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How to Hull down, with Pictures!

Hulldown Tough Turret American British

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blackfalconjc #1 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 19:03

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I keep seeing a lot of posts on the forum about "how to a play such and such a tank", and then they lament about how that tank never treats them right. 

 

I take one look at the tank, and quickly realize, it's not the tank, it's the player and positioning that they keep taking the tank to that keep letting them down. Certain tanks, as a design mantra, were/are designed to play "hull down". This means the the turret armor is generally stronger and better angled then the hull armor. This leads many tankers to assume that the tank is garbage, as they take it out on level ground, trade shots with the enemy, then watch in disbelief as shot after shot gets pumped into their weaker hull armor and they eventually go "boom"!

 

British and American tanks generally follow this pattern pretty hard, and everyone assumes that only the hilliest of maps is where these tanks can be used to their greatest potential. Generally speaking, this isn't wrong, but canny use of the terrain you do have can maximize your tanks stronger turret to beat out enemy tanks. 

 

Hulldown 1: Backslope Hulldown

 

This is what most people think about when they think Hulldown. The (green for friendly) tank assumes a position just below the crest of the hill, then pops up just the barest little bit of turret and gun using the good gun depression to "peer" over the hill and get shots at the enemy. 

 

Hulldown II: Downslope Hulldown

 

Here the positions are essentially reversed. Our intrepid tanker has managed to get an enemy tank with poor gun depression caught on the hill, while he's using the top of the hill to hide his hull. He'd better be careful though, as any other tanks with a clear line of site at the top of the hill will have a shot at him!

 

Hulldown III: Depression is a good thing!

 

Here are tanker has adopted a nearby shell crater, ditch, or road to keep his hull hidden. Even if the enemy tank does have depression to shoot at his hull somewhat, 2/3 of the shell dispersion circle is still being covered by the turret/mantlet armor.

 

Hulldown IV: The obstacle

 

Here our tanker found themselves having to fight in a city or fairly flat area. Knowing that their hull is still pretty weak, he's found and hid behind a large enough obstacle to hide his hull, yet keep his turret and gun exposed and firing! 

 

Hulldown V: The sideslope

 

Here our tanker has found a corridor that they'd like to help out with, but nary a hill, rock to hide behind. So he drives his tank up onto the side of the hill. As seens from the back of the tanks, from this position, he can scuttle forward and backwards, turn left or right to deal with threats, and quickly back out if needed. This basically gives the same angling and positions as Hulldown I, just using the different available terrain.

 

TL-DR? Look at the picts really quick. Each is a situation where you might not consider hiding a tank, but can offer some good hard cover from incoming shells, if your tank as the gun depression to handle it. Try taking those Brit and American tanks out again and trying it out!!



awsome1808 #2 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 19:07

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whats a hull ??

CheekiBreeki_ #3 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 19:07

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Is the concept of being hull down really something thats hard to understand? o.O

blackfalconjc #4 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 19:27

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View PostCheekiBreeki_, on Oct 10 2016 - 13:07, said:

Is the concept of being hull down really something thats hard to understand? o.O

 

Apparently, a lot of people complain on the forum about being placed on a city map in a hulldown tank... IE: "I'm in a Comet and I get thrown on Stalingrad, where the hell am I supposed to fight!? (Answer, beach or in cover/opportunitistic on the western side)

Vampiresbane #5 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 19:46

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View Postblackfalconjc, on Oct 10 2016 - 18:27, said:

 

Apparently, a lot of people complain on the forum about being placed on a city map in a hulldown tank... IE: "I'm in a Comet and I get thrown on Stalingrad, where the hell am I supposed to fight!? (Answer, beach or in cover/opportunitistic on the western side)

 

Good work OP.  Great pictures for those folks that are new to being hull down.  Ignore the trolls, though they are useful to bumping threads.

ThePigSheFlies #6 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 19:52

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View Postblackfalconjc, on Oct 10 2016 - 13:27, said:

 

Apparently, a lot of people complain on the forum about being placed on a city map in a hulldown tank... IE: "I'm in a Comet and I get thrown on Stalingrad, where the hell am I supposed to fight!? (Answer, beach or in cover/opportunitistic on the western side)

 

a ridge fighter is not the same thing as a 'hull down' tank.

 

a comet is a ridge fighter.  and that map is pretty much horrifyingly bad anyway



blackfalconjc #7 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 20:11

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View PostThePigSheFlies, on Oct 10 2016 - 13:52, said:

 

a ridge fighter is not the same thing as a 'hull down' tank.

 

a comet is a ridge fighter.  and that map is pretty much horrifyingly bad anyway

 

You are right that there is a distinction, usually granted by Power/weight ratio and overall mobility. However, when choosing how/where to use changes in elevation to hide weaker hull armor, both ridgeline fighters and hull down tanks use the same general principles. Ridgeline fighters should take an opportunistic shot and run away, and a true hull down tank would stay and absorb the hits into the turret (or slightly retreat during reload, and try to let hits bounce when it takes the next shot)

 

Actually, I love taking hull down tanks and ridge fighters on Stalingrad. The river had a lot of undulations and depressions for both to play with, and you can flank pretty effectively. It's generally the city heavy brawling area that generally sucks. I hardly ever go there anymore...



QuicksilverJPR #8 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 20:38

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Posted Image

 

Some more visual cues for folks  ;)



riff_ #9 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 20:40

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View Postawsome1808, on Oct 10 2016 - 13:07, said:

whats a hull ??

 

​Seeing your clan name is NHL.  This is where I would usually post a picture of Bobby Hull but with WG having no sense of humor, I shall not.  To bad too, Bobby Hull a heck of a Hockey player.

Awestryker #10 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 20:49

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One trick i'm starting to learn to use more is...being able to find spots where you can use rocks or other terrain features to give your tank some extra angles....

 

A specific example is on El Halluf around C2 and B2 for each side of the map...if your in a fast tank, there are rocks/hills you can put the front of your tank up onto to allow you some extra gun depression so you can hit the heavies as they roll by to the A1 area without exposing yourself to much...

 

Every map has things like that you can exploit if you recognize them...


Edited by Awestryker, Oct 10 2016 - 20:51.


blackfalconjc #11 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 20:59

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View PostQuicksilverJPR, on Oct 10 2016 - 14:38, said:

Posted Image

 

Some more visual cues for folks  ;)

 

Fantastic!

 

I like the Turret down position, I've learned to use the commander Cupola like a mini turret to check behind a hill before going up for a shot. Gives you vision before exposing more than the merest sliver of your tank... :)



Gang_Starr #12 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 21:30

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Step 1: go hull down

Step 2: outplay and outskill all the idiots that try to trade while you are in a good position

Step 3: get 1-shotted by sky cancer sitting 800 meters away because game mechanic not broken.



InquisitorSomme #13 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 21:37

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View PostGang_Starr, on Oct 10 2016 - 21:30, said:

Step 1: go hull down

Step 2: outplay and outskill all the idiots that try to trade while you are in a good position

Step 3: get 1-shotted by sky cancer sitting 800 meters away because game mechanic not broken.

 

 

This. This a lot.



WarStore #14 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 21:45

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I see your tactics and skill and raise my skill equalizer.

 

 

Thank God WG added a mechanic to make every single one of those spots completely useless.



Deathstar_Commander #15 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 21:49

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View PostGang_Starr, on Oct 10 2016 - 21:30, said:

Step 1: go hull down

Step 2: outplay and outskill all the idiots that try to trade while you are in a good position

Step 3: get 1-shotted by sky cancer sitting 800 meters away because game mechanic not broken.

 



blackfalconjc #16 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 21:51

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View PostGang_Starr, on Oct 10 2016 - 15:30, said:

Step 1: go hull down

Step 2: outplay and outskill all the idiots that try to trade while you are in a good position

Step 3: get 1-shotted by sky cancer sitting 800 meters away because game mechanic not broken.

 

Hull down doesn't = immobile. And if you're hull down in a spot that is open to arty and you're not moving, well, you've got no one to blame but yourself for the result!

 

I like to do the "arty wanna hit me?" jig while reloading or working a hull down ridge line. The key is to minimize the amount of time you're lit and exposed to incoming fire, then get out before arty notices. I'll play completely differently though if I know I'm arty safe (like no arty, yay!), and if I know I'm controlling the angles to the side of my turret from incoming fire... 

 

Also, never pop up in the same place more than twice.... Can't tell you how many times I've seen people do that, every time, pulling forward into my carefully pre-aimed shot and then me scuttling back before they can aim down and shoot back. Arty does the same too!



blackfalconjc #17 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 21:51

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View PostGang_Starr, on Oct 10 2016 - 15:30, said:

Step 1: go hull down

Step 2: outplay and outskill all the idiots that try to trade while you are in a good position

Step 3: get 1-shotted by sky cancer sitting 800 meters away because game mechanic not broken.

 

Hull down doesn't = immobile. And if you're hull down in a spot that is open to arty and you're not moving, well, you've got no one to blame but yourself for the result!

 

I like to do the "arty wanna hit me?" jig while reloading or working a hull down ridge line. The key is to minimize the amount of time you're lit and exposed to incoming fire, then get out before arty notices. I'll play completely differently though if I know I'm arty safe (like no arty, yay!), and if I know I'm controlling the angles to the side of my turret from incoming fire... 

 

Also, never pop up in the same place more than twice.... Can't tell you how many times I've seen people do that, every time, pulling forward into my carefully pre-aimed shot and then me scuttling back before they can aim down and shoot back. Arty does the same too!



ThePigSheFlies #18 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 21:59

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View Postblackfalconjc, on Oct 10 2016 - 14:11, said:

 

You are right that there is a distinction, usually granted by Power/weight ratio and overall mobility. However, when choosing how/where to use changes in elevation to hide weaker hull armor, both ridgeline fighters and hull down tanks use the same general principles. Ridgeline fighters should take an opportunistic shot and run away, and a true hull down tank would stay and absorb the hits into the turret (or slightly retreat during reload, and try to let hits bounce when it takes the next shot)

 

Actually, I love taking hull down tanks and ridge fighters on Stalingrad. The river had a lot of undulations and depressions for both to play with, and you can flank pretty effectively. It's generally the city heavy brawling area that generally sucks. I hardly ever go there anymore...

 

it's a bad map.  way too many map objects to flank efficiently, and most of the lateral lanes are useless.

 

that doesn't mean good games can't be had there, but it is in fact just a bad map - like many of wargaming's funnels.  I was watching The_Cheiftan the other night on twitch and smirked when I saw him on another map say something like "what am I supposed to do here?"

 

I went on a very graphic description of how I felt about that map, and what should be done with it and actually got a laugh out of him...  mostly I was just glad that wargaming staff at times actually plays the game, and actually feels the pain some of us feel with the game mechanics.  whether it's bad maps, arty or RNG...

 

now if we could just get the developers to play, (and suffer) maybe some of it would improve...



InquisitorSomme #19 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 22:24

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View Postblackfalconjc, on Oct 10 2016 - 21:51, said:

 

Hull down doesn't = immobile. And if you're hull down in a spot that is open to arty and you're not moving, well, you've got no one to blame but yourself for the result!

 

Stop peddling this crap. Someone who plays at the front and pushes forward, or is in a slow vehicle that cannot accelerate, can do everything you claim and still get pegged. You can peekaboo all you want, but it's damn useless against something that completely negates it.



ThePigSheFlies #20 Posted Oct 10 2016 - 22:38

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View PostInquisitorSomme, on Oct 10 2016 - 16:24, said:

 

Stop peddling this crap. Someone who plays at the front and pushes forward, or is in a slow vehicle that cannot accelerate, can do everything you claim and still get pegged. You can peekaboo all you want, but it's damn useless against something that completely negates it.

 

especially when they actually nerfed the reverse speed of some of the heavies that excelled at hull down in the past.  give them a strong turret, and a butter hull, which makes them vulnerable to toxically high HE alpa strikes even on misses, and then nerf their reverse speed making them even less able to be unpredictable in movement to avoid artillery fire...




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