Memoir ‘44 Online – Beta Report
It has now been a week since I received orders to take post and prepare for the invasion. I had been out of training for some time, but like riding a bike, it all comes back as soon as you get on.
I mounted my Tiger but the engine wouldn’t start (java problems on my mac). I grabbed the nearest halftrack (PC) and made my way to the front. It served well but still suffered some mechanical problems. Fortunately, the Tiger was fixed and I was back in full action!
7 days of battle behind me now and I will soon pull out of the line to rest and refit. Herein is my intel report of what actions were encountered and what trials we faced and what we hope the outcome is.
Jumping into the crew commander spot, I knew I would like this tank. The opticals are simply outstanding. It was much like the model I had trained on (the boardgame itself!) and much better than the opticals on the old PzIII (some of you may know this as Vassal).
The situation was always made clear and in the sequence we had all been taught. After planning the order is issued and units designated for action in a clear manner. Once all orders had been issued, units would move.
The opticals made it clear where they could go but it would take some know how to understand how far or where the unit could go and still battle (the Move is marked out in green but you need to understand the unit capability as that isn’t clearly shown. ie. Infantry moves one and battle or two and no battle, there is nothing to indicate where the unit could move and battle as opposed to just move…so be sharp out there!).
Battle is straightforward. Targets available are indicated along with the strength that it will be hit with (dice). From there it is just a matter of confirming the target and battle takes place.
Retreating units have clear indicators on where they can withdraw to. Quick march to that spot (double click the retreat hex) will get the unit there without disruption as opposed to dragging their feet (click and dragging the unit to the spot would at times cause a crash).
After a couple of missions against the simulator, I was ready to battle live opponents. This was at times met with frustration as it seemed as soon as I had the upper hand, I was recalled (crash). However, as the situation improved, the ability to stay in the fight stabilized.
I still need a crew that understands how to effectively Ambush however. While most of the men under my command are relatively new they seem to think they know how best to Ambush. “Hans!” I yell, “not there! Here!” But they disobey. A couple of them will be up for charges once this is over. Some however have reacted accordingly and have proved decisive on a couple of engagements.
The action this past week however has been fast and furious. Fortunes of war have been fickle and the enemy has been strong but we will continue in this fight and drive the allies back into the water. I am reminded of the thrills encountered in the earlier battles back when we were training. There are many fights to come in the days ahead.
(In addition to the Grumbling Bear report, I found the Beta experience to be a blast. Sure there are some minor frustrations but that comes in ‘testing’ doesn’t it? While the game currently only features the base game scenarios, I look forward to the potential this system offers and look forward to playing all of my Memoir ‘44 friends who I have met online!)