe for the vehicles. They typical tank only had a short-range radio designed to talk with their platoon/company. They weren't typically tied into a larger radio network. Command tanks (not sure if it was platoon, company or battalion level) did typically have longer range radios for talking with higher command. So, it might be better to limit arty to armored leaders (particularly the new leader in a tank) or HQ tank sections, similar to the infantry.

If it were up to me, I'd probably not give HTs the ability to call in arty. I am not sure that they even had radios, and they were probably not tied into any sort of command net if they were. It would make the most sense that they would rely on the attached infantry to make those sorts of support calls.

Not sure about recon vehicles. They certainly would have longer range radios intended to communicate with HQ and maps, but I am not sure it is really in their typical mission profile. Since they did sometimes support combat actions (especially the Germans), it probably makes sense to have them able to call in arty.

Mike
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11-08-2008, 02:04 AM,
#33
RE: The problem is not the assault rule
I like your list except maybe for the vehicles. They typical tank only had a short-range radio designed to talk with their platoon/company. They weren't typically tied into a larger radio network. Command tanks (not sure if it was platoon, company or battalion level) did typically have longer range radios for talking with higher command. So, it might be better to limit arty to armored leaders (particularly the new leader in a tank) or HQ tank sections, similar to the infantry.

Very good point - I was aware non-command vehicles had only short-wave radios, but they could radio coordinates up the chain of command. Still, you have a point.

If it were up to me, I'd probably not give HTs the ability to call in arty. I am not sure that they even had radios, and they were probably not tied into any sort of command net if they were. It would make the most sense that they would rely on the attached infantry to make those sorts of support calls.

Check this out: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SdKfz_253 Many different types of halftracks carried radios. I think the only exception would be the pure transport halftracks - the unarmed and unarmored ones.

I would think recon vehicles could call in artillery for the same reason tanks could - radios. I made the reference to the Psw 221 because the above FO halftrack is fully enclosed and has a smaller profile, yet is only armed with a machine-gun. This would discourage players from using them in combat, it would seem to me.
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11-08-2008, 02:52 AM,
#34
RE: The problem is not the assault rule
Presumably all the same arguments holds true for calling in airstrikes?

Or should we assume that air strikes represent CAP targets of opportunity?

umbro
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11-08-2008, 04:22 AM,
#35
RE: The problem is not the assault rule
When I suggested HTs not be able to call in arty, I was thinking of the more run-of-the-mill Sdkfz 250/251s. I don't think the average 250/251 had any kind of long-range radio. Command half-tracks might have had them, but I would worry about essentially double-counting the leader by letting a command HT unit and its associated leader (either company HQ or an actual leader unit) both have arty spotting ability, particularly among people who use HTs as raiders/scouts/etc. widely separated from their infantry.

Given the sheer number of HT units in some scenarios it would make the whole point of restricting on-call targetted artillery much less effective. For example, an armored infantry company would go from 1 unit (possibly 2 if they get a company leader) to call in arty to 4.

Now, you do bring up a good point that special-purpose HT units (FOs, recon, etc.) probably should be able to spot artillery. As you also said, non-combat HTs (e.g. prime movers) should definitely not be able to call in arty.

Umbro,

I have mixed feelings on airstrikes. You do call them in, but they are always subject to scatter. So, I am not sure they need the same attention, unless calling in airstrikes from spotter units actually increased their accuracy or decreased their response time somehow.
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11-08-2008, 04:36 AM,
#36
RE: The problem is not the assault rule
The problem that we are left with in all these cases is that we have not modelled the radical difference between western artillery flexibility and soviet inflexibility as the soviets will have just as many arty spotters as everyone else.

Scenario designers could add leaders to one side, but they have an additional effect on combat operations. Furthermore, this does not address existing scenarios.

Perhaps adding HTs to the spot list could be an abstract way of achieving this differentiation? Plus, it would make them more valuable and less likely to be used ahistorically?

umbro
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11-08-2008, 05:24 AM,
#37
RE: The problem is not the assault rule
I am not sure that making HT's one of a smaller group of spotting type units will support historical gameplay. I see it where HTs, after dropping off their infantry, will race all over the place (including deep strikes around/behind the lines) looking for juicy artillery targets. They'll be everywhere but near their related infantry which can spot for itself somewhat.

As far as incorporating nationality differences into the arty routines. The best suggestion I saw so far was Huib's where ammo level would be split out into two numbers, one for artillery and one for regular ammo. That way a scenario designer could set the arty level at something fairly low, say 20-30%, for the Soviet side without totally messing with the regular soviet troops combat effectiveness. They'd still the capability to call in more indirect fire than historically, but the overall effect of Soviet artillery would be lessened.

It might also make the Soviet player to "save up" his artillery for fewer, larger barrages while his various arty units work to regain supply, which would a little closer to the way the Soviets used artillery. It would simulate the long delays Combat Mission places on soviet off-board artillery pretty well, actually.
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11-08-2008, 05:27 AM,
#38
RE: The problem is not the assault rule
umbro Wrote:The problem that we are left with in all these cases is that we have not modelled the radical difference between western artillery flexibility and soviet inflexibility as the soviets will have just as many arty spotters as everyone else.

Still IMO it's better than not having a spotter system

umbro Wrote:Scenario designers could add leaders to one side, but they have an additional effect on combat operations. Furthermore, this does not address existing scenarios.

Perhaps we should forget about existing scenarios. They can be played with other optional rules (provided that the changes are programmed in such a way) until someone adjusts them. Virtually every change to the game will affect old scenarios. That should not be a "show stopper".

umbro Wrote:Perhaps adding HTs to the spot list could be an abstract way of achieving this differentiation? Plus, it would make them more valuable and less likely to be used ahistorically?
That doesn't seem like a good idea to me. Using a HT as a spotter is quite a-historical already. But the base of the idea seems good: give the Russians less types that can spot, or is the HT the only type they don't have?
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11-08-2008, 05:38 AM, (This post was last modified: 11-08-2008, 05:39 AM by Hawk Kriegsman.)
#39
RE: The problem is not the assault rule
I am all for the artillery suggestions as layed out here with one exception.

As I understand it when an artillery unit has the low ammo symbol it more represents the artillery unit being out of communication with the FO's / HQ's etc than not actually having a pile of shells lying about.

Artillery units need to be able to utilize direct fire at anytime. Otherwise the artillery units are nearly defenseless.

You start giving artillery units real low ammo levels and you run the risk of an increase in gamey tactics with deep raids using half tracks and the like.

Besides there is nothing more fun than balsting your opponents deep behind the lines armored car with a 105 battery!!

Thanx!

Hawk
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11-08-2008, 05:47 AM,
#40
RE: The problem is not the assault rule
If anyone needs some info?
A couple helpful sites that may enlighten:

http://www.poeland.com/tanks/artillery/doctrine.html
General overview of Doctrine and FO make up per nationality.

And from Lone Sentry:
http://www.lonesentry.com/articles/ttt/a...rvers.html
Description of German FO and an example of use on the Eastern Front. Includes an interesting comment on artillery effects on armor. Sounding more like disrupts than disabled/destroyed. :smoke:

Scale and use would be factors.

Ed
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