In this part, I will present a simple point cost formula and some extra data for the units in Stalinís Tanks, for use in Design-Your-Own (DYO) scenarios, and two systems for incorporating morale and command control into the game.
29.0 Unit Point Costs
After a few tries, I derived a point cost formula that did not turn up too many anomalies.
29.1 Infantry and guns
Point Cost = AT Factor + AP Factor + (2 x Defense Factor) + Special Factor
Weapon Accuracy = +10 points
Cavalry = + 6 points to account for their extra movement ability
29.2 Armored Fighting Vehicles
Point Cost = AT Factor + AP Factor + Armor Factor + (4 x Movement Factor) + Special Factors
The Armor Factor is calculated as follows: Armor Class J = 10 points, adding 5 points per class to a maximum of 55 for Armor Class A.
Well-sloped armor (circled Armor Class) = +10 points
Open-topped AFV (SU-76, Marder III, Nashorn, halftracks) = -5 points
Weapon Accuracy (circled AT factor) = +10 points
Turreted AFV = +5 points
29.3 Point Cost for Other Units
Hidden Initial Placement = 5 points per unit hidden
Entrenchment = 10 points
Mines = 20 per hex
Truck = 15 points
Light artillery barrage = 30 points
Heavy artillery barrage = 50 points
I would have liked to have included something like a Rarity Factor to account for the fact that very few of some tanks were produced (and therefore should be more Ďexpensiveí). For example, only 85 PzJg VI "Jagdtigers" were ever built, but they seem to show up in almost every East Front tactical armour game. Meanwhile, over 2,800 Marder III tank destroyers were built by the Germans and most of them served on the Eastern Front, but this vehicle was left out of the original design. You should use your own best judgement and knowledge here.
Battles are rarely if ever fought to the last man and gun.
30.1 Troop Quality. In this variant, morale derives from troop quality, which comes in three flavors:
Elite = top-quality SS or Wehrmacht troops; Soviet Guards units with significant combat experience. Morale Number (MN) = 10, Hesitation Point (HP) = 50%.
Standard = troops normally found in engagements on either side in the middle to late war period. MN = 9, HP = 40%.
Poor = many 1941-42 Soviet troops; Axis Allies except Finland; militia or conscript troops like Volkssturm. MN = 8, HP = 30%.
Normally all troops on one side will have the same troop quality, but you may want to vary this. For example, in the Close to the End scenario (25.5) the group of German at-start forces could be Poor quality, while the reinforcements could be Elite. In other situations you could raise or lower the MN or HP numbers to reflect that one side is in a desperate situation (e.g., fighting to break out of an encirclement). It all depends on how much you want to keep track of.
30.2 Hesitation Point and Checking Morale. Next, you need to derive each sideís Hesitation Point (HP) in terms of units lost. Round all fractions up, so for example a 16-unit force of Standard quality troops will reach its HP of 40% (and have to start checking morale) after losing its seventh unit. In situations where one side or the other is reinforced, figure the HP for the total number of units that will enter the game.
A player must check his morale at the beginning of each of his Player Turns after he has reached his HP. He rolls two dice and adds the following modifiers:
+1 for each unit after the first that was destroyed during the preceding enemy Player Turn (so if three friendly units were destroyed, he would add +2 to his roll - remember that this is not cumulative from turn to turn)
-2 if enemyís morale is Shaken
30.3 Shaken Morale. If he rolls more than his MN, then his morale is Shaken. It is possible for both sides to be Shaken at the same time. The following effects apply to all his units for the rest of the game:
a) In the Defensive Fire Phase of each turn, he must roll on the Discombobulation Table (see below) to allow a unit to fire or conduct a close assault. Units test individually.
b) All attacks against his units on the Anti-Personnel Table or Hit Effects Table are shifted one column to the right (So a 2-1 attack becomes a 3-1, for example). This doesnít mean that enemy fire magically becomes more destructive or accurate, just that your troops are now more likely to run away or abandon slightly damaged vehicles, when they might have continued fighting under more confident circumstances.
31.0 Command Control
It is generally agreed by historians of the period that the great German victories in the early period of the Great Patriotic War were due to the fact that they were less confused and more "operationally agile" than the Soviet troops at this time, and not to any inherent advantage in armor or firepower. This aspect is something that did not come out well in Stalinís Tanks, which does a better job of comparing the technical aspects of the different vehicles.
31.1 Soviet Command Restrictions: Movement. Divide Soviet units into two classes: vehicle (i.e. anything with an engine) and non-vehicle. A Soviet unit must have a LOS to at least one other unit of the same class to be able to move automatically in either Movement Phase. If it does not, it must roll on the Discombobulation Table to see if it can move.
31.2 Soviet Command Restrictions: Fire. Most Soviet artillery barrages
were poorly aimed, pre-plotted area bombardment missions, and "on-call" missions
were not always possible. This can be simulated in the game by requiring the
Soviet player to roll successfully on the Discombobulation Table in the Mobile
Fire Phase to see whether his promised barrage arrives, and increasing the odds
of scatter to a 1-3 on one die. In compensation, though, the Soviet player
should also have a 1-3 chance of a light barrage unexpectedly turning into a
heavy barrage, to reflect the greater weight of artillery they used when it was
Die roll to succeed (Troop Quality) 1-2 (Poor)
32.0 Making Your Own Scenarios
With the unit point costs supplied, it should be easy for you to make up more or less balanced scenarios. Things you and your opponent should agree on are: the time period of the scenario (so Tiger IIs donít show up in 1941), the overall situation, victory conditions, and the number of points each side should get. Typical situations are:
Meeting engagement - start with an empty map and have both sides enter. Each side should have roughly equal points to "purchase" units.
Defense/offense - one side starts dug in and the other attacks. Either or both sides may be reinforced. The attacker should have significantly more points (2-3 times as many) than the defender.
Withdrawal - One side, ostensibly in the middle of retreating, moves onto the map followed by the other side. See who gets off most lightly.
"Other" - there are many variations you could work on the above basic situations - raids, convoy escorts, attrition battles, reconnaissance against a hidden enemy, etc.. Use your imagination.
As a rule of thumb, 800-1,000 points for the smaller side will give a small
scenario, 1,500 a medium one, and over 2,000 will be a big battle. All other
things being equal, you should reduce your starting points by 20% if you take
Elite troops, and increase them by 20% if you take Poor troops. Remember that
more is not always better.
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