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Memoir '44» Forums » Strategy

Subject: When to abandon a sandbagged position rss

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Lorin Maletsky

Lawrence
Kansas
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I was playing Breakout at Klin last night (although the scenario doesn't really matter) and I noticed that I was very reluctant to withdraw from my dug in positions, and this may have caused my undoing.

Because these positions (and the advantages) are lost when you move and usually are not developed in-game(except for the Dig In card) I find that I hold them frequently for most of the game. So I started weighing the advantages/disadvantages to moving out and was curious about what other people do.

Usually the 1 die reduction is not that critical since in many scenarios the sandbags are on terrain with cover anyway (e.g. towns, forests). So the main advantage is the ability to ignore one flag. This seems pretty important, although this only comes up 1 in 6 times on a die. So what generally happens to me is that units in the sandbag are killed outright without moving. This can be good if you are trying to slow down an advance or hold a medal and there is no good place to retreat.

Reasons to move off: press an advantage or retreat when threatened or cut-off. Pressing an advantage might be obvious if it was close to the end of the game, but doing it midgame might cause that unit to scramble back for good position if the attack fails. Retreating off the hex is also a hard choice because finding better cover is unlikely, so I might move off it only if the unit was cut off from support and the enemy could concentrate a number of units on killing it.

What thinking do other people use when trying to decide to withdraw from a dug in position?

In Breakout at Klin, incidentally, the Russians have three infantry units behind sandbags in open terrain and close to the enemy (third row from German side I think) and at least two hexes away from other cover. My initial thought was that these units were in a great position to harass the enemy and back them up. Practically it was tough to support them with other units and the Germans were able to concentrate fire on them individually from multiple units and take them out systematically. When I play it again, I might consider pulling them back (and give up the cover) to be closer to the other units for support.
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Tim Earl
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Portage
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I'm pretty quick to abandon sandbagged positions, as they hardly ever seem to be in locations where I want to stick around anyway. Unless there is no other cover within 3 hexes, if I'm considering moving out of that position, the sandbags are not going to make me reconsider.
 
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Scott Wheelock
Canada
Woodstock
New Brunswick
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It's definitely situational. I will try like heck to stay in sandbags if they're in solitary town hexes; if I don't have the sandbags, a close assault can force a retreat, at which point they've got cover in the town, and you're in open ground.

If the sandbagged hex is peripheral to the action, though, the heck with them. Better to leave and get use out of those troops than be seduced into staying, and not contributing, just 'cause they'll disappear if you leave.

Slightly tangential to this, does anyone actually use the Dig In card? It seems like a totally wasted action to me. Sandbags vs. shooting? Lame.
 
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Matthew Cordeiro
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swheelock wrote:
Slightly tangential to this, does anyone actually use the Dig In card? It seems like a totally wasted action to me. Sandbags vs. shooting? Lame.

I'll use it if I need to protect some guys and I don't have anything better for that section. Or if I want the guys to stay put until I can bring in some reinforcements.
 
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Clexton27
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Yes, it appears to be a "lame" card. But in some scenarios it is quite advantageous to have it.
Especially as the first card played.

Other times you can fall back to covered terrain and then sandbag yourself in forcing the opponent to get in close and in range of your other units.
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dave
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Yeah those 2 infantry on the Russian left are pretty much toast--if the even survive the first round between the tank, infantry and artillery all posed to kill them with 2 dice each. I doubt the Russians come out ahead in this exchange. At least running back to Golyadia they might survive and they can protect the town from an easy German VP.

Sandbags in the open/hills are pretty much fodder for tanks as the tanks can roll 2 dice to attack while the return fire is only 1 die--a losing proposition for the sandbag guys. That's a situation that you should probably bail unless you have better prospects elsewhere on the map.

And yes, almost always Dig In really sucks cause you're giving up a chance to fire so on some level you're losing a card spot in your hand. However there are a couple of scenarios that Digging In works well as you can protect vulnerable troops so you can do your business elsewhere. The last couple of overlords that we've done this was the case.

 
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Gamov
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swheelock wrote:

Slightly tangential to this, does anyone actually use the Dig In card? It seems like a totally wasted action to me. Sandbags vs. shooting? Lame.


Oh man! We sandbagged the 4 infantry units in the center; up front in MOYLAND WOOD OVERLORD. It was crucial to our victory because it made the German advance so much more difficult!
 
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