Huge battles

Dr Zaius

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In the back of the old Panzer Leader rules there are numerous OOBs for creating an entire division using multiple sets of PL counters. Years ago, I actually went to the trouble of setting one of these up, but never had an opportunity to play one.

Anyone ever use these OOBs or see one of these huge battles in action?
 

Blackcloud6

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Don:

I played in a multiplayer divisional PL game way back in college. It kind of bogged down as there didn't seem to be much tactical sense to the situation we set up and the guys on the defense got too bored with it. It looked cool though.

If you search the web, some guy made a big PL map of the Aachen area and played out a game on it. he took pictures; it looked neat. i think you could download the map. Have fun printing that.
 

Dr Zaius

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Yeah, that's what I thought would happen as well. For a battle of this scale, a much larger map would be needed in order to allow the battle to properly develop and get really interesting. Using six standard maps, as suggested in the rules, would merely result in two divisions waging a war of attrition along a long line, WWI-style. There wouldn't be much maneuver, and so the whole game would devolve into a dice-rolling contest.

I like big battles, but here is where I think board games reach their practical limits.
 

displacedjim

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Don,

A friend of mine from college and I used to get together both during school and on several occassions after graduation to play MegaBlitz scenarios. It wasn't really a serious attempt at a game as much as a fun time to release frustration. We would put about 15 or so boards together and play maybe ten or so turns over the course of a weekend. The part you might find useful is that we'd each play both the Germans and the Russians by devising symmetrical board arrangements and force compositions, with two SS Panzer Divisions (heavily reinforced) attacking two Guards Tank Corps and two rifle divisions, or something similar. On one half of the front I'd play the Germans and he'd play the Russians, and on the other half of the front I'd play the Russians and he'd play the Germans. That way both of us were playing simultaneously on our own halves of the board, and we both played both offense and defense. Of course in our case, we really weren't trying to "beat" the other guy, as actually our main objective was to see how many Russians we could kill in total. We even labeled Russian CP units with the names of college professors, politicians, and other public figures that we didn't like, and celebrated whenever we killed one.

[sigh!] Those we the good old days....
 

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I own several PB/PL games so we used to make large scenario's. We once did a Kursk campaign with like 12 boards and two divisions clashing, sort of battle PB is really suited for. Pretty intensive but a blast. Another one was the Soviet drive to cut off AGN in July 1944 near Tukums. Since I wanted a larger scale (beyond the possibilties of PB) I moved to OCS, it's called Baltic Gap and on preorder at MMP :D

Now, what we found is that the rule of command intervention, not interfering more than 2 levels below your command, counts for wargames. ASL is best played with a Company, PB best at battalion level. You can add one more level but then it becomes tedious micromanagement, overloading the player and taking ages to play a turn. Best way then is to add more players then.
 

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I've done this with 8 boards and it worked out alright, but does take a lot of time. Never did finish the whole game, but it was fun.

I use to use PL and PB to generate ASL scenarios.
 

Chaim628

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I've done this with 8 boards and it worked out alright, but does take a lot of time. Never did finish the whole game, but it was fun.

I use to use PL and PB to generate ASL scenarios.
Interesting ! So if some German tanks overrun a Russian Company you take the type of map and then have a like 5 German tanks attack 9 Russian squads ? Would be less interesting if you have a shootout of tanks at a large distances...

Sounds similar to what we do Cyrenaica 41. In our current GSASL Campaign we play a OCS DAK game and in the Combat Phase we use ASL to get the Combat result. It makes each mission much more interesting if it fits into a wider scheme.
 

MAKing

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Interesting ! So if some German tanks overrun a Russian Company you take the type of map and then have a like 5 German tanks attack 9 Russian squads ? Would be less interesting if you have a shootout of tanks at a large distances...

Sounds similar to what we do Cyrenaica 41. In our current GSASL Campaign we play a OCS DAK game and in the Combat Phase we use ASL to get the Combat result. It makes each mission much more interesting if it fits into a wider scheme.
I had figured it out that about 4 PB hexes equals one 33 hex ASL board in length and one PB hex width is about one ASL board width
 

Chaim628

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I had figured it out that about 4 PB hexes equals one 33 hex ASL board in length and one PB hex width is about one ASL board width
Something like that, maybe a bit less. I don't recall exactly but wasn't it like 250m/hex or roughly 6 times the scale of ASL ? But what ASL maps do you take if you have like 3x5 empty PB hexes ? Boards 33, 16, 26-31 as steppe ? ASL boards tend to me much more occupied, but OK can be solved.
I see more of an issue if a Panther unit fires at a T-34/85 ten PB hexes away. That would be like setting up 5 PzV 60+ hexes away at 10 T-34/85. Chances you have a LOS are nill (unless you use boards 26-31), but even if so, what is the challenge ? So you probablye would have to choose some interesting close quarter actions...
 

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I just concidered the PB hex a general rule for the hex as being the most dominent terrain type. Open hexes were just hexes that had mostly open ground hexes and so on. Usually having as setup the units within the board boundry. Units that were near by and within firing range could be units that enter on a certain turn. Artillery outside board boundry could be OBA.
 

Chaim628

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One more thing. How do you decide which battles to pick ? Not too few or too many I'd guess...
 

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One more thing. How do you decide which battles to pick ? Not too few or too many I'd guess...

It would be a very long PB or PL game if we did each combat situation.

So we would just do in ASL the ones that looked interesting and was when we felt like playing a ASL game.
 

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Hey all. New guy here; longtime wargamer/modeller. The group of guys I play with did a group play of the PL Macro game last summer; about six of us involved. It was a very interesting game; most of us hadn't played PL in years. The exercise in command and control was an interesting dynamic. We also found that the point values assigned for the OOBs were way out of whack. It costs the Germans far less in resources to purchase the really nasty groups than is does for the Allies. Certainly a throwback to the Cold War historiography that was in vogue in the '70s. Also the game time limit was unrealistic. Given the large forces involved, the relatively short time span forced the attacker (Allies) to run into prepared killing zones and allowed far too little time to use arty or smoke to suppress German positions. Just our experience; your mileage may vary.
 
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Interesting how many used something like this to generate ASL scenarios. I used larger games like Panzergruppe Guderian or even larger like Europa to create large scale scenarios for Miniatures games and Panzerbltiz/Leader. I am not Impeded by size or time so I perfer the larger scenarios.
 

leenco12

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Don:

I played in a multiplayer divisional PL game way back in college. It kind of bogged down as there didn't seem to be much tactical sense to the situation we set up and the guys on the defense got too bored with it. It looked cool though.

If you search the web, some guy made a big PL map of the Aachen area and played out a game on it. he took pictures; it looked neat. i think you could download the map. Have fun printing that.
Yeah, that's what I thought would happen as well. For a battle of this scale, a much larger map would be needed in order to allow the battle to properly develop and get really interesting. Using six standard maps, as suggested in the rules, would merely result in two divisions waging a war of attrition along a long line, WWI-style. There wouldn't be much maneuver, and so the whole game would devolve into a dice-rolling contest.

I like big battles, but here is where I think board games reach their practical limits.
 

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i have 4 complete sets of maps and 10 sets of counters. Yes, while I was in the Army we set up divisional sized fights. We even marked the unit ID's on the backs of the counters so the higher units were intended to fight together.

Good Hunting.

MR
 
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These games we played used an Excel sheet I made to handle combat. It makes the game go faster. The incremental movement creates greater simultaneity and keeps all players involved in the game at all times. Lots of fun.
 
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