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 Post subject: Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm AAR
PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2018 9:09 pm 
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Since I had a bit of bachelor time this evening after completing my PBEM files I decided to start up a FCRS campaign and thought I would share with you all. I'll be in charge of the 3rd Brigade of the 2nd Armored Division. The other brigades of the 2nd Armored are in the Fulda Gap but we are stationed on the North German Plain. The war kicked off with the Soviets attacking through the Fulda Gap and just about the time NATO was about to shift us south the Soviets finally unleashed their attack here. We've deployed east of Bremen with orders to hold the Soviets away from this vital port. Here is the beginning map with our set up areas in purple. I have the option to deploy my troops as I see fit.

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 Post subject: Re: Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm AAR
PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2018 9:18 pm 
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Here is the map after I've set up. I've deployed one platoon in the town south of Bucholz to slow down any Soviet advance there. Two platoons are deployed in Bucholz itself but on the friendly side of that river as I don't want to get trapped on the wrong side. There are two recon elements on the the other side to give us warning of what's coming. Another platoon is deployed at the crossroads in Sprotze with orders to dig in. They will be necessary as I'm sure the numbers the Soviets can throw at me will force me to give up Bucholz and the other town. Further north there is a lone recon element to let me know what in the hell is coming down that road. I've positioned a couple of tank platoons to reinforce there. I have one platoon set to go to Wennerstorf as that looks to be a good position to fire at the roads on either side. The rest of the armor will assume positions on the hill in front of them to have superior fire positions on any armor making it through or around Bucholz. There is one lone Bradley platoon in Todtglusingen that will take a firing position to prevent any armor from crossing that bridge until reinforcements arrive. Here is what it looks like;

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 Post subject: Re: Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm AAR
PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2018 9:27 pm 
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Well the Soviets started their advance and we successfully ambushed them on the southern route. All the little fire and smoke symbols you see are Soviet wrecks.

Image

These wrecks amounted to 2 recon elements, 17 tanks, 1 mech element, and 3 HQ elements. The Soviets did pummel one platoon with direct fire and lots of artillery and we lost most of one platoon. Time to pull these folks back if we can disengage and get further into the city for better cover for us and worse for Soviet armor. I've well inside the Soviet's decision loop with a decision time of 17 minutes to their 29 and my projected for next turn is 15 minutes. Time to get into position. Well a wrench in the plans as Soviet radio jamming has run me out of orders so not everyone is going to get the word to move out. More when I get a chance to sit down to it again.

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 Post subject: Re: Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm AAR
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2018 6:05 pm 
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I've played an 1 hour and 25 minutes of elapsed game time now. My infantry company that I had in that town south of Bucholz has been all but wiped out with only one element of the HQ platoon left. I did get some Paladin's as reinforcements and used one battery to drop FASCAM (the yellow circle) on the road leading out of that town. Hope it's a bit of surprise for those Commie bastards.

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 Post subject: Re: Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm AAR
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2018 6:14 pm 
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Here is a screen shot of Bucholz and the area north. The Soviets haven't made a big push for the town yet but did destroy my one recon element and have a good spot to fire on the infantry platoon guarding the northern bridge, which I've blown along with the central one. The southern bridge is being wired as I write this and will hopefully be blown before the Soviets come a calling. My goal is to channel their forces to the north where there is a narrow gap along the B75 highway for them to advance and where I think I can get superior firepower to bear. North of there the Soviets are just now sending some mechanized infantry and I think the few M1A1's I have stationed there should be able to handle. Here is a screenshot

Image

I've received one tank company, some HQ elements, two batteries of Paladins (worth their weight in gold), and another couple of AD elements. For the loss of that infantry company and a few squads from another platoon and the one recon element we've killed the following; 13 recon, 29 tanks, 18 APC, 3 infantry platoons, 10 HQ's, 1 AD, and 4 transports. I'll take that loss ratio all day long. My infantry/Bradley's are doing great damage with their TOW's and the Paladin's are hammering any Soviet HQ that spends too much time on the radio without moving.

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 Post subject: Re: Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm AAR
PostPosted: Fri Oct 26, 2018 6:06 pm 
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No screenshots this time as I've decided to let the action unfold bit more. The Soviets have taken advantage of my screw up and are coming across the one bridge I didn't get destroyed in Bucholz. I've been using FASCAM and ICM on the bridge approaches and my infantry are killing tanks in droves before succumbing but those Commie bastards are just like Ron Jeremy, they just keep coming! Holding my own elsewhere as we've shot up the mechanized infantry that were approaching along the northern highway and the Soviets seem to respect the FASCAM I laid on the highway in the south. They've sent a few tank units through them but have had losses and the rest seem content to sit back and take pot shots at the cavalry troop I have on the hill just to the north. I can expect another infantry company in 36 minutes but no more armor for another 56 minutes. I'm concerned about that southern highway as I have next to nothing there if they get some intestinal fortitude to run those mines and make a hard push that way. I'm hoping that their losses there will hold them up for a bit.

Now I need to ask is anyone reading this or should I commit it to the same trashcan where most of Nero's stuff belongs?

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 Post subject: Re: Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm AAR
PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2019 12:39 pm 
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So, are you the only one on here who plays this one!?

Long time ago I bought Command: Modern Air / Naval War Operations (CMANO), but it was horrific at release. Has come a long way and I finally got it reinstalled and learned the basics, and in asking some questions and such on Steam community made friends with a chap who has a "Modern Military Wargames Group." Zakblood of Matrix Games testing fame is also a participant in the group.

Anyway, the Stone guy who is the 'leader' of the group clued me in on FPC-RS and I'm glad I bought it. Nice design!

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 Post subject: Re: Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm AAR
PostPosted: Wed Mar 06, 2019 12:44 pm 
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Apparently so. I love the design and am eagerly awaiting the Southern Storm release.

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 Post subject: Re: Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm AAR
PostPosted: Fri Mar 08, 2019 10:35 am 
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Well so far, I both like this game a lot, but also find some of the overall design decisions questionable. From my standpoint, NATO is very difficult to play and "weak" compared to Soviets. I understand there are tactics one can use (basically keep your range, and avoid being spotted by recons) to level the playing field against Soviet Computer Opponent. NATO conventional being outmatched by Soviets makes sense from an historical standpoint. So all of these points so far sum up to: challenging to play as NATO.

Now here comes the "questionable" design decision part: nukes are almost non-existent in the game. A quote from one of the Devs "There are only a couple of scenarios in which nukes are available and you suffer a 5000 VP malus from using them . . ." The VP malus is debatable, as a NATO defense against Soviet invasion prior to 1991 wouldn't have been so much about "Winning" as about "Surviving," but I find the minimal inclusion of nukes in the game at all difficult to reconcile with my own limited knowledge of the doctrine and balance of forces in Europe at this time. Unless I'm wrong, a sizeable Soviet conventional invasion of Western Europe at any point between 1960 and 1991 WOULD HAVE almost assuredly resulted in a nuclear war of at least limited if not full scale extent.

The game is well-done, engaging, and includes many design elements that are innovative and exciting. But IMO, the failure to realistically engage with the prospect of nuclear weapons is a major shortcoming.

I need to play the game more before I form a final opinion. It also deserves to be noted that: the game is highly moddable, so if I cared enough about it, I could "fix" everything that I consider to be "wrong" about the game, and that right there is an enormous strength or selling point of the game.

There was an old scenario for The Operational Art of War III, something like "Tension . . " ah hold on, here it is: http://www.matrixgames.com/forums/tm.as ... =&#1184480

"Next War: Tension 1979"

And while the UI/UX in that scenario/game are much worse that FCRS, as well some of the game mechanics are very "old school" in that the player has an unreasonable degree of Command and Control integrity, from a gameplay standpoint, the apparent degree of historical detail and thoroughness, and the honest effort to cope with the hypothetical of a WWIV in Europe in which nuclear weapons are not simply set on the shelf as being "unlikely and too complicated to bother with," I have to say that my memories of playing that one are much more positive than my experiences of playing this one so far.

If the FCRS devs have not played that one, they really should.

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 Post subject: Re: Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm AAR
PostPosted: Fri Mar 08, 2019 10:55 am 
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The question of tactical nukes being used is always a tough one for game designers trying to do a WWIII game. I've always been of the school that once that genie was let out of the bottle that there would be no stopping the escalation until a full nuclear exchange took place. Therefore I don't mind the absence of tactical nukes, especially given the level of the scenarios in FCRS. NATO is hard to play but I think if you asked any NATO commanders from that period they might have agreed with that assessment as well. You have to use your advantage of shorter command cycles and thermal imaging to their fullest to make it work for NATO.

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