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Suppressive Fire

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  • Suppressive Fire

    Here are some excerpts from the TGU PR Suppressive Fire & Associated Tactics Module.

    What is suppressive fire?
    Suppressive fire (also known as covering fire) is a term used in military science for firing weapons at or in the direction of enemy forces with the primary goal of reducing their ability to defend themselves or return fire, by forcing them to remain under cover.

    Suppressive fire differs from lethal fire (i.e. shoot-to-kill) in that its primary objective is to get the enemy to "keep their heads down" and thus reduce their ability to move, shoot, or observe their surroundings. While soldiers may be injured or killed by suppressive fire, this is not its main purpose.

    Note that suppression is only effective if you can make the enemy believe that popping up to return fire is going to result in them getting hit or killed. You don't have to actually hit them, but you must make them think that you can and might if they don't take cover. Suppression can be used to "fix" an enemy force while another squad moves around to their flank to catch them in their unprotected or otherwise vulnerable side.

    Uses of suppressive fire
    To be effective, suppressive fire must be continuous enough to keep the enemy suppressed - that is, to force them to remain behind cover. As long as the enemy can be kept fearful of the next round coming in, they will not consider moving or shooting back. If there is so much incoming fire that the enemy can not move or shoot, the enemy is said to be pinned.

    Suppressive fire may be either aimed specifically (at an individual enemy soldier, group of soldiers, or vehicle) or generally (for example, at a building or tree line where enemy soldiers are suspected to be hiding). Suppressive fire on the enemy is vital during troop movement especially in tactical situations such as an attack on an enemy position.

    The use of suppressive fire is not limited to the use of infantry weapons. Nearly any weapon can be used to suppress the enemy, and we will go over this later on during the module.
    Some situations where suppressive fire might be used include:

    • The enemy holds a position, such as a building or trench line, perhaps reinforced with sandbags, landmines, barbed wire or other obstacles.
    • The enemy has a clear field of fire, so any force attacking them has very few places to take cover.
    • To take the enemy's position, an attacker must be able to approach without getting shot and injured or killed. The enemy's ability to shoot at attackers must be reduced.

    A typical application uses suppressive fire to advance a group of attackers against an enemy:

    • To stop the enemy from shooting at attackers, the attacking force divides in two.
    • The first group of attackers fires on the enemy. This will cause the enemy to take cover, thus minimizing their ability to return fire.
    • While the first attacking group is firing at the enemy - keeping them suppressed - the second group of attacker’s advances toward the enemy position.
    • This second group now stops, and begins laying down their suppressive fire. The first group can now advance under cover of the second group's suppressive fire.
    • The process repeats as needed, with each attacking group alternating roles (either advancing or laying down suppressive fire) until they can attack the defenders at close quarters or have a better angle of attack. This method is commonly known as leapfrogging.

    What is the suppression effect in Project Reality, and how does it work?
    When coming under fire in Project Reality, you should be FORCED to stay down. Getting shot at in real life would cause you to do this…so it was implemented in game. The way Project Reality does this for us is by making our screen turn about 50% black…like this (proceeds to shoot one shot near everybody’s feet). Your screen will also blur, and it will be very difficult to distinguish anything.

    How about some other statistics and tips?
    The suppression effect just mentioned will only happen when bullets and/or shrapnel hit within 3 meters of you. Of course, a bullet will have to hit within that area…but grenades and other explosives won’t. If a grenade explodes with in 20 meters of you, you will see the suppression effect start to take over.

    As for single shot vs. automatic and burst fire…you may want to know which one is better. Yes, a single shot will put the suppression effect on the enemy….but it won’t pin him. A large amount of lead flying down range is what we want. This will create a very dangerous position on the enemy’s part, as if they even move they risk being killed. You want to be shooting at the static objects around the enemy’s position more so than the actual enemy. Yes, if a good shot opens up, take it…and if you see somebody poke their head out, spray some shots over in their direction…but killing isn’t the objective here.

    The suppression effects will NOT happen when shots land on surfaces that the bullet will penetrate... i.e. tin fences, supply truck doors, etc. Another time when the suppression effect will not happen is when you shoot at destructible buildings. Keep this in mind when tasked by your squad leader to lay down suppressive fire.

    Different weapons, different effects.
    Contrary to popular belief, many different weapons can be used to suppress an enemy position. The Squad Automatic Weapon, also referred to as the SAW, is designed for this role. When I run a squad, more often than not I try to have somebody in the squad carry one around. Other kits that can have devastating suppression effects are the following:

    • Grenadier. With their grenade launcher, they can put accurate explosives downrange. More often than not this will lead the enemy troops to scramble to cover. Another great feature to this kit is the smoke grenades they can launch out there too. This can completely obscure the enemy’s view of you while you advance on their position. It isn’t exactly suppression, and it won’t pin the enemy down…but is just as effective.
    • Anti-Tank. Have you ever had a L-AT hit you while in a fortified position? I bet you got down and took cover. This is a great tool when attacking an enemy fortification. Not only is it highly lethal and can take out bunkers…but it will keep the enemy down while moving up. Like the Grenadier kit, it won’t pin the enemy, but it will do the job.
    • Marksman. Accurate, semi-automatic, long range fire will pin the enemy down. Getting shot in the head isn’t exactly something that you want to happen to you. Do NOT use the Sniper to do this. His ROF isn’t near what it needs to be to suppress the enemy.
    • Standard Issue Rifle. Nearly everybody has these. Officers, medics, riflemen, engineers…while not overwhelming like the above might be, they are necessary to add in to the suppressive fire. If they aren’t, your heavy hitters (SAW, Grenadier, Anti-Tank, and Marksman) will be picked off. Fire superiority should be your thoughts here. Put more lead downrange towards the enemy than they can put at you. Your help will be much appreciated.

  • #2
    Re: Suppressive Fire

    I tried to surpress an apc with m203 smoke (& alot of ammo) the other day, it almost worked, giving some slight cover to my squad under fire.

    Unfortunately I did not use indirect fire (the arc of fire) enough and he moved to engage my position directly and put an end to that!

    If you find yourself in a fair fight, then you have obviously failed to plan properly.


    • #3
      Re: Suppressive Fire

      It is best, when suppressing an enemy squad, to have at least 3 guys (one MUST have either a marksman, SAW, grenadier, or L-AT and plenty of ammo) shooting at the enemy nonstop. If you don't, the suppressive element will get picked off. If you do not have a heavy asset mentioned above (the ones in italics) a good rule of thumb is to have 4 or 5 guys suppress and the remainder keep situational awareness for the squad while another friendly squad does the flanking manuever.




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