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JMcL63
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Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Sun, 08 July 2007 02:51
As I noted elsewhere, Badger and I were playing Scenario 40: Breakout at Klin recently, and 2 games gave us the feeling that this scenario suffers from serious balance problems. This feeling seems to be confirmed by the 83-17% score in favour of the Germans after 94 games as reported by the DoW:M44 battle reports.

Badger and I discussed this at length after our games. We came to the conclusion that the main issue is the number of terrain-objective victory medals the Germans enjoy. What with Golyadi, Nekrasino, and exit VP, the Germans enjoy 4-5 or more potential banners which don't require eliminating Russian units. This just seems too much.

Most important in this respect it seemed to us are the 2 medals for Golyadi. In this section the Germans have a good chance of quickly killing 2 Russian units, then grabbing as many as 2 objective victory medals; ie. half to 2/3 of the total required VP. What Badger and I found ourselves thinking was that perhaps Golyadi and Nekrasino should be worth 1 VP each in total. This could be 1 VP if you hold either of the town hexes; or 1 VP if you hold both of the town hexes. Either way, we felt that 1 VP/hex was a bit much.

Do any other members who've played this scenario agree that it is unbalanced and needs some changes? Do you think that Badger and I have hit upon the significant features? Or anything else for that matter? Wink

[Updated on: Sun, 08 July 2007 03:02]

      
Randwulf
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Sun, 08 July 2007 05:08
It is a tough one for the Russian player, as was history.

The big thing for the Russian is to fall back those units stuck way out there, yeah they have sandbags they will loose if they move, but the holes in the lines are so big you can drive a tank thru them... literaly... and remember if the German takes an objective hex he has to keep the unit there to count it, that ties down a unit.

I think the biggest problem with this scenario is the Russians are dug in everywhere, and that leads to a come and get me attack plan with no mobility. Maneuver is the key to any battle, if you can not move you are a sitting target.

The German plan... over run the whole area. You don't need kills to win, but you do need to get past the blockers to head for the goal line. ( Back to that maneuver thing )

The big thing here is that it is a one sided historical scenario and that the sides should be swapped and replayed.


      
kaptainkobold
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Sun, 08 July 2007 10:59
The Germans won in reality, so perhaps the lack of balance is intentional. One of the things I like about Memoir '44 scenarios is that they don't need to be balanced; the idea is that you play them twice, swapping sides.

Now if an historical scenario constantly has the losing side winning every game, then there's a problem Smile

      
Taylor
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Sun, 08 July 2007 12:11
Got to agree with Kaptainkobold, you should play each scenario as not many of them are balanced. Although I think this is one of the worst.

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JMcL63
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 09 July 2007 00:29
I understand how M44 scenarios aren't supposed to be balanced, and that you're supposed to be playing them back-to-back. My point here is that this scenario struck Badger and I as perhaps just going a bit too far with this, to the point where it might actually prove to be a dull scenario.

I mean to say, Randwulf is obviously right about the Russian tactics, although they do need the time to fall back properly. In the games we played on Friday, my (German) right flank forces were able to attack and mop up the Russians on that flank in a turn or three. The main thing is that I was able to get moving on turn 1, and keep moving thereafter.

I think Randwulf is mistaken to consider that occupying Golyadi ties down German units. Exactly what else is the German player going to do with those right flank infantry in any case? If he can get them into Golyadi he's quids in: he has VP, and units well-positioned to cover the Russians' flank while he prepares to grind up the centre (any Russian attempt to retake Golyadi would be utterly foolish IMO, even if they haven't lost both their forward infantry units on that flank).

Anyway, all of this is kind of missing the point. Reading the scenario's historical background tells us that Golyadi was a diversion for the main event, which was the breakout to Nekrasino. What worries me is that the large numbers of terrain objective VP means that the decision will all too often be around Golyadi, so that actually breaking through to Nekrasino is irrelevant. In other words it's perhaps as much a matter of poor scenario design as it is of play balance.

So I return to my original thought: are there too many objective VP available? Should there be only 2 terrain-objective VP instead of 4? Should there be a requirement for the Germans to gain at least 1 VP from exiting units? In other words: should something be done to this scenario so that Golyadi is the sideshow it was in the historical operation, and the breakthrough to Nekrasino is the main event? Wink

[Updated on: Mon, 09 July 2007 00:30]

      
Randwulf
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 09 July 2007 05:01
Now I do have to agree that there are to many Vic medals.

Golyadi has two medals and they are way to easy to take. I mean really, once you mop up the few scattered units trying to protect them and take the town, you have most of the medals needed to win, so why even try to cross the river??? Right?

Normaly I don't even take an objective hex until the very last, just because I don't want to tie down a unit.

      
JMcL63
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 09 July 2007 10:03
Randwulf wrote on Mon, 09 July 2007 04:01

Now I do have to agree that there are to many Vic medals.

Golyadi has two medals and they are way to easy to take. I mean really, once you mop up the few scattered units trying to protect them and take the town, you have most of the medals needed to win, so why even try to cross the river??? Right?

Normaly I don't even take an objective hex until the very last, just because I don't want to tie down a unit.



You've got my point about Golyadi Randwulf: the diversion in the historical operation can provide 2/3 of the VP the Germans need, making the main event the sideshow. Looking again at the scenario map I am reminded of the wisdom of your comments about the deceptive safety, for the Russians, of all those defensive positions. It may be that the stats are based on too many attempts to stand and fight everywhere by the Russians.

In any event, if Golyadi was worth just 1 terrain objective VP, then at least half of the German VP would essentially have to come through the attack towards Nekrasino. And, like I said: holding Golyadi is doubly useful for the Germans because it essentially prevents the Russians from manoeuvring round their open left flank- unless they're very lucky they'll take attacks at 2 dice if they try to do so in the face of Germans in Golyadi. Wink
      
kaptainkobold
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 09 July 2007 11:28
I wonder whether the intent is for the two towns to be worth one medal each, rather than one medal for each of the four hexes. That way the Germans would pick up no more than 2 medals for occupying towns (the medal on each hex denoting that control of either hex counts).

Just a thought.
      
JMcL63
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 09 July 2007 11:47
kaptainkobold wrote on Mon, 09 July 2007 10:28

I wonder whether the intent is for the two towns to be worth one medal each, rather than one medal for each of the four hexes. That way the Germans would pick up no more than 2 medals for occupying towns (the medal on each hex denoting that control of either hex counts).

Just a thought.


This is something that Badger and I thought about on Friday last. I would say that this interpretation could be made from the rules for the scenario. Unfortunately the text isn't clear enough, so most people will just go with the 1 VP/hex interpretation which is the standard for M44. Applying this interpretation would go a long way towards improving this scenario IMO. Wink
      
JMcL63
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 09 July 2007 11:50
Here is the relevant text from the scenario:

"The towns of Golyadia and Nekrasino count as a Victory Medal. Place an Objective Medal on each of these hexes. As long as the Axis unit remains on the hex, it continues to count toward the Axis victory. If the unit moves off or is eliminated, it no longer counts."

You see what I mean that this could mean that each town is worth 1 medal overall? But there are 4 medals on the board. Also, there are no rules to specify how many of the 2 hexes of each town must be held to gain the medal. All of this leads to the 1 VP/hex interpretation as standard. Wink
      
Randwulf
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 09 July 2007 13:54
I was looking at that also... wording is not very clear, and the medals on the board do suggest otherwise...

maybe we can get Eric or Richard to confirm the VC, I know Eric last updated it may 12th 07??? thats less than 2 months ago???

I don't have my books with me to look up the hard version of it.

      
JMcL63
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 09 July 2007 13:59
I can confirm that the printed version and the online version match. Wink
      
Randwulf
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 09 July 2007 14:12
Thanks J-Mac Very Happy I just sent a PM to Eric, maybe if he is not to busy, he could look it over and tell us, yeah we found a boo boo, or no, we are just cry babys... Laughing

any way... I think only one medal for each town, not one for each hex. Other wise there woulds be no reason to even try to cross the frozen river???
      
Brummbar
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 09 July 2007 16:26
JMcL63 wrote on Mon, 09 July 2007 02:50

Here is the relevant text from the scenario:

"The towns of Golyadia and Nekrasino count as a Victory Medal. Place an Objective Medal on each of these hexes. As long as the Axis unit remains on the hex, it continues to count toward the Axis victory. If the unit moves off or is eliminated, it no longer counts."

You see what I mean that this could mean that each town is worth 1 medal overall? But there are 4 medals on the board. Also, there are no rules to specify how many of the 2 hexes of each town must be held to gain the medal. All of this leads to the 1 VP/hex interpretation as standard. Wink


Good point JMcL63...I think reducing the town objectives to be worth 1 medal for both town hexes (or, alternately, 1 hex in each of the towns has an ojbjective on it) in each case would shift this scenario (and my opinion of it) considerably.
      
Taylor
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 09 July 2007 19:48
There is another scenario, cant think which one at the moment where if you hold either of the two hexes that make up a town you get a VP, but if you hold both you still only get the 1 VP.
I Agree with you that this would balance this a bit. You could also consider awarding the russians a VP for holding Nekrasino

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JMcL63
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 09 July 2007 20:54
Taylor wrote on Mon, 09 July 2007 18:48

There is another scenario, cant think which one at the moment where if you hold either of the two hexes that make up a town you get a VP, but if you hold both you still only get the 1 VP.
I Agree with you that this would balance this a bit. You could also consider awarding the russians a VP for holding Nekrasino

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That's the sort of thing I'm thinking about: 1 VP if you hold 1 or both of the 2 hexes; 0 VP if you hold 1 and your opponent holds the other. I'm not so sure about giving the Russians terrain-objective VP in this one. It just doesn't feel right to me. And denying the Germans terrain-objective VP through the 2nd option above is almost the same as giving the Russians terrain-objective VP of their own. Wink
      
badger89
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Tue, 10 July 2007 17:55
i think that 1vp for holding both towns or maybe 1 medal/vp on the town furthest away would be the best option.
whilst i understand that the germans won this in real life,if you play as axis and start with two right flank cards in your hand then you have got pretty unlucky to lose this scenario.
Im determined to win it as the russians thought just to take that smirk of jmcl63's face and also to get my victory margin up!!!
      
RBorg
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 16 July 2007 05:54
Yes, the text for this scenario #40 should be changed.
I checked back on our play records and each two hex town was only worth one objective medal.

Updated text - SCENARIO #40 BREAKOUT AT KLIN
The towns of Golyadia (two hexes) and Nekrasino (two hexes) each count as one Victory Medal for the Axis player. Place one Objective Medal on each town (in between the two hexes would be best). As long as the Axis unit remains on both hexes of a town, it continues to count as one medal toward the Axis victory. If one or both units move off or one or both are eliminated, it no longer counts.

Richard Borg
      
yangtze
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 16 July 2007 11:53
Thanks for that, this makes life a little easier for the Russians Smile

I also recommend a mobile defense on the Russian left (i.e. run away!), hoping to tempt some German units to pursue too far ahead of their comrades, and bring them in range of the Russian armoured units for a well-timed counterstrike.

[Updated on: Mon, 16 July 2007 13:26]

      
badger89
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 16 July 2007 14:40
running away is the only option youve got unless you get a lucky barrage against the tanks.
But this all does depend on the germans not getting a good card to start the scenario on that side of the board though.
anway not the rules are more balanced im gonna go and win as the russians.
      
Taylor
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Mon, 16 July 2007 23:22
That looks like that will even thigs up a bit

thanks Richard

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JMcL63
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Re:Breakout at Klin: badly unbalanced? Wed, 18 July 2007 17:21
Thanks for taking the time to check and correct this Richard. Wink
      
    
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