Monday, January 25, 2016

Combat Commander more action

Played four more scenarios with my Dad of this addictive game.

As usual I played Allies in each scenario.

First had my Russians against a Finnish force defending a forest trail in 1939 which the Ivans won rather handily forcing a Finnish surrender.
Next up was a British Commando Raid in 1940 which proved to be a disaster as Germans got multiple reinforcements including a pesky 81mm off board mortar which decimated my hapless Tommies.
Then it was off to Crete in 1941 with my chaps defending a ridgeline against advancing Fallschirmjager.
I got pretty lucky in this one taking out Dads key leader and holding onto key Victory Locations until Sudden Death clock ran out.
Last up was Russians vs Germans near Minsk in 1941 with another victory for the Reds who close assaulted their way to victory.
As ever great stuff with lots of drama and random events generating exciting games.

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Honours Of War first 'official' game

Played lately released Honours Of War rules today with Stephen.
We had played a few test type game with draft versions from author Keith Flint of the rules but this was our first outing with the nicely produced Osprey set.
I used my Prussians and Stephen fielded his Austrians.
I used Age Of Reason maps to set up the terrain and we went for a points based game (2400 points each) and simple encounter type battle (not very SYWish but good enough to test rules).
We simply diced for sides set up (after drawing deployment on map) and rolled for weather which turned out to be rain (-1 to all shooting)
Battle developed quickly into a fierce struggle for the two central villages and intervening ridge.
Cavalry on both wings were held back initially.
One of my Infantry Brigades became undone by having a Dashing Commander who rolled a 6 generating an 'Inspiring' result whilst close to enemy meaning I had to charge nearest enemy units.
This saw my foot go pell mell against a defended village and into teeth of advancing Austrian Grenadiers (ie Superior foot types).
In a bloody round of melee I lost 3 Infantry Battalions and a gaping hole opened in centre of my line.
From then on it was a case of trying to shore up line whilst Mounted launched themselves into fray.
Another hectic round of melee saw 3 Prussian and 2 Austrian Cavalry Regiment destroyed and several units suffer broken morale.
Game ended as Prussians had 11 out of 21 units destroyed (ie over Army Break Point of 50%).
Not bloodless for Austrians as they lost 5 or 6 units with several broken (but these are recoverable and do not count towards Army Breakpoint)
Enjoyed the game with rules working really well being easy to fathom and play.
We thought playtest versions were too bloody but Keith has reduced hit a tad and combined with rain shooting was not as decisive as before.
The melees however were brutal with opposing units either dying outright or being reduced to broken status meaning they had to retreat and spend several turns rallying and reforming.
All in all a good clean set of rules that give a quick decisive outcome.
Liked how Prussian units (at least pre 1760) are very maneuverable and Army has inherent bonuses to Initiative rolls and Commander quality.
We also liked how such options disappear once you get close to enemy.
The unit support rules are important but with obvious risks from Artillery bounce through and forced interpenetration (from Retreats/Routs).

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

More Piquet action.....

Had another blast with solo Piquet game over last few days (1-2 hours over succeeding evenings)
I played a few more turns of Les Grognards before (for reasons unknown !) I decided to reset the game using Command Piquet.
Used same table and forces but this time the Prussians fielded their full complement of troops whilst the French had 2 units of Young Guard and 1 of Middle Guard 'left out of battle'.
Both had similar Army Morale with Prussia obtaining an Excellent deck and a D12 Commander, French had a D10 Commander and an Average deck.

Play saw the Old Guard Brigade struggle for central village whilst a large Cavalry encounter took place on their left flank.
Young Guard brigades plowed forward against Prussian foot and gave their Grenadier Brigade a rough handling at least initially.
However the Prussians had a Cavalry Brigade in reserve which shored up the Grenadiers and then proceeded to destroy a Young a Guard Brigade opening a gaping hole in French line.
At same time two Prussian Dragoon Regiments bypassed their battling comrades to flank the village forcing the French Infantry into squares.
A 'feature' of CmdPK compared to FOB is the fact that when a unit Routs friendly units within it Defence Dice radius must test, I quite like this despite the extra dice rolls.
Of course a couple of routs proved disastrous for France whittling their strength down until they were out of Morale Chips thereby being unable to Rally and Hits or Routers.
Command Piquet also has a 'Hold Test' for units that suffer hits from shooting but I much prefer FOBs 'odds vs evens' system as much more streamlined method.
For solo game I found CmdPKs D20 vs D20 initiative to work fine though again the FOB system of Active and Reactive initiative is more 'balanced' for want of a better word.

All in all great fun using these older versions of PK for solo play although of course the use of Opportunity Chips is bit problematic especially in CmdPK which has a lot more and with options to not only fire but possibly have a sort of 'mini initiative' run.

End of battle

Meagre Prussian losses 

Severe French losses 

And even more....

Friday, January 15, 2016

Piquet Les Grognards game set up

Set up a solo game using Piquet: Les Grognards Napoleonic supplement.
I also used the Theater Of War system to generate the terrain, deployments and pre-battle set-ups (main outcome being the absence of 6 Prussian units !)
Only couple of turns done using the basic D20 Initiative System (works fine for solo games) but a few pics taken.