So what scenarios have you played Recently?

Doug Leslie

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Played Scenario 115 "Huns of Steel" against Marc Hanna. This is a scenario from Armies of Oblivion which survived unaltered in the second edition. Like most of the AOO scenarios, it is a very meaty effort which took a long time to play through (and we didn't get past Russian Turn 4!). Basically, a powerful combined arms Hungarian force has the task of dislodging Russians from two separate victory areas on the banks of a river. It was my turn to defend and, given the slightly pro-Russian record, I agreed to give the Hungarians the balance comprising an extra Nimrod which, for those who don't know, is an OT tin can armed with a not too shabby 40L gun. The western victory area is mostly grain and I set up two platoons of conscripts to dig foxholes under the watchful gun of a Commissar. They were backed up by two squads manning light mortars with woods hexes bore sighted to the north of the grain. A 76L ART gun set up in an overwatch position south of the river. A handful of squads screened the approaches to the grain while wire was set up to impede movement through woods and buildings. The best troops set up in the walled enclosure of board 43. The Hungarians approached mounted on horses and motor cycles with armour support. The first three turns were a bit of a phoney war as the attackers approached while the conscripts frantically dug in to await the Hungarian onslaught. On turn 4 the armour arrived at the grain with some infantry support and charged towards the defenders who were now backed up by a mixed Lend Lease force comprised of Stuarts and Valentines. Unfortunately for the Hungarians they lost one of their best tanks to a sniper recall and another bogged on wire and was unable to join the attack. The defenders destroyed/immobilized/shocked all but two of those that did enter the grain. To the east, a Stuart did a "dance of death" with a Mark IV before putting an AP round through its turret from point blank range, at which point Marc had had enough and conceded.
This is a tough scenario for the Hungarians and a Russian defence that is set well back is difficult to breach.
 
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boylermaker

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Just played my first real stinker out of Poland In Flames: BFP-122 At Sword Point. Looking at ROAR, I realized that everybody else is smarter than me, took one look at the card, and skipped it, because there are only four playings, almost the lowest from PiF. Just a completely unfun scenario design (the German has to set up mounted in trucks in a shooting gallery and spend the first four turns just getting blown up).

It might be balanced--ROAR has it 3-1 in favor of the Germans, and in our game it was completely lopsided in favor of the Poles, but this could be the most perfectly balanced scenario ever made and I would tell you to give it a hard pass.

I'm very sympathetic to the designers of these kinds of scenarios. I understand the vision in their heads, and that vision is really cool: the ambush scenario where a big unit gets decimated and the handful of survivors must regroup and hold out against overwhelming odds until the cavalry come. That sounds like an amazing scenario, but the problem is that the ambush part simply isn't fun gameplay. It is very unfun to sit there and watch dozens and dozens of CVP go to the bin with absolutely nothing you can do about it, even when you understand that this is how the scenario is "supposed" to play out. It also adds a level of diceyness that isn't very fun either: presumably the 3 German victors just had trucks that survived long enough to unload their infantry, and I didn't.

So, anyway, if you want to design this kind of scenario, just start with the ambush having already happened. That's all you need to do!
 

Gunner Scott

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Hi all-

Bob came by today and we attempted ToT 42 Thunderbolts with Bob as the Germans and me as the Americans. Ya I know its unbalanced but we wanted to try it again and see if the Americans could pull out a victory. Well sadly there seems to be no way of that happening. The terrain is too restrictive and forces the Americans to attack along the right flank, through Barricades, minefields and OBA. In addition the time needed for the Americans to overcome such obstacles just does not seem to be enough. Veery fun scenario but it favors the Germans heavily.
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wrongway149

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So, anyway, if you want to design this kind of scenario, just start with the ambush having already happened. That's all you need to do!
I usually say the same thing about OBA. Artillery is over-- it's the infantry's turn.

(FWIW, I have been chewing on a Korean War 'ambush; scenario. Yes. it's challenging. LIke 'I need to stop playing ASL for a few months and go play some Euros to get some other neurons firing to create a chain reaction and push some new ideas back to the ASL neurons- but I have to let them fire feely and not force the muse' level of challenging.)
 
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Gunner Scott

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Huh? No 2 page scenario cards with paragraphs of SSR's and VC's? Say it aint so lol.

I usually say the same thing about OBA. Artillery is over' it's the infantry's turn.

(FWIW, I have been chewing on Korean War 'ambush scenario. Yes. it's challenging. LIke 'I need to stop playing ASL for a few months and go play some Euros to get some other neurons firing to create a chain reaction and push some new ideas back to the ASL neurons- but I have to let them fire feely and not force the muse' level of challenging.)
 

Paul John

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N8 and I got together to play some TotR this past weekend. We started with the Death of Charlemagne, which seems super interesting given the setup and constant trickle of reinforcements. I played the Russians and set up too conservatively I think. He kept me on my back heel and my attacks didn't work out well at all. It played a little flat and the Russians got slapped around pretty well. I conceded after turn 3 (of 5). That said, I think it has replay and I want to try it again.
We then played Rails to Perdition, which is a fun one given the crappy quality of the majority of troops on both sides, although the Romanians are better off for sure. The Axis Guns were mostly not super useful, but the Romanian infantry were rolling up the Hungarians. The Romanians are pretty potent, but have a lot to do, so have to really move fast. N8 was frustrated with some setup oversights and the 1,1 effect roll I got on an 81* hit broke his personal morale and he conceded. I thought is was still a game, but my chances looked good. This one was more fun and also has a fair number of options. Pay attention to setups to force the Romanians to attack all three of the VC areas though.
Next up was Death Boxes. This one was a blast, with the Hungarian police coming at the Russians in 4 armored FIATs (I forgot which Italian tankette, but super cheeseball for '45). I played the Russians and bought 3 ATRs to give my 527s 6FP and to take on the tanks. Great luck on the latter as 2 were knocked out and 2 shocked by turn 2. Sadly they recovered, but I shocked one again and the other broke its MA in turn 4. We are still at R4 with it potentially going either way, but I had to fly home so now we wait for VASL to finish (praying hands emoji).
Overall, great looking pack and very fun. These are hard to manage FtF with all the HIP stuff. VASL will help a lot! Looking forward to more soon.
 

fenyan

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Our group also played some Twilight of the Reich this weekend. It is looking to have a lot of good scenarios.
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ASL 304 The Rat House
This offering from Twilight of the Reich is set in Berlin 1945 and the French SS Charlemagne and other ad-hoc forces: 2 each of 658s, 548s, 447s, and 5 half-squads with the Hitler Youth with automatic first PF availability. A King Tiger and two StuGs support but will recall one-by-one starting on Turn 4 (of 6.5). Turn 3, a hero leads a platoon from the east.

The Russians attack from the south with three elite and 1st line platoons, followed by about the same amount on turn 2. They are well-led, supporting by five AFVs.

The map shows three linear rows of stone buildings running north-south, mostly 2-story with black bars here and there. The Russians sent two elite platoons along the east edge, with the weaker 527s probing the center row. Tanks were spread out in the back in contingency for a Tiger attack, though the SU and a T-34/85 would cautiously support the attack on the east flank.

The victory conditions interrelate with each other well, in that it was very possible to pivot from one to the other if your attack plans weren’t working out. The Germans win if they get 19 CVP (AFVs only count for 2), the Russians win if they acheive 20 CVP, or control 6 hexes on the north edge, or control 13 locations in buildings E12/E13.

The reinforcements blocked the Russian advance on the east side, so they diverted their attention to the E12/E13 buildings, with 527 platoons in the center and the west. The German sniper killed two leaders and recalled a T-34/85. After the first was repulsed, a second Russian advance into the buildings gained a foothold. Half-squads HIP’d upstairs made gaining control of upper locations problematic, and the Russians barely had enough time to access other stairwells to grab 14 locations. Adding to the tension was the fact that the Russians were at 18 CVP and another K result would result in a German win. We both agreed it was an interesting, very fun scenario and would play again. DCs thrown back and forth, flamethrower flaming out, agonizing decisions for the Germans on whether to fire or pull back.

Next to us at the same large table, 3 of our colleagues were playing another Twilight scenario, Four Stars of Valor, split between the Germans/Americans/British and they were enjoying it quite a bit. One of them is a fan of Cirillo/Deller scenarios and said the scenarios are usually “dialed in very well.” They didn’t finish but having gotten to Turn 5 (of 6.5) it was still anyone’s game. They said they had a blast with it, and also looked forward to playing again.
 

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Saturday I playtested a small PTO DASL gem with Woke Dave at our SoCal ASL gameday. Jarheads vs Japs is not my favorite type of scenario but it is DASL so it was awesome. It is slated to be o e of two DASL scenarios in the upcoming/next SoCal Melee pack. With only five turns to get more CVP than the Japs, the jarheads have to be playing very Schwerpunkt (I.e. fast). Since the Japs get VP for occupying the huts they also need to clear those. First playing the Marines took it on the chin as I started kindling the huts, my sniper was hot and they couldn’t pass a MC. It went quickly enough we made some adjustments (kindling NA, 2nd line Japs lax) and played again. Japs won again with each of us ending with a pair of live squads and a leader at the end. My attack went to hell when a 9-0 goes berserk (his squad did not) and charged my 9-2, MMG and Raider squad. I wounded him twice but couldn’t kill him. So of course he killed me in HTH CC at 1-6 down one! We finished it out but when the HIPsters popped out of bamboo to grab back some huts the CVP count wasn't even close. After the two playings and two decisive Jap wins, we made another tweak and hopefully that will dial it in with the next playing.
 

william.stoppel

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Monday Dan and I finished up J245 Factory Fodder. An interesting scenario with a lot of replayability due to the Americans setting up two HIP squad equivalents (and a leader and SW) up forward and the rest well behind. The back Americans have to move into and occupy the board 10 village and hold on before the SS tsunami arrives. The VC have the Germans needing to grab 5 of 6 small factories and control 3 of 4 ground level hexes in the remaining multi hex bldg on board 10. The SS force is impressive starting with 12 elite sqds a pair of MK IVs and a mortar track (and a 9-2 with HMG/MMG. They get reinforcements in turn 2 with a pair of panthers, 3 h/ts and 2.5 more 6-5-8s. Initially it looks like a walkover except the SS have to cross the stream only at bridges and there is ground snow in effect. Those channelize the attack and remove rod rate to slow them down. Couple that with the HIP Ami and it slows a bit more. Dan setup a small force in the North (9-2/HMG and 1.5 sqds). The rest were in the south to use the normal bridge and all three footbridges to get across the stream. He got three smoke rounds down from his armor and moved the infantry across. The HIP good guys really won this for my Ami. A HIP 3-4-6 in a foxhole was lucky to be a hex away from two footbridges. Once he popped out he laid residual before breaking under advance fire. Now Dan continued to shoot him to try and kill him without invoking NQ. Of course he went berserk and was jumped in CC by 1.5 CX squads. Miraculously this CC went for 4 iterations before he died. MOHs all around for them. That out the timeline behind and couple with my hottest sniper in years 3 hot snipers in 4 tries to recall a MK IV and the mortar track and break a squad doomed Dan and I got the win. But just for style points my forward 6-6-7 led by freshly minted SGT Curry jumped and killed a SS sqd in CC even though he was surrounded by a half dozen squads and two tanks. He valiantly died along with his men when Dan rolled a 1KIA and I rolled a pair of 3s. The bad with the good!
 

Gunner Scott

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Who is woke dave?

Saturday I playtested a small PTO DASL gem with Woke Dave at our SoCal ASL gameday. Jarheads vs Japs is not my favorite type of scenario but it is DASL so it was awesome. It is slated to be o e of two DASL scenarios in the upcoming/next SoCal Melee pack. With only five turns to get more CVP than the Japs, the jarheads have to be playing very Schwerpunkt (I.e. fast). Since the Japs get VP for occupying the huts they also need to clear those. First playing the Marines took it on the chin as I started kindling the huts, my sniper was hot and they couldn’t pass a MC. It went quickly enough we made some adjustments (kindling NA, 2nd line Japs lax) and played again. Japs won again with each of us ending with a pair of live squads and a leader at the end. My attack went to hell when a 9-0 goes berserk (his squad did not) and charged my 9-2, MMG and Raider squad. I wounded him twice but couldn’t kill him. So of course he killed me in HTH CC at 1-6 down one! We finished it out but when the HIPsters popped out of bamboo to grab back some huts the CVP count wasn't even close. After the two playings and two decisive Jap wins, we made another tweak and hopefully that will dial it in with the next playing.
 

Houlie

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Finished up AP135 Fuller’s Folly recently as the attacking Americans. There has been good chatter on this scenario, so will dispense with reviewing the scenario card, OB, etc. Bottom line: Americans have to make pace to get more GO VP on Level 2 VC hill hexes than the German. I’ll let a few pics tell the story.

Initial Setup and Launch
Came in on the German left half of the board spread out. I felt attacking from the right half would allow the Germans to delay over a longer distance. Thus, not much of an option IMO.
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End of Turn 3
Halfway through. OK/Decent progress for the American, but zero margin for any delay. Had to remember the mortars were out there somewhere. Since the mortar sight lines are poor, I figured they would be stashed atop the VC hill. They were.

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Final Outcome
A very tight ending. I was able to rally DMed 8-1, 546, 236 in the top of turn 6 to help participate in the final advance onto the hill. They acted as additional targets to soak up fire. Very close, but the end, the Americans had the VP numbers for the win. Tight, very balanced, challenging scenario. Well done.

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wrongway149

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Finished up AP135 Fuller’s Folly recently as the attacking Americans. There has been good chatter on this scenario, so will dispense with reviewing the scenario card, OB, etc. Bottom line: Americans have to make pace to get more GO VP on Level 2 VC hill hexes than the German. I’ll let a few pics tell the story.

Final Outcome
A very tight ending. I was able to rally DMed 8-1, 546, 236 in the top of turn 6 to help participate in the final advance onto the hill. They acted as additional targets to soak up fire. Very close, but the end, the Americans had the VP numbers for the win. Tight, very balanced, challenging scenario. Well done.

View attachment 28703
But the big question -- As the US Army GIs from this 2nd Infantry Regiment, did you feel like saying: "These Springfields suck! Why can't we have M1 Garands like the rest of the fucking Army? That Fuller is an A-Hole!!"
 

chris_olden

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Half way through Turn 4, of the playtest.
The Russians are their own worst enemy;
every fire attack in the DFPh cowered, and
the one hit a T-34 got with APCR was a Crit, followed by a dud. And not a single squad passed MC’s during the German AFPh.
Good thing the Germans are running out of time.

My only solace was the bottle of 15 year old Balcones single malt that showed up tonight.
 
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