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Last night I had the chance to play my first game of White Star Rising. I've had the game for a while, and I even have Operation Cobra expansion. There was a lot I liked about White Star Rising, but for me there were some things that just didn't sit well with me. I really liked the game flow. I loved how the units have all the attack factors built in. I liked how there are chances to save units... but the HQ seemed a little too powerful. It seems key to equip your longest range most powerful weapon with the HQ to get the extra attack bonus. I also didn't like that Mortars could op fire. This just seemed silly to me. I had to imagine in my mind that it wasn't a mortar but an MG 42. When I play a wargame I like the feel of the units reacting on the field and this really sucked that feeling away for me.

Gameplay- Overall I really enjoyed the gameplay. Now that I know how to use the HQ more effectively I think that will bother me less. I still dont like it just due to the disadvantage a new player has if he doesn't know... almost feels like a cheat getting to roll 2 extra dice 10 spaces away cause the HQ is with the mortar doing an op fire. I would be interested in writing in a variant that excludes attack factors with ordinance weapons like this.

The Units- I really like the artwork on the vehicles.. I was a bit confused when the infantry had only NATO symbols. After reading a bit I saw it was an easy way to distinguish soft targets (NATO symbols) from hard targets. It certainly made it a no brainer. I liked the variety of the units, and I really liked how the counters had all the die rolls built right in.

Command Radius- This was pretty cool. Having to keep all my guys within range of the HQ got harder and harder as my faster units progressed and my slower units drug behind. I really liked how armoured infantry could flip over and be in an armour carrier. It gave a great feel of "move forward" "Covering fire" while the slower units caught up.

The Maps- Mounted boards, very nice. Not a fan of the light green color but the maps were easy to identify hills, trees, and towns with no confusion. The quality is very good.

The Scenarios- While I haven't played the others yet, I'm excited to see what lies ahead. Looking through them it really looks like I am going to enjoy them.

Chit draw mechanic- I was a bit worried about this at first but it was well balanced and very fun. It was a nail biter before each draw, and if your units didn't get activated this turn there was a mechanic that made sure they were activated the next.

Solo playability- I think this would play well solo. I rarely play solo games but I think the chit draw would be a big plus. Playing solo would also give me the chance to try rules the way I feel they should be played with mortars. When playing 2 players I always feel the need to play the rules out of the box or not play just because if you meet another player you have to agree on the house rules. Just my opinion

Bottom line- The game seemed to be heavily against the Americans in scenario 2 but it ended up being a nail biter. A lot of fun and a good feel other than the things I mentioned above. Now sometimes things like that happen and it just blows the game for me... but it didn't.




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Gary Barr
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It's a good game overall despite a few flaws.
Personally I don't mind the OP fire mortars as they were amongst the most effective weapons on battlefield and amongst the highest Inf killers. Many games such as old PzLeader make them virtually useless
Nice counters indeed but some of the stats are bit hard to read and I would have liked a better contrast between flip sides of counters.

It is an easy to pick up game which flows very fast and the chit pull system works fine especially with the fact you mention that those formations that don't get an activation in one turn are sure of one next.

I keep forgetting to utilise the fate points but they a bit gamey anyhow

Am looking forward to the Desert Heat and Stalins Triumph expansions

Cheers
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Tanks Alot
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I just found out through another player that said Mortars cannot op fire... now that makes sense to me. Still seems odd an HQ can add 2 dice to a mortar attack... thats a lot of power to be added for a long range attack...
Small detail in a great game though!
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Dundy O
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WSR was my first foray into war gaming on a deeper level than Memoir '44 or Hold the Line. I loved it from the first play. Very fluid, fast, fun. The chit-pull system was the favorite element for me. Like you, every time I'm ready to draw, I'm sweating.

Adds tension to a very accessible game.

The HQ thing was weird, and like you, I struggle to keep every one within range.

My least favorite element of the game are the green boards. Ugg. I notice that many people also have trouble reading the counters. I'm glad I'm not the only one, though I am getting older and my eye-sight is becoming more challenged.

It was nice seeing your review about this game, because it holds a special place in my gaming heart. When it was first released, it made a huge splash, but I haven't heard much about it in the last 8 months or so.

Nice write-up.
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Wister wrote:

My least favorite element of the game are the green boards. Ugg. I notice that many people also have trouble reading the counters. I'm glad I'm not the only one, though I am getting older and my eye-sight is becoming more challenged. :)

Nice write-up. :)
Man I am with you on the counters. I saw somewhere where people color coated the bottom of the units to make it more visible to see the formations. Last night as my units spread and mixed with the enemy I had a hard time distinguishing my units from the enemy.
As far as the HQ goes, the adding 2 extra dice seemed to make it more "gamey" instead of historic. And I love leader support in Lock n Loads band of heroes...
I think the HQ with the mortars just aggravated me and I couldn't shake it. I really liked the game
I'm hoping to play Totsentag (sp) next.. different system but I am interested in how they compare
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Stéphane Tanguay
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charlescab wrote:
I just found out through another player that said Mortars cannot op fire... now that makes sense to me.
Hum...The rulebook say, after presenting direct fire procedure for mortar that Mortar may also fire (but not opportunity fire) at hexes NOT within their LOS. That where I gathered that you can OP fire with mortar if they do it at hexes in their LOS.
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Stéphane Tanguay
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charlescab wrote:
I'm hoping to play Totsentag (sp) next.. different system but I am interested in how they compare
Can play this too. Very different game systems though !
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Gregory Amstutz
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White Star rising is my war game of choice. I know there are flaws in the system - heck, every game system has them - but I love it. It's not too complex - only 8 pages of rules!, has set objectives for victory, with turn limits, so the game doesn't last too long and can be played in one evening, great looking images on the counters, all in a nice, neat package. And, for me, I've always preferred US-centered war games, so even though Conflict of Heroes is also a good system, it's the Eastern Front, which just doesn't thrill me.
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stanguay wrote:
charlescab wrote:
I'm hoping to play Totsentag (sp) next.. different system but I am interested in how they compare
Can play this too. Very different game systems though !
I cant wait!
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Robert R
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charlescab wrote:
stanguay wrote:
charlescab wrote:
I'm hoping to play Totsentag (sp) next.. different system but I am interested in how they compare
Can play this too. Very different game systems though !
I cant wait!
Charlescab, thanks for the review. And thanks for all the Lock N Load videos on Youtube, btw.

Would you consider this to be one of the better platoon-level WWII games? I played Panzer Leader last night for the first time, and though it felt outdated, it certainly made me more interested in that scale of wargaming (I've focused mainly on blockgames, squad-level games, and CDG's).
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Todd Reed
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You may also consider the new PanzerBlitz: Hill of Death – The Battle for Hill 112, Normandy 1944(w the second edition rules). It's slightly more complicated than WSR, but also has a nice feel to it.

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r3gamer wrote:
[q="charlescab"][q="stanguay"][q="charlescab"]

Would you consider this to be one of the better platoon-level WWII games? I played Panzer Leader last night for the first time, and though it felt outdated, it certainly made me more interested in that scale of wargaming (I've focused mainly on blockgames, squad-level games, and CDG's).
Man I wish I knew! I havent played many platoon level games. Fighting Formations is awesome I know, and I played half a game of Panzer Grenadier which has a great following but it really depends what you like.

What was interesting about this is the simplicity and how the die were all built into the counter. Made things very easy to look up. Ive never played Panzer Leader so there is no way I could compare, but it truly is a question of how heavy you like your games.
White Star Rising was a fun game but it felt nothing like Fighting Formations.

If you like low complexity platoon level games, and you like the idea of keeping units in a command radius its the game for you. If you are looking for a higher level of detail you may want to look at Panzer Grenadier or Fighting Formations.

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charlescab wrote:
I just found out through another player that said Mortars cannot op fire... now that makes sense to me. Still seems odd an HQ can add 2 dice to a mortar attack... thats a lot of power to be added for a long range attack...
Small detail in a great game though!
Actually, with all respect, that is incorrect. As per the publisher Mortars CAN Op Fire. They are not support weapons but units with movement points. Mortars did a lot of damage to infantry in WWII. So the HQ Modifier does not seem too extreme...especially since you are just rolling one die.
 
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Sean Druelinger
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Mortars can Op fire as long as it is direct fire and not indirect.
Thank you
Sean Druelinger
LnL Publishing
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