I pulled out all the stops and grabbed every "destroyed building" I had including some really cool Epic 40k ruins I purchased on ebay a few years back. They blend in well with the other scenery. I even sprinkled some ballast rocks to give the impression of rubble. This was a sweet game but the pictures tell the best story.
Mission was the "Domination" mission from the "boltaction.net" website. 3 Soviet squads plus 3 T-34/76 face off against a similar number of Germans, 2 x Panzer IIIs and 1 Panzer IVF. This mission has it all - Reserves, plus lots of maneuver and decision making.
|Urban nightmare terrain! Even on the roads I made a "bogging check" on a roll of a 1 whenever a tracked vehicle moved over the rubble area.|
|Panzer IV scans for targets.|
|The yellow dice are objectives. The number showing on the die is the amount of points the objective is worth. The center objective is worth 3 - the most.|
|T-34 hit by the Panzer IV! The shell chips the paint and stuns the crew. 1 Pin marker for you!|
|Troops hop off a T-34 and race for cover. They grab an objective but come under fire from some Germans in the department store!|
|T-34 creeping around the flanks.|
|A Soviet squad moves into the town.|
|Green die is a pin marker. He's hit by a measly 50mm shell. More paintwork chipped.|
|The twin pair of Panzer IIIs goes hunting.|
|Meanwhile the German main effort reaches the rubble in front of the "big" objective.|
|The German squad in the department store scans for targets. They would attract the attention of almost every Soviet unit on the right flank!|
|Situation! Soviets advancing from the left, Germans from the right.|
|"We have the objective in sight Herr Leutnant!"|
|Russians race around the flank to contest the objective and knock out that Panzer IV. As you can see he has alot on his mind this particular turn. Like "which T-34 do I take out now?"|
|German reserve squad not in the town yet. Slowly but surely.|
|WE ARE FIGHTING FOR OUR LIVES HERE! WE NEED HELP!! The Feldwebel screams to a runner he spots. The destroyed buildings all around are filling up with Ivan and they all are taking a keen interest in this squad in the rubble pile.|
|Some lucky German shooting and the MMG joining the affair kills a Soviet squad in the town center but is it enough? Is it ever enough?!?!|
|No shortage of volunteers to liberate the motherland! Soviet reserves pour across the bridge and into the town.|
|Scratch one Gerry tank! A T-34 does more than chip paint, Comrade!|
|Guys follow me! Guys?? Where is the rest of my squad?|
|German reserves trickling in. Too little, too late!|
|Scratch another Panzer. This T-34 has set himself up to grab another objective and fire on the reinforcements arriving.|
|Party headquarters is spotted intact! Race to the top of it and pour fire down on the Russians. I can't believe we didn't think of this sooner! Hurry damn you! It's the end of Turn 5!!!|
|Officers and MMG gunners scan for targets. There are plenty of them.|
|By now all the Russian reserves are in and about to open up on the Germans in the center.|
|8 pin markers! I want to go home!|
|End of turn 6 they won't be able to shoot unless we roll to continue another turn!|
|the Germans have snuck a Panzerschrek team around the woods! Unbelievably they contest the objective as they're within 3 inches of it. The Soviets don't get credit for this one. Especially with a Panzerschrek team pointed at the soft flank armor!|
|Situation in the city center. This looks like a Soviet victory to me!|
|The view from the department store. The Germans hunker down and prepare to vacate the city!|
Looks like you need lots of terrain to keep Bolt Action interesting. Duly noted! I will play this same scenario with FUBAR (the free skirmish rules available in my links section) to see how it goes.
I learned a few lessons here - namely that if you want to keep your troops on the board, you have to keep them in cover. Shooting is merciless on targets in the open.
Also I finally figured out where officers benefit your units in Bolt Action - because prior to playing this game I could never figure that out, and my officers usually just sat around the battlefield or were used as an additional fire team.
With officers accompanying a squad possibly designated as "the main effort" you increase your chances that they'll pass pre movement morale checks if they're pinned. Hell, every little bit helps. 9 or less seems like an easy number to roll, but if you have 3 or 4 pin markers on your squad, that turns into a 6 or a 5. with an officer providing his morale benefit, you can make that roll a little easier perhaps. My officers all arrived as reserves with the command group, and I found myself wishing they were closer to the action.
Reserve placement. Reserve placement is very generous and you can almost place them anywhere on your table edge you want. I enforced a strict entry-area for both sides and all this did was ensure they they almost wouldnt be used for both sides, with most reserves getting their first opportunity to fire around turn 5!
Tank riders. Do this. If you have tanks do this. That's all I can say. Unparalleled mobility if you don't have tracks or trucks. The Russians all of a sudden had 2 squads and 2 tanks in the department store sector while the Germans had what equated to a fire team...
Still have lots of painting to do getting ready for my GWOT FUBAR game coming up at the end of the month. So FUBAR on the way everyone.
Oh and last summer was the "Summer of Horse & Musket" so what's this summer going to be???
Napoleonics? SYW?? Finally finishing a single project and getting all my minis from that era painted? "Howe" about the "Summer of the AWI?"