Who uses Fear Propaganda Artillery?

4 years ago
PanzerFutzPanzerFutz Melbourne, OzPosts: 346

I would be very interested to hear from other players regarding the use of Fear Propaganda Artillery (or as I like to call it: Free Toilet Paper Artillery). I personally think that artillery which neither kills nor destroys is pretty useless. I would like to see it disappear and be replaced with something more useful but, other players may feel differently.

I would appreciate any feedback on this issue, including thoughts on what might replace it. Cheers.


  • #2
    4 years ago
    gydh56gydh56 Posts: 71

    This ability is totally useless. Actual artillery costs the same and actually kills the enemy.

  • #3
    4 years ago
    YappirYappir Posts: 87

    What the hell guys, this ability is great. If somebody blobs, it is great, if somebody is very defeensive it is great. On he big maps you can force enemy army to run more then fight. It can even force Pak 40 to run away. It costs only 80 what is cheap to spam, (compere to IŁ-2) specialy that soviets usualy accumulate a lot of ammo.

  • #4
    4 years ago
    gydh56gydh56 Posts: 71

    If only there was a way to kill a blob instead of forcing it to retreat... like with artillery or strafing runs. Even mines or hidden demo charges will do more to blobs.

  • #5
    4 years ago
    Rommel654Rommel654 Fort Eustis, VAPosts: 937 mod

    I believe it can be one of the most powerful enablers in the game. Like all abilities, it is situational for units and map.

    On large maps with Wehr the retreating of key units takes a long time, particularly if you have something waiting for them when they get there.

    It divides an enemy who may have an overwhelming defense or attack. Making a key MG or AT gun retreat can be the key to unrolling his line. Prop war also helps for those shreks that have broke through and are sure to get your Katy's or wounded tanks.

    It is best, like most abilities, used in conjunction with a planned attack. It is like smoke but exponentially easier and more effective to use. There is no warning for this.

    If only you use it for blobs then you may be missing the most useful applications. But even with just blobs it is effective if you use it as part of the plan to defeat the blob tactic. By itself it may only buy you some time.

    Yes, it is not the killer, but neither are smoke, recon, radar, radio intercept, mark target or a host of other abilities by themselves. But are these abilities value added....absolutely in the right conditions and combinations.

  • #6
    4 years ago
    PanzerFutzPanzerFutz Melbourne, OzPosts: 346

    @Rommel654 Thanks for your reply to my original question. It seems to be a divisive issue but the more people who answer in the affirmative, the more I learn about how to use this ability.

    I have a question (because I don't use Free Toilet Paper Artillery enough to know the answer myself).

    If the enemy is attacking in force, can I select which unit I want to retreat or does the AI choose? Or do all units under the barrage retreat?

    If every unit under the barrage retreats, then it's not as bad as it seems but, my limited experience with it suggests this isn't the case.

    If I could choose which unit would retreat, from within a group of units, then I still might think it was useful. Again, my limited experience suggests this isn't the case.

    My limited experience suggests that the AI chooses which unit or units to retreat and it usually chooses the ones which are least critical to the battle.

    Thus, if the only time this "artillery" "works" is when used on single units, then yes, I can find some tactical applications for it but I still don't like it. I don't play "capture the flag", only annihilation, because wars are usually won by killing more of the enemy's troops than he kills of yours. Free Toilet Paper Artillery contributes very little toward this end.

    However, thanks to your lesson in the tactical applications of this ability, I will play a few games with my NKVD commander to test out your suggestions. Cheers.

  • #7
    4 years ago
    @PanzerFutz Fear Propaganda does a myriad of suppressive damage to all enemy units in the affected area and does not come with a flare. It is the only ability that can force retreat MG teams when they have already set up and can also retreat AT Guns (If they haven't set up).

    All of this is determined by RNG with % values for each artillery shell event.
    Each shell has a chance to do one one of the following:
    - Nothing happens (25%)
    - Unit Suppressed and takes 100% received accuracy (35%)
    - Unit Pinned/Suppressed (30%)
    - Unit Retreats (10%)
  • #8
    4 years ago
    PanzerFutzPanzerFutz Melbourne, OzPosts: 346
    edited July 2018

    @MSAF_Unbekannt_15 Thanks for the breakdown of probabilities. It's made it easier to identify where the problem lies.

    I have now play tested the Free Toilet Paper Artillery against the AI and it confirms all my suspicions about it. Against a single unit, it has a low probability of inducing a retreat. Against multiple units, the probability of inducing one unit to retreat increases but, it is always the least effective unit which retreats. I tried 3 times to make the same MG retreat but didn't succeed (based on the odds you provided, I'd have to fire 10 times on average to make it retreat once). I then used 2 Katyushas to barrage the unit, killing it very quickly while leaving the MG behind for future scavenging. I know which method I prefer.

    Here is what I would need to see before I would re-consider my proposal to remove this craptastic "artillery" from the game completely.

    Unsuppressed unit:

    • Nothing happens (25%)
    • Unit Suppressed and takes 100% received accuracy (35%)
    • Unit Pinned (30%)
    • Unit Retreats (10%)

    Suppressed unit:

    • Unit Suppressed and takes 100% received accuracy (20%)
    • Unit Pinned (50%)
    • Unit Retreats (30%)

    Pinned unit

    • Unit Pinned(50%)
    • Unit Retreats (50%)

    I would also add a health modifier that increases the chance of retreat for every man lost from the unit. This would be done by shifting the probabilities away from the least effective outcomes, like this:

    Four+ men in unsuppressed unit - same as above

    3 men in unsuppressed unit

    • Nothing happens (15%)
    • Unit Suppressed and takes 100% received accuracy (35%)
    • Unit Pinned (30%)
    • Unit Retreats (20%)

    2 men in unsuppressed unit

    • Nothing happens (5%)
    • Unit Suppressed and takes 100% received accuracy (25%)
    • Unit Pinned (40%)
    • Unit Retreats (30%)

    1 man in unsuppressed unit

    • Unit Suppressed and takes 100% received accuracy (20%)
    • Unit Pinned (40%)
    • Unit Retreats (40%)

    For a pinned unit with only one man in it (snipers excluded), I would want to see a 90% retreat probability. If the developers modified the Free Toilet Paper Artillery in such a manner, then maybe, MAYBE I'd consider it to be worth more than something with which to wipe my arse. Cheers.

  • #9
    4 years ago
    Rommel654Rommel654 Fort Eustis, VAPosts: 937 mod

    NKVD is one of the more challenging Soviet Commander's to work with. I think it is because 4 of the 5 abilities require munitions. Some of the abilities can be complementary, some I don't know about their synergy.

    The OKW Commander retreat ability for 60 munitions is as close to the old prop war I can think of. It immediately retreats one squad.

    For me and pacing my muni usage, 2 commander abilities that use muni's is ideal for consistent use. At 3 I have to start picking which one I want when, at 4 it is totally inefficient for me because I can't use some of the abilities at all. I just can't keep the muni income without something like supply drop to assist.

    I like your ideas and think they are grounded in good reasoning.

    I usually only use prop war when I can put direct fire on the frozen squads. Something about not being able to control your units under fire cause some to immediately retreat them.

    The Soviet prop war with Terror or the Infantry support (?) work better I think than NKVD. The prop war stops them so the incendiary barrage is more effective. He can't just move away from the red flares. His only option is to hit the retreat button.

    My hat is off to you if you can make NKVD work well consistently. I've not broken that code.

  • #10
    4 years ago
    PanzerFutzPanzerFutz Melbourne, OzPosts: 346

    @Rommel654 That's the problem - I can't make the NKVD commander work and I don't have the other 2 which have Prop Arty. Using it to pin units which I could then destroy with other forms of attack makes a lot of sense to me. On its own, it's not much chop.

    As for synergies, it would be Recon Flight + IL2 Attacks or Prop Arty + IL2 Attacks (+ Katyushas & mortars depending on location). I generally only use the Recon Flight for areas beyond the reach of mortar or sniper flares so, I don't spend a lot of munitions on it. I don't use Rapid Conscription (just as I don't use Osttruppen Reserves for the Wehrmacht) because, most of the time I'd rather spend manpower than munitions.

    So, due to the limited applications of Recon Flight and Prop Arty, with the NKVD commander I spend most of my munitions on the IL2 Attacks.

    Thanks for the insight into the OKW version. It doesn't make much sense to call the ability Force Retreat if it doesn't actually force an enemy unit to retreat. If Free Toilet Paper Artillery had a higher probability of forcing retreats, I wouldn't have such a problem with it.

  • #11
    4 years ago
    From my experience, mostly from the receiving end, this is one of the most frustating abilities in the game, as it has a massive aoe and can completely shut down an advance or cripple a defense. Honestly, I wonder why more people don't use it.
  • #12
    4 years ago
    SkysTheLimitSkysTheLi… Posts: 2,271
    I'm a little late to the party, but this is one of my favorite abilities in the game. It actually provides vision over it's entire area of effect too, so if you call it on some units that are right on the edge of your sight range, you get a little recon too.

    Saying it's useless because you might as well have real artillery is a strange take. It arrives faster than artillery, which can often be a waste if your openent reacts quickly enough. It also has no flares so your oponnent's ability to react is almost impossible as long as you place the ability right.
  • #13
    4 years ago
    PanzerFutzPanzerFutz Melbourne, OzPosts: 346

    @SkysTheLimit When I started this thread 3 months ago, I was struggling to make use of my NKVD commander because, I didn't understand how to use Prop Arty. Thanks to the insight provided by Rommel654 and MSAF_Unbekannt_15, I have now learned how to use it and I agree that it is more valuable than it first appears.

    It's not that good on its own, although there are circumstances where it can be used that way, but when it's combined with other units and/or strikes it is a very powerful force enabler. It forces your opponent to choose between retreating or losing a large chunk of the infantry they have in the vicinity. It can be used whether the infantry is attacking or defending and, as you say, it comes in without warning.

    I like to actually destroy enemy units, rather than simply retreat them but, if I can't do that, it is a more effective way to force units to retreat than decoy flares (for example) and it's a lot cheaper than real artillery when used for that purpose. I wasn't aware of the spotting factor but, I'll keep it in mind for future use.

    Of course, with the changes to the NKVD commander that tie Prop Arty to the Commissar squad, the ways in which it can be used have been somewhat reduced when using this commander. I guess I'll just have to acquire the Terror or Anti-Infantry commander to explore the full range of circumstances under which it can be employed.

  • #14
    4 years ago
    SkysTheLimitSkysTheLi… Posts: 2,271
    The other thing I would say about comparing it to real artillery is that the soviets don't really have any as far as off-maps go. The have propaganda and the flame barrage an that's it, the rest is in the sky.

    I find the flame barrage and propaganda to be somewhat similar, they're more about area denial than actual destruction.
  • #15
    4 years ago
    pablonanopablonano YesterdayPosts: 2,549

    The only thing that is better than flame barrage is that fear propaganda gives LoS while its active and price, for the rest a not messed up flame-barrage will do all the work, causing loses and damaging structures such as bunkers, and cant be countered by just getting into buildings.

  • #16
    2 years ago

    quite an useful ability really. can really dissrupt enemy infantry when the attack or if you attack.

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