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Subject: Ordnance Area Fire on Woods with no LOS to ground level? rss

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Håkan Gunneriusson
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I am kind of convinced that this can't be done but I really can't get it straight why.

Situation is that a Sherman sees some Woods (in a wood hex) over a grain field in season and also over a couple of hedges blocking his LOS to the ground level of the woods. Fine, he can't see the ground level in the Woods. But he sees the actual Woods standing tall above all the 1/2 Hindrance/Obstacles

Why can't he shot area fire on the Woods and thus affect the Hex (only one location) in the woods with this area fire? He is targeting the Area he sees, the Woods in this case, not any units which might or might not be in the hex.

The example in C 3.331 shows that a unit out of LOS IN a gully can be affected by Area Fire despite being out of LOS. What differs from my example is that the firer actually sees the ground level location so the problem is not really there in the example.


Mortars shooting Area Fire on upper levels of a building do affect the ground level locations too (inside and outside the building), even if that is out of LOS. Correct? That is a slightly different situation, which might lead be believe things about the one I ask about. Or it might just be that I hold it as common sense (!) that you actually can target the trees and affect those below despite not seeing the actual dirt.
 
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Michael Weber
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I guess the difference here is that mortars use indirect fire and therefore could fire at the woods hex given, whereas your Sherman uses direct fire hence needs to be able to trace LOS no matter whether it area fires or not.

Then again, I haven't played ASL in ages, so take this with a grain of salt.
 
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Would it be area fire then? Halved by area fire, hindred by TEM, so almost impossible to hit.
 
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Michael Weber
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Grisz wrote:
Would it be area fire then? Halved by area fire, hindred by TEM, so almost impossible to hit.


As far as I recall it, indirect fire does NOT add TEM to the to hit process, but as a DRM on the IFT, also hitting infantry with indirect fire in woods is hughly effective due to the air bursts.
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Håkan Gunneriusson
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Mixo wrote:
I guess the difference here is that mortars use indirect fire and therefore could fire at the woods hex given, whereas your Sherman uses direct fire hence needs to be able to trace LOS no matter whether it area fires or not.

Then again, I haven't played ASL in ages, so take this with a grain of salt.


I can choose Area Fire with Direct Fire so that is not the issue here.



Grisz wrote:
Would it be area fire then? Halved by area fire, hindred by TEM, so almost impossible to hit.


Well the TEM as far as Hindrance and Obstacles on the way to the Woods does not matter when it comes to the Woods themselves as the hedges and grain fields all are 1/2 level. They do effectively block out the Ground level of the Woods though.


Mixo wrote:
Grisz wrote:
Would it be area fire then? Halved by area fire, hindred by TEM, so almost impossible to hit.


As far as I recall it, indirect fire does NOT add TEM to the to hit process, but as a DRM on the IFT, also hitting infantry with indirect fire in woods is hughly effective due to the air bursts.



That is true, TEM in the location is added to IFT. Mortars get the airburst bonus, but other Ordnance does not. But with that in mind I would like to think that the LOS to the Woods on level 1 could amount to the possibility to Area Fire there.

I guess one could argue that the only location is the ground in that hex and there is no LOS to it. But that is a bit disappointing as an explanation given the LOS to the Woods and the possibility of Area Fire on it.
 
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Michael Weber
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JASGripen wrote:
Mixo wrote:
I guess the difference here is that mortars use indirect fire and therefore could fire at the woods hex given, whereas your Sherman uses direct fire hence needs to be able to trace LOS no matter whether it area fires or not.

Then again, I haven't played ASL in ages, so take this with a grain of salt.


I can choose Area Fire with Direct Fire so that is not the issue here.




As I see it this IS the issue - you do not have LOS with a direct fire weapon, so you can NOT fire at the location,mno matter whether or not you area fire. That's the rules.

I see your point, but never try to argue against ASL rules with realism arguments, while ASL is a very good simulation, it is NOT realistic in many ways. (so I was told by a very experienced ASL player)

(and this thread makes me want to play ASL again...)
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Håkan Gunneriusson
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Mixo wrote:
JASGripen wrote:
Mixo wrote:
I guess the difference here is that mortars use indirect fire and therefore could fire at the woods hex given, whereas your Sherman uses direct fire hence needs to be able to trace LOS no matter whether it area fires or not.

Then again, I haven't played ASL in ages, so take this with a grain of salt.


I can choose Area Fire with Direct Fire so that is not the issue here.




As I see it this IS the issue - you do not have LOS with a direct fire weapon, so you can NOT fire at the location,mno matter whether or not you area fire. That's the rules.

I see your point, but never try to argue against ASL rules with realism arguments, while ASL is a very good simulation, it is NOT realistic in many ways. (so I was told by a very experienced ASL player)

(and this thread makes me want to play ASL again...)



Yes, to clarify what I meant is that I actually can shot Area Fire, in general with the gun.

I also agree that rules beat musings about reality as far as ASL goes. But it would be nice to have some rules to point at in this case.

Along the lines that I must see the location and the location in this case is the Ground level (A2.8). But - now I am repeating myself - I do see the Woods and they do stop my LOS so an Area Fire (which targets the entire Hex according to C3.41) on the Terrain seems reasonable. Still I do not see the Ground location, is that the crunch point? If so it is just to accept, even though I do not find it overly realistic (certainly as the Woods are given a very realistic interpretation and effect regarding Area Fire with mortars).


And yes I also agree in that rule discussion makes you want to play. I have just this last year picked up ASL again after 20 years with little ASL-gaming (started with SL and the CoI in 1985, ASL when released) so I am a bit rusty, but it is a fun game.
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Angelus Seniores
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realism here is as follows;
-your sherman sees the top of the trees but not any units at ground level of those trees
-you use direct fire so you effectively can only shoot at the top of the trees: the treetrunk and its branches at 10-20 meters above ground
-area fire means that you are firing several shots in succession within the given target area of the hex (40 meters diameter)

so while you might argue that shooting at the top of the trees might create falling wooden debris that could affect the soldiers below, since you dont know their exact location within the hex (40 meters diameter) and the timeframe between hitting the trees and the debris falling to the ground chances of actually hitting something/someone before they move away or are even lucky someone is underneath it at all is practically nil and the effect of fallen wooden debris is rather questionable.

fire for effect in ASL is normally where the actual shells/bullets hit the target or near the target, close enough so that at the very least the blast of shrapnel could hit nearby targets at high speed.
air burst effect in trees is that due to the shells hitting the trees, splinters of wood are created/slung around at high speed much like shrapnel, on top of the usual shrapnel creating additional effect.
shrapnel/wooden splinters from firing at the top of the treesis likelytoo far/imprecise to have effect below.
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Brian Roundhill
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JASGripen wrote:
I am kind of convinced that this can't be done but I really can't get it straight why.

Situation is that a Sherman sees some Woods (in a wood hex) over a grain field in season and also over a couple of hedges blocking his LOS to the ground level of the woods. Fine, he can't see the ground level in the Woods. But he sees the actual Woods standing tall above all the 1/2 Hindrance/Obstacles

Why can't he shot area fire on the Woods and thus affect the Hex (only one location) in the woods with this area fire? He is targeting the Area he sees, the Woods in this case, not any units which might or might not be in the hex.

The example in C 3.331 shows that a unit out of LOS IN a gully can be affected by Area Fire despite being out of LOS. What differs from my example is that the firer actually sees the ground level location so the problem is not really there in the example.


Mortars shooting Area Fire on upper levels of a building do affect the ground level locations too (inside and outside the building), even if that is out of LOS. Correct? That is a slightly different situation, which might lead be believe things about the one I ask about. Or it might just be that I hold it as common sense (!) that you actually can target the trees and affect those below despite not seeing the actual dirt.


In your example, neither MTRs nor direct fire Guns can fire Area at the Woods. LOS to a Location in the hex must exist for any fire to occur.

In the case of a building, the difference is direct fire vs indirect fire. Direct fire goes straight to the target, so nothing/less hits the out of LOS targets. Indirect fire comes down onto the target, which will hit all targets no matter the LOS.

Think of mortars as being closer to OBA than to AT or INF Guns.
 
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Nadir Elfarra
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The top of the woods are not a Location and therefore cannot be targeted separately. You _can_ fire on an empty Location (or one containing a concealed unit) but will pay the penalties as if a concealed unit were there (+2 TH DRM, as I recall).

Also unless you're using Area _Target_Type_ you won't gain or maintain acquisition (a mortar, of course, is limited to ATT), but you can still fire if you wish.

If memory serves, the only time LOS to a non-Location comes into play is LoS to the blast height of OBA being used to determine if it can or must be adjusted.

-N
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Klas Malmstrom
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Nadir_E wrote:
If memory serves, the only time LOS to a non-Location comes into play is LoS to the blast height of OBA being used to determine if it can or must be adjusted.

And to Aerial units as well, although I guess one can consider those to be a sort of "quasi"-Location.
 
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Peter Kossits
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Nadir_E wrote:
The top of the woods are not a Location and therefore cannot be targeted separately.


I think this is really the key. You can't move troops to level 1 of woods.

Paraphrasing Brian a bit:

Mortar shells / OBA usually have a steep trajectory - the shells fall almost like rain. So if you aim at a unit in a roof or upper level building location, if the shell falls just a little short it will land on the ground next the the building.

Non-mortar Guns firing from on-board will usually have a flat trajectory and that effect doesn't happen.

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Håkan Gunneriusson
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Angelsenior wrote:
realism here is as follows;
-your sherman sees the top of the trees but not any units at ground level of those trees
-you use direct fire so you effectively can only shoot at the top of the trees: the treetrunk and its branches at 10-20 meters above ground
-area fire means that you are firing several shots in succession within the given target area of the hex (40 meters diameter)

so while you might argue that shooting at the top of the trees might create falling wooden debris that could affect the soldiers below, since you dont know their exact location within the hex (40 meters diameter) and the timeframe between hitting the trees and the debris falling to the ground chances of actually hitting something/someone before they move away or are even lucky someone is underneath it at all is practically nil and the effect of fallen wooden debris is rather questionable.

fire for effect in ASL is normally where the actual shells/bullets hit the target or near the target, close enough so that at the very least the blast of shrapnel could hit nearby targets at high speed.
air burst effect in trees is that due to the shells hitting the trees, splinters of wood are created/slung around at high speed much like shrapnel, on top of the usual shrapnel creating additional effect.
shrapnel/wooden splinters from firing at the top of the treesis likelytoo far/imprecise to have effect below.


As it is Woods (lvl 1, one story house level, appr. 3 meters above ground) and not Forest (lvl 2), I still can accept a IFFT 6 as reasonable. It is after all HE and not AP.

Roundhill wrote:

In your example, neither MTRs nor direct fire Guns can fire Area at the Woods. LOS to a Location in the hex must exist for any fire to occur.
In the case of a building, the difference is direct fire vs indirect fire. Direct fire goes straight to the target, so nothing/less hits the out of LOS targets. Indirect fire comes down onto the target, which will hit all targets no matter the LOS.
Think of mortars as being closer to OBA than to AT or INF Guns.


It is what I understand (but not fully like) that the location is at the ground level and that is the end of the story. Which paragraph is the Location/LOS/Target part located in (not that I disbelieve it, but if there are rules it is good to know where they are)?


Nadir_E wrote:
The top of the woods are not a Location and therefore cannot be targeted separately. You _can_ fire on an empty Location (or one containing a concealed unit) but will pay the penalties as if a concealed unit were there (+2 TH DRM, as I recall).

Also unless you're using Area _Target_Type_ you won't gain or maintain acquisition (a mortar, of course, is limited to ATT), but you can still fire if you wish.

If memory serves, the only time LOS to a non-Location comes into play is LoS to the blast height of OBA being used to determine if it can or must be adjusted.
-N

Yes, but it still bugs me as the woods stop the LOS I would like to see some effect there. To paraphrase an old philosophical dilemma, "If Woods gets air-bursts at level 1 and no LOS can be drawn, does it make an IIFT attack?"

klasmalmstrom wrote:
And to Aerial units as well, although I guess one can consider those to be a sort of "quasi"-Location.

Let us have another quasi-location!

peterk1 wrote:

I think this is really the key. You can't move troops to level 1 of woods.
Paraphrasing Brian a bit:
Mortar shells / OBA usually have a steep trajectory - the shells fall almost like rain. So if you aim at a unit in a roof or upper level building location, if the shell falls just a little short it will land on the ground next the the building.
Non-mortar Guns firing from on-board will usually have a flat trajectory and that effect doesn't happen.


You can't move troops to level 1 of woods? Hey there are climbing rules! j/k
The mortar part I agree with, yes. But a hex with mostly Woods would be enough to achieve HE detonations in the trees even with a flat trajectory (it does after all stop LOS so there is a case for the Woods being dense enough). I am not stating that it is like this in ASL, obviously not. Just that ASL lacks in realism in this aspect. All concluded I would very much like to see a rule for hitting Woods at level 1 with Area Fire despite not seeing the actual location, just the lvl 1 Woods.
 
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JASGripen wrote:
[q="Angelsenior"]I would very much like to see a rule for hitting Woods at level 1 with Area Fire despite not seeing the actual location, just the lvl 1 Woods.


Although I've read a case where German Tiger destroyed a Soviet tank using a spotter in a higher position. It was a kind of reverse slope situation where there was not a direct line of fire.

In ASL it would mostly cause situations where firing unit would shoot at the enemy that was not known to that unit , i.e. extrasensory perception fire (EPF).
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Brian Roundhill
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JASGripen wrote:
All concluded I would very much like to see a rule for hitting Woods at level 1 with Area Fire despite not seeing the actual location, just the lvl 1 Woods.


OK, got you. Interesting idea, but I do not like the game impact. ASL tries hard to limit the usage of the players omniscient knowledge. For example, the extra chit draws in OBA when there are no Known enemy units in LOS.

Was this tactic used enough in WW2 to warrant inclusion in the rules?
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Håkan Gunneriusson
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I guess one need examples of it to be sure. But artillery tactics like this was used extremely often during WW I. Aiming at church towers (often pre-emptively destroyed) for accuracy on ground you could not see which you suspected could be of value to the enemy (pure interdiction or destruction missions. Support of airplanes and balloons could be used to help, but the artillery could do without them. The usage during WW II is probably based on a host of factors, but I would not see it as excluded. Countries as the Us and USSR did for sure not save ammo when it comes to ordnance.

Just allowing ordnance to shoot at random trees on the country side is a bit unrealistic, certainly as we in the game have a bit too good a view of the enemy dispositions to allow that.

I could say that if a unit with Radio (often an AFV) has LOS to a Woods location, then (other) Ordnance with LOS to the pseudo-location lvl 1 Woods would be allowed to fire Area Fire on that Hex. It would limit the usage and also disallow questionable shots on hexes no one is even near to see.

To go further one can limit it to certain types of Ordnance too. AFV with radios and also only ART/MTR type of ordnance, which we can assume have some type of communication (direct radio or telephone to the battery from the battalion where a radio likely is available). An AT or INF gun will most likely not have any good means of communication (allowed by SSR, to complicate it). Or any Ordnance stacked with a manned SW Radio (DR contact) could get the message. Disallow the option when scarce ammo sounds as a good rule of thumb too.

Yes, something like that perhaps.
 
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Håkan Gunneriusson
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LtUrban wrote:
JASGripen wrote:
[q="Angelsenior"]I would very much like to see a rule for hitting Woods at level 1 with Area Fire despite not seeing the actual location, just the lvl 1 Woods.


Although I've read a case where German Tiger destroyed a Soviet tank using a spotter in a higher position. It was a kind of reverse slope situation where there was not a direct line of fire.

In ASL it would mostly cause situations where firing unit would shoot at the enemy that was not known to that unit , i.e. extrasensory perception fire (EPF).


Hehe I have WWI German doctrine for shooting indirect fire with MGs, shooting over slopes. Lots of ballistic charts in it.
 
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Pierce Ostrander
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I'm pretty sure that the bottom line from a rules perspective is: you can't hit or effect a unit that you do not have LOS to, with the exception of indirect fire (OBA and On-board Mortars).

Even with OBA, if you have no LOS to a unit in the location, you have to draw another chit, and possible suffer the cancellation of the OBA.

These are, in part, rules that take away some of the "all knowing" power of the player who sees more than the dudes on the map.
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James Lowry
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It should also be noted that ASL generally figures LOS by whole level increments. The woods are one level tall. If you can't see the ground level of the hex, then you can assume that you can't even see there are trees there.
 
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Håkan Gunneriusson
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Rindis wrote:
It should also be noted that ASL generally figures LOS by whole level increments. The woods are one level tall. If you can't see the ground level of the hex, then you can assume that you can't even see there are trees there.



They block LOS with their upper part even when the lower part can't be seen.
 
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Tuukka
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JASGripen wrote:
LtUrban wrote:
JASGripen wrote:
[q="Angelsenior"]I would very much like to see a rule for hitting Woods at level 1 with Area Fire despite not seeing the actual location, just the lvl 1 Woods.


Although I've read a case where German Tiger destroyed a Soviet tank using a spotter in a higher position. It was a kind of reverse slope situation where there was not a direct line of fire.

In ASL it would mostly cause situations where firing unit would shoot at the enemy that was not known to that unit , i.e. extrasensory perception fire (EPF).


Hehe I have WWI German doctrine for shooting indirect fire with MGs, shooting over slopes. Lots of ballistic charts in it.


It is still used in theory today. Giving that ability to a unit in ASL, would give them omniscience, as Mr. Roundhill tried to say. It would basically give each squad/invidulal vehicle an UAV (drone) dedicated to that unit.

You can always make a house rule, which makes board games good. Instant change, no coding.
 
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Perry Cocke
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JASGripen wrote:
All concluded I would very much like to see a rule for hitting Woods at level 1 with Area Fire despite not seeing the actual location, just the lvl 1 Woods.


Why limit yourself to treetops?
Buildings are usually higher than their highest Location.
Why not should _over_ the hedge to hit the roof of the single-story building?

Why limit yourself to treetops and buildings?
You can see the air over every hex, right?
Just shoot at the air.
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Håkan Gunneriusson
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perrycocke wrote:
JASGripen wrote:
All concluded I would very much like to see a rule for hitting Woods at level 1 with Area Fire despite not seeing the actual location, just the lvl 1 Woods.


Why limit yourself to treetops?
Buildings are usually higher than their highest Location.
Why not should _over_ the hedge to hit the roof of the single-story building?

Why limit yourself to treetops and buildings?
You can see the air over every hex, right?
Just shoot at the air.


You are not really constructive here, are you?

I am not advocating shooting at nothing. I just asked a question about the possibility to target something you actually can see in order to have an Area of Effect attack in the whole Hex, something which do obstruct LOS (albeit not a location) so one could assume the grenades would stop here.

The example did not cover buildings, roof tops (even if not a location) could of course fall under the same discussion. But I do not think it would have added much to include them in this discussion as nothing new would have come out of it.

Would you like to expand on the part where you advocate shooting at the air?
 
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JP Laurio
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JASGripen wrote:
What is your contribution?

LOL... what is Perry Cocke's contribution to ASL, well now, hmm, lemme think this through... you know what, I think I need get back to ya!

Priceless.
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Perry Cocke
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JASGripen wrote:

You are not really constructive here, are you?


I think "reductio ad absurdem" is a legitimate tool in discussions.

JASGripen wrote:


Would you like to expand on the part where you advocate shooting at the air?


We know the treetops are there, we know the air is there. What is the difference?
 
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