The update includes three new free scenarios, several major rule changes, UI and controls improvements like an “Entrench All” button, and some bug fixes.
The new suppression rule changes do two things. First, it adds a feature to the Editor which allows gamers to designate formations that are suppressed and the conditions that need to be met to lift the suppression. If the HQ of a formation is suppressed it does not broadcast a command radius and the combat ability of the whole formation is substantially reduced. The Kharkov scenario has been updated to accommodate the new suppression system, which helps to restrict the use of several German formations in the south of the map at the start of the game.
The second new change similarly brings a new feature to the Editor and an update to the Kharkov scenario. First, a scenario designer can now designate a formation as needing to be in supply to get timed replacements. If a formation needs to be in supply to get timed replacements, but starts a turn on an unsupplied hex, the replacement timer will not decrement. Additionally, the Kharkov scenario has been altered so that Russian units will only get Timed Replacements when in supply, Axis units are unaffected.
David Heath, Director of Operations at Matrix Games, said “This is a gigantic update for Kharkov fans. Apart from reaping the benefits of all the engine improvements SSG has been hard at work on for Across the Dnepr: Second Edition, the three new free scenarios will surely keep armchair generals busy for quite a while! We hope that this encourages Kharkov owners to also try the new Across the Dnepr: Second Edition expansion, which presents players with one of the best operational challenges in wargaming.”
In Kharkov: Disaster on the Donets, you command the Soviet forces, newly confident after stopping and throwing back the Barbarossa offensive, or try the elite and seasoned German army now reconstituted after Winter losses and ready to regain the initiative. Two separate forces prepared offensives in the same area in the Spring of 1942. When the dust had cleared the Germans had managed a great victory that opened the doors to the drive on Stalingrad. But the outcome was far from certain and in Kharkov: Disaster on the Donets, history is yours to rewrite.
This new system supports both regimental and battalion level combat, while incorporating many innovative features such as off-map reinforcement decisions and on-map historical areas of operation with mystery variants to increase replayability and limit the effect of hindsight. Along with the streamlined supply and movement systems, a new bonus and advantage system for headquarters effects, simplified direct fire and improved combat tables, an improved strong points system and the ability to create hedgehog defenses make this the most advanced and realistic SSG design to date. This is the first in a new successor series to Decisive Battles, with an updated Across the Dnepr sequel already in the works!
- Successor to the highly popular and award winning Decisive Battles and Battlefront engines, combining the best elements of both
- An innovative and fun area of operation system which limits unrealistic redeployments for both players, with changes triggered as local objectives are achieved and based on mystery variants to keep the enemy guessing
- Improved and simplified supply, movement and direct combat systems
- Improved combat tables that better model diminishing returns and new HQ bonuses that can affect Direct and Indirect Fire
- Improved strong points and new hedgehog rules
- Models both battalion and regimental combat
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