Anyone played Panzer-Corps?

I haven’t checked to see if there were any threads on this (apologies if there were previous threads about this game), but thought I’d ask here to see if any 'dopers have tried it out. It doesn’t seem to be on Steam, sadly, but they have a download install from their website (here if you are interested), plus what looks like a ton of DLCs out for it already.

What it looks like, as near as I can tell, is the old Panzer General game (the original 2D version), but perhaps with a ton more pieces. I haven’t played PG in years, and if this is like that I’d probably enjoy the game. So…anyone tried it? Is it worth getting?

The differences aren’t so much in the pieces as in the changes in gameplay.

The main difference in Panzer Corps is that units no longer need to move & attack in the same motion. One unit can attack, then another unit can attack, then the first unit can move. This is true even of artillery, and it makes the puzzle-piece frustrating movement of PG a thing of the past. Units cannot however, split their movement (i.e. move unit 1, move unit 2, move unit 1 again) — except for recon units, giving them a bit more usefulness.

Also, while units no longer get automatic elite reinforcements after a battle, they can be overstrengthed in between battles.

One other big change is ‘hero’ units that can gain special abilities. It gives the core units a little more personality (I’m not a big fan of it, though).

Upgrades are intended to be to newer versions of the same equipment — ‘cross-upgrades’ are more expensive.

There are also ‘dual-use’ units. This essentially is for the Flak 88s, which can spend a turn to convert from pure AA role to pure AT role, although a few other units exist. (And AA & Air Defense are combined into one type).

The units, and especially the scenarios, do differ from the original. Bridging engineers are no longer the king of infantry — now they are more specialized. The gameplay changes pretty much require different scenarios, and they are all redesigned.

To get some idea of the UI changes, you can play Panzer General Forever. PGF is an exact-as-can-be remake of Panzer/Allied General (and some experimental WWI games) for modern Windows (i.e. XP or later), with some considerable interface enhancements. It’s free, and the programmer was then tapped to work on Panzer Corps.

You know who else played Panzer-Corps?

I played it some, and it really is very close to PG2, albeit with some tweaks and refinements. To me the two biggest changes were:

  • no more tank overruns. You can’t soften up units with Stukas then send a lone Panzer II to mop up everything from here to the Volga anymore. At first I was dismayed by the change, but after playing some more, it’s not so bad. The trouble is that now, tanks sort of struggle to find a niche - they naturally suck at attacking infantry or AT units entrenched in cities, which is what you’ll be doing 90% of the time ; they’re not particularly faster than mechanized infantry… mostly they’re relegated to fighting other tanks, providing token support through the massed fire mechanic, and guarding the wings.
    I found recon units to be better than them at dealing with enemy artillery behind the lines, at least until the Russian fronts where roving packs of T-32s will blow the shit out of your puny 8-rad SdKfzs wholesale.

  • upgrading is very different, and makes a lot more sense. In PG2, when you upgraded any one tank into any other, you only paid the difference in cost between the two. That is still true in PC if you upgrade within the same chassis (e.g. upgrading a Panzer IVB to a Panzer IVD, or a Ju-88A to a Ju-88D). However, if you switch to a different piece of equipment, you pay the full price as if you’d just purchased a new one, the benefit being it has all the experience & leaders of the old. This mechanic, and the fact that renown is in short supply, changes your army composition a lot - now instead of an all-modern, all-elite force you’ll be playing with a small core of elite, up-to-date murderkillers surrounded by a passel of either outdated stuff, or green new stuff. It’s pretty cool in practice.

That being said, I found that the combat random number generator tended to be a little… fucked up ? Wildly innacurate ? Prone to flights of fancy ?
Basically, in PG2 when you hovered the cursor on a target and it said “you -2 - him -6” you could rely on the click to cause your unit 2 losses and his 6, plus or minus say 20% on either side. In PC, I’ve had combats forecasted as “0/-4” ending up a “-7/0” :/. Without a critical hit or rugged defence, mind you.
That makes it pretty frustrating sometimes, notably when you lose some of said elite, modern core to some retarded dice rolls.