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I'm looking to pick up my first Combat Mission game, and am torn between Final Blitzkrieg, Battle for Normandy, and Fortress Italy. Can anyone enlighten me as to the major differences between them other than what theatre they follow? I'm mainly curious about mechanics, the amount of units, and the amount of scenarios, alongside general enjoyment. 

 

Alongside that, I'm also curious as to how exactly the engine upgrades work. If I buy, say, Fortress Italy, and want to upgrade to Upgrade 4, do I have to have purchased upgrade 3 prior to that, or can I just go right into Upgrade 4?

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Second question first:  I think (but someone else should confirm) that v4.00 is the version automatically provided in new purchases.  If not, the Master Installer process upgrades v3.1x users up to v4.00 using the purchased upgrade key.

First question second:  For myself, CMBN provides the most value for your money.  As the oldest title it enjoys more user made scenario's, campaigns, and mods than any of the other WW2 games.  Otherwise go with the theater and time-frame you desire most to play (MTO '43, ETO '44 or '45, Ostfront '44).  Which pixeltruppen do you prefer to command and against which adversary do you prefer to lead them?  I own CMBN with all modules, CMFI/GL, and CMFB.  After CMBN, CMFI is my second favorite.  I don't own CMRT because I'm not an Ostfront fan per se and there's already so many games and so little time.  B)

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18 minutes ago, Icechuck said:

I'm looking to pick up my first Combat Mission game, and am torn between Final Blitzkrieg, Battle for Normandy, and Fortress Italy. Can anyone enlighten me as to the major differences between them other than what theatre they follow? I'm mainly curious about mechanics, the amount of units, and the amount of scenarios, alongside general enjoyment. 

 

Alongside that, I'm also curious as to how exactly the engine upgrades work. If I buy, say, Fortress Italy, and want to upgrade to Upgrade 4, do I have to have purchased upgrade 3 prior to that, or can I just go right into Upgrade 4?

Anything will be at 4.0 when you buy it new.

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Battle For Normandy (and all its content): France/Holland June 44 - Sept 44. US, Brits, Canadians, Polish Vs German Heer, Waffen SS, Luftwaffe ground troops, and Kriegsmarines.

Fortress Italy (and one module. NEW MODULE ON THE WAY): Sicily/Italian Mainland July 43 - May 44. US, Brits, New Zealand, Polish Vs German Heer, Luftwaffe ground troops and Italians: Bersaglieri & Black Shirts included. 

Red Thunder (NEW MODULE PENDING): Soviet Union/Eastern Europe. Russia (Soviet Army/Soviet Guards) Vs German Heer.

Final Blitzkrieg (EXPANDED IN THE FUTURE): France/Holland/Ardennes/Germany October 44 - January 45. Us Vs German Heer, Waffen SS, Luftwaffe ground troops.

 

 

Normandy has the most content (vehicles, armor, guns, and troop types at the moment).

 

78 German vehicle (4 not shown) and just about every friggin' infantry/armor formation type you could want in a game at this level.

BFNGermans.jpg

 

36 Us vehicles, and all the infantry/armor formations.

BFNUS1.jpg

 

50 Brit/Commonwealth vehicles, and all the infantry/armor formations.

 

BFNCW.jpg

 

Then there's all this cool stuff.

German_Guns.jpg

 

Allied_Guns.jpg

 

If theater isn't a priority, my suggestion would be Normandy first, CMFI second, and RT or FB next. Content wise that would be the way to go—bang for the buck. They are all fun, and it's really cool to have choices depending on your mood. Let us know what you choose.

 

And remember all games run at the same engine version, so NO FEATURE ENVY!

 

Mord.

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The only mark against CMBN is that most of the maps have lots of "bocage": tall or waist high shrubs that units can fire through but not move through. Bocage battles can become monotonous, especially on the flat maps which are common in CMBN. 

CMFI has more heterogeneous terrain and little to no bocage.

CMRT has little to no bocage. 

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