I recently read a piece on how Soviet tactics translate well onto tabletops. The discussion of tactics struck me as very applicable to the Martian offensives.
Soviets advances scout forces along multiple axis, followed by a maneuver group, and then the main body. If scouts encountered reistance, the following maneuver group would pass through annd reduce the resistance. If unable, then the main body would switch to a different axis and continue the advance. Built up areas would be invested with infantry to tie up defenders while the armor bypassed and continued moving.
I see this as almost perfectly describing Martian tactics.
Picture this, Scouts, either singly or in pods of three advance toward human lines. Behind each is a pod of Assault tripods and a Grenadier. When Scouts encounter humans, they use targeters to mark targets for the Grenadier and the Assault tripods attack. If this breaks the resistance, the Scout(s) resume the advance.
Behind them is the main body, consisting of at least another pod of Assault Tripods, preferably Veterans, Reapers, and Slavers with drones. If/when all axis of advance have ground to a halt, the main body passes through and attacks. Reapers and Slavers with drones concentrate on any built up areas, fortifications, or trenches. Assault/Veteran pods continue pushing against mobile forces looking to make a breakout. If successful, they continue moving.
So how many scenarios involved getting a specific number of tripods off the human player's edge? Looks very much like a Soviet armored advance to me.
Oddly none of my players try this typically they go after the human artillery if they can first then usually do a 2 pronged attack to avoid the center and try to have the human player spilt the forces.
Well, they need the forum right but, I suspect if you demostrate this as a Martian player one night... A lot of tactics developed IRL work well up to a point for the Martian and some as well for the Humans. Soviet 'defense in depth' tactics in regards trench lined humans seems to be valid as well, especially if well supported by artillery.
If I have any frustration with Martian tactics is that all the interesting tripods are too slow and generally under armored. Human prey and infantry can outrun a good part of the Martian war machines. 6 inch move vs an 8 inch move is a bigger deal than it appears. Also the ones that have a decent speed cannot assault.
I hear you but in the case of Scouts (descent speed), a sweep attack can be devastating. I suppose I'm okay with most of the speeds as the power of the heatrays at range can do a job on most infantry. And the new Veteran tripod is the bomb, reasonable speed with more armor and additional heavy heatray - a real monster. And the Dominator, with a painted target by the fast scounts, have the entire table in range, so a true standoff artillery type piece. Its too bad we'll probably not see an Overseer for years (if at all) as that Sunbeam would really change human tactics as their mobile howitzers are suddenly in 1st turn range. I also think you cool alternating unit move phases can change the battlefield 'speed' as the Martian punches and counterpunches selectively rather than having to do it all at once. I mean, the Assault can move 20" a turn, 30" if using an order, on what is basically a 48" wide table (okay 72" if playing 'narrow' edges). An Assault moves 8" (10" if upgraded by Scientist) and then adds 30" for its heatray range, Covering all but 10" of the table width, less any terrain of coarse. Lets see a few more battles with your move/countermove system first.
The Soviet master tactic goes back to the Mongols. It works great on the Steppes, but it gets messy where there is more terrain. The Arabs, using Soviet tactics, lost consistently to Israel. (The middle eastern and African deserts are featureless, not flat. The low hills and the heat related haze create lots of places to hide. )
Humans counter by letting the Martian Scouts pass then engaging the follow up units with ambushes. When the main body commits to an axis, counter-attack with heavy armor and Artillery.
By the time the Soviets went on the offensive, the Nazis still had good guns, but not enough shells. The Nazis had the best tanks, but the Soviets outnumbered them 5 to 1. The Soviets had the perfect tactic to make the best use of what they had and who they fought.
The Israelis let the light units pass then plastered the main units with combined air and armored assaults.
This is a good tactic for Martin, but be careful if the human player is a decrepit old cold warrior.
Hehe 'decrepit old cold warrior'... I often will do my OOBs using the narrow edge table format. It allows much better results for human artillery, more focused martian attacks, and so reason for both side to enjoy reserve forces. When I want a much harder fight for the human, the orginal long edge format works best. If there are small numbers, the long edge also works well, giving flanking room on table and making for a more mobile form of battle. Except for walled city scenarios. These tend to work well in both formats, narrow and long, because there is the wall. And possibly trenches in front of as well. One of the things I'd like to do is design more Ambush scenarios. Outside of Lawrence, Red Brigade, Yeti Battalion & some Pedro Villias (Panchos AQ sons) resistence games, I've yet to consider doing a full scale Ambush scenario. This would be a waver to the normal number of Ambushes allow - it would be one massive human ambush, with every infantry and infantry gun artillery unit in ambush status with or without traps. Once the trap is sprung, the reserves in the form of tanks and mobile artillery (ships & planes if possible) enter to pound away and shut off any retreats. One of the most telling of these forces would be the riverine and coastal naval assets. A show of 3 or 4 predreadnoughts off the coast would be devastating to the martian cause; even the riverine monitors with their heavy guns could put a knot in the martian tentacles. And what of the thus far ill-fated Goliaths? With a goodly number of those, the USA would have a tank that could really hurt any martian force. Platoons of MkVs working together would be major. One of the major rules overlooked in discussion of the Goliath is its Turbine Blowers. These increase the speed (4") to up to 8" with the increasing (1 per 1") of the blowers on the Goliath damage chart if a total 10 is rolled (d10 + 1/1" added speed). With the range of its main armament, its 4x MGs, the MkV is an answer to the human needs for toe-to-toe armor against tripods. A platoon of 3 has a massive firepower, including 12 MGs that fire independently of the main gun (its not clear that the co-axial mg can't fire also) and a crew of only 8, this is the future. Combined with the new British Special Weapons Battalion Battletanks (Cromwell, Montgomery, etc), the Goliath will be the main foil to the martian invasion for USA forces.
Teddy Roosevelt of AQMF seems to favor an approach similar to the WWII Soviets:
You can break anything if you hit it with a big enough hammer.
The first tanks used 37mm guns. The Mk3 uses a 75mm gun, then Teddy and various tanks up the ante to 105, 122, 155 then on up to 305mm, AKA a 12 inch naval rifle formerly used for Battleships.
That's one honkin' big gun.
Monitors, i.e. ships designed mostly for shore bombardment, often drew as little as 10 feet of water. With a turret with 2 12-inch guns.
They could float in a swimming pool.
(Well, no, they still displaced more water than the average swimming pool, but I like the image.)
Mussleman's (r) Apple Sauce comes in a plastic tub (individual serving size) that can make a decent turret for a Goliath (12 inch gun.) The individual sized tubs used for butter/buttery flavored spread in restaurants are good for smaller turrets. Just like Teddy: We Can Build It.
Now: concerning a technologically and numerically inferior military winning by the use of ambushes and traps, as well as brass balls, that's been done. The Yankees beat the British that way in the Revolutionary War.
Yes indeed and I love the thoughts on making the 'turrets'. I as well as others are heavy into the whole monitor thing in various places on the forum. "Do not interupt an enemy while he is making a mistake" Sun Tze