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Mission to Maas


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Please be assured that this is a terrific scenario and am enjoying it.  I do think ( if you have the energy) that a v3 could feature significant improvements (see below).  

I have greatly enjoyed the recon aspect - moving down forest roads worrying about ambushes.  But, in the end the units met little enemy ambushes and my recommendation is to add more a) in order to slow the German advance down, (it's very easy to start assaulting the 2nd objective and to reach Stoumont outskirts in the first 90 minutes.) and b) ambushes are fun.

I like the mixture of units, but, was surprised at the Grilles' poor performance.  They do well in some situations.  But, also they seemed unable to hit a 3 story building at over 500 meters and their shot fell hundreds of meters short.  In another instant when they seemed to have clear LOS to a target they undershot and blew a hole under two Panthers that were only a dozen meters away!  (Fortunately, the Pz V's didn't seem damaged.)  Since Grilles only have a dozen or so 150mm rounds every wasted round hurts.  This is not your scenario design problem, but something is not right with the Grilles' performance.

 

********* POSSIBLE SPOILERS ***********

 

The briefing needs to make it clear that ONLY the initial engineer units have breach/demo charges.  I used up the initial engineer units to assault La Gleize, expecting the reinforcement engineers to have demo charges for the next objectives.  Now am short of demo charges.

It is too easy to simply turn left on the road east of La Gleize and travel South, cross the RR tracks and bridges.   There is no enemy opposition or terrain obstacles other than a weak ambush at La Gleize station to slow the German advance.  It is impossible for the KT's to use one of the (small) bridges, but the KT's can simply cross the stream near the bridge.  So far, not a single German vehicle has bogged once and none been immobilized by the terrrain.

Recommend that you add terrain that is harder to traverse and either stops the KT's completely, or makes this route a lot slower by risking bogging and possible immobilization.  Perhaps also make both bridges unable to carry the KT's?  In this way it would be more tempting to go through the more direct roads through the woods west of La Gleize.  But, more effective ambushes are needed on those woods roads as well as on the southern route.

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The more I think about it, a few relatively simple changes per suggestions above would change this v good scenario into a great scenario.  I will lay off playing it any more in the hope that a v3 will be offered.  

Would also be interested in what other players think.  theforger should be very pleased with what he has done so far.

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16 hours ago, Erwin said:

I like the mixture of units, but, was surprised at the Grilles' poor performance.  They do well in some situations.  But, also they seemed unable to hit a 3 story building at over 500 meters and their shot fell hundreds of meters short.  In another instant when they seemed to have clear LOS to a target they undershot and blew a hole under two Panthers that were only a dozen meters away!  (Fortunately, the Pz V's didn't seem damaged.)  Since Grilles only have a dozen or so 150mm rounds every wasted round hurts.  This is not your scenario design problem, but something is not right with the Grilles' performance.

I believe they were deliberately made extremely inaccurate, to reflect their role as artillery, not assault guns.

If you make them fire indirectly, you will see an interesting thing - they will fire very slowly but extremely accurately. All on-map artillery seem to suffer from a bug that make them fire at the same slow speed and with nearly pinpoint accuracy.

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2 hours ago, Bulletpoint said:

All on-map artillery seem to suffer from a bug that make them fire at the same slow speed and with nearly pinpoint accuracy.

Have never noticed that and it's very useful to know.  Have avoided using the Grilles in an indirect role as artillery nearly always wastes a few rounds on spotting and since the Grilles only have a dozen or so 150mm shells it seemed more prudent to only use em in a direct fire mode. 

A related issue with artillery is that when one selects multiple batteries, each battery wastes shells doing its own spotting - as opposed to just one gun/battery spots and then all the others use the same FFE coordinates. 

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One thing that annoyed me. The player's reinforcements arrive by and large in column. And when looking for a likely area for an enemy counter-attack I set my troops up in good ambush positions along the road. Only for the counterattack force to arrive all in one go spread out over a fairly large area pretty much surrounding my troops, with predictable results. I was not a happy bunny, and hit Cease Fire. 

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21 minutes ago, Warts 'n' all said:

I set my troops up in good ambush positions along the road. Only for the counterattack force to arrive all in one go spread out over a fairly large area pretty much surrounding my troops, with predictable results

That looks like good design imo.  I want the designer/AI to surprise me so I keep on my toes.  Predictable/obvious = boring. 

That's a reason I appealed for the forger to do a v3 with more ambushes as currently it seems much too easy and quick to reach Stoumont and the other southern objective by driving along the roads with little/no resistance.

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The question is how much off-road travel was possible and actually happened in the Ardennes?  My sense is that it is very easy to travel offroad in "mission to Maas" with everything including the KT's without risk of bogging, let alone immobilization.  Is it too easy?  

In the Bulge, were units much more constrained to use roads than in this CM scenario?  

Of course there are playability issues as well.  Most players want to have fun coupled with a sense of verisimilitude.  This mission is a lot of fun.  

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On 2/20/2020 at 3:39 PM, Erwin said:

The question is how much off-road travel was possible and actually happened in the Ardennes?  My sense is that it is very easy to travel offroad in "mission to Maas" with everything including the KT's without risk of bogging, let alone immobilization.  Is it too easy?  

In the Bulge, were units much more constrained to use roads than in this CM scenario?  

He dialled down the risk of bogging because we asked for it, for the sake of playability in a game that has no road movement command. The various fences etc will still track your tanks though, if you don't take care to avoid them.

 

On 2/19/2020 at 8:36 PM, Erwin said:
On 2/19/2020 at 8:11 PM, Warts 'n' all said:

I set my troops up in good ambush positions along the road. Only for the counterattack force to arrive all in one go spread out over a fairly large area pretty much surrounding my troops, with predictable results

That looks like good design imo.  I want the designer/AI to surprise me so I keep on my toes.  Predictable/obvious = boring. 

I think what the Limey is saying is that he doesn't like all the enemy troops suddenly appearing at the same time as if by magic. Even a strong armoured force has to travel into field of view gradually.

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2 hours ago, Bulletpoint said:

all the enemy troops suddenly appearing at the same time as if by magic.

Ok, yes that makes sense...  I didn't see how the first attack from the N arrived so was not aware if they all appeared instantly as if by magic.  Another set of reinforcements I saw came from within woods, so I didn't have a problem with that.  

 

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2 hours ago, Bulletpoint said:

He dialled down the risk of bogging because we asked for it, for the sake of playability in a game that has no road movement command. The various fences etc will still track your tanks though, if you don't take care to avoid them.

The motivation behind that is understandable.  (HINT: Use low value vehicles to break thru fences and other obstructions so that the valuable vehicles can pass thru with no damage to tracks.) 

However, perhaps offroad has been made too easy?  As a veteran CM1 player used to playing with a reinforced Regimental TF, am used to moving large numbers of units from one end of a huge map to the other (altho' yes it is a PITA without a "Formation Follow" or "Road Convoy" command).   

I simply feel that currently this scenario makes it too quick and easy to reach the far town objectives by using the S road and start assaulting within the first 60-90 minutes.  That seemed too fast for a 4 hour scenario in which mobility should be a challenge.  Currently, one does not even have to 100% control La Gleize to use the main road to the West and Stoumont. 

An additional suggestion to those made above is that to better motivate one to control 100% of La Gleize, one should not be able to access or use the road west to Stoumont until La Gleize is fully under control.

Edited by Erwin
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8 hours ago, Warts 'n' all said:

To suddenly find my troops surrounded was no fun

Ok, I see what you mean...  Either you moved your units faster than I did, or you encountered a different AI plan. 

"Mission to Maas" is a much better than average scenario already.  But, it could be a great scenario.  I am hoping that the forger will make a few improvements and release a v3 as I would very much like to try it again from the start.  (I feel like I already know too much about the current version so that the surprise element will be missing if I replay this version.)

 

 

Edited by Erwin
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2 hours ago, Erwin said:

"Mission to Maas" is a much better than average scenario already.  But, it could be a great scenario.  I am hoping that the forger will make a few improvements and release a v3 as I would very much like to try it again from the start.  (I feel like I already know too much about the current version so that the surprise element will be missing if I replay this version.)

Did you manage to actually win it? I found it gets much more difficult towards the end. I never managed to take the final objective.

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I stopped after 90 minutes to make the comments above.  Maybe it gets harder after that.  But, my sense was that that it was too easy and fast to use the southern road route and reach Stoumont and be well into assaulting the other southern objective in 60-90 minutes.   

My suggestion was to add a few more ambushes on all likely used roads.  They don't have to be big ambushes, but enough to make the player deploy and slow him down when using the roads.  Also, make the minor roads a bit worse so 1) vehicles go slower, and 2) they actually bog and even immobilize occasionally - esp the KT's.  Currently one can drive the KT's along the southern route and cross the river without using the small bridge (which cannot be used by the KT's).

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  • 7 months later...
1 hour ago, Anonymous_Jonze said:

Is this only an Axis vs AI scenario?

Every stock scenario that ships with the game can be played as Axis vs. AI.  Also the scenario Depot has Axis vs AI scenarios.  Below is the link for CMFB scenarios.

https://www.thefewgoodmen.com/tsd3/category/cm-final-blitzkrieg/cm-final-blitzkrieg-scenarios/

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  • 2 weeks later...

it was not designed to be overly historical or to play H2H.

It was designed to try and give a flavour of the whole battle in a single scenario. Think Battle of the Bulge the Movie 😀.

Saying that I have no problem with anyone amending and republishing as a H2H scenario should they wish to do so.

 

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