MBT 87

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MBT87.png

Description

MBT 87 is a simple linear multiplayer campaign created by Volcano. MBT 87 is a set of scenarios based on the Avalon Hill and GMT Games boardgame "MBT".

The scenarios are all stand alone battles, with each taking place on a specific day in the campaign in sequence, and following the flow of the hypothetical conflict. Also, the scenarios cover different sectors along the front, covering US, West German (FRG), and British (BAOR) forces.

Scenario Information


Theme: Cold War, 1987
Scale: One or two companies per side (4 to 6 players per side)
Time limit: 120 to 180 minutes maximum (the focus is on allowing for plenty of time, although scenarios seldom go to the full limit)
Scenario complexity: Moderate

Additional Information

The scenarios are scaled to the boardgame so that the scenario time limits are as correct and realistic as possible. This means that scenarios typically have long time limits (from 120 to 180 minutes), but always have early termination possible. This allows for a more realistic battle to develop, where the attacker can properly develop the situation rather than rush into it recklessly, but still allowing the scenario to typically end earlier if too many losses are sustained.

Unlike the Firefight 79 campaign, the conversion of the MBT scenarios into SB scenarios was done very carefully and faithfully, at a 1:1 scale of the units and time scale.

Any units that are not playable (like the T-80U) or available (like the M2A1) in SB are then compensated for by adding or subtracting appropriate strength to that side, using the MBT boardgame's integral "points" system (where each vehicle type is worth a certain amount of points), converted into SB's "unit cost calculator". This helps to increase the likelihood to remaining faithful to the boardgame's original scenario balance.

The scenarios feature real world equipment and ammunition that was available in 1987, being faithful to the boardgame's scenario TOE as much as possible. Also, somewhat unique are the scenario's scoring conditions which, like real life, places more emphasis (points) on friendly and enemy losses to the degree that the objectives are not a majority of the total points. Additionally, also unique is that the points for losses will often differ for both sides, being based on the forces involved (the superior side has more points to lose from losses).

Morale is modeled, faithful to the boardgame's scenarios, where a side will break (retreat) if a certain level of losses are sustained. This is translated into a % strength condition, based on the unit's quality (in the original boardgame's scenarios) so that a side will retreat if the "Break Point" is achieved, resulting in an early termination of the scenario (an "end if" condition, allowing the scenario to end before the time limit). The scenario will typically end before the time limit due to losses.

Given the later Cold War time setting, NATO forces are technologically superior but the Soviets also have use of FASCAM and ICM, and good quality ammunition. The Soviets typically have superiority in numbers and also (or at least even parity) in ammunition, fire support, and supporting assets.

Just like in the Firefight 79 campaign, the scenarios are set to intentionally cheesy 1980-90s era Cold War movie theme music for nostalgia.

Scoring

In the MBT 87 campaign, a set of Cold War scenarios set in 1987 are played in sequence, and a score is totaled at completion to determine a winner. The NATO side accumulates positive points, while the Soviet side accumulates negative points, and these cancel each other out. By the end of the campaign, if the final score is +500 or greater, then the result is a NATO Victory, or if it is -500 or less it is a Soviet Victory, and anything in between is a Draw.

Early Termination

If the Total Scenario Score (not including awards) for the US side is > +1500 points or for the Soviet side is < -1500 points at the end of TWO consecutive scenarios, then that side wins and the campaign ends early in a Major Victory for that side.

NOTE: This is not absolute; as long as a side is within ~100 points of that range, then they will stay in the fight.

Scenario List

The first and last scenario (S01 and S09) of the campaign are always the same - they are meeting engagements. However scenario S02 through S08 vary, depending on who won the last scenario. If the NATO side won, then the next scenario is a NATO attack scenario. If the Soviet side won, then the next scenario is a Soviet attack scenario. This means that if a side keeps winning then they will be expected to continue attacking.

There are 16 scenarios in the MBT 87 campaign, although only 9 total scenarios are played:

NOTE: The "A" version of the scenarios are a NATO attack, while the "B" versions are a Soviet attack. As mentioned above, the first and last scenarios neither have an "A" or "B", they are neutral meeting engagements.
  • MBT-S01-02-First Clash: A reinforced US M60A3(TTS) tank company conduct an initial meeting engagement against a reinforced Soviet T-72AV tank company (MRR) at a a river crossing.
  • MBT-S02A-100-Riposte: ***IN DEVELOPMENT***
  • MBT-S02B-14-Lightning (FRG): A reinforced West German detachment with a reinforced platoon relief force defends an airfield against a Soviet T-72AV recon company and a reinforced T-72BV tank company.
  • MBT-S03A-101-Thunder (FRG): ***IN DEVELOPMENT***
  • MBT-S03B-03-The Gap: An understrength US M1(IP) and M3A1 cavalry troop defends to disrupt a breakthrough of a reinforced Soviet T-80BV tank company with recon detachment.
  • MBT-S04A-102-Combined Arms: ***IN DEVELOPMENT***
  • MBT-S04B-15-Advance (FRG): A reinforced West German Marder mechanized infantry company defends objectives in sector against a reinforced Soviet T-72BA tank company and a reinforced Soviet BMP-2 motorized rifle company.
  • MBT-S05A-19-Dark Passage (FRG): A reinforced Soviet tank company defends against a pre-dawn attack by a reinforced West German Leopard 2 panzer company and a reinforced West German Marder mechanized infantry company.
This is a unique two-part scenario, a mini-campaign within the campaign. Therefore, keep in mind that if scenario MBT-S06A-20-Counterstroke (FRG) is played (below) then West German units in that scenario will continue from the end state of this scenario.
  • MBT-S05B-04-Breakthrough: A reinforced US M2A1 mechanized infantry company defends an objective in depth against a reinforced Soviet T-72BA tank company and a reinforced Soviet BMP-2 motorized rifle company.
  • MBT-S06A-20-Counterstroke (FRG): A reinforced Soviet tank company and a mixed Soviet motor rifle company defend against a reinforced West German Leopard 2 panzer company and a reinforced West German Marder mechanized infantry company.
This is the second part of the two-part mini-campaign, a continuation of MBT-S05A-19-Dark Passage (FRG). If that scenario was played then West German forces continue from their MBT-S05A-19-Dark Passage (FRG) scenario's end state. If it was not played, then a standard setup which assumes the previous scenario was an FRG victory, is used (true to the source material).
  • MBT-S06B-25-Op Market (BAOR): An understrength British Warrior mechanized infantry company conducts a desperate delaying action to allow time for a reinforced British Challenger 2 company relief to arrive, against a reinforced Soviet T-72BA tank company with extra infantry support.
  • MBT-S07A-27-Op Garden (BAOR): An understrength Soviet motor rifle company and a mixed Soviet tank company defends against a British reinforced armoured squadron and a British reinforced FV432 mechanized infantry company.
  • MBT-S07B-05-Exploitation: An understrength US M60A3(TTS) cavalry troop with a reduced strength mechanized infantry company (supported by M1(IP)) prevents a breakthrough against a reinforced Soviet T-72BA tank company and a reinforced Soviet BMP-2 motorized rifle company.
  • MBT-S08A-08-Turnabout: A reinforced Soviet motor rifle company conducts a delaying action to allow time for a reinforced Soviet tank company relief to arrive, against an understrength US M1IP tank company, and an understrength US M2A1 mechanized infantry company.
  • MBT-S08B-26-Power Strike (BAOR): An understrength British FV432 mechanized infantry company conducts a delaying action around river crossings to allow time for an understrength British Challenger 2 company relief to arrive, against a reinforced Soviet T-80U tank company with air assault supporting assets.
  • MBT-S09-07-Head-to-Head: A reinforced US M1 tank company and a reinforced US M113A2 mechanized infantry company conduct a confused meeting engagement against a reinforced Soviet T-80BV tank company and a reinforced Soviet BTR-80 motorized rifle company.

Awards

After playing each scenario, participants may gain awards. These are mainly "just for fun" but also they can be used to slightly influence the campaign score. The intent is to reward participation, positive behavior, and good performance. These award names are fictitious, although their artwork and name are based on actual military decorations.

Award List
Medal
(NATO/Soviet)
Name Description # Points
MOM.png MOM R.png Medal of Merit After each mission, awarded to each player that had sum of 6+ [NATO side] | 4+ [Soviet side]:
(KILLS BY UNITS UNDER YOUR COMMAND - LOSSES UNDER YOUR COMMAND)
[every 10 personnel lost counts as -1 to the total losses under your command]
20
CM.png CM R.png Command Medal After each mission, awarded to each player that CO'd at least two missions
[only awarded once per player, per campaign]
15
MOV.png MOV R.png Medal of Valor After each mission, awarded to each player that had 5+ [NATO side] | 3+ [Soviet side]:
(USER KILLS - USER LOSSES) and 0 USER FRATRICIDE
10
ESM.png ESM R.png Exceptional Service Medal At campaign completion, awarded to each player that was present to completion of every scenario in the campaign 5
SM.png SM R.png Service Medal After each mission, awarded to each player that is present to completion of the scenario 1


CURRENT RECORDS

MBT 87 records
Date Completed CO(s) Scenario Arc Final Score / Result
[Scenarios / Awards]
Campaign Award
20 NOV 2021
(prototype)
CavGunner (5), Colebrook (2), Roguesnake (2) [NATO]
Volcano (3), Dark (2), -DK- (2), Tankhunter (2) [Soviet]
S01, S02, S03, S04, S05
S06, S07, S08, S09, S10
(pre-A/B variant rules)
+1441 / NATO VICTORY
[1392 + 49]
MBT87-21 Ribbon.png


Award Records

MBT 87-21

Scenario Name
(Score)
Date NATO Side # Points Soviet Side # Points Awards Points (sum)
MBT-S01-02-First Clash
(-290)
24 SEP 2021
SM.png (Service Medal) CavGunner[CO]; Colebrook; Gibsonm; Pariah; Roguesnake; Valleyboy
+6
SM R.png (Service Medal) Dark[CO]; -DK-; Sean; Tacbat; Tankhunter; Volcano; ZERO
-7 -1
MBT-S02-02-14-Lighting (FRG)
(-554)
01 OCT 2021
CM.png (Command Medal) CavGunner
SM.png (Service Medal) CavGunner[CO]; abe; Colebrook; EINE KLINE; Fidel; Gibsonm; Hexagon; Roguesnake; Valleyboy
+19
SM R.png (Service Medal) Volcano[CO]; Dark; -DK-; Krause; pancho; Sean; Tankhunter; ZERO
-8 +11
MBT-S03-03-The Gap
(+784)
08 OCT 2021
SM.png (Service Medal) CavGunner[CO]; Colebrook; Gibsonm; Pariah; Roguesnake; Valleyboy
+6
SM R.png (Service Medal) Tankhunter[CO]; Dark; -DK-; Sean; Tacbat; Volcano; ZERO
-7 -1
MBT-S04-15-Advance (FRG)
(+310)
15 OCT 2021
MOV.png (Medal of Valor) Colebrook(5)
SM.png (Service Medal) CavGunner[CO]; 12A; Colebrook; Fidel; Gibsonm; Pariah; Roguesnake; Valleyboy
+18
CM R.png (Command Medal) Volcano
SM R.png (Service Medal) Volcano[CO]; Dark; -DK-; pancho; Sean; Tacbat; Tankhunter
-22 -4
MBT-S05-04-Breakthrough
(-149)
22 OCT 2021
MOV.png (Medal of Valor) Colebrook(5)
SM.png (Service Medal) Roguesnake[CO]; CavGunner; Colebrook; Fidel; Gibsonm; Pariah; Valleyboy
+17
CM R.png (Command Medal) Dark
SM R.png (Service Medal) Dark[CO]; -DK-; Tankhunter; Volcano; ZERO
-20 -3
MBT-S06-25-Op Market (BAOR)
(+475)
29 OCT 2021
CM.png (Command Medal) Roguesnake
SM.png (Service Medal) Roguesnake[CO]; 12Alfa; CavGunner; Colebrook; Gibsonm; Pariah; Valleyboy
+22
SM R.png (Service Medal) -DK-[CO]; Dark; pancho; Sean; Tankhunter; Volcano; ZERO
-7 +15
MBT-S07-05-Exploitation
(+302)
06 NOV 2021
SM.png (Service Medal) CavGunner[CO]; Colebrook; Gibsonm; Pariah; Roguesnake; Valleyboy
+6
CM R.png (Command Medal) -DK-
SM R.png (Service Medal) -DK-[CO]; Dark; Poofydoodle; Sean; Tankhunter; Volcano
-21 -15
MBT-S08-26-Power Strike (BAOR)-4267a
(+494)
13 NOV 2021
MOM.png (Medal of Merit) Roguesnake(7)
MOV.png (Medal of Valor) Roguesnake(5)
SM.png (Service Medal) Colebrook[CO]; Blue6; CavGunner; Fidel; Gibsonm; Pariah; Roguesnake; Valleyboy
+38
SM R.png (Service Medal) Volcano[CO]; Dark; -DK-; pancho; Poofydoodle; Sean; Tankhunter; ZERO
-8 +30
MBT-S09-07-Head-to-Head-4268
(+20)
19 NOV 2021
CM.png (Command Medal) Colebrook
MOV.png (Medal of Valor) Colebrook(5)
ESM.png (Exceptional Service Medal) CavGunner; Colebrook; Gibsonm; Roguesnake; Valleyboy
SM.png (Service Medal) Colebrook[CO]; 12Alfa; CavGunner; Fidel; Gibsonm; Pariah; Roguesnake; Valleyboy
+58
CM R.png (Command Medal) Tankhunter
ESM R.png (Exceptional Service Medal) Dark; -DK-; Tankhunter; Volcano
SM R.png (Service Medal) Tankhunter[CO]; Dark; -DK-; pancho; Sean; Volcano
-41 +17
Total Scenario Score
(+1392)
+190 -141 +49
Campaign Score
(Scenario+Awards)
+1441