Line-support units

Discussion in 'CO2 - Game Support' started by ghibli, Nov 3, 2017.

  1. ghibli

    ghibli Member

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    Hi all,

    I've always had problems with how the AI is handling support units. More precisely those with line-support combat class ones. Those, according to manuals should be units with direct fire that follow closely line troops during assaults (and in general, I would expect to be moved by the AI where needed) such as AT guns, flak guns, self propelled guns, heavy machine guns... I think however the AI employs them just as "support" units, which are mostly indirect fire units. The result is that in assaults they just sit near HQs doing nothing, if the FUP is not in direct line of sight with enemies; in defence they are not used (moved) by AI.

    Is just me having this impression? Do they work as intended? Any advice to have the AI use them properly?
    Thanks
     
  2. Bie

    Bie Member

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    It depends.

    In assault tasks, yes, they will be kept towards the back at the HQ. I think it is because assaults are (obviously) very mobile and AT/AA guns and the sorts need to deploy in order to shoot. Couple this with orders delay and deploying a units will probably always be to late.

    In defensive tasks this is not really a problem and mostly if you give a defend order the HQ will designate a decent spot for those units.

    Either way, I most of the time take command of those units myself. In an offensive role (if possible) I'll put AT/AA guns on higher ground and in cover so they can give unrestricted cover fire. Or when they are hanging back at the HQ and the assault of the frontline units stalls I send them forward to support the troops.
     
  3. Dave 'Arjuna' O'Connor

    Dave 'Arjuna' O'Connor Panther Games Designer

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    The AI will deploy those line support units in the assault and they will drop off as they approach the objective, deploy and start firing. But often they are assigned to the reserve task. To increase the likelihood of them being assigned to an assault, set the Aggro for the attack task to Max.
     
  4. ghibli

    ghibli Member

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    I am experimenting a bit..tried setting Aggro to Max, no effect (tried several times). Tried to change the class type in the Estab from "line-support" to "line"; they actually are able to assault independently when ordered to, but in any combination with other ("real") line troops just remain in place and do not partecipate in the assault. Maybe the AI is smart enough to keep them far from the front line independently from the defined class, but sometime it would be useful to have them close. That would make complex assaults more interesting, and high order HQs more useful
     
  5. john connor

    john connor Member

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    There's been a long history of asking Dave to make code changes to make sure, precisely, that non-line troops were not up front during assaults, and many code changes to try to perfect that over a number of years - during CO1 as well as CO2. I think it's working fine now (for assaults - Move orders still need some refining). In the not-so-distant past we used to see mortars and guns (and even HQs) getting shredded up front - now they generally keep back. They're vulnerable units. What I would ideally want mortars, machine guns, AT guns etc to do is stay back with fields of fire into the enemy FLOT, if possible, but if not, still stay back. Above all, as a default, stay back. If the player wants to change that he/she can give direct orders that will stand a higher chance of keeping the unit covered and useful, I think.

    It seems to me, in any event, that you see separate support units in the the estabs much less now (more elements are incorporated into the line units instead) and I think, at this level of simulation, it's sometimes not ideal to have such small units separated out.

    It would be useful if you could post pictures illustrating exactly what you're drawing attention to, ghibli. And keep saves. I'm not sure what it is exactly that you want these units to do. Are you saying they stay too far back to fire into the enemy? Do they never fire? Or too little? Pictures would be great.
     
  6. ghibli

    ghibli Member

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    I think it's difficult to discuss such complex things on a forum, I would try sticking to the manual for terms and post a few pictures. I tried issuing an assault task with Peiper Regt, St Vith scenario several times (line and successive lines formations) and this is what happened in the set up phase:

    Line1.png SuccLines2.png
    Indirect fire support units are: Art battalion, Art company and Mortar platoon. Of this only the first fired to support the attack, the second was outside range from the attacked area all the time, the Mortar platoon assaulted with its battalion (support filler) but didn't fire even when in range.

    Direct fire units: IG platoon and three AA companies. They all keep staying around the FUP or behind it outside field of view and fire (the FUP is chosen before a small hill for hiding purpose). Some of those units receive a line-filler role, others a rear guard. None of them partecipate in the assault.

    Line troops: they all attack as supposed to; checking the role status in their battalions some of them get a line-filler status, some other get none but there is no real difference with advance and main guard status.
    The role status disappear from most of the supporting troops (don't know if that means anything).

    So what I am suggesting is:

    1) Make most of line-support units follow the assaulting line troops (like as line-filler, support-filler?), not covering gaps between guard assigned troops but directly behind them. The Aggro level could be used to weigh the distance so that max would make them stick closer (taking into account Bn and Coy commanders decisions of course). I would link the Aggro level to the commitment of line units rather then support ones, so that even low and medium Aggro attacks would receive enough support to cover the advance of those line troops that lack heavy weapons (having more and more line troops is not as helpful as the combination of less troops+support). AA guns however are mainly meant for AA defence so some should cover the attack while others should be kept in key locations.

    2) As the complexity of assaults increase (with HQ echelon level) one tends to place the FUP further from the final assault area. It would be nice if lower echelon HQs could follow up their troops from a (very) safe distance, to represent the need to keep eye or radio contact.

    3) The assignment of guns and mortars to companies organic is fine. However some motorised troops, Panzergrenadieren for instance have a great deal of vehicles that tend to get obliterated soon. These maybe could be detached from their infantry as they approach the designed area of attack.
     

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