Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Status Update

Just a brief word on the PACOPS modification effort: this is still an active project which I am hoping will see some release work forthcoming in short order. While I cannot promise specifics at this point, I can say that work is being performed in an effort to bring this to fruition. The intention is to release a Battle of Saipan grand campaign scenario by June 2014 and the team is hoping to achieve this goal.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Type 92 Battalion Gun

The Type 92 Battalion Gun could be used at a low angle in a direct fire role to take out MG nests and light armor, but could also be used at a high angle in an indirect fire support role. It was a short barreled weapon with a split trail carriage that was lightweight enough to be pulled by a single horse if required. The weapon had a maximum effective range of 2,785m and could fire HE, AP and smoke rounds.

A large amount of these infantry support howitzers remained in China following the end of World War II and were utilized by the People’s Liberation Army who began manufacturing ammunition for the surviving weapons for use in their military. The weapon was used as late as the Vietnam War by the Viet Cong.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Type 92 Heavy Machine Gun

This weapon was based on the French Hotchkiss M1914 and utilized the 7.7X58mm Arisaka cartridge. It was introduced into service in 1932 as a replacement for the Type 3 HMG. Nicknamed the “Woodpecker” by Allied forces due to its distinctive sound, it was capable of firing 400-450 rounds per minute with a muzzle velocity of 800 m/s and was deployed on a tripod.

Type 96 Light Machine Gun

This weapon was based on the French Hotchkiss M1909 and utilized the 6.5X50mm Arisaka cartridge. It was introduced into service in 1936 as a replacement to the inferior Type 11 which had issues with jamming in various battlefield conditions. It was capable of a 450-500 rounds per minute firing rate with a muzzle velocity of 735 m/s and employed a detachable top mounted 30 round box magazine.

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Type 94 37mm Anti-Tank Gun

This weapon was developed based on the design of the German 3.7cm Pak 36 anti-tank gun to improve upon and replace the Type 11 37mm Infantry Gun that had been in service since 1922. That weapon was considered an inferior substitute for an AT capability due to its low muzzle velocity, poor range and slow reloading time.

The Type 94 began production in 1936 with approximately 3,400 units produced. It could fire both HE and AP rounds and was usually assigned in groups of four to combat infantry regiments. Although the weapon had performed well against Soviet light armor, it was obsolete when facing Allied armor such as the Sherman tank.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Saipan Map Progress Report

The latest iteration of the Saipan map being worked on exclusively by team member Jim Carravallah:

Full size image is available here.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Type 93 Flamethrower

Both Type 93 and Type 100 flamethrowers were used by the Imperial Japanese Army and Navy (SNLF) during World War II, although during the later war period their use devolved into an ad hoc anti-tank capability that met some marginal success on the battlefield. The type that is being modeled for the PACOPS estab is the Type 93 model.

The original concept was to field these weapons in flamethrower companies comprised of between 6-20 units, and these companies were organized into engineer regiments within a typical infantry division. The base unit contains 20 soldiers with 20 flamethrower weapons, with an infantry value of 20, a recon value of 4 and an engineer value of 2 (based on guidelines set forth in the estab editor manual).

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Type 89 15cm Cannon

Only 150 of these artillery pieces were made from 1929-1945, however it did take its place as the main gun for IJA heavy artillery units. Classified as a Fortress Gun, it had a firing weight of 10,360kg and could fire a HE or AP shell some 19km (it also could fire shrapnel and illumination shells, however those are not being modeled in this build). It could fire approximately two rounds per minute and had a muzzle velocity of 875m/s.

For this effort I will clone the American 155mm M1A1 gun and edit various parameters in order to mutate it into a plausible weapon for the Japanese forces. For the aper and the bombard ammunition I will use the existing JPN Type 1 HE Shell. Several sources reference that the shell was considerably heavier than that used in other 150mm howitzers; however I have not located a specific reference to the shell weight to make a credible change to the cloned data.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Progress Report and Alpha Build 1.0

Happy New Year! While things have been somewhat quiet on the blog for the last several days due to the holidays, a great deal of work has been going on behind the scenes with estab files, force lists, scenarios, briefings and graphics. A change log will be detailed at the bottom of this post to identify some of the work done in the Estab Editor.

I will also be posting the first alpha build of the PACOPS mod which contains battle specific Force Lists for use in the Scenario Editor. A sample mission that mimics the landings by US Marines on Green and Red Beaches on D-Day, June 15 1944 and the tragic counterattack launched by tanks of the Imperial Japanese Army’s 9th Armored Regiment is also included.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Type 97 Chi-Ha Medium Tank

The 9th Armored Regiment of the 1st Tank Division was reassigned to the 31st Army in April 1944 and sent to Saipan where it was effectively annihilated and not reorganized. Commanded by Colonel Tadashi Goshima, the unit consisted of 31 Type 97 Medium Tanks (modeled below), 4 Type 97-Improved Medium Tanks and 12 Type 95 Light Tanks.

Just after midnight on June 16, 1944 the Japanese forces made a large counterattack against the US 6th Marine Regiment on the beachhead near Charan Kanoa and were soundly repulsed due to inexperience in mounting tactical armored engagements. The Marines were able to concentrate their firepower on the assault and were augmented by naval gunfire.