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ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! ELASSON SPOILERS

 
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ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! ELASSON SPOILERS - 7/13/2014 10:28:50 AM   
Phoenix100

 

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WARNING: THREAD CONTAINERS SPOILERS FOR ELASSON REARGAURD!!!!!!!!!!

The pic below is a scene from ELASSON REARGAURD. The Axis (me) is trying a Regimental attack on the crossing just north of Elasson. The boxes indicating where the NZ defenders are to the sth of the crossing are outlines only because there is a mass of smoke obscuring everything. There has been some arty onto the defenders, but not much. There have been fierce and continuous barrages onto the attackers. I don't know what to do about it. Basically, this is a situation which occurs every scenario, just about. Here I am putting in an attack. I don't have much choice over where I stage it from as I have to take the bridge. I have arranged covering fire, from the recon Bn just to the NE of the crossing, but that doesn't help stp the barrages. And every time my attack starts the arty starts, hits the lead elements and it all grinds to a standstill and I start taking heavy casualties. I have various Panzers (2s and 3s), but I have puled them back out of this attack because I NEED them all to exit at the other end of the map to win this and if I commit them the arty can decimate them in no time. So, it's a plea for general help with how to cope with this kind of situation and the arty threat. There must be experts in here who can do this better than I. How would you approach this situation? We have to take the bridge but enemy arty (well out of sight somewhere way sth of the crossing) hits the attack on the approaches and stops it dead with heavy casualties. What should I do? How should this bridge best be taken given the arty threat? There is no way around it, by the way (there would be if we had dismount code....). Many thanks!

Peter




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< Message edited by phoenix -- 7/18/2014 8:52:21 AM >
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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/13/2014 12:32:16 PM   
Arjuna


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Options
  1. Wait for dark
  2. Cross the river somewhere else
  3. Locate the enemy arty and use your arty to attack them.
  4. Put in a feint/probe prior to the main attack. Hopefully it will receive the punishment and not your main attack.
  5. ??? Come on fellows let's here your recommendations.


_____________________________

Dave "Arjuna" O'Connor
www.panthergames.com

(in reply to Phoenix100)
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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/13/2014 1:12:11 PM   
Phoenix100

 

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Thanks Dave. Can't really wait fourteen hours for dark because I don't think I'll then get down to the bottom of the map in time. Maybe. I'll try. The probe is an interesting option - that I've tried - but given that the bridge is a choke point it's easy for the AI to hit you as you approach it, feint or not. I can cross the river elsewhere - and have tried - but get the same treatment there. Can't locate their arty until over the river. First time through this scenario I stumbled on a Marginal Vic without too much fuss, but - having played through several times now - a lot depends on getting past Elasson quickly, I think. Thereafter you can use minor roads across the hills north of Tirnavos and avoid the Meneskos Pass altogether. It's a nice scenario because to get a major vic you need to preserve and exit your tanks, as Axis, but it's hard to get through Elasson quickly without using (up) your tanks! Due to this arty issue. The wheeled Inf units don't seem to be able to 'power through' a barrage. They just stop, take cover, get killed. Think I'll try the night option next.

Made me think it would be nice to have the dismount code (dismount, wade across in a concealed area, attack defenders from the rear). Is that at all on the cards for CO2 (if CO2 is still on the cards), Dave? I know it would be a complicated piece of work.

But anyone else any drills for meeting this kind of arty issue?


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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/13/2014 1:33:13 PM   
dazkaz15


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If you look at the way the points are distributed in this scenario Peter, you will see its not really about taking the bridges.
Its all about getting your force to the exit in the south.
All the objectives are worth hardly any points at all, with the exception of the exit objective which makes up 90% of them.

The briefing tells you that you will encounter a number of rear guard actions, which is a clue that there sole purpose is to delay you with weak small unit actions.
So it stands to reason that what you mustn't do is be delayed by them

The bridges are worth hardly any points, and can almost always be bypassed to cross at another crossing.
Your key unit in this scenario is the recon Bn 5 that can be split up to reconnoitre all the possible crossing points, and secure the unoccupied ones for fast passage of your main force.

This scenario kind or reminds me of those maze games you used to get in comics, where you draw in your route in pen until you find the exit, and at the end of it you have a mas of scribble, as you back track up one dead end, then turn down another lol
You have mobility as your main weapon, this is what you need to use to win this scenario.

If you find you have men waiting for the recon patrols to report back the fastest route, use these to take the bridges to aid the supply, and follow up forces in taking a shorter route.
Take them after dark, and from both sides of the river.

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/13/2014 2:02:21 PM   
Phoenix100

 

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Thanks Daz. I can see that about the Vic points, of course, but, sadly, it's not true that you can do without using bridges. All your force is motorised (as Axis) and there are no back routes over the two major rivers (or none that I've managed to find - let me know if you've found something I've missed), so you HAVE to use at least one bridge per river. That's why I needed the advice about the arty.

You do have a couple of engineer bridges, so you can slow yourself down at lesser crossing points (to build a crossing) if you wish, but that ends up in the same situation vis a vis the arty. I've tried.

< Message edited by phoenix -- 7/13/2014 3:03:36 PM >

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/13/2014 2:24:39 PM   
Phoenix100

 

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Sorry Daz - you were right. Looked at it again. Took all my units down the far western edge of the map and they have landed - as you see from the pic below - in the area of the exit, well behind all the NZ defenders, by dusk day 1!!!! Lol!!! It was like one of those puzzles. very gamey though for me to do it like this as it was only possible because I've now played it so often I know where all the defenders are. Harder to do if you have to probe more carefully. And the arty advice is still needed, generally, because this kind of gamey 'solution' isn't the norm, I think.








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< Message edited by phoenix -- 7/13/2014 6:50:25 PM >

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/13/2014 2:30:04 PM   
dazkaz15


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Sorry Peter, I was referring mainly to the major road bridges that are primed, when I said about bypassing them.
The first at Kallithia can be bypassed NE of Filipalio.
The main highway bridge at Elasson can be bypassed at the ferry crossing at Magoula.
These bridges can then be attacked from both sides, or you can push on as you see fit.

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/13/2014 2:36:13 PM   
dazkaz15


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Glad you found a solution mate

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/13/2014 4:54:01 PM   
dazkaz15


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I didn't have much time earlier to chat, but I would like to add that this is a very cleverly designed scenario, as are all the ones I have played so far from the series.
This one is particularly cunning, because it is designed to draw you in by waving a big fat Red Herring under your nose, in the form of that red primed heavy road bridge.

I think the whole scenario is designed as a lesson in reading, and understanding the objectives.

It reminds me very much of a map reading lesson I was given when in the forces.
It was an orienteering race. The start line for the race was about 50 meters away from the map station, where you picked up your map, worked out where you were, then ran off to your first check point.
Nearly every person, picked up their map, and ran off in the other direction, only to have to do a 180deg turn further on.
The correct route was in fact, right back the way we had just come, from the start line.
We had done exactly what the instructors had hoped we would, by failing to orientate the map properly before running off, and taken the route they pointed us towards instead.

This is exactly what the scenario designer has done in this scenario by pointing us at the primed, and heavily defended bridge.

As for the artillery advice, its the same as I have given numerous times before I am afraid, the summery of which is if you conduct a limited attack, on a narrow front, in daylight, over open terrain, with infantry, against a side with numerous deployed artillery assets, its going to be a bloodbath.
They have had plenty of time to register the guns, and set up good defensive positions, and you are coming down the bare face of that hill right from the direction they were expecting you, funnelling towards a narrow point at the bridge.
They are able to concentrate the whole of their artillery assets onto just 1km square, and you don't even have that much artillery of your own to keep them suppressed.

Please don't feel belittled in any way for taking the bait Peter. That's exactly what it was designed to do.
I love it when we are able to have discussions like this as well, so thanks for bringing it up

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/13/2014 5:19:05 PM   
Phoenix100

 

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It's interesting, Daz, (and shows you're right, no doubt) because if you look at the whole map on google earth, with an inclined angle so you can clearly see the valleys, plains, river and mountain obstructions etc and if you were asked to plot a route with motorised assets from the top down to the exit nth of Larissa then you certainly would see that to go round the western side, completely avoiding the mountain ranges, looks perfectly feasible. It's much harder to see the lie of the land in the game maps. That said, I was, as I said, only able to steam down the western edge avoiding the defenders because I know where they are from having played it through many times. Your suggestion to use the crossing at Magoula, for example, just runs you into a dug-in Bn and you get the same arty pouring down on you as you try to cross. You need to go further west than that, even. And the presence of a massive river (the biggest on the map) marking that western edge, a river you must cross by ferry at 5% movement, multiple times, acts as a deterrent to thinking that that is a feasible route. I would have expected the kiwis to have been set up to make sure that couldn't happen. I assume that in RL the Axis just marched straight down the map, no messing around.

When I really play this game slowly it strikes me very much how much better it is than anything else out there. And yet, I see much more activity in other forums, with games that really are (comparably) games. I really hope that the plan to produce a CO2 comes off, though I have my fears that the devs can't be expected to put time and effort into something that's not as well supported, basically, as many easier games. The devs do it for love, not money, naturally, but as we all know that means you're spending your working life doing something else and coding by night, in your spare time, and I fancy you can only do that for a certain number of years before you think you might need to enjoy life in other ways.

Peter

< Message edited by phoenix -- 7/13/2014 6:23:09 PM >

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/13/2014 5:30:39 PM   
Phoenix100

 

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Yellow route versus white route. If you move around on google earth you can see even more clearly that the yellow route is a nice flat route to the exit (you follow a river, basically). The white route is blocked by a significant mountain range. Yet if you compare it to the game map above in the thread you see that the white route mountain pass (Meneskos) requires attention to see just how significant it is.






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< Message edited by phoenix -- 7/13/2014 6:57:57 PM >

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/13/2014 5:37:51 PM   
Phoenix100

 

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Even clearer from street view. This is from the plain just south of Elasson.




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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/13/2014 6:38:42 PM   
dazkaz15


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One of the things I was surprised at, was that the ferry's were able to take the weight of the armour.
I did of course check this with the route tool first.

I always look on a ferry crossing as being small boats not pontoons, capable of carrying armour.
I guess some ferry's are different, and have their own characteristics.

It would be helpful for planning purposes if a weight limit could be put on the tool tip for the crossing, stating the max weight, once the crossing has been reconnoitred.

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/13/2014 8:29:47 PM   
dazkaz15


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Can anyone confirm if the Ferry crossings are working as designed in this scenario?

They don't appear to be slowing movement much at all, or have any kind of weight restriction.
Of particular interest are the ones on the west of the map around Amouri.
Anyone with historical knowledge of what the actual ferry's at the time consisted of, would be of great interest as well.
Thanks.

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/13/2014 9:04:45 PM   
dazkaz15


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This is a modern day image of the river, and bridge at Amouri from Google Earth.
Its not really what I expected to find!

I guess it would depend on the season as to how impassable this section of river is.
This image is obviously taken during a dry period.




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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/13/2014 10:26:26 PM   
Phoenix100

 

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Many of the rivers look like this in google earth. I was assuming it was seasonal. The google earth imagery I've looked at was all dry season and the offensive was a Spring offensive. Could be huge differences between river states now and 70 years ago also.

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/14/2014 7:11:47 AM   
dazkaz15


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Just done a little research in the game manual, and found out that a ferry, and ford share the same symbol in game.

This is quite an important distinction to try and find out when planning your tactics as, a ferry represents boats crossing a river, which can take a considerable time to traverse, and usually has a weight limit.
A ford is the crossing of a river where it is shallow, and has no such restrictions.

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/17/2014 10:17:58 PM   
dazkaz15


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quote:

ORIGINAL: phoenix

So you had a shot at Elasson, Daz? Interesting scenario, I think. I've found you can't get a total vic by just sneaking all Axis units past the defenders (you can do this - as discussed - quite easily.) But the most I've ever got by sneaking past is a marginal vic. I get this despite having 100VPs at scenario end (and you have to watch when the end arrives as the scenario terminates automatically when you exit all). It's only a marginal vic because the Allies can get nearly 80 points just from sitting on all those little objectives, crossings etc that you have waltzed past! That's a nice set up (though it does lead to the Allies ignoring you as you file down the map edge - a little ahistorical, perhaps). The whole scenario is, I think, a little ahistorical the way the VPs are set up (which is nice, because it gives both sides options they didn't have in RL), in that it allows you to choose to exploit defensive weaknesses in ways that the Axis wouldn't have been able to in RL, and didn't. I think - to force the Axis into a more historical approach (ie not just sneaking down the western edge of the map)- that a nice mod would be to give both sides a more equal set of objectives and points. Basically, giving the Axis roughly the same points distribution as the Allies would mean there would more likely be a fight for the crossings at the top of the map. What do you think?

Good tips on exiting. Thanks.

I loaded it up after you asked for help to see what I could do.
Like I have already said I am very busy at the moment so had to play it fast.
I had Intel from you, to indicate that the bridge was well defended, so that helped me with my plan to use the Recon elements to scout for other routes.
When I get more time I will explain how I got the decisive victory, if you want?

Can you please change the title of the thread to indicate it has spoilers for the Elasson Rearguard scenario when you get time mate?




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< Message edited by dazkaz15 -- 7/17/2014 11:19:45 PM >

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/17/2014 10:37:18 PM   
dazkaz15


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From what I have read so far on the history, which is very little, it would seem that in this scenario you are the spearhead of the Corps, and its your task to exploit through this map to reach the next crossroads town at Larissa then Tirnavos south of this map.
This will cut off the retreat of the Allies, and prevent a large portion of them reaching the sea to escape.
The units you bypass will be mopped up by the follow up infantry divisions, as per standard Blitzkrieg operations.

It says in the scenario briefing that they have been using minor roads to outflank the Allies Rearguard actions.
In fact most of the information, and clues are in the scenario briefing.
Ill chat more about it when I get more time.


< Message edited by dazkaz15 -- 7/17/2014 11:41:07 PM >

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/18/2014 2:06:12 AM   
Fred Sanford

 

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I thought I saw someplace that referred to that crossing symbol as a "ferry OR ford". Personally, I think they behave more like fords.
quote:

ORIGINAL: dazkaz15

One of the things I was surprised at, was that the ferry's were able to take the weight of the armour.
I did of course check this with the route tool first.

I always look on a ferry crossing as being small boats not pontoons, capable of carrying armour.
I guess some ferry's are different, and have their own characteristics.

It would be helpful for planning purposes if a weight limit could be put on the tool tip for the crossing, stating the max weight, once the crossing has been reconnoitred.


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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/18/2014 7:32:30 AM   
dazkaz15


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Thanks Fred, that's the conclusion I came to as well.

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/18/2014 7:51:37 AM   
Phoenix100

 

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Thanks Daz. I can see how you got your vic just looking at the pic - you have exited and held a few objectives down the western side. Historically, I think the Axis were infiltrating small columns into the NZ rear through the minor mountain roads to the east (off map, in the scenario, but represented by the appearance of the mountain troops half way down the map). It's a great scenario, I think. I really like all these Greek ones, in fact. I think the map colours make me feel more cheerful....
Spoiler warning done.

< Message edited by phoenix -- 7/18/2014 8:52:42 AM >

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RE: ARTY ADVICE PLEASE! - 7/18/2014 8:04:56 AM   
dazkaz15


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Yeah that's pretty much what I did.

What's important to remember is that in delaying type scenarios, most of the objectives are occupation objectives,which means that the longer the Allies hold them, the more points they get.
These type of objectives rarely have any points associated to them at completion.

As the scenario ends once you exit all your required troops at the exit objective, and in this scenario the exit is worth a huge amount of points, the faster you exit them, the less time the Allies will have to acquire those occupation points.
You can help with this by insuring that a few of the objectives are contested.
This can be done in a gamely type fashion, by sneaking a unit inside the objective, or as I have done in my scenario, by attacking a couple of key objectives that I wanted to ensure the security of my flank, at Dhomenikon for example.

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