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About Mirzayev

  • Rank
    Junior Member
  • Birthday 04/02/1990

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  • Location
    El Paso, TX
  • Interests
    War Gaming, Guitar, History, Video Games

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  1. So I tried my hand at playing another scenario as the Soviets: Demyansk Pocket 42. The scenario scale is still fairly small, so this is a good beginner scenario to focus on for post-1941 fighting. Also, you get to appreciate the growth of your Combat Units, and see a bit of an ad-hoc in-game storyline play out. For example, after shattering a Waffen-SS Unit, two of my infantry regiments earned a Guards designation, with their Higher HQ being designated as a Shock Army. My forces up north, near lake Ilmen, also fought courageously, resulting in their HQ being designated as a Guards Army. Besides the general fluff, these designations improve the morale of your units, due to their new-found pride in their regiment. By the end, I managed to earn a Major Victory as the Soviets. This is definitely worth playing after the tutorial scenario. Also, I watched this video prior to playing the scenario. While not directly applicable, it does a pretty good job of explaining the basic concepts. Now, I need to figure out how to use the Soviet Airforce, and how to properly employ partisans...
  2. These two variants are urgently needed, in my opinion. I'm especially glad to see the Army is working on the Stryker MSL, which (if complete) will add a sorely needed capability to the formation: Air Defense. Now, if only they would change the design of the Stryker M1127 so the Commander isn't sitting in the rear...
  3. Please keep us updated. We made a collective decision several months ago to NEVER allow Rad to play in our games due to his extremely racist comments, and his lack of cooperation as part of a team. I can include you in this conversation if the evidence will help you reach a decision.
  4. I use this often. The above is for when I absolutely cannot locate any contacts using regular means with the Skipjack. Diesel submarines often fit this description.
  5. Here is a wargame that I have played been obsessed with lately. Note: I originally intended this to be simply an explanation of the game. It has since morphed into a sort of hybrid general summary/AAR. Desperate Glory: Last Stand at the Little Bighorn Desperate Glory, by Jeff Lapkoff of digital Gameworks, is a user-friendly wargame with a very shallow learning curve focusing on the Battle of the Little Bighorn. You, as the player, can select to play as either the 7th Cavalry, or as the Sioux-Cheyenne Warriors, with the option to fight against either an AI opponent, or a human opponent via PBEM. You can also decide to let the AI duke it out, if that is your thing. There are a myriad of options for the 7th Cavalry for common "what-if" scenarios, ranging from the plausible (Custer attacks with a united 7th Cavalry) to the outright fanciful (the 7th Cavalry is equipped with Henry Repeating Rifles and Gatling Guns.) Sioux-Cheyenne options at first appear to be not quite as interesting, with the option to choose the number of warriors available (from 500 to 2000 in 500 man increments) the percentage of types of firearms available, the general level of readiness, and the ammunition level. However, you can create some pretty interesting and deadly combinations; these options also work well to tailor your difficulty level. Of note is the AI Style: I have played with these settings, and they don't seem to make a difference in my games. Perhaps this is because I always favor a very aggressive style of play, so I just don't notice the AI attempting to reduce its losses... The game itself is quite sleek and attractive, and is definitely Jeff Lapkoff's best designed game. There are three zoom levels: a close-up which gives you additional information about each unit on the counter, the default zoom level (pictured) which gives a good mix of detail and situational awareness, and the final level which gives a view of the entire battlefield. I use the default zoom about 95% of the time, with the close zoom about 5% when I want a close up view of the action. As with most wargames, you can manually control each unit, or you can give commands per Battalion and let the AI do the work for you. I usually control each unit manually, which manages to not have a feeling of excessive micro-management due to the scale. Information is presented in an easy-to-read format in the action log, and in the unit information on the lower right. As you will notice, the fatigue level has increased to 25% based on me ordering my units to charge into the Sioux-Cheyenne camp with pistols at the ready (the 7th Cavalry didn't bring their sabers to the battle.) As the fatigue level increases, your units will find their movement rate decreased. At 100%, your units might only be able to move 2-3 hexes! Each turn spent in melee increases the fatigue level by 25%; each turn out of melee decreases it by 25%. As a commander, I try to keep this level between 50% to 75% to maximize maneuverability with the lethality of melee. The 7th Cavalry also has access to a pack train used to replenish ammunition. I generally find that I am able to achieve success without requiring it (more on this later.) The picture above shows the close-zoom. The Sioux-Cheyenne warbands gradually activate based on their level of readiness. With a high-level of readiness selected, you will on average see a greater number of warbands activate per turn. In this case, I was lucky with only four warbands activating. Unfortunately, one of those is Chief Gall, who is an elite leader-unit that will cause serious issues for Major Reno's command. Of note is the horses; if you send a Cavalry unit to disperse them, any warband within four hexes that activates starts as dismounted. An Order of Battle is present for both the 7th Cavalry and the Sioux-Cheyenne, allowing you to get an in-depth look at your units... Or you can use the Battle Report to get a broad look at the status of your command, and the strength of the enemy. MAJ Reno has taken some light losses, but has managed to attrite the Sioux-Cheyenne's total manpower by around 9%. Desperate Glory also lets you know when important units have been destroyed. In this case, I managed to mass MAJ Reno's command on Chief Gall, killing him with my Indian Scouts. In real life, Bloody Knife, Custer's favorite Indian Scout, had sworn vengeance on Chief Gall after he had attack him and left him to die. In this alternate history, it looks like he had his revenge! (In the actual battle, Bloody Knife was shot in the head, his brains splattering on MAJ Reno. This caused MAJ Reno to panic, leading to his command being massacred. Legend has it that after the battle, Bloody Knife's nieces, who failed to recognize their uncle, severed his head and placed it upon a pike, before presenting it to their mother, Bloody Knife's sister. This led her to exclaim in shock "Gall has killed him at last!" Certainly, a gruesome spectacle.) At this point in the battle, MAJ Reno's command is locked in melee with the Hunkpapa, and has taken 20% casualties with more expected. However, CPT Benteen will be able to relieve his formation in about 1-2 turns. LTC Custer, meanwhile, has charged into the camp via the Medicine Tail Ford, and is engaging the Blackfoot tribe in melee. If this continues, the 7th Cavalry will be able to encircle half of the camp. At this point in the battle, victory is almost assured. As CPT Benteen's command charged forward, MAJ Reno formed his tired formation into a skirmisher line to rest. LTC Custer divided his command in half, with one part being sent to assist CPT Benteen's advance, while LTC Custer took the remainder to attack the enemy warbands in the rear area. As the Sioux-Cheyenne camp roared to life (13x Warbands activated in one turn!), all semblance of orderly ranks was lost in the 7th Cavalry, as multiple throats, all cracked and dry from the dust and heat, yelled "Charge!" The 7th Cavalry, fully unleashed, shot, bludgeoned, or trampled anything any anyone not wearing a US Cavalry uniform. Men, women, and children all fell to the wide-scale slaughter. Sitting Bull stared sadly at the spectacle before him. As a mass of Sioux-Cheyenne began fleeing the camp, he quietly declared "Our fight is over." LTC Custer wiped the sweat from his brow as he surveyed the scene before him. He had lost 67 members of the 7th Cavalry; roughly 10% of his force. MAJ Reno's command was hit hardest, suffering 21% losses. CPT Benteen reported that he had lost 5% of his Troops, with Custer realizing that he was sitting at a similar percentage. That being said, his force had defeated a numerically superior force, one that he would learn later had forced BG Crook to withdraw his entire column but a few days ago. For Custer, this would be another feather in his cap. For the Sioux-Cheyenne, this was the beginning of the end for their way of life... Closing Thoughts (in no particular order): - This is a fairly simple, quick playing wargame that is quite fun. I can generally complete a game in approximately 30-45 minutes. I generally use this to unwind after a long day at work. - Most of the concepts are straightforward, and will be familiar to anyone who has ever played a wargame. That being said, the manual is well written and explains everything quite well. It also includes some backstory on the events leading up the the Battle of the Little Bighorn, and has some biographies of the major players in the battle. For some reason, Chief Gall's bio is notably absent. - When playing as the Sioux-Cheyenne, the 7th Cavalry AI ALWAYS follows a historical pattern of movement for MAJ Reno and CPT Benteen. In every game I have played, MAJ Reno begins his retreat to Reno Hill on turn 2, and CPT Benteen's forces bumble down Indian Trail into an encirclement. LTC Custer's command is really the only one that I have found to deviate; I have seen him conduct an attack into the center of the camp via Medicine Tail Ford, withdraw and attempt to link-up with MAJ Reno on Reno Hill, or fight a last stand on Last Stand Hill. - There is a special victory condition for the 7th Cavalry where getting the Sioux-Cheyenne morale to below 50% forces them to withdraw, granting you a victory. This is what happened in the above AAR. I really wish this was an option that could be unchecked; I have never lost as the 7th Cavalry due to this victory condition. - I would imagine that this game could be a lot of fun via PBEM. If anyone decides to get a copy of this game, let me know. - There is a demo for this game available here: http://digitalgameworks.com/index.php/desperate-glory/ The demo ends on Turn 7, or "right when things get interesting." - Rock Paper Shotgun did a brief article on this game, although I can tell from the way it was written that the author only played the demo. Eerily, he has some of the same thoughts as I did when playing this (ie, it would be nice if the game included the Battle of the Rosebud). https://www.rockpapershotgun.com/2016/04/01/the-flare-path-sitting-bull-hovering-hind/#more-357367 - Finally, the game costs $19.95, with the delivery of the unlock code being via e-mail. Jeff seems to only send these out on normal business days. In a world of instant digital distribution, this may seem like an eternity to some. I have had a lot of fun with this game, and would recommend it immediately if it only cost $10 or even $15. I have no regrets buying it, but $19.95 for a wargame that only simulates one battle might be a little steep for some. I recommend trying the demo, and if you find that you keep replaying it over and over, then buy the game. I'll put out a video on this after I leave the USA's biggest cul-de-sac.
  6. I am satisfied with it for sure! That being said, just realize that Cold Waters is more arcade than simulation. I think a sizable portion of the purchasing crowd at launch expected an in-depth simulator, and were dissapointed with the results. The replay value with the campaigns is good so far. From doing some reading, I think the developers extended the campaign length a bit. My Narwhal campaign lasted about 15 days in game, which translated to about 9-10 hours of real time play. This was with me and the crew being successful every mission; you could purposely extend the campaign by "forgetting" to read your orders and taking an extended shore leave at Holy Loch. I've played a few missions in a second 1984 campaign with the Skipjack, and some of the events of the war have changed (the USSR deciding to invade Sweden as opposed to rolling over Western Europe) and my mission sets are focused on ASW, particularly against diesel submarines. With the Narwhal, I was primarily used to destroy surface groups. The play style is very different as well. The Skipjack doesn't have great sonar systems, so I often end up making tons of noise to force the enemy to reveal their positions by firing a torpedo at me. Once they fire, I shoot a active homing torpedo at their position before going evasive. The Skipjack in deep water will never get hit by an enemy torpedo; it is super fast, super maneuverable, and can form knuckles at will. So yeah, quite a different experience from the silent and hi-tech Narwhal. I have encountered two bugs so far. The first didn't allow me to play two pre-built missions, which was solved by verifying the game cache via Steam. The second was during a port strike at Murmansk. The game takes a performance hit while compressing time, and apparently if you sink any ships then your missile strike will register as a failure. I know this is being worked on by the Developers. For what its worth, I also think that the Port Strike missions are boring; you fire a set number of missiles at a designated target and leave. There are a few things that I would like to see in the game: 1. An official Soviet Campaign. This one is a common request, and will probably be the first DLC released. 2. A mission editor so you can create your own single-player missions. 3. The addition of more subs from different nationalities; UK, France, etc. Fortunately, SubSim has a LOT of mods that can serve as a stopgap in the meantime, including new submarines and new campaigns.
  7. Absolutely to both! Different submarines require different tactics. The Narwhal is slow and stealthy with good sonar, so I spent almost of the entirety of the campaign hanging out in the shadow zone on silent running, popping out only to engage targets before vanishing from their sonar. I am going to try my hand at the Skipjack next. It is very fast and agile, but is about as quiet as a freight train. That being said, some missions in the Campaign were more enjoyable than others. Land Strikes using TLAM Missiles were quite a let down, since you just pull up to a Soviet Port, fire about 8-12 missiles at a target, and then leave the AO. The majority of the mission was spent reloading for a second salvo... Also, after playing for a while you can figure out some ways to "game" the system. Firing a MK48 Torpedo with active homing in the general direction of the enemy almost always guarantees a kill at 20 KYD or less, meaning that you can kill targets with a firing solution of about 30% pretty reliably. At some points, I had fired all four tubes at different targets, with every torpedo getting a kill! I haven't beaten the 1968 Campaign, but it is significantly harder due to almost everything being able to outrun your wire-guided torpedoes. The 1984 Campaign is a good place to start, but the 1968 Campaign really test your skills. I'll be playing that one next, and will give some feedback. Edit: Also, a screenshot just for fun comparing the size difference between the Skipjack and the Typhoon. http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1101477649 Edit 2: A random shot that I had on my hard drive. It actually turned out quite nice: http://steamcommunity.com/sharedfiles/filedetails/?id=1101487332
  8. I beat the 1984 campaign last night with the USS Narwhal. The last battle against a Typhoon-class submarine was intense, and required two torpedos to send the beast limping to the surface before accepting it's fate in a watery grave. After killing my main target, I focused on the two Sierras serving as escorts, and engaged in the familiar game of fire and counter-fire. Without spoiling the actual campaign ending, I did think it was a bit anti-climactic. I anticipated having an amphibious invasion to open a second front and forcing the USSR to the negotiating table on NATO-favorable terms to be in the cards. Still, my tired but victorious crew pulled back into port to a hero's welcome, so I am satisfied with the outcome.
  9. I think hexes make a lot more sense in turn-based wargames. Hexes are an easy method of judging distance, and being able to deduce how far a unit can move in a given turn. As an example, when playing Desperate Glory I know that each hex is the equivalent of 20 yards and can accurately judge when a Cavalry Platoon is within effective fire range for their carbines. If I move to another wargame that uses hexes, there is less of a learning curve on how to read the map. Once I know the scale, and how many "movement points" a hex uses, I can begin calculating how long it will take a certain unit to get into direct fire range. The hex concept starts to fall apart when introducing real time, as suddenly the whole idea of "movement points" is thrown out and movement corresponds to real time, versus the amount of time represented in a turn. Due to this, units will no longer fall neatly within the confines of a hex, so using a hex as a method of measurement no longer makes sense. Why do the math to calculate what the range of 3.28 hexes is when you can just use a built in LOS tool? That being said, there is a lot of history behind the hex (thanks, Avalon Hill) and plenty of wargames that I have played are definitely going for the old-school boardgame look. The hex, for better or worse, is instantly identifiable with wargames. It may not be the most complex or elegant solution, but it does work. Sometimes, especially for smaller development teams, the simplest solution is good enough.
    I played this mission as the Company Commander during the Kanium Session on the 16th. While the mission of clearing three objectives may not seem daunting on the surface, do not become overconfident. This is a complex mission which will require careful planning, management of tempo, and careful consideration of how and when to employ your assignment assets. Analyzing the effects of both the urban and rural terrain, and templating how the enemy will maneuver is something that a good commander *should* do in any mission. This mission reinforces these concepts, and a lack of consideration will undoubtedly result in your offense bogging down, and being attacked in the flanks. This mission also introduces the concept of third-party actors that can inadvertently end up having their actions help the enemy. While not a full hybrid threat scenario, this does drive home that war is not always about simply killing the enemy. I hope to see more of this in the future. Finally, this mission requires planning for short halts in the offensive to resupply your maneuver units. The vehicles used have a much shorter effective direct fire range than a typical Steel Beasts scenario, and a much lower level of accuracy. Management of maximum engagement ranges will help, but at some point you will have to resupply. This is a concept that is often overlooked, especially by newer commanders, but one that must be considered to become victorious. Below is a video from my perspective during the Kanium Session where this scenario is introduced. I encourage you to download and attempt to complete this scenario, see how you fared, and then compare to our performance. In conclusion, if you are looking for a complex scenario that makes use of the Sho't Kal, and forces you to grow as a commander, then download this without delay!
  10. Please provide an example in the future, such as the photo above. It helps to minimize the level of misunderstanding.
  11. I have a similar outlook. I have certainly played games that were the equivalent of bad meals (No Man's Sky at release, the voice acting and plot in Syrian Warfare,) and some that gave the equivalent of food poisoning (Aliens: Colonial Marine, X: Rebirth.) Then, there are some that are just not palatable to your preferred tastes (Flashpoint Campaigns: Red Storm.) That being said, I don't plan to rush out and buy POA 2, since the learning curve requires more time and energy than I can currently devote. Still, it does present some interesting ideas and concepts that I haven't seen implemented to this scale before, so my interest is piqued. I'll watch some more of your videos on it when you release them before I commit to a decision.
  12. Sure, I have no issue with that, and would welcome it. What was proposed was something more along these lines:
  13. The fact that he got back in touch with you is good news for sure. I'm willing to give games with a rocky start another chance if the developers are serious about fixing things. I've been skimming through the 493 (!) page manual, and it seems like this game has a lot to offer. What caught my eye was attempting to mimic the "human element," by having leaders with varying skills in different areas. So, for example, you might have a highly aggressive leader with good initiative and a great grasp of employing direct fire weapon systems, but who also happens to be incompetent and has a low "breaking" threshold. I'm not sure how this plays out in game, but to me this seems like a much better method rather than the usual "general skill level" found in many other games. Plus, it is accurate in the fact that not all leaders are created equal, and that even a great leader will not be perfect. Also, the fact that they tend to improve as they survive battles gives a tad bit of an "RPG" element to the game. I guess you might even start having your favorite leaders, like a SSG who constantly ensures his Section's deadliness in combat, or a CO who always has a great understanding of the Commander's Intent. Or guys who cause you to let out a groan when you see that they are assigned to you.
  14. Not to mention the fact that it is unrealistic to be able to just look at an enemy vehicle and immediately know that the enemy's engine is damaged, and that the TC and loader are KIA. I am fully in agreement that the AAR works fine for this purpose.