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IckyATLAS

AAA How to make it fire in anger

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I have been frustrated by the way AAA was behaving so I wanted to give it a full test. I checked JimTM notes which show again interesting and strange effects. Clearly the behaviors are not one could normally expect. The following comments are for German AAA land based fixed guns, and mounted on a vehicle, againts Russian Pe2 bomber planes. 

 

To make it simple if you have a AAA gun that is active on duty say of country A and an enemy B is incoming then if A has spotted B,  then A according to its range capability should engage B. Clearly this is not the behavior. If the AAA guns are just left to themselves, they react very late and in a very lousy way that has nothing to do with their real capabilities and range parameters.

 

So I created a small spectate only mission, with the German flak guns and the smaller AAA machine gun on a tripod. The action is on an airfield on the Lapino Summer map. I have made three missions with the Pe2 bombers overflying the airfield where the AAA guns are. The missions are for an overfly at 250, 1000, and 3000 mt. Check that your Hud is not in hidden mode to see the text information displayed on the screen.

 

The bombers are first detected by a spotter (switch to spotter camera F12) in the wild that is based at 9500mt from the airfield from where he alerts the airfield if he spots incoming enemies. At that moment the AAA guns are alerted and  ready. (switch to the camera facing the incoming bombers) The radar of the airfield will give the horizontal distances of the planes as they approach with steps of 500mt, or when they leave the airfield, to help the gunners man their guns properly. It is interesting to see how the different type of guns react against the incoming or leaving planes, and depending on the altitude. Run the mission and see what and how it happens. 

 

When the bombers are vertical of the airfield look also at the guns behavior. Then switch (F12) to the camera oriented towards the leaving airplanes. You can always free the camera F11 and do whatever you wish. It is nice to look from the belly of the bomber how the AAA unleashes hell against you (mainly at 250 mt).

 

A comment here on the 10km radius limitation for airplanes "visibility". Because they simply disappear at a larger distance, CheckZone will not work if you have a radius over 10km for planes. They will not be detected, because they are not visible. 

 

Here are the 3 missions complete. You can see how it is made.

 

For an altitude of 250mt:

https://1drv.ms/u/s!AggNwB5PZgtYhzPGeJ4ze34LoiqD

 

So here is the Track for planes at an altitude of 1000 mt.

https://1drv.ms/u/s!AggNwB5PZgtYhzJZ_wad-zsu0Ndh

 

For an altitude of 3000 mt.

https://1drv.ms/u/s!AggNwB5PZgtYhzFkfY8Qe7S9nJXV

 

Feel free to comment.

Edited by IckyATLAS

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Checkzone works at much longer distance than 10km, but areaAttack MCU does not, it varies for ground guns and planes. (dif AAguns have dif max ranges, see below)

8.8 cm Flak has max engage of line of sight @9.5 km (ie they will start to track and fire at that range) as long as you use an appropriate areaAttack command also

The 20mm (and 37mm??, not tested) cannon AA has an about 2km limit and the MG AA is similar.

This gun range is also line of sight , not horizontal ground distance. (easy to see if u move next to an AA gun and have object icons enabled)

Also not well known but some have noted , the in spotter range and the out spotter range in game are not the same (not always)

 

Here is a copy of your mission modified with better groups to make it clearer to read.

Its set at 1000M height for the overflying PE 2 bombers.

I also added a 12km range checkZone In and message (and moved flight out a little) so you can see that checkzone works beyond 9.5km sight range on the inbound PE2's.

 

I also made all the AA guns into a formation, so u can just use commands on the leader , simplifies the logic a little.

 

AAA Artillery altitude.zip

Edited by =RS=Stix_09
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Thanks to =RS=Stix_09 to have taken time to look at my mission. I had not noticed that one could do with land based artillery pieces the same "action grouping" with a leader like for planes, ship convoys or vehicle convoys. This indeed makes things much simpler. That was a useful info. As well as demonstrating that you can detect planes over the 10km bubble.  You don't see them but you detect them.

I agree about on the line of sight distance(LOS) but let's put things in perspective :

  • At 8000 mt distance and 250 mt altitude , the LOS distance is 8004 mt.
  • At 8000 mt distance and 1000 mt altitude , the LOS distance is 8062 mt.
  • At 3000 mt distance and 1000 mt altitude , the LOS distance is 3162 mt.
  • At 1000 mt distance and 1000 mt altitude , the LOS distance is 1414 mt. This last case is significant.

When the plane is near then it starts to become significant distance between horizontal distance and Line Of Sight LOS. but the plane is in any case already inside the firing zone. So we can consider that horizontal distance remains a valid approach for a good enough approximation for the short range guns. The 88 mm gun remains an exception because of its range, if you fly at very high altitude. At 8000 mt altitude and distance, then the line of sight is 11'313 mt so out of range. 

 

The SPOTTER parameter is completely useless. You can have it set at whatever range you want or have it not checked the result is exactly the same. In the manuals it is mentioned that it is used on the GUI map to draw circles like a radar range but not more. It is the Attack Area (example centered on the gun) that would play this role. I think it has not been implemented or is buggy. 

 

I finally tested a variant by replacing the Attack Area with the Force Complete which basically meant for me STOP the action. In the manuals it can be used to switch on and off the searchlights, but it was strange to use that for artillery, or I did not find that info. And indeed as Gambit21 and  JimTM (sorry guys if I am long to understand 🙂 ) noted that:

  • Force Complete LOW all the AAA pieces do the max firing and engage at their max LOS distance.
  • Force Complete HIGH shuts everything OFF.
  • Force Complete MEDIUM setting has the guns including the 88mm engage at close range 1500 mt (LOS) or less in both directions (incoming and leaving) and very anemically.

In fact the Medium setting is equivalent to having no Force Complete or Attack Area at all. If you leave each gun active and independent on its own it behaves more or less the same as with a Force Complete with Medium setting. I could check and compare and behaviors seem identical, and indifferent to the airplane altitude. If over 2000 mt the Flak 36 or Flak 38 or MG34-aa react but do not fire, as they have no time really. 

 

In all these cases the gun range hierarchy is somewhat respected. The 88 (Flak 37) reacts always first, then comes Flak 36 and then Flak 38 at the same time as the MG34-aa.

 

I would conclude that Attack Area has to be used when you want the AAA to take action fully at a specific distance that you set, and Force Complete if you want either shut them OFF or having them work at full capability up to max range. You must also set the AI (will impact dispersion and range precision) parameter according to how much damage you want your AAA to inflict on their targets. 

 

 

 

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5 hours ago, IckyATLAS said:

...

I finally tested a variant by replacing the Attack Area with the Force Complete which basically meant for me STOP the action. In the manuals it can be used to switch on and off the searchlights, but it was strange to use that for artillery, or I did not find that info. And indeed as Gambit21 and  JimTM (sorry guys if I am long to understand 🙂 ) noted that:

...

 

Coconut had some interesting comments re. force complete here.

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