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Old 2009-07-14, 09:24   Link #2001
Keroko
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Agreed. Yet another reason why I like the gritty cast of the novels better than the anime one.

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Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
Apparently, the writers really do think of just about everything...
This explanation reminds me of a conversation between the devs of The Force Unleashed, which had a droid able to use the Force. One of the devs asked how they were going to explain that, and the whole team scratched their heads until one said.

"uhm... tractor beams?"

After that, they went 'okay, we have our explanation. Next!'

Sometimes, the simplest solutions are the best.
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Old 2009-07-15, 04:31   Link #2002
Tk3997
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Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
I wish the series would explore more on the emotional effects the war has on the Witches. Not that I want an emo series, but that's a fairly big part of war, and it hardly gets mentioned in the series at all. You can't really expect to throw some 14-year-old girls into a fight and not see some effect on their well-being... especially since people and Witches do get killed and/or crippled. The second doujinshi had a couple of scenes with Charlotte struggling with her "duty", but it just kinda got glossed over. The second novelette also has an adult ex-witch, who lives as a civilian before signing up for duty again, and she's more cynical and realistic about some aspects of the war (at times), compared to her rookie wingman and only subordinate.

And of course, there's Beurling.

Anyway, yeah, if the series insists on making them all young girls (and I would be extremely happy if it hadn't <_<; ), I wish they'd actually make them little girls in more than just looks. Cause otherwise, there isn't a one of them that acts like a girl thrown into a war... especially a war they're supposedly losing, or at the very least not winning.
Depends I know allot of guys who have said that during the war it didn’t really effect them that much at the time. Many of them where so busy doing there job and staying alive that they often didn’t really think about such things much. It was afterwards when they had time to think and look back it really started affecting them more.

There are other factors to consider as well for one the enemy isn’t human and is clearly genocidal. This will remove one of the major sources of discomfort involved in war: killing other people and why you’re fighting. The war depicted here is not some questionable political affair it’s a war of survival against an inhuman enemy that by all appearances is bent on annihilating the human race. That will get rid of allot of ambiguity real quick.

It would have an effect, but it would likely be less pronouced then due to the circumstacnes I think the novels have the mix about right as well.
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Old 2009-07-15, 08:08   Link #2003
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The tea parties and underwear antics were a bit much, imho.

Anyway, previews for Tiger in Desert part 2 got posted.
http://nogami.firstspear.com/?eid=1089100
Nothing too interest except maybe the squad of Shermans, unless you're a fan of Marseille('s rear). Looks like no official English translation again.
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Old 2009-07-15, 09:13   Link #2004
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Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
The tea parties and underwear antics were a bit much, imho.
The tea parties I don’t mind historically pilots did much the same thing except they would probably be chugging beers with each other instead. I can certainly see why that aspect was changed.


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Anyway, previews for Tiger in Desert part 2 got posted.
http://nogami.firstspear.com/?eid=1089100
Nothing too interest except maybe the squad of Shermans, unless you're a fan of Marseille('s rear). Looks like no official English translation again.
*whistles innocently*

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Originally Posted by Keroko View Post
Humm, while I agree that you make a good point with the first and third part, I feel I should remind you that witches magically enhance their bullets. A gun on an armored vehicle would not necessarily have the same firepower as when put in the hands of a witch.
Frankly the idea that magic was some cure all that off set any difference in firepower for me has gone out the window with the novels and Doujin.

The effects seen from these magically enhanced bullets are not that impressive certainly the weapons we see used by the majority of land witches we seen are not even near the firepower of an 88mm firing AP rounds. This is to be expected though none of the most common witch weapons seen appear to be larger then perhaps 40mm in size and most have rather short barrels. They would have poor ballistics perhaps equivalent to a high velocity grenade launcher. As such magic is probably the only thing that makes them vaguely comparable to larger weapons, but there is little evidence it makes them more effective though.

For instance observe this:
http://www.virtualpilots.fi/en/feature/photoreports/hallinportti2002/h_BK_mg151.jpg

That’s a 20mm weapon off an Me-109 it’s ballistics were decent, but it would still have been nearly useless for dealing with anything heavier then a half-track. Now compare that weapons sheer size to the small pop guns used by witches. You’d need magic merely to give the weapon a chance against a well armored target to start with. The lighter machine guns used by most air witches would probably be almost useless against anything worth being called armored. (Otherwise why would ground based witches encumber themselves with larger bore weapons and smaller ammo supplies?) Magic appears merely to allow a weapon to punch slightly above its weight class. It does not appear to make the basic properties of the weapon itself irrelevant (otherwise there is no reason to up-gun) nor allow it to defeat conventional defenses regardless of its caliber. (in other words adding more armor is a viable defensive measure)

Further more the witches load bearing potential is limited IIRC it was mentioned in the novel that even something like a 100 kg bomb with nothing else was considered a heavy load that greatly slowed them to carry. That level of load bearing potential would limit them to a weapon of 20 to 30mm at most and probably a short barreled one with low muzzle velocity. Magic would allow such a weapon to hit harder then would be expected, but normal vehicles could still easily mount larger weapons, more of them, and a more liberal ammo supply likely offsetting the difference.

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Considering airborne witches can already withstand multiple impacts that shred tanks to pieces,
... So a .50 cal can "Shred a tank to pieces" now? Tomoko was uncomfortable about HMG bullets coming close to her and the machine guns used by the early Neuroi are also a threat. Ergo airborne witches are vulnerable to massed machine gun fire, massed machine gun fire is not something that's all that hard to produce from a mechanized formation like those used by the Neuroi.

You could bring up the beams and shit from the anime I suppose, but I could counter the beams are of an unknown composition that do not appear to work on direct energy transfer in many cases. This means they have nothing to do with resisting machine gun bullets, which we have examples showing are a threat to witches.

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to think what tank witches could do to a regular tank battalion would be making 'nightmare' a light word. Not to mention urban fights. A soldier with the firepower of a tank, many times it's armor, and the size of a little girl.
Don't get carried away they're a threat, but hardly unstoppable. First off there firepower is only fair as the small guns they use would make small holes and penetration =/= destruction. The guns ablity to easily defeat heavily armored vehicles frontally could also rightly be questioned in some cases. Range would also likely be limited almost certain ignoring just the ballistics of the weapons humans have trouble aiming unguided shots on moving targets past a few hundred yards.

Period armored vehicles made heavy use of magnifying optics and range finders and STILL missed most shots beyond a few hundred meters if the target was mobile. Witches lack any such aids we've seen and could fare even worse though we can perhaps suppose they can use magic to slightly guide shots so may have comparable accuracy, but it's unlikely to be noticeably better. Either way firepower wise they're not that much more of a threat then a period Anti-tank teams.

Many times its armor is highly questionable as well for one thing this "Armor" is in the form of a shield that from what we've seen can be worn down by sustained attack. Armor has the distinct advantage of being "always on" the armor either deflects the shell or it doesn't, but if it deflects it the damage is normally minimal. Below a certain threshold the armor is effectively invulnerable as no amount of small arms would penetrate a well made tank, but for a witch that must actively maintain a defense its unclear if this would be the case.

Another edge for true armor is that it requires no active input to maintain a tired or worn out witch might well field an increasingly weak shield over time, but a tanks armor never “gets tired” nor will it get weaker if the crew is tired or hasn’t eaten for a while because the supply convoys can’t keep up with the advance. The absolute strength of the shield is in question too if we assume it makes one roughly similar to a tank, as shields make air witches roughly as durable as a fighter, then while it might protect well from small arms fire it’s ability to resist large strikes might be no better then a tank. In other words one big wallop could breech it and that’s the end of her. Furthermore we have at least one example of a tank Striker so large it would be no harder to hit by and large then a normal tank.

Anyway discussing the more common (for now) leg type strikers well admittedly hitting a man sized target with AP would be a challenge, but then again would that be needed? An HE round out of a good sized tank gun can knock down a small house and setting it off near a witch would surely hurl her around rather violently. (Assuming the shield was able to protect her from the overpressure) As noted above the shield can also quite possibly be “worn down” so while peppering the area of an armored vehicle with HE shells is useless peppering a witch with them might not be so at all.

You’d be rocking the hell out of her in any case making accurate return fire almost impossible and forcing her shield to soak huge pressure waves and flying steel shrapnel. At the very least I expect this would encourage her to get the hell of a building and stop shooting at you if you started blowing chunks out of it lest she be buried alive. Plus if they’re pumping magic power into a shield to stay alive they probably aren’t pumping into shells to try and kill you, so it quite likely would even further shut down there offense via that method. Small arms fire might well have the same effect forcing her to defend herself rather then attack and rockets and grenades could also be added to the barrage of HE as well.

Now you might say this would seem to require the attacker rather badly outnumber the witch to which I’d reply that such a situation is nearly a given. If we assume the Witch has support from normal forces she’s more dangerous, but then again if the attacker had his own witches he could use them to counter as well. Basically Witches would be useful, but could not win battles alone against massed conventional forces willing to take losses to kill them IMO.

Just like for all there fighting prowess a small group of knights in the middle ages could not be expected to route a large group of weaker, but far more numerous peasant levies reliably. History shows it again and again. While a small group of elite or well equipped troops can inflict damage out of proportion to their numbers they can’t win wars or battles alone.

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I don't even need any knowledge of urban fights to see the massive advantage of this. Sure, you lose your mobile cover, but in return you get a tank that can get through small alleys, cross light bridges and even get into buildings.
She's not a tank in a number of key ways though.

First off as noted her firepower compared to a tank is debatable. We've never seen them firing big HE shells and the small caliber cannons they've used are not known of there stunning blast effect. Even if magic made it somewhat more powerful it would likely be no more potent then a round from a bazooka or recoilless rifle. Useful, but nothing that changes the rules of the game.Her ammo supply is also a question a decent tank of that period could have nearly or up to a hundred main gun rounds squirreled away, plus thousands and thousands of rounds for probably at least two and up to the three or four machine guns. This a load a Witch is unlikely to match simply for lack of any wear to stick it all as much as due to it's weight. So her combat endurance would likely be lower then a tank as well.

Tanks are useful for more then simply mobile cover when fighting in urban terrain. A tank can crush barbed wire or obstacles, bash down walls to open new approach routes, push aside roadblocks or debris to make advancing easier and so on. A tank is after all about 30 tops of steel on tracks, which might also well describe a bulldozer. A witches only option for such tasks would be either wasting shells blowing holes (something infantry with a stachel charge could do just as well) or possibly trying to use her enhanced strength to break through or clear things. Even if that worked would almost certainly take longer and she probably couldn't protect herself while working.

Witches can't do all the stuff a tank can do, and tanks can't do all the stuff a witch can do. Using both is clearly the best option, but if you could only have one take the tanks. You can always keep building more tanks, he almost certainly can't getting more witches...


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Perhaps more maneuverable isn't the right word... what I mean to say is that a witch can fire in full 360 degrees around herself, even going as far as to twist around and fire behind her, as Yohika demonstrates in her first flight.
It's not really 360; at least not at any given time.

It's true that they could in a pinch fire behind them, but this is of debatable use. You now can't see where you're going as you'd have to look down over your stomache to do it. (that's the only way even marginal accuray is possible, you sure as hell can't shot over your shoulder.) Even so it's not a very good firing postion, last I checked the military didn't normally teach a "lying on back like you're lounging on a couch firing postion." Also watch out for spraying your own feet with bullets and good luck making any serious manuvers now that you're looking backwards and not where you're going.

Worse all that's happened is you're now trading fire with them instead of dodging it. Worse still you're probably flying in a fairly perdicatble fashion focusing on just staying level and aimming making you and even easier target. Then factor in that while you're flipping over and finding the target they're probably already shooting and we see this is not a fight you're likely to win.

This is probably why witches still consider getting behind someone a signifcant advantage.

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Where a normal fighter would have overshot its target and would have needed to make another pass, Yoshika could turn around in mid-air and fire still.
As noted above the use of this is debatable and the countermeasure is trivial.

If she's about to overshot you then either climb or dive slightly, depending on wether she came from above or below you. Even a slight nudge in either direct should mean that as she overshoots you end up in her blind spot. If she tries to flip over and keep firing then just turn away and gain distance, the time she wastes turning over an re-aiming should carry you far enough to be more or less outside effective machine gun range. Once out of range simply turn back in and re-engage now in a more or less even postion. If as she overshoots she herself breaks hard or keeps going then normal manuvers apply.

Either way the overshoot is still a mistake and still helps you.

If you're behind her and she tries this as a defense then what you do is different, but you still have the edge.

Working the throttle and maneuvering not overshot is basic first day stuff you learn in a dogfight. All one needs to do if it looks like this is going to occur is turn away, probably into a high Yo-yo of some sort this. You keep your speed up and create distance while remaining behind her. If she flips back over and continues forward then drop back in on her.

If she keeps wallowing around like that acting like a turtle she's probably not doing much but flying in a straight line level. (For a comparison I'd like to see how well you could fly an airplane facing backward trying to aim a gun behind you.) In that case simply bank away and open distance as before, but continue climbing to get above her and then rain shots down. With gravity working for you and against her your bullets will have a much greater range. Now she either must stop flying around like that and maneuver or die, and you're now above her with energy to burn so you can drop on her easily.

Another option if you're feeling bolder is acutally get in closer and then bob up and down behind her while friring. If she want's to keep shooting at you she'll have to roll constantly as you move in and our of her blind spot. You meanwhile can keep an easy beat on her the entire time gently diving and climbing as she gets into a postion to fire back. You'd likely take a few hits with this tactic, but she'd been taking many, many more and almost certainly go down first.


The basic core problem with this maneuver is that the only position that would allow semi accurate fire to the rear while still moving forward (gun rested on the stomach and head up and looking back) is also a position that's going to be almost impossible to maneuver in effectively. You aren't looking ahead and to adjust your aim requires adjusting your entire posture and almost certainly thus making unwanted changes in heading and attitude. Further the position is unnatural and uncomfortable and the accuracy of fire as such would be questionable compared to aiming straight ahead with the gun well placed to the shoulder.



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The same thing can be applied in a dogfight. Where a normal fighter would have to go through all sorts of twists and loops to get a target in sight, a witch can just adjust her aim and fire, even at targets right behind her.
As I've pointed out above this is not at all the case the area behind her would sitll be a major deadzone. She has only one possible postion from which semi-accurate fire to the rear is possible. Her arc of fire out front is indeed wider, her overall firepower is also much weaker. A normal fighter of that time would carry either a large number of heavy machine guns or a mix of machine guns and cannons sometimes up to four 20mm cannons often with over a hundred rounds. (A witch I think was cited as carrying like seven shots in a 20mm autocannon).

Also don't short change a WWII fighters ablity to piont it's nose. With good use of the rudder and other flight controls a fighter can pivot and slide a considerable degree of it's line of travel. This is combined with the fact that as noted above it has much greater throw weight in guns. It would need only a fraction of the time a witch would to inflict drasticlly more damage, accuracy is also less important as he can pump far more shells into the air far faster and has more to burn.

I'm not sure which would maneuver better and I know you’re going to say “well the witch duh she’s much smaller!”, but aerodynamics does not work that way. A late model P-38 with boosted ailerons for instance at 13,000 pounds empty with a wingspan 50% larger was known to turn inside a 7,700 pound Fw-190 rather easily. In fact with combat flaps dropped at airspeeds of about 200 mph or higher it could hold a turn with a 4,000 pound Zero for a few seconds until the drag of the flaps slowed it down and then the Zero could out corner it.

An airplane’s flight controls are basically like a boats rudder they work by using air pushing on them to force the plane around. A plane is much bigger then a witch true, but at the same time it has much larger areas to stick into the wing and generate force to move it around. The human body was never designed for maneuverability at high airspeeds or hell any airspeeds at all. The dinky little wings on most Strikers seem totally inadequate to help much either and many appear fixed without moving ailerons anyway, many models appear to lack any form of rudder.


Given this I have to question just how well a witch can maneuver at high airspeed compared to a normal aircraft. At very low speeds I'd give her an edge, but at higher speeds I'm not so sure she might still be a bit better due to the sheer difference in weight, but I think the margin might be allot smaller then many people think.


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Problem, during the last episode they weren't exactly at very low altitude when holding staring contests, putting on strikers or planning the attack.
Yeah well that was to me the least of the issues with the last few eps which honestly I'd rather have never happened... Even so hovering around in a dogfight would be a pretty bad idea in any case (though not quite as dumb as doing it close to the ground with guys shootinag at you) and it's canon that it's hard to do (supposedly) so there you go.
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Old 2009-07-15, 17:22   Link #2005
Keroko
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Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
The tea parties and underwear antics were a bit much, imho.

Anyway, previews for Tiger in Desert part 2 got posted.
http://nogami.firstspear.com/?eid=1089100
Nothing too interest except maybe the squad of Shermans, unless you're a fan of Marseille('s rear). Looks like no official English translation again.
Well, I'm certainly not complaining about the view, that's for sure. Here's to hoping the tank witches get a bit of action of their own as well.

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Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
Frankly the idea that magic was some cure all that off set any difference in firepower for me has gone out the window with the novels and Doujin.
You mean aside from swords and infantry rifles tearing through Neuroi while battleship guns have no visible effect?

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Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
... So a .50 cal can "Shred a tank to pieces" now? Tomoko was uncomfortable about HMG bullets coming close to her and the machine guns used by the early Neuroi are also a threat. Ergo airborne witches are vulnerable to massed machine gun fire, massed machine gun fire is not something that's all that hard to produce from a mechanized formation like those used by the Neuroi.

You could bring up the beams and shit from the anime I suppose, but I could counter the beams are of an unknown composition that do not appear to work on direct energy transfer in many cases. This means they have nothing to do with resisting machine gun bullets, which we have examples showing are a threat to witches.
You're right, this is mostly based on the anime, which has Neuroi tearing through entire battleships while the Witches can stop entire bombardements of their beams. I retract my statement in light of this.

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Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
Don't get carried away they're a threat, but hardly unstoppable.
Never said they were, just that they would be a terrible pain in the ass to fight against.

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Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
Range would also likely be limited almost certain ignoring just the ballistics of the weapons humans have trouble aiming unguided shots on moving targets past a few hundred yards.
This does not seem to affect Lynette though, which supports that magic does have a way of enhancing this. Though as she notes, flying and aiming at the same time is hard. Tank witches, however, don't have to worry about keeping in the air, and therefore can expend more magic to increasing their accuracy and range.

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Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
Basically Witches would be useful, but could not win battles alone against massed conventional forces willing to take losses to kill them IMO.
To prevent misunderstandings, I fully agree with this. I do not expect Witches to singlehandedly lay waste to armies, I merely said they were a great tactical boon in urban scenarios, and have several advantages conventional tanks lack. Some of these boons may or may not be as great as I made them out to be, but they are boons nonetheless. Of course, the reverse is also the case.

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Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
It's true that they could in a pinch fire behind them, but this is of debatable use. You now can't see where you're going as you'd have to look down over your stomache to do it. (that's the only way even marginal accuray is possible, you sure as hell can't shot over your shoulder.) Even so it's not a very good firing postion, last I checked the military didn't normally teach a "lying on back like you're lounging on a couch firing postion." Also watch out for spraying your own feet with bullets and good luck making any serious manuvers now that you're looking backwards and not where you're going.

Worse all that's happened is you're now trading fire with them instead of dodging it. Worse still you're probably flying in a fairly perdicatble fashion focusing on just staying level and aimming making you and even easier target. Then factor in that while you're flipping over and finding the target they're probably already shooting and we see this is not a fight you're likely to win.

This is probably why witches still consider getting behind someone a signifcant advantage.
Point, though amusingly none of the witches seem to suffer problems in accuracy when pulling these stunts.

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As noted above the use of this is debatable and the countermeasure is trivial.
This was more in reference to an attack run on a slow or ground based target, not a dogfight. I should have been more clear there, sorry.

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Yeah well that was to me the least of the issues with the last few eps which honestly I'd rather have never happened... Even so hovering around in a dogfight would be a pretty bad idea in any case (though not quite as dumb as doing it close to the ground with guys shootinag at you) and it's canon that it's hard to do (supposedly) so there you go.
Well, no, taking off from the ground without aid is hard to do. I don't recall any mention being made of hovering being hard.

On an unrelated note, did you know your posts are hell to sift through when replying? All those font and color tags drive me crazy.
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Old 2009-07-15, 20:25   Link #2006
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On an unrelated note, did you know your posts are hell to sift through when replying? All those font and color tags drive me crazy.
Huh? All it shows when I'm reading it in my browser just above your post is plain text in the same font as the rest of the board and all black without any tags whatsoever?
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Old 2009-07-15, 20:37   Link #2007
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Huh? All it shows when I'm reading it in my browser just above your post is plain text in the same font as the rest of the board and all black without any tags whatsoever?
I see it the same way...plain black text, all black.
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Old 2009-07-16, 13:04   Link #2008
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Well, I'm certainly not complaining about the view, that's for sure. Here's to hoping the tank witches get a bit of action of their own as well.
I just want more of that area in general since I think it has just the right mix of witches being powerful, but not unstoppable superheroes that can fight off the entire enemy horde without any help at all.

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You mean aside from swords and infantry rifles tearing through Neuroi while battleship guns have no visible effect?
And rifles of the same type have no effect on something a tenth the size and two years older which a normal heavy AT gun later blows to bits (goes in one side and out the other) or a 7mm machine gun being outright called 'weak' by it's user 4+ years before the anime. See we can both play this game by picking the source and frankly I have a hard time figuring out how the hell they plan to fit these wildly different takes together.

I happen to find the lower end stuff much more interesting then the yawn inducing invulnerable monster of the weak nonsense though. I really didn't find the fights at all interesting in the anime no tactics, no skill, no strategy just generic action crap devoid of unique flavor. It annoys me even more since I'm a flightsim junkie and I know that it would be trivially easy to produce exciting fights using period tactics and aircraft. I can hop online with a bunch of random people and still manage to produce more interesting battles by pure happenstance.

Really what we ended up getting in the anime was about as much like WWII air combat as Star Wars is. Actually on second thought Star Wars had sequences based on WWII gun camera footage, so it was actually closer to WWII. I like the characters in the anime, but I think they managed to totally waste a very intresting setting and ruin the fight scenes with the stupid monster of the week crap.

I know in my own crack crossover verse the monster of the week shit never happens. The Neuroi field improved designs, but they're mass produced models used in numbers not one off flying didlos. I sadly hold out little hope season two will be much different and fear it's likely to contaminate the rest of the franchise given time.

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This does not seem to affect Lynette though, which supports that magic does have a way of enhancing this. Though as she notes, flying and aiming at the same time is hard. Tank witches, however, don't have to worry about keeping in the air, and therefore can expend more magic to increasing their accuracy and range.
Cept they're using that saved up magic to put up a stronger shield too. They clearly have more magic to burn on firepower, but they're using allot more of it on defense as well. Also how much they can really improve accuracy seems open to speculation. Lynette is pretty clearly supposed to be exceptional in that area though so it's likely most are noticably inferior to her.

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To prevent misunderstandings, I fully agree with this. I do not expect Witches to singlehandedly lay waste to armies, I merely said they were a great tactical boon in urban scenarios, and have several advantages conventional tanks lack. Some of these boons may or may not be as great as I made them out to be, but they are boons nonetheless. Of course, the reverse is also the case.
It would appear we are indeed on the same wavelength then.

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Point, though amusingly none of the witches seem to suffer problems in accuracy when pulling these stunts.
In the anime they mostly do so against targets the size of jumbo jets flying straight and level. I'd certainly HOPE they could hit them with a machine gun even while maneuvering! Against smaller enemies they don’t seem nearly as accurate and we see that training emphasizes getting behind an enemy before attempting to shot them.

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This was more in reference to an attack run on a slow or ground based target, not a dogfight. I should have been more clear there, sorry.
Still suicide.

Rapid fire AAA in WWII was a deadly hazard to low flying fighters. Indeed more US fighters fell to flak and machine gun bullets while performing close air support and interdiction operations then ever went down to German fighters. The best defense was always to be in the killzone as little as possible dive hard, shot fast, and get the hell out a dodge. Whallowing around at low speed was a fine way to end up full of holes and very, very dead.

Given the threat of air attack it seems rather absurd to assume that the Triple A covering Neuroi advances isn't of more or less equal hazard. This ignores that going down low and wallowing about in a slow speed hover would make you meat on the table for anyone above you. This again is why I keep shooting down the idea that airborne witches have any business being very slow and near the ground, ever.

Remember the Fighter Pilot's Mantra:
Speed Is Life.


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Well, no, taking off from the ground without aid is hard to do. I don't recall any mention being made of hovering being hard.
That’s a ridiculous argument actually hovering higher would get harder as the amount of lift being produced would drop as would engine power. If hovering near the ground is hard hovering higher in the air would be harder still.
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Old 2009-07-16, 14:05   Link #2009
Keroko
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Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
Huh? All it shows when I'm reading it in my browser just above your post is plain text in the same font as the rest of the board and all black without any tags whatsoever?


inducing. It's only when replying to your posts though, it's background coding after all.

Though strangely, your last post doesn't have the unnecessary font and color codes at all... Out of curiosity, are you using the WYSIWYG editor?

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Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
And rifles of the same type have no effect on something a tenth the size and two years older which a normal heavy AT gun later blows to bits (goes in one side and out the other) or a 7mm machine gun being outright called 'weak' by it's user 4+ years before the anime. See we can both play this game by picking the source and frankly I have a hard time figuring out how the hell they plan to fit these wildly different takes together.
They can't? There's just too many differences between the two, something I noted a long time ago.

I used the anime because I had easy access to that, should've used the novels like you did. I gotta go back and re-read the translations before continuing this. It's been too long to do a top-of-my-head thing.

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Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
Cept they're using that saved up magic to put up a stronger shield too. They clearly have more magic to burn on firepower, but they're using allot more of it on defense as well. Also how much they can really improve accuracy seems open to speculation. Lynette is pretty clearly supposed to be exceptional in that area though so it's likely most are noticably inferior to her.
Point, it was something of Lynette's expertise. Though as you yourself pointed out, shields are not constantly generated, so those witches capable of ranged tricks could very well have an advantage there.

Hmm... a little theory I'd like to run by, do you think ground witches with a talent for ranged combat might be gathers in a quasi-artillery unit of sorts? Mostly in terms of being put more back than their comrades, and being given weapons designed for range. Being put back means drawing less enemy fire, which means more energy for range, which means sniper/artillery support for the front line.

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That’s a ridiculous argument actually hovering higher would get harder as the amount of lift being produced would drop as would engine power. If hovering near the ground is hard hovering higher in the air would be harder still.
And yet they do it. Constantly. Though this is again the anime, and animating hovering characters is easier than animating characters flying circles in order to stay in the air.
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Old 2009-07-16, 23:06   Link #2010
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Originally Posted by Tk3997
... So a .50 cal can "Shred a tank to pieces" now? Tomoko was uncomfortable about HMG bullets coming close to her and the machine guns used by the early Neuroi are also a threat. Ergo airborne witches are vulnerable to massed machine gun fire, massed machine gun fire is not something that's all that hard to produce from a mechanized formation like those used by the Neuroi.

Book 1
Spoiler:


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Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
Given the threat of air attack it seems rather absurd to assume that the Triple A covering Neuroi advances isn't of more or less equal hazard. This ignores that going down low and wallowing about in a slow speed hover would make you meat on the table for anyone above you. This again is why I keep shooting down the idea that airborne witches have any business being very slow and near the ground, ever.
Book 3, chapter 4 - SEAD.
Spoiler:


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Originally Posted by Keroko View Post
Hmm... a little theory I'd like to run by, do you think ground witches with a talent for ranged combat might be gathers in a quasi-artillery unit of sorts? Mostly in terms of being put more back than their comrades, and being given weapons designed for range. Being put back means drawing less enemy fire, which means more energy for range, which means sniper/artillery support for the front line.
Why not just make a plain old artillery piece? There's no way a witch could carry anything near the size of the larger pieces, and when those things could already shoot some 10+km, it probably isn't all that necessary to waste a witch operating it.

Again, in book 3:
Spoiler:

Anyway, important thing to remember is that no matter how powerful they may be, the witches (no matter land or air) are still classified as "infantry".
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Old 2009-07-17, 23:04   Link #2011
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This was quite interesting TK, the Light Novel held a bit more in military realism than the anime
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Old 2009-07-18, 02:06   Link #2012
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I went digging and found a few nice quotes regarding what I was talking about with regards to ground attack.

“When you approach your position, you're doing 280 mph, that's the cruising speed. When the leader says, "Going down now!", he's right over the target and you go straight down. If you don't fall forward and hang in your straps, you're not going straight down. The straighter you go down, the more accurate you are. If we weren't expecting any flak, we'd dive from 8,000 - 4,000 feet. That was our standard dive. By the time you got to 4,000 you were doing 500 mph. It takes a bit of pull to get out of there. You don't want to black out. “

“A strafing run started by lining up on your target at about a half-mile out, getting it squarely in your gunsight as you approached at about 400 - 500 mph, opening fire at 400 yards, fire about 15 rounds from each cannon, which was about a one-second burst, and pull up just missing the top of the target.”

Even using such tactics didn’t provide perfect protection by any stretch of the imagination though.

“The Germans put a ring of guns around bridges, and they fired them to a cone right in the middle. They knew we had to go down through that cone. They wouldn't aim at us; they just created this cone of fire that we had to go through. We always lost somebody on a bridge. “

“We lost eight Typhoons in the Ardennes. I was the only guy able to bail out. The other seven were killed. That was a rough league down there. The German vehicles were everywhere. They were all at the crossroads and they couldn't move. It was easy to pick out targets, but we were losing guys. They were pretty accurate with their flak, and we were glad to get out of there.”

These are from an interview with Canadian Air Force Typhoon pilot Harry Hardy. The entire thing can be found here http://www.tarrif.net/wwii/interviews/harry_hardy.htm.
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Old 2009-07-18, 04:01   Link #2013
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In response to the quotes about their shields being taken down by massed mg fire, I believe it is the passive shields that surround the witches, and not the 'active' (the flat round magic circles) shields that they form consciously. I don't think the striker units had active shields till later. Just look at the novel illustrations. Katherine seems to be able to form an 'active' shield at some point. Maybe they figured out how to make them by studying hers. So while the passive shields seen in the beginning of the novels may be vulnerable to massed fire, the ones later on may not. (I am guessing on the passive active thing since I have not read all the novels yet. I do believe it is a valid point though.)

On the effectiveness of their weapons.
Lets assume the shortened range caused by the short barrels is offset by the added distance created by magic, and the recoil is not a major factor due to increased strength. This leaves the projectile itself. If the projectile is coated a a shell of energy, it could add semi armor piercing and explosive abilities to normal bullets. (The bullet carries the shell, the shell lets the bullet penetrate deeper than normal, and then the shell releases its remaining energy explosively.) How else would an auto-pistol be of any use in an aerial fight. I seem to remember one or two witches being armed with them as their primary weapons. If the penetration effectiveness is the only thing enhanced then 5 or 6 rounds hitting roughly the same target area would have the effect of larger weapons. This is feasible since their enhanced strength starts to negate recoil along with their somewhat enhanced aiming ability. Lastly wouldn't it be smart to build weapons and ammo which are meant to be used by witches and not used for other units? (the weapons could be modified to take advantage of the magic energy //end speculation)

Also as a side note, the enemy seems to value fast regeneration abilities over defensive armor. So bullets which penetrate deeper would be more useful.

As for why tank witches seem to be used more often than regular forces, don't forget the miasma. It dissolves junk like the ground. especially metal...
I believe your analysis of the tank withes mostly holds true though. Why else would they need to develop such a large unit in the tank Doujin.

"Point, though amusingly none of the witches seem to suffer problems in accuracy when pulling these stunts." Since the witches are flying without wings, it is safe to assume their striker units act like magic brooms meaning they would have a finer degree of control then a regular aircraft. If the witch is flying along parallel to the X axis of a 3d graph, she would have at most moderate control of her movement in the Y and Z directions. This and other control factors the striker units may have along with their increased strength, ability to use magic to help them aim, and added damage would make such maneuvers a bit more feasible than first thought. It would still be difficult though, and yes they would still be at a disadvantage in that position.
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Old 2009-07-18, 04:16   Link #2014
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Originally Posted by EvilSamurai View Post
In response to the quotes about their shields being taken down by massed mg fire, I believe it is the passive shields that surround the witches, and not the 'active' (the flat round magic circles) shields that they form consciously. I don't think the striker units had active shields till later. Just look at the novel illustrations. Katherine seems to be able to form an 'active' shield at some point. Maybe they figured out how to make them by studying hers. So while the passive shields seen in the beginning of the novels may be vulnerable to massed fire, the ones later on may not. (I am guessing on the passive active thing since I have not read all the novels yet. I do believe it is a valid point though.)
Uh, no. They all have those active shields from the beginning.

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Originally Posted by EvilSamurai View Post
On the effectiveness of their weapons.
Lets assume the shortened range caused by the short barrels is offset by the added distance created by magic, and the recoil is not a major factor due to increased strength. This leaves the projectile itself. If the projectile is coated a a shell of energy, it could add semi armor piercing and explosive abilities to normal bullets. (The bullet carries the shell, the shell lets the bullet penetrate deeper than normal, and then the shell releases its remaining energy explosively.) How else would an auto-pistol be of any use in an aerial fight. I seem to remember one or two witches being armed with them as their primary weapons. If the penetration effectiveness is the only thing enhanced then 5 or 6 rounds hitting roughly the same target area would have the effect of larger weapons. This is feasible since their enhanced strength starts to negate recoil along with their somewhat enhanced aiming ability. Lastly wouldn't it be smart to build weapons and ammo which are meant to be used by witches and not used for other units? (the weapons could be modified to take advantage of the magic energy //end speculation)
The problem with armor is that generally it either deflects the bullet and there's no overall effect on the target, or it penetrates. A weak round, no matter how many shots hit, won't even dent thick RHA, so you can't really compare many weak guns to a larger one.

Guns of 7.7 and 13mm caliber are actually deemed obsolete pretty early on (book 2 which is 1940), so yeah, those auto-pistols (?) aren't exactly useful. That's one big bone I have to pick with the anime. For some obscure reason, all their infantry rifles can damage enormous experimental weapons in 1944? While shots simply bounce off of early Neuroi planes in 1939? They needed an air-to-air rocket to even hope of ever getting through the armor of an early heavy bomber.
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Old 2009-07-18, 04:21   Link #2015
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ok thanks for clearing that up. But I am curious how Katherine keeps coming out of all her crashes with no injuries while others get injured.
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Old 2009-07-18, 04:39   Link #2016
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She's just the toughest of the bunch. They use her as the tanker of the squadron after all
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Old 2009-07-18, 04:48   Link #2017
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Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
Why not just make a plain old artillery piece? There's no way a witch could carry anything near the size of the larger pieces, and when those things could already shoot some 10+km, it probably isn't all that necessary to waste a witch operating it.
Quite it wouldn’t be very hard to make it self propelled either large numbers of M7 Priests were already getting into action by the time of El Alamein for instance. The effect of well massed and accurate artillery is also often ignored or poorly understood by many writers in my opinion. It is on a sidenote often an under appreciated fact that the American artillery branch in WWII was the world leader beating anything else on the planet in density of fire, accuracy of fire, and responsiveness (The British were quite close, but then they where also US allies). The Germans had the edge in tanks, but US fire support was vastly better and artillery is the biggest killer in war.

Really Artillery in general gets ignored far too often in fiction.

Quote:
Again, in book 3:
Spoiler:

Anyway, important thing to remember is that no matter how powerful they may be, the witches (no matter land or air) are still classified as "infantry".
Well that just confirms something I'd always suspected which is that Witches would make rather bad bombers (Which would only get worse with time since a 43-44 F4U, P-38, or P-47 could haul up to around 1,800 kilos into the air per plane.) and be used mostly as escorts for laden (and thus vulnerable) conventional aircraft filling that role whenever possible.



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Originally Posted by Keroko View Post


inducing. It's only when replying to your posts though, it's background coding after all.

Though strangely, your last post doesn't have the unnecessary font and color codes at all... Out of curiosity, are you using the WYSIWYG editor?
Yeah I'm using WYSIWYG. What happens is that oddly sometimes when I paste from Word it works fine and everything is perfect, other times it messes up the fonts and I have to switch them back using the editor so it won't look retarded, but this creates a bunch of tags in the background.

Quote:
They can't?
Well Marseille's MG-34 didn't seem to do jack to the giant walker, indeed she barely even bothered trying to attack it or the other ground vehicles targeting the presumably more lightly armored airborne units.

Quote:
There's just too many differences between the two, something I noted a long time ago.
Quite, but IIRC the creators keep insisting they're the same universe.

Quote:
I used the anime because I had easy access to that, should've used the novels like you did. I gotta go back and re-read the translations before continuing this. It's been too long to do a top-of-my-head thing.
Well allot of this I'm also basing off stuff Sel has mentioned off hand in the thread, I do have a knack for recalling random useless trivia if nothing else.

Quote:
Point, it was something of Lynette's expertise. Though as you yourself pointed out, shields are not constantly generated, so those witches capable of ranged tricks could very well have an advantage there.
Possibly, but you have to consider in the air you can normally see danger coming so you can afford not to have your defenses on all the time to save energy. On the ground that would be extremely risky and at the very least a witch would need to maintain a shield strong enough to stop small arms fire at all times in combat to keep snipers from picking them off or an unseen foe dropping them with one bursts of a machine gun. Probably they'd run them at full power all the time since if they didn't they'd be vulnerable to ambush by weapons they could normally survive.

It’s just like body armor the one day you go out without it deciding you don’t need it will be the day you need it most. It's also why most commanders really don't give people a choice about wearing it. If you did you know some fools gonna decide he's hot shit and just won't get hit and then he's gonna die from a quarter inch piece of shrapnel going into his heart. You'd also have guys that would wear it most of the time, but then one really hot day when they're really tired would decide to leave it to save weight and get killed.

So I'm 99% sure that the rule is "Once we cross into Indian country everyone has their shields on all the time, no exceptions."


Quote:
Hmm... a little theory I'd like to run by, do you think ground witches with a talent for ranged combat might be gathers in a quasi-artillery unit of sorts? Mostly in terms of being put more back than their comrades, and being given weapons designed for range. Being put back means drawing less enemy fire, which means more energy for range, which means sniper/artillery support for the front line.
A mobile light infantry force should indeed have its own organic light artillery.

We call it a Mortar Section:

Mount them in a half-track if you’re worried they won’t keep up and keep the Witches out front where they're best used.

Quote:
And yet they do it. Constantly. Though this is again the anime, and animating hovering characters is easier than animating characters flying circles in order to stay in the air.
I'm almost ready to just say we should ignore most of the anime visuals as totally inconsistent with everything else we've been told.

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Originally Posted by EvilSamurai View Post
In response to the quotes about their shields being taken down by massed mg fire, I believe it is the passive shields that surround the witches, and not the 'active' (the flat round magic circles) shields that they form consciously. I don't think the striker units had active shields till later. Just look at the novel illustrations. Katherine seems to be able to form an 'active' shield at some point. Maybe they figured out how to make them by studying hers. So while the passive shields seen in the beginning of the novels may be vulnerable to massed fire, the ones later on may not. (I am guessing on the passive active thing since I have not read all the novels yet. I do believe it is a valid point though.)
Bust by Sel so moving on...

Quote:
On the effectiveness of their weapons.
Lets assume the shortened range caused by the short barrels is offset by the added distance created by magic, and the recoil is not a major factor due to increased strength. This leaves the projectile itself. If the projectile is coated a a shell of energy, it could add semi armor piercing and explosive abilities to normal bullets. (The bullet carries the shell, the shell lets the bullet penetrate deeper than normal, and then the shell releases its remaining energy explosively.) How else would an auto-pistol be of any use in an aerial fight. I seem to remember one or two witches being armed with them as their primary weapons. If the penetration effectiveness is the only thing enhanced then 5 or 6 rounds hitting roughly the same target area would have the effect of larger weapons.
I think what you're saying here is that if you could produce a smaller weapon that could still penetrate a targets armor that would be as good as a big gun.

I don’t doubt it penetrates more then a normal round that’s not in dispute. My point was that it clearly did not boost it enough to make light weapons viable against heavy armor. So magic clearly helps, but only so much and clearly the parameters of the weapon itself are a (even the) critical factor in if a target can be defeated. You’re argument is also flawed by assuming that a few weak hits equals a bigger one, even if penetration is possible with both weapons.

Penetration =/= destructive power.

Basically perforating the target is all well and good, but you have to be able to do damage on the other side. This is a fact often missed by people who assume penetration = destruction which is hardly the case at all with a rugged armored vehicle. For instance numerous Abrams have been penetrated by RPGs in various weak points, but being well built and intended to take damage they’ve shrugged theses hits off and only a handful have ever been disabled by these penetrations.

Consider this example; the main gun of an M1A1 can penetrate an estimated 800 odd millimeters of RHA. The armor of a World War II battleship was rarely thicker then about 400 mm RHA. Hence an M1 if given a chance can probably punch holes in a battleship, but do you think it could sink it? Now by the same token the 14 to 16 inch cannons used by most battleships of that era where rated to penetrate something like 600 to 800 millimeters or steel when fired point blank. A modern M1 is said to have something like 800 to 900 millimeters RHAe (Rolled homogenous armor equivalent) on the front turret, but do you seriously think it would survive a 2,000 plus pound shell hitting it frontally at a something like 700 to 800 meters per second?

The answer of course is no way in hell because even a “weak” battleship gun like the British 14 inch had a muzzle energy of something like 200 megajoules (tank AP round 6 to 7). The momentum and sheer energy would rip the connections of the plates apart, probably lift the turret clean off the tank, and kill everyone in it. This is before the dozens of kilograms of HE housed in the shell exploded mind you.

Basically poking holes in something won’t assure a kill if you have no KE and no payload once you’re past the armor. You need something that can punch a big hole and then either deliver a payload (APHE which penetrates then explodes), cause damage with KE (from armor and shell fragments as with large solid shot), or sets off something inside causing secondary damage (most common kill mechanism with HEAT or incendiary rounds in aircraft). In particular the level of energy needed to kill a ground vehicle would increase quite a bit against an unmanned platform as many weapons count on maiming the crew to disable the vehicle. Indeed “knocking out” a tank was often only a temporary thing as if the vehicle did not burn badly when hit the side holding the field nearly always recovered, repaired, and returned to service the damaged machine.

Against aircraft them being unmanned helps less as most kills later in the war (once rifle caliber MGs went the way of the dodo) came from simply using HE shells or Heavy Machine guns to shred aircraft's light structure and cause them to crash or burn.

This is also why ground witches need much heavier weapons as well. Disabling the propulsion of an aircraft or slightly damaging its flight controls can send it out of control and into the ground. With a ground vehicle though things are not nearly so easy and disabling its propulsion simply makes it into a massively armed pillbox. With no crew who’ll panic and bail or can be killed by minor penetrations you’d need to keep pumping shots into it to finish the job. The lack of a crew could also allow for a smaller vehicle with considerably thicker armor for its mass (depends on how big the equipment needed control it is and a certain minimum size is needed to house various systems so it wouldn’t be a huge decrease). That said the Neuroi manage to piss much of that edge away by using bloody walkers. Since these are not inherently stable shooting off the legs would topple the fuckers and probably cause a face plant that makes continued fighting impossible thus allowing it to be ignored for later disposal. The legs are also impossible to armor well and drastically increase surface area making any armor that is mounted thinner over the entire surface of the machine quite possibly totally negating the advantage of being unmanned.

Then again I suppose in this case it’s a good thing they’re idiots.

Quote:
This is feasible since their enhanced strength starts to negate recoil along with their somewhat enhanced aiming ability. Lastly wouldn't it be smart to build weapons and ammo which are meant to be used by witches and not used for other units? (the weapons could be modified to take advantage of the magic energy //end speculation)
I've never really bought that "extra strength" would increase accuracy that much myself. First off the fact is that at anything beyond close range it's not recoil, but aiming error that's the problem. Wind, gravity, visibility, elevation all are variables that have nothing to do with weapon control that drastically affect accuracy. I mean after all snipers fire single shots so recoil is a non-factor for them and they nearly always shot from a bi-pod in the prone position making them there aim rock steady. Despite this they still find striking targets with the aid of high magnification scope at ranges beyond a few hundred meters a challenge under good range conditions. In bad conditions, under fire, tired, hungry... well I doubt they'd shot better. Basically the only time strength might be an asset is in a close range moving gunfight with a large automatic weapon... exactly the kind of the thing that almost never happens in real battles.

Another problem is that recoil isn't totally uniform and unidirectional look at a gun, it's not just climbing it's shaking all over the place. The parts of a gun are not static and as you fire they flex and vibrate sometimes a surprisingly large amount. Not even clamping it down can totally stop this and I very much doubt a witch would come close to that level of solidity in holding the weapon.

As for custom weapons well I don't recall 40 odd millimeter single shot rifles and 20mm autocannons being general issue to the infantry in World War II.

Quote:
"Point, though amusingly none of the witches seem to suffer problems in accuracy when pulling these stunts." Since the witches are flying without wings, it is safe to assume their striker units act like magic brooms meaning they would have a finer degree of control then a regular aircraft. If the witch is flying along parallel to the X axis of a 3d graph, she would have at most moderate control of her movement in the Y and Z directions. This and other control factors the striker units may have along with their increased strength, ability to use magic to help them aim, and added damage would make such maneuvers a bit more feasible than first thought. It would still be difficult though, and yes they would still be at a disadvantage in that position.
Or we could assume they don't impart much stability or help much with off Axis shooting which is why it's rarely done. You can't really prove or disprove either, but we can observe that high off line of travel shooting seems rare.

Quote:
Originally Posted by EvilSamurai View Post
ok thanks for clearing that up. But I am curious how Katherine keeps coming out of all her crashes with no injuries while others get injured.
Well you where part right she does have a different short of shield that protects her alright:
Character Shields
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Old 2009-07-18, 05:22   Link #2018
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Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
Quite, but IIRC the creators keep insisting they're the same universe.

A mobile light infantry force should indeed have its own organic light artillery.

We call it a Mortar Section:
Actually, one of the main creators has mentioned that the anime "left out a lot of things that couldn't be shown", so I personally consider it to be less reliable. However, a lot of the early material has indeed been retconned to somewhat match the anime, say, the Neuroi black honeycomb designs.

As for the mortar, I was thinking of that earlier as well, but really, it's another role that normal men could fulfill quite competently, without having to waste witches. In general, they shouldn't be under fire anyway, they pack a nice punch by themselves, and you need a couple people to move around with and haul ammo. Why waste witches to use a mortar?
(Like you said)
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Old 2009-07-18, 15:11   Link #2019
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If I gave the impression that I thought penetration = destructive power, I am sorry. That was not my intention. I did mention that maybe the magic added an explosive component to the bullets. So several less kinetically destructive rounds grouped in the same area could be almost as damaging as the larger rounds. Another thing I thought of was maybe their magic interferes with the neuroi body structure. They are made of a light like substance.

As for accuracy, from all the official pictures I have seen, the witches tend to get very close to the target before firing. So the only ones who would have to worry about ranged accuracy would be people with roles like Lynnett.
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Old 2009-07-20, 07:29   Link #2020
Keroko
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Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
Yeah I'm using WYSIWYG. What happens is that oddly sometimes when I paste from Word it works fine and everything is perfect, other times it messes up the fonts and I have to switch them back using the editor so it won't look retarded, but this creates a bunch of tags in the background.
Heh. One of the main reasons I loathe WYSIWYG. Though that may also be a remnant of my html courses, I'm used to working with codes.

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Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
Well Marseille's MG-34 didn't seem to do jack to the giant walker, indeed she barely even bothered trying to attack it or the other ground vehicles targeting the presumably more lightly armored airborne units.
Sarcasm, Tk. Sarcasm. That was a reply to your question of how they were going to fit those two together.

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Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
Quite, but IIRC the creators keep insisting they're the same universe.
I say ignore most of what happens on screen, and rely on booklets and novels fr the actual info. Anime is too limited by time, effort, budget and rule of cool to match up to actual written info.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
Well allot of this I'm also basing off stuff Sel has mentioned off hand in the thread, I do have a knack for recalling random useless trivia if nothing else.
So do I most of the time, but the amount of Strike Witches trivia you can remember astounds me.

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Originally Posted by Tk3997 View Post
I'm almost ready to just say we should ignore most of the anime visuals as totally inconsistent with everything else we've been told.
Done.

Quote:
Originally Posted by selkirk View Post
Book 1
Spoiler:

[/COLOR]

Book 3, chapter 4 - SEAD.
Spoiler:



Why not just make a plain old artillery piece? There's no way a witch could carry anything near the size of the larger pieces, and when those things could already shoot some 10+km, it probably isn't all that necessary to waste a witch operating it.

Again, in book 3:
Spoiler:

Anyway, important thing to remember is that no matter how powerful they may be, the witches (no matter land or air) are still classified as "infantry".
Yeah, that pretty much seals the deal. Blatant statements versus interpretations of animation? I'll choose the novel here.
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