The 8-3-8 Pionier Squad

Vinnie

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I like the 8-3-8. Sure it may be unrepresentitive but I don't really care. Like the 6-6-6 it adds flavour to the game. I like the Soviets chargeing all over the place. The Commowealth cool under fire. The Italians breaking and disrupting left right and centre. I know this is all fairly unrealistic but frankly, I don't care.
 

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The 8-3-8 is just fine for whenever it's required. I think it can be valid in 1939. It's another tool in the designer's kit to recreate a specific situation.
At last. Someone who gets it besides Pete. Design for effect, as with the rest of the ASL game. I would ask Scott's question differently: has the drive for "historical accuracy" driven all the fun from the game? -- jim
 

Vinnie

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At last. Someone who gets it besides Pete. Design for effect, as with the rest of the ASL game. I would ask Scott's question differently: has the drive for "historical accuracy" driven all the fun from the game? -- jim
This is a very valid question
 

swellington

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the fun still exists but for a non historian gamer it becomes even more overwhelming than it already is, this game is complex we must admit. And for non gamer historians it makes this game more interesting to them, many a time in the 80's while playing ASL at the university campus i was approached by students and scholars all non gamers interested in this weird board game we were all playing, and when some of them found out it had historical details, they became even more interested if not becoming gamers themselves( this was the time before video game consoles).
But a line must be drawn by those not interested in the historical details as to how much of it they will tolerate or purchase/play. Because for people not interested in soo much historical detail i think some fun is taken out of the game, but only if they let it be taken out.
 
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M.Koch

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OK. So how were they organized and what kind of equipment did they have.
Btw, German assault engineers are all over the place. Pretty much every single division has at least a battalion worth of assault engineers. That probably make the 8-3-8 the most underrepresented squad type in ASL. :)
As far as i know, each battalion was ordered to form a "Sturmkompanie", armed with smg/ explosives more than the average soldier, to lead the attacks and breaktrough the enemy lines.
For strongpoints etc ( so every corner in Stalingrad :rolleyes:) the "Sturmpionier" units were used, experts in attacking fortified locations ( the 838 for that case, might have more inherent explosives ).

But, i hve doubts that every Division had an own "Sturmpionier"Battailon. "Normal" pioneers, which could form some "Sturm" squads or platoons with men trained in special weapons ( FTs, DCs etc) use, ok! But whole battailons of these highly trained specialists...i don´t think so.

MK
 

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At last. Someone who gets it besides Pete. Design for effect, as with the rest of the ASL game. I would ask Scott's question differently: has the drive for "historical accuracy" driven all the fun from the game? -- jim
A good point. As we all know, an ASL scenario cannot be fun unless it has an 8-3-8 squad in it.
 

Gunner Scott

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At last. Someone who gets it besides Pete. Design for effect, as with the rest of the ASL game. I would ask Scott's question differently: has the drive for "historical accuracy" driven all the fun from the game? -- jim
Well, that was basically the question being asked. Design for effect? What is that supposed to mean? I always thought it was to design for fun but I guess there are other ways of designing scenarios huh?

To aspiring scenario designers out there in candyland, design for fun guys and your scenario will be a memorable action indeed.

Pitman writes
<<A good point. As we all know, an ASL scenario cannot be fun unless it has an 8-3-8 squad in it.>>

Gee, were you not the one who cried everytime someone cracked a joke or railroaded your thread with smart ass humour? Kettle calling black.............


Scott
 

Sparafucil3

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A good point. As we all know, an ASL scenario cannot be fun unless it has an 8-3-8 squad in it.
Thankfully, I have decided to abdicate all my opinions to you since your omniscience seems to know no bounds. As we all know, all opinions emanate from your thoughts. Thanks for setting me straight. -- jim
 

Darrell Andersen

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"opinionless"

Technically, this is a misnomer. I actually have them, I just don't know if my opinions have any worth until I recieve a writ from on high establishing the validity of said opinion.

"clueless"...that hasn't changed...been clueless for a long time. :)
 

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As far as i know, each battalion was ordered to form a "Sturmkompanie", armed with smg/ explosives more than the average soldier, to lead the attacks and breaktrough the enemy lines.
For strongpoints etc ( so every corner in Stalingrad :rolleyes:) the "Sturmpionier" units were used, experts in attacking fortified locations ( the 838 for that case, might have more inherent explosives ).

But, i hve doubts that every Division had an own "Sturmpionier"Battailon. "Normal" pioneers, which could form some "Sturm" squads or platoons with men trained in special weapons ( FTs, DCs etc) use, ok! But whole battailons of these highly trained specialists...i don´t think so.

MK
OK, so maybe the "Sturm" title was a honorary name for the Stosstrupps formed from the various infantry and assault engineer outfits?

Pretty much all divisions (Panzer, Panzergrenadier, Infantry, Jäger, Fallschirmjäger, Gebirgsjäger etc) had an organic Pionierbataillon. Surely, you would need no more than 2 minutes with Google to verify that. According to Das Handbuch der deutschen Infanterie these battalions had three companies (w/ one being motorized). Each company had three platoons. Each platoon was 52-man strong divided into squads with 1 NCO and 14 men each. The platoon had 9 LMGs, 3 FTs and 3 ATRs. This corresponds with KStN 714, although the FTs doesn't show, because they were carried (but not used, obviously) by some supply column, I believe. According to the same source, the FTs were used with Pionier- or Infanterie-Stosstrupps to reduce bunkers, strong points and in house-to-house fighting. A FT team consisted of a NCO, a FT operator and a supporting rifle man.

Later in the war, these formations were reduced somewhat in size to 47 men, I believe. In addition, some Pionier battalions carried 2xLMG per squad.

The battalion as a whole carried 351 kg explosive (mostly TNT) packed in various forms, including the 3-kg Geballte Ladung (read: DC). In addition, they also carried 936 smoke hand grenades (can you say Smoke exponent?).

So the average assault engineers certainly packed some punch, including 81mm MTRs, LMGs, DCs and FTs.

Maybe you thought that the organic Pionier battalions primarily served as construction troops (Bautruppen)? It's easily to be confused, since the same term was used for those kind of troops as well (although in late-war designations made a difference between these to different troop types).

And if you aren't impressed by the above, I can mention that Pionier battalion had their own music band, with 1 Musikmeister and 27 Musikern. I'm not sure how this translates into ASL, but nevertheless!
 

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And if you aren't impressed by the above, I can mention that Pionier battalion had their own music band, with 1 Musikmeister and 27 Musikern. I'm not sure how this translates into ASL, but nevertheless!
Well, it's obvious that their only opponent could be the Bagpipe "Piper" counter...battle of the bands! :headbang::vegguitar::bandrum::violin:

Semper Fi!
Scott
 

kjd12302

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And if you aren't impressed by the above, I can mention that Pionier battalion had their own music band, with 1 Musikmeister and 27 Musikern. I'm not sure how this translates into ASL, but nevertheless!
Oooh, baby. Takes me back to "Piper's Lament"...:clown:

Let's see now... a 10-3 Musikmeister with '0-4-9' (? from "PL") Heroic abilities, and two Elite Musikern MMCs at 0-3-10 with a Jamming exponent of 5. Rock On-- 'oom-pah-pah, oom-pah-pah' :clap::hail::headbang::toast::bandrum: !!!

--Ken
 

M.Koch

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OK, so maybe the "Sturm" title was a honorary name for the Stosstrupps formed from the various infantry and assault engineer outfits?

Pretty much all divisions (Panzer, Panzergrenadier, Infantry, Jäger, Fallschirmjäger, Gebirgsjäger etc) had an organic Pionierbataillon. Surely, you would need no more than 2 minutes with Google to verify that. According to Das Handbuch der deutschen Infanterie these battalions had three companies (w/ one being motorized). Each company had three platoons. Each platoon was 52-man strong divided into squads with 1 NCO and 14 men each. The platoon had 9 LMGs, 3 FTs and 3 ATRs. This corresponds with KStN 714, although the FTs doesn't show, because they were carried (but not used, obviously) by some supply column, I believe. According to the same source, the FTs were used with Pionier- or Infanterie-Stosstrupps to reduce bunkers, strong points and in house-to-house fighting. A FT team consisted of a NCO, a FT operator and a supporting rifle man.

Later in the war, these formations were reduced somewhat in size to 47 men, I believe. In addition, some Pionier battalions carried 2xLMG per squad.

The battalion as a whole carried 351 kg explosive (mostly TNT) packed in various forms, including the 3-kg Geballte Ladung (read: DC). In addition, they also carried 936 smoke hand grenades (can you say Smoke exponent?).

So the average assault engineers certainly packed some punch, including 81mm MTRs, LMGs, DCs and FTs.

Maybe you thought that the organic Pionier battalions primarily served as construction troops (Bautruppen)? It's easily to be confused, since the same term was used for those kind of troops as well (although in late-war designations made a difference between these to different troop types).

And if you aren't impressed by the above, I can mention that Pionier battalion had their own music band, with 1 Musikmeister and 27 Musikern. I'm not sure how this translates into ASL, but nevertheless!
OK, so maybe the "Sturm" title was a honorary name for the Stosstrupps formed from the various infantry and assault engineer outfits?


I think so

Pretty much all divisions (Panzer, Panzergrenadier, Infantry, Jäger, Fallschirmjäger, Gebirgsjäger etc) had an organic Pionierbataillon. Surely, you would need no more than 2 minutes with Google to verify that. According to Das Handbuch der deutschen Infanterie these battalions had three companies (w/ one being motorized). Each company had three platoons. Each platoon was 52-man strong divided into squads with 1 NCO and 14 men each. The platoon had 9 LMGs, 3 FTs and 3 ATRs. This corresponds with KStN 714, although the FTs doesn't show, because they were carried (but not used, obviously) by some supply column, I believe. According to the same source, the FTs were used with Pionier- or Infanterie-Stosstrupps to reduce bunkers, strong points and in house-to-house fighting. A FT team consisted of a NCO, a FT operator and a supporting rifle man.

Ok, but that didn´t made the automatically to "Sturmpioniere". For sure you know that there were independent "Sturmpionier" Battailons...

And if you aren't impressed by the above, I can mention that Pionier battalion had their own music band, with 1 Musikmeister and 27 Musikern. I'm not sure how this translates into ASL, but nevertheless![/

Oh, i´m very impressed...The title "Musikmeister" cries out for an own SMC and at least 5 sides of additional rules
 

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My point was not to make the organic Pionier battalions Sturmpionier in the eyes of Mr Koch. :) (Even though I do think that would be an appropriate name for them.) My point was that you as a scenario designer might well represent troops from the Pionier battalions as 8-3-8s equipped with DCs and FTs.
 

M.Koch

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My point was not to make the organic Pionier battalions Sturmpionier in the eyes of Mr Koch. :) (Even though I do think that would be an appropriate name for them.) My point was that you as a scenario designer might well represent troops from the Pionier battalions as 8-3-8s equipped with DCs and FTs.
No problem with that, Mattias ;)...it´s a game and if it serves the situation well i will use 838s as Pioniere and/or Sturmpioniere...or 548s/ 468s if it´s the right time frame/ situation.
 

jwb3

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At last. Someone who gets it besides Pete. Design for effect, as with the rest of the ASL game. I would ask Scott's question differently: has the drive for "historical accuracy" driven all the fun from the game? -- jim
I think it's much too late to take "design for effect" SL and try to turn it into a game where the squads are meaningful representations of the historic TO&Es. While I am a big fan of historical accuracy, I must agree with Jim here; original SL's fast and loose approach to history was in many ways more fun.

Sure, the American 6-6-6 and the German 8-3-8 and all the other units were Hollywood stereotypes, but there's a certain joy in playing with the stereotypes. Gusto is good.


As an example of how pointless it is to try to match up the ASL counters with the real-world TO&Es, here's an example taken straight from the Combat Mission scenario I'm currently playing: an attack by German Volksgrenadiers on a US rifle battalion during the Battle of the Bulge.

All the US squads are the standard 12-man rifle squad, containing (in the game) a pair of BAR gunners, a sergeant with an SMG, and 9 riflemen. In other words, your typical US 6-6-6 squad.

But the German side is far more complicated. Each VG company (according to CM anyway) contains three platoons:
- Two platoons each contain a pair of "SMG Squads", which are 8-man squads armed solely with SMGs, and a "Heavy SMG Squad", which is an 8-man squad armed with two LMGs and 6 SMGs.
- One platoon contains a trio of "Volksgrenadier Squads", which are 8-man squads armed with a LMG, 2 SMGs, an MP44, and 4 rifles.

What counter is supposed to be used for each of these squad types?

Should the SMG squads be represented by an 8-3-8? Don't make me laugh! The 8 firepower might be reasonable, but not out to 3 hexes. And more importantly, these guys are seeing their first action -- there's no way they rate an 8 morale. Similarly, every other possible squad type has something that is way out of whack.

And then there's the Heavy SMG Squad; it's even less like any of the given ASL squad types. I suppose you could try to represent it with a 6-8-7, if such a beastie existed in the system.


John
 
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