Tuesday, 12 April 2016

Game 40 : Prelude to Smolensk

This is a very short report on another test game we played. At the end of May, we plan to pay a game set in early 1941 on the Eastern front. The idea will be to pitch a German Panzer formation against a Russian defence based on infantry divisions and tank divisions. This was a playtest  of the game. The force composition was a single Panzer division for the Germans and a partially dug in Russian infantry division. The Russians would be reinforced by a Tank division, the Germans receive no reinforcements. We included an air component, more advantageous to the Germans and the Russians had a few Force composition choices to make, each with their advantages and disadvantages. 
The big mistake I made was to forget taking pics. Big mistake. So, I've tried to show the OBs for each side on the Excel layout I use. If you can read it great, if you can't then I have to leave it to your imagination.
Either way, you can see that all the kit has a colour coded label and this is reflected in the sheet. The first sheet is German. Give one sheet to each German and they just keep tabs of their allocated troops. Add a double side laminated reference play sheet and a double side laminated weapons sheet and that is all the paperwork required. Its a method I've used since 1993 and it still holds up well. Its even better when I spend more time laying it out on an Excel spread sheet and maximising font sixe to A4 page. The things we do when we have time on our hands.
The Russian forces have a triangular infantry division and a tank division with two tank brigades, each of three tank battalions. One brigade is made up of T26s, the other brigade has a full mix of tanks, KV1, KV2, T28, T26. There is a recce btn with BT7s and so a lot of variety.
 As I said, a short and sweet report. I didn't want to ignore the game as it still took a weekend to play. But apologies for the lack of pics. I will rectify that for the next battle which I will report on this week
The battle was a good game with respect to seeing what happened when both sides were utilising the full length of the table (24'). There were spaces everywhere. The Germans managed eventually to gain a tactical advantage but it was close as the loss ratio for both sides was about even. The Germans were attacking, and no matter how good you are, you will always take losses on the attack. The key is the balance between persisting with the attack or halting the attack to regroup and then redeploy if need be and go again. The table space allowed this to happen and it worked well. As usual, a good time was had by all.
And finally, its never complete without the rogue's gallery. There was a new player to our merry men, Tony who is on the right hand side. An experienced gamer, his input is very valuable as WWII is an area where he has done an awful lot of research. Just retired from the Army, so he tends to know what he is commenting on!
Next stop, Borodino playtest, 1812!!


  1. Hi Gerry - no pictures this time but I am sure you will more than make up for it on the next big game. The OOB's looked bloody interesting.

  2. Could you read them? Tomorrow is "Sands of Sudan". Hurrah!!!!!!

  3. It is with Dave Docherty & Steve Scott and I will post piccies!! And then put it on the blog.