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  • Smoke squad

    After FNF (and some training on using an Australian Peel during a retreat) I led a squad to experiment with using a squad fully equipped to exploit smoke. The idea is that everyone would be equipped with IRNV scopes to see through smoke, and suppressors/flash suppressors to mask their muzzle flashes, allowing us to flood a fight with smoke and pick off enemies inside the cloud. Sometimes it worked, sometimes it didn't, but we learned things!

    Some takeaways:
    • The new crossbow smoke bolts are great for this. They've got a flat trajectory unlike the underbarrel smoke launchers (allowing for more precise placement) and have no minimum range, while having similar smoke duration and radius. Not sure what the ammo is like, but I believe its a lot more than the 2 shots the underbarrel gets! It also means any class can be dropping the smoke.
    • Underbarrel smoke launchers are still helpful; for one, they leave your pistol slot free (for more smoke, for sensor darts, for a weapon, whatever), but their arced trajectory does allow for indirect fire at range which is occasionally quite helpful.
    • It's best for one or two people to be responsible for smoke, rather than the entire squad engaging in it. This way more guns stay up.
    • Sensor darts and motion spotters are extremely helpful with this tactic, since smoke will disorient your squad to a degree.
    • Similarly, killing enemy motion spotters and being mindful of sensor darts is important, as sensor blips will give the enemy crucial information you're trying to deny them!
    • There's a setting somewhere (which I didn't manage to find) that substantially alters how transparent smoke is for IRNV; basically, any shadows being cast into the particle cloud will render afterwards and end up obscuring targets even through the scope. Turning that off makes this work a lot better.
    • The enemy eventually gets wise and equips their own IRNV. Not all of them will, but it will reduce your advantage after a while.
    • Avoid putting smoke down until you actually need it; part of that is to avoid tipping off the enemy sooner than you need to, but you also limit your own visibility around smoke. The best time to drop smoke is when the enemy is attacking in force or when breaching a building
    • Medics need to be very cognizant of the effect that their medical tools have in smoke; any additive particles (like the medic heal, AOE heal, or resurrection device) will show in the smoke, outlining your squad for anyone who cares to see them. Avoid using the AOE heal, and be smart with the med tool.
    • Similarly, your personal shield will flash and reveal you when hit, OR when recharging! The moment you take damage the smoke is no longer obscuring you, so get to cover!
    • Heavies will need to be cognizant that popping their shield ability will light them up.
    • MAX units don't operate well in smoke (unless they have the new thermal implant).
    • Some enemies just won't be affected by smoke, because they've turned particles off or culling has removed the smoke cloud for them. Against those individuals you're actually at a disadvantage having to see them with the IRNV sights. Just something that needs to be taken into account.
    I didn't have the implants to test this, but I also strongly suspect that the thermal vision and carapace implants will work very nicely with this. The thermal vision for obvious reasons (allowing you to forgo the night vision scope as well as hip fire effectively), but the carapace will also (I think?) remove the shield flash because it converts your shield to additional HP.

    This isn't great as a general use strategy, has a lot of potential flaws and counters, and can be a bit finicky within PS2's rendering tech. However, it's a fun set of gear to play with as a squad, and it's got a niche in breaches and point defenses. I'd try to avoid using it in situations where your allies are already established, though, so that the only rage tells you receive come from the enemy.




  • #2
    Looks nice on paper but remember that you can disable smoke through .ini settings, thats how most players from the top outfits run their settings!

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    • #3
      Just use the smoke quickly then. If its broken we don't want to make it hard on ourselves. So use it when picking up or crossing cuz its really a quick thing and wont hurt what your doing. If you have to take time to plan gear up for a smoke run your just taking a gamble then. quick pickups.



      FUN FUN

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      • #4
        Originally posted by Bl4xxn View Post
        Looks nice on paper but remember that you can disable smoke through .ini settings, thats how most players from the top outfits run their settings!
        We actually ran it against live players, and it seemed effective if a little gimmicky. I expect it's solid enough for hitting a zerg or doing a point hold against random enemies, just don't try and use it against DA. It's not good for a long term engagement in any case; it becomes less effective the more the enemy is wise to you.

        It is, however, a neat way to change things up from regular play.




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        • #5
          yeah have been seeing a lot of smoke recently. It does add to the game in a fun way.



          FUN FUN

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          • #6
            I was thinking of a possible addition to this squad. If one of the ideal situations for this squad is a quick defensive response to a base, then it would be easy to have one (or more likely two) members pull flashes with the new smoke screen that is currently in pts. Having 8-16 seconds of solid smoke that covers a large area consistently would be a huge asset for an initial breach as it would free up all guns, no one would have to worry about constantly laying down more smoke, and the smoke remains thick for a significant amount of time. (not to mention having say a shotgun or kobalt on the flash would be a great addition) After the first violent breach we can transition into x-bow/under-barrel/smoke nades for extra smoke as necessary.

            I know this entire strat is a bit niche but I thought this might be a nice addition/force multiplier.

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            • #7
              If it's a flash with scout radar, that'd give a pretty substantial situational awareness boost. Give it a Kobalt or shotty, as you say, and it can lock down a doorway very effectively.



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              • #8
                Had a "Smoke Squad" run tonight, here's a piece meal AAR as well as some thoughts of mine.

                (these all may be out of order but it is 1 am... so give me some slack)


                Squads Composition: 3 medic, 2-3 engineers, 5-6 heavys, 1 infil
                Kits: Close Quarter, Anti-Infantry, All primaries need HS/NV Scope (themal scope), a few designated people with smoke as well.

                Mani Tower (TR):
                Spawn on sunderer and we move into the base, setup on second floor and we wait. We start to see an equal force start to respond to the base and our smokes start rolling out. A few light assualts got some decent portions of the squad at times but due to the smoke, cross fire from open to closed room was nearly impossible so it made recoveries from losing a room full of guys relatively simple. Fight went very well and the base was capped in TG's favor. Galaxy was pulled and we moved to our next base.

                Haven outpost (TR):
                Galaxy is flying into this base and I was going to drop our infil (vlad) on the vehicle terminal to hack us out a sunderer. Due to enemies already around the terminal (about 5) we told our infil to drop with the main squad. From there we dropped onto the triple stack that has the A point and setup another second floor hold. Smokes started to roll out almost immediately due to the abundance of contacts. The smokes defiantly made shooting the enemies from the top of the stairs much more easy. On top of our smoke help the whole squad was communicating and reacting to threats (maxes/pushes) very well. We held the base for about 2 mins 20 seconds before the 70% overpop took us out with I think 4 or more maxes at once. (someone correct me on that I wasn't on the side of the push when it happened). Over all though we held our own against some pretty demanding odds as well as keeping a few recursion down too!

                Ymir Mine Watch / Ymir Eastern Way Station (VS):
                Oh boy was this a fun two fights. First we were en route to Mine watch in a galaxy. Orders were to keep galaxy at around 400m on the way in and while the squad was dropping for everyone to smoke the triple stacks roof with all their smokes before they hit it. Once feet hit the roof we would do a violent clear on the north roof stairs. A decent number of VS were properly held in the room however, the smoke defiantly impaired them. Once the enemy was wiped we picked up in the galaxy and moved to Eastern Way Station. Our drop was on the South Western door and the drop orders were the same as the last base, smoke the area as we fall from the galaxy and then get into the point. This time things were not too effective and the squad got wiped due to us landing directly where all the reinforcements were coming in, Squad respawned in spawn room and we went to the west of spawn and stop just shy of the north eastern corner of the A point building. From there orders were to throw grenades into a window on the north side of the building and then to smoke the entire room through that window. This took just about 7 seconds and then we breached with the rest of the NC. It seemed the friendlies generally pushed up every time we set smoke out. Once A was re-secured we moved back out the north door and to the left where there was a slightly raised ridge that we could use as a base of fire. I set a line with two colored smoke points and said to smoke everything inbetween the two points. The rest of the squad just went to town on anyone who dared cross our smoke field.

                Fell asleep here and the rest of last night was a blur, so if anyone cares to do a write up on the many other successful bases we had, please feel free.

                One of my favorite Yell chats from the night came from a TR soldier. It read: "Note to self: the smoke is dangerous."

                I would have to say, the TR's words were very accurate.

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                • #9
                  Ok, it was more chaotic then we are used too, not being able to see sometimes without looking down our sites but this was definitely easy mode. Everywhere we went that was short to medium range we were smashing over twice our number with no more difficulty than we would normally at half that. Surprising still was that the enemy did not adapt as much as we all had theorized. Maybe a few equipped IR scopes but for the most part they just kept showing up right into our smoke pain fields. More over, they since we used suppressors, they never new how many of us there really was. Without sensors, we were not showing up on their Mini maps or their screens. Easy mode :) Note to engies: Bring spitfire turrets to these squads, they see through the smoke too!

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                  • #10
                    lol the spitfire :)



                    FUN FUN

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                    • #11
                      Ahahah, oh geez, I'd forgotten that the spitfire would be perfect for this! Yeah, absolutely keep a spitfire in the back. :)

                      Awesome AAR Muffin!



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