All screenshots shown in this blog are from a beta version of Military Operations and as such, may not reflect the final released product.
If you are reading this blog, you are likely familiar to the immense scope of WWII. The massive Armies, the hundreds of kilometers separating them from victory, the gigantic amount of resources needed to keep them in the fight, plus the astonishing skill set required to be in command and make sense of all the chaos of war.
The operational level of warfare has been brought to our computer screens in different formats and we have fought our operations for better or for worse. A few of us have shivered at the thought of how an Army-sized martial Leviathan would look like, from head to tail, splattering destruction over the peaceful countrysides of yesteryear. But for the most part, we have found comfort in the conceptual efficiency of counters or hexagons.
Military Operations (MilOps) is trail blazing a portrayal of warfare never seen before in an off-the-shelf computer simulation. With a terrain engine that can potentially represent the entire globe, from orbit to street level in a visually attractive format, it will bring the "World" to "War". So novel is this approach that the first thing you will experience in MilOps is a benchmark utility to make sure that MilOps will run properly in a wide variety of hardware combos. This benchmark will be released around June, according to this press release.
The gameplay will be in continuous time with computer-driven staffers and commanders for both the player's and enemy's side. The scope of the gameplay will be operational/grand-tactical, although the engine doesn't squander the thrill of seeing individual vehicles and troops executing their orders.
The development team's blog is choke full of material outlining the design ethos for Military Operations. The mention of Robert Leonhard's "Fighting by Minutes" scores very high in my book, but the solid thought given to the current state of affairs in operational level wargaming is worth of mention. The developers have extensively played other operational level wargames and make a solid case for how they can be improved.
I can tell you that I have never seen a virtual battlefield of this size or a representation of war this extensive. It is nothing less than a shock for me to see how much real estate and vehicles a supply train takes. Similarly, the view of just a single panzer battalion moving into the attack humbled me. The terrain can wither out your armor shock if you are not careful to take it into consideration. And off course, there will be command and control considerations on top of that. I'm bracing for a war in a way I never experienced before.
It is always refreshing to see new quality wargames coming out. MilOps promises more than just a novel approach but an ambitious and brave take on wargaming.