Monday 19 November 2012

Battle Group Kursk - First Charge Hill 252.2

I set everything up last Thursday ready for Saturday. Printed off the quick reference sheet and cut out the counters. Next came printing out the force sheet and ammo trackers. I did this back to back so players only had to use 1 sheet.
The board before both sides deployed. The line of Soviet and German Tanks mark the furthest deployment point for both sides.
Lesson 1 write out the force sheets and add up the points and the BR before setting out. Using the army lists I had added the trucks and supports for the Germans and the supports for the Soviets, whoops. The game is 1200 points a piece. Once I'd removed the supports etc I got the BR to add up, with the Germans adding up to 1300ish points and the Soviets just over 1200.

Lesson 2 write the force lists up on the PC so you can cut and paste for other games. I did this for Kampfgruppe Normandy and it worked well. On the ammo tracker sheet I add the vehicle and gun statistics, again so the player has everything on one sheet.

For this first game I settled for everything being written out.

Lesson 3 I need more vehicles and figures. I only have 3 Panzer IV's of any letter so I used Panzer III's as substitutes. More daunting is that I don't have many T34/43's but I managed to fill out with T34/85's. Although I have an AA truck it's a 20mm and not an impressive Flakvierling. Figure wise the Soviets were OK but my Germans are late war with lots of assault rifles. Having said I need more figures, I better delve in to the plastic mountain first to see if I have any actors waiting for make up.

We started later than usual on Saturday and not surprising with our first game found the first two turns quite slow. In defence of the rules our first turn had katyusha and Stuka strikes, indirect artillery fire, ambush fire and an heroic action plus a 'stal,stal' move plus area and aimed fire, which cover a good section of the rule book. The next two turns were a lot quicker. So much so I forgot to bring on the German reinforcements.

Lesson 4 even if you've stirred up the counters, do it again and again. I've not checked to see if there are move aircraft tokens than before but we managed 3 aircraft between us. That's more aircraft in all the Kampfgruppe games I've played. We also managed to pull out a mine, out of ammo and a heroic action.

 Thoughts so far is that I'm really enjoying the rules. There are more differences to Kampfgruppe than I had originally realized, artillery I'd spotted but the largest surprise was the impact of moving the rally phase to the end of a players turn rather than the start. So if your unit was pinned you didn't get a chance to unpin it until the end of your turn. In Kampfgruppe you could take a chit and free the unit up again. This simple move in the turn sequence makes pinning a more serious result for the affected player. Just reread that, and I think it's obvious I suffered from being pinned rather than inflicting it.

We didn't finish the game and we continue Tuesday night all going well.

Game report to follow.