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CM:BN Beta AAR/DAR Bois de Baugin - German side


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To keep himself amused, the Sherman engages an FO team that’d been sent up to the top edge of The Orchard to retrieve a ‘schreck from a ‘schreck team that’d already been eliminated there.

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In retrospect, trying to retrieve that one may not have been a very smart move, but I’m starting to get desperate for AT weapons. Strangely, there was no explosion when this round arrived – I wonder if he fired an AP round.

By this stage of the battle, the PaK only has a total of 7 rounds remaining, including those carried by the ammo team – 4 x HE and 3 x AP. That’s not a lot of death and mayhem to deal out, and I suspect it’s most useful role is as a threat in being. I consider moving the gun to another position to confound Elvis. Earlier I saw Elvis pushing one of his own guns about, and the crews get them moving reasonably quickly. But what dissuades me in the end is a combination of the belief that I can pierce the Sherman’s armour at 60m, and the disincentive of a packup time of over three minutes – the smoke is likely to be long-gone by before they can get out of there, leaving them desperately vulnerable.

Anyway, after waiting and waiting and waiting, the smoke finally clears. I have the gun lines up on the exact known position of the Sherman, and so just seconds after sighting it the round is on it’s way

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(larger image) (The PaK is unskinned in this beta build)

But the round fails to penetrate. Given the hit location right on the rounded edge of the turret roof that probably isn’t surprising, but it’s still a bitter setback. Two AP rounds left.

The next round flies high over the top of the Sherman as it backs away in a panic, popping yet more smoke. One AP round left.

There’s some consolation in that at least the Sherman is scared of the PaK.

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Uh oh. Hold the consolation. The crew all survive, but that last AP round is worthless. PROTIP: not noticing the second tank in overwatch while engaging the first tank is bad for your health.

I just realized that the Germans don't have backpacks. Not a nit-pick, I'm simply curious. Now that I think of it, rarely do you see pictures of German infantry wearing backpacks. You always see prominently the y-strap of course, the gas mask, zeltbahn, canteen, bread bag, ect., but no backpack... Does anyone have any information on their use/practice during WW2? Thanks!

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The Germans had what is commonly called an "A Frame" that clips onto the back of the Y straps and the belt. A bunch of kit was strapped to this, but not a backpack. Since Jon and Elvis are using a fairly old Beta, we've fixed a few issues with the soldiers. One of which is the heavy weapons crews have less kit on them than standard soldiers. Reason being is that they needed less kit on them since they had transport of some type (even if horse drawn).

Steve

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23: Watching the Clock

La Campagne has fallen, all my anti-tank weapons are gone, and my men won’t follow orders any more. That leaves only one thing to do – withdraw deep into the woods, and cling on to the terrain objectives on Hills 154, 144, and 148.

On 154 this is fairly simple. Elvis’ forces have been severely chastened up here, and I’m a fair way ahead of the edge of the objective, so I pull pack and string out my forces so they’re just ahead of the edge. I don’t really expect him to follow up, but you never know. A couple of depleted units are sent to the rear to keep an eye on things there in case Elvis tries to sneak in around the back.

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As it happens, the Bois remains deathly quiet, which seems appropriate.

Hill 148 to the rear is also simple, but for a different reason. Throughout the battle I have kept 148 pretty much denuded of troops. There was an HMG team, but that got eliminated about the time la Campagne fell, leaving just a Mortar Platoon HQ. I order them away from the treeline, deep into the woods, and hope that Elvis doesn’t send anyone up there sniffing around. He doesn’t.

Hill 144 is where things get tricky. I’m already defending on the forward edge of the objective, so there’s no room for a major pullback to leave some space between our forces. I do the best I can, pulling back a few metres, and lining up right on the forward edge of the objective.

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(larger image) (trees removed)

Elvis puts in a couple of halfhearted probes, heartlessly sending unhorsed drivers and HMG teams forward to their deaths. Nothing is gained except more bloodshed.

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I see some of his men moving to my rear along the diagonal, so move several small teams back to harass them, including the sniper. Of course, he’s run out of ammo again by now. Still, then do manage to inflict a little delay, but they’re very twitchy, and run away at even light return fire.

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Then, suddenly, right on full time Elvis mounts a full-on attack on Hill 144. It costs him a lot of casualties, but my troops will barely even defend now, and he comes within inches of getting some of his troops onto my objective.

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(larger image) (trees removed)

We agree to a ceasefire, and the battle ends at 1541.

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24: PBEM Filesizes

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Someone asked about the filesizes - this graph shows the changing size of the files Elvis sent to me. It does NOT include the files I sent to him, but typically they were within a very small delta of the sizes shown here. The total for 82 turns (incl setup) was 1.44GB. Including both the incoming and outgoing files you’re looking at the thick end of 3GB.

There are a couple of caveats here that we need to be clear about though. This was played using a Beta code, and includes code which will not be in the final release. Similarly, it does not yet include code – and graphics – that will be in the final release. I don’t know for certain what that will do to file sizes, but my sense is that it’ll overall make them smaller. Also this was a fairly big battle. Elvis had a battalion group, and I had a company-plus, all on a good sized map. There will certainly be larger battles, but I suspect this will be on the upper part of the size bellcurve.

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Eagerly awaiting the release -- and patiently awaiting the inevitable treatment of the Ostfront...

...and North Africa and the Mediterranean.

Seriously, though, many thanks for taking the trouble to do this, Jon.

It was a fun read and an excellent warm-up for the release, which is now even more eagerly awaited.

R

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Jon, you played the role of the dastardly Hun to perfection, plucky yet destined to loose to the forces of truth and justice! Seriously, your efforts have been much appreciated, it has brightened the gloomy winter nights magnificently.

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