Is so far getting a very warm reception:
– 25+ New towns
– Differentiated Ground Brigades
– New movement rules
– The usual assortment of fixes and stuff
So far, the reception and enthusiasm has been stunningly positive.
– New towns
Doc has added a huge number of new towns including Nijmegen (the Dutch treat ‘ij’ like a ‘y’ so think of it as Nymegen instead of “Nidgmegen”). The layouts are a little different than we’re used to because Doc was working with Granik’s new buildings, creating a much nicer infantry feel. He also made use of the increased poly/object budgets making bigger and more complex towns.
– Differentiated Brigades
From my perspective, this isn’t something I added; you already had differentiated Air Brigades with separate bomber and fighter brigades, and the bomber divisions had CAS divisions. Players are often amused I know nothing about the makeup of individual brigades or units – that’s because I took several steps back while designing the TOE system and made the system abstract enough not to require that knowledge.
Differentiated ground brigades means there’s more armor now where there is armor – so bigger armored engagements. But there are less brigades with it – which means more infantry fighting.
The first fights were around the new towns, particularly Grave, Hatert, Lent and Nijmegen. Lots of bridge and riverine action, but some really huge armor clashes between the armored brigades.
Ordinarily, that would mean infantry play consisted of trying to get out from under a tank – but with the differentiated brigades, it has so far played out very differently. There’s plenty of armor for the tankers but now there is space for infantry combat without having to pootle off to the Zeelands.
The positive feedback to this was really awesome. I joined Latham and Topd for some multicrew fun (thanks to Xiper for gunning for me!) and we had a absolute blast. Latham was so excited he was almost giggly :)
In the longer term, though, DiffBdes are going to take players some getting used to. I don’t doubt there’s going to be some quibbling over where so-and-so wants the armor and which squad wants to use it. Hey, there’s plenty of it, and the Division HQ spawn lists have had their infantry forces decimated to try and support armor play, but it means armor isn’t going to be all-pervasive along the frontline. That means armor guys will probably be doing a bit more driving than in the last year or two.
My personal thinking is this will create a little more opportunity for a restoration of some of the old interdiction and out-of-town combat that we used to see so much of.