How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

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Rhaeg
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How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by Rhaeg » Thu Aug 27, 2020 11:24 pm

Disclaimer: I do not post a lot, but I made a long post today and that got me thinking and since I couldn't stop that thinking I now have another very long post. Do skip it if you don't like very long posts. Also bear in mind that as long-winded as it is, it is still just an opinion. I think I give arguments and try to make it a somewhat coherent piece, but please see it as a starting point for discussion. So if you have very different ideas about the continuation of AO, do drop them here.

Though the inclusion of 2 (optional) scenarios set in Finland without any Finnish troops and your trusty German core force instead was disappointing to me, it was only a small part of the AO 1939 DLC. While IMO the effort involved in creating those 2 scenarios would have been better spent adding more content to underrepresented Poland, I think the real scary thing here is the suggestion/perception/possible scenario/... that this may be the way of going forward with Axis Operations. Essentially I'm afraid this whole PC2 (European) Axis undertaking will end up being "German Operations" with (every now and then) a couple of Italian and Romanian units as auxiliary sideshows no one ever cares about.

AO started of so nicely with SCW and including all these cool Spanish scenarios and unit models and the allied AI system which was novel and great for that situation (some people's unhappiness with the implementation notwithstanding)! Let's go further into AO with SCW in mind, not the AO 1939 way of dealing with non-German forces... and let's not do it as the base PC2 campaign did either.

If you want to make an "Axis Operations" campaign, I think the Axis should be presented well and not only the Germans. Not just because of the name "Axis Operations", but because you (the devs) seem to realise that adding new things to this decades old genre is a necessary breath of fresh air. Adding unknown scenarios (eg. Saar offensive) is extremely valuable, I think, but the main attraction of the great SCW was the addition of both unknown scenarios AND all these cool new (old) units we never or rarely get to see. Including nations (with their units) other than Germany into the rest of AO would be a major attraction, just as the inclusion of all those cool units in SCW was. So do not let the major attraction become a sideshow! If you go with the all German route and just throw the occasional Italian(/Romanian/Hungarian/none(RIP Finland)) auxiliary force in the mix we will be going for a "let's redo PC1 Grand Campaign in PC2" scenario. That is not the innovation I saw in SCW.

The only way I see the Axis Operations become Axis Operations is by not only incorporating previously unknown, new scenarios, but also by putting some amount of focus on the inclusion of cool/new/lesser known/iconic troops other than the German troops. How to make this happen? I'm sure it's obvious that ignoring these completely as was done in AO 1939 with Finland is not the way to do this. Dumping the occasional Italian auxiliary units into a scenario as was done in the base PC2 campaign is not interesting at all and certainly not innovative either.

What needs to be done I think is to add core forces other than Germany's. You can go as far as you want with this. You could go all crazy and have Italian, Romanian, Finnish, Hungarian and Croatian core forces next to the German one. Well, the Finnish seems to be out of the equasion and I can live with that. But there are several degrees of doing that and Italy at least deserves its separate core force, assuming you will revisit North Africa at some point.

There are two main advantages to having multiple core forces under your control other than a German one, I think. Firstly and most importantly, it creates a bond: these are your units and you take them along with you through a very lengthy game, even if they will only show up once in a while. Auxiliary units are cannon fodder, I don't care about them. I do not care about units because they are German or not, German aux units are meaningless to me as well: if they go through the meat shredder, so be it. Shrug. Core force units are mine and losing even one means a serious defeat. Secondly, it makes sure these non-German forces are getting used. The base PC2 implementation of the North African conflict was really underwhelming IMO. Why should I waste any of my prestige on these temporarily available craps? And even if non-German forces would be available as part of your one single core force you would rather spend prestige to fill core slots with German panzers and planes than on any serious number of Italians (Romanians/Hungarian/...). Separate core forces for separate nations means you will use them, because they will have separate core slots to fill out and a separate prestige pool. So you will both use these units and care about them. If you can think of any other mechanic to achieve this, I am all ears.

"But this will be so expensive to implement, we have to think of our budget!". This system has already been done by Order of Battle and it did wonders for their African DLC: I used the Italians and took them with me and enjoyed them just as I did my German units! You had less core slots for your Italians compared to the German core, but you can balance that any way you see fit. But they were there: Italian planes, infantry, artillery, inferior tanks and I cared for them because they kept going with me from mission to mission (hint: Italians can also fight before the 1941-43 African campaign and they can appear in other theatres of war as well! Just like Germans!). And luckily, you can implement this to several degrees. You don't have to implement each and every Axis nation. Finland has already been thrown out and you don't have to do Croatia. But at the very least do Italy properly: it is one of the 3 proper Axis nations and I assume you are keeping Japan for something entirely different than AO. So let's take a look at Italy and perhaps Romania as an optional Axis nation core force?

As far as Italy goes, I don't think I have to spend any words on Italian units. Iconic (and less iconic) Italian units have been implemented before. Great! All we need is to put them into an Italian core force instead of an aux one and find some use for them. You can't go through all the trouble of creating a core force separate from your German one and then having it show up in only 3 or 4 scenarios. So what scenarios can we think of for our Italians?

A lot actually, and I'm no expert even. Here are only some general ideas from the top of my head (so some might not be good after all for whatever reason and some might be content for just 1 scenario and others for multiple. The point is: if you are looking for new and original scenarios, there's plenty for Italy that could be of Saar-level quality, me thinks):
  • The 1940 invasion of British Somaliland;
  • The 1940 invasion of France (1 scenario only maybe, but still);
  • The Italian invasion of Greece in 1940-1941 (possible interaction with the German invasion of Greece in 1941: if the player has completed Italian scenarios in Greece, the Italians (represented by your Italian core forces) will start out with more territory);
  • The attack on Egypt and retreat into Libya in 1940-1941;
  • Defending Ethiopia in 1941;
  • Fighting alongside the German Afrikakorps in 1941-43: this alone warrants implementing a separate Italian core, see what I said above, see Order of Battle. No more meaningless Italian sideshow;
  • Involvement on the Eastern Front from 1941 until Stalingrad, or beyond in an ahistorical scenario in which the Italians survive the Stalingrad debacle.
I do not expect you to implement all of these theatres of war at all. I just want to point out that there is more than enough possible content to justify a separate Italian core force with unique unit models. So many options for one of the 3 core Axis countries in Axis Operations! It is worth it for the Afrikakorps scenarios alone, me thinks. Also, I am ignoring any naval scenarios here, because I am assuming you may want to rethink the implementation of naval units when you get to Pacific scenarios. If you want to do naval stuff in AO, there is even more content for Italy in the mediterranean!

And now let's go crazy and see if we can think of some original content for a 3rd Axis nation that is not Germany or Italy (or Japan) and that could perhaps use its own core force: Romania. Are there any places you could use your Romanian core forces? A quick google search taught me the Romanians had their 3rd and 4th armies operating on the Eastern front. Let's simplify and merge these into 1 core force. These units could then play a role in:
  • The siege of Odessa;
  • Operation München (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_M%C3%BCnchen);
  • Sevastopol;
  • Any other Ukrainian 1941-1942 scenarios. I'll forgive you if Romanians did not happen to be present for that specific scenario: that's not the level of detail I find interesting. I would accept them in any Army Group South 1941-Stalingrad scenario;
  • Stalingrad;
  • Ahistorical post Stalingrad scenarios if your Romanian core survives.
You could easily get the same amount of scenarios as SCW, making creating unique Romanian models worth the time and effort. Some suggestions for unique Romanian unit models:
  • Unique Romanian infantry (including mounted);
  • R-2 light tanks = Panzer 35(t) (hey, you already have these models! W00t!);
  • TACAM R-2;
  • IAR fighter and bomber units (Romania had its own planes and they weren't all that bad even);
  • Take your pick from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_R ... rld_War_II
So many options for Romania and for me personally it would be entirely optional. But at least do right by Italy, please. And also: I loved the allied AI mechanic in SCW (unlike some), but it would make no sense at all for units answering to German command in Africa or USSR. And I also understand that devs are likely very far already with 1940 AO DLC, so any suggestions for 1940 content might not be practical at all. But that takes nothing away from the core of my argument:

these are the Axis Operations, not the re-implementation of the PC1 German Grand Campaign. It started out great with SCW, but multiple core forces (at least 1 for Italy) are needed to make the continuation meaningful.

My 2 cents.

DarkBlueInk
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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by DarkBlueInk » Fri Aug 28, 2020 4:26 am

Count me in! If they make it, I will buy it.

Kerensky
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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by Kerensky » Fri Aug 28, 2020 5:50 am

That level of content would require the Axis Operations Grand Campaign to grow even more than it's already staggering projected size...

I dunno how I feel about Panzer Corps 2: Axis Operations 1941: Ostfront...

You think people are sour about 'only' 6 scenarios of Poland, you ain't seen nothing yet if we try to cram Afrika Korps and Barbarossa (and Balkans that base game PzC2 skipped over) into one DLC. :P

Obviously the devs need to consider what the players want, because if no one buys the product, that is total failure.
But it's clear the playerbase is maybe a bit too large to ever have real consensus anymore. Some people really liked Spain and the 3 faction system, some people absolutely could not adapt to it. Some people really like the unified command structure that is the hallmark of 1939 (sorry Slovakia, sorry Finland), they like having full control back and are having a much, much easier time with the content...

ADMIRAL3
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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by ADMIRAL3 » Fri Aug 28, 2020 7:37 am

Rhaeg wrote:
Thu Aug 27, 2020 11:24 pm
Disclaimer: I do not post a lot, but I made a long post today and that got me thinking and since I couldn't stop that thinking I now have another very long post. Do skip it if you don't like very long posts. Also bear in mind that as long-winded as it is, it is still just an opinion. I think I give arguments and try to make it a somewhat coherent piece, but please see it as a starting point for discussion. So if you have very different ideas about the continuation of AO, do drop them here.

Though the inclusion of 2 (optional) scenarios set in Finland without any Finnish troops and your trusty German core force instead was disappointing to me, it was only a small part of the AO 1939 DLC. While IMO the effort involved in creating those 2 scenarios would have been better spent adding more content to underrepresented Poland, I think the real scary thing here is the suggestion/perception/possible scenario/... that this may be the way of going forward with Axis Operations. Essentially I'm afraid this whole PC2 (European) Axis undertaking will end up being "German Operations" with (every now and then) a couple of Italian and Romanian units as auxiliary sideshows no one ever cares about.

AO started of so nicely with SCW and including all these cool Spanish scenarios and unit models and the allied AI system which was novel and great for that situation (some people's unhappiness with the implementation notwithstanding)! Let's go further into AO with SCW in mind, not the AO 1939 way of dealing with non-German forces... and let's not do it as the base PC2 campaign did either.

If you want to make an "Axis Operations" campaign, I think the Axis should be presented well and not only the Germans. Not just because of the name "Axis Operations", but because you (the devs) seem to realise that adding new things to this decades old genre is a necessary breath of fresh air. Adding unknown scenarios (eg. Saar offensive) is extremely valuable, I think, but the main attraction of the great SCW was the addition of both unknown scenarios AND all these cool new (old) units we never or rarely get to see. Including nations (with their units) other than Germany into the rest of AO would be a major attraction, just as the inclusion of all those cool units in SCW was. So do not let the major attraction become a sideshow! If you go with the all German route and just throw the occasional Italian(/Romanian/Hungarian/none(RIP Finland)) auxiliary force in the mix we will be going for a "let's redo PC1 Grand Campaign in PC2" scenario. That is not the innovation I saw in SCW.

The only way I see the Axis Operations become Axis Operations is by not only incorporating previously unknown, new scenarios, but also by putting some amount of focus on the inclusion of cool/new/lesser known/iconic troops other than the German troops. How to make this happen? I'm sure it's obvious that ignoring these completely as was done in AO 1939 with Finland is not the way to do this. Dumping the occasional Italian auxiliary units into a scenario as was done in the base PC2 campaign is not interesting at all and certainly not innovative either.

What needs to be done I think is to add core forces other than Germany's. You can go as far as you want with this. You could go all crazy and have Italian, Romanian, Finnish, Hungarian and Croatian core forces next to the German one. Well, the Finnish seems to be out of the equasion and I can live with that. But there are several degrees of doing that and Italy at least deserves its separate core force, assuming you will revisit North Africa at some point.

There are two main advantages to having multiple core forces under your control other than a German one, I think. Firstly and most importantly, it creates a bond: these are your units and you take them along with you through a very lengthy game, even if they will only show up once in a while. Auxiliary units are cannon fodder, I don't care about them. I do not care about units because they are German or not, German aux units are meaningless to me as well: if they go through the meat shredder, so be it. Shrug. Core force units are mine and losing even one means a serious defeat. Secondly, it makes sure these non-German forces are getting used. The base PC2 implementation of the North African conflict was really underwhelming IMO. Why should I waste any of my prestige on these temporarily available craps? And even if non-German forces would be available as part of your one single core force you would rather spend prestige to fill core slots with German panzers and planes than on any serious number of Italians (Romanians/Hungarian/...). Separate core forces for separate nations means you will use them, because they will have separate core slots to fill out and a separate prestige pool. So you will both use these units and care about them. If you can think of any other mechanic to achieve this, I am all ears.

"But this will be so expensive to implement, we have to think of our budget!". This system has already been done by Order of Battle and it did wonders for their African DLC: I used the Italians and took them with me and enjoyed them just as I did my German units! You had less core slots for your Italians compared to the German core, but you can balance that any way you see fit. But they were there: Italian planes, infantry, artillery, inferior tanks and I cared for them because they kept going with me from mission to mission (hint: Italians can also fight before the 1941-43 African campaign and they can appear in other theatres of war as well! Just like Germans!). And luckily, you can implement this to several degrees. You don't have to implement each and every Axis nation. Finland has already been thrown out and you don't have to do Croatia. But at the very least do Italy properly: it is one of the 3 proper Axis nations and I assume you are keeping Japan for something entirely different than AO. So let's take a look at Italy and perhaps Romania as an optional Axis nation core force?

As far as Italy goes, I don't think I have to spend any words on Italian units. Iconic (and less iconic) Italian units have been implemented before. Great! All we need is to put them into an Italian core force instead of an aux one and find some use for them. You can't go through all the trouble of creating a core force separate from your German one and then having it show up in only 3 or 4 scenarios. So what scenarios can we think of for our Italians?

A lot actually, and I'm no expert even. Here are only some general ideas from the top of my head (so some might not be good after all for whatever reason and some might be content for just 1 scenario and others for multiple. The point is: if you are looking for new and original scenarios, there's plenty for Italy that could be of Saar-level quality, me thinks):
  • The 1940 invasion of British Somaliland;
  • The 1940 invasion of France (1 scenario only maybe, but still);
  • The Italian invasion of Greece in 1940-1941 (possible interaction with the German invasion of Greece in 1941: if the player has completed Italian scenarios in Greece, the Italians (represented by your Italian core forces) will start out with more territory);
  • The attack on Egypt and retreat into Libya in 1940-1941;
  • Defending Ethiopia in 1941;
  • Fighting alongside the German Afrikakorps in 1941-43: this alone warrants implementing a separate Italian core, see what I said above, see Order of Battle. No more meaningless Italian sideshow;
  • Involvement on the Eastern Front from 1941 until Stalingrad, or beyond in an ahistorical scenario in which the Italians survive the Stalingrad debacle.
I do not expect you to implement all of these theatres of war at all. I just want to point out that there is more than enough possible content to justify a separate Italian core force with unique unit models. So many options for one of the 3 core Axis countries in Axis Operations! It is worth it for the Afrikakorps scenarios alone, me thinks. Also, I am ignoring any naval scenarios here, because I am assuming you may want to rethink the implementation of naval units when you get to Pacific scenarios. If you want to do naval stuff in AO, there is even more content for Italy in the mediterranean!

And now let's go crazy and see if we can think of some original content for a 3rd Axis nation that is not Germany or Italy (or Japan) and that could perhaps use its own core force: Romania. Are there any places you could use your Romanian core forces? A quick google search taught me the Romanians had their 3rd and 4th armies operating on the Eastern front. Let's simplify and merge these into 1 core force. These units could then play a role in:
  • The siege of Odessa;
  • Operation München (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_M%C3%BCnchen);
  • Sevastopol;
  • Any other Ukrainian 1941-1942 scenarios. I'll forgive you if Romanians did not happen to be present for that specific scenario: that's not the level of detail I find interesting. I would accept them in any Army Group South 1941-Stalingrad scenario;
  • Stalingrad;
  • Ahistorical post Stalingrad scenarios if your Romanian core survives.
You could easily get the same amount of scenarios as SCW, making creating unique Romanian models worth the time and effort. Some suggestions for unique Romanian unit models:
  • Unique Romanian infantry (including mounted);
  • R-2 light tanks = Panzer 35(t) (hey, you already have these models! W00t!);
  • TACAM R-2;
  • IAR fighter and bomber units (Romania had its own planes and they weren't all that bad even);
  • Take your pick from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_R ... rld_War_II
So many options for Romania and for me personally it would be entirely optional. But at least do right by Italy, please. And also: I loved the allied AI mechanic in SCW (unlike some), but it would make no sense at all for units answering to German command in Africa or USSR. And I also understand that devs are likely very far already with 1940 AO DLC, so any suggestions for 1940 content might not be practical at all. But that takes nothing away from the core of my argument:
makes
these are the Axis Operations, not the re-implementation of the PC1 German Grand Campaign. It started out great with SCW, but multiple core forces (at least 1 for Italy) are needed to make the continuation meaningful.

My 2 cents.
Agree 100% and not because I am Italian . This proposal makes sense and can give a tremendous boost to PzC2 . The universally applauded SCW DLC is a clear proof. LBM

ADMIRAL3
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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by ADMIRAL3 » Fri Aug 28, 2020 7:41 am

...and...don't forget to improve the units' and battle sounds! Actually embarassing.LBM

Kerensky
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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by Kerensky » Fri Aug 28, 2020 8:10 am

ADMIRAL3 wrote:
Fri Aug 28, 2020 7:37 am
The universally applauded SCW DLC is a clear proof. LBM
Ehhhhh I think the verdict is still out on this... Steam user recent reviews for Panzer Corps 2 dipped into 'Mixed' while Spanish Civil War was running, and Spanish Civil War itself is still at an uncomfortable 'Mixed' rating as of this writing.
Meanwhile, the launch of 1939 and accompanying patches have raised Panzer Corps 2 'recent reviews' into a streak of positive reviews. So far at least, as 1939 is still brand new so this could dramatically change very quickly.

Content that isn't so bone crushingly hard, plus total command and control and not having to futz with Spanish Allies is perhaps more controversial than we realized... :?:
Last edited by Kerensky on Fri Aug 28, 2020 8:11 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by GUNDOBALDO08 » Fri Aug 28, 2020 8:11 am

ADMIRAL3 wrote:
Fri Aug 28, 2020 7:37 am
Rhaeg wrote:
Thu Aug 27, 2020 11:24 pm
Disclaimer: I do not post a lot, but I made a long post today and that got me thinking and since I couldn't stop that thinking I now have another very long post. Do skip it if you don't like very long posts. Also bear in mind that as long-winded as it is, it is still just an opinion. I think I give arguments and try to make it a somewhat coherent piece, but please see it as a starting point for discussion. So if you have very different ideas about the continuation of AO, do drop them here.

Though the inclusion of 2 (optional) scenarios set in Finland without any Finnish troops and your trusty German core force instead was disappointing to me, it was only a small part of the AO 1939 DLC. While IMO the effort involved in creating those 2 scenarios would have been better spent adding more content to underrepresented Poland, I think the real scary thing here is the suggestion/perception/possible scenario/... that this may be the way of going forward with Axis Operations. Essentially I'm afraid this whole PC2 (European) Axis undertaking will end up being "German Operations" with (every now and then) a couple of Italian and Romanian units as auxiliary sideshows no one ever cares about.

AO started of so nicely with SCW and including all these cool Spanish scenarios and unit models and the allied AI system which was novel and great for that situation (some people's unhappiness with the implementation notwithstanding)! Let's go further into AO with SCW in mind, not the AO 1939 way of dealing with non-German forces... and let's not do it as the base PC2 campaign did either.

If you want to make an "Axis Operations" campaign, I think the Axis should be presented well and not only the Germans. Not just because of the name "Axis Operations", but because you (the devs) seem to realise that adding new things to this decades old genre is a necessary breath of fresh air. Adding unknown scenarios (eg. Saar offensive) is extremely valuable, I think, but the main attraction of the great SCW was the addition of both unknown scenarios AND all these cool new (old) units we never or rarely get to see. Including nations (with their units) other than Germany into the rest of AO would be a major attraction, just as the inclusion of all those cool units in SCW was. So do not let the major attraction become a sideshow! If you go with the all German route and just throw the occasional Italian(/Romanian/Hungarian/none(RIP Finland)) auxiliary force in the mix we will be going for a "let's redo PC1 Grand Campaign in PC2" scenario. That is not the innovation I saw in SCW.

The only way I see the Axis Operations become Axis Operations is by not only incorporating previously unknown, new scenarios, but also by putting some amount of focus on the inclusion of cool/new/lesser known/iconic troops other than the German troops. How to make this happen? I'm sure it's obvious that ignoring these completely as was done in AO 1939 with Finland is not the way to do this. Dumping the occasional Italian auxiliary units into a scenario as was done in the base PC2 campaign is not interesting at all and certainly not innovative either.

What needs to be done I think is to add core forces other than Germany's. You can go as far as you want with this. You could go all crazy and have Italian, Romanian, Finnish, Hungarian and Croatian core forces next to the German one. Well, the Finnish seems to be out of the equasion and I can live with that. But there are several degrees of doing that and Italy at least deserves its separate core force, assuming you will revisit North Africa at some point.

There are two main advantages to having multiple core forces under your control other than a German one, I think. Firstly and most importantly, it creates a bond: these are your units and you take them along with you through a very lengthy game, even if they will only show up once in a while. Auxiliary units are cannon fodder, I don't care about them. I do not care about units because they are German or not, German aux units are meaningless to me as well: if they go through the meat shredder, so be it. Shrug. Core force units are mine and losing even one means a serious defeat. Secondly, it makes sure these non-German forces are getting used. The base PC2 implementation of the North African conflict was really underwhelming IMO. Why should I waste any of my prestige on these temporarily available craps? And even if non-German forces would be available as part of your one single core force you would rather spend prestige to fill core slots with German panzers and planes than on any serious number of Italians (Romanians/Hungarian/...). Separate core forces for separate nations means you will use them, because they will have separate core slots to fill out and a separate prestige pool. So you will both use these units and care about them. If you can think of any other mechanic to achieve this, I am all ears.

"But this will be so expensive to implement, we have to think of our budget!". This system has already been done by Order of Battle and it did wonders for their African DLC: I used the Italians and took them with me and enjoyed them just as I did my German units! You had less core slots for your Italians compared to the German core, but you can balance that any way you see fit. But they were there: Italian planes, infantry, artillery, inferior tanks and I cared for them because they kept going with me from mission to mission (hint: Italians can also fight before the 1941-43 African campaign and they can appear in other theatres of war as well! Just like Germans!). And luckily, you can implement this to several degrees. You don't have to implement each and every Axis nation. Finland has already been thrown out and you don't have to do Croatia. But at the very least do Italy properly: it is one of the 3 proper Axis nations and I assume you are keeping Japan for something entirely different than AO. So let's take a look at Italy and perhaps Romania as an optional Axis nation core force?

As far as Italy goes, I don't think I have to spend any words on Italian units. Iconic (and less iconic) Italian units have been implemented before. Great! All we need is to put them into an Italian core force instead of an aux one and find some use for them. You can't go through all the trouble of creating a core force separate from your German one and then having it show up in only 3 or 4 scenarios. So what scenarios can we think of for our Italians?

A lot actually, and I'm no expert even. Here are only some general ideas from the top of my head (so some might not be good after all for whatever reason and some might be content for just 1 scenario and others for multiple. The point is: if you are looking for new and original scenarios, there's plenty for Italy that could be of Saar-level quality, me thinks):
  • The 1940 invasion of British Somaliland;
  • The 1940 invasion of France (1 scenario only maybe, but still);
  • The Italian invasion of Greece in 1940-1941 (possible interaction with the German invasion of Greece in 1941: if the player has completed Italian scenarios in Greece, the Italians (represented by your Italian core forces) will start out with more territory);
  • The attack on Egypt and retreat into Libya in 1940-1941;
  • Defending Ethiopia in 1941;
  • Fighting alongside the German Afrikakorps in 1941-43: this alone warrants implementing a separate Italian core, see what I said above, see Order of Battle. No more meaningless Italian sideshow;
  • Involvement on the Eastern Front from 1941 until Stalingrad, or beyond in an ahistorical scenario in which the Italians survive the Stalingrad debacle.
I do not expect you to implement all of these theatres of war at all. I just want to point out that there is more than enough possible content to justify a separate Italian core force with unique unit models. So many options for one of the 3 core Axis countries in Axis Operations! It is worth it for the Afrikakorps scenarios alone, me thinks. Also, I am ignoring any naval scenarios here, because I am assuming you may want to rethink the implementation of naval units when you get to Pacific scenarios. If you want to do naval stuff in AO, there is even more content for Italy in the mediterranean!

And now let's go crazy and see if we can think of some original content for a 3rd Axis nation that is not Germany or Italy (or Japan) and that could perhaps use its own core force: Romania. Are there any places you could use your Romanian core forces? A quick google search taught me the Romanians had their 3rd and 4th armies operating on the Eastern front. Let's simplify and merge these into 1 core force. These units could then play a role in:
  • The siege of Odessa;
  • Operation München (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_M%C3%BCnchen);
  • Sevastopol;
  • Any other Ukrainian 1941-1942 scenarios. I'll forgive you if Romanians did not happen to be present for that specific scenario: that's not the level of detail I find interesting. I would accept them in any Army Group South 1941-Stalingrad scenario;
  • Stalingrad;
  • Ahistorical post Stalingrad scenarios if your Romanian core survives.
You could easily get the same amount of scenarios as SCW, making creating unique Romanian models worth the time and effort. Some suggestions for unique Romanian unit models:
  • Unique Romanian infantry (including mounted);
  • R-2 light tanks = Panzer 35(t) (hey, you already have these models! W00t!);
  • TACAM R-2;
  • IAR fighter and bomber units (Romania had its own planes and they weren't all that bad even);
  • Take your pick from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_R ... rld_War_II
So many options for Romania and for me personally it would be entirely optional. But at least do right by Italy, please. And also: I loved the allied AI mechanic in SCW (unlike some), but it would make no sense at all for units answering to German command in Africa or USSR. And I also understand that devs are likely very far already with 1940 AO DLC, so any suggestions for 1940 content might not be practical at all. But that takes nothing away from the core of my argument:
makes
these are the Axis Operations, not the re-implementation of the PC1 German Grand Campaign. It started out great with SCW, but multiple core forces (at least 1 for Italy) are needed to make the continuation meaningful.

My 2 cents.
Agree 100% and not because I am Italian . This proposal makes sense and can give a tremendous boost to PzC2 . The universally applauded SCW DLC is a clear proof. LBM
Totally agree, only I think there is more place for introduce Finnish, they are not more MIA. Ex: north theatre of barbarossa and siege of leningrad, attempt conquest of Murmansk as well... Etc

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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by Vorskl » Fri Aug 28, 2020 11:29 am

Slitherline can run a poll, but I highly doubt there are many fans of Italian and Romanian troops. Both are known to be very weak and inefficient warriors (British called early US troops "Our Italians"), if you want to simulate playing for IT/RO - use the cheapest equipment and only green replacement. The whole African campaign is overrated in its significance to the WWII; going into Somaliland etc battles will mean deviating the game course into something totally obscure and almost irrelevant.

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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by sapper1 » Fri Aug 28, 2020 4:36 pm

Personally I preferred '39 to SCW. That being said in my prefect world I would like a mega German campaign for the entire war with tons of scenarios. For the other Axis Allies perhaps a combined mega campaign. In any event if it supports the game I will buy the DLC. My main focus is full command German Campaigns with hopefully the ability to change the course of the war depending on the outcome of a battle.

I'd like to see PC2 continue to release DLC's over the years. Very large German 40-46 or 47, followed by the Main Allied Nation mega campaigns then minor allied nations from both sides campaigns. While the minors would be "fun" you should be losing more than winning with them due to a large number of factors.

Anyway whatever the outcome development wise I hope the game is around with new content released for years to come. Even if a DLC doesn't particularly appeal to me (SCW) I will still purchase and play it to support the company in hopes of bigger and better German campaigns.

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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by wecker » Fri Aug 28, 2020 5:08 pm

Thanks to the thoughts of Rhaeg I can now more clearly state some points after finishing the AO1939.

In my opinion you should have omitted the two finnish scenarios in AO1939 because of NO finish troops, not to mention missing Suksi Ski Troops. You could have used these two scenario places for more polish content and even 3 when omitting Denmark.

Thatg said a look to the possible future.

Rhaeg is right. I myself played also Order of Battle in North Africa and I cared for my Italians - because they got their own core slots and prestige. So i hope you will implement this in a future DAK scenario in Africa. It is simply a waste like in SCW to have italian troops just for one scenario and then you have to pick them up again in the next scenario. Use Italians - you got so nice models of Dovunques and Lancia Ro, of planes and tanks, famous for their Arty, for Bersaglieri and Alpini.

As AO1940 may come out it is clear - finish swiftly Norway and attack in the West. There a decision would be nice - either make Sichelschnitt with endpoint at early SeaLion or attack the Netherlands, conquer Paris and drive south as far as you can to establiah Vichy France.

AO1941 will be a sum of too much and I am not shure what is the best way to depict it:
Italy against Greece, german invasion of Yougoslavia and Greece and finally Crete.

I would suggest then to break the year counting and to start with either Africa or Barbarossa. Barbarossa may be split in 3 sectors North, Mitte and South.

Bye

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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by Rhaeg » Fri Aug 28, 2020 5:13 pm

Maybe I wasn't clear enough on this, but all the ideas for theatres of war and scenarios I gave are only there to show that there's enough content for these Axis countries if you want it. Like I said
I do not expect you to implement all of these theatres of war at all. I just want to point out that there is more than enough possible content to justify a separate Italian core force with unique unit models. So many options for one of the 3 core Axis countries in Axis Operations! It is worth it for the Afrikakorps scenarios alone, me thinks.
and
So many options for Romania and for me personally it would be entirely optional.
The main point I want to make is that you need these separate cores if you want to do justice to countries other than Germany: the aux system makes them completely valueless pawns no one cares about and no one likes to spend their prestige on. And since we will see at least Italians at some point if we revisit North Africa, I say that alone is reason enough to implement something like this. The aux system that was used for them simply does not work, unless you are fine with Germany, Germany, Germany even in situations were other nations played a vital part. Which they did in North Africa (and if you want a take on Stalingrad that actually shows the Soviet offensive on the flanks of the 6th Army, Romania, Italy and Hungary could use a meaningful presence there too).

If you leave out some Axis nations (Finland) and at best give the rest a meaningless presence that the player will never have a bond with (which happens when using the aux system) this will turn out to be German Operations after all.

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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by Rhaeg » Fri Aug 28, 2020 5:20 pm

wecker wrote:
Fri Aug 28, 2020 5:08 pm
Rhaeg is right. I myself played also Order of Battle in North Africa and I cared for my Italians - because they got their own core slots and prestige. So i hope you will implement this in a future DAK scenario in Africa. It is simply a waste like in SCW to have italian troops just for one scenario and then you have to pick them up again in the next scenario. Use Italians - you got so nice models of Dovunques and Lancia Ro, of planes and tanks, famous for their Arty, for Bersaglieri and Alpini.
Yes, having a separate core of Italians would have worked great in SCW already. You could have taken a few Italians with you from mission to mission, earning experience and hey, how cool is it then when these experienced units show up again when you get to the Afrikakorps scenarios or the invasion of Greece?

Or put it this way: How would we be enjoying our German troops if we would get a new set of troops each scenario and no core existed? I can guess the answer to that.

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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by Tassadar » Fri Aug 28, 2020 7:41 pm

I'm of the opinion that aside from occasional appearance as auxiliary forces minor axis and allied forces should for now be left out. Italian or Finnish campaign would be great as a separate DLC, but there are several factors, some of which just recently came to my mind, that impact this possibility in the near future. Who knows, after all the AO there might just be enough models and units to make it much easier to run a smaller DLC like that more cost effective and less risky.

For now I'm fine with occasional appearance of other factions and special units like the Azul infantry that add these extra options. Having a separate core while interesting, would make little logical sense (the player is a German general after all) and would require an overhaul of the current system - that's effort that would be better place elsewhere I think. It's doable for sure, Afrika Corps DLC in PzC 1 proves this, but I'd be more interested in having a separate story for those nations.

Also, let's stop for a second to think about the meaning of "Axis Operations" - while nations with less impact on the war would probably be an addition or later DLC if time and money allows it and interest is there, Italy and Japan can support their own independent campaigns easily, even separated into at least 2-3 separate DLC per faction. So who knows, maybe there's a subtle hint for the future in the name. Grand Pacific Campaign anyone? :)

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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by Rhaeg » Fri Aug 28, 2020 7:52 pm

Tassadar wrote:
Fri Aug 28, 2020 7:41 pm
Having a separate core while interesting, would make little logical sense (the player is a German general after all) and would require an overhaul of the current system - that's effort that would be better place elsewhere I think.
It makes perfect logical sense, since the Italians in North Africa, the Hungarians/Italians/Romanians in the USSR operated under/answered to German command.
Tassadar wrote:
Fri Aug 28, 2020 7:41 pm
It's doable for sure, Afrika Corps DLC in PzC 1 proves this, but I'd be more interested in having a separate story for those nations.

Also, let's stop for a second to think about the meaning of "Axis Operations" - while nations with less impact on the war would probably be an addition or later DLC if time and money allows it and interest is there, Italy and Japan can support their own independent campaigns easily, even separated into at least 2-3 separate DLC per faction. So who knows, maybe there's a subtle hint for the future in the name. Grand Pacific Campaign anyone? :)
Did PC1's Afrika Korps campaign have it too? I remember it from OOB. Anyway, if it's doable, what would be the reason not to do it? I am guessing it would be easier to implement than the entirely new allied AI system of SCW. And while I can see PC2 going to the Pacific at some point in time, I think the chances of seeing a separate Italian campaign are very slim indeed.

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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by Tassadar » Fri Aug 28, 2020 8:05 pm

Rhaeg wrote:
Fri Aug 28, 2020 7:52 pm
Did PC1's Afrika Korps campaign have it too? I remember it from OOB. Anyway, if it's doable, what would be the reason not to do it? I am guessing it would be easier to implement than the entirely new allied AI system of SCW. And while I can see PC2 going to the Pacific at some point in time, I think the chances of seeing a separate Italian campaign are very slim indeed.
One can dream and I'll for sure keep doing so. If Order of Battle managed to pull off Winter War, PzC 2 can live the dream one day, especially with an engine that will not require an upgrade to Panzer Corps 3 for many, many years. But I'm a hopeless case I guess, since I enjoy this new edition of the game to the point I will settle even for that Emu war. :)

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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by adiekmann » Fri Aug 28, 2020 9:02 pm

Rhaeg wrote:
Thu Aug 27, 2020 11:24 pm

If you want to make an "Axis Operations" campaign, I think the Axis should be presented well and not only the Germans. Not just because of the name "Axis Operations", but because you (the devs) seem to realise that adding new things to this decades old genre is a necessary breath of fresh air. Adding unknown scenarios (eg. Saar offensive) is extremely valuable, I think, but the main attraction of the great SCW was the addition of both unknown scenarios AND all these cool new (old) units we never or rarely get to see. Including nations (with their units) other than Germany into the rest of AO would be a major attraction, just as the inclusion of all those cool units in SCW was. So do not let the major attraction become a sideshow! If you go with the all German route and just throw the occasional Italian(/Romanian/Hungarian/none(RIP Finland)) auxiliary force in the mix we will be going for a "let's redo PC1 Grand Campaign in PC2" scenario. That is not the innovation I saw in SCW.

Let's not read too much into the title of "Axis Operations." I could be wrong, but I interrupt it simply as a different name to separate it from the Grand Campaign of PC. There is no evidence (unless you have insider information) to claim that it means DLCs for all, or focused on other Axis powers other than Germany. At least for the time being. The majority of players I think do prefer a Germancentric campaign. At least to start. I too will eventually love a good Soviet/British/American/etc. content, but the German one is still #1. And also remember, not all player/customers of this game participate in these (or other PC2) forums. These are all considerations that you know Slitherine have to contempate, even if we the consumers don't necessarily do.

The only way I see the Axis Operations become Axis Operations is by not only incorporating previously unknown, new scenarios, but also by putting some amount of focus on the inclusion of cool/new/lesser known/iconic troops other than the German troops. How to make this happen? I'm sure it's obvious that ignoring these completely as was done in AO 1939 with Finland is not the way to do this. Dumping the occasional Italian auxiliary units into a scenario as was done in the base PC2 campaign is not interesting at all and certainly not innovative either.

What needs to be done I think is to add core forces other than Germany's.

In a separate North Afirka DLC, this IS totally worth it. But again, I have no programming knowledge whatsoever and therefore have no idea how tall of an order this would be to implement. I think it is a stretch for other nations (e.g. Romania), but then again, if they figure out/develop the code to implement it for Africa, then why not for Romania or elsewhere? And I say this without being sold on it even being desired.

There are two main advantages to having multiple core forces under your control other than a German one, I think. Firstly and most importantly, it creates a bond: these are your units and you take them along with you through a very lengthy game, even if they will only show up once in a while. Auxiliary units are cannon fodder, I don't care about them. I do not care about units because they are German or not, German aux units are meaningless to me as well: if they go through the meat shredder, so be it. Shrug. Core force units are mine and losing even one means a serious defeat. Secondly, it makes sure these non-German forces are getting used. The base PC2 implementation of the North African conflict was really underwhelming IMO. Why should I waste any of my prestige on these temporarily available craps? And even if non-German forces would be available as part of your one single core force you would rather spend prestige to fill core slots with German panzers and planes than on any serious number of Italians (Romanians/Hungarian/...). Separate core forces for separate nations means you will use them, because they will have separate core slots to fill out and a separate prestige pool. So you will both use these units and care about them. If you can think of any other mechanic to achieve this, I am all ears.

Well explained and I totally agree!

"But this will be so expensive to implement, we have to think of our budget!". This system has already been done by Order of Battle and it did wonders for their African DLC: I used the Italians and took them with me and enjoyed them just as I did my German units! You had less core slots for your Italians compared to the German core, but you can balance that any way you see fit. But they were there: Italian planes, infantry, artillery, inferior tanks and I cared for them because they kept going with me from mission to mission (hint: Italians can also fight before the 1941-43 African campaign and they can appear in other theatres of war as well! Just like Germans!). And luckily, you can implement this to several degrees. You don't have to implement each and every Axis nation. Finland has already been thrown out and you don't have to do Croatia. But at the very least do Italy properly: it is one of the 3 proper Axis nations and I assume you are keeping Japan for something entirely different than AO. So let's take a look at Italy and perhaps Romania as an optional Axis nation core force?

Just because they did it in OoB doesn't mean anything for PC2. There are not the same game so I doubt one means it is easy, cheap, or fast to implement in PC2. So costs, development time, etc are considerations which are easy for us consumers to say, "Yeah do this!" without knowing how practical it is to actually put into the game. I agree that even copying infantry units from another country and slapping on a Finnish flag isn't that big of a deal, let's not confuse that with grand game mechanics changes.


A lot actually, and I'm no expert even. Here are only some general ideas from the top of my head (so some might not be good after all for whatever reason and some might be content for just 1 scenario and others for multiple. The point is: if you are looking for new and original scenarios, there's plenty for Italy that could be of Saar-level quality, me thinks):
  • The 1940 invasion of British Somaliland;
  • The 1940 invasion of France (1 scenario only maybe, but still);
  • The Italian invasion of Greece in 1940-1941 (possible interaction with the German invasion of Greece in 1941: if the player has completed Italian scenarios in Greece, the Italians (represented by your Italian core forces) will start out with more territory);
  • The attack on Egypt and retreat into Libya in 1940-1941;
  • Defending Ethiopia in 1941;
  • Fighting alongside the German Afrikakorps in 1941-43: this alone warrants implementing a separate Italian core, see what I said above, see Order of Battle. No more meaningless Italian sideshow;
  • Involvement on the Eastern Front from 1941 until Stalingrad, or beyond in an ahistorical scenario in which the Italians survive the Stalingrad debacle.
These ideas came to my mind too, but you do have timeline issues with some of these. Your Italian core couldn't be involved in all of them at the same time. Like being in two places at once.

I do not expect you to implement all of these theatres of war at all. I just want to point out that there is more than enough possible content to justify a separate Italian core force with unique unit models. So many options for one of the 3 core Axis countries in Axis Operations! It is worth it for the Afrikakorps scenarios alone, me thinks. Also, I am ignoring any naval scenarios here, because I am assuming you may want to rethink the implementation of naval units when you get to Pacific scenarios. If you want to do naval stuff in AO, there is even more content for Italy in the mediterranean!

Africa is the only place where this REALLY makes sense. Perhaps carrying over into Sicily (assuming some alternative history that involves your core army being successfully evacuated from N. Africa.

And now let's go crazy and see if we can think of some original content for a 3rd Axis nation that is not Germany or Italy (or Japan) and that could perhaps use its own core force: Romania. Are there any places you could use your Romanian core forces? A quick google search taught me the Romanians had their 3rd and 4th armies operating on the Eastern front. Let's simplify and merge these into 1 core force. These units could then play a role in:

Here I am less convinced. Maybe if you were doing the Southern section of the Front. But I don't think there were any Romanian troops in the central or northern portions of the front. I am not opposed to it, but it doesn't make AS MUCH sense as Italians in Africa does.

So many options for Romania and for me personally it would be entirely optional. But at least do right by Italy, please.

There! You just said it yourself!

these are the Axis Operations, not the re-implementation of the PC1 German Grand Campaign. It started out great with SCW, but multiple core forces (at least 1 for Italy) are needed to make the continuation meaningful.

Again, yes and no. I think it's a great way, and common sense way, to make an Africa DLC truely awesome and different from its predecessors. I would be willing to pay a premium for the exta development time and costs that it probably would entail to implement. How much more? I don't know. How much more work would it be to do? Those questions I do not have the answer to and maybe even the devs don't really know either until they tackled it head on.
My 2 cents.

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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by Snake97644 » Sat Aug 29, 2020 5:11 am

Some while ago in another thread I posted my support for an Italian Campaign. Realistically I think it would have to wait until the other major nations were completed, but as someone mentioned above once the "heavyweights" are done why not develop dlc for the minor combatants. I imagine the developers will be pumping out content for years before they begin work on a PC3. It would be great fun, and a challenge, to have a campaign that allows you to develop the Italians into a highly effective fighting force. It won't be for everyone, but if it done after the US, U.K., and USSR all have their lines done who can complain?

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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by Morrodar » Sun Aug 30, 2020 1:07 pm

Rhaeg wrote:
Thu Aug 27, 2020 11:24 pm
Disclaimer: I do not post a lot, but I made a long post today and that got me thinking and since I couldn't stop that thinking I now have another very long post. Do skip it if you don't like very long posts. Also bear in mind that as long-winded as it is, it is still just an opinion. I think I give arguments and try to make it a somewhat coherent piece, but please see it as a starting point for discussion. So if you have very different ideas about the continuation of AO, do drop them here.

Though the inclusion of 2 (optional) scenarios set in Finland without any Finnish troops and your trusty German core force instead was disappointing to me, it was only a small part of the AO 1939 DLC. While IMO the effort involved in creating those 2 scenarios would have been better spent adding more content to underrepresented Poland, I think the real scary thing here is the suggestion/perception/possible scenario/... that this may be the way of going forward with Axis Operations. Essentially I'm afraid this whole PC2 (European) Axis undertaking will end up being "German Operations" with (every now and then) a couple of Italian and Romanian units as auxiliary sideshows no one ever cares about.

AO started of so nicely with SCW and including all these cool Spanish scenarios and unit models and the allied AI system which was novel and great for that situation (some people's unhappiness with the implementation notwithstanding)! Let's go further into AO with SCW in mind, not the AO 1939 way of dealing with non-German forces... and let's not do it as the base PC2 campaign did either.

If you want to make an "Axis Operations" campaign, I think the Axis should be presented well and not only the Germans. Not just because of the name "Axis Operations", but because you (the devs) seem to realise that adding new things to this decades old genre is a necessary breath of fresh air. Adding unknown scenarios (eg. Saar offensive) is extremely valuable, I think, but the main attraction of the great SCW was the addition of both unknown scenarios AND all these cool new (old) units we never or rarely get to see. Including nations (with their units) other than Germany into the rest of AO would be a major attraction, just as the inclusion of all those cool units in SCW was. So do not let the major attraction become a sideshow! If you go with the all German route and just throw the occasional Italian(/Romanian/Hungarian/none(RIP Finland)) auxiliary force in the mix we will be going for a "let's redo PC1 Grand Campaign in PC2" scenario. That is not the innovation I saw in SCW.

The only way I see the Axis Operations become Axis Operations is by not only incorporating previously unknown, new scenarios, but also by putting some amount of focus on the inclusion of cool/new/lesser known/iconic troops other than the German troops. How to make this happen? I'm sure it's obvious that ignoring these completely as was done in AO 1939 with Finland is not the way to do this. Dumping the occasional Italian auxiliary units into a scenario as was done in the base PC2 campaign is not interesting at all and certainly not innovative either.

What needs to be done I think is to add core forces other than Germany's. You can go as far as you want with this. You could go all crazy and have Italian, Romanian, Finnish, Hungarian and Croatian core forces next to the German one. Well, the Finnish seems to be out of the equasion and I can live with that. But there are several degrees of doing that and Italy at least deserves its separate core force, assuming you will revisit North Africa at some point.

There are two main advantages to having multiple core forces under your control other than a German one, I think. Firstly and most importantly, it creates a bond: these are your units and you take them along with you through a very lengthy game, even if they will only show up once in a while. Auxiliary units are cannon fodder, I don't care about them. I do not care about units because they are German or not, German aux units are meaningless to me as well: if they go through the meat shredder, so be it. Shrug. Core force units are mine and losing even one means a serious defeat. Secondly, it makes sure these non-German forces are getting used. The base PC2 implementation of the North African conflict was really underwhelming IMO. Why should I waste any of my prestige on these temporarily available craps? And even if non-German forces would be available as part of your one single core force you would rather spend prestige to fill core slots with German panzers and planes than on any serious number of Italians (Romanians/Hungarian/...). Separate core forces for separate nations means you will use them, because they will have separate core slots to fill out and a separate prestige pool. So you will both use these units and care about them. If you can think of any other mechanic to achieve this, I am all ears.

"But this will be so expensive to implement, we have to think of our budget!". This system has already been done by Order of Battle and it did wonders for their African DLC: I used the Italians and took them with me and enjoyed them just as I did my German units! You had less core slots for your Italians compared to the German core, but you can balance that any way you see fit. But they were there: Italian planes, infantry, artillery, inferior tanks and I cared for them because they kept going with me from mission to mission (hint: Italians can also fight before the 1941-43 African campaign and they can appear in other theatres of war as well! Just like Germans!). And luckily, you can implement this to several degrees. You don't have to implement each and every Axis nation. Finland has already been thrown out and you don't have to do Croatia. But at the very least do Italy properly: it is one of the 3 proper Axis nations and I assume you are keeping Japan for something entirely different than AO. So let's take a look at Italy and perhaps Romania as an optional Axis nation core force?

As far as Italy goes, I don't think I have to spend any words on Italian units. Iconic (and less iconic) Italian units have been implemented before. Great! All we need is to put them into an Italian core force instead of an aux one and find some use for them. You can't go through all the trouble of creating a core force separate from your German one and then having it show up in only 3 or 4 scenarios. So what scenarios can we think of for our Italians?

A lot actually, and I'm no expert even. Here are only some general ideas from the top of my head (so some might not be good after all for whatever reason and some might be content for just 1 scenario and others for multiple. The point is: if you are looking for new and original scenarios, there's plenty for Italy that could be of Saar-level quality, me thinks):
  • The 1940 invasion of British Somaliland;
  • The 1940 invasion of France (1 scenario only maybe, but still);
  • The Italian invasion of Greece in 1940-1941 (possible interaction with the German invasion of Greece in 1941: if the player has completed Italian scenarios in Greece, the Italians (represented by your Italian core forces) will start out with more territory);
  • The attack on Egypt and retreat into Libya in 1940-1941;
  • Defending Ethiopia in 1941;
  • Fighting alongside the German Afrikakorps in 1941-43: this alone warrants implementing a separate Italian core, see what I said above, see Order of Battle. No more meaningless Italian sideshow;
  • Involvement on the Eastern Front from 1941 until Stalingrad, or beyond in an ahistorical scenario in which the Italians survive the Stalingrad debacle.
I do not expect you to implement all of these theatres of war at all. I just want to point out that there is more than enough possible content to justify a separate Italian core force with unique unit models. So many options for one of the 3 core Axis countries in Axis Operations! It is worth it for the Afrikakorps scenarios alone, me thinks. Also, I am ignoring any naval scenarios here, because I am assuming you may want to rethink the implementation of naval units when you get to Pacific scenarios. If you want to do naval stuff in AO, there is even more content for Italy in the mediterranean!

And now let's go crazy and see if we can think of some original content for a 3rd Axis nation that is not Germany or Italy (or Japan) and that could perhaps use its own core force: Romania. Are there any places you could use your Romanian core forces? A quick google search taught me the Romanians had their 3rd and 4th armies operating on the Eastern front. Let's simplify and merge these into 1 core force. These units could then play a role in:
  • The siege of Odessa;
  • Operation München (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operation_M%C3%BCnchen);
  • Sevastopol;
  • Any other Ukrainian 1941-1942 scenarios. I'll forgive you if Romanians did not happen to be present for that specific scenario: that's not the level of detail I find interesting. I would accept them in any Army Group South 1941-Stalingrad scenario;
  • Stalingrad;
  • Ahistorical post Stalingrad scenarios if your Romanian core survives.
You could easily get the same amount of scenarios as SCW, making creating unique Romanian models worth the time and effort. Some suggestions for unique Romanian unit models:
  • Unique Romanian infantry (including mounted);
  • R-2 light tanks = Panzer 35(t) (hey, you already have these models! W00t!);
  • TACAM R-2;
  • IAR fighter and bomber units (Romania had its own planes and they weren't all that bad even);
  • Take your pick from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_R ... rld_War_II
So many options for Romania and for me personally it would be entirely optional. But at least do right by Italy, please. And also: I loved the allied AI mechanic in SCW (unlike some), but it would make no sense at all for units answering to German command in Africa or USSR. And I also understand that devs are likely very far already with 1940 AO DLC, so any suggestions for 1940 content might not be practical at all. But that takes nothing away from the core of my argument:

these are the Axis Operations, not the re-implementation of the PC1 German Grand Campaign. It started out great with SCW, but multiple core forces (at least 1 for Italy) are needed to make the continuation meaningful.

My 2 cents.
This is a great idea. Different army compositions, scenarios, little known conflicts and battles. Would be interesting to have a Romanian or ahistorical Italian campaign. An idea for the future.

Schneides42
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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by Schneides42 » Sun Aug 30, 2020 11:36 pm

I like lots of these options, but is this not what mods are for? I think we need to keep the DLCs to the main protagonists.

Kerensky
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Re: How to go forward with Axis (not: German) Operations and the need for multiple cores - some hopes for the future

Post by Kerensky » Mon Aug 31, 2020 12:40 am

Schneides42 wrote:
Sun Aug 30, 2020 11:36 pm
I like lots of these options, but is this not what mods are for? I think we need to keep the DLCs to the main protagonists.
There is a gigantic 'controversial 1939 tree' that shows there are definitely people of that mindset. More than a little fuss thrown up over heavy focus on non-traditionally covered battles.
But at least that was still German player CORE content, which is absolutely the #1 reason people want to play a long campaign: because they care about their personalized army.

I can imagine the outcry would be much, much worse were that not the case... :shock:

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