A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Discuss

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Andy2012
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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by Andy2012 » Sat May 26, 2018 8:53 pm

Alright, Alam Halfa Ridge is mine and the British are awkwardingly shuffling back into my POW camps.
(Thank God that never happend. The DAK was never provisioned for this. :shock: )
Medium diff, no losses, 28 turns, I think.

Once again, you are fighting two different battles. I split them up between the Italians and the Wehrmacht, but you dont have to do this.

I upgraded all my 88 AT to Stugs (necessary, I feel) and my Italians got 3 heavy arty. Also bought a heavy K18 long range arty for my Wehrmacht.

1. In the north, I deployed the Italians. This is a defensive battle at first, then you slowly push towards El Alamein.
2. At first, you dont get your full airforce. Deploy just fighters in the north - Italian Folgore hold the north, FW 190s fly to the south.
3. I put my 3 Bersaglieri in the north with one semovente AT to cover them and one AA behind it. 3 heavy arty support this funfest, also 2 Italian tanks and one light tank. Prepare for 2-4 turns of heavy fire and New Zealander's attack, then not that much. Begin to slow push towards El Alamein after that. Prioritise arty fire, reinforce Italians as necessary. This is just a feint, so act accordingly.
4. In the south is where shit is gonna go down. Deploy your Wehrmacht here: Prepare for no mercy going for the jugular; this is Blitzkrieg. I put 3 PzIV F2 and 3 Stugs, one heavy Wehrmacht K18 arty, one paratrooper with halftrack, one inf with halftrack, 2 italian engineers with trucks and one German eng with trucks. While the north is heavy action during the first 4-6 turns, the south is where this battle will be decided. So pay attention. Aim your Wehrmacht with tanks, Stugs, paratroopers, engineers and so on towards Alam Halfa ridge. Dagger to the heart.
4. Your engineers slowly push through the minefields in the south (deploy them in the front first, then move to second line). Stugs follow close by, have them cover your infantry all the time.
5. South of your southern position (yes, double adnominal), the British have some light units waiting to pounce and hit your flank. Dont let them get you.
6. When gaining traction south, position one Stug and 2-3 inf around the road junction facing the massive British force in the middle. Counterattacks will come.
7. Around turn 7, you get more air CP and can finally deploy your Stukas in the south. Use them as mobile arty, push towards Alam Halfa ridge. You need them in the south, not the north.
8. Generally, have your Stugs cover all your tanks and all your infantry. The British will counterattack heavily and your Stugs cover your tanks as well as inf. Push slowly, but determinedly - with Stugs in the second row, you will win.
9. Cut off Alam Halfa Ridge from the north supply point. Hold the road junction in the middle between the road going north and going west. Deploy 2-3 inf with a Stug, have heavy arty and Stukas on their way back to the southern airfield on standby. This way, when the British realize you will cut them off, you will be prepared for their counterattack.
10. After seizing Alam Halfa Ridge, push north toward the supply primary. Beware of minefields (here, and in general).
11. Finally, push towards the final British supply hub. Knock out the bunker, everything else will fall.

TLDR is: Italians hold the north and slowly push towards El Alamein after 5-8 turns, Wehrmacht pushes for Alam Halfa ridge aggressively. Stug covers everything and wins the day (counterattacks bounce off). Stukas are mobile arty for the southern push. Aim for supply points, not the numerically superior British.

Anyways, this plays totally different from Panzercorps and the previous DLCs Blitzkrieg and Panzerkrieg. Aim for the supply points and you will win and triumph over a numerically superior force. 8)

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by Andy2012 » Sun May 27, 2018 11:03 am

Just a quick one, Desert Eagles aka Land Convoy. 12 turns, no losses medium diff.
This is rather a small, arcade mission.
Deploy two Stukas, rest fighters. Stukas focus on trucks, fighters hold of the Spitfires. You may need to race your fighters north in the last turn
and occasionally use them for ground attack when your Stukas are too slow. Ignore the trucks in the middle, focus on the roads.
But there's not much to discuss or review here. Pretty straightforward.
Cairo it is then.

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by CoolDTA » Sun May 27, 2018 12:34 pm

Alam el Halfa

The historical approach is the same advocated in the briefing. This is covered in Andy's superb post above. However, if you want to do it the easy way, here's how: attack in the north and only in the north. You have to protect Tel el Eisa from the enemy attacks but at the same time this means you can use the same avenue to achieve your goals and the road towards Cairo is shorter and even paved.

In the south I only deployed a small holding force of some Italian infantry, Pz IIIJ, 75mm gun, recon and Lancia AT/AA. Everything else was deployed north. This means you can quite easily blow away everything standing in your way and at the same you are nicely covered from the enemy's feeble counter attacks. Advance a bit east of El Alamein (past the mines), turn south and take the huge supply source. After that the enemy units are pretty much powerless. Then encircle the primary in the east but leave at least one enemy unit there (unless you want to get the secret plans -reward). Now you can clean the map at your leisure. 8)

There will be some enemy probing in the south (Vickers tanks, recons, inf). The Lancia performed very well here. In the early turns it severely damaged two enemy fighters (I sent one Fw 190 to remove the remains). Then those light units attacked my recon (Sahariana) one after the other and were mauled by the supporting Lancia. No enemy returned and no further attacks were made.

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by GabeKnight » Sun May 27, 2018 2:41 pm

CoolDTA wrote:Alam el Halfa
The historical approach is the same advocated in the briefing.This is covered in Andy's superb post above. However, if you want to do it the easy way, here's how:
[...]
No enemy returned and no further attacks were made.
Thank you for this detailed description. That's EXACTLY what I did on the retry of this mission. :) Aaaagain with the good old "Forced Labor" spec.... :wink:

(Just don't think about what that "spec" meant in real life Nazi-Germany... :oops: :( )

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by CoolDTA » Sun May 27, 2018 3:28 pm

GabeKnight wrote:Thank you for this detailed description. That's EXACTLY what I did on the retry of this mission. :) Aaaagain with the good old "Forced Labor" spec.... :wink:
Thanks, Gabe. You sure squeeze out everything from that specialisation. :) I'm not going to take it any more for this run, but will buy it in the next one.
GabeKnight wrote:(Just don't think about what that "spec" meant in real life Nazi-Germany... :oops: :( )
True, but not so much with UK prisoners. For the Soviet POWs it definitely was hard forced labour. I guess we'll see Soviets having this spec, too, in the distant future when the Soviet DLC is published (not so distant I hope).

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by CoolDTA » Tue May 29, 2018 2:47 pm

Cairo and Race for Tunis

Played these and while playing OoB is always fun :) I feel they were very easy. In Cairo you do have one neat counter attack which can result in losing a unit or two but that's it. Race for Tunis is aptly named. There are even speed bumbs on the road! Wait, they were the Allied units. My bad. :twisted:

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by 13obo » Tue May 29, 2018 2:55 pm

Agree that both of those missions were a bit easy for different reasons.

Cairo map is too small with half the map restricted for movement or bottle-necked. Eventually you have only one way forward with a fork for the secondary objective for bridge-head over the Nile which is also too small. That means you have only one way forward to go (and where the counterattack can come), so it's easy to scout and be vigilant.

Race for Tunis was just too small with few units that were mostly committing suicide in your tanks...

On a different note, Wargamer gave a pretty good review of OOB: Sandstorm:

https://www.wargamer.com/reviews/order- ... sandstorm/

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by CoolDTA » Tue May 29, 2018 3:30 pm

True, it is rather clear where the counter attack takes place, but it is so powerful that even an AT supported unit can be lost. Of course the AI pays the price and its tank force is in shambles after that foolhardy attack.

Thanks for the review-link! All players remember this part for sure: "On the second mission, Halfaya Pass, I watched British and Australian infantry units truck back and forth along one narrow road". :lol:

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by CoolDTA » Wed May 30, 2018 12:59 pm

Kasserine Pass

I think the easier objective is to take Thala and Sbiba which have less defenses than Tebessa. In this case the Americans probably make a counter attack so you have to thwart that, too, but it shouldn't be difficult. If you aim for Tebessa, there are quite a lot of US troops between you and the objective and this time the Brits will make a flank attack. Your troops are superior so you should prevail.

To prevent unexpected counter attacks I decided to take everything. After taking Kasserine one force advanced on the both sides of the river and another aimed to the supply source in the west so that the mountainous area would be left between them. The only sort of a counter attack was made by a couple of British units from Sbiba but it was expected and very weak causing only the destruction of the attackers. After eliminating the Americans (left Tebessa empty for now) I turned NE and a smaller force drove through the mountain pass towards Thala also. After taking it couple of units swung along the road to Sbiba from the north and the units guarding Sbeitla from the south. When the map was nice and clean I took the objectives. Unfortunately you only get one secondary because the other vanishes at the moment you enter the first town. :cry:

The enemy airforce is surprisingly weak here and you will have a lot of RPs to buy what you want. Buy at least those recon planes like 13obo suggested and you will be on top of the situation all the time.

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by 13obo » Wed May 30, 2018 1:23 pm

Well done on conquering the entire map! The recon planes certainly help a lot, right? Should get used to playing with at least 2 or maybe even 3 in the future, as the scenario becomes so predictable when you know all enemy dispositions. Worth taking them even if it means getting fewer 3x air CP planes.

Your conquest shows that the scenario is a bit on the easy side if the briefing warns you of the limitation of offensive capabilities of the DAK, yet you still managed a full conquest. I also thought I could go for both secondaries, but thought it's probably pointless and won't bring any benefits due to the explicit warning in the briefing, so stuck to Tebessa and defended from attacks from north.

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by CoolDTA » Wed May 30, 2018 1:36 pm

Well, you are playing at the highest level and I only at lvl 3 so it is not the same game. What you did was amazing. :) Yep, the recon planes did a nice job.

True, there's not much point in taking the whole map except for some exp. I just wanted to see if it is possible to achieve both secondaries and how the game chooses which one to apply. Now we know.

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by Andy2012 » Fri Jun 01, 2018 8:23 am

Just a service note, I am still continueing this walkthrough and the write-ups, I have just these real-life responsibilities and things interfering with my wargaming.

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by ShawnP » Fri Jun 01, 2018 12:45 pm

Andy2012 wrote:Just a service note, I am still continueing this walkthrough and the write-ups, I have just these real-life responsibilities and things interfering with my wargaming.
Real life 1st! :)

Appreciate your walkthroughs Andy. Yours and the others are really helping this noob. On Crusader around turn 5; those 2 88s around Sidi Rezegh are having a field day!

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by Andy2012 » Sat Jun 02, 2018 10:46 am

Alright, Cairo is mine and now I only have to deal with the Americans. Yikes.
Medium diff, 22 turns, no losses.
I upgraded my two Stugs to the latest version, but that was pretty much it. I avoid the early versions of the Tiger tank like the plague. Unreliable, expensive and not necessary for now.
Also, I am now saving up spec points. Not sure if the Italian tank programme is worth it.

(Bug notes: During the Sandstorm, some of the possible movement hexes flicker. Also, sometimes the arty range indicator is covered by water. Shader is still buggy.)

Anyways, while I dont think this is too easy, it is not a mission that requires anything outside OoB general playstyle or fancy deployment shenanigans.

1. I didnt change my core force much (as said above). Bring engineers, Alexandria is heavily mined. 2-3 should do.
2. Your Stugs should cover your assault forces all the time, tanks and infantry. If you keep your attack forces around them in a star shaped pattern, the heavy British tank counterattacks will just bounce off.
3. Attack Alexandria with infantry and arty, let your 3 Stukas focus on the south away from AA. Fighters fly ahead and clear the skies.
4. After taking Alexandria (and sinking the Cruiser easily), advance south with two pincers. One towards the chokepoint along the road, one towards Tanta.
5. Both forces will face a heavy counterattack, but if you cover them with Stugs and dont get cocky, the British will have no chance. Ideally, your arty covers them both. There is no AA around Tanta, so keep your Stukas there to help.
6. Dont forget to have some space behind your front forces so they can retreat when pressed hard. Those British tanks are suicidal.
7. Strangely, two Spitfires just loiter over Cairo. Bug?
8. After defeating both counterattacks, advance towards Cairo from front and rear over Tanta. Your forces from Tanta take out the arty on the far bank of the river.
9. Take Cairo, all done.

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by CoolDTA » Sat Jun 02, 2018 11:07 am

Good tips again - thanks for posting them, Andy! :)

It is not the end of Brits, they are still there... Imo the Italian tank programme is okay, because you do get something (unlike the advanced air in Burma Road). And I agree, not those unreliable tanks for me, either.
Andy2012 wrote: (Bug notes: During the Sandstorm, some of the possible movement hexes flicker.
I thought that was intended - it is a sandstorm after all. :lol: :oops:

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by Andy2012 » Sat Jun 02, 2018 4:15 pm

Alright, I have engaged the Americans (bloody yanks...), raced them for Tunis and battled them in Kasserine Pass.
Won both, no losses, medium diff. I'll cover both missions in this post.

Race for Tunis

This one is about deployment. If you dont get it right, you will struggle and fail. I had to restart twice but then it was rather straightforward.
1. The title suggests a race, but dont approach it like that. Dont deploy tanks at first.
2. Instead, deploy 1 Stuka, rest fighters in the north. Deploy two infantry, one Stug and one arty per starting point. Around turn 7, you get more CP so you can add 1 tank and one arty.
3. In turn 1, sink the supply ship in the north with your fighters and Stuka. Attack the landed infantry. In the south, push away the French and seize the first objective.
4. Obliterate the US fighters. For refueling, only use the airport near Tunis. Ignore the SAS and recon mostly, they cannot seize cities.
5. Now advance methodically, let your Stugs always cover your infantry. If you do this, you wont get cut off - this is not a race.
6. Push for the final objective, seize it. Took me 12 turns.
(Odd AI behavior, driving back and forth with trucks)

Kasserine Pass

22 turns, no losses. I made this too difficult for myself since I always assumed a heavy counterattack on my flanks from the north and south, which never came. But you still need to guard the pass and your supply lines once you have taken the first objective. You need at least 1-2 inf and one AT in the north as well as the south.
I bought the latest version of the FW 190, which makes an excellent fighter bomber. Also upgraded my Stugs to G variant. No Tigers, no panthers, but the nice new Italian tanks.

1. Taking Kasserine Pass is easy. Remember that tanks cant attack mountain hexes, bring infantry and Stukas.
2. I chose to push for the north east objective so I can cut off the Allies in the next mission. Somebody should post how a frontal assault works out.
3. Push along the paved road north. The river covers your right flank, French troops in the mountains are just an annoyance. Really focus your troops here; I was always prepared for heavy counterattacks on my flanks, but they never came.
4. The Americans have tons of equipment and are heavily dug in. They have fighters, bombers, tanks, AA, heavy arty and so on. But no exp for their units - which gives you an advantage. Let your tanks and infantry hug your Stugs, use Stukas and arty to soften them up and aim for the target city in the northwest. Ignore the other massive troop concentrations.
5. If you play as usual and always have your troops covered by AT in the second line, this should not be hard. Play this like Alam Halfa (aim for the supply points or in this case the target city and nothing else), this should work.

Alright, how did everybody else do? Anybody pick the frontal assault here and went straight north?

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by cutydt02 » Sun Jun 03, 2018 7:16 pm

I choose the 2 cities mission because its easier. We wont meet any counter attacks but some infantry and light vehicle at kasserin. So i just leave 3 inf and 1 italy tank to protect. Others units just run to the central city, very easy and nearly no wasted repair.
Some last scenarios’re boring and easy. Well i ended up with nearly 2000 rps of italy and 200 rps of german, i think i will buy more italy luxury things next time

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by Andy2012 » Mon Jun 04, 2018 11:48 am

Alright, almost forgot to post this one. Finished the set-up for cutting off the allied forces in Tunisia by connecting Bone and Thebessa.
Medium diff, lost one aux paratrooper (units with high exp dont retreat that well, I find...), 22 turns, I think. Core is fine.

I bought two good Italian tanks and they serve me well with that tank programme spec. Worthy investment.

This is pretty straightforward and if you play carefully and systematically, you should win easily.

1. Deploy for mobility and for fighter cover. FW 190 Fs are good fighters and can double as bombers, 2 Stukas, Italians all fighters.
2. Thebessa will always be harassed from the east. Leave 3 Italian inf, one semovente AT and a heavy arty here. Push the Americans back and hold the right flank at your starting point.
3. Stukas fly ahead. Tanks, Stugs, inf and paras in halftracks follow. Use the road, be quick.
4. Paras fly straight to the Bridge, land on the northern side. Ideally right in the supply point. Push the engineers off, reinforce, hold. Fighters provide air cover, hold back US fighters and bombers.
5. Your tank column blows its way towards your paras, hurry up. Stukas serve as mobile arty.
6. At each intersection of the road north towards Bone, you will be attacked by a US force trying to cut you off from the east. Leave 2-3 inf and a Stug behind to hold them off.
7. After reaching the bridge and your paras, attack north towards Bone. Keep an eye out for stragglers on your eastern flank, fly a recon patrol here or two.
8. Seize Bone, done.

Key is mobility (tanks, Stugs, mobile inf, Stukas) and holding the road intersections with a rear guard while pushing on. Apart from that, usual rules apply.
Final mission coming up...

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by WarHomer » Wed Jun 06, 2018 10:41 am

So I finally finished Sandstorm (hard to find the time with two toddlers) and here are my two cents.

As always I play on Field Marshall.

The first mission really gave me a challenge until i figured out the right strategy and that was the same for the one where you have to bypass alot of enemies in the middle and hold in the North (maybe I was a bit too tired for that one).

A few missions were too short and simple (convoy escort and desert strafing) and Cairo was outright easy (and therefore disappointing) and after mission 10 I had like 1800 RPs for Germany.

I loved the the Italien side and had loads of fun figuring out all the new Italian units and how best to composition my army.

All in all a very fun DLC, but as always IMO too short, which really dampens replayability, and which is quite a shame for such a highly anticipated and interesting theater.

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Re: A long beach. With trenches. Sandstorm - Review and Disc

Post by cutydt02 » Wed Jun 06, 2018 8:14 pm

I want to ask pro players how to clear sky at 5th diffcult ? They just wipe me out or even i can deal with them, its too late to use stuka ??

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