Last year I was taking my first steps into wargaming. Soon I mastered Memoir and Conflict of Heroes but I was looking for more. After reading a lot of great feedback about this game, I decided to buy it and give it a try. I forced my girlfriend to play this with me and guess what… she liked it. 8 Months have passed and we still play this game quit a lot. I could just tell you that this is indeed a good game and you should try it but for those that want to know what I like about this game… Lets have a quick look.
Let start with this. The counters and maps are fine. These are not mounted maps but it’s of decent quality.
The rules are fine but they could use some more examples of play to make things more clear. I also like that the rules are divided into 2 sections. The first section explains infantry combat and the 2nd deals with armor and artillery. This let you play some scenarios without reading everything and makes the game easier to learn.
In the game are 16 scenarios but they released 2 extra after release. I'm not sure they will be included in the reprint but you can get them here at boardgamegeek. The Scenarios offer a good mix of infantry battles and battles with armor and artillery support. They also have a nice variety of game length. Some of these can be played in less than 30 minutes while others can easy take more than 2u to finish.
The balance is not bad but some scenarios do favor a side. American airborne have more firepower than German 2nd line units. This might be historical right, but I find it less fun to play with those German units. Don't get me wrong. They all offer a good tactical play and I like most of them.
I'm not going to write a manual here but just explain what drives this game and what I like about it.
This game focus on getting your enemy surpressed. A surpressed enemy will hit the ground and loses it's effectiveness to fight back. You won't score a lot of kills just by firing at your enemy. You need them to get surpressed so another unit can get in close for the kill.
There are 2 levels of surpression. Surpressed and fully surpressed. A surpressed unit might still be able to fight back but a fully supressed unit won't cause much trouble. When you fire at an enemy an hit them... they are surpressed (hit doesn't mean that you automatically made casaulties, only that your fire is affecting them). If you are able to hit them again or cause casualties, they are fully surpressed. A unit must roll a dice when it wants to do somenthing. Good order squads will always move or fire so you don't have to roll the dice but special actions, like opportunity fire, will be harder and even a good order squad might fail. If it fails... no action can be taken an the unit is spend. You might already guessed it... for units that received surpression it's much harder to pass these checks and they might even fail to do the normal tasks like moving or firing. After each turn is over, units recover one step from surpression so you need to keep them surpressed.
Armor doesn't take surpression and has other rules but i'm not writing a manual as said before.
I like it. It feels right. These game mechanics force you to use the same tactics that were used in the field without being a simulation and having to remeber a lot of rules. You can't just storm to an enemy squad without surpressing it first. Even spend units can final opportunity fire (if they pass the check they can shoot at an enemy unit that gets within on hex of their position) and cause heavy casualties.
This is a great game. Once you master it, it plays fast and delivers a lot of fun. If you like playing wargames, you should give it at least a try. If you never played a wargame before... this might work for you as the rules are not that heavy but I do think there are better options. Also don't expect this game to be a simulation. If you hope that this will be the new ASL, you might get disappointed.
i love hearing positive reviews about this game. I played a few wargames before but found that some are basically lacking any decent strategy. I like how this game uses a different mechanic in the wargame genre, and based on wargamer reviews pulls off these mechanics perfectly.