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  #1  
Old February 7th, 2024, 08:40 PM

Christocipher Christocipher is offline
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Default Free Elevation tanks

I see lots of this kind of stuff about north africa tank battle like form here http://www.desertrats.org.uk/battles1941.htm#Brevity where it says

The battle became long range duel, with the British 2-pdrs hopelessly outclassed by the German 50mm and 75mm guns and by nightfall only 15 tanks were left.

And I think well why?!?!?!? that 2 pounder is just as good as the 50mm gun. But I think I worked out why. Its because the British tanks did not have any elevation gears. The gun elevation is done with just a shoulder so completely manual and exhausting because gunner is the shock absorber for elevaion when the tank is moving. With an elevation gear if it falls a bit short go up a cog tooth, with the shoulder elevation going up a bit is really hard because the gun just fired moving the gunner so he looses his place. So every shot is like a first shot. They had that instead of gears because policy was to fire on the move, called free elevation. But they went to gears as quick as they could once they realised it didnt work very good.

I looked at the tanks and at that time most get a range fire control of 2 or 3. But I see that some tanks get 1 and 1,the japanese tanks do and the British tank number 5 A9 and tank number 6 A10 both get the 1 1 values because they had free elevation. After that though the british tanks go to 2 2. But the gun, sights, traverse, and shoulder elevation on these later tanks is all still the same. So I think there are a lot of other British tanks with 2 2 that should be 1 1.

I looked on the web at tank walkarounds inside and out and here is some of the tanks that have no elevation gear and so I think should be 1 1. Matilda 2, ValentineI-VII. All the Cruiser tanks up to and including Crusader. The Churchills had no elevation gearing until the 75mm gun versions. But a few Mk IIIs and MkIVs did have some elevation gearing, go figure.

The early M3 stuart had shoulder elevation, The ones used in operation crusader were all the shoulder elevated type. And the 37mm turreted french tanks but they already have the 1 1 already. And the 47mm gun in the Char B.
The CS versions of these British tanks had elevation gearing.
I can do more research if you like. I had fun looking.
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Old February 9th, 2024, 09:06 AM
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Default Re: Free Elevation tanks

elevation gears / no elevation gears was NEVER a consideration ( Never.....) in range finder and fire control ratings but the number of men the turret held did ESPECIALLY when the turret only held one man who ended up being commander, loader and gunner ( like a lot of French and Japanese tanks did )

One thing we have done from the start is provide the tools for people who have "differing opinions " on how units should be set up to make the all changes they think would be better and test those ideas in the game
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Old February 9th, 2024, 09:42 PM

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Default Re: Free Elevation tanks

Quote:
Originally Posted by Christocipher View Post
I see lots of this kind of stuff about north africa tank battle like form here http://www.desertrats.org.uk/battles1941.htm#Brevity where it says

The battle became long range duel, with the British 2-pdrs hopelessly outclassed by the German 50mm and 75mm guns and by nightfall only 15 tanks were left.

And I think well why?!?!?!? that 2 pounder is just as good as the 50mm gun. But I think I worked out why. Its because the British tanks did not have any elevation gears. .
From a pure armor piercing standpoint, the 2pounder (40mm) gun was one of the best AT weapons of the early war period. But generally Commonwealth units armed with this weapon only had AP shot which was solid. No HE explosive, basically an oversized inert bullet. Coupled with its smaller size, it could take numerous penetrations to take out an AFV vs. an explosive AP shell that with penetration would burst inside the target. The German 50/42 and later 50/60 were far more versatile and thats not factoring in 3 man vs. 1 or 2 man turret configs and rangefinding equipment.
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Old February 10th, 2024, 01:24 AM

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Default Re: Free Elevation tanks

Oh OK I will try Mobhack it looks pretty hard but Ill try it thanks for the tip off.

When I started playing I noticed that the machine guns in the front of the tank were not as good as the ones in the turret but they were the same guns. I was a bit puzzled but then i guessed that its because of the way they are mounted that makes the difference. So I thought that my 2 pounder post would be a good one but if it isnt thats fine too.

So I guessed that becasue the front machine gun is free mounted in up and down and side to side and the turret machine gun is on gears up and down and side to side thats why the turret one is better. I dont understand how the Rangefinder and Firecontrol works but i just thought maybe the firecontrol is about how the gun is mounted but so it isnt then so sorry just guessing. But I just put in rangefinder as well because they always seem to go up and down together. I looked in help but couldnt really understand what Rangefinder of Firecontrol is very much If anyone could explain it I might make less mistakes later on.
Anyway but back to the 2 pounder with free elevation, maybe then those guns should have less range instead of different Firecontrol and Rangefinder numbers like the MGs in the tank front and turret? Im trying not to be annoying but would the mount make any difference to the guns accuracy maybe?
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Old February 10th, 2024, 01:33 AM
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Default Re: Free Elevation tanks

Technically, we could give the UK shoulder guided guns a stabiliser vaue of 1. Because the inter-war regulars pracised shooting on the move a lot, and the shoulder rig was supposed to make tracking a moving target while you yourself are moving easier. But that required a heck of a lot of training time, and when the expansion of the army with conscripts happened, less time was available to exhaustively train on the shoulder elevated system. So we would require say tanks up to 40-1(??) with stab 1, and then the same thing with stab 0 after.

Then cue the incoming whines from the rivet-counter types about say the matilda 2 suddenly losing its stabiliser, or "why has the matilda 2 early model got a stabiliser when they had no such mechanism - error! error!".

So they dont have a stabiliser, despite the fact that the interwar regulars with well-honed extensive training could actually be deemed to perform as if they had one, with the skilled gunner himself being the stabiliser mechanism. So less whining from error ferrets, and no need for a slightly different model of several AFV post 40-41 which saves OOB slots...
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Old February 10th, 2024, 10:18 PM

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Default Re: Free Elevation tanks

Hi Mobhack,

I'm curious here. As both a WW2 and MBT player, I tend to see the Stabilizer variable as being rather limited in terms of flexibility given the small range of values utilized. For example, going from pre WW2 to 2024, the range varies from 0-6, with notable advancements mostly coming in the post WW2 situation.

I'm interested in hearing the devs take on this variable as I had in the past the displeasure of participating in old WW2 threads where some participants would argue up and down that the existence of a "stabilizer" en masse for the US Army gave them a "major" advantage during that war. (represented in the game as "1")

My opinion has always been that that is a gross exaggeration given that true fire on the move capability didn't evolve till well after WW2 and during the cold war escalations in technology. I've read many of the anecdotal accounts during WW2 and it seems to be that a stab level of "1" basically represented a slight advantage if a tank was moving slowly over fairly even terrain. otherwise, it was mostly used as a "travel lock" Level 2 presented a primitive but more comprehensive level of stabilization and 3 to 3+ representing the realm of true fire on the move capability.
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Old February 10th, 2024, 10:31 PM

Christocipher Christocipher is offline
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Default Re: Free Elevation tanks

Hi Mobhack thanks for your help, yes I agree that is a good idea. I think the free elevation guns should get the 1 stabiliser number. I can explain to the rivet counters and error ferrets why those tanks get the new number for you because I understand it now.

But do you think the range for the free elevation guns should be less as well like for the turret and hull machineguns?

I know you must be a busy person because you are a developer but I am trying to learn mobhack and other stuff. Im seeing guns have an accuracy and a firecontrol and a rangefinder If you have time, can you please explain to me what is the difference between these? I already looked in help and I cant understand it much. They seem to be sort of the same and a bit mysterious. Like originally I thought the fire control would be about how the gun is mounted. but now I think it isnt so I dont know what it is. And when I look, is rangefinder for like a real rangefinder or gunsights or both maybe, but it does seem to go up with the fire control numbers. So Im not sure what I should change in mobhack to change a tank to be a free elevation tank.
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  #8  
Old February 11th, 2024, 07:37 AM
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Default Re: Free Elevation tanks

Quote:
Originally Posted by lansoar View Post
Hi Mobhack,

I'm curious here. As both a WW2 and MBT player, I tend to see the Stabilizer variable as being rather limited in terms of flexibility given the small range of values utilized. For example, going from pre WW2 to 2024, the range varies from 0-6, with notable advancements mostly coming in the post WW2 situation.

I'm interested in hearing the devs take on this variable as I had in the past the displeasure of participating in old WW2 threads where some participants would argue up and down that the existence of a "stabilizer" en masse for the US Army gave them a "major" advantage during that war. (represented in the game as "1")

My opinion has always been that that is a gross exaggeration given that true fire on the move capability didn't evolve till well after WW2 and during the cold war escalations in technology. I've read many of the anecdotal accounts during WW2 and it seems to be that a stab level of "1" basically represented a slight advantage if a tank was moving slowly over fairly even terrain. otherwise, it was mostly used as a "travel lock" Level 2 presented a primitive but more comprehensive level of stabilization and 3 to 3+ representing the realm of true fire on the move capability.
A stabiliser valur of 1 is a tiny little data advantage that gives a very small benefit if the firer has moved a hex or 2, and really is only useful if ou want to move your tank while staying locked onto the target. Staying locked on means if you move, any steps up the rangefinding ladder you had breviously made from prior shots fired at it remain and you dont have to restart at the bottom rung. Which is nullified if you lose LOS to the target by putting say smoke or a tree between you and it by your own movement.

So tanks with 1 stab like grant, sherman and stuart - really dont have any great advantage I find. Post WW2 tanks with larger numbers do have a noticeable benefit though. But a stationary tank which fires its shots from the same spot still has the ultimate to-hit scores and so I try to refrain from moving and fire from the halt if I can do so.
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Old February 11th, 2024, 08:41 AM
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Default Re: Free Elevation tanks

Quote:
Originally Posted by Christocipher View Post
Hi Mobhack thanks for your help, yes I agree that is a good idea. I think the free elevation guns should get the 1 stabiliser number. I can explain to the rivet counters and error ferrets why those tanks get the new number for you because I understand it now.

But do you think the range for the free elevation guns should be less as well like for the turret and hull machineguns?
Not at all, you are in any case heading waay off the beaten track into the usual "how many angels can dance on a pinhead" sort of territory with that sort of micro detailed discussion that only ultra-geek theorist types think is relevant, like the WW1 French with thier cult of the bayonet and the "charge wuth elan" that would sweep ze battlefield because they had the war-winning red trousers and the equally "important" long pig-sticker bayonets and thier opponent did not...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Christocipher View Post

I know you must be a busy person because you are a developer but I am trying to learn mobhack and other stuff. Im seeing guns have an accuracy and a firecontrol and a rangefinder If you have time, can you please explain to me what is the difference between these? I already looked in help and I cant understand it much. They seem to be sort of the same and a bit mysterious. Like originally I thought the fire control would be about how the gun is mounted. but now I think it isnt so I dont know what it is. And when I look, is rangefinder for like a real rangefinder or gunsights or both maybe, but it does seem to go up with the fire control numbers. So Im not sure what I should change in mobhack to change a tank to be a free elevation tank.
Accuracy determines the base to-hit chance of a weapon at range X. Higher ACC means the basic to-hit chance is higher for one with more ACC than some other weapon with lower ACC at that range X. And of course if firing low velocity (HE) or high velocity (AP) then the base to-hit differs at longer ranges as well..

Range finder deals with the distance to the target and hence ranging errors. A laser range finder equipped unit (in MBT) has fewer steps to climb on the ranging ladder from first shot to the best with less shots fired at the target.

Fire control deals with both target and firer (own) movement - (hexes moved). FC probably relates to the mounting, speed of traverse and suchlike (including turret turn rates say). STAB interacts with this of course...

And then missiles will do thier own thing, and AAA fire is another completely different kettle of fish as well, and so on and so forth.

And then again, there are other variables that come into play - like the crew quality, suppression level, formation leader quality (good leaders if nearby can "coach" a subordinate), Visibility level (and any night fighting gear you might have) and so on and so forth. And then what terrain type the target is in, any fortification and shell holes etc providing protection, smoke levels and whatever. And deductions for own unit damage, you name it.

In all cases - more is better, and hence more of it costs you more in the points calculator, as does more STAB and so forth. That is really all an end user playing with Mobhack needs to know, unless they have access to our C++.

This stuff is all very basically mentioned in the mobhack help for the basic FC RF etc - Unlike in the original SSI documentation that told you nothing about game mechanics whatsoever - so read that and then perhaps make experimental units and play around with them on a firing range scenario, if you are really interested and have plenty of time on your hands to do the experiments!.

All weapon variables naturally interact and cross over somewhat, but the only way to know how would be to have the code to hand and hook it into a simulator function that runs the core hit chance code say 1000 times. Like the one I made that gives you results for the armour penetration code, APCalc.

SP results are based on various cascaded code routines and sub-routines with plenty of random variables involved. The game internals are not like some of those SPI games with a very simple "shift table" based on one D6 throw for combat that a user could memorise easily and comprehend and so "game" it and judge exactly what stacking strategy to use etc. Think of it as being more like Squad leader with its sub-choices and situational throws (thinking back 40 years here, never really liked that (horribly expensive to buy here in the UK!) system and preferred proper 1/300 tabletop rules by WRG, Tabletop games and so forth - those are the legacy of how I worked when doing my own coding of these games, which are nowhere like the original SSI base module we started with any more other than the basic outline approach - we have been at this gig for 20+ years, after all!).

And no, I wont be doing any hit chance simulator - the APCalc was bad enough and it is still just a tool that only gives a rough approximation and so its a guideline and not absolutely definative. Its basically there to give you a guide to how the various guns perform against armour and compare and contrast them.

And also - I wont be getting into any nore micro-detail discussion of how the code works or what particular subroutines do. We signed a non disclosure agreement with SSI so we cannot discuss thier way of doing things - and we have in any case elaborated and changed the basic SSI codebase over the decades, even if the core outline is still what they laid out, the detail differs somewhat (in some cases a lot!) from the original MSDOS SSI model.
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Old February 11th, 2024, 01:28 PM
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Exclamation Re: Free Elevation tanks

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Originally Posted by Christocipher View Post
Hi Mobhack thanks for your help, yes I agree that is a good idea. I think the free elevation guns should get the 1 stabiliser number.
.....and we do not and we will not be changing that for reasons that go back a quarter century working with this code but you are free to experiment on your own as the tools we use are all included in the game.
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