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Use Directionals within Fire Teams

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  • [INFO] Use Directionals within Fire Teams

    For the love of all things simple please use the Directional method for calling a direction of enemies when you are talking to your fire team that is within 10 meters of you.

    It simply takes too long to pull up a compass and let it settle, then read the tiny little numbers when you can use the terms "front", "left", "half-right", "rear".

    Take a look at this from the Tactical Gamer University - Basic Infantry Course.


    [INDENT]Directional
    A “directional” is called based on your teams direction of movement. When your team has been moving north you can call a sighting “RIGHT”. This indicates an enemy to your right and everyone will look to the east. If you call out “EAST” you may have team members who are unsure they are moving north and which way east is.

    FRONT - directly ahead to where your team is moving
    LEFT - directly to the 90 degree left of the teams direction of movement
    RIGHT - directly to the 90 degree right of the teams direction of movement
    HALF LEFT - anywhere between 90 degrees left and forward
    HALF RIGHT - anywhere between 90 degrees right and forward
    REAR - anywhere behind left or right, the full 180 degree arc

    HALF LEFT or HALF RIGHT is the entire region between your 90 degree flank and forward. It does NOT mean 45 degrees.

    These directionals are the best means for calling out direction while travelling because everyone knows your direction of movement. The the times it is not effective are is when you are at a long halt or defending a static position.

    |TG-189th| Unkl
    ArmA 3 Game Officer
    Dean of Tactical Gamer University
    189th Infantry Brigade Member
    SUBMIT A RIBBON NOMINATION OR CONTACT AN ARMA ADMIN
    "We quickly advance in the opposite direction and take cover in a house on the SW side of town." - BadStache

  • #2
    Re: Use Directionals within Fire Teams

    Good reminder. I find myself using bearings probably too often but I would also point out the bearing is also on the GPS. I roll with the GPS up and running most of the time. When someone calls a contact at bearing ___________ I'm watching that GPS and the bearing indicator rather than bringing up the compass. Is that gaming the system...? Not sure about that but going forward I'll try to directionals exclusively.
    sigpic
    |TG-1st|Grunt
    ARMA Admin (retired)
    Pathfinder-Spartan 5

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    • #3
      Re: Use Directionals within Fire Teams

      Unkl doesn't need more reps.

      TGU Instructor · TG Pathfinder

      Former TGU Dean · Former ARMA Admin · Former Irregulars Officer

      "Do not seek death. Death will find you. But seek the road which makes death a fulfillment." - Dag Hammarskjold

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      • #4
        Re: Use Directionals within Fire Teams

        Well, I guess it would depend on distance to target, wouldn't it? If it's a guy closer than 300m, you can get away with directionals. However, bearings are more useful the closer you are to your friendly units because of the minute angle difference. So if a bad guy is sitting 600m away with a marksman rifle, I'd rather call out a bearing OR use directionals combined with a description, eg. "Contact half-right, 600m, marksman in a window" etc.

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        • #5
          Re: Use Directionals within Fire Teams

          That is a great point Hummel. I had the urge to add that to my post too but I already post to much :D

          If you are at a halt, then for close contacts or sightings then you may want to use the terms North, East, South-West. For longer or hard to see targets you may need to be more specific. In this case, there is discretion in how you should report it.

          It could be more effective that you call out a general direction first for the rest of the team. Then guide your AT with an accurate bearing so they can remain behind cover to spot that hull-down APC. You know in a situation like that, it is getting pretty nit-picky to criticize how you call a direction. What is important is to get a direction called first so the team is aware of that before they know details like range or what direction the sighting is moving.

          What brought it up for me is moving through a small village building by building where a team member is 2 buildings over and giving me a compass bearing to a spotted target only 100m away. This bearing is all but useless to me or to anyone but the team member standing right behind that same player. In order for this to make any sense, I have to judge the distance to player reporting the contact, the distance to target and then work out a relative bearing from myself.

          Again, that may be a better option if the reporting player needs to get the report out and worry about saving their own bacon. But, with practice, the clock-ray method would be better for both persons. If they use the building in between them as a reference point and then in their mind impose a clock face on it. The 12-o-clock position faces your direction of movement. Then call out the direction to target in terms of "o-clock" from that reference point.

          "Sighting, from tin shed left of squad lead, 2-o-clock, far right window - red roof, 100m, at least 1 infantry inside."

          If you were calling out a compass bearing at this point you could easily be off by 10-20 degrees and your teammates may not take adequate cover. The important thing is to use the simple methods first, like directionals that are easy to understand and fastest to process. Then move to more difficult methods as needed. The clock ray, the cardinal points (North, North-East), the compass bearings all take more time to process on behalf of the reporter and the receiver. This additional processing time can slow down you putting guns on target when travelling and targets are close. So try to use them only for situations when they will speed up putting guns on target because:
          • your team is at a halt and has no direction of movement as a reference
          • your targets are difficult to spot or at range where accuracy of reports will make target acquisition faster
          |TG-189th| Unkl
          ArmA 3 Game Officer
          Dean of Tactical Gamer University
          189th Infantry Brigade Member
          SUBMIT A RIBBON NOMINATION OR CONTACT AN ARMA ADMIN
          "We quickly advance in the opposite direction and take cover in a house on the SW side of town." - BadStache

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          • #6
            Re: Use Directionals within Fire Teams

            Totally with you Unkl on escalating detail, starting simple to get the squad moving/reacting.

            Simplicity and ease of delivery/processing with added granularity based on need and time available is good when relaying info.

            A close contact often requires less info as visual and audio sign gives the person receiving the broadcast much of the missing info at the same time. Contact close calls are almost just a 'heads up', the gunfire sound helps round out the picture.

            Longer distance contacts require more granularity and usually afford more time to deliver the additional detail.

            I usually base everything off the direction of movement. So close contacts are 'front or forward, front left or forward left/front or forward right, left or right, rear left or right and rear' followed by 'close'. As distance increases I'll then add in a bearing if I can, distance and a descriptor (unit size, composition, direction of movement etc).

            For me the key issue is practicality not procedure. Aim for the best, simple procedure and don't get hung up in misteps or minor detail deviations during execution.

            The simpler a procedure is the easier it is to remember which promotes consistency. It also makes it easier and quicker to carry out under live conditions.


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