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Asheara

Tanks - Damage improvements

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Okay, so I have come up with an idea that will improve on the current system, without becoming too difficult for the player-base to understand, and hopefully not unrealistic to program for you developers - given the timeframe until launch.

 

My main gripe right now is primarily condensed down to two issues:

 

  1. Damage mechanic modules and tank destruction mechanic.
  2. HEAT simulation not being consistent across weapon platforms, but you have the recipe for it (PCML).

To help illustrate the way I suggest it works, I have made some crude drawings and examples of how vehicles react to various attack types with HEAT weapons.

 

Firstly, let's look at the MBT-52's real life counterpart, a Leopard: (no I couldn't find the Leopard 2SG internals, so a A4 will do).

 

I have added some extra possible damage modules to it:

 

Leopard_2_A4_3_extra_modules.png

 

As you may see, I have added three new module types:

  • Optics
  • Ammunition
  • Electronics

Optics and Electronics

These two generally cause the same effects to happen. When taking damage, just like jets and helis, all displays/instruments/mfd's may start glitching/flashing. Additionally, it could disable the FCS of the tank, forcing you to use manual ranging and aiming.

The external modules should be susceptible to damage from high-caliber ammunition and medium/large explosives. (Multiple hits from 12.7mm or 40mm grenades, very few hits from 30mm (autocannon) and up.)

The internal modules are well protected, and only susceptible to damage from penetrating rounds (HEAT, AP).

 

Ammunition

This is a huge dealbreaker for many, I know. The absence of ammo-racks in the vanilla game, coupled with a unrealiable vehicle health-pool makes aiming your shots nearly pointless. However, if tank destruction was linked directly to ammo storage detonation (or engine compartment/fuel compartment catastrophic failure), it would make combat much more predictable and realistic. Learning the vehicle's weak spots in a game with relatively few armored vehicles, is no more difficult than to remember how to aim for the drivers window in cars. You learn it fast.

I personally wish that this is the way you blow up vehicles. Think about it as the equivalent of a "head shot" on a soldier with full body armor.

 

Destruction mechanic

Please, get rid of the way that "everything" that hits a vehicle will add damage to it's global health. If it were up to me, I'd establish the following rules:

  1. non-penetrating hits that ricochet cause 0 damage to the vehicles global health.
  2. non-penetrating hits that fragment/stop on the armor cause zero-to-minor damage to the global health (simulating denting).
  3. penetrating hits that pass through the hull cause about 1-2% damage to global health (depending on caliber. 1-2% was a hypthetical value for 120mm - meaning you'd need 50-100 shots to turn a tank into swiss cheeze).
  4. explosive hit damage has to meet a certain minimum value (which is quite high for tanks) before dealing damage to the global health, but can damage internals at a lower threshold value (simulating shock inside a vehicle). 
  5. A vehicle will only explode if:
  • Ammunition detonates due to "ammo module" destruction.
  • global health reaches "0" due to either extreme amounts of AP/HEAT penetrations, massive explosive damage (large IED, mines, air-dropped bombs, artillery), catastrophic fuel/engine failure or extreme velocity collisions (driving off a cliff?).

 

 

 

Now let's look at how HEAT ammunition should/could work in ArmA 3:

 

First of all here are some good examples on real life anti-tank missiles, that behave the same as ArmA3 missiles, in terms of warheads:

 

The TOW-2A (direct attack missile. warhead style compares to Titan-AT, and RPG with Tandem warhead)

tow2_A_explained.png

 

And the TOW-2B (Overfly attack missile, comparable to the PCML in ArmA).

tow2_B_explained.png

 

As you can see from the images, the Tow-2A has a tandem HEAT warhead, that should effectively defeat ERA-equipped tanks, and must impact the target directly. The penetrating potential is directly along the missile's longitudinal axis (forwards). As such, hitting the sides of modern tanks is not really that desirable, since they are well protected here. This is why the Tow-2B achieves better results against armor, because it detonates above the target, where the armor is thinner. This is also why weapons with forward facing tandem charges, such as the Javelin, Hellfire or Titan-AT favor a "Top-Down" attack against armor, because during top-down attack, the shaped charges are facing downwards towards the turret roof.

 

A third reference image from the Titan-AT equivalent (Rafael Spike AT missile)

Spike_Titan_missile_tandem.png

 

 

Now from what I can tell, HEAT is currently extremely inconveniently designed in ArmA3. Even with the latest update, both the RPG-7, Titan AT, tank cannon HEAT rounds etc do NOT produce a shaped charge jet, or "projectile". However, for some reason, the PCML does! So what you need to figure out BI, is how to incorporate that mechanic into the other warheads. The PCML "creates" a projectile submunition that travels through vehicles much like AP rounds do. This is the kind of compromise you have to aim for with the game engine limitations. I believe you can pull it off by using the same principles applied with the PCML.

 

Simply put: make the missile/weapon explode on impact, then generate a submunition projectile that penetrates the vehicle.

 

If you can do that, then we can finally have the following scenarios:

 

I have drawn these crude examples to show you how improved HEAT and damage mechanics could work in ArmA:

NOTE: Click the images to view them in a better size for reading/viewing.

 

direct_attack_example.png

 

Overfly_attack_example.png

 

Top_attack_example.png

 

 

 

And finally, how different countermeasures to HEAT may react, where HEAT fails to penetrate the hull:

Non_penetration_examples_HEAT.png

 

 

 

Now taking all this into consideration, you end up with tanks that only explode when they should (ammo failure or engine/fuel explosion), better HEAT simulation both in terms of "behind armor effects" and countermeasures. And best of all, get rid of the poormans' solution with "indirectHit" spheres that are omnipotent to an area of the tank.

 

 

 

I didn't squeeze in AP details, because there have already been so many tickets/reports on the AP behavior.

 

Also, I did not take into consideration the following points due to complexity, performance cost and short deadline to DLC release:

  • Spalling
  • Internal fragmentation
  • More modules (turret traverse drive, elevation drive, gun breech, gearbox, drivetrain etc).

 

 

 

 

I firmly believe that most of the damage-interested community would agree with my point of view on these things, and also, that for the "ignorant community" (no offense) that just want to enjoy ArmA, it's not too overly complicated. Give it a like if you agree, quote and trash me if you don't :)


Cheers! 

 

 

 

 

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Actually, driving a tank off a cliff may kill the crew, but it should cause the tank to explode unless the ammo is not secured properly. I'd suggest that for ammo racks, they should use the RHS solution - "hull" hitpoint would represent ammunition. That way, tanks won't explode from shots to the tracks or to the engine (which is silly).

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Hello again,

I've tried to shed the light on how the new upgrades work with this documentation.

Enjoy yourself, and if anything is unclear, please let me know!

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1 minute ago, Asheara said:

Hello again,

I've tried to shed the light on how the new upgrades work with this documentation.

Enjoy yourself, and if anything is unclear, please let me know!

Thank you for your service.

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15 minutes ago, dragon01 said:

I'd suggest that for ammo racks, they should use the RHS solution - "hull" hitpoint would represent ammunition. That way, tanks won't explode from shots to the tracks or to the engine (which is silly).

 

That's a clever engine workaround, but having dedicated ammo module could be used by modders more creatively :)

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16 minutes ago, dragon01 said:

Actually, driving a tank off a cliff may kill the crew, but it should cause the tank to explode unless the ammo is not secured properly. I'd suggest that for ammo racks, they should use the RHS solution - "hull" hitpoint would represent ammunition. That way, tanks won't explode from shots to the tracks or to the engine (which is silly).

 

That is actually sort of in progress. HitHull has the chance of randomly exploding vehicle, therefore this hitzone should be now smaller, harder to reach and basically serve this purpose.

 

@Strike_NOR The damage modules you've proposed are nice and make sense! However, despite the fact that we've been considering these (both optics and ammo rack) and even had some prototype, we've decided to focus on the component system and the armor simulations, as this entire damage enhancement is a gargantuan piece of work. We'll already have our hands full to balance all this on time - as few of you already noted, some of those values are merely a placeholder. We don't have enough people nor enough time till release to actually make it happen. I'm sorry.

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While im really curious to see the effects of the enhanced armour simulation in actual gameplay (MP) I still habe the question what it means for the crew inside. Currently (1.80) all crew mostly gets beamed in a unharmed state outside of the vehicle (kind of 2035 emergency transporter) and continous to fight until the vehicle finally explodes. 

 

Is there now a better chance of harmed crew behind armour?

Would it be possible to teach AI to get away from vehicles that are about to explode instead of attacking the lone RPG man?

 

Those factors are also a good part of the "tank game" and not purely cosmetic.

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27 minutes ago, Asheara said:

That is actually sort of in progress. HitHull has the chance of randomly exploding vehicle, therefore this hitzone should be now smaller, harder to reach and basically serve this purpose

This is uplifting! :) Then hithull can work as a compromise and technically serve as ammo rack.

 

Any news on the HEAT "projectile" as seen on the PCML? this warhead type should technically be found in ATGM's, mines, Air to Ground missiles etc.

 

As for the modules "letdown" it's ok. Thanks for being honest. On a side note:

Where can i submit my application for Arma4 consultant? :D

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OFP had working crew damage.

I am not sure why it no longer works.

 

One reason may be that in OFP a T80/M1A1 could survive 2-4 sabot hits, and 3-5 HEAT hits,

whereas since A1, basically one sabot destroys the tank no matter what.

 

So it could be merely a configuration issue (not sure what to adjust for it though),

or the engine setup/coding (for crew damage) no longer fits post-OFP configuration,

or there were actually engine issues introduced after OFP.

 

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Maybe, for the slat armour, the amount of damage required to destroy it could be randomised. Have the chance increase for each subsequent hit as well, so maybe 25% first hit, 60% second and 80% third and beyond. Honestly, more damage needs to be randomised.

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8 minutes ago, mjolnir66 said:

Maybe, for the slat armour, the amount of damage required to destroy it could be randomised. Have the chance increase for each subsequent hit as well, so maybe 25% first hit, 60% second and 80% third and beyond. Honestly, more damage needs to be randomised.

While not a bad  concept, I personally and most people I know don't like randomised things in simulators or games like arma 3

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8 hours ago, Asheara said:

 if anything is unclear, please let me know!

Is it correct, that as soon as a projectile touches a component that the hit value is counted and damage transferred? Does the component have inherrent material values? What i mean by that is, say, the component is 50mm thick and has armor.rvmat applied in fire geo. How does it work with the simulation? Is the 50mm armor from rvmat counted (projectile loses speed due to material penetration), and then on top the armorsimulation config speed modifier apply? Or does the bullet ignore the applied rvmat and ONLY use the armorsimulation config speed modifier, and if so, does the passing through cause an explosive projectile (explosive property>=0.7) like HE to explode?

 

If it does not ignore rvmat, then what is the purpose of speed modifiers for HEAT and HE? Do HEAT weapons generate a penetrating projectile now ? Otherwise i dont understand the idea of having speed modifier values for those warheads - because with they way they where set up before, they immediately explode upon impact, like HE, and just do more direct hit damage and less indirect damage. They terminate on first impact, so any speed modifier would be useless.

 

I'd like to repeat, that a formula for ricochet chance by impactangle, depending on deflection ammo config value would be very helpfull for tuning.

 

7 hours ago, Beagle said:

Is there now a better chance of harmed crew behind armour?

Based on what i see, no there is not so far. The only thing changed was that you can now use 3d modelled components as opposed to dotting everything with hitpoint "spheres". It's something, but not what i had hoped for. You'd still have to land a precise direct penetrating hit on them.

Theoretically they could put a larger box or volume around the person, define it as component, call it "HitCrew" and execute a script that hurts or kills the crew in case this component gets hit or grazed. Thus you can define a bigger volume than the actual human body fire geometry -> crude aproximation of shrapnell effects.

 

7 hours ago, Strike_NOR said:

Where can i submit my application for Arma4 consultant? :D

Hey, get in line with the rest :P

 

Edit: reyhard informed me, that the "Shots" arma3_diag mode now works. For anyone doing testing, i recommend using it.

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Possible solutions to choose the aiming in the visible parts of the enemy tank?

https://feedback.bistudio.com/T83551

Was mistakenly closed due to my ticket

https://feedback.bistudio.com/T120784

Possible solutions to overcome water obstacles, permissible depth?

Possible solutions to the lack of multiple penetration for one round?

https://feedback.bistudio.com/T83551

 

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Now, i think i just found a good example by chance, why information on ricochet chance and "random bullet exit deviation angle" and tweaking of thereof might be a good idea:

Shot went in on turret side, got deflected inside by something, or exited a piece armor/geometry at a ludicrous angle (aprox 70°), then exited on other sides of the turret through the armor. This is a pretty ridiculous projectile path. Rubber projectiles confirmed.

20180223004220_1bvk12.jpg

 

20180223003736_1xpjgq.jpg

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30 minutes ago, x3kj said:

This is a pretty ridiculous projectile path. Rubber projectiles confirmed.

See the third video, my post has changed above. This is reproduced on DEV. The strength of the round does not weaken:
- from the distance traveled, only the trajectory changes
- passes through many obstacles

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7 hours ago, x3kj said:

reyhard informed me, that the "Shots" arma3_diag mode now works. For anyone doing testing, i recommend using it

Is this executed from within the main .exe or the diag.exe version? Was looking for this on wednesday, but couldnt find it.

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Heya @Asheara please consider scalability of the system for community warhead types by adding baseclasses to

class Armor_CAGE
class Armor_ERA_Heavy
class Armor_ERA_Light

class Default for these to inherit from.

This way community creators can simply add their own Warhead types to class Default and rest assured that all other Official and Community-Made Armor-Simulations (that inherit correctly from class Default) will have the new Warheads, too.
An easy way to establish compatibility across various mods without requiring explicit compatibility class patching.
A baseclass will make this a lot easier to config-patch, too.

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1 hour ago, mondkalb said:

Heya @Asheara please consider scalability of the system for community warhead types by adding baseclasses to


class Armor_CAGE
class Armor_ERA_Heavy
class Armor_ERA_Light

class Default for these to inherit from.

This way community creators can simply add their own Warhead types to class Default and rest assured that all other Official and Community-Made Armor-Simulations (that inherit correctly from class Default) will have the new Warheads, too.
An easy way to establish compatibility across various mods without requiring explicit compatibility class patching.
A baseclass will make this a lot easier to config-patch, too.

 

Thank you for your service to the community, good sir! Will do, it's a valid suggestion, shame on me this wasn't done already ;)

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@Asheara

 

Hi, thanks for continuing to clarify and work with our feedback.

 

I'm basically trying to make out what potential this component based system has for the community.

 

I have read through the old guide, and tried to apply the knowledge there to the component system and I have a really simple setup to ask about.


Consider the following setup:

hitpoint_guide_components.png
image hosting

 

Am I correct to understand:

  • Modders can now create as many new component and ammo types as they wish, and define how they interact?
  • These new armor components can be stacked and placed freely as in the above image?
  • Thickness of components are disregarded, but since speed and hit values are influenced this heavily influences the projectiles ability to penetrate the firegeometry?
  • Vehicles can be set up so that penetrating fire-geometry does not damage global health, but an internal "hithull" firegeometry/hitpoint combo can simulate "ammo rack" (or other critical part) leading to instant destruction?

 

I hope I made myself clear in the above points :)

 

@x3kj

Do HEAT weapons generate a penetrating projectile now ?

It appears to me that the only weapon that simulates this correctly at the moment is the PCML. I am trying to get an answer from the devs as to if this will be the new standard for ATGM's, HEAT shells, RPG's, AT mines etc (anything that is anti-tank slow/no velocity projectile). It should be this way, realistically speaking. However, I fear that It may only be possible on the PCML due to the distance between the missile and target when detonation occurs.

If the game has to:

1. Create an explosion to simulate the HEAT warhead HE element.

2. Create a submunition that simulates the Anti-Tank Jet (projectile per ArmA3 engine limitations).

3. Position this submunition at the point of impact, deduct velocity based on ERA presence and fire this through the vehicle.

 

...then it may become unreliable due to simulation speed, multiplayer network, etc.. Somehow RHS mods have managed to simulate HEAT warheads in an extremely impressive and realistic manner. Kudos to them. I was hoping BIS would copy that, and maybe refine it for optimization for Tanks DLC. So far, the PCML is the only hint towards this approach, and I hope more of the vanilla BIS weapons will follow (Macers, Scalpels, RPG's, AT-mines, Titan-AT, etc).

 

 

On a side note, I noticed the turret model disappears from the tanks when they explode. Will you eventually account for it in game? :) (Popping turrets).

Edited by Strike_NOR
Some tweaks, clarifications and extra info.
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1 hour ago, Strike_NOR said:

On a side note, I noticed the turret model disappears from the tanks when they explode. Will you eventually account for it in game? :) (Popping turrets).

 

All the Vanilla tanks have ammo storages that prevent such behavior.

 

The "flying turret syndrom" on soviet armor was due to auto-loader ammo being stored right below the turret.

So in the event of extreme ammo cookoff the turret would take off due to concentrated blast and (in case of older models) paper-thin upper hull armor.

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21 minutes ago, bars91 said:

All the Vanilla tanks have ammo storages that prevent such behavior.

 

All vanilla tanks are fictional (yet, based on real life tanks) - so they can have ammo anywhere they want.

 

Secondly, what matters isn't necessarily just where the ammo is stored, but whether or not the ammo compartment has built-in blow-out panels. The M1 abrams, for instance, has a blast-door that separates the crew compartment from the ammo storage. The ammo storage, has panels that "give way" in the event of an ammo-rack failure, to prevent pressure buildup within the tank. It looks like a spectacular cookoff, but the crew and rest of the vehicle are unharmed.

 

If the ammo is stored inside the crew compartment (like the Leopard), then the pressure buildup will be equal inside the entire compartment. Given that the turret ring sometimes have relatively weak locks to hold it down (generally, the weight of the turret itself keeps it in place, but some clamps/seals are fitted to keep it snugly attached), this may break during cookoff, and make the turret come off.

 

It doesn't necessarily "fly" off, but fall off, or get displaced on top of the tank.

 

See pics in spoiler :)

Spoiler

Sherman, WWII

Sherman_turret.jpg

 

BT7, WWII

Bt7_turret.jpg

 

Churchill, WWII

churchill_turret.jpg

 

Leopard 2, Modern

leopard_turret.png

 

 

Either way, there should be some randomization to this effect. I guess it could best be done by varying the turret velocity between 0 m/s and about 5 m/s and some directional randomness. (At low velocities, the turret will just sit on top of the wreck/slightly misaligned - at higher velocities, it will visually leap off to the side, maybe even landing upside down.

 

Just a suggestion :)

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29 minutes ago, Strike_NOR said:

 

All vanilla tanks are fictional (yet, based on real life tanks) - so they can have ammo anywhere they want.

 

Secondly, what matters isn't necessarily just where the ammo is stored, but whether or not the ammo compartment has built-in blow-out panels. The M1 abrams, for instance, has a blast-door that separates the crew compartment from the ammo storage. The ammo storage, has panels that "give way" in the event of an ammo-rack failure, to prevent pressure buildup within the tank. It looks like a spectacular cookoff, but the crew and rest of the vehicle are unharmed.

 

If the ammo is stored inside the crew compartment (like the Leopard), then the pressure buildup will be equal inside the entire compartment. Given that the turret ring sometimes have relatively weak locks to hold it down (generally, the weight of the turret itself keeps it in place, but some clamps/seals are fitted to keep it snugly attached), this may break during cookoff, and make the turret come off.

 

It doesn't necessarily "fly" off, but fall off, or get displaced on top of the tank.

 

See pics in spoiler :)

  Reveal hidden contents

Sherman, WWII

Sherman_turret.jpg

 

BT7, WWII

Bt7_turret.jpg

 

Churchill, WWII

churchill_turret.jpg

 

Leopard 2, Modern

leopard_turret.png

 

 

Either way, there should be some randomization to this effect. I guess it could best be done by varying the turret velocity between 0 m/s and about 5 m/s and some directional randomness. (At low velocities, the turret will just sit on top of the wreck/slightly misaligned - at higher velocities, it will visually leap off to the side, maybe even landing upside down.

 

Just a suggestion :)

Quick thing to note: the Leopard 2 has a hull ammo rack and one in the turret bustle with blow out panels, considering the automatic fire extinguisher system a turret pop like on russian style MBTs is highly unlikely.

Not to mention most hits are to the turret and not the hull anyway, the crew also will move ammo from the hull to the turret during lows in combat.

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2 minutes ago, scavenjer said:

considering the automatic fire extinguisher system a turret pop like on russian style MBTs is highly unlikely.

 

Yet, there it is in the game. So either the devs chose to make the turret disappear (disintegrate), or it's a placeholder until it can pop off (new turret wreck model appears ingame during the explosion), or they need to put a wrecked turret model on the tank chassis wreck.

 

Fires aren't modeled in ArmA3, prior to vehicle destruction. So extinguishers serve no purpose here. As for preventing ammo cookoff, well.. it's so utterly random. If the fire is in the ammo compartment, sure an extinguisher will make a difference, but if the ammo itself has been compromised (gunpowder burning), its too late. It would be the equivalent of trying to stop an armed hand grenade from exploding by spraying it with a fire-extinguisher.

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Just now, Strike_NOR said:

 

Yet, there it is in the game. So either the devs chose to make the turret disappear (disintegrate), or it's a placeholder until it can pop off (new turret wreck model appears ingame during the explosion), or they need to put a wrecked turret model on the tank chassis wreck.

 

Fires aren't modeled in ArmA3, prior to vehicle destruction. So extinguishers serve no purpose here. As for preventing ammo cookoff, well.. it's so utterly random. If the fire is in the ammo compartment, sure an extinguisher will make a difference, but if the ammo itself has been compromised (gunpowder burning), its too late. It would be the equivalent of trying to stop an armed hand grenade from exploding by spraying it with a fire-extinguisher.

Depends, IRL the BW did some testing and found that with the fire extinguisher system an ammo cookoff in the hull of a leopard 2 is less likely to happen than if they'd put the shells in a wet ammo rack (proven to work quite well as shermans used them and they rarely had ammo cookoffs).

Still not exactly something that needs modelling in arma, if we stick with the current catastrophic destruction of vehicles, that's fine by me.

 

Though as some other people have suggested, it'd be nice if disabling a vehicle is more likely than outright destroying it (maybe destruction after several minutes due to simulated fire? (engine and fuel)).

It's just weird how shooting the strongest points on tanks (turret) leads to the most succes and damage.

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