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El_Chacho

M3/M1 Hunter-Killer Plt in a Hasty Attack: Learning to Punch with the Fingers Spread

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In command of vehicle 4/4-A (M3), I move northeast to get into the flank of the enemy BMPs. There is a hill that covers my approach. While moving in, I get harassed by Iraqi infantry (survivors from the BMPs destroyed quite a while ago), but fortunately my vehicle doesn't suffer any damage.

I manage to get into the enemy's flank and I open fire on them. They didn't have a chance ...

zk5w8z.jpg

Caught with their guns pointing to the wrong place.

Even an M3 from another team (vehicle 4/3-A, the one who I didn't want to risk peeking towards the enemy-held side of the hill) joined the fun.

261koeh.jpg

Cleaning up for good.

4q2d5l.jpg

Vehicle 4/3-A (foreground) joins the party for an un-intended kill-sack. Can you see the M3 I was commanding, far in the background, near the base of the distant hill? Just kidding

Time now is 8:24 and we can finally move to re-establish the screen line.

sxeqvl.jpg

Family picture. Team 2-A

End of mission.

Coming up: lessons learned.

P/S: Thanks congo for pointing out typos and errors. I will correct them soon.

Cheers,

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I think it deserves to be posted as well on the SimHQ.com forum's AAR board. Might attract fresh blood. ;)

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have you checked out El Chacho's website, Ssnake? it's really good. http://kriegsimulation.blogspot.com/

i see the makings of his next article there, in pieces here. ;)

again, excellent work El Chacho! and again, you kill me with anticipation. this is one thing i believe players and sce designers here miss; a good review -- feedback and inspiration. the opinion is not what matters so much as the play by play -- lessons learned.

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Thanks, gentlemen. :)

Ssnake: Great idea. Will also post it at the Wargamers.com forum. Although the site's main focus isn't simulations and lately it has been drifting into other gaming genres, SBProPE should be of interest.

Hackworth: Thanks, man. Appreciated. I owe you this scenario. I need to add some sort of scoring to this thing. And a briefing. And tweak the random starting positions. :eek2:

Cheers,

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If you need help, send me an email. Maybe I have the one or other hint for you. :)

For example, if you use the jump to end, if condition with a pure random variable the unit will be at the end of that route as tghe condition will be tested and the jum executed prior to the planning phase.

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Thanks Ssnake! I didn't know that. That will simplify the editing.

I went on a posting raid to both SimHQ and Wargamer.com.

Cheers,

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Some points:

As far as tactics go, the major "mistake" here (and I'm using quotes because I'm not throwing rocks at you) is moving your subunits in formation.

The way this works in RL is each 2-car recce patrol moves one foot on the ground at all times. That way you have support from within the patrol and you minimize exposure to the enemy.

Were I a patrol commander, I'd move the recce vehicles leapfrog and have the tank 3rd OOM moving caterpillar with the trail recce C/S. When the lead C/S reports set, the tank moves forward to "bump" the trail recce C/S and assume his position. The trail recce C/S then moves past the lead C/S and finds the next position of observation forward.

Perhaps more to the point though - and this may reflect differences between Canadian and Yank doctrine - as a Squadron commander, I'd be very hesitant to penny-packet out my tanks by attaching them to recce patrols. I don't ever want a 1:1 tank fight if I can at all help it. Concentration of force is a principle of deploying armour, and if I have tanks I can use on this mission, I want them fighting as a single body.

Assume a troop of tanks attached OPCOM to the recce Tp Ldr, those tanks would stay as a 4-tank formation a bound or two behind the recce vehicles. Then, when the recce vehicles make contact, the tank Tp Ldr would be given a hasty attack task, with the recce Ptl acting as firebase.

Assuming sufficient resources, the tank Tp moves to the assault position, the Recce Tp calls in arty, when the arty starts falling the tanks move forward and start banging away, and when the tanks make contact the recce Tp opens up as well.

I'd like to try this scenario...

DG

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Hi RecceDG,

Thanks for your comments. I just wanted to answer some of your points.

Some points:

As far as tactics go, the major "mistake" here (and I'm using quotes because I'm not throwing rocks at you) is moving your subunits in formation.

The way this works in RL is each 2-car recce patrol moves one foot on the ground at all times. That way you have support from within the patrol and you minimize exposure to the enemy.

The only specific parts of the mission where I moved my teams in formation are during infiltration and re-grouping. During infiltration I was just entering the enemy's security zone and frankly, with no enemy victors in sight and having received indirect fire in the center and south teams, I thought that leaving a vehicle stationary would be counterproductive. During the re-grouping, yes I could have done that.

Perhaps more to the point though - and this may reflect differences between Canadian and Yank doctrine - as a Squadron commander, I'd be very hesitant to penny-packet out my tanks by attaching them to recce patrols. I don't ever want a 1:1 tank fight if I can at all help it. Concentration of force is a principle of deploying armour, and if I have tanks I can use on this mission, I want them fighting as a single body.

Assume a troop of tanks attached OPCOM to the recce Tp Ldr, those tanks would stay as a 4-tank formation a bound or two behind the recce vehicles. Then, when the recce vehicles make contact, the tank Tp Ldr would be given a hasty attack task, with the recce Ptl acting as firebase.

I agree with your point. The whole point of the scenario was to "learn to punch with the fingers spread" with hunter-killer teams, though.

Assuming sufficient resources, the tank Tp moves to the assault position, the Recce Tp calls in arty, when the arty starts falling the tanks move forward and start banging away, and when the tanks make contact the recce Tp opens up as well.

Point well taken but unfortunately there were no indirect fires available for this mission.

I'd like to try this scenario...

DG

I am not very fond of publishing scenarios because the standards around here are very high. So, please don't expect a memorable, ass-kicking thing.

Please download it from this page. This website is going down soon, so hurry up if you want it. :)

Cheers,

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El Cacho, since you are interested in Hunter-Killer teams:

You are probably familiar with the book Armor Attacks:The Tank Platoon: An Interactive Exercise in Small-Unit Tactics and Leadership by John F. Antal.

-> http://www.amazon.com/Armor-Attacks-Interactive-Small-Unit-Leadership/dp/0891413839

The 2nd half of the book deals with Hunter-Killer teams, in the counter-recon role.

I created a scenario based on this tactical vignette, as it is in the book. The scneario dates from the SB1-times, but I adapted it a little bit to SB Pro PE.

Could be on interest to you - if so, give it a try.

(don't find it anymore on the Download-pages, see http://www.steelbeasts.com/sbforums/showpost.php?p=144156&postcount=13)

Rgds, Koen

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Sorry not to have read this earlier, I was looking around to have a read while waiting for the 2.538 update, but it sounds like a great scenario (I've just downloaded it so the web site is still "up").

Perhaps more to the point though - and this may reflect differences between Canadian and Yank doctrine - as a Squadron commander, I'd be very hesitant to penny-packet out my tanks by attaching them to recce patrols. I don't ever want a 1:1 tank fight if I can at all help it. Concentration of force is a principle of deploying armour, and if I have tanks I can use on this mission, I want them fighting as a single body.

Assume a troop of tanks attached OPCOM to the recce Tp Ldr, those tanks would stay as a 4-tank formation a bound or two behind the recce vehicles. Then, when the recce vehicles make contact, the tank Tp Ldr would be given a hasty attack task, with the recce Ptl acting as firebase.

I think the biggest difference is size. A US ACR (e.g. 3 "Brave Rifles" ACR) is the size of a Brit/Canadian/Aust Brigade.

The ACR "Squadron" equates to a Regt in our terms.

It has:

3 x Cavalry Troops, and

1 x "Armor" (Tank) Company

The "Troop" here actually consists of 6 platoons:

2 scout platoons (with M3 Bradley Cavalry Fighting Vehicles) (8 x CFV in total),

2 tank platoons (with M1 Abrams Main Battle Tanks) (8 x M1 in total),

a Fire Support Platoon, and

a Headquarters Platoon.

The tanks here aren't under some limited form of command status such as OPCOM, OPCON or TACON, they are organic to the Tp commander.

Apart from the Tks in each Tp, the Sqn Comd retains an entire Tk Coy if he needs a hvy armoured concentration.

These guys have got so many tks they can afford to distribute them far more widely than other units where hvy armour is a scarce resource.

Apart from that its akin to the earlier Brit practice of having Scimitar and Scorpion working together and even our mixing of "GUN" LAV's and APC LAV's in the same group (albeit it with far less firepower).

Edited by Gibsonm

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The ACR "Squadron" equates to a Regt in our terms.

It has:

3 x Cavalry Troops, and

1 x "Armor" (Tank) Company

The "Troop" here actually consists of 6 platoons:

2 scout platoons (with M3 Bradley Cavalry Fighting Vehicles) (8 x CFV in total),

2 tank platoons (with M1 Abrams Main Battle Tanks) (8 x M1 in total),

a Fire Support Platoon, and

a Headquarters Platoon.

The tanks here aren't under some limited form of command status such as OPCOM, OPCON or TACON, they are organic to the Tp commander.

Apart from the Tks in each Tp, the Sqn Comd retains an entire Tk Coy if he needs a hvy armoured concentration.

The scout platoons actually each had six rather than four vehicles. Each troop had its own mortars 2 X 4.2 in, and the squadron had an organic six tube howitzer battery. It was a lot of firepower to give to a small group of crazy -------- wearing cowboy hats and spurs on their boots.

Heavy ACR, Squadron TOE

Cav Troop TOE

Tank Company TOE

Howitzer Battery TOE

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Ah so even more CFV's than I recall when I last worked with them. :)

Oh and nothing wrong with spurs, all our Armoured Corps guys are entitled to wear them (not day to day but with our Mess Uniforms).

I think I heard somewhere that 3 ACR was going from a "real" ACR to some watered down wheeled version?

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