At the club on Wednesday the 3rd of August there was a two player Flames of War session between Tony G and Neil; a multiplayer session of the co-op boardgame Thunderbirds and a multiplayer session of the new game Iron Cross. Let’s make our start with Neil’s report on the Flames of War session:
“Tony and I played early war Flames of War. I played a French Escadron de Combat and he played a German Lichte Panzerkompanie. The scenario was Hold the Line, played down the length of the table with Tony attacking. This showed a structural weakness in my list. With seven platoons (At least half off table.), I needed to defend two objectives with a possible two platoons held in ambush. Tony had two reconnaissance platoons and positioned one of the objectives as far forward as possible so I deployed an infantry platoon around it, my artillery behind a convenient hill and a platoon of three Somuas in ambush. My C-in-C covered the other objective.
Tony charged forward with Panzer IIIs, IIs, Is and half-track infantry to threaten my infantry platoon and sent a motorcycle recce platoon down a road which ran almost straight down the centre of the table to the second objective. His Stukas tried to bomb my C-in-C and, although the French air force failed to intercept, did no damage (Nothing was achieved by the dive bombers throughout the game except to force me to spread out.). On my first turn I deployed my Somua platoon just beyond the crest of a convenient hill and moved forward to machine gun the motorcyclists who disengaged and played no further significant part in the battle.
The next three turns consisted of German attempts to crush the gallant French infantry platoon while staying away from the Somuas. By the end the French infantry were down to 25% of their original strength but were still gallantly defending the objective against a platoon of infantry and two platoons of tanks. My Somuas who had moved forward to offer some support had managed to knock out one Panzer II, and with the arrival of a second Somua platoon from reserves the Germans conceded.”.
Owen made a rare visit to the club and was roped into the Thunderbirds game which he explains:
“Andy brought along Thunderbirds, so he, Garry, Luke and I had a go at saving the world from silly accidents, Martian invasions and that nasty Hood. As valiantly as we tried, we could not avoid defeat in the first game, keeping the Hood at bay but unable to deal with the unfolding regular disasters.
Luke had to go at that point, so we were able to get two more games in as three-handers and re-jigged the characters so that the ever-useful Virgil was out. And things were going well until Garry’s dice mojo failed us and he started rolling multiple Hoods, triggering defeat. We did a re-do of the last game and seemed to be ticking along well, before 10:00 pack-up rolled around, so we declared victory.
A lovely co-op game which is (Naturally for a Matt Leacock game.) like Pandemic in the way that it’s got a lot for the team to do and less time than you need, but the theme makes it a very immersive experience. My accent seemed to improve as I was playing Lady P…
Later in the Open Arms, Neil brought out Plague & Pestilence, where you try to build up your city population during a brief period of prosperity (While having to fend off attacks by the other players.) before the Black Death arrives and you desperately try to keep them alive. Last one standing wins, but the end tends to come very quickly. Martin won the first game, and Andy the second, while Garry delighted in extracting revenge for all slights against him.”.
Andy gave a brief report on the same game:”I enjoyed this week’s Thunderbirds even though we seemed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. Must play the Hood expansion some time soon.”.
Kev had this report in Iron Cross:
“Last night, Tony W, Martin, Bob and I tried Iron Cross for the first time. Martin and I were the Russians (Tank company.) and was attacking a small town with two bridges; defended by Bob and Tony’s Germans (Infantry company.). Martin and I had to capture two of the three objectives; a ruined building and two bridges. The bridges were either side of the ruined building, so we choose to concentrate on the ruined building and the left hand bridge.
I was tasked with a making a feint for the right hand bridge, before supporting Martin’s attack on the ruined building and left hand bridge. The plan sort of worked! On the left flank Martin won the long range duel with Bob, taking out two Panthers (Got the Panther’s armour value wrong.) and a PAK 40, but wasn’t close enough the claim the objectives; whilst on the right I was ambushed by Tony W’s hidden infantry, but only lost two SU-85s. Having weathered the initial German attack, weight of numbers should have forced the Germans to withdrawn, but we ran out of time.
Iron Cross is a newish game and has a very different feel to other WW2 games. The rules are “sophisticatedly simple” resulting in ‘playing the period not the rules’. The rules are based around the simple but subtle activation system and at only £12 I have already ordered a copy.”.
Plans are very fluid for next time but suffice to say we will be meeting and there will be games going on.