Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Die Fighting II Solo bash more play (pics and video)

Played some more of game with DFII.

New Inter-phase saw French Cavalry recover and with resource boost later from Napoleon they managed to deal some hurt to their mounted opponents.

French Infantry however suffered from Prussian guns and a couple of charges by Prussian Grenadiers losing another unit of Guns and one Infantry unit.

French Legere skirmishers are no more.................

French Infantry being pushed back near town

Cuirassiers see off Prussian Dragoons

Video of action, however note I make a slight error in that the beaten Prussian Infantry should have retired in Disorder as having a Fabian Commander they cannot choose to 'buy down' these losses but must Retire 2".

Monday, May 30, 2016

Die Fighting II - Solo bash re-do

After some input from author Bob Jones pointing a major error I made with rules I decided to re-set my solo run through.

The loss of 'only' the units inherent resource value definitely makes a huge difference to how the game plays with regard to the all important use of Resources for each Command.

I had several similar Combat outcomes as in first run through but with losses of 0-5 per unit instead on sometimes double that amount in last game.

This of course makes the 'energy' of each Command much greater (although the temptation to do more/too much rears its head).

The new Inter-phase really comes into its own and creates more decisions as units that have a 'Black dice' do not Restore their unit yield to Resource Pool so one is faced with a diminished Pool but with decision to use some of this under-powered Pool to try to Rally units (thereby contributing their dice in next Inter-phase at least hopefully) or retain for Action phases.

A real Command decision.............

Even on only second run through I am finding it much easier to play and indeed recall the various Free Dice and Re-rolls mostly.

As Bob pointed out the decision in a loss of 6 or less in Combat (Melee or Ranged Firing) is another decision point as a small loss margin of 1-2 seems usually a no brainer but once it get to 3-4 or 5-6 a Disordered Retreat is often a more desirable option.

With potentially large moves (due to combinations of Resource, Free and Command dice) Cavalry are a potent weapon as they can charge stuff at a fair distance.
In game I managed to charge with three Prussian mounted units over 20" each into contact with advancing French Horse and a deployed Horse Artillery units.
If when rolling for a charge (and from beyond 12") one rolls and doubles these generate extra Free Dice as a sort of impetus bonus.
If unit rolls any trebles (or fails to make distance) it becomes Disordered but I was lucky enough not to do so.
The extra dice tipped the ensuing melees in Prussian favour pushing back two French Cuirassier units (one 'gaining' a black dice) and destroying outright (13+ dice difference) the hapless gun battery which failed to shoot off the Hussars hurtling toward them).

Enjoyable stuff.

My only caveat (which I have with Field Of Glory and to a degree with original PIquet) is that not so sure Napoleonic Warfare is fully represented by which I mean lack of lower level Skirmishers and Hasty style Squares (ie Infantry rather easily caught in Line/Column by mounted) does not always 'feel' right if thinking of units as Battalions.
Less jarring if classing a unit as Regiments or Brigades.
But these are of course abstractions which aid fast play and are same for both sides.

I think the rules possibly suit early 18th Century Linear Warfare better overall.

Aftermath of Prussian Cavalry charge and melee (Horse artillery noticeably absent)

French 'Divisions' advance

A Young Guard Brigade suffers a dreaded 'Black Dice'

Prussian Grenadier 'Brigade' deployed

And to its right an Infantry 'Brigade'

Up close and personal with advancing French

That Cavalry Melee again. Note that French command lost all Resources so all units Disordered (luckily near end of turn)

Indecisive melee between Crack Prussian Regulars and French Regular Conscripts

You know what again but after Inter-phase so several French units Rallied from Disorder

Overview of action at end of first turn

French array

French mounted 'Division' before melee ensued

Young Guard 'Division' supports attack on town

French Infantry poised to capture town

Prussian Infantry 'Brigade' under Fabian Commander with Blucher looking on

Prussian Horse that done such damage to French counterparts

Prussian centre

And their right wing

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Die Fighting II (Revised) solo Napoleonic game

Tried out latest iteration (revision sent out earlier in May) of Die Fighting rules by Bob Jones using my Napoleonic Prussians and French in solo game.
System has been amended by Bob in that Commands no longer roll for their Resource/Activity level by rolling Commanders dice but instead its a combination of unit types and Commanders that generate pool (sort of a half-way house between DFI and DFII)
Other 'big' change is that the 4RRR card is no longer in the deck (option to include it as one-off extra card) but is replaced by a new Interphase at end of each turn when Resources are restored, rallies performed and such like for both sides.
So Resource restoration less prone to vagaries of luck than earlier DFII version.
Pools can still be quickly depleted though if a lot of activity undertaken by a Command whether offensively or defensively or in combination.
I had a Command with lowish 19 Resources which after couple of advances (2 resources per unit) and then shooting and melee combat saw pool down to a single resource.
Fighting in a Melee is 1-2 Resources per unit then loser suffers differences in combat dice (optional if 1-6 losses compulsory if 7+, auto killed if 13+ difference).
I had one unit lose by 8 so it lost 2 for fight plus 8 for defeat level and it also then lost its resource contribution of 3 dice (Average Regular unit) as router for a hefty 11 in total, whilst attacking unit only used up 2 for moving into melee and then 2 to conduct the melee (assuming I am doing all this correctly ?)
So resource management is a real core aspect of the rules.
Once a Command goes out of resources its units become Disordered and are hoping for end of turn to get Interphase to restore some Resources (you dont count lost units or those Routing ie having obtained a black dice),
Of course depending on the sequence of the 6 (randomly chosen from 8) sequence cards that could be a long way off if the card you took action with (say an Infantry or a Cavalry action card) came out early in the turn.
In the melee combats it does seem to favour attackers as there seems to be more extra dice awarded than defensively, making astute use of Commanders dice pools a real must.
Not detecting much change to the Napoleonic Dice tables (though sure there are a few) which in Die Fighting awards free dice and re-rolls depending on unit quality, type, situation and suchlike factors.

Little piles of mini-cards at rear are my Resource pools

Oh and more rules to feed the addiction

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Field Of Battle WW2 game with Le Duc

Managed a game this evening (in lieu of not being able to participate in Celtic Cup this year) with Le Duc using, at his request, Field Of Battle WW2.

Been absolute ages since I used these but with the core systems being Field Of Battle they were very easy to get into.
Also been a long time since my 6mm kit has seen action.

I used a Spearhead map and OOB (although from 2 different scenarios) to set up a 1945 clash between SS and Ivan Guards.

Ivans had elements of 2 Guard Infantry Regiments (of 2 Battns each) with two Tank Brigades (each 2 Bttns of T34/76 and 1 of T34/85 and a Motorized Infantry Bttn), backed up by a JSII Regt and off board support from a 76mm Battery.
Rolling for usual FOB stats yielded 6 Assets (used to bring in Aircraft, continue Barrages and such like) a morale level of 28 with a D12 CinC and D10 Leaders.

The Nazis had elements of 2 SS Pz regts both an amalgam of single PZIVh and Panthers with one adding a Coy of StugIVs. they had two weak PzGr Regts in a mix of trucks and SD251s.
Support was a Bttn of Tiger IIs (to which I attached an Armoured Engineer Coy), a PzJager Bttn of Marder IIs and Pak43 Atgs with off board support of 2 Regts of 170mm and 105mm Guns.
Their Cin C was also a D12 with D12 Leaders but lower morale of only 23 and only 3 Assets.

With both sides being Experienced/Veteran level troops the Combat dice were all pretty high (D10 being lowest) but German Infantry had poor defence rolls yielding quite a few D6 defence compared to the D8/D10 of Ivans.
However the Nazis ended up with a poor sequence deck whilst Mother Russia managed to roll up a Superior version.
Ivan Tank Brigades operated as single formations despite being comprised of 3 Bttns of tanks.

As the game was just to showcase the system to Le Duc I simply set it up as a simple encounter with Le Duc having pick of sides,
He plumbed for the Ivan juggernaut and we both simply deployed 12" in from respective long table edges.

Then began a a really fast flowing game (as Le Duc commented just as a mobile WW2 game should be) utilising fully the FOB card deck system.
I flung my 2 PzGr Regts forward with 3 move segments onto some central hills but this proved a mistake as they were simply blown to bits then flatten by the Ivans !
We were both cagey on my left flank as Tiger IIs faced JS IIs although one JS Coy was forced back with some hits (later rallied off).
The losses on the PzGr plus hits on my Panzer units soon saw my Morale expire and I was giving Morale Points to the Ivans.
Of course I then turned a Morale Card forcing a Force Morale check which I promptly failed ending the encounter.
All in all we played game to completion in just under 4 hours which is excellent considering both fairly new to rules, the FOB system is so straightforward to learn and play.

I had forgotten just how good FOB WW2 is for a large game (we had something like 55 Coys all told on the table).
In such a large game the abstraction of Heavy Weapons support, Flak, Engineering and Assest system simply works.

Lots of plans afoot for further use of these rules by us both whether they come to fruition is entirely another matter !!

A mix bunch of pics as the lighting changed from evening sunlight to artificial lighting, note i used 2 Spearhead stands per Company.

Ivan Tank Brigade

And its mate

Weak Pz Regt with PzGrs in support

Royal Tigers Bttn (2 Coys)

Overview of initial set up

PzGr wiped out on this hill

Sister Regt in trouble on adjacent hill.............

Royalty holds the flank as Pz Regt moves up

The disaster unfolds in the centre for the PzGr Regts

Ivan Airpower fails to damage the Kings

Panzers getting worst of exchange with Tank Brigade with Pak43s lending a hand

Royal Tigers and Josef Stalins go at it

Quantity has a quality all of its own...............................

And yet more quantity on show

Ivans retake hill from hapless PzGr

Support from Panzer Regt is insufficient to stem the tide

And so it went for other Panzer Regt.