Part 1: Tutorials - Counters
So yeah, this is a pretty complicated game and there's no way I'll be able to explain everything in one go. What I am going to try to do is cover the basics, and maybe we can get into the minutae of the game later. The on-map armies and divisions are represented by counters or chits, which display all sorts of very important information about the unit if you know how to read them. The two most important bits are the type of unit, and the nation of the unit.
The type of unit is denoted by the NATO symbol, which look like this if you're not familiar with them.
While the nation of the unit is displayed by the color of the counter, like so.
At the bottom of the counter is a pair of numbers seperated by a symbol. The first number is always attack value, and the second number changes depending on the symbol. If there is a - then the second symbol is the movement points of the unit, so a 9-18 would mean the counter had 9 attack value and 18 movement points. If there is an = sign then the second value is defensive combat value, so a 1=3 means the unit has one attack value and 3 defensive value.
Normally all enemy units will disply X=Y, with the values being filled in for whatever our recon thinks of the unit. If we don't know anything it might just say ?-?. Our units will usually be displaying movement value, but I might switch over if I want to see how our defensive positions are shaping up.
Finally at the top of the counter is a series of characters that denotes the rank of the unit.
II = Battalion
III = Regiment
X = Brigade
XX = Division
XXX = Corps
XXXX = Army
XXXXX = Front, Military District, STAVKA
Also if you're wondering why our troops are garbage and the Axis units can actually fight let's compare our tank divisions to the German ones. Beyond the fact that they have actual combat experience and have skyhigh morale, lets just look at what we're bringing into combat.
On paper the Soviet division is way stronger! We've got a few less men but we've got over twice as many tanks, infact we've got more tanks than any other nation in the world. How could we possibly lose?
Oh, oh my. It seems the Germans actually brought all the things on their table of equipment to fight with, and our table of equipment is a pipe dream. Atleast we've got 200 of these.
I'll probably do some more of these as we encounter game mechanics more involved than catching a train over the nearest river.