torstai 19. maaliskuuta 2015

Bolt Action Gameday at the club

We held a Bolt Action Gameday at my club the past weekend to give new players a chance to try the game and for older players to try out some themed scenarios. I had promised to put together a scenario pitting British Airborne against German defenders somewhere in France during 1944. In addition to that there were three other tables ready for players and we did have quite a nice showing of people new to the system and to our club as well.

More pictures can be found through the blogs of other members of the club; Juha (who supplied most of the Germans for my scenario) and Mika.

In my game the British were making a nighttime attack on a German HQ and Radar station in an attempt to destroy them and capture some important personnel. Loosely based on one of the scenarios in the Battleground Europe booklet. The Brits would start with a small force coming on the table and reinforcements being able to come in from any table edge, while the Germans would only have a small garrison in the area with reinforcements starting to come along one table edge when the attacking Brits were spotted.

It was quite fun to just Umpire a game for a change instead of playing. Nice to add some element of surprise and random events to battles and see how the players react. I wanted to create a Commando style game with loads of action and in the end it did prove to be quite a bloody battle with the result hanging in balance literally until the last throw of dice.

The Germans started with two Feldgendarmerie squads guarding the chateau and with an AA cannon positioned on it's roof to provide cover from marauding allied airplanes.

The Red Devils start their attack and move in with two squads towards the chateau with a third going for. However they seem to have been delayed while moving towards the objective as the sun starts to rise already on turn two leaving the units out in the open in clear sight of the AA cannon, which starts firing on the attackers. Brits got quite unlucky with the dice roll to see when the night would end with daylight coming at the earliest possible moment.

Eager to escape the fire from the German AA an airborne squad dashes forward to engage the defending Jerries in hand to hand combat. With the Feldgendarmerie being more accustomed to catching AWOL soldiers than to real fighting the results were quite clear. Another squad opens up on the AA killing the crew with some lucky shooting.

As the alarm has now been sounded a 6pdr is brought into action to guard the road leading to the Chateau and not a moment too soon as German reinforcements start arriving almost immediately after the alarm is sounded. Goes to show that good drill can pay off as the Germans show up at the earliest possible opportunity. The 6pdr fires a good shot at the first 251 coming in and promptly blowing it up forcing the occupants to dismount and take casualties.

One Airborne squad has made it's way towards the radar station and set up explosives ready to destroy the building. Some surrendering Germans are taken in for questioning.

Airborne reinforcements start rushing in towards the Chateau to secure it before any more Germans arrive. One Jeep gets shot to pieces by a Universal Carrier that shows up along the road behind the destroyed Hanomag.

Catching a glimpse of some of the VIP's occupying the Chateau one Red Devils squad rushes forward to capture them and bring them to justice.

With the radar station destroyed and the Brits starting to make their escape with their captives the Germans start to move up with haste to stop them. One Hanomag speeds up on the flank with the troops inside it dismounting ready to attack the Brits.

The remaining Feldgendarmerie squad tries to get to their captured superiors only to be destroyed by the defending airborne soldiers.

The dismounted grenadier squad moves in to secure the captives killing all the offending Brits. However danger is far from over with one more British squad moving in after dealing with the radar station. The Germans in turn are wiped out by the attacking Brits.

With the battle hanging on an edge Sgt. Steiner with his squad of veteran fighters rushes in to assault the Devils who are still recovering from the previous close combat. They are just in time and manage to free the captives yet again. At this point both forces were on the brink of destruction and the British player accepted defeat as his last infantry squad was destroyed.

This was a really enjoyable game to Umpire with loads of action going on at all times. Both sides had their share of bad luck with the British early attack being hampered with the coming day and quick German reinforcements and later with the Germans being unable to hit the Brits with their fire. British PIATs performed well destroying multiple vehicles despite usually needing 6s to hit. The game really hang in balance and had the last ditch German assault failed, the Red Devils would have been able to escape with their captives and take seize the day.

In addition to my game there was a Winter War game with Soviets attacking a Finnish defence line, a scenario based on the final battle in Saving Private Ryan pitting a mixed force of Rangers and Paras against SS and a Pacific battle with Japanese troops making an assault over a river against USMC defenders. Forgot to take pictures of the last scenario, but there are some pics of the amazing basing done on the Japs.

8 kommenttia:

  1. Great looking games, and the report of the first one is just wonderful...very nice job!

  2. Thanks for all the nice pics! Really enjoyed your AAR.

  3. Really nice reports there. Sounds like you had good fun!

    BTW... that Chateau turned out really nicely!

    1. Thanks Burkhard! The Chateau is actually not finished yet as it just seemed to absorb tons of paint when painting with a brush. But the only thing really missing is painting highlights on the window shutters so not much. And it actually does look quite good already so I might just skip it.

  4. Hi Samuli:
    Thanks for these great battle reports and photos. I quite enjoyed your account of the first battle and saw some pieces there I quite want for my own projects. Was that the radar station made by Sarissa? It looks great.
    How do you like the Bolt Action rules?
    Best, Michael

    1. Thanks Michael! All the MDF buildings on my table are from Sarissa. The radar station is really nice. Though it would probably benefit from added netting and being put on a better base than the one it comes on as standard.

      Bolt Action is quite nice for quick games and especially for demos. One turn and pretty much everyone gets the hang off the rules and things go smoothly. Plus it does tend to yield reasonably realistic outcomes so the 'feel' is there.