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  1. I've done two Comic AARs, and always dreaded the idea of work involved in doing a classic one. Until I discovered just how much work the CAARs were. Combined with all the AARs I've read here already trying to improve my tactical knowledge and skills, made me really want to give this standard format AAR a try. The battle is a 45 minute duration attack by me on a German opponent in PBEM. My partner doesn't participate in the BF forums so this AAR will not be mirrored from the German perspective. I am a graphics dilettante compared to Bil Hardenberger. I recommend you read his AARs, and visit his blog. His AARs were to me highly educational as well as inspirational. The concepts of planning, reconnaissance, and how to present it to readers in graphic format are all things I've learned from reading them. By no means can I approach his tactical or graphical skill but I hope you will still find this enjoyable to read and contribute to the thread.
  2. Good day everyone. Today I will be playing through the 'Abu Susah' scenario of CMSF2. The mission is simple - my two Stryker rifle platoons must bypass the village of Abu Susah, known to be held by hostile irregulars, and destroy any enemy anti-tank weapons. I have 45 minutes to accomplish my task. I know little about my enemy, only that Abu Susah is home to an infamous radicalised madrassa and that there are 'many bad men' with 'many weapons'. The briefing warns me of RPGs and ATGMs. There could also be recoilless rifles. As I am facing irregulars I will also have to be on the lookout for IEDs covering the roads and other chokepoints. Civilian density is moderate, so I will have to be vigilant. The enemy could be hiding in plain sight. The AO is about 900 x 600m across. Abu Susah sits roughly in the centre, north of my start line and stretches to the west, nestling in some rolling hills and straddling a crossroads. The ground is very dry and the weather is hazy and warm, with a light wind blowing from the northeast. Sightlines are relatively open, the AO being dominated by the few multi-storey buildings dotted about the place. Atop hills to the northwest and northeast of my start line are some small farm buildings. Their elevation will provide me with vital observation posts over the AO and into part of the village. The highest building in the AO is a three-storey just on the eastern edge of the village, which I have dubbed the Savoy. The other high point of the AO is a two-storey atop a hill north of the village, which I have dubbed the Ritz. These buildings would make for excellent observation posts and good (if obvious) positions for heavy weapons. There are two routes that I could take to bypass the village. The first is the safest and most obvious route, a simple run along the eastern edge of the AO. This keeps the village at a relative arm's length. This route has two sticking points, these sheep pens and a ditch along the north-south road. The ditch has only three crossing points: one at my start line, one where it is bisected by the east-west road and one at the northern edge of the AO. The sheep pens constrict my manoeuvre space at the north-eastern edge of the AO, forcing me into a chokepoint and providing a position for the enemy. The ditch then forces me into another chokepoint at the crossing. The second route is less obvious but far riskier: a run along the western edge of the AO, along a dirt road that loops around Abu Susah to the North. This route takes me very close to the village and leads through a small hamlet or farm on the reverse slope of the hill in the northwest corner of the AO. An advance along this route would be exposed to fire from the village and would then have to fight through the hamlet/farm (if they are occupied). The one advantage this route provides is that it is far less obvious than the first. I command the 1st and 2nd Platoons of Alpha Company, 2nd Battalion, 25th Stryker Brigade Combat Team. My platoons are slightly understrength, lacking their weapons squads and I am short one Stryker, forcing my pair of platoon HQs to travel together. This will complicate command and control slightly. We are supported by two sections of 81mm mortars. My men are veterans and are all well-led and well-rested. I have three grenade machine gun equipped Strykers and four heavy machine gun equipped Strykers. All in all, a nice little combat package, with fire support that should be adequate for the mission. Right, analysis complete, now to put my force into action. My first move will be to fan out and get some observation posts up on the hills to the left and right of my start line.
  3. Celleno: The Final Battle The Mission Before us, lies the hill-top fortress of Celleno. This is the final objective of our campaign, and it looks to be the toughest one, yet. We did our best to conserve our fuel, ammo and manpower for this battle. We are ahead of the recce, and nearly blind. Now, night approaches and we must begin the assault. The Plan Phase 1: Establish observation points and direct the initial bombardment. Phase 2: Occupy the heights and establish a base of fire. Phase 3: Begin the combined assault on ALPHA. Phase 4: Mop up BRAVO and CHARLIE. The Forces Task Force 1 (Armoured): C Squadron (Major Chetty) Task Force 2 (Infantry): B Company (Major Jansen) Task Force 3 (Infantry): C Company (Major Ntsimango) Supports: 2 x Recce Troops, 2 x Forward Observers, 2 x Machinegun Sections
  4. I thought I'd try a little recap of my 2nd attempt at this map. The first did not go well and I decided to give it another go. Fresh of my success with 'Dagger Fight' which ended in a Total Victory when the computer surprisingly threw in the towel, I thought this would be a nice change of pace. First, the briefing: Generally, CM2 briefings have a lot of hidden clues. This one is vague and really once you start this mission you'll want to punch the intelligence officer. The map is anything but clear. Combined with the fact you have a Coy of tanks you know things are about to get spicy. The farm is merely one of many locations with ENY activity, so yes, it's one of those. The scenario 'ATGM Ambush' is good training for this mission. This is essentially the same thing on a much bigger scale. The map, and some general ideas about strategy, with a caveat: 1st Attempt: My original strategy was to dismount my mech inf platoon, get them up the hill and occupy the buildings circled in yellow. I did achieve this, but at quite high losses to one of the squads. I mistakenly - stupidly - thought I would have some arty assets later as there is an FO, and my plan was to get him in that building which could observe the map exit where there would no doubt be plenty of ENY units. I did not count on a couple of things: How hard it would be to dislodge the few infantry in that building, occupied by apparenlty the world's toughest ATGM crew. The whole northern portion of the map being lousy with ENY. Mutual support for ENY in this hilltop complex from the high ground to the N and NE. ATGMs as a close-support-weapon (devastating, and new to me) One syrian ATGM squad displaced about 80m to a nearby field and started pounding the building with missiles. I lost a whole squad to ATGM fire when the building collapsed, and the others only survived when I hid them deep in the complex, which rendered them ineffective. I rushed a bradley up the hill but left it's right flank just momentarily exposed and it got deaded by ATGM fire from the NE. I decided to push the tanks forward and they got so beat up mid-way through I decided to think about it and try again. No shame in admitting you get it wrong occasionally. If at first you don't succeed... I thought my general idea of clearing the nearby hilltop was fairly sound, especially if my inf had javelins (they did!) they could use against the Northern ATGM teams. I needed to be very careful to keep them in defilade once they were up there. I was really missing some LMG support too. They would have been very handy. v The 'suspicious activity' reported by the lead tank (as per the brief) is just out of the frame on the right, a small farm complex. Now, bit of a moan from me; I do not like missions that have your units starting in danger. The farm is ~250m away, which puts the lead elements easily in range even from RPG fire. Like most players I like to do a little 'walk' around the map at truppen level, you can see that at 3x magnification two of my M1s are easily visible at their start line from a rooftop just down the road: Starting T1 I sent my infantry up the hill, classic two up, one back formation with a Bradley watching over them. I was well used to CMBN where scrub and woodland usually held small units waiting along avenues of approach: My lead M1s immediately (and somewhat predictably) picked up targets in the farm complex and further north - ATGM teams - and engaged them effectively. Although potentially vulnerable in this position, I think they were generally out of harm's way and did not want to move them just yet. They also took out a lone sniper on the nearby hilltop that was near my infantry but had no LOS to them. More to come!
  5. The rematch! Central Italy in spring '44. I play ze Germans and Irish is the CW.
  6. Good morning/afternoon/evening everyone. This will be an AAR series, covering my playthrough of the US Army campaign of Shock Force 2: 'TF Thunder'. I briefly dipped my toe into this campaign in Shock Force 1, but only as far as the first mission. This will be my first proper playthrough of a Combat Mission campaign, and I'm sharing it all with you! So, without further ado, let's get into the campaign briefing. The ground invasion of Syria has begun. After a three-day-long aerial bombardment, NATO forces are pouring into the country from all sides; The US Army from the East, the British Army from the North and South, NATO forces from the North and the US Marines from the coast. I am commanding a battalion of Task Force Thunder, a Stryker Brigade reinforced with armoured units. I have under my command two Stryker rifle companies (A and C), an armoured company of M1A2 Abrams tanks (B), an armoured infantry company in Bradley IFVs (D) and an armoured engineer company also in Bradleys (E). This is a fast and powerful combat force, equipped with the best fighting equipment on Earth and manned by some of the best soldiers on Earth. And in the finest American tradition, the battalion is liberally supported by artillery and airpower. Our brigades mission is to slice Syria in half, striking from East to West along a route designated 'Route Lightning', with our limit of advance being the important Syrian city of Hims (also known as Homs). My enemy will initially consist of Syrian reservists and militia holding the border. These units are poorly trained, poorly led and poorly equipped. As we push into the interior of the country resistance will stiffen, varying from the still poorly equipped but slightly better led and trained regular units, to the elite, well-equipped units of the Republican Guards currently around Hims. Also, scattered throughout the country there will be pockets of paramilitary, special forces and other irregulars, many of which are well trained, motivated and equipped. There will be tough fighting ahead. Speed and force protection is the name of the game for this campaign. Our mission is to neatly snip Syria in half as quickly as possible, but our last objective is a tough urban target. Replacement of casualties and destroyed vehicles will not be happening. Taking too many casualties early on will make our mission exponentially more difficult. I will have to carefully balance aggression and caution to complete this campaign successfully. In the next instalment, we'll take on the first mission. Stay tuned!
  7. While Ian and I are sorting out some really disappointing challenges with our CMFI AAR - one I wish to complete regardless, I was swamped with a major project at work and of course now our friendly pandemic. He and I started a battle in CMBS to have something in the fire while we slowly got things going in R2V, and I wanted to try a different comic software. It’s a nice one that works on both my Mac and my IPad which allows for some added flexibility. I was going to post this after I finished another comic, but that one also ran into a snag with all files lost and I am underway making that from scratch. But then this happened... Blame him... In any case, CMBS and CMSF2 are the two game families that have no comic for them. This is an attempt to rectify that gross lack.
  8. My first CAAR (Comic After Action Report) was in the format of a DAR presented as a comic. To introduce some variety and also make this one a bit more like a comic, it will be presented less as an AAR and more as a story, following the actions and adventures of one man, a Russian soldier called Dmitry ("Dima") Ivanov. Of course this is also going to present the battles as well, so the AAR aspect is still included, just not the sole objective. Some of you wanted to hear more about Lt. Warner, Cpl. Dietrich, and Sgt. Hirsch from my first CAAR; they will be back in another CAAR. At the time of this one, Warner and his boys are in Normandy, and later, in Holland during Market-Garden. Once again, Kohlenklau is my partner in this, and I thank him for being a fun opponent in the battles and a patient friend in the delays doing these sometimes introduces.
  9. The long-delayed and heretofore illusory comic, Apache, is finally nearing completion. Like my previous CAARs (links below in my signature) this one shows something new, both in terms of the side being illustrated, as well as design concepts for the comic. I'll let you mull that over and see if you find them appropriate and intuitive. This CAAR was unusual in that it required substantial setup to provide useful and interesting material. Some of the lengthy pauses in development were cause by obstacles in story-telling that had to be worked out in a pleasing and realistic manner. The fault is mine - I never used the scenario editor for anything other than map-making, and Apache necessitated a foray into scenario design that illustrated (see what I did there?) that it takes practice and a LOT of effort to make workable scenarios. My respect for those volunteers who design them here is increased by an order of magnitude. We all owe them a debt of gratitude for enriching our experience in these games. Once again, the map is one of my own making, another 208m x 208m custom job with a beach and water for troops to come out of as they invade. Fortunately, my partner in this, once again the inestimable Kohlenklau, recognized that the map was too small with the beach and water and the need for some space to represent a landing, so he made alterations that greatly improved on my original work. Much as I'm fond of the idea of micro-maps (after all, these comics are called Micro-Battles) there comes a point where being able to spit in your enemy's eyes is just a tad too close. I hope you enjoy this effort. As always, comments and questions are welcome.
  10. Initial situation This AAR is being played using a custom scenario borrowing a map from one of the scenarios that will be in the final game. Bud and I replaced the forces with some specific choices to show off new formations and gear. It is now March 1945 the Germans have been pushed far to the North in Italy. The area is defended by some low experience Luftwaffe ground forces and very tough Gebirgsjaegers. The forces available to push the Germans back in this area are South African and Indian. A force of a squadron plus of tanks from 1 Battalion Pretoria Regiment of the 6th South African armour division and two companies of the 24th Battalion Sikh Regiment supported by the elements of 2nd Independent Field Squadron of Indian Engineers. The weather is clear but with the snow having recently melted the ground is wet. Comandant Litson climbed back into his tank reflecting on his first meeting with the CO of the infantry he was tasked with supporting. The whole thing went better than expected. Lt. Col Ram Singh spoke better English that he did. Turns out the Indian officer had spent years in England before the war. His concerns about communications problems were curtailed. While there might still be problems, he now felt that he and is 2IC could contact Lt. Col Ram Singh and his staff and they would be able to straightening things out. In fact, since they were not under a time crunch, they had spent a little time over tea. The Indians seemed genuinely pleased to be working with he and his men. He got the feeling that they had similar uncomfortable experiences in the past working with British officers. Comandant Litson, like everyone else, knew the war was in its final days but until hostilities actually ended his men were not out of danger. The best way to protect his men and those of his allies was to prevent the Germans from regrouping and causing havoc on their terms. This was the time for his men to take the fight into their control.
  11. To the Meuse! After weeks of heavy fighting, the state of the Kampfgruppe is dire. Infantry companies are at half strength, and the panthers are suffering from a lack of repair. The retaking of Stavelot proved to be a costly affair. American resistance has greatly strengthened since the start of the operation. Their men fight to the last, with new equipment that evens out the playing field. The time is now. The Kampfgruppe must break through to the Meuse now -- or lose the opportunity forever!
  12. While the cool guys get to play CMSF2 and tease us with their AARs, I couldn't resist and got myself some CMSF1 play too. Several months ago I tried doing English-based AAR (while I'm Russian, obviously) for my WITP AE campaign and I really liked doing it. But I don't have much time to play these days, so the AAR itself will get even less attention (sorry). Mission name: Rahadnak Valley Search. Difficulty: uhm.. Elite? I play as US Marines against @jackal263, who plays Syrians. My main goal is to have fun. And I cannot really enforce my opponent to not read this thread. So I don't mind him looking. We'll pretend that my Company is embedded with a reporter who likes to broadcast live. Not the one from the Rolling Stones . Let's go!
  13. This thread will be a repository for videos showcasing a PBEM game I had against @BletchleyGeek which had finished about 4 months ago. Do not expect quick or timely updates, this is a free-time only type of project, and is mostly me trying to shake off my lethargy after running three PBEM games concurrently, which left me feeling a bit burned out for a while. Without further ado, stand by to receive your mission briefing! Feel free to leave comments, or ask questions, but I would ask that ancillary discussion be kept to a minimum.
  14. Initial situation This AAR is being played using the Quick Battle system from the v4 engine in the new version of Shock Force. We are playing a Red probe with Bil taking the Syrians vs Canadians commanded by myself. The back story we decided on is that the NATO advance is proceeding well and the Canadian battle group has been assigned to flank protection for the main advance. D Company has been directed to take up positions around a village on the main East West road in the area. Taking the walk through the village to meet with the local elders was something that Capt. Leslie actually enjoyed. The security situation for these types of meetings was much better here than in Afghanistan where, as a platoon commander, often had to provide security for the CO in one of these meetings. Over there it was always a nerve racking time. Here, today, his men had taken up their positions already and there was no love for the Assad regime around here. There was no love for the Assads anywhere actually – even in the enclave where his family drew the most support it was based on fear not love. So his walk today was pretty safe. Walking through the village reminded him of the last time he was in Syria. When he was just a boy visiting his father who was stationed on the Golan Heights as a UN Observer. Back then this trip to Syria was an exciting event. He got to fly on Hercules from Germany to Damascus where his Dad’s apartment was. The trip had made an impression. Not just the Roman ruins and the amazing castle Krak des Chevaliers (and having lived in the UK a few years earlier he knew castles) but it was really the people that impressed him the most. They were so friendly and open. It was this trip and listening to his father tell the stories of visiting with security guards on his way home each night that cemented in him the certain knowledge that you can go anywhere in the world and the regular people you meet are more like you then they are different. This meeting was just a formality but an important one. They would not be here for long and the Canadians had no mandate to provide any kind of assistance this was just to introduce the force that would be on their door steps for a while and point out that most likely nothing eventful would happen today, tomorrow or the next day. Capt. Leslie had put off this meeting for a hour because he had to spend time on the radio sorting out their artillery support. They were not expecting any action and so had only been assigned only a battery of light artillery and some Battalion mortars but he wanted to make sure they were ready with solutions plotted just to be sure. For some reason there had been a delay. Usually the artillery guys were ready before his FO was but today somehow the assignments had been confused and no battery thought they were supposed to be on call for D Co.. He had the reputation not as a rising star but a solid cross the t’s dot the i’s find a solution get it done officer. And he had done so again. Other officers liked him because he did his homework and was fair even when he was pushing for something. He didn’t make a big production but he didn’t back down either. He remembered his Dad used to say “not everyone can be a rising star, those stars need good officers to get their jobs done”. His Dad’s other advice when he joined up as a junior officer was “always listen to your Sergeants and Warrant Officers, they are the ones that have the experience know how to help you find solutions and keep you from screwing up”. He had taken the advice to heart. Force selection: The Quick Battle system is still not complete so don’t read much into what you see other than the happy path I will describe J. As you can see the usual points panel is there along with the selected force’s flag and available branches. The various units might still need tweaking in the QB list and single vehicles and teams is not officially complete and the points might change. All the usual caveats apply. No one has tested the auto pick force make up yet – although the three times I used it during testing it actually did a good job. At any rate before release this stuff will be tweaked some more. Similar to the CMBS game there are combined force battle groups available. That is where I will start: Defending in a Medium Probe lets you purchase about a mechanized company or so. I start with paring back to D Company and a platoon of tanks. Then I do something I started doing recently – renaming the top commander on QB battle field after myself. I think it is more fun to think of yourself down there in the game. Hopefully no one thinks it is too arrogant since I have never served as more than a truck driver but I’m adding a little colour this time based on an alternate reality where I joined up back in university like I very nearly did. Now the hard choices. I am pretty certain that Bil will be bringing armour to this and those T72s are every bit as deadly to the Leos as the Leos are to the T72s. That means I need to be able to handle enemy armour. So, to get the points room to have some support I chose not give up a tank but instead gave up a platoon of infantry. Therefore the basic force is two platoons of infantry and one troop of tanks. With that I’ll settled I chose to keep two of the battalion’s AT LAVs, one battery of mortars and a sniper team. Never leave home without your sniper team.
  15. Hello, This is going to be an AAR of the Combat Mission Scenario: Going To Town as the Ukranians. I'm playing against a personal friend who I don't believe is registered on the forums. Before I start, thanks to @Rinaldi in particular for his advice with regards to making this AAR. I am new both to making AARs and playing as Ukraine, so I fully expect this to be rough around the edges, any advice would be appreciated. The Briefing I am a shattered Ukrainian Mountain Mechanized Unit who has been thrown into this town to halt an advance by a Russian Mechanized Unit. The time limit is 50 minutes and the skill level is set to elite. My own force (as you shall see from my OOB in a moment) is small, but relatively well trained and equipped. I have no ATGM units, nor do I have any artillery support. But command has managed to provide me with some vehicle support in the form of two BMP-2s, a T64, and a Tunguska to act as a fire support vehicle. I am also well equipped with machine guns and RPG of various models. My force ranges from veteran to regular in terms of experience, and all seem to be well off in terms of morale. My OOB is as follows: 2 Sniper teams 5 dedicated Machine Gunner Squads (3 light teams with RPKs, 2 medium teams armed with PK MGs) 4 3 man rifle teams with RPGs 1 RPO team 2 dedicated RPG teams 2 Grenade Launcher squads with ASG-17 3 2 man rifle squads armed with RPKs Vehicles: 1 T-64 Bulat 2 BMP-2s 1 Tunguska Here is an overview of the map, as you can see its a fairly large town. But, its split between myself on one side and the Russians on the other. There are two obvious routes into my side of the town. One along the main road and the other, smaller road on the right side. My plan is to concentrate the bulk of my forces on major road down the center, with a secondary force holding the less obvious road on the right. As you can see, I have concentrated the Bulat and Tunguska in the center to cover the main road. Joining them are various RPG and MG teams in the building. The idea behind my defense is to concentrate my forces in the forward buildings, which should allow me to gather good intelligence on the enemy force as well as hopefully engage any forces he sends forward. If things don't go my way, I have an easy line of retreat to the secondary buildings located at the southern end of the town square and at the department store. I doubt, given the state of my forces, that I can actually stop his entire force if he goes all in on a single attack axis. My hope is that he moves forward smaller groups that I can hopefully ambush from the buildings and overwhelm before retreating. Along the secondary road on the right. I have 2 BMP2s along with some supporting RPG and MG teams. Again the same basic logic applies. The forward RPG team can hopefully get some kills, and if not, they have an easy line of retreat to the line of buildings in the apartment store. Lets look at some close up screens of the defense I have set up. The main road: This is a minor tripwire force consisting of a light lmg team and a sniper squad that start locked in position. The defense along the secondary road: BMP2 in cover and RPG teams As you can see, this is heavily skewed towards an advance down the main road. Although much of my assets can be easily shifted to deal with a full on advance down the right road if absolutely necessary.
  16. The AAR I have made an AAR for the small scenario Platoon patrol and it seems to be getting good feedback, figured I'd post it on here as well.
  17. Good morning/afternoon/evening everyone. This is an AAR of a PBEM played with the British Forces module of Combat Mission: Shock Force. The scenario is "Sabres at Dawn" - I am attacking with a British light armoured reconnaissance force and @Rinaldi is defending with a Syrian reserve mechanised infantry force. So, without further ado, let's do a quick analysis of the situation. My primary task is to attack and clear a compound known as the "East Yard" approximately 500m to the North-Northeast of my deployment zone. My secondary task is simply to destroy the enemy in the field. I must not suffer over 20% casualties and must have my force "arrayed for future operations", which presumably means I must keep ammunition expenditure to a reasonable level and have as little vehicles immobilised as possible. My force consists of light armour and mechanised reconnaissance infantry, supported by ATGM teams and rotary-wing assets. My enemy is defending positions in and around the East Yard, north of a deep irrigation ditch running west-east across the Area of Operations (AO). Intelligence states that there are no enemy units South of the irrigation ditch. Presumably, given the low quality of my enemy's units, his intent is to hold his position for as long as possible and bleed my forces as much as he can before being eliminated. Enemy forces are estimated to be a platoon-sized force from a reserve mechanised infantry battalion equipped with BMP-1s. It is possible that they may be supported by ATGM teams. Due to my enemy commanding a reserve unit, it is likely that the equipment, training and leadership of his units are of a low quality. However, several things should encourage me to caution. Firstly, my own force is small and very light, designed for reconnaissance, not assaults on fortified positions. The BMP-1 is not a fearsome machine in Shock Force, but even its low-velocity 73mm cannon can easily pop any of my vehicles if it can land a hit. Secondly (and more importantly), Rinaldi is a highly skilled and experienced player of Combat Mission. I myself have very little experience, with only two other PBEMs under my belt (one of which ended prematurely because my opponent got bored, the other of which ended with Rinaldi kicking my teeth in). I can expect my opponent to quickly develop a very clear appraisal of the situation, with great knowledge of the capabilities of both his and my own units. He will likely try and engage me at as short a range as possible to try and offset the advantages that modern optics and firepower give me. He will be on the lookout for any weakness or mistake and will exploit such opportunity ruthlessly. I must be very careful if I am to avoid being severely embarrassed here (doubly so, as Rinaldi takes great pleasure in denigrating the fighting ability of my countrymen ). Now for the terrain. The AO is small, only about 350x600m. To my immediate front and right, the ground is open and rises steeply, before gently falling off to the north. To my left, the ground rises more gently, with an MSR running North-South and a small Orchard running North along the edge of the map. The aforementioned irrigation ditch runs east-west, bisecting the AO. The briefing informs me that the ditch is unfordable, with only two crossing points, designated Tweedledum (to the north-west) and Tweedledee (to the north-east). North of the irrigation ditch, the terrain becomes more complex. There is a small compound immediately North and to the left of Tweedledum, known as the "Tool Houses". North of the Tool Houses there is a gentle hill, designated "Point 228". Immediately North of Tweedledee is my objective, the East Yard, a sprawling compound of one-storey buildings. North of the East Yard is another hill, designated "Point 225". Both Point 228 and 225 are covered in trenches. There is a thick haze covering the AO, the temperature is warm, the ground is very dry and there is a medium breeze blowing from the west. Finally, a view of the AO through the eyes of my enemy. He has some excellent positions to take advantage of, with a large obstacle to his front, the complex semi-urban terrain on his left and right, and elevated fighting positions to his left-rear and right-rear. Now to identify the key terrain (KT) of the AO. The first KT is the hill immediately to the front and right of my deployment zone. This is one of the highest points on the map and will provide excellent sight lines and fields of fire to the North. The second KT is Tweedledum and the Tool Houses. Tweedledum is one of only two points where the irrigation ditch can be crossed and the Tool Houses could provide cover and concealment for forces defending the crossing point. The Tool Houses could be a good place for a forward observation post. The third KT is Point 228. this hill provides sightlines and fields of fire across almost the entire AO, and the reverse slope offers an excellent place to conceal forces, for ambush or counterattack. Any advance towards the East Yard will be enfiladed by fire from Point 228. The fourth and final KT is the East Yard and Point 225. The East Yard is my objective and must be cleared, but is also likely to be the toughest nut to crack. If he so wishes, Rinaldi could hide units deep in this compound as my units approach, before making a potentially devastating point-blank ambush. Point 225 provides good lines of sight over the open ground south of the irrigation ditch and would make another good location for an observation post. Now for a detailed assessment of the force at my disposal. I command a small company-sized force from "A" Squadron of the 9th/12th Lancers. Firstly, we have the Command Troop with the Squadron Leader and Second in Command (2iC) mounted in Sultan APCs. A Tactical Air Controller team is mounted in a Spartan APC and will be directing the fires of a single Apache gunship. Secondly, we have 1 Troop, consisting of four Scimitar light tanks. These little fellows are fast, agile and equipped with a hard-hitting 30mm autocannon. They wield the heaviest firepower of my force but are very lightly armoured, only really able to resist small arms fire. Thirdly, we have the Support Troop, consisting of the command team and four four-man scout teams, all mounted in Spartan APCs. Each scout team has a SAW, a sniper rifle, an under-barrel grenade launcher and three light anti-tank weapons (LAW). These infantry teams will be needed to clear out the East Yard and conduct dismounted reconnaissance, but are all very fragile. This is undoubtedly the most vulnerable but also the most important part of my force. Last, but definitely not least, we have the Guided Weapons Troop, consisting of two Javelin teams mounted in Spartan APCs. Each team has five missiles. The Javelin is an excellent weapon, accurate and very hard hitting. These teams will likely be the best option for knocking out AFVs and other hard targets. Troops thus covered, all that remains is the time; it is currently 0530 and I have 50 minutes to complete my objectives. Phew, so much for a quick analysis! I still haven't really thought much about what my enemy might do or made a tentative plan yet. However, this post is getting rather long so I shall leave that for my next entry. Stay tuned!
  18. Hello this is an AAR of my quick battle with @Oleksandr It's a Russia vs Ukraine medium size meeting engagement. I haven't played much Black Sea (I mostly play Final Blitzkrieg) and I went with what I figure would be a standard force. I have four platoons of mounted infantry, 5 T-90AMs, six mortars, a mounted grenade launcher platoon, and an igla platoon and a Tunguska for AA. I don't have a very advanced plan. Essentially move forward and see how the match develops from there. But I assume the major objective will be the main contest and the minor objectives won't be very contested. I send two platoons of infantry, the T-90AMs, and the grenade launchers to the center. I send a platoon of infantry on each flank, one to secure my minor objective, the other to contest his minor objective if possible. I dismount my platoon that is securing the minor objective since it is rather exposed, the BMP-3s will be first to the objective. Damn! I lose two BMP-3s at the same time and I don't even know what killed them, looks like tank rounds though. Good thing I dismounted. This doesn't change my plans but I do am now aware of how dangerous the area around the minor objective is. Going to move my infantry platoon in the forest next to the minor objective. I spotted a Tunguska while the rest of my units move forward uneventfully. Next post will be soon, either tomorrow or the day after.
  19. Hi everyone! This is not an official AAR cause I was enjoying the game too much to take screenshots during the scenario. I only managed to save after the battle ended so all the screenshots are front the end of the scenario , but I would like to share my recent experience with black sea. After trying out the Demo and playing the training mission twice (lost the first time) I noticed at the end of the game the AI retreated to the woods when i was closing in on the town. I thought that was kinda cool and realistic. After all, the logical path was to retreat to the woods. Later, after reading more about the game's AI, I was somewhat surprise that it was based on trigger and that the AI had 3 levels. strategic, operational and tactical. I believe the strategic level is the one that is trigger based. So I bought myself my first CM copy. I played through the training campaign while following the guidelines on the manual which i had printed out. In the last mission I realise that it was the same scenario from the demo so I thought I would do fine but this time I followed the manual by splitting my team and all. First, I noticed when I sent my riflemen scout near the observation post alone they were engaged by snipers from the forest, which I kinda knew was there. However, this did not happened the first time I played in the demo, and I don't quite remember what I did. I made some mistakes on the way and ended up losing my observer, HQ and and 1 squad. So I restarted the scenario again but this time I did it my way instead of following the manual. I sent one of my Bradley to to the side of the sunken road to engage the snipers which I know would shoot my guys near the woods at the observation post, but nothing happened I sent the same rifle squad to scout the woods and I got no engagement from the other side, no snipers, nothing. I sent he rest of my assault troops to assault route 1 without incident only engaging 2 squads on the way to assault route 2. By the end of this scenario, I caught the Russians retreating to the woods again just like in the demo, however this time I had 2 Bradleys near the entrance of the woods, getting ready for a massacre. Guess what, only 2 squads came out and after getting shot, the rest of them decided to stay in the buildings surrounding the chapel. They refused to come out until they surrendered, i managed to only take out 1 squad out of 4-5 that attempted to retreat back to the woods, mainly because I believe they turn back after the first two squads were engaged by my Bradleys After this, all I can say is that I am very impressed with the AI reaction to what do in the battlefield. It could just be random luck that i trigger or did not trigger certain triggers but this is the most realistic AI opponent I have seen. In most games if the AI retreats if that even happens then it will happen no matter what, even if they are running into a meat grinder, but not in CM. All that remains of the Russian forces. Made a mistake and lost a full squad, I was hoping to get full score. Some Russians who died to my Bradley flanking them from the back of the town. Bradleys are beasts!
  20. I had a PBEM with IICptMillerII a short time ago, and I figured I'd post some videos. This one came out rather strange, because for a fair chunk of this scenario, we had direct voice chat with each other via Discord. This led to some cryptic communications, but also a rather fun atmosphere, which allowed open conversation of the game, while playing it. It was certainly outside my normal playstyle. I'll post each part of the AAR here as I release them. Feel free to comment.
  21. Introduction A while back there was a post on the BFC Battle for Normandy forum announcing a new project by @choppinlt “Operational Level Game Announcement”: http://community.battlefront.com/topic/109632-operational-level-game-announcement/. He and his team have been working away on the project ever since. The have a system designed and they are testing mockups now. You can read about it in full here http://dogsofwarvu.com/forum/index.php/board,36.0.html but this AAR is for but one small battle in one mocked up campaign. To read about the overall campaign from the US perspective you can check out this thread: http://dogsofwarvu.com/forum/index.php/topic,3111.0.html. The battle in question takes place on turn 7. In a previous turn someone used ASL to determine the outcome of a campaign battle. This time it is CM’s turn. Read about it here http://dogsofwarvu.com/forum/index.php/topic,3111.msg14998.html#msg14998. @Mad Mike and I are fighting this battle out: Notice the second battalion of the 116th (2/116) on the right edge of the map. The battle of St. Andre de l’Epine You can read about the setup for the order of battle and such here (I just tried to not read the German info too closely). http://dogsofwarvu.com/forum/index.php/topic,3613.0.html Here is a summary of how we prepared for the battle: @Mad Mike chose the map Hill 192 (http://www.combatmission.lesliesoftware.com/BattleForNormandy/Maps/HILL%20192%20expanded.html) @choppinltdetermined the forces for both sides and sent us screen shots of the force selection in CM @Mad Mike setup his forces and after a little back and forth with @choppinlt handed the map off to me I chose my forces, again with @choppinlt ’s help. I missed a few things and asked a bunch of questions. I then setup the deployment of the forces – this is using the scenario editor we have not started the game yet. This is an important step since I have a battalion of infantry and two companies of tanks plus some supporting engineers and a 200m strip of land for setup zone. After looking at the map what I decided to do was: i. Two companies would push forward along two avenues but not so far apart that they could not combine to exploit success on one avenue and failure on the other ii. I determined that the setup area is too small for everything to arrive at once. If the enemy has artillery that could be used (not during setup but later) I just don’t want my forces to be that concentrated. Heck 200m depth is too little for that many forces at any rate. iii. I divided up my forces so that F Co is on the left and E Co is on the right and each has tanks in support. G Co is in reserve and the weapons company, H Co, had its resources divided between the three other companies. iv. Then I set things up so that battalion recon and one platoon of each company plus the company HQ started on the map. v. The rest of the companies plus a platoon of tanks arrived after 5 minutes vi. Additional tanks arrived after 10 minutes vii. The rest of the tanks arrived after 15 minutes along with the engineers viii. The rest of the infantry arrive after 20 minutes ix. The rest of the forces – including an AT gun platoon that I am not sure what I am going to do with arrive later @Mad Mike and I sent the file back and forth a couple of more times to tweak things as per the discussion. We loaded the scenario and started playing. Forces 837 men (6% casualties is 50 men) 2nd Infantry Battalion 116th Regiment Lt Col Madison Pioneer Platoon Lt. McKee AT Platoon E Co Cpt. Rost 1st Platoon Lt. Moustakis 2nd Platoon Lt. Dubbins 3rd Platoon Lt. Cudlipp 4th Platoon Lt. Ogden F Co Cpt. Bova 1st Platoon Lt. Turner 2nd Platoon Lt. Salberg 3rd Platoon Lt. Hillard 4th Platoon Lt. Keller G Co Cpt. Salder 1st Platoon Lt. Grow 2nd Platoon Lt. Weire 3rd Platoon Lt. Krumin 4th Platoon Lt. Youmans H Co Cpt. Palmer 1st Platoon Lt. Reece 2nd Platoon Lt. Castro 3rd Platoon Lt. Cooper 747th Tank Battalion A Co Cpt. Donavan 1st Platoon Lt. Tubb 2nd Platoon Lt. Denney B Co Cpt. Fry 1st Platoon Lt. Wynn 2nd Platoon Lt. White 121st Engineers B Co. Cpt. Edward Humpheries 1st Platoon Lt. Dunlap 2nd Platoon Lt. Sanchez 3rd Platoon Lt. Blair The Mission The US infantry, and their tank support, need to advance up to 1000m with 6% casualties or less. If my forces manage to advance 300m into the defensive area it will be considered a success and if they can make it 400m they it will be exceeding expectations. In order to track my progress I added touch lines Able (200m past the line of contact), Baker (400m past the line of contact), Charlie 600m, Dog 800m and Easy 1000m. The edge of the setup zone is 200m a head of the line of contact.
  22. I've been reading, again, Blumenson's Breakout and Pursuit. Along with this, I've been doing some other research and located a trove of aar's in the Ike Skelton Combined Arms Research Library Digital Library. What I'm having difficulty (sp: l a z i n e s s, ) with is converting map coordinates in the aar's into lats & longs so I can find a "real" location. I've found a site explaining the "British Modified System", but that system uses coordinates such as "vZ3383", meaning (as best as I can tell) Map Section vZ, 33 kM East/83 kM North. The US aar's use coordinates similar to, say, "565-068". Does anyone here have a link that will point me in the right direction. I'm a land surveyor IRL, so I do understand coordinates, projections and the sort. Thanks in advance, Rake
  23. Hello everyone, as promised in the preview thread; here is the much belated AAR preview of "Duel in the Mist", one of the scenarios that will be part of this community-driven package. Needless to say, everything in the scenario is technically still a WIP and subject to change. A few pre-emptive answers for the curious: Will this be for H2H? It won't be geared or tested as such, but I will be giving the Axis side a fully fleshed out mission briefing for those who want to take a crack Will it be playable both sides in SP? Tentatively a yes; three AI plans have made the 'final cut' for the Axis, and I am mulling over the idea of putting in at least a token AI plan for the Allies. Regardless, this is meant to be played Americans first. Now, without further ado. “Once and For All” A D/AAR prepared for Battlefront & SimHQ September 20th, 1944. Although neither side are quite aware of it yet, we are 2 days into what will eventually be known as “The Battle of Arracourt.” The first two days of this meeting engagement have been defined by mutual confusion, poor weather and tenuous contacts between units. The Americans, flush from a dramatic envelopment of the ancient city of Nancy after a hard fought crossing of the Moselle, are eager to expand their bridgehead on the River Moselle, and indeed some of George S. Patton’s lieutenants are lobbying their bombastic commander for a push to the River Saar and German’ys little industrial heartland, secondary only to the Ruhr. However, others preach caution. The tyranny of logistics is rearing its awful head, the natural result of a month long advance which saw the systematic destruction of Army Group B and the severe mauling of Army Group G. The Germans are exhausted and tired, but the Allies are almost equally so after their pursuit. The stage is set; the 4th US Armored Division, whom helped seal Nancy off, have just concluded a series of raids into the German’s rear and are now covering the bridgehead while the Infantry mop up. This operational pause has given the Germans, already beginning to recover, the opportunity to launch an operational counteroffensive to throw the Americans back across the Moselle – which will surely become a formidable natural obstacle when the autumn swell begins. While the 4th Armored Division gears up for a renewed advance, they will find their plans rudely interrupted by a series of alarming German tank thrusts. Situation & Briefing: It is now 1500 hours, September 20th, 1944. I am Lieutenant-Colonel Abrams, commanding officer of the 37th Tank Battalion, 4th Armored Division. A matter of minutes ago, after briefing my Company commanders and establishing liaison with the attached infantry, my strung out column began concentrating in Lezey. Now, we are getting ready to move out due East, in defilade, to a point north of the town of Ley. From there, the Battalion (+) will begin its attack by turning South. The overall situation remains unclear to us, but it is clear that attacking towards the canal will compel the enemy to retreat or risk being split or enveloped. The terrain in front of us consists of rolling hills and agricultural fields, with two narrow and claustrophobic villages: Ley, and Moncourt, in our path of attack. We have pre-registered fires and briefed the men, and are ready to advance cross-country. The terrain is well known to us, the Battalion had elements in this area less than 24 hours ago and we have the luxury of foregoing a terrain and map reconnaissance as a result. It has rained intermittently through the morning and the day dawned with the same, dense fog as it had on the 19th. Visibility has improved, however, but it remains a gloomy and dark day with damp ground. Visibility is rated at 1200-1700m in the light fog that lays over the terrain. Despite the saturated terrain, we’re confident that the terrain is excellent for cross-country movement. Objectives: Combat Command A has ordered you to advance towards the Marne-Rhine canal and sweep and clear the area ‘once and for all.’ It is evident that the attacks from the enemy yesterday are far more than local actions and CCA wants the division’s flank and rear clear. Obviously then, destruction of enemy units is our primary concern. We must DESTROY all enemy encountered (Up to 2000 points). Given the nature of the operation and the desire to resume offensive operations towards Saarguemines, we are strongly expected to PRESERVE our combat power, that means ammunition (50% - 500 points), lives and material (>15% losses – 1500 points). However, in planning the attack with my Company leaders, I have assigned intermediate objectives based on key terrain. Ley and Moncourt, sitting astride Route D22 offer excellent assembly areas, the enemy is likely to be holding both in some strength. It is necessary to occupy both (250 points each). High ground and its reverse slope to the East (our left) provides a potential assembly area for counterattacking enemy and may enfilade our maneuvering elements. I have therefore deemed it necessary to occupy this high ground for security (500 points.) Above are two different angles of the Key Terrain of the high ground objective overlooking Ley. Even with the fog and moderate visibility you can see why Abrams was keen to anchor his flank by seizing it. They're imposing and the valley formed between the two hills are excellent ways to filter down an attacker's flank. Luckily I have the tools to both advance strongly and secure my flanks, with a powerful taskforce at call... Order of Battle: I am in command of a Battalion (+). It consists of my own command; the 37th Tank Battalion (which forms the nucleus of the force). Attached is 10th Armored Infantry Battalion (-Company), C/704th Tank Destroyer Battalion and the entirety of the 94th Armored Field Artillery Battalion (18 guns). Anti-Tank, Tank-Destroyer and Engineer elements have been left behind at the assembly area of Lezey for rear security and as an emergency reserve, given the fluidity of the situation. At hand, therefore, I possess: · Headquarters, 37th Tank Battalion (Lt. Col. Abrams) (incl. Battalion 81mms) · A/37th Tank Battalion (Capt. Spencer – 9 tanks) · B/37th Tank Battalion (Capt. Leach – 13 tanks) · C/37th Tank Battalion (Capt. Lamison – 13 tanks) · Headquarters, 10th Armored Infantry (-) (Lt. Col. West) · A/10th Armored Infantry – 90% effective strength · C/10th Armored Infantry – 90% effective strength. · 94th Armored Field Artillery Battalion (16 guns – satisfactory ammo) ____ More to follow...
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