USF are able to wrangle their other vehicle's crews for repairs, though, and USF having a second RE is no different to OST having a second pioneer, is it? REs are also able to double as a minor AT platform when given Zooks.
The population space required for the second RE is even less a concern for USF, as well, given their ability to decrew (All other) vehicles to temporarily increase their effective popcap.
OST needs another pio by default for any tank in the late-game, it's not specifically tied to having a Tiger or not. USF, on the other hand, needs a RE purely for Pershing. This practically adds 250MP cost to Pershing itself. When you compare it to mediums USF can field that doesn't need this extra cost, Pershing isn't a viable choice.
Although, viability of pop abuse is off-topic, I'd like to talk about it, too since you've mentinoed it.
Pop abuse is problematic in a lot of ways. Sure, you get more vehicles by doing it but every time you need to reinforce your infantry you need to decrew at least one of your tanks to do so, which effectively decreases your active combat force throughout the game and adds extra micro tax. Depending on how short the intervals between reinforcements, extra micro tax from decrew/recrews can be disastrous in late-game unless you've 200APM or something.
A vet 3 5-men RET squad should easily be enough to keep a Pershing running considering all the other tanks have their own crews.
Single RE is never enough for Pershing to work efficiently. REs, for some reason, has only 10.5 repair speed at vet3. That's 30.5 seconds of repair time for just 2 ATG shots that'll most likely penetrate Pershing's 270 armor (especially if we consider it's late-game and ATGs are vetted up). For comparison 2 vet0 pios with minesweeper upgrade have 15.2 repair speed, meaning, they can repair a Tiger that took 2 ATG shots in 21 seconds. 2 vet3 pios w/ minesweepers and 5-men can repair it in 11 seconds but that's a very rare occurrence, of course.
Pershing either needs its crew back or some form of crew repair ability (Slow but full repairs like Soviets or fast but limited repairs like OKW/UKF) for free or for a small munition cost. The need to buy second RE is a big disadvantage for Pershing as of now.
So it would appear tripwire does not do kill crit, but 80 dmg instead.
You could confirm that with sniper of any faction as they have 82 hp too.
Yes, that's the case but I'd like to know if it was intended for vet3 Grenadiers resist to tripwire flare while implementing the reduced damage modifier on them. If it wasn't intended (from a balance perspective), it should be fixed.
This is what it says in the notes of the balance patch which implemented grenadiers' reduced damage modifier:
"We think Grenadiers are in a good spot in terms of their combat performance, but with only 4 models, they get wiped too easily once heavy indirect fire and big guns start roaming the battlefield. We’d like to trial a change that replaces their veterancy 3 Received Accuracy with a Damage Reduction modifier. This should help Grenadiers survive explosions damage in the late game, without really having an impact on their durability versus small arms fire."
Since it doesn't say anything about mines, I assume it wasn't intended result of this change.
Is this intended or simply overlooked when implementing the received damage modifier on Grenadiers before, I don't know. If it was intended, you can ignore this but I think it wasn't.
Grenadiers at veterancy 3, survive from a tripwire flare which is supposed to kill a model from the squad.
It's just opinion of an average player but I don't think making the map east vs west is the best idea. It feels very unnatural. Especially on middle, hedges block a lot of the player's sight if you look from the new camera angle.
The map wasn't designed for that camera angle in the first place now, is it? Reverting the camera angle would be great IMO.
Yes, it's vanished from the automatch and people don't build it outside the meme builds. Unit's timing is simply not worth it when it's hard-countered by a unit that comes 30secs later and only cost 10F more. Kind of like AEC-222 match-up but in that case, opponent needs to invest 45F more instead of only 10F more and AEC is, unlike 222, quite ineffective against infantry.
As you noted, armor skirts being overpriced is also a problem on a muni-intensive faction like USF.
Your suggestions are already pretty good but I'd like to add 1 more to consider:
-Give its .50cal AP rounds so that it isn't as hard-countered by 222 as it is now. Back then, zooks somehow discouraged 222 dives but right now, 222 has basically no reason to not dive right onto M20 and kill it in seconds. Even if you successfully snare it, you don't have the crew, unlike before, to follow-up with the kill.
However, this can be quite oppressive against OST when someone spams M20, so it's not as safe as your suggestions.
I agree that either its timing or armored skirts cost should be buffed (You can even make it stock tbh, given that how even with skirts, 222 has no problem penetrating it).
Here's the replay of the latest match I've played against a decent player. It's not as good as high-level matches but it should help somehow, I hope. Again, thanks for your effort. The map is good now IMO. If I were to change something though, I'd slide the truck on the mid a little bit to the top side.
OKW's medium timing generally leads to your opponent getting a medium sooner than you. As the consequence, you always need a PIV to keep up with it. The problem is, however, that even after you get a PIV, investing on a Hetzer doesn't seem viable because of its relatively high cost for a strictly AI-only vehicle. I suggest lowering the cost of the Hetzer to make it viable. Maybe then it'd be justified to invest into an AI-only vehicle in some cases. Because currently, there's basically no reason to get a Hetzer over PIV when PIV does both AI and AT duty very well.