I thought I would start a dedicated artillery thread, as I think it would be useful to exchange information about how the AI operates artillery on behalf of players. When I started playing Command Ops I micro-managed artillery and found that by doing so it was pretty much impossible not to win, so I limited myself to Corps artillery management but still found it difficult to lose. So noting that John Connor's advice on the sitrep thread, I have played a few games now without touching my artillery. I have also pasted below Keydet's questions as these focus on the AI's artillery management. The games I have played without artillery are now much tougher, but like Keydet, I have noted that some of my artillery never seems to fire at all, so I was wondering whether it is possible to increase the possibility of the AI calling in artillery. So: 1. Battalion attached mortars seem to engage relatively regularly which is fine; 2. Therefore, do I increase the possibility of a division or corps artillery battalion engaging if I attach it to a particular battalion to which I have given a mission? My experience is that does seem to be the case or at least it will normally fire at targets close to the unit to which it is attached rather than elsewhere. 3. Do I decrease the possibility of a division or corps artillery battalion engaging if I give it a move and defend order to a particular location and leave it unattached thereafter? This does seem to be the case. 4. Similarly if I leave the artillery battalion attached to a division or corps HQ, and then detach battalions of that division to carry out missions, my experience is that the artillery battalion won't or is less likely to carry out indirect fire missions. 5. If I attach the artillery battalion to a brigade HQ, it does sometimes fire, even if the brigade's battalions are detached in order to carry out missions. But the fire missions may not be in support of the brigade's battalions. 6. Query therefore whether the separation of a line battalion / battlegroup from a brigade HQ means that enemy units sighted by that line battalion / battlegroup won't be engaged by artillery units attached to brigade HQ - ie. does the separation prevent artillery requests moving up from units within the battalion / battlegroup to brigade HQ? To counter this possibility I tend to re-attach battalions back to brigade HQs as soon as they have completed a mission - but note the brigade HQ must have a defend in situ order to prevent the battalion / battlegroup then being ordered back to the brigade HQ's location. I don't know however whether re-attaching battalions / battlegroups back to brigade HQs in this way actually does have any effect on artillery requests passing back to the brigade HQ. 6. Interestingly, the AI does not seem to move the player's artillery battalions when they are attached to units that have been given a move or attack order, save in order to keep them within range of the unit to which they are attached. This is in contrast to the AI side's own artillery which often moves inappropriately into close combat zones. On the other hand the AI side's own artillery seems to be more likely to fire indirectly as well. Keydet's questions: "There are a number of things about fire support that sinks my pinball. [I too think it should be left to AI but I don't] The concerns are: 1. There is no transparency to what the AI is doing with My fire support. I don't know nor can I set the priorities of fire. 2. I have no ability to build and manage a fire support plan 3. Final protective fires in the defense can't be set much less know which units have which FS units giving the FPF. 4. FS unit logs don't have each fire request/fire mission described with Target description http://www.poeland.com/tanks/artillery/targets.html, mission (suppress, destroy, etc), sheaf used http://www.poeland.com/tanks/artillery/sheafs.html, and FO results report. 5. the logs of requesting units don't report instances FS request made and result fired or denied (and why: no comm, ammo rationed, no tubes available, etc?)." My comments: these points all seem to be correct, unless anyone else knows better. The only way to get round these points is by using the artillery manually. "6. There is not a FS realism slider like orders delay: perfect world to realistic. 7, In every game I see some battalion mortars never fire for any of its battalions engagements which is inexplicable while most other battalions have near 100% response.." My comments: My experience is that battalion mortars seem to be more active than other artillery units but there may be units where battalion mortars don't engage. Theoretically the better trained / experienced units should presumably be more effective at getting their battalion mortars to engage but I don't know if that is actually the case. "8. Some regiments never succeed in getting any of the attached artillery to fire while others get near 100% response." My comments: this is my experience. Currently playing Meuse to Rhine as allies. Guards Armoured divisional artillery is very rarely engaging whereas 43rd division, 1st Airborne and 101st Para artillery does seem to engage. "9. Artillery battalions are dragged around by the HQ's these are supporting rather than independently considering the missions and locations of supported units, ranges, lines of communications. and enemy actions and locations." My comments: This does seem to happen occasionally but not always. This is fine if the artillery battalion is close to being or is out of range the unit to which it is attached. It is annoying when it happens when the artillery is well within range. "10. Artillery battalions with ongoing support missions don't move by batteries." Not sure I understand this point. Anyone's thoughts on how to get the best performance from your own artillery without using it manually would be welcome.