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Unconditional Surrender! World War 2 in Europe» Forums » Rules

Subject: Finland ground units no combat DRM? rss

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Ara Bulbulian
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I'm looking for a typo or errata on the Finnish ground units not receiving a modifier for ground combat (5.1). It's unimaginable to me that they would be given no DRM bonus thus making them equal to soviet units. If this is really the case, I'm extremely surprised, somewhat disappointing, and feel it's insulting to the Finnish army of 1939-44. I've read over 50 books by some of the top authors in the business on the German war in the east and the Finnish Winter War (39-40). No where in my readings do I remember any clear examples of the Soviet army employed against the Finnish army proving themselves in the same league. Even with more material in tanks, artillery, and planes the Soviets still proved themselves inept. Later in both the Winter War and 41 German invasion by sheer numbers and a lack of resources on the Finnish side , were the Soviets able to finally start pushing the Finnish units back. The Soviet army was a mess in 39-42 and most people are still eating up Stalin's propaganda and don't realize the majority of documents written on the Soviet side have very little truth to them. I can help with books if people ask, but an east front must read is Deathride Hitler vs Stalin by John Mosier. I guarantee you will be enlightened.

I do understand the developer Sal has always said people are open to use whatever house rules they feel are necessary. So I very much doubt that I'll play another game of USC without a house rule giving the Finnish units at least +1 DRM in ground combat. I'll have to check the rules again to see how the Finnish units are affected during the first Soviet winter.

Cheers,
AB
 
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James Lautermilch
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If your basing your complaint on the books by John Mosier you'll get no sympathy from me. He's a former teacher of film and television masquerading as a military historian. His books have been roundly criticized for using tertiary sources, poor methodology, inaccurate and out of context quotes and an almost narcissistic belief in his own brilliance, while routinely disparaging other highly regarded historians who have actually dared to critique his work. While the Finnish army certainly gave as good account of themselves as could be expected under difficult conditions giving them a plus drm modifier in the context of the game mechanics makes no sense. If it's that important to you make it a house rule when you play.
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Mark Humphries
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Mosier a must read? shake
 
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Mark Dey
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Finnish troops are equal to Soviet troops in ground combat. They both have a +0 DRM.
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James
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Plus a Soviet unit will have a hard time attacking in Finland. Terrain is entirely rough.
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Ara Bulbulian
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jamesl59 wrote:
If your basing your complaint on the books by John Mosier you'll get no sympathy from me. He's a former teacher of film and television masquerading as a military historian. His books have been roundly criticized for using tertiary sources, poor methodology, inaccurate and out of context quotes and an almost narcissistic belief in his own brilliance, while routinely disparaging other highly regarded historians who have actually dared to critique his work. While the Finnish army certainly gave as good account of themselves as could be expected under difficult conditions giving them a plus drm modifier in the context of the game mechanics makes no sense. If it's that important to you make it a house rule when you play.


I disagree with you on the topic of John Mosier, but I don't want to turn this post into a debate. I know the arguments against him. Truely believe them to be unfounded and mostly based on egos as I suspected many of his critics to published historians that have books and papers written decades ago. Now they can't handle the idea that their data and conclusions may be a bit off. I'm even excluding the well known 'Soviet sympathizer' historians.

I also complete disagree with your statement 'in the context of the game mechanics makes no sense' On the contrary all the evidence suggest that the Finnish ground units should have a DRM level above the Soviet units. At a squad, company, division, corp, army level the Finnish units outperformed their Soviet counterpart by a large degree. I have no clue as to how you can base your statement.

The game already accounts for the massive Soviet army scale, thus a Finnish army unit is not something smaller than a Russian Army on the game board. Here's some data for you. During the Winter War 39-40 the casualties (killed, MIA, wounded) were 66,400 for the Finland while the estimates for the Soviets are around 500,000. Even that might be low because the data was always recorded as much lower on the Soviet side. These people recording the data were not to thrilled about a possibly of being sent to the Gulags by Stalin. Keeping in mind the Soviets threw 3x-10x more planes, tanks, artillery, men against the Finns.

The Soviet army was decimated at a leadership level by Stalin's purges in the 30's and never really recovered until late in the war from this trauma. This is beyond well documented. IMO they should have a - DRM in at least 39 through 41.

Yes, house rules to save the day. I'm curious what peoples idea of the ground combat DRM represents if not troop quality, leadership, weapons, logistics, etc.
 
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Salvatore Vasta
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abulbulian wrote:
[q="jamesl59"]
The game already accounts for the massive Soviet army scale, thus a Finnish army unit is not something smaller than a Russian Army on the game board. Here's some data for you. During the Winter War 39-40 the casualties (killed, MIA, wounded) were 66,400 for the Finland while the estimates for the Soviets are around 500,000. Even that might be low because the data was always recorded as much lower on the Soviet side. These people recording the data were not to thrilled about a possibly of being sent to the Gulags by Stalin. Keeping in mind the Soviets threw 3x-10x more planes, tanks, artillery, men against the Finns.


If a player tries to apply this detail at USE's scale, mechanics, and counter density, USE will not live up to it as a simulation. That is not how USE models the war. It's about force projection and front line movement. The details are abstracted out.

So in my mind, if the Russians attack a Finnish unit and the Russians have a DRM of 0, -1, or -2 (because of bad terrain and maybe planes, tanks, and/or bad weather) and fails to cause the Finns to retreat, then the Russians suffered more casualties than the Finns, or the Finns launched a counterattack that surprised the Russians, or the Russians poorly timed their attacks and casualties were light on both sides. The details are what you make of them. What ultimately mattered in the strategic sense is the front line did not move enough to equal a full hex.


Quote:
The Soviet army was decimated at a leadership level by Stalin's purges in the 30's and never really recovered until late in the war from this trauma. This is beyond well documented. IMO they should have a - DRM in at least 39 through 41.


You are entitled to think that. Others feel the Russians deserve a +1 in winter. Others feel the Germans should have a decreasing nationality DRM depending on year of the war. They can feel that way also and even implement that if they wish.

However, what I ask players do before they judge the game a success or failure simulation wise (fun or not be a separate measure), is to play the game as is and take it as a whole rather than focus in strictly on a single campaign and certain troops.

Take Finland for example. First off the Winter War isn't even fought physically with counters. It is abstracted out with the Area Seized mechanic. But even if you did fight it out, the very bad terrain and very restricted lines of advance make it a very difficult campaign for the Russians. Add in bad weather and it becomes virtually impossible, especially with the Russian '39-41 army.

Quote:
Yes, house rules to save the day. I'm curious what peoples idea of the ground combat DRM represents if not troop quality, leadership, weapons, logistics, etc.


It can represent all of those things. The DRM, however, are not exclusive and need to be taken into account relative to each other. Without doing that you could have an explosion of DRM which could very well throw the balance off or just cause the same result in the end, but with a lot more lines to look at.

Sal
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