DN4: Chateau de Meez

boylermaker

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@ppalma3010 and I played another one from the Dinant module, which we've been enjoying so far. This one takes place in a small section of the board, all on the French side of the river. A rather paltry group of French infantry has to defend a small cluster of buildings against a combined-arms force of Germans. Germans enjoy a 2:1 advantage in infantry, three unopposed tanks (albeit PzII's), brittle opponents (French ELR=2) and a lot of time (7.5 turns). The French advantages are an embarrassment of SW such that almost every French squad will have a chance at killing the German tanks, at least from the side, 2 HIP SE and an HIP gun, and the fact that most of the German forces are on the wrong side of an escarpment.

Get out the rulebook for this one, boys, because the Germans are probably going to be doing some climbing. Once the rulebook is out, you will then discover that nobody knows how to string LOS to climbing units, so be ready to discuss that with your opponent. In retrospect, I realize I should have just asked Carl and the gang what the interpretation was during playtesting, but it didn't occur to me until later. Fortunately, it didn't come up, perhaps because I didn't do all that much climbing as the Germans.

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The two squads in the north, with a 9-1 leader, would push up to the roadblock and start clearing it so that the tanks could swing up to level four (salmon) eventually. Two more squads and a leader would head for the steep trail up the cliff face in FF35/36. The remaining infantry would climb the GG27-29 cliffs under the direction (and +1 morale bonus) of Rommel, while the tanks scoured the clifftops with covering fire. The 8-1 would direct machine gun fire to cover the climbers or roadblock clearers as necessary.

On turn 2, six more German squads come in along the north edge, these would sweep the level 3 woods for hidden guns before pushing on the victory buildings from the north.

In general, this was a good plan, but I can't recommend the specifics, since we didn't realize until my climbers were halfway up that the armor can't actually elevate their guns far enough to cover those clifftops. You would probably want to target FF29-32 for climbing instead.

Despite that SNAFU, things went OK for the Germans.
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To the south, my two squads had forced their way up the steep path and were threatening the whole French right. In the center, my lads had climbed the first half unmolested, although a crowd of French ??s had just arrived to start shooting at them. We had just realized here that the tanks were useless, so they are about to swing north; work on clearing the roadblock continues apace; it would be cleared next turn.

Along the far north, a German stack had discovered the French AT gun the hard way, when its crew's small arms killed a halfsquad and broke two more squads. Still, it was discovered, and the crew had to skedaddle, and there were still plenty of good order units to head to the next treeline, which I was hoping was held by dummies.

The bad news was that none of them were dummies, and the German turn 3 would see an awful lot of units killed or broken trying to cross that open ground. This stalled the attack for a turn or two, but eventually the ex-roadblock-clearers and kill stack were able to capture the CC23 area and flank the French defenders in that area.

The good news was that the missing dummies were mostly along the hilltops. Good news because there was only a squad or two to shoot at my climbers: if climbers break, they die. No casualty-reduction, just instakilled. Even a squad and a half were enough to deal heavy casualties to the climbers, but 2-3 squads still made it to the top in one piece.

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By the end of turn 5, the Germans were in pretty good shape. Their whole force was on top of the escarpment, and at this point their weight of numbers and the low French ELR was beginning to tell. My tanks never bogged, and would make it into the little village a few turns later, in time to blast a few Frenchies and play hell with what rout paths remained. With all of the buildings either single-hex or a factory, there were few places for the French to hide, and a good outlook became a sure thing when I rolled nothing above a 6 in the last two turns. Victory to the Germans.

This is a cool scenario, and I still find the map remarkably pretty! I give it a strong recommendation.
 

Carln0130

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<<In retrospect, I realize I should have just asked Carl and the gang what the interpretation was during playtesting, but it didn't occur to me until later. >>

B11.42 is your answer. The climber point the arrow of the climb counter to one of the two vertexes of the hexside he is climbing. That is where the shot is directed to.
 

Faded 8-1

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Hazardous Movement indeed.

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Faded 8-1

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Great AAR. I have the new CdG on order but delayed for restocking (of that or other items in my order, not sure which).

Not many scenarios give the chance to use the climbing rules. I've seen them used in The Taking of Takrouna (IIRC).
 

boylermaker

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<<In retrospect, I realize I should have just asked Carl and the gang what the interpretation was during playtesting, but it didn't occur to me until later. >>

B11.42 is your answer. The climber point the arrow of the climb counter to one of the two vertexes of the hexside he is climbing. That is where the shot is directed to.
That is exactly the problem. By itself it makes sense, but what confuses me is the additional bit: "A LOS may not be drawn to a Climbing unit through the cliff hexside it is Climbing unless the firer is occupying a hex formed by that cliff hexside".

Try drawing a LOS to a Climbing unit that goes "through" the cliff hexside it is Climbing. It can't be done. Here is a dumb, but hopefully illustrative example:
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I only drew 180 degrees worth of LOSs for clarity, but even if you drew all of them, none would go "through" the hexside. You could make the argument that a LOS from O7, since it goes exactly along the cliff hexside, should count as going "through" it, and I'd be OK with that interpretation, but it wasn't one that people seemed to favor when I asked the question. And I refuse to believe that the intent of that sentence is only to bar the single LOS from O7, because if it were, they would never have phrased it like that.

Alternatively, you could argue that "meeting a hexside at its endpoint" counts as going "through" it, but then every LOS is blocked except those from O8 and P7. Again, if that was actually the intent of the authors, they would never have phrased it that way. They would have just said that only units in those two hexes could draw LOS to climbers.
 

Carln0130

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What that means to me is that to shoot him through the cliff hex and through the hexside he is climbing up is illegal unless you occupy the cliff hex whose hex he is climbing. Also, shots you have there that do not go through that cliff hexside are perfectly legal, so long as no other LOS blocks apply.

I believe it may be in how you are reading it. For instance, in your example, Q9 sees that vertices as does
 

Carln0130

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P8 and P9 as depicted. Also the one LOS "off board" above Q8. They are not tracing through the cliff hex to the vertice.
 

Spencer Armstrong

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This is a fun scenario. Honus and I played it and I had some good luck at key moments with the French to just hold onto Z29 at the end for a win. Lots of interesting rules and interesting choices for both players. Second your recommendation.
 

boylermaker

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What that means to me is that to shoot him through the cliff hex and through the hexside he is climbing up is illegal unless you occupy the cliff hex whose hex he is climbing.
Sorry to be obtuse about this, Carl, but could you give me an example of a LOS that is illegal because it goes "through the cliff hex and through the hexside he is climbing"? I just don't see how a LOS can cross a hexside when B11.42 requires you to draw all LOS to a vertex of that hexside, but maybe if you can give an example I'll start seeing it.
 

klasmalmstrom

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I think the usage of "through" is a bit unfortunate

I think the intention is that LOS is blocked if the LOS enters the vertex from anywhere between the red and the blue line below (unless the firer is in N4). Not 100% sure the red LOS is ok.

14259
 

Carln0130

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I think the usage of "through" is a bit unfortunate

I think the intention is that LOS is blocked if the LOS enters the vertex from anywhere between the red and the blue line below (unless the firer is in N4). Not 100% sure the red LOS is ok.

View attachment 14259
I would further say you can see him climb from O3. P4 and P3, O4 and therefore shoot them. What I was saying before is you can't shoot through the cliff hex to the vertex and hit the climbers unless IN the cliff hex basically.
Klas, I believe the down the hexside shots are good, but I know that gets kicked around a lot.
 

boylermaker

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I think the usage of "through" is a bit unfortunate

I think the intention is that LOS is blocked if the LOS enters the vertex from anywhere between the red and the blue line below (unless the firer is in N4). Not 100% sure the red LOS is ok.

View attachment 14259
That seems like a reasonable guess! I wouldn't mind playing that way. Klas, would you say the same thing if there wasn't a cliffside in N3/N4? Would you expand the no-shoot-zone to 240 degrees if you were trying to climb N4/N5/O5, then?

The problem is that RAW there is nothing that distinguishes the M4-to-N3/N4/O4 LOS from an M5-to-N3/N4/O4. The more this gets kicked around, the more I think that this section is in serious need of errata, not just a Perry Sez.
 

boylermaker

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Also, I should say: don't let my rules quibbles scare you off from the scenario. Just pick an interpretation you like with your opponent and have fun.
 
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