Monday, 27 February 2012

Game 6 : In front of Moscow

This was game 6 at the Situation room and is really a variation on a theme. I'm currently restricted, until reinforcements arrive, to playing eastern front. One advantage is that you can try various situations, troop densities and scenarios to see how well the rules cope and especially in seeing if the games have the "right" feel.
We played 3 games, all of which were linked. Each side had a top level OB from which they had to pick formations for each of 3 games. Depending on the outcome of each, either side might accrue an advantage for the next game. Each formation had to be used at least once, but could be used more than once especially in the Russian OB.
The setup was controlled by an abstract recce system, the side "winning"the recce deciding on which table edge to start from.This picture shows the Germans in game 1 taking the town by turn 2, forcing the Russians to try and counter-attack. The Russians were at their worst morale/training stats for this game and so were repulsed by the Germans in all areas and pushed back. Troop density was 2 Russian Divs against 1 German Div and the immediate result was to see a lot of space for manoeuvre. Using this space allowed for both sides to probe for holes but you did have to be careful not to over manoeuvre at the expense of the central objective which was the small town and the main single highway.
I liked this piccy as it shows Adam after we had tried to cut him down to size. But it also shows Germans in the foreground in trucks. It shows the truck bases are the size of the whole company which better reflects the length of a road column without having to have individual trucks for each base. The trucks have bases depending on the nation/organisation and type.
This shows a Russian infantry formation trying to contest the town after losing the recce and having to march on. They were on a loser from the start, accurate feel for the setting of the scenario.
The second battle followed the same format and pitched similar forces against each other. The result of the second game was a complete destruction of the Russian forces.
The conclusion of these games told me that Early German Panzer troops against superior number early Russians and in the relative open, would lead to German success on a regular basis, a result that seems in keeping with what actually happened.
The last game would have a large town, with strong defensive buildings and a river running through the middle of it. The objective would be the town, the bridges over the river and the main highway. Neither side would know if the river was fordable. We constructed a table of various types of ford and when troops first reached a ford they rolled a die to see what type of ford, if any, existed. The result was kept secret from the side who had not yet reached the river.
The battle for this town showed how towns negate the manoeuvring abilities of troops and also how attritional battles are. It was difficult for well trained troops to bring this training to the fore because close fighting can be quick and it is certainly deadly. It was also nice to see infantry with anti-rifles driving off tanks from both sides within the confines of the town.
This piccy shows the 2 bridges over the river and the town. Flank attacks were to no avail as the river turned out to be unfordable to vehicles in these areas. However, in the centre, the river was fordable to tanks and infantry. the piccy actually shows German tanks with snorkels crossing, they were deployed in the centre before we knew the state of any fords.
The guys who played these games are in the next piccies. Adam had to go early and Graham arrived the same evening, so we had even 2 a side for the whole week. It sounds like a long time, but when you have good games with relaxed like minded people (and in some instance drink a lot!), then it doesn't seem that long.

My last mention for this post concerns the rules. The rules are in beta version and printed. Guys who come here get a copy as it is still a "live" document where we amend/change rules as our experiences suggest. This process has been going on for over a year and is nearly finished. The rules proper should be published later this year. Anyone who would like more details or who have more detailed questions are welcome to contact me here or directly via e-mail.

And just a note to also say that the Napoleonics is slowly building up. I hope for at least a game this year. Until next time!