August 01, 2015

Tank Tactic – The Mouse Trap

These in-game tactics will work against a human opponent, but may not necessarily work against the AI.  The reason is that they depend on getting inside your opponent’s head to encourage him to react a certain way that you can take advantage of. 

This type of psychological warfare will often go un-noticed by your opponent if successful.  

The Mouse Trap

This is a technique that whenever the situation allows I will attempt.  I have had good success with it, and a few failures.  Whenever you are counting on making your opponent react in a certain way there is always a chance that he may not take the bait.

Components:
·         Bait - A tank or a halftrack attempts to get noticed, by movement and/or area fire
·         Mouse – The target.  The Enemy tank moves towards the bait in order to attack it on a flank or block its advance
·         Hammer – A tank (or AT asset) in position along the route the mouse is expected to take, fires on and destroys the enemy tank (mouse) as it drives by towards the bait



This works best when operating against single tanks, or a two-tank section.

IN ACTION:

During my CMFI-GL BETA AAR (Eye of the Elephant) I had just lost a Pz-IVH to a hidden M10… I knew approximately where this enemy vehicle was but I did not have a firm spot on it.  By the way in this game that was my first armored vehicle loss, my opponent had two out of an original four M-10s left.  Killing this TD was essential to open up this avenue of approach.  I did know that he had split up these last two TDs and the second one could not support my target.

Setting the Bait: I quickly moved a halftrack and a Pz-IVH directly towards the enemy TD, the Pz-IVH and started to area fire to get his attention... in case he didn’t get a FOW icon I wanted him to know that I had a tank in that area.  
"My plan for the M10 near Tame was to reposition one Pz-IV and a halftrack around the flank.. this (I hoped) would force GaJ to move his M10 to another spot... in the meantime I pushed my Brummbar that was in Tame up to the position where my infantry team was when it spotted the M10.." My AAR

The intent was to get him to move his M-10 in the attempt of getting a flank shot on my Pz-IVH.  Remember he had just killed a Pz-IVH, I’m sure he thought he could grind my entire advance to a halt if he could destroy this second one.

 Taking the Cheese:  The M-10 takes the bait!  It leaves its secure position and moves to attack or block my Pz-IVH.  From my opponents point of view he noticed the Pz-IVH and the halftrack, but did not see the Brummbar move into position.
"Over on the right hand side, it seems that Bil has calculated that he can't get his forces up from Tame direct to SMI while I have the M10 covering that route from rear of the map. So he has sent two tanks off back around the far side of Tame with an apparent mission to come up the back of the map and remove this obstacle. I don't know if he knows that I know ... I actually have an HQ unit that got stranded near Tame now hiding out down there (you can see on the map above): this is helping me keep tabs on this kind of change of tack from Bil." - Green As Jade's AAR
In the above quote, GAJ thought that there were "two tanks" moving on the back side of Tame, where in fact there was only one, and a half-track.  

Triggering the Hammer: My Brummbar, which was in a hull down position watching for the enemy M-10, spots the TD as it drives to the flank of my Pz-IVH, spots and fires quickly eliminating the enemy TD.
"Meanwhile, over near Tame, Bil caught me completely by surprise by rushing his Brumbar on that side forwards. This was a complete bummer, because over there my other M10 was maneuvering to try to get the jump on Bil's PzIVh coming around the back. This maneuver took it right into the sights of the rushing forward Brummbar, and that was the end of that. 
I really had thought that the Brummbar was either part of the group coming around the back, or staying back to keep shelling SMI. What a downer!" Green As Jade's AAR



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