russian armor

Tip of the Week #8 - The Pak-Howitzer and the LeIG

This week's Tip Of the Week will focus on how to properly use the Western Front Armies' support guns to maximum effectiveness.

The M1 75mm Pack Howitzer and LEIG 18 Infantry support gun are designed to trail slightly behind your main force for direct supporting fire, like the old European cannons. They are not to be used as mortars or indirect artillery if you want to maximize their effectiveness. Both of these support guns are much more accurate when firing directly at their target in their autofire range.
Good Positioning

This pack howitzer can fire at all targets around the center accurately and quickly. It is protected by the MG in the house and a rifleman screen.
Bad Positioning
These pack howitzers are not in the ideal positions.

This howitzer is too far back and wont be able to really hit anything or fire automatically.

This howitzer is lodged against a shotblocker,so it wont be able fire directly. Instead, it will fire like a really bad mortar and will fail to hit anything moving. It is also too far back.

You must adjust your strategy and playstyle to protect your guns which will allow you to use them in their intended role.
Build Orders and Strategies
United States Forces
*****once your howitzer is on the field and protected properly you are free to deviate from the ending of these builds in any way you please****

Building 2 Riflemen and an assault Engineer will give you a versatile infantry fighting force as well as a means of protecting your flanks with demo charges and light anti tank mines.

Tech a lieutenant first to access the M2HB machine gun or if you prefer or can afford, an M20 for its anti tank mines to protect your howitzer from direct assault. Without the lieutenant and his machine guns and/or M20 mines, you are extremely vulnerable to a swarmed attack.

Call your captain in once you've secured the fuel then call in our beloved howitzer.

Use your army around your howitzer. Protect it and use it to whittle the enemy off the map. With the double officer tech and Armor company, you should have the Command points to rely on M10 call-ins for Anti Tank. Call a Bulldozer Sherman in if needed as well.

Beware of

These units WILL tear your strategy and possibly the howitzer itself to pieces if you aren't careful.

The following are the veterancy bonuses for the Pack Howitzer:

Vet 1 unlocks the 'White Phosphorous Barrage' ability, the smoke rounds this ability fires will prevent vehicles from firing their weapons and will severely weaken enemy infantry by lowering their health to 1.

Vet 2 replaces the standard barrage by HEAT barrage improving damage and penetration
This improves the pack howitzer's barrage considerably,allowing it to engage even heavy tanks with its HEAT round barrage.

Vet 3 gives an additional 33% range and a faster ability cooldown by 30%. This allows it to scale back from a direct fire howitzer and enables it to be a longer range support gun.
Oberkommando West

Use volksgrenadiers, sturmpioneers, sandbags, MG34s, schu-mines and reinforced wire to defend your LEIG from direct attack. Put the Battlegroup HQ in a forward position with good sight lines, and use the LEIG to create an extended aura of influence around your battlegroup headquarters.

Beware of

These units will rip our strategy to pieces after a certain point. Luckily, the OKW has access to the battlegroup HQ, which will allow you to reinforce,recrew and continue using your LEIG into the late game even with all these artillery pieces running amok.

The following are the veterancy bonuses for the LeIG:

Vet 1 unlock more range, Kappa

Vet 2 gives 25% more speed, receives 25% less accuracy. This is important because as I said earlier, your support gun is supposed to be moving forward with your troops, not lying idle far away from the action. This veterancy bonus allows it to be more durable when its close to the action.

Vet 3 gives a faster barrage cooldown by 40% and 33% more barrage range.
When the Katyushas and B4s hit the field, you won't be able to use your LEIG as aggressively. So you can fire accurately and more often from a safe distance (around your battlegroup HQ)

Vet 4 doubles the duration and quantity of shells fired in a barrage.

Vet 5 gives 30% more penetration and 50% more damage.
You now have a mini ML-20 but this level is difficult to reach.
Using the WFA support guns properly will yield good results with their suppression and killing power. These guns with support are the pinnacle of combined arms in Company of Heroes 2. Just beware of enemy counter battery fire and be weary of large infantry assaults.

I hope this tip of the week unit guide helped you learn something or boosted your confidence in the western front armies artillery pieces.
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