Today we are happy to release the 4.01 updates for Panzer Battles.
Patches 4.01 are now available for all three released titles, as well as the Panzer Battles demo. The new purchases are full 4.01 builds. Full builds are also available on your store account page. It may be easier to download the new version and uninstall the existing one and replace it with version 4.01. We recommend this as the best approach for the demo. Download the full patch or build instead of placing another order and getting another key.
Update 4.01 includes the following for all titles:
- Fixed an issue where attacks could be launched with insufficient movement points.
- Fixed fog of war being revealed between rounds.
- Suppression of an error message when replaying a PBEM campaign in cp_start.
- Implemented new dynamic toolbars for the main program.
- Implemented Configuration > Speed of Action.
- A/I > Elimination of fast A/I processing. Replaced with Action Speed.
- Deployed View > Roaming Mode.
- Deployed Units > Arrivals > Place All. This mirrors the scenario of tank campaigns, where all incoming units can be placed en masse.
- Updated scenario reports.
There were other minor content changes in various titles, but many of the UI updates were included, as well as the new speed of action introduced in Tank Campaigns.
The Place All feature is particularly useful in a title like Normandy, while the Roaming mode simplifies larger settings.
Here are some screenshots of each title of the new toolbars that closely emulate tank campaigns. (all full size screenshots are clickable)
The last image here is from Battles of North Africa 1941. Rick Bancroft designed all the settings for the biggest battle featured in this title, Operation Crusader. Rick has continued to create more content and shares more below.
You can get all the updatesHere, or get complete new installers from yourSave account page..
Rommel's planned attack on Tobruk
When the British Army launched Operation Crusader to relieve Tobruk on November 18, 1941, the Axis powers were about to launch another well-planned and prepared attack on Tobruk Fortress. Fortunately for the garrison, Rommel's plan was delayed by attacks on his supply lines in the Mediterranean, so he postponed it from 21 November to 24 October. At the same time, the British High Command considered delaying the launch of the Crusader by a few days.
Did you know that in addition to the original 115 scenarios, including Tank Battles - North Africa, there are 2 new what-if scenarios covering this planned attack? They were added with the original release of WDS 4.0. One covers the attack on the fortress in 2 days, the second is longer and covers the attack together with the Axis covering forces and the British mobile forces that historically started the main attack on the Crusader, basically an army level battle during a period of 3+ days.
Rommel's initial attacks on Tobruk, shortly after the siege began, first concentrated on the central perimeter to the south, near the road to El Aden, followed by an attack on the south-west corner in late April. This second attack broke through about 3 miles of the perimeter. The garrison attempted to restore the perimeter during the summer fighting, but without complete success. The southwestern perimeter continued to be an area of high concern.
The November DAK attack plan was aimed at hitting the southeast corner of the fortress. Although, unlike in the southwest, the fortifications, anti-tank ditches, cables, and mines in this area had not yet been touched by major fighting, the terrain here was flatter, which was advantageous in the event of a surprise attack. The southwestern corner consisted of hills, wadis, and broken terrain. Furthermore, the garrison was concentrated in the southwest, with the potential for an element of surprise in an attack in that area.
Around the Tobruk perimeter, two divisions of the German Afrika Korps supporting artillery organized under the Kampfgruppe Boettcher and three Italian infantry divisions were used for the attack. The Axis covering forces consisted of the 21st Panzer Division, an additional Italian infantry division, and the 1st Panzer Division and 1st Motorized Division of the Corps d'Armata di Manovra.
Rommel's plan of attack consisted of:
- A targeted attack between bases R65 and R75 by the z.b.V. Afrika (in process of being renamed 90th Light Afrika Division, historically 26 November 1941).
- The initial attack forces of the z.b.V. The Afrika forces were in position to attack around 16 November 1941, although historically this has resulted in them being out of position when Crusader was launched.
- Artillery support from KG Boettcher was vital. In addition to the existing divisional artillery, this formation had another 90 guns. There were mainly 10.5 and 15.5 cm pieces, but also some 21 cm Morsers and a small number of 17 cm guns.
- The 3 Italian infantry divisions would launch diversionary attacks, particularly in the southwest, to pin down the garrison troops in their current positions.
- After the zbV Afrika infantry had cleared the first fortifications, the 15th Panzer Division was to attack through the gap to Kings Cross by the end of the first day.
- This push would deal with any advance by reserves to seal the advance, including substantial armored forces deployed as part of the garrison.
- The Department, for example, V. Africa and Balogna's Italian division would widen the advance and seize the defensive positions on either side of the advance to eliminate observation of the advance point for armored scouting.
- On the second day, the armored division would explore the port of Tobruk and along the coast to the west. This would eliminate any chance of the garrison escaping or re-forming lines with the sea to the rear. The other forces would clear the perimeter and destroy the garrison.
- The covering troops were to handle any relief efforts by the British 8ºAxis Command had no idea of the British attack plan on Tobruk, so covering troops were deployed. The border garrison of Italian and German forces was expected to greatly slow or halt an attack along the coastal zone, with mobile forces ready to move if threats arose.
- The Italian 1st Infantry Division, Pavia, was stationed very close to the fort, where it could be deployed to assist with raiding/mopping up operations or moved to protect the rear of the breach if necessary.
the british plan
The Australian 9th Division provided Tobruk's main garrison from the start of the siege and repulsed early attacks by the German Afrika Korps. However, it was succeeded by the British 70th Division and the Carpathian Brigade, along with a growing tank force organized under the 32nd Armored Brigade. A significant amount of artillery was also present, including even a small number of captured Italian guns. There were still a handful of Australians present.
These forces consisted of 4 infantry brigades plus an additional battalion of Australians and their supporting MG and AT units and other forces. There were around 130 tanks (versus around 175 in the 15th Pz). The artillery consisted of 90 guns, mainly the excellent 25 pdr.
The Tobruk garrison was strong and well organized, with strong defensive positions. However, the perimeter was large and it would take time to move the core reserves to the threatened areas. With open ground around the fort, reserves can also be attacked. There was a second line of defense in many areas, but not as strong as the original fortifications.
To deter an attack, fortifications would have to delay the initial attack and reserves would have to react quickly, while artillery would help limit penetration until counter-attacks could be launched.
The main point of attack was defended by the 2nd King's Royal Regiment. There were about 500 men and some AT guns/mortars defending the bases to attack. They can't stop a wire attack, but they can buy time for nearby infantry reserves and tanks to respond.
It is also understood that the British plan for Crusader calls for mobile forces to be able to move into their planned offensive the moment Rommel's attack begins, allowing them to intervene quickly. As a result, these forces will quickly attack to relieve the fortress. This included diverting the New Zealand division from the planned advance behind the Axis border fortifications to the south-east of the battlefield.
There are two scenarios that cover this hypothetical situation. They are:
- #411121_05hv: Attack on Tobruk in November (hypothetical). There are 68 turns and they only cover the attack on the fortress itself. The fort could hold out for 2 days, giving the auxiliaries time to reach the perimeter or XXX troops. divert the bodies that are on the way?
- #411121_06hv: Attack on Tobruk in November (hypothetical). There are 102 laps. Includes all powers listed above and on the jump table. Can Rommel get his men to take the fortress while he stops the 8th Army's attack from behind him?
A full 3-4 day crossover scenario is being worked on, with the eastern part not covering the German-Italian border fortifications and Bardia. It will include replacements and other new features. After completion, a full battle can be held, including the East, for those who love super monster battles.
Thanks Rick, new content is constantly being created here at WDS.
We hope you all enjoy the improvements made to the Panzer Battles series. We have plans for continuous improvement across all of our game series and will share more when possible.
Until the next post.