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Campaigns vs. CMAK/CMBB

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Well, those aren't very helpful replies.

In brief, they're totally different. I assume you're well familiar with CMx1 campaigns, so I won't describe those for comparison.

CMBN campaigns are actually a series of linked scenarios. For example, you fight scenario A. Depending on how well you do in scenario A, you might then progress to scenario B1 if you win, or B2 if you lose. B2 could be more or less the same fight as B1, on the same map but with harder enemy resistance or some other changes to reflect the fact that the player lost scenario A, or it could be a totally different battle, representing the idea that the loss of scenario A as changed the larger tactical picture, and therefore fighting is taking place in a different place.

Campaigns usually feature a set of "core units", which carry forward from battle to battle. The campaign designer decides which units are "core" and which units are "one-off" and are with the player only in one scenario. For core units, the campaign designer also has control over things like resupply & repair between scenarios, when and if any replacements for casualties are available, etc.

That's the basic idea. The structure of campaigns can be a very simple and linear scenario progression A-B-C-D, or it can be quite complex. If you want all the gory details, I suggest reading the relevant sections of the CMBN manual.

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Good summary by YankeeDog there.

I played CMBO a lot (very little CMBB). And I would add that IMO the campaigns there were pretty much an afterthought and pretty broken. They tended both to largeness and to snowballing, not a good mix. The CMBN campaigns, by contrast, are lots of fun.

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I loved CM1 campaigns. CM2 campaigns are better as they can have mission branches in addition to the results carrying over into the next mission. Clever scenario designers have also found a way to give the player a choice as to what their next mission will be. Eg: "Do you want to continue your attack along the road, or go cross-country?"

However, unlike CM1, in CM2 you no longer can have a campaign in which one's success/failure in a mission moves a map "window" across a larger map to show progress for the next mission.

I have played almost all the available CMBN campaigns (around 10). I find them all very playable and I much prefer them to the standalone scenarios.

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