Unity of Command II - this time it's 3d

There’s a History Mode which lets you replay the whole battle you fought move by move. Very nice!

And I’ve figured out the Supply View of the map. So it make for better planning.

I played the first campaign scenario and the tutorials. Am I missing something or is the HQ tutorial promised in the 3rd scenario not there?

(Maybe I should RTFM).

My first thought is that the interface seems a bit fussier than the first UoC, but I’ve spent an embarrassing amount of time on it, and my usual tactic of ruthlessly breaking down infantry divisions for parts to keep the vanguard going doesn’t seem to be as easy to figure out how to do…

I’m not sure. I skipped the tutorials and went right in.

The HQ have all kinds of abilities. But they have a range and a command points.
The command points determine what you can do per turn.
In the starting scenario, Monty have 6 command points, while Patton only had 3 (I think).

Within the Radius of each HQ, you can get one of your units to perform special actions. Left click on the HQ, and then see the panel where actions are possible.
The one I use is “Emergency Supplies” that cost 3 command points, not only does it keep a unit resupplied as if it was connected to the supply line, it also restores suppressed levels, which is awesome!

Note that Each HQ comes with it’s own attached unit. So it can only perform those special actions on their attached units. So Monty cannot supply US units, and Patton cannot supply British units for instance.

You can “Load up” the HQ and move it. Note that you must keep the HQ within your supply lines. Else it’ll go into out of supplies status and wont be able to operate.

Prestige Points upgrade your HQ. I recommend saving up some Prestige, because when you capture Objective with units belonging to the HQ, you are offered Special Abilities in exchange for Prestige! I managed to upgrade Patton to 5 Command Points when I captured an Objective.

This is getting really fun. I replayed the 1st Scenario and manage to beat the Objectives (Easy Mode) under the time limits and got rewarded with a huge pool of Prestige.

In the first scenario, I opted to attach some units to my front line tanks. And managed to punch through at crucial places to cut their supplies. The HQ “Emergency Supplies” kept my advance aggressive. Still it’s Easy Mode… I expect Normal Difficulties to be harder =).

I also made a mistake about the Time Limits for the final objectives when I said that there are no turn limits for final objectives. They do exist, but they are generous. I completed the scenario in 7 turns, they gave 11 turns. So I think almost everyone will not be bothered by the turn limits.

Once you get used to the UI, I think it’s great! I’m let you guys know how the RPG elements of the HQ play out in the Campaign.

thanks! - Very useful.

I didn’t have problems with puzzle nature of the first game, but it felt like a game you can only enjoy once you’ve mastered it.

Like there’s no real easing into it. Tutorial (Crimea) had smaller scope, but once you get into a first mission of any campaign you have dozens of units and not very generous time limit. It seems to me that you’re supposed to play this first mission for hours till you memorize combat resolution table and all the rules of the game. And then you probably do every other mission on your first or second try. Meanwhile something like Panzer Core allows you to fool around a lot of time even if it, too, is often described as puzzle wargame.

I think that’s a problem with the first campaign - the Black Turn DLC starts off with some curbstompings that are a very good way to learn the dynamics of the game (playing as the German player, of course) while the Red Turn one has some good Soviet scenarios that allow for experimentation on.

Unity of Command is definitely at the operational scale, not tactical. Strategic Command is strategical modeled down to operational.

/OCD

Sounds great!

Yes, I was thinking if I had correctly demarcated the gameplay genres. You’re right. Would it be fair to say, UoC is sort of like Operational/Tactical?

You’re literally killing Juan right now.

Seriously though, I never made it past the first tutorial mission last week so I look forward to playing this now.

I cleared the first Theatre.

Was loads of fun with Easy mode. The Objectives are all can be captured without feeling that I’m solving a puzzle. The game play is a lot more “natural”, I felt like there are many ways possible that I could reach all the objectives in time.

The HQ turns out to be HUGE in how you can breach seemingly unbreakable positions. The special abilities like feign attacks and suppression as well as emergency supplies are crucial. It would appear that saving prestige to tech up the HQ’s are key to how the other Theaters may become.

The ability to create supply depots are also quite an innovation, so is the capability to capture the enemy’s depots, they basically serve to resupply your near by units as well for 1 turn, on the turn you captured it. You can also build supply depots and allocate points to them. This is crucial in the 3rd mission.

In the 3rd mission, you’re required to rebuild bridges so that your supply depots can use the roads. Without repairing the bridges, it’s impossible to move forward, let alone win.

I had to replay the 2nd mission once to achieve all objectives. But I am surprised that I did the 3rd mission with 1 retry also after figuring the bridge and depot mechanics.

So, I dont think constant replay is necessary to achieve progress like the 1st UoC.

Regarding the how the Campaign may branch, I’m still not sure. I’m at the Conference Screen after finishing the 1 Theater. I’ll report back when I have more to say.

I’m selecting potential upgrades for my US HQ. As you can see, I have bumped up my Command Points to 7, and I have improved the special abilities (indicated by the gold dots), an Emergency Supply only cost 2 points instead of 3. So are the other abilities. This means that I can resupply up to 3 out of supply units per turn. It’s extremely powerful.

To improve your HQ, you can do it at conference AND during the missions, make sure to seize objectives with the units attached to the HQ you want to improve, every objective seized when your HQ is in range offers a choice of abilities to improve on. Save some prestige for those that require prestige to buy, but the choices will contain at least 1 free of prestige costs.

Yeah - it’s not quite as boiled down as UoC I was, but I like the flexibility about attacks, particularly the suppressing fire, even at the slight cost of making it feel a bit more gamey than UoC’s abstractions did. Onto Sicily last night, and the landing mechanics seem pretty elegant though.

And the AI is pleasingly just as vicious as finding the gaps in your front line.

Am I blind or does the game enforce an iron man save style?

The scenario can be replayed. But moves you make within each scenario is final. (There’s a single move rollback of travel.)

Getting further. Looking good. Some of the scenarios required me to hold defences instead of just executing flanking. The usage of paratroops is also key to victory I feel. Disrupting enemy supplies allowed me to destroy a huge concentration of armour and mechanized forces I could not possibly take upfront. So it’s true to form of the original UoC, but with less fiddly and puzzley gameplay.

I found something interesting on the Strategic Map.

I paid the 50 prestige for the Rush for the Apennines thinking that I’ll not be able to do the Operation Overlord missions.

But paying for that Campaign Path allowed me to take on both set of missions!

Seems like it would be a strange game design decision to make you skip Overlord. Maybe the rush option us just a different mission chain?

True. But I was not sure if they built in some fantasy scenarios where you can strike at Germany from the south.