ORIGINAL: Central Blue
For now I am fixing the TOE's and battalion combat teams. The game is a lot of fun, but little things are driving me crazy, like the US armored assault gun platoon gallivanting about like tanks, missing heavy weapons, etc. I hope the Germans and Brits are in better shape.
BFTB force estabs will generally not follow established TO&E's. Many elements like mortars, HMG's, etc. were removed from HW platoons/companies and parsed out to line units for game purposes. Other weapons and vehicles were distributed to/from HQ's and bases to work better with the system.
Go for it but be careful where you go - we had some of the best of the best working on the estab data, and went back and forth ad nauseum to come up with a working balance between playability and historical "paper values".
Weapon ROF was also reviewed, argued and rebutted several times. In the end, Dave O'Conner's explanation of the combat code and how it works with the estab values usually put us back in our places.
I might be more careful if the editor didn't make it so easy to make changes so quickly. If I break it I reinstall it. It's not rocket science, and I'm not at the office.
I do miss my m1917 machine guns from the heavy weapons platoon. The un-armed M20 was missing from the tank destroyer units, and frankly, those TOE's were a mess. The count of vehicles seems without rhyme or reason. If you must parcel out the 57mm AT gun, why not parcel out its prime mover? For now I have put the 57's back into Battalion HQ where their transport is.
And if weapons counts are going to include assets from the maintenance platoon and what not (which seems to be the case) then you have to count the people that would have served those weapons or shouldered their rifle if those crew served weapons were threatened.
However, I don't add the mechanics to the infantry count. Pioneer and recon units do get added where they existed, such as the US battalion pioneer platoon. There have been some guesses. The recon value of the US platoon is one scout per squad, and the platoon guide, so that's a downgrade from the stock value.
The only thing I am leaving out of my revised units are the various baggage trains and their weapons, if any, because I assume that those are the units I keep receiving unhappy messages about. No hot food today men. Our supply column was 100% wiped out.
I have also renamed all of the units into a style friendlier to my eyes, such as Tank Destroyer Platoon, Self Propelled M10, March 1944 -- the date to indicate which TOE or KStN is being used. I am assuming I will be playing the game long enough to get past the TOE's required for the stock scenarios. I don't have equivalent sources for the Brits, but I will eyeball them according to sources I trust.
The only thing I have done with the weapons data so far is to list the correct weights for the various projectiles according to TM 9-2005 1942, TM 9 1901 1944, and TM 9 1985-3 1953, among others.
Since I have the data on projectile weight, and filling weight, I would like to examine the burst radius numbers. In the case of the artillery pieces I have looked at, the burst radius seem to be the diameter of the tube * .14666666. I don't know what their exact formula was, but I can understand why this was done and why it generally works. So I am not complaining.
But I have the time to make it more accurate if I understood the correct formula to plug the data into. So, for example, the German 105mm GR 38 weighed 15.004835 kilos and was filled with 1360.777 grams of burster versus the US 105mm HE M1 at 14.97 kilos and 2177.243. This information was relatively easy to plug into Kogers' TOAW, but it's not exactly easy to find on google how to convert the known information into meters. My search results have ended up littered with wizards and nukes. So I won't make any changes here until I can get some guidance.
Just to be clear, it's not like I expect wildly significant differences to appear in most cases. It's mainly that I have worked with data for 25 years now and I am comfortable with going after more and better where and when I can.
Once I have a better grasp on burst radius I will add in the rifle grenades. Other nationalities seemed to have a hit or miss relationships with them, but they have clearly been continuously assigned in large numbers to US forces since they first got their hands on them in WWI. It gives the US platoon its assigned AT weapon without having to figure out how to parcel out 5 bazookas from company HQ. Until then, my US platoons will have to get along without an anti-tank weapon.
Some of the penetration data looks wildly optimistic. I have found a very interesting compendium of penetration figures put together by one John Salt. It includes everything from War Office research to quite a number of books by Lentz, Hogg, and others.
Rate of fire will be the last thing I look at, after I get a lot more playing time under my belt. Within the existing range of ROF values I might take a closer look at the relative values between weapons and tweak where necessary.
USS St. Louis firing on Guam, July 1944. The Cardinals and Browns faced each other in the World Series that year