Playing 42West Historically (Full Version)

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lparkh -> Playing 42West Historically (1/7/2013 4:50:26 AM)

Is it possible to play 42west (and 44 west for that matter) historically in the sense of not trying to achieve air superiority but rather survive via AA support. In other words deal with what the German dealt with historically (at least by 1944 if not before). I'm at Dieppe and trying to decide if I have to go down the traditional "heavy Luftwaffe" path or could play more historically.
Thank you,




Dragoon -> RE: Playing 42West Historically (1/7/2013 1:36:52 PM)

I can only give you a theoretical answer because I never have done that, but from experience I can already tell you this path will become expensive, cost you initiative and certainly nothing for the faint-hearted.
For two reasons: First high losses. You will need to deploy a lot of units to adequately protect your arty and tanks from air raids. Even a 88mm AA with range 3 will only provide defense fire for adjoined units. Only SPAA units to come into question to provide defense for a mobile force. The AI won't wait for you to unpack your towed AA guns. Anyway, SPAA-units have very low ground defense values compared to hard attack values of tanks, because of this the AI will recklessness attack them. While late game SPAA-units have high enough defense to resist arty fire they will still blow up when attacked by tanks and this with SPG's backing them up. All this problems can be avoided when using fighters.
While the AI will certainly suicide attack your defending fighters with SPAA units, their air attack values compared to most fighter ground defense means they take only minor loses. Next turn you will retaliated and the AI's SPAA is gone for good.

The second reason is about what I just said. SPAA air attack vales compared to aircraft ground defense values are so low that you will not reliable destroy incoming aircraft, even when mass attacking. A 14 strength FW-190 fighter may do as much as 3 times the damage as a 14 strength Ostwind SPAA. As result enemy planes will possibly be able to retreat, refit and come back in strength for an other attack.

An other point that may speak against this tactic is that you lose the scouting and ground attack capabilities of your fighters. While the AI air force like to attack in waves, there is usually depending how fast you dispose the wave 2-4 turns time for your fighters to conduct reconnaissance or strafing missions before the next wave arrives. I like to send my fighters to scout rough terrain, reduce entrenchment levels or strafe arty.

That said you may screw all this and just go for it anyway to to role-play your campaign. I myself like to use inferior units because I value variety higher than uniformity of an all Hummel, Panther, Me-262 core force. While powerful it's also boring to look at. Of course in return I pay with a shortened life-span.




lparkh -> RE: Playing 42West Historically (1/7/2013 4:44:51 PM)

Now that was what I call a thorough and well thought out answer. Thank you very much. Well I think you have me chickening out at this point. I like to play iron man and that is challenging enough with the surprises they throw at one in the more recent releases. So I will go down the heavy luftwaffe path.
Long ago I did pull off the AA route in Allied General with the Soviets. In fact their air force was so weak early war that it seemed the only viable strategy.
Regarding costs, it would be nice if they worked on the equipment file costs so one can't afford all stellar units. The user community for PG2 and Open General has done this. I believe there might be such a file out there for PC, but then of course the scenarios aren't balanced for that.





Dragoon -> RE: Playing 42West Historically (1/9/2013 3:16:46 PM)

Oh, I fondly remember the Russian campaign from Allied General. The first few mission where the hardest in all General series. Especially the first Finland mission, then what was it, I think Pozan and Leningrad defense. In Pozan the only thing between you and complete destruction was this river eastern edge of the map. I haven't played this scenario for 10 years and I still remember details. This extreme hard challenge right of the bat was so remarkable. As frustrating it was, so rewarding was it when you finally got a DV.

If you ever try to go mass SPAA instead of a fighter screen you could also try chess mode(check the cheat code page). With chess mode enabled your combat results will be equal to the combat prediction. Now you may wonder why should this help you. If you check the combat results detail page you will see depending on the unit attack rating and experience you will have an average kill chance of 20% per dice. Now thing is with low kill chances like this your actual results will be more likely fall below the prediction than above. With chess mode enabled you will have a much more reliable AA defense, and what I find a bit cheesy, you can exactly calculate ahead how many units / attacks it will take to destroy a certain enemy. Of course chess mode will be bad for you if you field many late game, experienced, overstrength tanks and fighters. Because they have usually a quite high kill chance per dice, thus they will be more likely perform above the combat prediction. This is what I found out when processing hundredths of screenshot from combat result details.




lparkh -> RE: Playing 42West Historically (1/9/2013 5:17:59 PM)

Yet further interesting analysis. Yes I fondly remember that campaign as well for the reasons you cited. Eventually I did develop a soviet air force late war. I suppose the intermediate way to go would be to allow myself a small elite airfroce (FW190 etc) and then do air defense. Realistic to some degree too.
But given iron man and their surprises I suppsoe I should just given up and play to win :-( Hard enough!




deducter -> RE: Playing 42West Historically (1/9/2013 8:26:26 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: lparkh

Is it possible to play 42west (and 44 west for that matter) historically in the sense of not trying to achieve air superiority but rather survive via AA support. In other words deal with what the German dealt with historically (at least by 1944 if not before). I'm at Dieppe and trying to decide if I have to go down the traditional "heavy Luftwaffe" path or could play more historically.
Thank you,


Yes, it is possible to play the Western Front DLCs historically! I direct you to the Unit Revisions mods:

http://www.slitherine.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=147&t=30708

There are hundreds of changes make in the equipment and rules files to make for a more historically accurate and challenging gameplay experience. I'm currently finishing up an updated manual and a new version for release for GC44West. On the Western Front, the Allies will have infantry and planes roughly equivalent to their German counterparts, but somewhat weaker armor.




VPaulus -> RE: Playing 42West Historically (1/9/2013 9:07:43 PM)


quote:

ORIGINAL: deducter


quote:

ORIGINAL: lparkh

Is it possible to play 42west (and 44 west for that matter) historically in the sense of not trying to achieve air superiority but rather survive via AA support. In other words deal with what the German dealt with historically (at least by 1944 if not before). I'm at Dieppe and trying to decide if I have to go down the traditional "heavy Luftwaffe" path or could play more historically.
Thank you,


Yes, it is possible to play the Western Front DLCs historically! I direct you to the Unit Revisions mods:

http://www.slitherine.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=147&t=30708

There are hundreds of changes make in the equipment and rules files to make for a more historically accurate and challenging gameplay experience. I'm currently finishing up an updated manual and a new version for release for GC44West. On the Western Front, the Allies will have infantry and planes roughly equivalent to their German counterparts, but somewhat weaker armor.

I was precisely thinking on your mod, deducter, when I read this thread. [:)]




lparkh -> RE: Playing 42West Historically (1/10/2013 4:51:44 PM)

Thank you. I see that your mod has garnered considerable attention. Potentially appealing though I have the feeling I will be slaughtered now in iron man mode :-)




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