On March 23 Platoon_Michael and I decided to have a classic Battle of the Bulge grand campaign. 15 minute games with morale on, Michael playing as Germans. Neither of us had played CC4 in awhile, let alone made it any significant progress playing out the grand campaign in the last few years. Starting the game, the force strength bar was in his favor but I like an underdog fight and I knew most battles I would be fighting to survive. In fact, the very first battle I was disbanded by a German group with Panthers at Simmerath.
During the opening days of the campaign as Allies my hands were tied. I was fighting with many under strength battle groups without armour and very little anti-tank weapons. I was facing German groups that could field five Panther tanks turn after turn. My Southern flank was crushed. The German spy network was working overtime to completely screw my chances at countering his drive in the South. Turn after turn all my units were redirected which also resulting in other units getting stuck behind the front line. The spy network was so effective that Bastogne fell without a fight, I couldn't get any of my units in there for a defence, a massive victory for Michael. On December 19th, the spy network was no longer operating and I now I can attempt to clean up the mess.
One aspect of CC4 that was the bane of its existence was the locked forcepools. So many of us shunned it back in 1999 due to that, it was a huge change from The Russian Front. Now however, locked forcepools are something I can appreciate. Combine this aspect with a 15 minute timer and morale turned on you can easily get up to five games completed in one hour! The extremely small maps also help keep up the fast paced nature of CC4. There are very little options for defence. The maps are only a couple hundred meters wide, you are literally dropped into a cage and must fight for your survival. The fights a very lethal and the stakes are multiplied by having morale on.
Relearning the units combat qualities was also costly. The German Infantry Gun carries a ton ammo, is mobile and has a very high rate of fire. I found this out at Wardin on December 18th. Watch this video at the 3:45 mark. I was not prepared to counter that unit and it steamrolled my infantry. During the next battle on December 19th, all my infantry teams focused on it with small arms fire and the gun went down very slowly, only after the outcome of the battle was decided. German flamethrower teams are another unit that is hard to face. These teams also have a high rate of fire but less killing per shot that we are used to in CC5. You cannot engage these units in house to house combat. They are not easily suppressed either.
American antitank weapons like the 57mm antitank gun and bazooka are effect vs all armour and vehicles. However, head on vs Panthers both Allied units will lose. Side and rear shots are required for more than damaging hits. If you are cut off from supply, the 57mm guns will expend all ammo very quickly.The size of the maps limit your ability to get beside or behind a Panther. Sherman 76mms and M10s will also have a tough time head on vs the Panther. Multiple tanks vs one Panther is effective in the sense that they will knock out the combat effectiveness of the Panther, but not destroy the tank. Over and over again I see Michael pulling a Panther back due to losing its main gun or too many crew members.
I am recording each battle of the GC, this will be the first and only complete grand campaign uploaded to Youtube to date. We are 62 battles in with about nine hours of total play time. We are currently on December 20th Evening about to make strategic moves. We have both had our days of defeats and days of victory. One thing the Allies do not have are any heros with huge kill counts. Attrition is extremely high and most of my men do not survive more than two or three battles.
New map plugins have been made to make installing then simpler. Ernie_M's
custom made and enlarged maps have been put into 2 separate plugins, also TT's
repainted maps have also been converted to plugin. All of these plugins can
be used with reg CC4 and VetBoB. To install all plugins listed below download and install
Manager, unzip each of the files below to the C:/Program Files/Config Manager/Plugins
folder, open config manager and click install. Do not install these plugins
over each other.
pvt_Grunt has created a VetBoB1.13 submod. He's used many different maps
which include ones made by Ernie_M, maps resized and repainted from CCM and
maps from other sources. Some new graphics files have been added also. You can
download this mod in one zip file. Within the zip is the plugin file with gets
extracted to C:/Program Files/Config Manager/Plugins & the map pack which gets
extracted to C:/Program Files/Close Combat IV/Maps. Once done, install the plugin
with Config Manager.
Finally, a number of CC4 submod that required manual installation have been
converted to plugin, they are;
Company Cmdr Mod - Designed to improve infantry survivability and reduce
the number of tanks in all armored BGs. Ersatz
- Removes all German heavy armour and adds more inf. teams and extended FPs. Ice
Tanks - Alters the tanks graphics to those of True Green. Team
Names - This mod will alter the team names to better reflect historical
reality. US Voices - Voices have been replaced with those German and Allied voices of CC1 & CC2.
If you have Close Combat 4 installed to a harddrive other than C, you will need
to do some registry editing to use the plugins. Follow this
guide on how to do this. Visit our CC4
Forum if you have any problems.
Ernie_M has made another 2 maps for CC4. They have already been incorperated into the custom maps plugin. The maps are Lutrebois & Villers la Bonne Eau
In August of 2004, Zappi, Homba, Bambam887, RedScorpion and MOOXE all pitched
in to create this Close Combat site. I would to thank all the people who have visited
and found this site to thier liking. I hope you had time to check out some
of the great Close Combat mods and our forums. I'd also like to thank
all the members of our volunteer staff that have helped over
the years, and all our users that contributed to this site!