Saturday, August 1, 2009

ArmA 2 Tactical Vignette #1: Leapfrogging a Marine Squad onto Hill 368 (Part 4)

What a Marine would do?

Don't look at me, I'm asking you! :)

As a civilian, best thing I can do is guess taking into account what I read here and there. If you are a real Marine or know better, I will really appreciate your comments.
  • The USMC strongly believes in control of fires (after playing ArmA 2, so do I). Squad leaders should make sure that overwhelming fire is delivered on a single target rather than each squad member choosing the target he pleases. Each fire team should have just one target at a time. (careful with the meaning of the word "target" here: it also indicates an enemy formation, like a squad or section)
  • When moving by bounding overwatch, only one element/fireteam moves at a time.
  • When moving through big danger areas, all attached MGs (SAWs if those are not available) should provide overwatch.
  • When moving to contact by bounding overwatch, the measure of success is how much firepower can be mustered on the enemy at the very instant contact occurs.
That's all I have. Again, feel free to comment below if you have more information.

So, to try the points explained above I organized my squad as follows.

Don't always stick to doctrinally-correct fire teams: re-organize your squad as your mission requires. Don't be shy, real life Marines aren't! Image is clickeable.

Team red has all the SAWs of the squad plus a FTL with a grenade launcher. It is the team with the biggest firepower.

In terms of firepower, team blue follows with its two AT specialists one R and one FTL with a grenade launcher.

The least firepower is carried by team yellow.

The squad organization I've chosen has a reasonable amount of moving parts (I've always had problems commanding more than 3 fire teams) and creates variability among those parts in terms of firepower (maybe in terms of mobility too: are ARs slower than Rs in ArmA 2?).

Off course no matter how you organize your squad for a bounding overwatch movement, the total firepower of your squad is always the same. But having teams with different firepower gives you the flexibility of choosing when and where your team/s with the biggest punch will be moving and aiming.

I ordered team yellow to move some 100 meters ahead, while teams red and blue provided overwatch. Team yellow soon spotted the enemy, and I could rapidly order teams red and blue to target the enemy.

An AR from team red overwatches the movement of team yellow. Image is clickeable.

The firefight lasted for 15 seconds or so, and again team yellow could still move while the bullets were flying. The Russian squad was wiped out and the Marines got one man injured (see below).

The injuries of #6. Image is clickeable.

In closing, bounding overwatch appears to work in the virtual battlefield of ArmA 2. There are many ways to execute this movement technique (I've just explored two in this blog) and the player will have to choose one based on the tactical situation at hand, his personal preferences for command and control, etc.

One has to remember that every tactical problem has not "a solution" but "many solutions". In the end, all that matters is to kill the enemy and arrive to the other side of the danger zone alive.


No comments: