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artemis8

Que: M10 tank and an officer...

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Yesterday I encountered a situation when one M10 tank (from Normandy expansion), which may be affected by surpressive attacks, was in the same hex as one American squad constaining an officer.

My question is:  does a presence of an officer (on a same hex) guarantee to this type of tanks any bonus like it would do in case of a friendly squad? (for example removing disrupted token during status phase or enabling limited concentrated fire if pinned).

After reading the relevant rules I has been confirmed that officer bonuses relate only to squads, but I would ask for certainty.

Thanks for your answers.

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The more I consider the "open top AFV" suppression rule, the more certain I am that it is an incorrect model for the effects of small arm fire on these vehicles. From a rules framed "consistency" view, my argument is based on a comparison with closed cab, open bed half tracks. They do not become suppressed, thus retaining the ability to move and fire. Is an open topped AFV any different? In the fact that it contains a crew served heavy weapon, yes, however, the driver's compartment is similarly insulated from fire. Moreover, I feel there are command and crew cohesiveness factors that strengthen the AFV crew team morale model such that ToI suppressive fire effects are inappropriate for open topped AFVs. 

1. All AFVs have either an officer or NCO leader.

2. AFV crews have trained together extensively, thus generally, building morale that prevents panic (read John Keegan's "The Face of Battle").

3. AFV doctrinal training. Crews are trained to maneuver and fight their vehicles, not freeze up in the face of small arms fire or jump out and hide in the brush. If anything, tanker crews often over estimate their invulnerability to hostile fire.

Therefore, just as I disagree with the constant bailout tests required in FoW as a response to hostile "hits", I would argue that suppressive fire as applied to squads is not a parallel model for ANY ToI AFV. I know this argument has been made and discussed previously, however, in my mind, I do not feel it has been successfully resolved. There might be a middle ground rule that better models the response expected from open topped AFVs. An example would be defensive movement to a position out of small arms range and immediately fatiguing a fresh unit or in the case of a previously fatigued unit loss of an action during the next turn-move.

These thoughts are only my opinion.

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Artemis said:

After reading the relevant rules I has been confirmed that officer bonuses relate only to squads, but I would ask for certainty.

What could be more certain than the rules?  Squads are squads, tanks are vehicles.

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Very true and stricktly speaking, according to the rules, spot on. The issue that drove the question is the hybridization of the suppression concept for use against a tank (heavy vehicle). Although the squad-vehicle distinction in the rules can be used to simplify the solution to the question, the idea of an officer present certainly raises interesting possiblities since the TDs, in practice, operated very often in the infantry support role in close coordination with infantry.

In my opinion, if one assumes that the M10 can be suppressed by infantry fire, I would consider allowing the officer bonus against suppression if the two units occupy the same hex. It seems like a logical blend of two rules and a model true to historical practice. Moreover, the turret crew is behind armor, similar to an entrenchment, and giving them a +2 cover bonus wouldn't be unrealistic. Finally, open topped TDs were most vulnerable to close range infantry attacks and mortar/artillery fire. Deciding to allow suppression rules against an open topped vehicle in ToI only for these situations (i.e. close range infantry fire and indirect artillery fire) would also be a reasonably accurate model. If you want to go one final step, you could allow a suppressed M10 to move and fire with the same capabilities as a half track (i.e. using the turret mounted MG) while suppressing only the turret mounted weapon. These are options that might be considered for future editions of the rules or house rules only. As Longagoigo states, the published rules are the official rules. Cheers!

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The rules state that Squads in the same hex as an Infantry Officer may use the benefits. Thus Vehicles may not. - Tanks were seldom part of a infantry command. Most likely they are on attatched or detached duty.

M10s can no be suppressed by light arms infantry fire. M10 is a vehicle target, and must be attacked using firepowers vs vehicles. Mortar/artellery gain a significant advantage against the M10. All other units simply gain the option to suppress the M10 instead of damaging it.
 

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Hefsgaard said:

The rules state that Squads in the same hex as an Infantry Officer may use the benefits. Thus Vehicles may not. - Tanks were seldom part of a infantry command. Most likely they are on attatched or detached duty.

M10s can no be suppressed by light arms infantry fire. M10 is a vehicle target, and must be attacked using firepowers vs vehicles. Mortar/artellery gain a significant advantage against the M10. All other units simply gain the option to suppress the M10 instead of damaging it.
 

Actually I woder whether the vehicle would actually be suppressed or whether units can simply use suppresive firepower against it (notably a double mortar or artillery attack!), but that the result would nonetheless be a lightly/ heavily damaged or destroyed result. Nowhere in that particular rule is it written that the M10 suddenly gets soldier hit counters rather than those belonging to vehicles....

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Kingtiger said:

Actually I woder whether the vehicle would actually be suppressed or whether units can simply use suppresive firepower against it (notably a double mortar or artillery attack!), but that the result would nonetheless be a lightly/ heavily damaged or destroyed result. Nowhere in that particular rule is it written that the M10 suddenly gets soldier hit counters rather than those belonging to vehicles....

The rule states: This vehicle is vulnerable to suppressive attacks.

If one then goes to the rules for suppressive attacks, there is a lot written about the nature of what that means.  A suppressive attack differs from a normal attack.  If a vehicle that is vulnerable to suppressive attacks doesn't follow the rules of a suppressive attack, then what does it do?  If it did something different than the rules that cover suppressive attacks, it would have to say, so since it doesn't, it must follow the rules for suppressive attacks as written.  That means pinned and disrupted, not damaged.

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longagoigo said:

Kingtiger said:

Actually I woder whether the vehicle would actually be suppressed or whether units can simply use suppresive firepower against it (notably a double mortar or artillery attack!), but that the result would nonetheless be a lightly/ heavily damaged or destroyed result. Nowhere in that particular rule is it written that the M10 suddenly gets soldier hit counters rather than those belonging to vehicles....

 

The rule states: This vehicle is vulnerable to suppressive attacks.

If one then goes to the rules for suppressive attacks, there is a lot written about the nature of what that means.  A suppressive attack differs from a normal attack.  If a vehicle that is vulnerable to suppressive attacks doesn't follow the rules of a suppressive attack, then what does it do?  If it did something different than the rules that cover suppressive attacks, it would have to say, so since it doesn't, it must follow the rules for suppressive attacks as written.  That means pinned and disrupted, not damaged.

Yes, but at the same time it's still a vehicle and vehicles can't be surpressed. I'm not saying I'm write on this, but I do feel the rule is ambiguous. The same goes for equipment by the way. Do they receive pinned/disrupted counters or lightly/heavily damaged ones? (Usually the latter, I suppose, but there are some cards I recall which seem to indicate otherwise...)

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Equipment is considered Vehicle targets, and thus take Damage, and can not be suppressed. It only a Thing after all, no crew.

M10 has a rule attached that says it can be targeted by suppressive attacks. I think it is fairly simple to replace the word Squad with the word M10 in the suppressive fire section.

I do not think there is a rule that says that vehicles can not be pinned. There just are not any rules Letting a vehicle get pinned. Other than the M10.

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Kingtiger said:

Nowhere in that particular rule is it written that the M10 suddenly gets soldier hit counters rather than those belonging to vehicles....

The rule states: This vehicle is vulnerable to suppressive attacks.  How does this, as written, not say that the M10 follows the rules of suppressive attacks?   Rules evolve.  The rules in an earlier rulebook is about the game as it was.  Those rules are applicable until they are modified by later rule changes or adjustments.  Adding variety means making adjustments.  In the original rulebook, heavy tanks were given special rules, because they thought to add that variety then.  The M10 is following a special rule that they thought of later and hadn't anticipated earlier.

 

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Sorry for resurrecting this discussion after a long hiatus. My attention has been focused on real world for a while.

I cede your point that new rules can supercede old rules if the developers decide so, but the new rule should conform to the internal logic of other rules and models that are directly similar.  The new rule addressed suppression of a heavy vehicle due to its open top characteristic. How is a tank crew in an open topped heavy vehicle any different from a squad in the open topped back of light vehicle (half-track)? Previous rules state: "Squads inside vehicles cannot be targeted for an attack; only the vehicle itself can be targeted." , and, "Squads inside their vehicles are not affected by their vehicle being lightly or heavily damaged.". Suddenly, in one line of a new player aid sheet a rule states that a heavy vehicle can be suppressed. Does this mean the equipment is suppressed or the crew (re: squad). Hmmm....

This new rule is flawed. In my opinion, it needs to be dropped or an additional rule needs to be created that aligns open topped transport vehicles with the new rule. The M10 suppression rule doesn't pass the consistency test. 

 

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I just finished reading "The Tank Killers" by Harry Yeide. This book was published in 2004, and uses internal records/documents, survivor accounts and after action reports (AAR) to document the history of America' s TD force from its formation in 1941 thru its dissolution in 1945 at the end of the war. From the M3 thru to the M36, according to this well researched book, the TDs were extremely effective at dealing with German armor...even the "lowly" M10. In fact, comments by German officers and generals after the war attributed the American successes against German armor deployment to the TDs and airpower. The two primary causes (statistically) for TD losses were artillery and mines...not infantry fire or direct action by enemy armor. With regard to artillery, that which had the most effect was airburst ammunition v. impact. The only TD battalions that were truly vulnerable and nearly ineffective were the towed battalions (towed 3 inch guns).

The book does not support the idea that open topped TDs were any more vulnerable to suppressive fire than tanks. In fact, the book thoroughly documents the higher level of training and moral found in the TP battalions v. tank units. Even when TDs were outnumbered and outgunned, and heavily damaged, the crews frequently fought their vehicles to the last man. Numerous accounts by TD crews, infantry and tank units document the TDs resolve to fight under severe battlefield conditions. In fact, TD crews were trained in commando tactics and were indoctrinated to fight tanks dismounted using bazookas, sticky bombs, etc.

These were unique, flexible vehicles with exceptional crews that served multiple missions effectively including infantry support, indirect fire (area attack),  direct tank v. tank actions and tank formation support (the TDs provided overwatch for regular tank units due to the longer range of their guns). Many comments have been made about the TDs not being tanks. They were not tanks, but as Patton observed before the war, they would end up being used as tanks. He was correct. The TD force at the end of the war was dissolved not because it was ineffective (in fact the opposite was true, even for the 3 inch guns), but because it was used as tanks. With the development and deployment of the M26 Pershing mounting a 90mm gun using tungston cored AP ammo (offering the same mobility and firepower as the TDs) the TDs became superfluous.

I agree with the unique M10 rule that overcomes the armor rules of "thick armor", but in my opinion based on historical research, the M10 suppression rule unfairly punishes this US TD unit. Instead of creating a uniqueness rule that limits its effectiveness, a rule should be creating that allows the units to emulate the uses that made them effective. An example would be something like:

M10s (US TDs) are considered concealed (concealed squads rule) when in terrain offering cover.

This posting is offered in the spirit of critical analysis and not criticism. It should not be considered or construed as disparaging towards FFG, the game designers or the game.

 

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 M10s (US TDs) are considered concealed (concealed squads rule) when in terrain offering cover.

So basicaly they can never be shot at? Since they will be concealed continiusly?

 

I agree that the 'may be suppressed' rule is inelegant and perhaps not realistic at all. But it works. M10s do have to be played diffrently than Shermans or Tigers.

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They would remain concealed until they revealed per the four circumstances noted int the "Concealed Squads" rules section. It becomes immediately revealed any time it's in LOS of enemy unit(s) and not located in cover-providing terrain. If the M10 violated any of those rules it would become revealed until it re-enter cover out of LOS of enemy units and would then become concealed again.

Self-propelled TD units (and assault guns) were masters at the game of hide and seek...think of whack-a-mole.

The suppression rule does require the M10 to be used differently, but by making it a liability for the owner. TDs required the Germans to consider its positive capabilities more than the Americans had to consider its liabilities. For better or worse, it was used a lot for infantry support (both close and indirect) and as a tank (regardless the doctrinal writings). It was more effective than Shermans due to its main weapon AND moreso, because of the higher level of training, experience and elan within the battalions. Based on the sources I have read, this training, experience and elan allowed the TDs to use terrain and mobility to an advantage equaling the effects of the "Concealed Squads" rule.

Food for thought.

 

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But the Tank either automaticaly 'reenters' or will be in perpetual 'move and fire'

And german ATcrews the masters of concealment. But this is an abstract ww2 based game. In fact virtualy All units should start the game in concealment, if it was real life.

The M10 had serious weaknessed, leading to the Nessasary application of good evasion tactics by M10 commanders. This should NOT be implemented as a gamerule, but left to the Players to find good tactics.

M10 can not be used as a better sherman - mostly due to the threat from mortars. It is still hugely effective against german tanks though, at least compared to a sherman.

If you want better tanks play the germans. The US have gotten a good firepower tank, that has a unique little weakness. That is the stuff good gaming is made of. Not a rule making a Unit even more powerfull.

 

 

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The rules state - OPEN TOP: vehicle is vulnerable to suppresive attacks. This does not mean it can be pinned! You cannot pin a vehicle. You can only damage it with the suppresive fire as well. 

That means no difference when attacking it with normal squads or vehicles - the number of dice is equal for suppresive and normal fire.

The difference is when you attack M10 with mortar crew which may use its greater suppresive fire or when you attack it with suppresive artillery cards. Thats what OPEN TOP means.

Vehicle is vulnerable to sup. fire means it can be damaged with sup. fire.

I hope it s clear.

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And suppressive fire does not do damage. Suppressive fire pins. The rules are clear about this. It says nowhere in the rules that a vehicle can not be pinned. There are just no other rule to pin vehicles. - "hope this is clear....."

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I have to agree with the suppression vulnerability rule for the M10.  My findings have come across the following numerous times;  "Use of open-topped hulls was problematic since it afforded the tank destroyer crew less protection, both from high explosive weapons and nuclear, biological, and chemical threats".   Since artillery and mortar rounds are most effective suppressing when used as air burst this makes sense.  

As an old 11C myself when we got word there was Infantry in the open the charges were set for air burst to rain death and destruction down.  Not many open turreted tanks in my day but the same would apply to trucks.

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