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Andreas

CMBB CD scenarios

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As those of you who have already gotten them may have noticed, there are one or two scenarios by me on the CD.

As always I would be quite interested in some feedback on them. You can either do this in this thread - therefore a generic SPOILER ALERT or do it through email in the profile.

Thanks a lot in advance!

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Gefechtsaufklaerung

SPOILER ALERT

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That should be enough space.

I played this scenario as German vs. AI. I like small scenarios a lot (I'm happy that CMBB included a lot on the disk), and I prefer historical scenarios, too.

I very much enjoyed what this scenario asked me to do - it's easy to imagine myself as the platoon commander with a smallish batch of units who's been sent to see what's in these villages. The map was also very good.

Everything was great about this scenario except that I found it a little too easy, at least vs. the AI.

Here's my plan, and here's how it played out:

I wasn't sure what to expect, so I spread my infantry out in the scattered woods, left my HT on the road, and put my IG and Arty spotter in the woods, but close to the road, in a position where they could look down the road and have a clear LOS to the large building with the flag. (I wasn't sure what I'd run into, but I figured it couldn't hurt having LOS to the VL). My plan was to move around slowly, try to identify enemy units, and try to kill the with long range fire from the IG, the StuG, or artillery.

On the first turn, Russian units in foxholes on the far left side of the map opened up at my men, who were not difficult to spot in the scattered woods, apparently. I fired back with the IG and MG fire, and this basically silenced the far-left guys.

I noticed some units running from the left, in front of the village, in the direction of the church. Once again, MG fire plus direct fire IG silenced these guys, although I did take a couple of casualties from an air burst mortar round, causing a casualty to my FO and causing him to lose the fire mission he had planned for that area.

I moved forward a little more, close to the roadblock but still in the scattered trees, and I saw a lot more men milling about around the large building. We exchanged small arms fire, which didn't do much harm to either of us, although a MG kept one of my squads pinned. When I tried to run a squad across the road, a MG opened up, caught the guy in the road, and sent him panicked back to the side he started on. Other units were able to observe the trench near the building.

Because I saw the trench near the building, was fired on from near the building, saw a lot of contacts by the building, as saw the large flag above the building smile.gif , I decided that it was important enough to area fire on it with my IG.

There was a MG in a stone building near the main building that was causing me some problems, so I sent the StuG up slowly to deal with it. Because of a hill and LOS, I had to send my StuG around the wire and approach within about 45m of the stone building to get a shot. But I did this and it was uneventful. Occasionally units would try to rush the StuG from the main building, but they had to cross open area where they could be shot at by two squads, the MG 34, and the MG in the HT. After my FO recovered, I started dropping Arty around the village, too.

And so for several turns, probably half of the game, I pounded the Russians and they couldn't really reply. Eventually, the main building collapsed from the IG, the building with the MG collapsed from the STuG, another building collapsed from the Arty, and most of the survivors were hit by Arty as well.

About the time the three buildings blew up (Turn 13?) I sent two squads and a leader to cross the road block and approach the main building. They shot up a lot of suppressed squads lying around, but the building remained a "?" by the end of the game.

Axis Major Victory, 87-13, I think. I had 6 casualties, one of whom was KIA.

In retrospect, it was too easy for me to just bombard the russians without fear of retaliation. My troops were very sensitive to being fired on (which is good), but I really didn't have to put them in harm's way until the end of the game, when there were very few good order Russians left.

I did discover a 45mm AT gun on the other side of the village when I looked at the map after the game. It wasn't in a location that would have hurt me, though, unless I had charged across the grainfield.

I think that he IG was by far the most effective weapon I had - it could turn pretty quickly to face developing Russian threats - including men just charging across the field.

I'm not sure the best way to make the scenario more balanced - I don't think that it would work to completely remove the IG from the Germans - the infantry units are pretty fragile and do need to be able to fight from long distance with HE and arty. The Germans really would have been in trouble if the Sovs. had been able to muster a real counterattack, too - they had trouble just keeping their heads up when the occasional MG fire or stray mortar round landed nearby.

Anyway, I hope this is helpful, as they say.

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bridgeheads spoiler

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small 10+ turn battle.

nice tight battle. i tried it using only level 1 view. made for some tense early moments as i hear firing and can't tell what anyone is shooting at.

lost quite a few officers, but i got revenge when my guys got close enough to human wave. my third human wave arrived too late to do any damage to retreating enemy but it looked cool at least. sounded like victory hollers.

new behavior from the ai? guys would drop down and SNEAK after the first shots (or is that because sneak replaced crawl?).

can't say that much for the map cause of its tiny size (looks like a postage stamp at 9 view) but it made for a few nice engagements.

i like speedy engagements against the ai so a 8.5 for this scenario.

[ September 25, 2002, 11:15 AM: Message edited by: russellmz ]

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Andreas,

After some fiddling around with quick battles (to look and investigate, etc), the first two scenarios I played were Cemetary Hill and Gefechtsaufklaerungs. I like to do things chronologically, and yours were the two earliest scenarios (though there is a Soviet attack on 41-06-27, I believe).

Spoilers!

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My experience with Gefechtsaufklaerungs was very similiar to what Andrew Hedges posted, though I did not have the HT on the road (from fear) but rather in the scattered trees on the left, to be able to fire on the left side of the village if need be. Late in the game, I brought it a little farther forward in the trees to gain LOS a bit further and the, until that moment, hidden 45mm ATG promptly popped it. Very nice placement of that evil little sucker.

I think if the arty spotter is removed, it will make the German player a little less likely to sit back and pound away. All in all, an excellent scenario, like your Byte Battles.

Now then, Cemetary Hill, which was the first scenario I played, since it has the earliest date, was a different matter. I realize that you designed it for TCP/IP but it looked good so I played it against the AI. I didn't even play by FTC rules (which I usually do vs. the AI) since I was just getting started and wanted to watch everything and learn about all the differences from CMBO firsthand.

I thought, with the low light conditions (which was a great inclusion, btw) that I would set one platoon and the two MG34's up in a position that would allow me to suppress any threats that popped up while I sent the other platoon to the far right to lead the way for all the Pioneers and the flamethrowers to make the real assault.

That turned out to be a bad plan. My demonstration drew some fire but not a whole lot. I became aware of the pillbox on the corner of the church but had a hard time getting any serious fire on it.

Meanwhile, the platoon on the right had no difficulty getting into the woods but when I worked them toward the village, I could only get into the first house, and there was so much mortar fire (several 82's back there, as I found afterwards) that I could not get the Pioneers forward far enough to kick the defenders out and take possession of the flag location. Final result was a minor defeat! To the AI! While embarassing, it was very enjoyable as the CMBO AI only managed a couple of draws over the years, and those were while playing FTC style.

It might prove pretty tough for the German player in TCP/IP, but I don't see any reason to change anything in this one. It played beautifully.

Thanks for your continued good work, Andreas.

David

[ September 26, 2002, 02:17 PM: Message edited by: Vergeltungswaffe ]

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Andreas, you already know that you are my hero. So, we won't get into that right now.

I played "Bridgeheads" (the titles are fuzzy in my mind by now - I've played for 4 days straight)

I really enjoyed the immediate combat. Since I am a simple fellow, I cherished the simplicity of the scenario. I have no spoilers because I know that many others will be sampling your scenario delicacies.

The sight of many Russians attacking does catch the breath. It was awe inspiring.

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Berisovka Station:

I have played this one four times, mainly as a proving ground for various combined arms tactics. I have tried several different strategies against the AI, and have never done better than a draw. The reason for this is something I have mentioned on the main forum, to whit:

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The Luftwaffe. Even when I have used approaches that shielded me from the big Paks, the Jabos destroy my armor with abandon. I wonder whether this is a problem with AA targetting or a combination of bad luck/lack of full understanding of AA. Of course, in my last, and arguably best planned attack, one of my M17s got bogged in the stream bed (possibly putting it out of range of many of the Jabo's runs) and the other got plinked by a well-placed 20mm Flak. So I was without effective AA for that particular go.

In my final run, I sent all my armor w/mounted infantry along the stream bed and arranged them in battle order behind the cover of the woods. As I mentioned, I lost one M17 to bogging and one T-34 when it skylined and was nailed by an 88. I timed my assault to coincide with the Katyusha barrage, which I aimed at far half of the map. The goal was to charge one platoon of infantry to the first row of buildings where they would then be able to regroup and assault the crossroads; the other group would take the patch of woods w/the VL; then reform to assault the factory. A third platoon of tanks and infantry would remain in reserve.

The second half of my inital assault went well -- I took the forest VL with little effort, but the first screwed the pooch when the infantry got separated from command: the only unit to make the first house in good order was the HQ, which got shot up pretty badly. It took several turns to regroup that part of the effort, which is probably why I didn't get a victory in that run. Once the MG squads got organized, the German infantry couldn't stand against them. Only MG 34s at range and HE from the guns could stop them. They are awesome once they get to close quarters, i.e., under 100 yards.

W/o AA, it was only a matter of time before the Jabos made themselves felt. By the end of the game, I had lost all my armored vehicles, 11 to jabos and 3 to Flak. The heroic Red Air Army finally showed up on turn 30 to lay an egg on what remained of the Pakfront, but the scenario ended just as I was about to assault the station VL, which remained in enemy hands. If I had managed to keep my AA alive, I might have managed a minor victory.

I tried other strategies, including frontal assault (not recommended); a flanking maneuver, sending a platoon of tanks and infantry around the cluster of houses on the left side of the map, but that just separated my forces and the flanking units got eaten by the Pakfront and the Luftwaffe. The new optics algorithms mean that even a platoon of T-34s cannot hope to slug it out with an 88 at 1000 yds. The odds are just not in their favor as far as I could tell. Leave it to the arty and the flyboys.

All in all, a great little scenario. Very manageable, lots of fun.

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Hornets' Nest spoiler

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It took me a while to figure out how to use my Hornissen without getting them shot up right at the start of the game. At first I was placing them in hulldown postions on the ridge, but they weren't getting any hits and I was losing one on every turn. I must admit that I was rather disappointed that this much-vaunted weapon was performing so poorly, though that may have just been luck. I was really surprised that the Sov tanks were doing so well at 1700 meters or so, but that too may have been a mixture of luck and numbers (when you have three or four tanks, and sometimes more, firing back at you somebody is bound to get lucky given enough time).

So I decided to modify my tactics. The first thing was to bring my 81mm mortar batteries into action as quickly as possible. This got the Sov tanks buttoned up, making it harder for them to spot. Probably zapped a few crewmen too, as it seemed to cause some of them to break. Seemed to clean the infantry riders off their backs too.

Then, only after my mortar barrage was underway and showing effects, did I bring the Hornissen forward to hulldown positions using Shoot 'n' Scoot so as to expose them for the minimum amount of time. I've gotten two kills with them, including a KV, and haven't lost one yet. It really isn't shooting fish in a barrel the way I thought it would be, but it seems to have caused the Sov tanks, or at least some of them, to hesitate and mill around. So at least it has stalled the attack for several precious turns. smile.gif I just wish I were getting more kills. :(

I find myself wishing I had about three more mortar batteries. The one I've got has spent all its ammo.

Might be interesting to fight this scenario with Elephants instead of Hornissen...

Michael

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Some feedback for Andreas on Gefechtsaufklaerung (sp? :rolleyes: )

I enjoyed this small scenario, probably because I too am a 'byte battle' fan. I love a 30 minute (in real time) battle and enjoy the simplicity of a finite number of units. Gf-rung delivers, and I got beat, 35-65 in my first attempt. (As Axis attacker vs AI) but I have to believe...there's got to be a way...!.

I certainly didn't think it's too easy; the game mechanics chopped the scenario even shorter than 15 turns; I got the morale enforced cease fire cut off I believe about turn 12. I inflicted 44 casualties and suffered 4. I was just getting ready to send in the 'student body right' play when the battle ended.

Well drawn map, good placement of Soviets, great historical framework, and a serious challenge in 15 turns (or 12!). I like the paradox--you can beat on the soviets w/ firepower and arty-but can you get up the hill in time?

Very replayable too. Keep up the good work in small packages!

Now, BTS, about the early ceasefire, can I turn that option off??? :confused:

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Hey Mike,

Re HORNET's NEST

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IIRC, in the actual engagement that this scenario is based on Ernst's platoon of Hornets KO'd at least 8 of the attacking soviet tanks, losing one of their number as a total loss and having another damaged. The support from the Hornets allowed the infantry to hold and repel the attack. The Russians were quite unhappy to encounter this new tank destroyer.

In playtesting we saw wins on both sides for this one, but a shoot and scoot tactic was definitely necessary for the Hornets. Leaving them hull down seemed to attract targeting lines left and right. We added the second platoon of Hornets and they seemed to arrive and turn the tide just at the right time.

Good luck!

Jeff

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Originally posted by jwxspoon:

...a shoot and scoot tactic was definitely necessary for the Hornets. Leaving them hull down seemed to attract targeting lines left and right.

No ****! :D

As I posted above, I was surprised at first at the quick and accurate gunnery by the Sov tanks.

We added the second platoon of Hornets and they seemed to arrive and turn the tide just at the right time.
Oh good! I am definitely looking forward to that part.

:D

Thanks for a really good scenario, Jeff. I had thought of doing a fictional one on the Citadel map that would be somewhat along the same lines, and may yet, but I need to figure out how to get the map oriented to suit what I have in mind (I've never designed a scenario before, so all this stuff is new to me).

Michael

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Great game, but mixed reviews so far from my point of view on the CD scenarios. I loved Golzow and Borisovka Station - very challenging and exciting! Spooky when a German tank-killer plane shows up in B. Station and starts shooting up my T-34's! But I always play the Soviet side, and some of the setups seem so blatantly unbalanced from the start (with heavy German tanks positiond overlooking spawn points, exit routes or objectives)so as to be laughable. I just alt-a out of them....But these are mere quibbles, and CMBO is wonderfully good game. All concerned deserve congratulations. I'm sure the scenario designers out there will fill in any gaps.

Cheers,

Solo

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Hornet's Nest:

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Shoot and scoot is a definite must as I lost all but one doing hunt/hull down. That one (elite rated, officer?) ended up out of ammo. The German infantry was hardly touched due to the 75 mm gun on the far right and the mgs on the hill next to the Nashorn's ridge....

Had me wondering what I was doing wrong but on thinking..shoot and scoot a definite better tactic for their relative thin skins, thought they did exact a terrible price on the Red vehicles..

[ September 29, 2002, 10:35 PM: Message edited by: pathfinder ]

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Andreas,

one thing I particularly like about all your scens on the CD (or at least, the ones I've seen so far...) is the indication in the general briefing about which side to play, and tips on balancing vs the AI or a better opponent. Saves a lot of frustration and false starts.

As a matter of fact, I find your briefings to be very good all round. (and the scens themselves of course ... its just that I was talking about the briefings ... ;) )

All Designers,

This is something I've mentioned to the designers of the ROWII scens: don't be afraid to use landmarks - the more the merrier as far as I'm concerned smile.gif

Regards

JonS

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Originally posted by pathfinder:

...shoot and scoot a definite better tactic for their relative thin skins, thought they did exact a terrible price on the Red vehicles..

I've mostly been keeping my guys alive with S&S okay. My big gripe is that they can't seem to hit the broad side of a barn. After 12 turns they've killed exactly two tanks. That may just be bad luck, but I had hoped for better performance out of them.

Still, they may be doing the necessary job of keeping the Sovs at bay. Every time one of my guys pops up, several tanks halt to return fire. That means they aren't advancing. And between getting popped at by my Hornets and the early mortar attacks, the tank riding infantry has decided that it was healthier to hoof it. That means they will either be late to the party or get there tired, either of which would be good news.

Michael

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Andrew Hedges

In comment to the Gefechtsaufklaerung

thread....I keep getting toasted by the damn commies in that one. With all the firepower that I have laid on you would think they would have cracked but noooo. Well I am new to this game so that must be why...yea thats the ticket.

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Borisovka Station:

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Me being a lousy handler of infantry in the attack, I took the Germans and crossed my fingers. I about had to change my depends when the rocket barrage hit, luck enough it only lasted 1 turn! Kinda tense as the AT guns got picked off 1 by 1... then the last 2 T-34s and lone SU-122 hit the left edge of town with a few infantry....I tried maneuvering 2 infantry squads from the a building to the tobbacco factory, which they did but the SU-122 pasted one and it routed (to return later). The squad that stayed back assulted and took out one T-34 while the last 1 was KO'd by a strafing plane.

Good scenario!

BTW Unt Faustle is the squad leader of the squad that took out the T-34. They did that while under AI control. not mine... Unfortunately Unt Faustele didn't survive his wounds from the assult...

[ September 29, 2002, 11:52 PM: Message edited by: pathfinder ]

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SPOILERS

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Hi, I played the Cemetary Hill scenario four times (yeah, I'm obsessed) and the last time I managed "only" a tactical defeat as the germans: my best result. :mad: I had the 75mm gun and the two mg-34 in the woods providing covering fire for my recon platoon and the 3 skd-222 and the spw-251-10 advancing right in the middle. Lot's of heavy infantry fire came in immediately and the recon platoon fell back in disarray with heavy casualties. Meanwhile, I had the other recon platoon making a flanking maneuver to the far right and it worked. it wiped out the mortars and the guns (since it was the fourth time I played, the free to deploy option was on). Then I decided on the main attack after my mg-34 and my armored units had softened up the defenders in the central part of the town. The pionners made good progress at first under the cover of smoke. But when they came close to the first demolished house (I had the 75mm gun destroy many houses) a maxim MG that I thought dead (1 men left) opened up for the far left and pinned down my men. Then all hell broke loose and the one AFV left alive (2 other were destroyed and one had it's gun torn off) withdrew. The MG-34's were not enough to provide effective suppression and the russian infantry massacred my pioners in view of their objective (the trench). Meanwhile, the platoon doing the flanking maneuver managed to get into the first building but soon found itself unable to advance (too small) and that was it.

Next time I will do the following, the AFV's will keep some distance and supress the infantry in the middle of the town. The Mg-34 will suppress the same area. The two recon platoon will BOTH be providing supressive fire in addition to the vehicules, the 75mm gun and the MG's. After a 5-6 turns of hellish fire, I will lay smoke with the 75mm gun to the left and right of an assault corridor smack in the middle. The pioners will then proceed with an assault that will hopefully overwhelm the defenders already pinned down and supressed by unrelenting heavy fire. I think the key is: win the firepower battle then insert the infantry. I just wasn't laying enough supressive firepower and was splitting my force for no benefit. Concentration of firepower, isolation of an assault corridor with smoke then an assault. I hope it works. :rolleyes:

[ September 30, 2002, 03:00 AM: Message edited by: antawar ]

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Three words, Antawar: Avoid the middle.

I found in Cemetery Hill (against the AI), that a frontal attack is very costly, as it puts you in range and LOS of the majority of the Russian units. If you attack one of the flanks (I chose the right) and put all of your main effort there, you'll be able to move as far as the Russian trenches, then turn 90 degrees and advance down the trenchline/road axis and take out the enemy positions a few at a time. This way you're only facing the wrath of a few of his units at a time. You might still want a small force to stay in the woods directly opposite the front of the Russian lines to pin down any reinforcements he sends towards your flanking troops, however.

It's just too hard (impossible) to suppress enough enemy units at once to make a frontal assault possible in this scenario, so it's not even worth trying.

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I got frustrated very quickly with Borisovka. Why? I am terrible and trying to manuever my tanks without the never ending @!#$@!# traffic jam, pile up, loss of contact. Then as soon as I bring a tank up to hull down, bang, it's dead. Then the next one dead. Screw it, I quit.

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Mannhein tanker, you're right.. it's impossible to suppress enough soviets to reach the line to make a frontal assault even supported by meager smoke. I tried my plan. Another disaster. I'll go with my first idea all along... and yours.. which is a flanking maneuver with the tanks, one platoon of recon and the pioners on the right.

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Winning cemetary hill as the germans is impossible.. I tried your stratedy mannhein .. it failed like all the other plans.. your win was probably a stroke of luck.. this scenario is too difficult.. the game is so much more difficult I think it will hit casual players so hard they will not want to play it again. This is a game for grogs and professionnal military officers. Maybe I'm too dumb to play it or do not want to invest time in learning the "art" id war.. some have it.. some don't..

Totally frustrated armchair officer

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Originally posted by antawar:

Winning cemetary hill as the germans is impossible.. I tried your stratedy mannhein .. it failed like all the other plans.. your win was probably a stroke of luck.. this scenario is too difficult.. the game is so much more difficult I think it will hit casual players so hard they will not want to play it again. This is a game for grogs and professionnal military officers. Maybe I'm too dumb to play it or do not want to invest time in learning the "art" id war.. some have it.. some don't..

Totally frustrated armchair officer

Hmm, I got a minor first time I tested it. Which is very close to the final version, IIRC. It is not impossible, you just have to use good tactics.

WWB

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I played Night Raid yestreday. As reccomended in the briefing, I played the Russkis against the Germans as AI.

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I found it pretty easy, and I'm a crap player. Part of it was luck. I sneaked my troops all the way up to the wire simultaneously in three places, and was in the trenches before the Germans knew what was going on. The flamethrowers caused some panic, and a couple of squads routed off the map, but because the ranges were so close, I was onto the FT crews and bitch-slapping them to death after a round or two.

I never encountered the MG bunker. Didn't even know it was there until the surrender map. My route in just never came near it.

Never had to use my tanks and got a total victory in 9 rounds. I was amazed by how few defenders there were. I guess most of the points had been spent on mines, which incidnetally caused me zero casualties, except for the routed squads who ran straight through them!

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Originally posted by antawar:

Winning cemetary hill as the germans is impossible..

Well...go figure.

I am getting my ass beat routinely in Quick Battles where I have to attack. Over and over again I loose. Doesn't matter what side I play.

But on this scenerio, I scored a major victory.

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