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CMOPS: Combat Mission Operations

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Hi folks,

I mentioned in another thread (http://community.battlefront.com/topic/121877-best-way-to-play-operational-level/?page=1) awhile back that I was working on a Combat Mission operational/larger battle type of game system using the VASSAL program (which is a boardgame program). After a big move to another part of the state, and taking care of just life stuff in general, I finally got a chance to finish my test bed game covering the Counterattack at Gela called CMOPS (Combat Mission Operations). VASSAL engine is a program that is used to play a lot of popular printed wargames. I was able to use the program to create my own type of wargame that can be tied in with Combat Mission. This concept is similar to using John Tiller's Panzer Campaigns (which is already a great system) with Combat Mission, however VASSAL is free to download and use, which is used to play the module I created.

I made this primarily for myself and a friend to play a larger battle that is resolved in Combat Mission FI/GL, but I'd like to share it with anyone who is interested in alternative ways to play with Combat Mission.

You can download the zip file here, which contains the Gela battle file module for VASSAL and a PDF rulebook on how to setup and play the game with Combat Mission.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/linrd7g3dttmg3y/CMOPSGela.zip?dl=0

Time permitting, I'll create more battles and battlepacks to play other forces/nations with the other Combat Mission games. For starters, this is what I've created.

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Am I missing something? Your CMOPS rules seem to cover wins and losses on the CM battle and how to take them back to CMOPS, but not draws. Do you set up a continuation battle (a further 30 mins) using the previous battle as start point?

Oh, and should have the battles ending exactly on 30 mins, or give the variable end and just ignore the few minutes of the next CMOPS turn you have 'used'

 

ok, forget this, I have re-read the battle set up: with one objective only there can't be a draw. Editing the battle after 30 mins would need an umpire or else absolute trust... see why you did it now

Edited by Sailor Malan2
Thought about it!

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Thanks for spotting that question. I should mention that there shouldn't be a draw result. A few technicalities have popped up from other questions, so I'll work on a slight revision to the rules, soon.

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If I may offer some thoughts: your "digging in"/"create defenses" is far too fast/generous. In 1 hour you allow far too many foxholes and trenches. Also wire, mines and tank obstacles should be made even slower again. Some classes of defence (mines, vehicle obstacles) should need engineers. It needs some increase in complexity, but I would argue that defenses should be 2 hours to get 1 foxhole per team or 10 per platoon maybe (and nothing else). Additional activity longer than 2 hours can give further foxholes, or other defenses.. You could include numeric counters to count the hours of prep.I would aim at say 5 hours (with engineer support) to get your level of fortifications.

Also I would make each unit be separately tracked - one company fortifying gives one company defenses, not enough for all units in the stack..

The other big issue I would like to see would be some form of command system and artillery control differences. US/UK artillery command was much more flexible than German (although German systems gave more 'intimate' support by smaller guns). CM uneven battles means this is relevant. A German company can have battalion mortars or a 75 mm bty quite often if pre-declared, but Allied forces should have maybe a diced system having all guns in range as options (although progressively less likely the more they have already allocated). Actually using a battery then makes it be marked as fired after the battle. But that is all a much bigger change, and may be too much. I am researching wargame rules that would give a good brigade command type game, with CM execution very much as you have it...

i would think that something with order delays on the strategic map would be nice too! Without having played it 

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I would agree with Sailor Malan2 on the digging in point, even to his timetables.  However I would say that a line infantry unit should have to entrench in stages, but that this should take place in any "posture" aside from attack.  So a unit that is not moving or attacking automatically gets foxholes, 1 per team, after 2 hours, but may not build any other fortifications in this time period - the first thing any infantry unit that stops does is dig in, and this takes 2 hours on average.  Guns also emplace during this time, if in suitable terrain.  Line infantry in a defensive posture and in supply can start building further defensive works at the fol rates:

2 mines OR 2 Wire lengths OR 1 trench length per platoon per hour.  A platoon in this sense is as given in the OB, and teams don't count.  So a full OB American Coy gets 4 platoons worth of work per hour.  Rates are halved after darkness.

Engineers are the only ones who can build vehicle obstacles.  They do not need to dig in like line Infantry (although they can if they want to) and build at the following rates:

1 mine OR 1 wire length OR 1 trench OR 1 vehicle obstacle per squad per hour, halved in darkness.

Out of supply troops can build only foxholes or trenches, at the usual rate.

Just spitballing here, obviously, and this brings with it a bit of bookkeeping that may be undesirable, but I think it is a bit more realistic in terms of timelines.

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Like your clarification there... completely agree. Tracking entrenchment state in a board wargame would be a nightmare, but in Vassal where markers can be infinite it should be possible. Just index the 'digging in duration' marker by 1 per turn.

Oh, and I know you meant this as well, but units shouldn't acquire foxholes if they move or attack! ;)

 

I am still looking into artillery refinements based on national practice. To misquote http://www.fireandfury.com/artillerytutorial/artytut.shtml  (hope that's OK, BFC, as it is miniatures not a computer competitor!), German: “It's mine-you can't use it.",    Russia: “Sorry, we can't do that...”, British: ” To them that have much will be given”. US: ” Anything you want, you've got it…if the FDC likes you”!:)

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That's a good point. I can make a "countdown" construct fortifications counter. A lot of wargames do this, and as stated, one marker in vassal can have multiple "faces" to them. There aren't a whole lot of turns in this particular scenario, so digging in would have to be within at least two turns (or I can try reducing the number of types of fortifications an infantry unit does). Trying to strike a balance between gameplay and accuracy can be difficult, but I'll make a change in the upcoming pack. I can scale back the types of fortifications and give certain types to engineers. This adds a little bit to the rules, but it's not too much to ask for.

I like your artillery suggestion a lot; I'll see what I can do with it.

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On 10/11/2016 at 7:42 AM, Stele said:

gelasplash3.png

Hi folks,

I mentioned in another thread (http://community.battlefront.com/topic/121877-best-way-to-play-operational-level/?page=1) awhile back that I was working on a Combat Mission operational/larger battle type of game system using the VASSAL program (which is a boardgame program). After a big move to another part of the state, and taking care of just life stuff in general, I finally got a chance to finish my test bed game covering the Counterattack at Gela called CMOPS (Combat Mission Operations). VASSAL engine is a program that is used to play a lot of popular printed wargames. I was able to use the program to create my own type of wargame that can be tied in with Combat Mission. This concept is similar to using John Tiller's Panzer Campaigns (which is already a great system) with Combat Mission, however VASSAL is free to download and use, which is used to play the module I created.

I made this primarily for myself and a friend to play a larger battle that is resolved in Combat Mission FI/GL, but I'd like to share it with anyone who is interested in alternative ways to play with Combat Mission.

You can download the zip file here, which contains the Gela battle file module for VASSAL and a PDF rulebook on how to setup and play the game with Combat Mission.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/linrd7g3dttmg3y/CMOPSGela.zip?dl=0

Time permitting, I'll create more battles and battlepacks to play other forces/nations with the other Combat Mission games. For starters, this is what I've created.

Stele,

This looks great. Where do we sign up, fresh faced, unblooded captain/major/colonel sign up :D

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On 1/11/2017 at 2:22 AM, Stele said:

That's a good point. I can make a "countdown" construct fortifications counter. A lot of wargames do this, and as stated, one marker in vassal can have multiple "faces" to them. There aren't a whole lot of turns in this particular scenario, so digging in would have to be within at least two turns (or I can try reducing the number of types of fortifications an infantry unit does). Trying to strike a balance between gameplay and accuracy can be difficult, but I'll make a change in the upcoming pack. I can scale back the types of fortifications and give certain types to engineers. This adds a little bit to the rules, but it's not too much to ask for.

I like your artillery suggestion a lot; I'll see what I can do with it.

Stele, for 2 hour dig in, just allow foxholes, enough for all elements doing the digging...

On 1/11/2017 at 2:22 AM, Stele said:

 

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