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#4495583 - 11/01/19 05:23 PM M1 Tank Platoon II vs. Steel Armor: Blaze of War  
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Gorn6739 Offline
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Hello everyone:

Having tapped out Steel Beasts for now I've been looking to branch out into some other modern tank sims. Unfortunately as you probably know there aren't very many, so I've been trying to decide between M1 Tank Platoon II (which somehow I missed back in the day and never got around to playing) and SABOW.

I am aware that M1TP2 is 20 years old and the graphics are far inferior to SABOW. With that being the case, what opinions do you have on the merits of the two games otherwise, and which is worth devoting one's limited time to first? How do they compare in terms of gameplay, campaigns, realism, etc.? They both seem to have their merits (e.g. M1TP2's dynamic campaign, SABOW'S ability to command the whole battlefield) and their downsides (some bugs in M1TP, and... I'll just say the "Graviteam interface"). What do you think?

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#4495593 - 11/01/19 05:52 PM Re: M1 Tank Platoon II vs. Steel Armor: Blaze of War [Re: Gorn6739]  
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Red2112 Online content
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Airborn
Have you considered "Iron Warriors" (T-72 The Balkans on Fire)?

Red



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#4495607 - 11/01/19 07:30 PM Re: M1 Tank Platoon II vs. Steel Armor: Blaze of War [Re: Gorn6739]  
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33lima Online content
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M1TP2 is hard to get running reliably on modern systems. But still excellent, if you can get around the issues or live with them if you can't. Great campaign content, including the sort of features long absent from modern fare, like 'MPS News' broadcasts to kick off and wind up campaigns.

[Linked Image]

You can still find user-made missions which let you play Iraqi T-72s (albeit with the simplified M1A2 FCS, IIRC) in 73 Easting and UK Challengers.

[Linked Image]

Main limitations are that you command an isolated, variable team, not a coherent force, just your tank platoon with some attachments, which could be anything from another tank platoon to Bradleys, or ToW Humvees.

You often get arty and/or attack helo and or A-10 CAS, but it's heavily simplified - and you don't have an FOO to direct the shoot.

Vehicle set is good, with lots of different Red AFVs to shoot, and STAFF as well as HEAT and sabot to shoot them with. Knocking down Hinds can be fun, and I think I have taken down a Frogfoot with my trusty .50 cal.

It can be un-nerving watching Saggers or other ATGW heading towards you from BMPs etc, and seeing them nose-dive if you KO the launch vehicle in time.

The command interface is pretty good.

Downsides - the missions are sort of space invaders, with Soviet forces just swarming forward towards your baseline, starting with lemmings in BRDMs, with the heavier stuff following, and getting heavier with successive missions. One reviewer described it as becoming like watching red and blue dots fire pixels at each other - because fighting from the IVIS screen can become the only way of keeping on top of what's happening.

Red attackers can halt out in the open for rather long periods, while you have a nice practice shoot on them. Of course they will shoot back.

Red arty is overwhelming and near-instant. If you have light forces assigned like an IFV platoon, they will die as soon as the first red forces spot them, mounted or not. the only way to save them is to use the command interface to assign them a zig-zag route with only the shortest of halts. Or drive them into dead ground somewhere and either keep them out of the fight or as a last line of defence, firing from defilade.

It can be hard to keep your M1A2s alive, as they are not good at using cover. Hull down positions can be hard to find, though a mod which adds contour lines to the map helps a bit.

SABOW has essentially the same interface as the Graviteam Tactics wargame. Sophisticated, but possible to get by without knowing it all. SABOW is a tanksim in the Steel Beasts class, with in many respects better visuals without needing a massive spec. Better AI and implementation of tanking and platoon command and control than WW2-based Steel Fury (but less modable). Frustrating that it has just the two playable tanks, and no full-on, Cold War gone hot, NATO -v- WARPAC campaign in good tank country. Respectfully suggest reading this... https://combatace.com/forums/topic/85814-steel-armor-blaze-of-war/ ...and such other Mission reports on SABOW over at CombatAce. Well worth learning the interface.

[Linked Image]

Iron Warriors/T-72 Tank Commander I have and wrote about here... https://combatace.com/forums/topic/83055-iron-warriors-balkans-on-fire/ It's essentially an earlier generation still of what became the Graviteam tank sims, and has some nice features, though I never persevered with it.

[Linked Image]

Attached Files M1TP2 2014-07-12 16-13-01-60.jpgsimxx.jpgM1TP2 2014-06-19 22-24-58-87.jpg
Last edited by 33lima; 11/01/19 07:38 PM.
#4495802 - 11/03/19 03:57 AM Re: M1 Tank Platoon II vs. Steel Armor: Blaze of War [Re: Gorn6739]  
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Gorn6739 Offline
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33lima, this is... wonderful. Rarely- no, never, do I ask a question online and get such a complete, thorough, well-informed, off-topic response. THANK YOU!!!

#4495888 - 11/03/19 10:54 PM Re: M1 Tank Platoon II vs. Steel Armor: Blaze of War [Re: Gorn6739]  
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33lima Online content
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33lima  Online Content
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My pleasure. If you decide to try M1TP2, if you expand the description to this relatively recent video, it has links to stuff the uploader used to get M1TP2 working:



I still have most/all the user-made missions and can zip and mail you them if needed.


Last edited by 33lima; 11/03/19 11:06 PM.
#4495972 - 11/04/19 05:09 PM Re: M1 Tank Platoon II vs. Steel Armor: Blaze of War [Re: 33lima]  
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Gorn6739 Offline
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Please do! I'll PM you.

#4495976 - 11/04/19 05:25 PM Re: M1 Tank Platoon II vs. Steel Armor: Blaze of War [Re: Gorn6739]  
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DBond Online content
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Originally Posted by Gorn6739
33lima, this is... wonderful. Rarely- no, never, do I ask a question online and get such a complete, thorough, well-informed, off-topic response. THANK YOU!!!


I don't play these games (anymore), but I read the thread and that's what I thought too. A detailed reply full of good info and exactly what the OP was looking for. It's great all-round, a good reply, and a recognition by the OP (which frankly, you don't always get). Good thread, although I would rate it as on-topic smile.




Animals flee this hell, the hardest stones cannot bear it for long. Only men endure
#4496015 - 11/04/19 09:23 PM Re: M1 Tank Platoon II vs. Steel Armor: Blaze of War [Re: Gorn6739]  
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33lima Online content
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33lima  Online Content
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Thanks guys! Missions emailed to Gorn!

#4496160 - 11/06/19 03:35 AM Re: M1 Tank Platoon II vs. Steel Armor: Blaze of War [Re: DBond]  
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Gorn6739 Offline
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Originally Posted by DBond
Originally Posted by Gorn6739
33lima, this is... wonderful. Rarely- no, never, do I ask a question online and get such a complete, thorough, well-informed, off-topic response. THANK YOU!!!


I don't play these games (anymore), but I read the thread and that's what I thought too. A detailed reply full of good info and exactly what the OP was looking for. It's great all-round, a good reply, and a recognition by the OP (which frankly, you don't always get). Good thread, although I would rate it as on-topic smile.




Er... yes. Meant ON topic smile.

#4496757 - 11/10/19 11:51 AM Re: M1 Tank Platoon II vs. Steel Armor: Blaze of War [Re: Gorn6739]  
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Agathosdaimon Offline
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m1 tank platoon 2 has some life in it still if you are willing to get it working and then explore it and the user content for it - and best of all there is a map and mission editor/creator that stll works for it if you run it through dosbox. i have a rar file on my google drive that i can send to interest folks, that has all the stuff i have saved over the years - the patches, the extra missions, sound mods etc.

i would say that yes the M1 TP2 AI will mostly follow a type of plan, but their point of entry onto a map can be uncertain at times and the full make up of their force unknown and ithe placement of forests and rivers and hills will mean also challenges with trying to determine where they all are sometimes.

i will say this too, that the AI i think is a bit different in version 1.1 as to 1.2 - the AI helos in 1.1 are ferocious on both sides and enemy tanks take some sic pleasure in trying to run over soldiers rather than just gunning them down if they are close enough.
Also i played some missions recently and the AI totally eluded me - i had to stop them and was not able to locate them all before then disappeared off the map again and attack me off map from the rear. The 1.1 ai is aggressive if they have any chance to hit you from the sides or rear, but if your front is facing them they wont fire, unless they are within 1km range. despite this they can still be tough and if you get attacked from multpile directions it soon become easier for them to get at your side armor

it is such a shame that m1tp3 never got finished and released - steel beasts is the only thing that has come close but even then it lacks the content that made m1tp2 great.

I think there could be potential with DCS world's "Combined Arms" module to be much like m1tp2, a few things felt familiar withit, it just needs more missions and a campaign or 2 of its own. Combined Arms could be so much better than what it is, i hope ED improve it


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