World War II Europe Tips

January 5, 2015 News No comments , , ,

With the release of World War II Europe (WWIIE) in December, the games developer, Ron Dockal, has just released a whole series of tips on playing the game and he’s kindly allowed me to make them available to WWIIE players.

Starting point for the "To the Alps" scenario of WWII-Europe. January 1945. Note that Italian units were fighting on both sides at this time. A little know attack by Italian units hit the USA 92nd Infantry Division.

Starting point for the “To the Alps” scenario of WWII-Europe. January 1945. Note that Italian units were fighting on both sides at this time. A little know attack by Italian units hit the USA 92nd Infantry Division.

 

So without further ado… here are the tips from Ron..

 

World War II Europe

Tips on Improving your Play, and Playability Suggestions

 

  1. Turn Deploy Phase
    1. Plan your key attack points (schwerpunkts) for this turn first. You are limited to the number of attacks per turn, so plan carefully.  If trying for a breakthrough, attack three adjacent hexes.  Also think about supplying the breakthrough via railroads.
    2. Think about where your opponent will attack, then plan your key defense points (also called schwerpunkts).
    3. Allocate your reserves.  Sequence should be the following to ensure you get maximum benefit from all points:
      1. Allocate reserves from Corps HQ to combat units
      2. Allocate Army to Corps to combat units
      3. Allocate Army Group to Army to Corps to combat units
      4. Allocate High Command to Army Group to Army to combats units
    4. Look at your organizational structure, and minimize the number of HQ units to be used in your attacks.  Don’t go overboard, as the situation will change during the turn and your structure must be balanced.  You are limited to the number of HQ changes you can make.
    5. Plan and execute your air supply operations.  Click on the Air Unit icon in the Command Panel, and move the mouse cursor over the air unit stacks.  I prefer using the mid level maps for air ops, since you get a lot more hexes on the display.  If you are in a mobile ground combat situation, plan an air supply unit where you will be moving to, not where you are currently.  Plan two ops if possible because your opponent may cause aborts to a single operation.  Also plan and execute fighter Search & destroy missions and Fighter CAP missions to the same hex to protect your air transports.
    6. Plan and execute your naval supply operations.  Click on the Naval Unit icon in the Command Panel, and move the mouse cursor over the naval unit stacks.  I prefer using the mid level maps for naval ops, since you get a lot more hexes on the display. These must be to a port city that you control.  Plan more than one supply op and plan to go to more than one port, since your opponent may cause aborts to a single operation at a single location.
    7. Reverse your thought process on 1e and 1f.  Plan and execute air and naval search and destroy operations to try to abort your opponent’s supply missions.
    8. Plan and execute Air ground support and Air Tactical ops.
    9. Plan and execute Naval Fire Support and Search & Destroy ops.  S&D ops should be near ports, since that will be near your opponent’s naval ops.  Think ambush!
    10. Depending on the scenario, plan other air and naval ops.
      1. Air Search & Destroy Naval units. Should be near ports where most activity occurs.  Think ambush!
      2. Airborne Drops. Near an area that will be supplied in future turns.
      3. Air Recon. Value only if FOW is chosen.  Plan op where you think your opponent may be concentrating forces to give you an idea. Perform op early, as it may change 1b.
      4. Air Transport. Must be to a friendly controlled city.
      5. Air Rebase. Increases the range of your air ops into enemy territory, or gets your air units out of harm’s way based on enemy ground activity close by.
      6. Naval Landings. Should be near a port that can be captured by ground forces embarked by the landing op.
      7. Naval Transport. Must be to a friendly controlled port.
      8. Naval Move to Port.  Increases the range of your naval ops into enemy territory, or gets your naval forces out of harm’s way based on enemy ground activity close by.
    11. At the end of the Turn Deploy phase, study the reports to determine what combats occurred and what intelligence you can gather on your enemy’s plans.
  2. Ground Move Phase
    1. The mouse cursor default is an arrow, which is used for all ground unit operations.
    2. First allocate any replacements that you have.  Click on Game Status icon, and look at Replacements Available for your country.  Mech points can be used for tank, mech, motorized, air and naval to reduce the combat losses.  Non mech points can be used for infantry, rifle, airborne, etc.  Reasons for allocating replacement scan be both offensive and defensive.  They can also be collected from turn to turn until you can rebuild a destroyed unit.  See Help files for description of that process.
    3. For units that will attack during the Combat Phase, use the Move to Attack op.  It is advantageous to try to attack three adjacent hexes, and then exploit the hole in the Main Line of Resistance (MLR) with units behind the attacks.  In this way, you do not incur a penalty for enemy ZOC. Remember that the units that will exploit the MLR gap must have used Move to Attack also, so that they can use Combat Phase Moves.
    4. Most of the other ground move ops are used to get to a better defensive posture based on terrain.  This includes Move no Attack, Move to Exploit and Strategic RR move ops.
    5. One Hex Move is used to cross major rivers, or other rough terrain.  It prevents all other ops that turn, but unit can defend itself from attacks.
    6. Unit Detail gives a display of the unit status, including which move ops it has done.
    7. Last thing to do on this Phase is to perform digin operations.  This is important to do for units that you are planning to be defending ith, as you get a combat modifier.  However, if you plan to attack or move the unit, you will incur a MF penalty if the unit is Dugin.  Mobile units should never be dugin.  If you are counting on a unit for counterattacks, then it should be left without digin.
    8. Best method to perform move operations is to use Locked Ops.  Right click anywhere on the map, then select Locked Operations, Ground Operations, then the Ground Move Operation.  By doing all Move to Attacks, Digin, etc ops consecutively, it reduces mouse clicks.  After you are done, do not forget to turn Locked Ops off.  Right click, Locked Operations, Off.  The current op is displayed in the Command Panel, bottom right side.  It should say “None Selected” when it is off.
  3. Combat Operations
    1. This is the culmination of all of your planning for the turn.  There are three kinds of attacks, normal, holding and Capture Hex.
    2. Most attacks are the Normal variety.  Click on the hex you are attacking, then click on Normal attack, then click on the units you are attacking with and finally click on the OK icon.  Results are summarized in the command Panel, and you can see the combat modifiers using the Combat Details icon.  Click OK to complete the op.
    3. Another way of executing Normal Attacks is to click on Combat Analysis.  This does the same thing, but gives you an option of executing the attack (albeit with another die roll), or just using the data for information (e.g. odds were not that good).
    4. A Holding Attack gives either zero or one loss, but prevents the defending units from moving during their next move phase.  Same CRT is used, but a zero means zero, and anything number means one loss.  Goal is to freeze particular enemy units in place.
    5. A Capture hex attack is the same as normal attack, except losses are doubled.  It is an all out assault to capture the defender’s hex regardless of losses.
    6. There is a maximum number of attacks allowed for each side for each turn.  Click on Game Status to view how many, and use them wisely.  This simulates the supply state, Axis and Allied culture and posture, political constraints, etc.
    7. Combat Phase Moves can be used to position for attacks, or exploit after attack.  Mech units move at full MF, while non-mech units move at ½ MF.  Most of the positioning is done during the Ground Move Phase, so the op is usually used for exploiting as situation or ensuring a solid defensive position (MLR).
    8. Clicking Next Phase causes the game to:
      1. Check supply for each unit
      2. Check city control (done at end of each phase)
      3. Check surrender if capital city is taken
      4. Return air units to base (rebase if in enemy control)
      5. Return naval units to port (rebase if in enemy control)
      6. Reset temp markers. (hexes can be marked by right clicking in them, then selecting temp marker from pick list)
      7. Update Game Status totals
      8. Determine initiative (currently set at side with most attacks, on patch list)
      9. Check for last turn, and display winner slide if so.
      10. Check for weather in new turn for five zones
      11. Increase unit TEM (selection process)
      12. Save file for PBEM and WWWcurrentxx.wwe.  Based on patch v1.0.1, the game saves the last twelve saves.
  4. Miscellaneous Notes
    1. Help files are displayed with your web browser. Default is Internet Explorer, but it can be changed by changing the address in the wwe_apps_link.txt file and saving.  Be sure and put an underscore at the end of the address (_).
    2. Music can be played using your media player.  Default is Windows Media Player, but any can be used.  Same method to change, since the second line in wwe_apps_link.txt is the address of the media player.
    3. Pressing the “H” key will toggle between displaying hex outlines or just the hex corners.
    4. There are several choices that can be made for display.  They are available in the windows menu under Options.  A change here is only good for your current session.  Making a change in the windows menu under Edit, Default User Interface Settings will be applied to all future sessions until you change it again. We recommend you try some of these, as we found during playtest that it is an individual choice.
    5. There is a Move and Combat Rule summary display under View.
    6. Mouse Right Click also offers some choices that are of value:
      1. UNDO op
      2. City selection.  A pick list of cities for each scenario is displayed. Selecting the city will center the map at low level on the city.
      3. Display attribute.  A pick list of display attributes will be displayed.  This is useful during planning.  Look at the mid or high level maps, and display one attribute at a time quickly.  For example, you can look for groups of high AF, DF or MF.  Good way to find the air or naval units quickly.  Also the preferred method of studying your supply lines and sources and units that are out of supply.  Next Higher HQ allows you to look at your organization structures and make changes as needed.  After you have finished looking, be sure and select Resume Operations (last item on the pick list)
      4. Can change the cursor for ground, air or naval units.
      5. Top unit select and Locked operations are choices that can be made to change the method of performing operations.  Top unit select means you do not need to select the unit, just select the op and the game selects the top unit for you.  Locked ops means you select the op once, then the game selects it for you.  AGW/MDE ops methods can be emulated by choosing both.  We found during playtest that again, it is an individual choice.  There is no one perfect method for everyone.
      6. Command Panel, left side, right side or on/off did play.
      7. Screenshot has the game capture the current screen to a .bmp file called screenshot.  It is the layer responsibility to move it to another filename.
      8. Temp marker markers the hex you right clicked on for this turn.  Useful in setting displaying objective hexes (ones you want to reach during that turn, or ones you want to hold).
      9. Finally autoscroll can be turned on or off.  Individual choice.  One last item, autoscroll can be sped up by pressing the “X” key, or slowed down by pressing the “Y” key.

 

If you want the above as a handy PDF, you should be able to download it from here [ WorldWarIIEuropeTips ]

 

Schwerpunkt’s World War II Europe nearing release

October 16, 2014 News No comments , , ,

With Schwerpunkt‘s large scale operational wargame World War II Europe not far from release, the developer Ron Dockal has created a facebook page to have a place to go for news about the game.

Ron says…

With WWII-Europe game nearing release, I thought I would start a FaceBook page to share screenshots and discuss order of battle, etc.

Ron also asked me to put up some new screenshots for the game on SFG.

So for your delictation… (click on the images to see a fuller screen capture).

 

sicily

Screenshot from WWII-Europe. This shows the Axis defense of Sicily in July 1943.

 

WWII-Europe screenshot of opening setup for the From Rome to the Gothic Line scenario. 14 May 1944

WWII-Europe screenshot of opening setup for the From Rome to the Gothic Line scenario. 14 May 1944

 

Starting point for the "To the Alps" scenario of WWII-Europe. January 1945. Note that Italian units were fighting on both sides at this time. A little know attack by Italian units hit the USA 92nd Infantry Division.

Starting point for the “To the Alps” scenario of WWII-Europe. January 1945. Note that Italian units were fighting on both sides at this time. A little know attack by Italian units hit the USA 92nd Infantry Division.

 

Scenario #58 in WWII-Europe: Second Battle of Kharkov. May 1942. Starting locations. Note the two panzer divisions displayed in the Command panel since the mouse was hovering over Kharkov. Your move!

Scenario #58 in WWII-Europe: Second Battle of Kharkov. May 1942. Starting locations. Note the two panzer divisions displayed in the Command panel since the mouse was hovering over Kharkov. Your move!

 

Zoom out

Zoom out

 

More Screenshots for World War II Europe

June 20, 2014 News 1 comment , , , ,

Ron Dockal of Schwerpunkt Games has released a new batch of screenshots for his upcoming operational wargame World War II Europe (WWIIE), and he’s given us the permission to load them up and make them available to the eager wargamers out there!

So without further ado, here are the glimpses into the game… I’ve annotated the image captions with Ron’s explanation of the context of the image (click on the images for a larger view).

 

wwiie-approach-to-leningrad

This first one is from scenario #43, Approach to Leningrad. It shows the 4th Pz Group (Gen Hoeppner) as they approach the city.

From scenario #46 Operation Typhoon.  It shows the Order of Battle display capability using 2nd Panzer Army.

From scenario #46 Operation Typhoon. It shows the Order of Battle display capability using 2nd Panzer Army.

This screenshot shows a player aid display.  The display overviews some of the key aspects of the user interface to WWII-Europe.  In the background is scenario #24 Kasserine Pass.

This screenshot shows a player aid display. The display overviews some of the key aspects of the user interface to WWII-Europe. In the background is scenario #24 Kasserine Pass.

This screenshot shows the Reinforcement Report.  It lists all of the units in the scenario, and specifies the turn when they enter and leave the scenario.  Operation Typhoon was used as an example.

This screenshot shows the Reinforcement Report. It lists all of the units in the scenario, and specifies the turn when they enter and leave the scenario. Operation Typhoon was used as an example.

Last screenshot shows scenario 48 Kiev Pocket.  The Russians did not expect the Germans to turn south, and had only one weak Rifle Army screening.  Result was a disaster, but a delay in the attack towards Moscow in 1941.

Last screenshot shows scenario 48 Kiev Pocket. The Russians did not expect the Germans to turn south, and had only one weak Rifle Army screening. Result was a disaster, but a delay in the attack towards Moscow in 1941.

 

Once again, many thanks to Ron for sharing these peeks into his development cycle. They can only serve as tasters to whet the appetite for the full game.