Getting Started - Scenario Design Center
Soviet armor, mechanized infantry and special forces surge across the frontiers of the northern Federal Republic of
Germany under the blazing fire of helicopter gunships and the swarming menace of the Red Air
Force. The industrial heartland of the Ruhr and the ports of the
Netherlands shine as beacons for this moment many had estimated, yet none had believed possible.
Welcome to Modern Campaigns
North German Plain ’85. This guide is designed to get you playing immediately.
For veterans of the Modern Campaigns system, be sure to check out the "What’s
New in North German Plain ‘85" section of this manual.
Insert the North German Plain ‘85 CD if you haven’t already and after the introductory cinematic, you’ll be taken to the File Selection Dialog. Click the scenario
#00_Started and then ok.
This takes you to the AI Selection
Dialog where you choose the side you wish to play. For the purposes of this tutorial, select Warsaw Pact AI "Manual" for yourself and "Automatic With Fog of
War" for Nato. Click ok to get the game underway and you are now the Warsaw
Your first Command Report will appear with information relevant to the first turn.
Note its contents and beware that the information you see may differ from that illustrated. No game of
Modern Campaigns will ever play the same way twice. Click ok to close it.
OBJECTIVE OF THE GAME
Click Info and then Victory on the Menu
Bar. As you can see to obtain a major victory in this battle you must earn 250
Victory Points by the scenario’s end.
Click ok to close it.
If you look at the map, you’ll see some oval shapes with numbers inside them.
These are your objectives. To win a major victory you will need hold objectives and inflict enemy casualties equal to 250 points. As you incur losses points will be taken away from you.
In this scenario the Warsaw Pact moves first. Let’s probe the enemy’s lines with some reconnaissance and three assets exist for this purpose all of which are included this scenario: land, helicopter and air.
Click on the unit indicated. It is the 94th
Recon Battalion, a land unit and its information is now displayed in its
Unit Box in the Hex Info
Area. Let’s send this unit northwest.
Double click the recon battalion on the map or click its
Unit Box so that the Unit Box lights up. It is now "selected" and ready for orders.
Let’s move it one hex at a time. To do so right click an adjacent hex. If able to move it will obey.
The Status Bar will tell you why if not.
Let’s now move this unit to a distant hex – the crossroads two hexes to the west. To do so, with the left mouse button down drag it to the indicated hex. The system will determine the path it follows so it’s wise to drag smallish distances to keep control because with fog of war active, movement cannot be taken back.
Doing so may reveal an enemy unit. Did it fire at you? The system handles enemy reaction fire during your turn and will likewise fire your units during its turn. If necessary and if it is able to do so, continue moving the recon battalion until it occupies the crossroads as shown.
Click on the unit indicated. It is the 3-94th Helicopter Squadron, a helicopter recon unit and its information is now displayed in its Unit Box in the Hex Info Area.
Right click this Unit Box reveal more data about the unit including its recon status.
Select the helicopter recon unit and click the Change Travel
Mode Button on the Toolbar. You’ll see a white line appear at the bottom of the unit and a "T" next to its movement points. It is now in Travel Mode. A helicopter may only fly if in Travel Mode.
Report indicated that
SIGINT (electronic warfare which occurs at the start of each turn during a scenario in which it is active) had detected an enemy unit which now sits at the northwest of the map with a "?" icon. (Tip: Remember, do not be concerned if you do not see this unit in your current game. As with many things, SIGINT is probability based and no scenario will ever play the same way twice. You may in fact, currently see another unknown enemy unit elsewhere on the map or none at all).
Let’s send your helicopter recon unit to scout that portion of the map. With the unit selected, drag and drop it to the first village due north from its current position as shown. You will likely run into a West
German mechanized infantry unit and it may respond with anti-aircraft reaction fire.
If you survive and posses sufficient movement points to do so, try moving your helicopter unit, hex by hex northwest as shown. It is very likely that you may uncover more enemy units along the way and receive their reaction fire.
Let’s now see if we can gain some information regarding the vicinity of the 50-point objective hex using air reconnaissance.
Your Command Report advised that you have air units available this turn.
Click on the 50-point objective hex to make it your target and then click the Call Air Mission Button on the Toolbar.
bold denotes a mission capable of flying against a target hex.
A dialog will appear showing all air units at your disposal. You’ ll notice only one listed in bold at this time – a
Recon Flight of Mig 25
Being listed in
Foxbat’ s line and then ok.
An air recon mission will be conducted against the selected hex.
If successful, enemy units within the visibility range of the target hex may be revealed in varying detail. Visibility may change from turn to turn. To find a turn’s visibility range, look at the Terrain box in the Hex Info Area.
(Tip: Enemy unit information with fog of war active will be hidden from you and summarized as X = less than 10 men, XX= 10 to 99 men and XXX = 100 to 999 men).
Let’s continue your ground reconnaissance.
Locate the 94th Recon
Battalion once again.
This time, change it into
Travel Mode exactly as you did with the recon helicopter unit. Travel
Mode gives a ground unit a larger movement allowance particularly when using roads and is the only means for a ground unit to cross a river or a canal at a bridge. The act of changing movement mode may trigger enemy reaction fire.
Move the recon battalion northwest across the bridge at the canal and continue along the primary road until it makes contact with an enemy armored unit as shown. Reaction fire may ensue. Beware that when in Travel Mode, offensive and defensive strengths amongst other things are greatly reduced. It costs movement points to change out of Travel
.If able, click the Change Travel
Mode Button on the Toolbar now. Your recon battalion will revert to its safer Deployed
(Tip: Clicking the Reachable Hexes Button on the Toolbar will highlight the extent a unit may still potentially move in a turn.
Clicking the Divisional Markings Button on the Toolbar will add color to your forces based on the organizations they belong to.
Pressing the Shift key will add locality labels to the map. Try each of these now. The canal you have just crossed for example, is called the Elbe-Lubeck).
Let’s now initiate some combat. Select the Tank Battalion as shown and move it adjacent to the enemy’s guided missile unit. Click the Change Travel
Mode Button on the Toolbar to set it to
In Modern Campaigns most direct fire occurs against adjacent hexes. Right click the tank battalion’s Unit Box and you will see that its range against both hard and soft targets is one hex.
If your unit survives reaction fire against it and possesses sufficient movement points, you may return fire.
To do so select your unit exactly as you did for movement. Now with the Control
Button pressed, place the mouse over the adjacent enemy unit. A crosshairs will appear. Right click to fire.
The results of your fire will be shown on screen – either there will be no effect, you’ll cause fatigue, a loss or possibly disrupt the enemy (the results will be yellow) or cause it to be broken (the results will be red).
Let’s send our attack helicopters into the fray.
Select the 1-94th
Toggle Travel Mode to send it airborne and maneuver it two hexes away from the enemy’s guided missile unit.
Right click the helicopter squadron’s Unit Box and three things will become apparent: Because it has a hard attack factor it is an anti-tank helicopter unit. The unit is denoted
"Guided" meaning it is armed with guided missiles. Lastly, the unit has a range of two hexes.
Leave your helicopter squadron at its current location. Fire at the enemy guided missile unit exactly as you did with your armor. The results of your fire will be shown on screen.
If the enemy unit still remains on map it may have been weakened sufficiently to conduct a close assault against it.
Select the 1-3 Motorized
Battalion as shown and move it adjacent to the enemy guided missile unit.
To enter an enemy occupied hex, you must assault it.
To do so, select your motorized battalion and right click the enemy’s hex. A dialog will appear announcing the initiating of an assault. (Note:
Changing your motorized battalion to Deployed Mode now though safer, would leave it with insufficient movement points to assault this turn).
To conduct your assault, click the Resolve Assault Button on the
Results will appear showing both sides’ losses. If you
’ve won and any remaining enemy retreat you will capture its hex. If you win and the enemy is unable to retreat you will capture some of its forces instead but not enter its hex. (Remember do not worry if your outcome does not match the one illustrated as play will differ. In this case the assault met with total success).
Let’s now bring in some air support.
Click the enemy armoured unit adjacent to your recon battalion at the north of the map. Click the Call Air
Button on the Toolbar. The Air Mission Dialog once again appears. As an eligible friendly unit now spots the target hex, three air regiments await in bold for your orders. Select the first entry, the SU24 Fencers of the 118th Fighter-Bomber
As with your air recon mission, click ok. Your air mission will fly against the designated hex and if successful its combat results will be displayed on screen.
Continue moving the remainder of your units in any order you see fit. At minimum, try to maneuver your Howitzer Battalion and 2nd SP Howitzer Battalion to their destination hexes as shown.
When you’ve finished your actions click the Next Turn Button on the
Toolbar and click ok if prompted. The enemy will move and fire its forces. Your units may fire automatically in reply. Some enemy movement may be spotted. Your next turn will be announced once the
Warsaw Pact Command Report appears.
It is still daytime and you may note that many enemy forces revealed during Turn
1 are no longer visible owing to the enemy’s recent movement and an absence of Warsaw Pact units in visibility range.
Let’s recon the 50 point objective hex again. Select the
94th Recon Battalion and move it hex by hex adjacent to the objective as shown.
You will find the objective still held by an enemy mechanized infantry unit.
Let’s fire some artillery at that hex. Artillery can fire at any unit in its range so long as an eligible spotter can see it.
Select the Howitzer
Battalion as shown. It is a towed artillery unit meaning it must be deployed to fire. Toggle it into Deployed Mode now.
Check the unit’s range by right clicking its Unit Box. You will see your howitzer’s range is eight hexes and the
50-point objective rests within this range.
To fire artillery follow exactly the same procedure used for regular fire. The results of your fire will be shown on screen.
In Modern Campaigns some artillery units may be capable of firing chemical ammunition and mine ammunition. Your Command Report advised that you have chemical ammunition and artillery mine ammunition at your disposal.
Select the 2nd SP
Howitzer Battalion unit as shown and toggle it into Deployed Mode.
(Note: Being a mobile artillery unit it could fire in Travel Mode with a corresponding Travel
Let’s now fire a chemical barrage. To do so click Command and then Use Alternative Fire on the Menu Bar.
With the Control Button pressed, place the mouse over the 50-point objective and a crosshairs will appear as normal. However, this time when you right click to fire, an
Alternative Fire Dialog will pop up.
Click Use Chemical
Weapons and a chemical artillery attack will occur. The results of your fire will be shown on screen and a green
Chemicals icon will be placed in the target hex.
Now if able, maneuver and select another artillery unit in range of another enemy unit. Let’ s fire an artillery mine barrage. Follow the same procedure as for your chemical attack but this time click Use
Artillery Mines in the
Alternative Fire Dialog.
The results of your fire will be shown on screen and a gray Minefield icon will be placed in the target hex.
Let’s now introduce some reinforcements. Your Command Report advised that reinforcements have arrived this turn. Click the Arrived
Units Button on the Toolbar.
Dialog will pop up listing reinforcements ready for entry.
To introduce a reinforcement, double click its listing in the
Arrived Dialog. Now check the eastern border of the map.
You will see the 2-94 Helicopter Squadron, in flight awaiting your orders.
Examine the squadron’s Unit Box in the Hex Info Area.
You will notice it comprises of men and not vehicles unlike the other helicopter units you have commanded so far.
Toggle the squadron into Deployed Mode and now move it hex by hex. Unlike your other helicopter units, once landed this type of helicopter unit converts into an infantry unit.
Toggle it into Travel Mode again and it reverts to its airmobile status.
FINISH THE GAME
You now know how to move, fire and assault with your forces. With the victory conditions in mind keep maneuvering your forces in the manner you see fit. The end of the game will be announced at the conclusion of the enemy’s final turn at which time final Victory Points will be shown.
To restart the scenario click File and Selection in the Menu Bar. A list of scenarios will appear and you may select any by double clicking on its entry.
(Tip: Scenarios 10_01 to 10_07 represent larger, longer ranging campaigns containing many variations. New players may wish to proceed with something smaller before embarking on these offerings of the game).
This Guide is designed to make you feel comfortable with what’s going on in
Modern Campaigns but it is no substitute for the User Manual, which is the series’ rulebook. You can see this whilst playing by pressing F2 or click User Manual here.
The Main Program Manual discusses the various elements of the interface in helpful detail. You can see this whilst playing by pressing F1 or click Main
Program Help File Main Program Help here.
If you wish to delve inside the game designer’s head, Press F3 whilst running the game and Designer’s Notes will be yours or click Notes Help
File here. Be sure to also check out the essay by Bob Mayer entitled Northern
Exposure: Operation RHINEGATE: North of the Fulda Gap History Help File here.
Pressing F4 invokes a feature called the Parameter Data
Table. It provides a host of information including movement costs, terrain benefits and stacking limits amongst other things.
Don’t forget that PRESSING F4 invokes the all-important Parameter Data Table.
Become familiar with it and note that its figures may change from scenario to scenario to depict the nuances of a battle at hand.
Lastly, documentation for the game’s editors may be found in the following help files:
Scenario Editor Help File
Order of Battle Editor Help File
Finally be sure to check out the "What’s New in North German Plain ‘85" section of this manual.
WHAT’S NEW IN NORTH GERMAN PLAIN ’85?
Built Up Areas Without Roads
To simulate the enormous movement costs associated with operating in a built-up area, roads may not connect all hexes in some multi-hex towns. Movement between these hexes is still permitted.
However, the road movement rate will not apply.
Though not a new concept it is important to remember that some units in Travel mode, are capable of crossing rivers and canals without the benefit of a bridge at the cost of their entire movement allowance. Such units are designated "Amph" or "Amphibious" in their Unit Boxes.
Changes Introduced With Korea ’85 1.01
Veteran gamers may wish to pay specific attention to the following rules introduced with the update to Korea ’85:
Wired Bridges, Ferries, Limited Air Recon Optional Rule,
Congestion and Minefield Attack Movement Loss. (Ferries and Congestion were rules added for another game and are not used in this title).
Retreat Into Enemy Zone of Control
Gamers should also note that whilst a retreat into an enemy zone of control after an assault is usually prohibited, a unit may retreat into such a hex if it is occupied by a friendly unit.
Also introduced with the update to
Korea ’85 is a change to the
A unit listed with a
0% arrival probability in the
Scheduled Dialog shares the first non-zero arrival probability a unit above it. This new convention serves to assist scenario design only and has no effect on game play whatsoever.