Recommend
2 
 Thumb up
 Hide
5 Posts

Duel in the Dark: Baby Blitz» Forums » General

Subject: Does the Baby Blitz expansion unbalance the game? rss

Your Tags: Add tags
Popular Tags: [View All]
Kenneth Stein
United States
Toledo
Ohio
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
After setting up and playing Duel in the Dark with the Baby Blitz expansion, with 5 others, 4 of whom were new to the game, it was soon apparent that the Brits would get creamed. Even a newbie, who controlled the V-1s and the He-177, could see that you used as many of the delay cards as possible to tie down 1 Mossie over England. This left only 1 to fend off 5 nightfighters. If 2 Mossies were sent to escort the bombers, the German side would get a net gain from the attacks on English cities without danger from anything but the puny AA assests. The He-177 then has a field day getting 6 Vp for uninterrupted flight.

Furthermore, the Uhu seems like a wonder weapon. It gets points for shadowing a Mossie, subtracts Brit VPs when it escorts the other nightfighters, gets points like the others against the bombers, can move further in a turn, AND it's invulnerable!

The spoof raid doesn't really contribute enough points to pay for itself and is quickly identified. Then 1 bomber faces 5 fighters for certain on the return home. The quad flak is a nice turn, but it's just more for the German side.

The optional rules have all sorts of balancing tips, and in truth, this can all be modified in some fashion. Add a 3rd Mossie to fly CAP just over England, reduce the number of fighters, more VPs for the spoof raid, etc. But I didn't think I was buying a wargame "kit". Unless you are eagerly committed to the game system and fixing "broken" things as a hobby, you are going to feel very shabbily treated by the game designer/manufacturer. Didn't anyone playtest this thing?

I am usually very upset by any of my group who tries a game once, doesn't do well, then dismisses it as "broken" or terribly unbalanced. I'm sorry, but the problems I've described above appear structural rather than due to faulty play. Unfortunately, despite MY desire to tinker with the rules to regain the thrill of the original game, my cohorts refuse to come near it, not wishing to waste their time on an uncertain fix.

Any suggestions on what I may have overlooked or ways you have successfully played the game as designed would be most welcome. I've eaten humble pie before.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Lukasz Biernat
Poland
Dabrowa Gornicza
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Don't tinker with the game, just play some more.
From my baby blitz experience (2 veteran ditd playrs):

- as germans, we are happy to get 0vp total from V1 raids - try to pay more attention with placing those 'puny defences'. They can really negate V1 scoring. Unless, you were outguessed!
- if you're so scared of those 5 nightfighters, bring your second mossie to the battle, instead of defending. V1s are not gonna win the war (they don't earn any serious vp and can be negated with ground defences). With two mossies you can kill ground markers more effectively, and drop more flares on a target city.
- Uhu is not a wunderwaffe - sure it's fast, but it wont save the day when you're bringing two mossies. And it's not invulnerable - it counts as a nightfighter, so your mossies can score VPs for incoming Uhu. And it has to land sometime - block the airfield when it lands and then drop lots of bombs on it
- spoof raid is a tricky one, I rarely scored positive points with it. I had a good raid once - when I started as a single stream and split just before bombing - and bombed 2 different cities in 1 move.
- as for He177 - it has to choose a distant city to score all those free VPs for uninterrupted flight. That gives you time to return with 1 mossie and bomb his airfield so hard, that it's whole mission was useless! And when it stalls and refuses to take off for the mission - drop some bombs on his airfield, so he's screwed from the start.

I think that the british have to adopt more to the new rules than the germans. I felt similar frustration when playing baby blitz as the british, yet I was losing only 4-5 VPs a game, and I'm sure I could win if my planning was better. I'm not claiming that baby blitz is totally balanced - we couldn't play it right for a long time (because of the horrible ruleset and lack of developer support), but now, most of the questions are finally answered and we can enjoy - for it's a great looking and extremally well themed game!
2 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Kenneth Stein
United States
Toledo
Ohio
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
Thanks for the detailed reply. I do still have some differences I'd like to throw out.
-Bombing the 177 on the ground helps some, but that's only 1 VP/bomb. You don't know where it'll land so you can't count on hitting the landing. More importantly, isn't it better to bomb a Flak in a hex with a searchlight in the bomber's path so you deny 2 VPs/bomb? You may guess right on the 177s path a few times and net 2 VPs, but then what are the V-1s and the Axis Ftrs, doing?

-The Brits only have 9 AA to spread around. If they spread out to cover many approaches, they score few points. If they concentrate (2 in London, Birm., Bristol ) they risk 4 unopposed points in Wey. & Fal. And what about Hull? If I launch from hex 18 I only pass over 1 hex likely to have AA (Hull). Given that AA only scores 1 VP, it does seem puny. At least I haven't been able to come up with the type of arrangement that would result in negligible VPs.

-The UHU is confusing. On the Reference chart it subtracts 1 VP if in a hex with a Mossie. Therefore it IS invulnerable if it does fly into a Mossie. There are so many airfields available that it is tough to speculate with bombing them if the fighters don't wait until they have no fuel and MUST land in that hex. And again, there are now 5 Ftrs.! vs. the Main raid, especially on the way back.

-That said, I do appreciate your greater experience. My arguments are as much those of my friends who apply hte logic stated and don't see how the expansion is balanced as is. I would be happy to treat this like games treat the Japanese side in Pacific games: we know we'll "lose" but lets look at your negative score compared to my negative score.
1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Josh
Canada
Cambridge
Ontario
flag msg tools
“Some people never go crazy. What truly horrible lives they must lead.” -Bukowski
badge
“And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.” -Friedrich Nietzsche
mbmbmbmbmb
If the game seems unbalanced in favour of the Germans (and if you own the Duel in the Dark: Early Nights expansion), what about adding these rules:

-all bombers plot only their inbound (toward the target) moves during the initial setup
-after bombing a city, each bomber immediately plots its route back to a home airfield
-the Spoof Raid must target one of the German green/easy cities
-the green city markers from Duel in the Dark: Early Nights are used as the base number of victory points for the Spoof Raid, instead of 7
-the Spoof Raid bomber is affected normally by weather conditions during its bombing run

Giving the Brits a few more potential points for the Spoof Raid, as well as the ability to plot a safer route home through the ground defenses, could help tip the balance back a little towards the Brits.

1 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Lukasz Biernat
Poland
Dabrowa Gornicza
flag msg tools
mbmbmbmbmb
The game has enough official optional rules, I don't think you'll be needing more than that. The most powerful allied enhancement seems to be: giving the spoof raid complete immunity to GRMs.

As for the Uhu confusion, read the official FAQ I compiled: http://boardgamegeek.com/thread/418793/gathered-list-of-unan...
You're right, that Uhu is invincible when it enters the mossie hex alone, but only during right weather conditions.

You cannot bomb Hull with V1s, so I usually don't place any defense there (hoping that my mossie returns from the reich on time to save the day). I like to place AA guns on the shore, so they can shoot incoming nightfighters, and shoot at V1s that cross the channel.
The weather does not change in baby blitz, so plotting the raid is extremally important - I tend to plan long raids on new moon, using as much clouded hexes as possible. Full moon and/or summer are lethal, so short raids seem to be more safe.
3 
 Thumb up
 tip
 Hide
  • [+] Dice rolls
Front Page | Welcome | Contact | Privacy Policy | Terms of Service | Advertise | Support BGG | Feeds RSS
Geekdo, BoardGameGeek, the Geekdo logo, and the BoardGameGeek logo are trademarks of BoardGameGeek, LLC.