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Email from FFG re Artillery and structures - now it is clear as mud! :-)


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#1 felkor

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Posted 20 September 2011 - 08:56 AM

Got this email just now:from FFG in response to my rules question.

 

> Can artillery units fire at units inside buildings?
Yes, as long as the targeted unit is on a space next to an exit in the direction of the attack from the artillery unit. In this case, the targeted unit would gain Hard Cover against the attack from the artillery unit.



#2 Loophole Master

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Posted 20 September 2011 - 09:02 AM

 I've also gotten a response to the questions I sent almost 2 months ago:

- Can a walker outside use Direct Fire against a target inside a building, next to an exit?
Yes. As long as the targeted unit is on a space next to an exit in the direction of the attack from the artillery unit. In this case, the targeted unit would gain Hard Cover against the attack from the artillery unit.

- Can a walker outside use Indirect Fire against a target deep inside a building, in sight of an Observer?
No. The targeted unit must be on a space with an exit in the direction of the attack. Even though the observer squad can see the target, the artillery shells follow a parabolic trajectory from the direction of the artillery unit. When targeting a unit that is not near an exit in the direction of the attack, the artillery shells would impact the roof of the structure and not hit the targeted unit.

- Can a walker inside a hangar use artillery against a target inside that same building?
No. Artillery weapons fire in a parabolic trajectory. Any artillery weapons fired from inside a structure would hit the ceiling of that structure and explode, making it very dangerous for the artillery unit!

- Can a walker inside a hangar use artillery against a target outside the building or inside a different building?
No. Same as above.

 

While they do make clear that you CANNOT fire artillery weapons from inside a building in any situation, the fact that the squad gets hard cover for standing inside a building next to an exit really contradicts the "artillery ignores cover" rule.



#3 felkor

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Posted 20 September 2011 - 09:04 AM

Well, at least they clarified for structures.

But yeah, to say they get hard cover makes no sense if artillery ignores cover.  They need to clarify.  I sent back an email to the person who emailed me and mentioned that what he said contradicts the FAQ.  We'll see if he responds.



#4 felkor

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Posted 20 September 2011 - 09:06 AM

I wish they gave me as clear of an answer as they gave you.  My answer was so short and missed mentioning anything about what makes artillery special, it sounded like he didn't understand the question.



#5 Loophole Master

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Posted 20 September 2011 - 09:14 AM

 And I find it strange that the walker cannot fire at a target outside the building. I guess I should have asked specifically about a walker STANDING NEXT TO AN EXIT......  Man, you really have to phrase your questions carefully here if you expect to get any kind of useful answer.



#6 felkor

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Posted 20 September 2011 - 09:15 AM

Loophole Master said:

 And I find it strange that the walker cannot fire at a target outside the building. I guess I should have asked specifically about a walker STANDING NEXT TO AN EXIT......  Man, you really have to phrase your questions carefully here if you expect to get any kind of useful answer.

 

Yes, I would think if the tail end of the parabola can hit someone in the entrance to a building, then the other end of the same parabola would work too, and a walker should be able to fire from inside a building at the exit.



#7 Loophole Master

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Posted 20 September 2011 - 09:21 AM

 My reasoning exactly.



#8 felkor

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Posted 20 September 2011 - 09:26 AM

I wonder if this means I'll hear back about my rules question about the Victory Bridge scenario with the walker stuck in the building with too small of doors.



#9 Loophole Master

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Posted 20 September 2011 - 09:30 AM

 It seems they took care of a batch of questions. Almost simulatenously I got the answer for this question, which I made in August 1st and also my Loth question which I made 2 weeks ago.



#10 Gimp

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Posted 20 September 2011 - 10:02 AM

I find it humorous that they mention artillery firing directly, but they make all of it effectively indirect with the minimum range requirements.

Some artillery (infantry mortars and rockets) only fires on a high parabolic path.  Other, tubed artillery can fire a high indirect path or a direct fire attack without a minimum range.  The petard mortar being a turret mounted gun with a minimum range is rather silly for me as an ex-artilleryman.  

WW2 short barreled assault guns were capable of both direct and indirect fire, with indirect fire having a possibility of a minimum range, but direct fire being something they could use to defend themselves, or bring fire directly on a nearby target. 

The petard works within the game, even if it makes no sense as other than an oversimplification.

Not firing artillery from within a building when they don't acknowledge direct fire as other than self-observed indirect fire makes sense.

Not firing down through a roof from outside artillery works as a simplification that doesn't require rules to figure out how solid a roof is.

Giving cover to a unit on the edge of a building from artillery would work, except that it contradicts the artillery ignores cover ruling.  Of course, while I don't have the original rulebook, the artillery ignores cover ruling only exists in the FAQ from what I have.

Cover helps against blasts, but not always.  An air burst can ignore a lot of things that would protect against a ground burst.  Corner cover would be no help against any artillery or grenade burst.  Artillery ignoring cover is the quickest way to deal with the variables, so hopefully they'll amend their answer to not giving cover to a unit in an entrance attacked by artillery.



#11 Major Mishap

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Posted 20 September 2011 - 10:39 AM

Today must have been the bi-annual answer questions day, got mine too, same Q's as Loopy.  The problem with artillery, I think, stems from their assumption that all artillery shots, all the time, lob missiles in the air which is incorrect.  At close range they would fire just like any other gun.  In games terms the Artillery rules should really only be used with indirect fire and no minimum range for direct fire.  But they like the rules simple so no artllery fire if in a building, at a door and firing out.

And as for the hard cover save when at a window, I guess the guy must have got a bit beffudled and got it wrong.  Ahhh, mind you, the new rules do not say that artillery ignore cover, so maybe the FAQ which covered the original artillery rules is now out of date and artillery does not ignore cover at all? 



#12 Gimp

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 12:21 PM

It would be odd if they decided artillery blasts didn't ignore cover, yet phaser blasts, grenades, and flamethrowers did.

A 155mm artillery shell is close to 100 pounds of explosive, which is a lot more than a grenade.  Even an 81mm mortar is firing more explosives than a grenade.

I'm thinking the answer guy forgot artillery ignores cover, and was only thinking about where in a building artillery could attack a unit.



#13 Peacekeeper_b

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 12:40 PM

Maybe the intention is that cover provided from being inside a building is a invulnerable save and is never ignored, but cover from corners, ammo crates, tank traps can be ignored. I always assumed the cover from being inside a building as a easy out of worrying about room to room, hallways, furniture and other debris in the building and just gave a flat out cover save.



#14 Gimp

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 02:03 PM

I can see justification for cover from a building for artillery, but if they're going to make an exception for it, it should cover any blast and the flamethrowers, or none of them.  No cover for all area attacks works for simplicity, but there needs to be consistency for building cover if they want to make an exception.



#15 Major Mishap

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 07:53 PM

There is a big difference between artillery and the other weapons.  Grenades and flamethrower were designed specifically to clear out infantry in cover with accurate close-rang shots of grenades through windows of flame through pill box slots - it's their job.  On the other hand the rule writers assumed that every inaccurate, long range artillery shot that can't even see its target always lands perfectly the other side of the cover the infantry are hiding behined and this is just not true, the first thing any soldier does is dive for cover, cover does have an effect against artillery.



#16 Peacekeeper_b

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Posted 21 September 2011 - 11:54 PM

Major Mishap said:

There is a big difference between artillery and the other weapons.  Grenades and flamethrower were designed specifically to clear out infantry in cover with accurate close-rang shots of grenades through windows of flame through pill box slots - it's their job.  On the other hand the rule writers assumed that every inaccurate, long range artillery shot that can't even see its target always lands perfectly the other side of the cover the infantry are hiding behined and this is just not true, the first thing any soldier does is dive for cover, cover does have an effect against artillery.

Actually cover works against everything, including grenades, flame throwers and more. (well, maybe less if you count gas, germs, viruses and so forth).

A grenade lands near you, you jump behind a rock, or tree, and so forth. I think cover should count against all attacks. Some attacks, such as grenades, flame throwers and such should reduce your cover by one step, so soft becomes none and hard becomes soft. It should even count in close combat (evr try to stab someone hiding behind a rock?). Now you woudl have the option as the defender, maintain cover save and not get your counter attack or take your counter attack in close combat but sacrifice your cover save.

And as always, ahem, heroes and walkers should also get cover.



#17 felkor

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Posted 22 September 2011 - 08:22 AM

Somebody on the Facebook Dust Tactics group just posted this:

 

"Finally heard back from FFG regarding Artillery Weapons and the Wiederbelebungsserum... All they said is that they are working on clarifying the rules and that there will be a new FAQ out soon."

So it sounds like their rulings in the emails we received weren't necessarily so final.



#18 Loophole Master

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Posted 22 September 2011 - 08:28 AM

I tell you, if only the creators of the game gave it half as much thought as we do....



#19 felkor

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Posted 22 September 2011 - 08:31 AM

Loophole Master said:

I tell you, if only the creators of the game gave it half as much thought as we do....

 

Yeah.  I can understand a rule not being written clearly.  Often if you're designing a game, you think something is clear because you already understand the rule when you're reading it.

But the issue here doesn't seem to be clarity of those who wrote the rules, but that the people writing the rules didn't even think about this situation at all to begin with, despite it not even being a rare situation.  It really seems bizarre to me.



#20 ReaverRandall

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Posted 22 September 2011 - 01:28 PM

 heroes benefit from cover when paired with a squad dont they?

 

 

 






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