From: I'm from New Hampshire; I only work in cyberspace
This is for people who have just got the game. Now, for the record, I've been gaming for a good bit and played War in the Pacific: AE for a while. Now, I'm just enough of a grognard to appreciate the mechanics and how WitP:AE works (I work in IT, btw, writing manuals and such, so I understand the back end a bit). To be frank, though, it was just a bit too far (hah! - that's a good one!). Not for casual gaming, the kiddy end of the pool is five feet deep.
But WitW - what an achievement, it hits that sweet spot in a way that no other serious tactical WWII game does (never looked at WitE).
The Turns are a week and a long game is 109 Turns. Manageable. Not every day of 44 months, as in WitP. Yes, you could have four day Turns in WitP, but you risked loss of operational control. The way a Turn is structured in WitW is instructive, maybe even ground-breaking.
I can't praise this design and design approach to a computer game about the subject enough; as someone who deals with scope requirements and project management, this is an outstanding team effort.
One Noob's Guide
Having played with about a half dozen scenarios now, starting with Husky (but quickly abandoned as I was checking out others), then actually playing Battleground Italy and clearing out Sicily; then playing with some others and being pleasantly surprised at actually breaking out in Breakout & Pursuit, I would say that one should get the expansion and play Torch to Tunisia.
The first virtue of this scenario is there aren't too many units on the board to begin with (I've played nothing but Allies and will be doing so for a while - AFB). The rest of the virtues come into play as you play the scenario. I'm up to turn 14 in a 37 Turn scenario, and from my experience with the other, mostly shorter scenarios, Torch is a really nice exercise; I've applied what I've read here on the forums and in-game.
First, you will learn about organizing your forces. The first big step here is let the AI run the air game. Now take a look at what you have on the map. You have a whole buncha batallions, regiments and brigades. Learn and check out the command structure. Look for your Corps commanders, your Army commanders, your Army Group, and then for the topmost HQ. Once you understand the structure, take a look at the Axis layout (no FoW). You have arrived at first contact. Take a look at the terrain and make a plan. Get your army together. In the meantime, sprint with Montgomery and the UK & Comm forces from the east. They've quite a trek with a very nasty surprise waiting for them, so get started now.
Now, about that command structure - I still haven't fiddled with my SUs in the structure, but noobs should know that the proximity, within Command limits, of HQ means you might get to use some of their snap-on toys in an attack. It's kinda like "Mother, May I?". Anyhow, if you're a good boy, are in Supply (NOTE: 'In Supply' is ON/OFF in this game - from another thread and post - to quote, "you're either Isolated or in Supply"), have plenty of MP and all else favorable, all that lovely artillery they carry with them (and the engineers, etc.) will help you out. The Allies even have a rule advantage about their artillery - the HQ/SU thing means More Guns Can Be Used.
Anyhow, you have a whole buncha battalions (II), regiments (III) and brigades (X) running around. Not too many divisions (XX). If you are a Complete Noob to Wargaming, the above is the military hierarchy with the corresponding symbols for the formations (smallest to highest). Anyhow, you can organize and decompose units up and down the hierarchy. If you have designations like 1/1st US Infantry, it means if you put the 2/1 and 3/1 brother units all in the same hex, you can join them together as the 1st ID (US). You can also break units down.
So, as you get reinforcements in Torch, watch for matching or brother units.
Now, as you get organized and push counters around, at some point you're going to want to do some fighting (face it, that's why we're here). When you do, you might start asking yourself, "How come all my guys are so weak?" Aha, chump, welcome to Logistics.
Torch is good for this. I know some other scenarios were designed with logistics in mind as an object lesson, but in Torch, logistics are at the fore. I'm in Turn 14 and only started looking at my Supplies seriously a few Turns ago. They're terrible. Turn on the Soft Factors switch to Supply and see all the red triangles on the left shoulder of your counters (and the Axis counters, to, with no FoW).
Build Depots. Adjust Depot Priorities. Keep adjusting until you get it right (I still haven't). Adjust the Supply Priorities of your HQs, if needed, I would say, I haven't done that yet.
Then look at your Info screens. Why am I losing the air war? (Hint: it's late 1942, Ike, you don't have command of the air yet).
Now look at the situation. Will Montgomery ever get here, and in what shape and strength?
Now look at the Turn number. Look at your front. You're slightly outnumbered at this level of organization, but how about consolidating Divisions?
And what's your plan, Ike? We need to attack and defeat the Axis, on the ground, here and now.
Maybe we need to tweak our Air Directives. Think about the mission structure of the Air War. We're not going to do it without the flyboys and the game is almost halfway over...
It's a good scenario, you'll learn the basics. I'm at the point where I might start opening that scary black box known as the Air War...
< Message edited by HexHead -- 5/11/2016 10:43:05 PM >
"Goddamn it, they're gittin' away!!"
- unknown tincan sailor near the end of Leyte Gulf, when Kurita retired