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Tactical defeat in The Flank Guard - eh?


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I've just played an epic scenario in the Marines campaign where I am pitted against many Syrian nasties. In fact, the map is so small that within a few minutes it could be over if you place your men in the wrong positions or reveal them too early. I just finished this and received a tactical defeat yet I had only 1 men KIA with 4 injured and knocked out nearly everything the Syrians had to offer. I held the rear ground. I thought I did well! Yet it was a defeat. Curious.

The AAR suggests I secured the targets and the parameters and the Syrian side 'secured' the ground. But I disagree! I pushed them back off the map. They only had 22 men left at the end of play. So what is the trigger for failing this? Is it purely where they finish on the map, regardless of whether it is one man or the whole attacking force. They definitely got close, but I let them purposely before revealing my defence. I couldn't win if I started taking pot shots at distance!

Edit, by the way, the enemy surrendered! Go figure!

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I guess this is the 2nd mission in the campaign (at least if you won the first scenario), where you start on a hill with your spotter, which is about to get under heavy enemy artillery?

I had the same issue. I ambushed the Syrians and totally wiped them of the eart, apart from a few beggers that surrendered and they got a tacticaly victory for a 'breakthrough' although I did hold both roads until the end. :S

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The Syrian objectives in this one are "touch" objectives. Once the Syrians get to that point of the map, they get the points, and even if you later destroy them, they keep the points.

In real life, the units that reached so far into your rear area would have exited off the map, and you would not have destroyed them. Hence the tactical defeat. You are to keep them from reaching those points in the first place.

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The Syrian objectives in this one are "touch" objectives. Once the Syrians get to that point of the map, they get the points, and even if you later destroy them, they keep the points.

In real life, the units that reached so far into your rear area would have exited off the map, and you would not have destroyed them. Hence the tactical defeat. You are to keep them from reaching those points in the first place.

The map is so small that I don't think this can be won! You have very little time to organise anything, and with the potential of losing your spotter or machine gun teams on turn one due to random AI artillery (and the fact you can't move them much in the setup phase) makes this map impossible. I've tried it differently several times.

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The map is so small that I don't think this can be won! You have very little time to organise anything, and with the potential of losing your spotter or machine gun teams on turn one due to random AI artillery (and the fact you can't move them much in the setup phase) makes this map impossible. I've tried it differently several times.

Then try harder. Or try smarter. It certainly can be won.

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Heh although Im sure it can be won, I did hold the right plateau fully under my control for the full length of the mission. Any Syrian shoving his head over the ridge got it shot off ;)

I did hide for the BRDM's untill they got close, since 5.56 vs BRDM with 14.5 has no effect.

On the left side my reinforcements in the canyon were rushed (when I wasn't looking) by a brdm full of syrians but they ran into a wall of two AAV's with fully dismounted troops. All of them died on a small spot vs one casualty on my side :)

[...] My question is, how far from the map edge are those objectives? I intentionally did hold ground where I chose to hold, except from the quick Syrian rush perhaps. I was going to move my dismounts to guard the entry of the canyon, but instead they just held it from within.

The poor men didn't have any chance to pass through my lines! :D

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The touch objective doesn't extend far off the map edge, from what I recall, but if the Syrians reach the little canyon, then there is a chance that they just "touched" it.

It's been a long time I played this one and it was designed when 1.10 was the state of the art. It's possible that the mission got even tougher with the current patches. Dang, if I had more time I would be itching to replay that one myself.

Maybe I can at least find the time to post it as a standalone in the Repository so you guys can tweak it or try different approaches.

Martin

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*** FILMED IN SPOILER-VISION! ***

In this scenario, reverse-slope defensive positions and 40-meter cover arcs are your friends. Using these tactics, even the Syrian tanks aren't all that much of a threat. Just keep your AAVs out of sight so your Javelin teams don't get their reloads blown to smithereens.

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Okay I got myself a minor tactical victory but i had to fight real hard! I had to be aggressive, far more so than I had before. I lost a lot of men too. (11 KIA and 14 injured). I ran two squads down into the wooded area and hid them there and waited for the enemy infantry to appear. Problem is, for me at least, everything happens so quickly in this scenario that you don't have time to prepare a proper defense. My spotter survived the arty bursts this time, although he didn't have good LOS so I planned a linear attack to occur in five minutes, and set the line just down from the arrival point of the enemy reinforcements. Call that cheating if you like, but it slowed them down when the majority of the men arrived under a hail of 60mm mortar bursts. I couldn't make good effective use of the 155mm though, so I just plotted an area attack roughly where I anticipated the enemy to be and fired the lot. At least the airbusrts would have caused panic. My infantry slowed the advance significantly, but my arty was way off the mark. My AT assets knocked out one tank before they got knocked out at point blank themselves. I managed to save one exit point, (the ravine) but lost the other, although I was awarded a minor victory which was a first for me!

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Problem is, for me at least, everything happens so quickly in this scenario that you don't have time to prepare a proper defense.

According to the story line it's a surprise attack by the Syrians on a thinly held line from a direction where no attack is really expected. Your guys are more on patrol duty with observation posts than having a proper line of defense.

and set the line just down from the arrival point of the enemy reinforcements. Call that cheating if you like

If you replay the scenario a couple of times you should notice that there are several AI plans in force. While the reinforcement points themselves cannot be changed (a limitation in the editor which hopefully we can get rid of in some of the next versions), the enemy will react quite differently depending on the chosen plan. Sometimes they will charge right to the objective, sometimes they'll take it slower, and there are several different paths, too (including a sneaky one up the middle). Of course, if you're busy scrambling into position and panicky to set up a defense you may not notice much of that ;)

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  • 3 weeks later...

It can be won decisively. I wish I could give some insight into how I did it as I played it some 9 months ago. For all my games, I record the scenario outcomes in a spreadsheet. Checking the spreadsheet, my best showing for The Flank Ground was 2 KIA, 1 WIA Blue casualties verses 49 KIA, 29 WIA, 16 MIA, 2 Tanks and 6 APC casualties for the Syrians.

Sorry, I don't recall readily how I managed that outcome or what the AI plan was but it was playing through the scenario a third time, after getting two minor victories in the earlier two playthroughs.

Keep at it. If I can do it, others can.

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there are several different paths, too (including a sneaky one up the middle)

That sneaky up-the-middle approach can yield a Red victory, even if Blue suffers only a handful of casualties and decimates the Syrian force in the process. Keeping your infantry units in reverse-slope defensive positions protects them from direct fire from the T-72s and such, but the Syrian infantry will (if using the sneaky up-the-middle-approach) advance up the slope and go firm in the dead ground where only the PLT CO and the FO (if you have them in their starting locations) can see them. Evidently, gaining a foothold on the slope means that the Syrians have achieved a breakthrough. *shrug*

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  • 2 years later...

I had trouble with it too but I managed to gain a victory (even though I recommend defeat as it gives you an extra mission in the campaign ;) ).

Since it is a matter of how far the syrian get, the screens below show how far they could get while USMC still obtained victory:

11110.jpg

22210.jpg

PS: a bit late in the game, but if it helps...

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