While the Germans started the war using general defensive works similar to those used in WWI, they quickly developed a more dispersed method of defense. Instead of a platoon dug in in a linier trench with communications trenches to rear and between postiotions they developed a defense in depth with hedgehog style positions.

This system relies on interlocking fire from several positions to provide mutual support. These positions may be 2-3 men up to a full squad.