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Intriguing Question but Controversial


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I introduced a friend to the joys of CM:BB over the weekend. He asked me an intriguing question. I am going to pass it alone. Understand I am not trying to start a controversy. I was just mulling ovoer how to answer His question. So here goes:

If points were no object what would be the best units to select on either side. And what units are the most effecient ie. The most bang for the buck.

I know these kinds of things would vary based on the situation and the mix of other units involved and the enemies units.

Still I wonder what would be your choices? If points were unlimited what would you purchase and what untis do you think supply the most usefulness for their cost?

No fights but give me your ideas and I will pass them along to my friend.

Pastor Scott

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It's possible to have a go at answering this, but it won't mean much without the specifications the others have asked you for.

For example, I think the MG42 is the most effective LMG/ HMG in the game - I'd choose that to arm my forces with over the M1919, the Maxim, the MG34, etc. I'd take the M2 .50 cal for some extra penetrating power though, and the SG43 packs a neat punch as well.

Tank-wise I find T-34/85s or late Shermans (Shermen? ;) ) such as 'Easy-Eights' provide the best general utility per unit cost. For that reason I'd take either of these over Panthers, Tigers, etc. if I didn't know what I may be facing...

Soviet SMG infantry is damned useful in a close fight. German infantry carry Panzerfausts as standard and late-war Sturmtruppen are very versatile. Panzerschrecks appear to be more lethal under my command than Bazookas. I prefer SPW 251s to American HTs, except for some of the HMG-armed versions; I always find the odd M17 (I think - the one with the quad .50 cal mount) very useful for keyholed infantry-suppression/ AA duties...

From that I think you can get a basic (but far from complete) idea what units I find effective in-game. Is that the sort of thing you mean? What would everyone choose if they were 'building' an army of their own?

[ December 25, 2007, 03:25 PM: Message edited by: Tux ]

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Most bang for the buck...gah. You can either start by saying what's the tactical situation, what are you facing, what's the weather blah blah...but stepping away from what will be a never ending argument -- an argument which is the main reason we all play wargames -- what given most conditions would I look to take with me?

All answers are for in-game.

</font>

  • T34-76; for the off road speed and the HE.</font>
  • MG34; for the ammo load and f/p.</font>
  • Light flak; for the moral hit against ability to be spotted</font>
  • Snipers; for the invisibility and ability to do real damage to high value units</font>
  • Churchill XI (CMAK); to make your opponent bring out his cats or die</font>
  • 6dps; the little gun that can</font>
  • Tiger; "For when you absolutely, positively"...etc</font>
  • VT arty (CMAK); It's like "infantry-be-gone"</font>
  • 150mm inf gun; "Sergi, look - it's a shell!" "What where?" "There, coming straight for us!" "No way, it must be a bees nest on the move or something" "No! It's a..." BOOOOM.</font>
  • Universal Carrier; "nah, I'm never going to need all these"</font>

YMMV.

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I would vote for Anti-tank rifles, (good at killing all those German HTs) Russian tank hunters post with the RPG, T-34/85, Tiger I, any PzIV with 75mm L48 and my all time excellent all rounder the 76mm ZIS3 gun. For infantry give me Russian SMG troops every time and Pioneers of any nation.

Also hard to use but good bang for buck - the Hetzer.

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You are all nuts. lol.

Assuming the sensible bang for buck question is being asked, the front of the line is...

The uberStuG, F/8 or early G model. It slices the T-34s several have recommended, effortlessly, and costs the same. Easily the single most used "bang for buck" purchase in CM.

In 1941, the KV-1. In 1942-3, uberStuG. In 1943, also Tiger I - expensive but often worth it in a larger game, in that era. Late, Hetzers are good, and SU-100s. Late model IS-2 can also be worth the price (bounces serious AP shell) - take veteran quality to manage cower issues.

All in the category of hard to kill armor. When it is front armor only, especially if due to slope effect, also tends to be cheap. (All around invulnerable and turreted armor is useful, but fully priced).

In 1941, the Somua for the Germans. It is invulnerable to 45mm and lower and dirt cheap.

Cheap flame vehicles to KO stubborn infantry - Panzer II flame early, British Wasp, Russian OT-34, 1943 model (assuming rariety is off).

HE chucker vehicles, e.g. the StuH. Large ammo load and big shell to blast down every building or clear every trench. Hard to beat large trench system defenses without them. Best types have front armor enough to withstand stealthy AP weapons (like ATRs and light flak).

Russian SMG infantry, especially the motorized 7 man squad variety. So cheap you can buy them as vets routinely.

The ampulet for Russians 1941-2. Before the Germans get 80mm thick armor, it is an effective infantry AT weapon. Penetrates plates up to 50mm reliable, and hits reliably out to 200 meters. As good as a bazooka that way. Put one in each major infantry position.

The sIG, best HE chucker going. Just try to keep it alive after the first few minutes. If you find that difficult for any gun, take 2-3 leIGs instead. Indeed, "lots of little guns" is extremely effective on defense, generally.

The Russians can get HE chucker performance from the 76mm mountain gun. Better AP performance than a 45mm ATG, and the same deep ammo load of the Russian infantry guns (2-3 times as much HE as the long 76s). Won't kill 50mm plates, but gets through 30mm stuff at 500 yards with high side angle, which is a much more common shot for a hidden gun.

German 20mm quad flak. Costs what an HMG team costs, pretty much, with much higher firepower. Stealthy shooting with strong infantry killing effect even into cover, perfect accuracy and high ROF. Also protects against aircraft of course.

Russian 37mm AA. Much less stealthy than the previous, but penetrates tank sides at range, high ROF and accuracy. And can wreck even tanks it can't penetrate, by accumulating track or gun damage. High infantry killing FP etc as above. All for the same cost as 1 76mm ATG. (Take just one).

Before ATRs are everywhere, the Russian 50 cal MG is worth buying, 1-2 per defense. Low ammo load compared to normal MGs, but can KO the SPWs and PSWs that Germans like to use when they don't expect ATRs yet.

German 28mm sPzB. Excellent AP penetration for very low price, and stealthy shooter too. Can kill early T-34s through the turret at 400 yards, while remaining unspotted.

Puppchen. The gamiest tank killer going, with 2-3 times the range and 50% more accuracy than a schreck, for about the same price. Kills anything it hits. Schrecks are pretty good to start with - range limited but reasonably mobile.

US bazookas. 14 points. By 7 of them on top of what you get with your infantry. Put them everywhere, someone will get a flank.

Russian 57mm ATG. The Tiger stopper and StuG killer. Much better than the long 76mm guns.

Lend lease armor for the Russians, specifically the Churchill, Valentine IX with 57mm gun (dirt cheap too), and to a lesser extent Shermans (pricier). The first is thicker armor than you can get otherwise, and the others kill 80mm fronts when the Germans aren't expecting it. The better AP performance of the Sherman compared to the T-34 is well worth the price difference, especially vs. StuGs.

Sturmovik. 6 strafing passes, 2 shots per pass, with 23mm that penetrate anything less than a Tiger and can break tracks even on those. Yes it is expensive, but so is German armor. Real risk is does the German player buy flak?

El Cheapo air support of the many strafe variety, like the German Me-109F. Particularly useful when the enemy takes light armor (German SPWs or early war Russian lights e.g.)

SPW 251/2 for bottomless mortar HE for gunkilling, easily relocates and fires from full cover. Just be careful to reposition in dead ground and always have a spotter.

Russian high level FOs taken as conscripts and used for planned map fire. The 152mm gun and 122mm gun can be bought for 64 and 70 points respectively. Conscript quality makes no difference with map fire - reaction time is also not a factor. 20 big or 30 just nasty shells for those prices.

Russian 300mm rocket FO, again bought as conscripts and used for map fire. Costs what two of the previous cost, but truely impressive destruction, if the enemy has any kind of force density under the footprint. Use for attacks, or delay a bit (with Q key) to let the enemy get under the whole footprint.

Multiple TRPs combined with very heavy arty. TRP arty fire comes down within the minute regardless of caliber. A big FO (e.g. German 170 mm, Russian 152mm) can drizzle in single flights of shells that will still clobber anything.

American tank destroyers for their superior AP, compared to plain Shermans or expensive long model Shermans. Especially once T ammo is available. The Jackson (90mm) was the best in CMBO. Achilles (Brit 17 pdr) is also good.

SU-152s - clobber infantry and good cat killing ability, not that expensive. Worth veteran quality to avoid cower issues and to get first round hits (long reload time, so shoot and scoot).

Dinky little MG armor, especially early in the war. Bring out late to move when all the AT weapons are dead and the infantry ragged out and slow - or use as risk armor earlier to reveal enemy guns, under mortar overwatch. Also use for spotting sound contact MGs. Light radio car for Germans e.g., M-20 scout car for US, etc. Very cheap, useful if not thrown away.

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Thank you JasonC that is exactly the kind of post I was hoping to see in regards to this. Many of your comments confirmed my thoughts. Hard questions I know because there are so many variables. But felt like I needed to give it a shot to help out a true rookie who seems about to be hooked for life like the rest of us.

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