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"Playing Better; Cost/benefit, economics of force" Topic


5 Posts

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World War Two on the Land

268 hits since 17 Jan 2019
©1994-2019 Bill Armintrout
Comments or corrections?

Grumpsh17 Jan 2019 6:28 a.m. PST

Both sides start out equal, how do you effect concentration of force? How can you apply more force than the enemy when they have an equal amount to work with?

If both sides attack everything everywhere the game will be a draw, so you want to attack an enemy unit with at least a three to one ratio, and of course so does your enemy. or they should. If they attack two units at a two to one while you are able to make one attack at four to one, you will most likely destroy your target before their two attacks get theirs.

Corollary to this is the over application of force; You have the choice of one five to one attack or a three to one and a two to one or five one to one attacks. What is best? The five to one has the highest chance of success but the lowest chance of return, it will only return one victory. The two attacks of three to one and two to one have a moderate chance of one success but a fair chance at two successes. The five one to one have the lowest chance of success but the highest possible return. The middle choice, the a moderate chance of success and fair chance of better than one success would be the best choice. Though you will occasionally lose to the five to one style player. The slow methodical player can put one over on occasion also, but the player who controls his risks will win more often.


Some units will 'fascinate' the opponent and they will take extra measures to attack units they greatly fear; snipers, flamethrowers and medium machine gun teams seem to draw a lot of unwarranted attention. 'Weak' units can attract strong ones, looking for an easy kill. Put a cheap armored car on the table and the enemy will devote a tank to stalking it the entire game, you 100 point expense just occupied 200 points of the enemy. In the end, if he kills the armored car he has spent 200 to gain 100. When a 50 point bazooka team intimidates a 240 point panzer into inaction or pointless maneuver, that's a great trade on your part. You have 950 points left to attack his 760 points, somewhere you are going to get your 3 or 4 to one attack.

The point is, to know what you are spending and what you may get. Economy of force is a judgement call, and you must keep the value of the units in mind, and not emotions cloud your judgement.

torokchar Supporting Member of TMP17 Jan 2019 6:38 a.m. PST

Many times an opponent will defend the entire table length or attack across the entire table length – if your opponent spreads out the best tactic is to concentrate your force and push hard before he can adjust or re-deploy his forces.


For this I like a fully mechanized/motorized force – move fast across the table and cut through his lines before he can react.

Rallynow Supporting Member of TMP17 Jan 2019 9:05 p.m. PST

This is the reason I play historical scenarios rather than points.

Walking Sailor18 Jan 2019 7:53 a.m. PST

On a multi player table I find using an economy of force defense, and sending a break through force to lead another player's attack or artillery (direct fire goes there, indirect fire stays and maneuvers by fire) to shoot someone else on to the objective, usually surprises opponents. But it does take some co-ordination over who gets to play with which toys in someone else's sector. And (warning) your flankers better be ready to send quick support, just in case.

Grumpsh18 Jan 2019 10:25 a.m. PST

At first I thought the equal points on each side made for moot games, 1:1 doesn't seem like a normal wargame. But consider that the fighting front of platoon is the width of the table. If you consistent an abnormal amount of force in an area, it becomes a target of larger forces itself. So nearly equal forces is not that unrealistic.

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