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  1. Like
    BletchleyGeek got a reaction from IanL in Fire and Rubble   
    For @BFCElvis with love
  2. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek reacted to Cobetco in Fire and Rubble   
    the name of this scenario is burned into by brain, I know it well. and I love it in the worst sort of way. I cannot wait to drive myself crazy again in something that is in the same spirit.
  3. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek reacted to Ithikial_AU in Fire and Rubble   
    What can I say without breaking my NDA. Mmmm.... 
    It's a small and highly experimental battle/situation. Certainly not 'tournament friendly'. If you were the commander launching this kind of action in real life I'd guess you'd likely be shot by your own troops. Sort of 'Hollywood flair' mixed with 'Kiwi Soldiers' kind of difficulty. At least based on testing results. I even lost playing my own work as the defenders.
    If you think this experimental idea is garbage, rest assured there's plenty of other more traditional thinking man's CM scenarios to get your teeth into with this module.
  4. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek reacted to George MC in Ost Front Books   
    What @BletchleyGeeksaid  But Prokhorovka whilst a pivotal moment on the southern sector was not the decisive material victory claimed by the Soviets. The Soviet anti- tank trench that had stalled LSSAH - that many of Rotmistrovs tanks drove into or veered away from was a key factor. 
    This is one of Dr Ben Wheatly's studies and covers the AT trench that was a pivotal part of the fighting at Prokhorovka in LSSAH sector. NOTE: I first came across this AT trench mention in v.Ribbentrop's account vividly describes the attack in this sector. Tanks from his zug were some of the few KOd in LSSAH sector. I did an old CMBB scenario called 'Born Again' and it had the AT trench in it. Note dropbox link is a short term transfer.
    overall though German losses in the Kursk offensive - especially in men - were serious and losses that would increasingly become harder to replace with quality reinforcements and experienced officers and NCOs. But as importantly it effectively turned the strategic initiative over to the Soviets. 
  5. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek got a reaction from George MC in Ost Front Books   
    Maybe he had a bad day... But seriously, the Allies had a lot of trouble at their mid-level of command (battalion, regiment) for several reasons. Prokhorovka is what happens when mid level officers reinforce failure and higher level officers do not rectify as feedback on decisions comes up the command chain.
  6. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek got a reaction from George MC in Ost Front Books   
    Yep, Prokhorovka was a defensive battle where the German Army did very well. And a complete dog breakfast for the Red Army. It's remarkable because of the exchange ratio and the cover up effort.
  7. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek got a reaction from George MC in Ost Front Books   
    To a great extent yes. Kursk was bad business as it both blunted the edge of the German Army and put most of its strength in an awkward place to respond to incoming Soviet offensives. The real grind came along the long road to the Third Winter.
    German losses at Kursk were not catastrophic but serious. Especially in comparison with had been achieved in 1941 and 1942 with similar concentrations of force.
  8. Like
    BletchleyGeek got a reaction from Rice in CM Cold War - Beta AAR - NO The_Capt or Bil   
    All US Scout sections can act as forward observers for artillery, Bill highlighted this in the AAR as an important factor when selecting forces.
    Since he hasn't really mentioned that he is relying on further arty fires in the last update, I assume Bil doesn't consider those  to be an important part of his plan any more.
  9. Like
    BletchleyGeek got a reaction from Bil Hardenberger in U.S. Thread - CM Cold War - BETA AAR - Battle of Dolbach Heights 1980   
    Beautiful report @Bil Hardenberger, greatly appreciate the vignettes that illustrate the in game events... it's great to see some combined arms action (even if some of that was blue on blue!).
  10. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek reacted to Bil Hardenberger in U.S. Thread - CM Cold War - BETA AAR - Battle of Dolbach Heights 1980   
    The Nineteenth & Twentieth Minutes
    “The important thing in strategy is to suppress the enemy's useful actions but allow his useless actions”
    A Book of Five Rings - Miyomoto Musashi

    Starting to get HOT... this is a long one.. so buckle up!!  
    These two minutes of action unfold a lot of important developments for this battle.  On my right, 2nd Platoon/s tanks made it to the low ground that composes the Short Option...

    ...one of them gets a spot on Warren's star killer BMP-1P in the treeline across the map and after some back and forth missed shots it finally lands one... damn fine shooting for a vanilla M-60A1 on the move.

    One of 3rd Platoon's M-150s spots and fires at the T-64A that was beaten up by 1st Platoon's Tank Section 2 last turn (and again in these turns) as it withdrew through the woods into the open ground... the M-150 does hit with its TOW.. but the T-64 shrugged off even that blow.  However.. I would be surprised if any of Warren'e two surviving T-64As have a working gun now.  

    On my left Warren is indeed up to something, the action was preceded by an artillery strike on the the woods in this area.  Sadly the only casualty was the Scout team that was calling in my Cluster mission... isn't that the way it always works?

    ...initially three BMP-1s and two T-62s broke cover.

    The 2nd Platoon leader team fired a Dragon at one of the BMPs.. which missed long.

    The BMP then oriented on the 2nd platoon Leader's M113, which was caught too far forward and put one gun round through it's front armor... killing the vehicle and it's crew.

    After reloading, 2nd PL's Dragon gunner took aim at the T-62 traveling with the BMP and succeeded in killing it.  FYI, the Dragon firing animation is still a work in progress, so I am keeping zoomed out from it.  Hopefully losing this tank will make Warren pause or change his tack towards my Scout teams.

    Remember that my units on my far left were originally meant as a decoy.. and hopefully his attack will orient itself on them and away from my main combat power. 
    By the end of the twentieth minute there were five T-62s (including the dead one) and five BMP-1s identified... so I think at least two Platoons of tanks and two platoons of BMPs.  I suspect these BMPs do not contain any infantry, so this is probably meant as an armored raid into my rear.  That's how I see it at this point in the game anyway.

    I have started moving 1st Platoon's Tank Section 1 across the map to hopefully hit his attacking force in the flank, or better.. the rear.  It'll take a few minutes for them to get into a position where they can begin hunting.

    Back on my right, Warren has pushed at least one T-62 forward to blunt my tanks coming up the stream route.  Spotted by the same M-60A1 that just took out the BMP, with this result:

    So to recap... if Warren pushes towards my Scout teams on my far left.. then that suits me.  It's less fire power for him to devote to blunting my tank movement on my right. 

    My scouts and M-150s (which are withdrawing as fast as they can) will transition into a Delay operation now.
    Final bit of action... on my right, 1st Platoon's 2nd Tank Section (tank 1/7) took a penetrating hit from the T-64B across the valley (should be the final undamaged T-64 on the map).  The M-60 suffers one casualty and minor damage.  Damn... well hopefully I can pull it out of the line before it gets hit again.

  11. Like
    BletchleyGeek reacted to IICptMillerII in CM Cold War - Beta AAR - NO The_Capt or Bil   
    Well, I think the most recent turn The_Capt posted was a bit anticlimactic. Bil is certainly still in the fight! I still think this will all come down to a decisive engagement. They have traded blows trying to shape the battlefield, now one of them needs to capitalize on that and deliver the decisive punch. 
  12. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek reacted to The_Capt in CM Cold War - Beta AAR - Soviet Thread - Glorious Soviet Victory at Small German Town 1980   
    Glorious March to Victory Post # 9 - "7th Outing Stretching" (19-20)
    Ok, when I last left you, we had taken out one M60 and had a bead on the second...and of course it missed:

    Well it wouldn't be a CM game if the gods of war were not against me.
    Anyway  Not much really happens more this turn as we continue to position:

    A shot on my left flank where I thought Bil was going to keep pushing (more on this later):

    My heavy mortars are finally landing along that ridge, just as my teeth are starting push up the ridge, I hope they are causing someone pain.

    So by end turn it all looks good, I am solidifying the position in the town.  Forces are advancing up the ridge unmolested  and I am pretty confident of my cover on Bil's axis of advance....and then I noticed this:

    So that is a TOW missile streaking towards one of my few remaining T64s....
    Turn 20.
      Well it would not be a CM game if the gods of war were not with me:

    The basic TOW (the M901s are firing ITOW) did not penetrate my T64 but did immobilize it.  The good news is that in its current position it can still cover the ridgeline...so lemonade!  (Oh, check out the interface, it is really starting to shape up)
    Ok, so turn 20 and mid-game...and Bil is getting weird:

    It looks like he is hooking that tank platoon towards the town...which kinda left me scratching my head a bit.  For the rest of the turn we traded a lot of steel across the valley (you can see that little BMP-that-could's last AT 3 streaking at those M60s...and of course it missed).  Besides me bagging a hapless M113 on the ridge, most of the rest of the turn is positioning:

    You can see here that my teeth are up out of that tree line and are ready to start fanning out, I am about as good a position as I can get in the town as that second dismounted infl platoon has managed to get into the objective zone pretty much unmolested.  So time for a mid-game assessment:

    So basically, I was worried that Bil was going to push a tank platoon, or more into A0.  This would have been very bad for me, as from that position they can  1) pound the town unmolested and 2) make life for my Teeth miserable as I would have to watch their back and front.  Instead Bil looks like he is taking A1 route, which is really kind of strange but I am sure there is a clever ploy here somewhere.  A1 is semi-covered.  My screen S1 cannot see it until it is right in the town, but S2 will get some clean shots.  I also repositioned both infantry and 2 x T62s to cover this approach.  So basically, I am not sure what Bil is hoping to do with 3 x M60s in closing terrain here.  My next biggest concern is him making a hard push on A2 with that second tank platoon.  I also have infantry and a single T62 in the town on this route but S1 can cover it very well.  A2 has more cover if he uses the wood line but again we are talking almost entirely tanks trying to take a built up area.  
    If you look on the bottom left there is that worried looking blue guy, that is scouts and APCs that appear to be lining up for some sort of woods push but between my Teeth and that little det of recon, I am pretty sure I can keep them busy.  Again keeping in mind there is probably another troop of armor up on that ridge somewhere. 
    So here at mid-game, I expect Bil to use whatever is left of his arty (which still has DPICM) to pound the town in a hope all my infantry die so he can drive in with tanks and few scouts.  I have laid down two arty lines perpendicular to A2 approach but they are around 15mins out.  I have spread my infantry out on ground floors, mostly hiding to weather the arty and will keep my screens S1 and S2 up to make life difficult in the approach.  
    My Teeth are going to push towards those scouts and APCs, but I always have the option to swing them towards A2 if Bil makes a push.  Bils dilemma right now is that he cannot seem to get enough combat power into the town and cover my Teeth at the same time...let's see how long we can keep it up.
  13. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek reacted to Bil Hardenberger in U.S. Thread - CM Cold War - BETA AAR - Battle of Dolbach Heights 1980   
    The Eighteenth Minute - Relearning Old Lessons
    “Lost in a blurred confusion of yells and groans... down, and down, and down, he sank and drowned, bleeding to death. The counter-attack had failed.”
    Siegfried Sassoon
    I seem to be relearning the same old lessons over and over again.  I had my 2nd Platoon tanks driving through the open to get to the low ground for the Short Option… the lead M-60A1 was spotted by both the T-64B and the BMP-1P across the map, and after exchanging fire with them, the BMP (of course) hit…

    …at least the smoke from the burning tank should mask two of the three tanks which are following.  They are too far forward to reverse and use a covered route, so pedal to the metal boys!
    Lesson learned.. again.
    The 2nd Platoon tanks that are already on this “open route” will continue as fast as possible behind the burning and smoking wreck of their comrade… the tank that hasn’t broken cover yet will remain and take a safer route. 
    3rd Platoon will also be taking a safer route.  Details next turn.

    1st Platoon Tank Section 2 moved forward slightly and was able to take the T-64A in the blocking position tree line under fire...

    ...actually got a couple hits, but alas, no penetrations.  However this tank did start to withdraw from the line.  By the way, this was the final undamaged T-64A... but these things are very hard to kill.

  14. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek reacted to Artkin in Master TOE (1944)- 5th Panzer Division, 5th Guards Tank Corps   
    In anticipation of the upcoming module I have given more luv to CMRT lately. 
    I have created what the 5th Panzer Division should have looked like in September of 1944. It isn't perfect but it should be close with an exception to armored cars. Not counting those. 
    The formation - Commanded by General of the Panzer Troops Karl Decker - has around 6,000 front-line personnel, over 210 tanks before the compliment of 40+ King Tigers attached from the 103rd SS Panzer Bn. Hundreds of apcs and trucks. Commanders are named for the most part. One of my sources had names and dates for higher formation commanders. Everything was pretty much drop into place, BF's TOE work is impeccable.
    A couple notes: 1/116 Artillery 3 Battery should be hummels, and 103rd SS Panzer should be SS. Both of which will be corrected with F&R. I wasn't 100% sure on the flak batteries. I tried my best ppl!

    1. http://www.lexikon-der-wehrmacht.de/Gliederungen/Panzerdivisionen/5PD.htm
    2. http://www.lexikon-der-wehrmacht.de/Gliederungen/Panzerdivisionen/Staerkenachweise/5PD19449.htm
    3. https://www.ibiblio.org/hyperwar/Germany/HB/HB-2.html
    4. http://users.skynet.be/niemacks_place/OOB/Heer/Panzer Formations/Panzer Divisions/5 Panzer OOB-5.htm
    Source 1-2 need to be translated through google translate but are essentially gold mines for TOE information. They contain commander names, reports on manpower, hardware etc. Source 2 is specifically September of 1944.
    Source 3 refer to section [II-47] and Figure. 62.
    Source 4 is excellent for CM terms.
    In addition, I have also modeled parts of the 5th Guards Tank Army. Specifically the 3rd Guards Tank Corps commanded by Major-General Ivan Vovchenko and the 5th Guards Tank Army Troops.
    I have not measured the size of this formation but I imagine it is even larger. Actually it was so large I opted to only design half of the corps: One motorized infantry brigade and one tank brigade out of four total (Three armored brigades, one motorized) are included. Also included are the full corps assets. Finding TOE information for guards units seemed kind of difficult. I also designed this a little earlier so I will have to dig up my sources.

    1. https://www.flamesofwar.com/Default.aspx?tabid=102&art_id=1076
    ... yeah as I remember more I will post them. Theyre hard to come by and hard to dig through my history to find.
    The TOE's are in a master file, similar to a master unit file for a campaign. Enjoy!
    File is here: https://gofile.io/d/yOp7Mp
  15. Like
    BletchleyGeek got a reaction from Pete Wenman in CM Cold War - Beta AAR - NO The_Capt or Bil   
    Cheers @Pete Wenman
    From Bil's last post it sounds he's getting second thoughts about his maneuver.
  16. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek reacted to Pete Wenman in CM Cold War - Beta AAR - NO The_Capt or Bil   
    Just as a teaser then (given that's what these AAR are all about)

    This is from an in game scenario, so will be available for all to enjoy
    Yes he is, and there is not much cover on the slope. His only other option would have been down through the wooded area, with the risks inherent with that.
    Warren was forced through a bottleneck earlier in the game and now it is Bil's turn.
  17. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek reacted to Bil Hardenberger in U.S. Thread - CM Cold War - BETA AAR - Battle of Dolbach Heights 1980   
    The Fifteenth through Seventeenth Minutes
    “I would rather you made your appraisal after seeing what the enemy does, since it is certain that, angered and outraged, he will soon launch a determined counterattack."
    Isoroku Yamamoto
    The fifteenth minute saw the loss of another M-150.. I swear the track of that ATGM fired from the BMP-1P... it's like magic the way it hugs the ground comes over the top of the hill and hits him in the lower hull.. must be a crack gunner!  Pretty sure I was hull-down to that BMP and T-64B too.  C'est la guerre. 

    Pushing on... 
    So over the next few turns Warren, who has finally figured out that the central approach is masked from my view, has been pushing his T-62 Company and some BMPs far forward...

    ...is he planning on defending the town?  Pushing into my rear area?  If the latter.. then I have no defense.  Just don't have the combat power available to fight off a determined push. 
    What to do.. what to do... well first of all, I need to confirm one or the other.  If I need to react and push some support units over towards my M-60s for protection then so be it, but I plan to continue my movement with the tanks.  That, hopefully, will force him to redeploy the assets in the center, maybe weaken any attack into my rear area.
    In the above image.. note the contact icon (BMP) which Warren has pushed forward... very close to one of my Dragon teams.  Bad news.. the visibility here is very dodgy and it'll be tough to get eyes on that BMP unless it moves forward.  I am pretty sure this is one of his remaining BMP-1P's that I lost sight of a few turns ago.  Probably followed up by the BRM-1.

  18. Like
    BletchleyGeek got a reaction from CaptainTheDark in CM Cold War - Beta AAR - NO The_Capt or Bil   
    That's indeed the most distant kill I have heard of in this game.
    Correct me if I am wrong, but Bill is coming down a forward slope with his armour right? That's a precarious battle position.
    But Warren seems also to be happy just with detaching a platoon off his main effort to deal with Bill's attack, rather than seeking numeric advantage.
    Still eating popcorn, and not updating my probability of success estimates
  19. Like
  20. Upvote
  21. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek reacted to AlanSA in Pre-orders for Fire and Rubble are now open!!   
    Pretty sure their last release was on a Friday heading into a weekend....
  22. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek reacted to The_Capt in CM Cold War - Beta AAR - Soviet Thread - Glorious Soviet Victory at Small German Town 1980   
    March to Glorious Victory Post #8 - Riddles in the Dark (Turn 18)
    Well only a single turn to report, again apologies but we are kinda busy.  I am new to the whole game development thing but I believe it is call "the crunch", so named I believe for the sound our bones make when Steve swings his bat if we fail to meet deadlines.  Regardless, the war continues:

    So my push up the center continues, I am just getting my infantry forward to sweep those woods, particularly on the right because I am starting to see movement.  I  couple M113s and at least one M150 are shuffling around up there, I expect Bil has caught on to the fact that the bulk of my combat power is at his midriff.    I am also going to push those recon assets on my far right forward to start seeing if I can't bag a few of his scout teams.  I am worried about armor on that ridge, as I still see a couple ? icons but if I know Bil he will hold them back.  My bet is that Bil is going to try and bottle my forces up coming out of that treeline.  In other news, my fire mission is finally starting to fall on that treeline which may provide some cover.  I have to admit that I have not used arty well in this game.  Part of the problem is I agreed to EW for the Blue side...never do this, as it means really long spotter-wait times. 
    On the upside I still have good Eyes, so I know Bil can't get too aggressive up there.  Things were moving apace when suddenly:

    Well looky here!  That frisky old mule looks like he has decided to try to change the shape of the battle.  So that is the lead tank of an M60 platoon that Bil [aside:  I have known the guy for almost 20 years and I still have no idea why he uses only one "l" in his first name...the human heart is truly a mystery] is pushing on my far left.  Bold move.  If he can get armor up into that far treeline on my left he could theoretically make life difficult for the center push...but he has to get there first:

    Here the Eyes on my right are kicking in.  Both T64s and that lone BMP (the one who has killed at least one M150) have got clear eyes on Bil's route:

    Ouch, that was the BMP btw:

    So here you can see the situation better.  At the end of the turn there is a 125mm sabot round coming at that second M60, the other T64 and BMP are reloading.  In the town I am moving 2 x T62s around the village to get them covering that approach, the third is covering the village on the other side.  I am going to keep pushing the center but now have a BMP and a T-62 taking positions to reinforce the cover on that far right flank.  I am also continuing to push dismounted infantry into the objective, going to spread them out and cover any approaches from the wood line.  Next 120 seconds are going to be very interesting, stay tuned.
  23. Like
    BletchleyGeek reacted to nox_plague in Pre-orders for Fire and Rubble are now open!!   
    I've pre-ordered F&R and cannot wait  CM:BB was my first CM game (at 15 years old) and served as my introduction to combat sims and/or war-games.  I haven't played in years and kinda forgot about the games, but Covid gave me time to dig through all old favorites and I remembered CM.  Glad to see it's still in such active development.
    Sorry, this is a bit off topic, but I feel like folks here need a bit of an update on Steam.
    Steam is the largest PC game distribution platform and marketplace.  Steam was released in 2004 as part of Valve's Half Life 2 release.  I have had it since then and I have over 400 games on Steam.  I also use GOG Galaxy which has better support for classic games, including CM1 games BO, BB, and AK.  
    Steam manages updates.  Everyday I have 3-5 game updates that download in the background.  You have controls to tell it when you want updates to download/be applied etc.
    Steam provides cloud saves (mutli-platform support for saves too) so I can pick up right where I left off on my laptop from my desktop while I'm traveling.
    Steam provides a social networking and multiplayer frameworks so developers can tap into that for multiplayer matchmaking.  It could make it easier to find CM online opponents and I can only imagine how using cloud saves with PBEM it could make the experience SO MUCH BETTER!  Any friends that I have that game we pretty much all meet up and organize stuff on Steam, however for voice chat we tend to prefer Discord (Does CM have a Discord server yet?)
    Steam provides rich community mod frameworks and modding warehouse.  Instead of having to manage Z folders, I can find a mod on Steam and immediately "install" it and use it in a game -with one click, and with a fancy UI to manage which mods I want on or off when I start a game.  No filesystem management required.  No need to worry about mod websites going down. It's all hosted by Steam / Valve.  If a modder updates the mod it will auto-update just like game updates, so mod updates are managed seamlessly in the background.
    Steam makes it easy to backup games and to migrate games between hard drives. A personal favorite of mine, since I like upgrading my NVME SSDs and I dislike having to uninstall CM and reinstall it and going through support for activation.
    Steam is cross-platform.  I'm using it on my MacBook Pro right now.  From what I can tell, CM and Slitherine are only enabling Windows on Steam currently.
    All of this is to say, from the end user/customer experience of Steam is amazing.  I do not know about the Developer/backend Steam experience.  I don't know if those Frameworks have good API and code samples to build from.  I don't know what Steam's sales cut is.  I don't know how the Steam approval process works or if they'd want German military insignias modified.  For a small developer like Battlefront Steam may not make sense.  I have no insight into the cons.
    If Battlefront does decide to adopt Steam, I recommend really taking the time to utilize the modding, matchmaking, cloud saving, Multiplatform, and updating experiences, because they are pretty awesome for your users.
  24. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek reacted to benpark in U.S. Thread - CM Cold War - BETA AAR - Battle of Dolbach Heights 1980   
    There is an outstanding suggestion I made a year or so ago for the ability to save variable set-ups that would cover things like this (and for not knowing what will be faced against the AI).
    Not sure if it will ever get picked up, but it would be another good tool to have.
  25. Upvote
    BletchleyGeek reacted to Badger73 in U.S. Thread - CM Cold War - BETA AAR - Battle of Dolbach Heights 1980   
    The M60A1 & M60A2 had a stereoscopic rangefinder which uses two eyepieces and relies on the tank commander to spin a range wheel until the two images merge into a single picture.  When you had a sharp single image, it gave you the range to the target in meters and mechanically adjusted the gunner's sights to that range.  The TC then gave the fire command (in this case 1,500 meters) as, "Range one five hundred meters.  Fire!".
    To save time and insure first round fired, veteran tank commanders and their gunners would pre-set the rangefinder to a "battlesight" range; either 1200 or 1600 meters depending on SOP.  As soon as the gunner "Identified" the target in his sights, the TC fire command would be an immediate, "Battlesight, fire!".  The gunner would check for "Burst on Target", re-aim to the point of impact and fire again until TC declared, "Target destroyed."
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