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Huge scenario covering Peiper's advance through La Gleize to Stoumont. German vs Allied. Could try H2H but untested. 4 x2.3km map, my interpretation. Any comments good or bad taken on board.  Mis

Far from it. Appreciate all comments good and negative. How can I improve as an amateur designer otherwise? There are a lot of smaller scenarios, which are great and I enjoy...but fewer huge scal

@Bulletpoint Yep, at the moment only one plan but USA reinforcements have variable arrival times which can help or hinder. V2 will include multiple plans, TRP placement already done, building improvem

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Ok so I booted up this mission, and some first impressions:

1: Wow, this thing is huge. Very impressive. Is it a master map or did you do the map, yourself?

2: For the first time ever, I actually miss having some recon jeeps to scout ahead and find clear routes :)

3: Some of the house placements in the towns seem a bit odd - for example, there are some small shacks at odd angles to the roads. Also, I think towns back then had less space between the buildings than nowadays. But I haven't been able to find any WW2 aerial photo of La Gleize to compare. Just disregard this point if I'm wrong.

4: I noticed that you set ground conditions to muddy, and temperature to freezing. If you want there to be a bogging risk and force the player to keep his tanks on the roads, you should not set subzero teperatures, because it overrides the muddy conditions. Basically the game treats all mud as frozen solid. I've played several scenarios where the designer warns against mud, but where there's actually almost no danger of bogging, because he also set temperatures to freezing.

5: The infantry in the Panzerspitze is mostly regulars with poor soft factors. I think the spearpoint of KG Peiper would be the place where the Germans put some of their very best remaining units. Not saying they should all be elite +2, but I think it would be warranted to bump up their quality considerably. I haven't checked what quality later units have, but I think they should also be quite capable.

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17 hours ago, Bulletpoint said:

I've been thinking a lot about how to design something like that. Now I can play one and get some inspiration

I'd recommend that you also have a chat with @MOS:96B2P 

He is (IMHO) the master of long-duration high-complexity scripting.  B)

If you have either CM:BS or CM:SF2, he has already made scenarios of exactly this type that you can try out ('TOC' & 'Coup' respectively).

12 minutes ago, Bulletpoint said:

5: The infantry in the Panzerspitze is mostly regulars with poor soft factors. I think the spearpoint of KG Peiper would be the place where the Germans put some of their very best remaining units. Not saying they should all be elite +2, but I think it would be warranted to bump up their quality considerably.

Almost all of those dudes were dead by this point in time.  :mellow:

There are plenty of contemporary accounts of German officers bemoaning the poor quality of their troops in the Ardennes offensive.....IIRC I have exactly such an account from a major within KG Peiper itself, but I'd have to dig to find it.

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3 minutes ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:
19 minutes ago, Bulletpoint said:

5: The infantry in the Panzerspitze is mostly regulars with poor soft factors. I think the spearpoint of KG Peiper would be the place where the Germans put some of their very best remaining units. Not saying they should all be elite +2, but I think it would be warranted to bump up their quality considerably.

Almost all of those dudes were dead by this point in time.  :mellow:

There are plenty of contemporary accounts of German officers bemoaning the poor quality of their troops in the Ardennes offensive.....IIRC I have exactly such an account from a major within KG Peiper itself, but I'd have to dig to find it.

I'd be interested in reading it, if you have time to dig it out.

The important thing for me is not that if they are good or bad quality, but that they reflect the historical conditions. Especially when playing a historical scenario such as this, I like the details to match real history as closely as possible.

And also that it should be consistent. There are several tanks with crack level crews in the Panzerspitze in this mission.

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12 minutes ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

I'd recommend that you also have a chat with @MOS:96B2P 

He is (IMHO) the master of long-duration high-complexity scripting.  B)

If you have either CM:BS or CM:SF2, he has already made scenarios of exactly this type that you can try out ('TOC' & 'Coup' respectively).

Almost all of those dudes were dead by this point in time.  :mellow:

There are plenty of contemporary accounts of German officers bemoaning the poor quality of their troops in the Ardennes offensive.....IIRC I have exactly such an account from a major within KG Peiper itself, but I'd have to dig to find it.

 In the book Snow and Steel it says the majority of the troops were recent conscripts from the Kriegsmarine and Luftwaffe with most having only 3 - 6 weeks of training and no combat experience. The troops that had combat experience were intermixed with them and in most cases the leaders were of good quality. But as the battle wore on the leaders were killed off as they were always at the front so that left them basically leaderless as things started to bog down. I'm pretty sure that that most if not all the tank crews were pretty experienced.

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Just now, Commanderski said:

The troops that had combat experience were intermixed with them and in most cases the leaders were of good quality. But as the battle wore on the leaders were killed off as they were always at the front so that left them basically leaderless as things started to bog down. I'm pretty sure that that most if not all the tank crews were pretty experienced.

This matches the account that I recall.....In it the officer encounters an NCO he has known since the early days of the war, now leading troops who are mostly just kids.  Shortly after the officer leaves, a mortar round hits their position killing the NCO.

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3 minutes ago, Commanderski said:
22 minutes ago, Sgt.Squarehead said:

I'd recommend that you also have a chat with @MOS:96B2P 

He is (IMHO) the master of long-duration high-complexity scripting.  B)

If you have either CM:BS or CM:SF2, he has already made scenarios of exactly this type that you can try out ('TOC' & 'Coup' respectively).

Almost all of those dudes were dead by this point in time.  :mellow:

There are plenty of contemporary accounts of German officers bemoaning the poor quality of their troops in the Ardennes offensive.....IIRC I have exactly such an account from a major within KG Peiper itself, but I'd have to dig to find it.

 In the book Snow and Steel it says the majority of the troops were recent conscripts from the Kriegsmarine and Luftwaffe with most having only 3 - 6 weeks of training and no combat experience. The troops that had combat experience were intermixed with them and in most cases the leaders were of good quality. But as the battle wore on the leaders were killed off as they were always at the front so that left them basically leaderless as things started to bog down. I'm pretty sure that that most if not all the tank crews were pretty experienced.

Thanks, +1

I do think the Spitze troops should have better than -1 leadership then, at this opening stage of the operation.

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While I could probably agree for some of the platoon & company commanders, IMHO for the bulk of the squad leaders that really doesn't seem unfair.

However, against the broader picture that @theforger has painted (and it is very broad), I think that this is a very small issue indeed.....Let's see how it plays out.  B)

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35 min in and It is awesome. have you ever had a car chase in the dark while playing CM? I did in this scenario. A PZ IV got passed on the road by a loaded US deuce and a half. Passed! My turret turned but didn't fire. The truck disappeared around the corner in the dark! I had to chase it for 2 turns not knowing if it had turned off as all I would see were occasional noise indicators. Outstanding.  

@George MC you need to look at this one. I believe you'll appreciate it.

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I got hit by the bridge bug early doors, PzIV did a sharp right over the parapet and got stuck. So I tried again, gave all my vehicles either "Quick" or "Fast" commands and had no problems. Ten minutes in, only one casualty. Lots of white flags, dead Ami's, and the aforementioned truck is burning nicely.

Farhen Zie sur Maas!

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20 minutes ago, Attilaforfun said:

have you ever had a car chase in the dark while playing CM?

Actually.....Yes (well OK, not in the dark, but):

CLICKY

There are some very creative scenario designers out there!  ;)

Apologies to @theforger for the brief off topic.....Based on @Attilaforfun 's comments, I'm looking forward to settling down with this scenario even more.  B)

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Some great points and keep them coming. I wanted to get this out there "as it was" rather than wait for as near perfect as I could make it. Would stress it is only semi historical. And to BulletPoints comment yep the map is my own, part of the fun. Although I was inspired by the master maps,  moving that many units I felt I had to make some of the longer stretches of road a little more gamey to keep the pace/momentum going. 

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The Spitze probably would have had better troops and some Panthers too. In this semi historical scenario the KG spent more time fighting in Stavelot, capturing  the fuel dump, taking more casualties? before reaching La Gleize on the 19th, a day later than in reality. My decision was that I wanted to make it a compelling start without making it like a hot knife through butter. More of a gameplay decision than historical. Though to CM Vets it'll be a walk in the park.

Regarding the conditions freezing and muddy. During testing I was losing 2-4 vehicles due to bogging/breakdown throughout the scenario which I felt was ok, but understand the point about freezing negating the effects of mud. Felt it created an element of doubt/risk without crippling the attackers choice?

Regarding weather. I did testing on the effects of fog/mist. On the day in question in 1944 it was foggy. But unfortunately the game engine produced some quite unrealistic square shadow effects in crucial areas of the battlefield, so in the end I went with mist. I think the map looks aesthetically better with snow but my decision was a nod to semi-historical accuracy in the end.

Regarding start time. Because with mist the tank ranges were too long for the opening scenes, by starting in darkness at 8:30am, meant that visibility starts poor and improves gradually. Don't forget ALT-B to get some artificial light. The decision created the Keystone Cops Car chase for @Attilaforfun so job done! During the actual battle I think there were occasions where German units joined  or surprised the tail end of American columns, so that was an element I tried to incorporate into the scenario.

At some point I'd like to drive around the battlefield and see it all for myself!

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23 hours ago, theforger said:

And to BulletPoints comment yep the map is my own, part of the fun.

It's a really impressive piece of work. A bit more detail in the village areas would be nice, but I understand it's also a tradeoff with performance.

19 hours ago, theforger said:

Regarding the conditions freezing and muddy. During testing I was losing 2-4 vehicles due to bogging/breakdown throughout the scenario which I felt was ok, but understand the point about freezing negating the effects of mud. Felt it created an element of doubt/risk without crippling the attackers choice?

I think the main point is if you want to make the player anxious to leave the roads or not. As it is, I am able to bypass the roads, which is actually a good thing, because it means I have to plot much fewer movement orders. But from a gameplay perspective, sometimes interesting tactical situations can arise from constraining the player's armour.

For example, in the beginning of the scenario, just after the bridge there is a big bend in the road with some hedge where it would be a great place to put a bazooka team in ambush. I spent several minutes making sure it was clear before moving on, but actually it was just roleplaying a bit, because I knew I could just have cut off that road bend and gone straight over the frozen ground.

19 hours ago, theforger said:

Regarding weather. I did testing on the effects of fog/mist. On the day in question in 1944 it was foggy. But unfortunately the game engine produced some quite unrealistic square shadow effects in crucial areas of the battlefield, so in the end I went with mist.

 

I think you made the right choice. In case anybody wonders how this fog glitch looks:

270382739_CMFinalBlitzkrieg2019-01-1617-

 

Edited by Bulletpoint
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