One weekend I was guest of my regular wargames buddy Björn. We tried out some new games and played two venerable ASL scenarios. All said we had a good time finally meeting face-to-face after the long abstinence forced on us by the COVID 19 pandemic. So what did we get our hands on?
After having received the new THE GREEN HELL OF INOR historical module, I now wanted to try one or two scenarios, prferabely one, that entirely fits on one of the two maps. Thus I chose INOR 1, that is situated in the south-west corner of the southern map, where the game plays in the small village of Inor itself.
The game plays on 15 May 1940, the Germans are pushing towards outflanking the northern end of the Maginot line. Some reconnaissance forces follow retreating French infantry units and now are in the position to take Inor in a coup de main.
The newest product from LE FRANC TIREUR has just arrived on my table: THE GREEN HELL OF INOR. This is a meaty portfolio with 16 scenarios and 3 Campaign Games. Who thinks he has not jet got sufficient French counters will be happy to receive two counter sheets with additional units. Historical Background and the Campaign Game Rule Book are produced in excellent quality.
When I play wargames I regularly read books on the subject, view movies, and do some background research. For Dark Summer only the first few turns are well covered by the many publications on D-Day. One interesting source I came across recently is the Imperial War Museum’s website with several articles on D-Day and Normandy. The German Response to D-Day, What Happened After D-Day, and Tactics and the Cost of Victory in Normandy are but a few such articles that will give you more insight into this campaign.
Another book I read some time ago and that I much recommend is If You Survive(George Wilson) written from the perspective of a junior infantry officer that took part from the Saint-Lô breakthrough July 1944 to the assault on the Siegfriedlinie February 1945.
Dark Summeris the latest addition to my wargames library. I consider it one of the COSIMs for casual gaming as the rules are few with little crome and thus fairly easy to learn. Moreover the extended example of play is an excellent starter to understand the rules mechanics. Therefore I am confident that face to face it should produce an outcome in a few hours of enjoyable game time. The chit pull system off course makes it most suitable for solo play.
So off I go and replay the Battle for Normandy from D-Day to the Allied breakout towards Brittany and the final exploytation phase over the Saine river and to the East of France.
I only seldom play maritime wargames. This one though made me curious as there are quite a few play through videos on the internet. The game concept seems to offer a narrative experience with few tactical decisions to take. Anyway, the U-Boat warfare was an important element of German strategy in both world wars. Everybody probabely knows the film DAS BOOT, several U-Boot captains are legends. So why not give it a go?
For my first game I chose U28, a Type VIIA U-Boot, and membetr of the 2nd U-Bootflotille. Its wartime Kommandant was Kapitänleutnant Günther Kuhnke, so he is going to be our hero in this naval campaign.
In my second play of the Fall Blau scenario I played both opposing sides more aggressive. I reasoned the German Army Groop Command would want to repeat the stunning successes of 1941 encirceling and destroying large numbers of Sovjet units. Therefore I let the attack with little regard to own losses. The Sovjet basically fight a delaying battle, but do get ample units to stage some counter attacks.
One of my newest aquisitons in wargames is Stalingrad ’42. I played the Case Blue scenario to get to know the game mechanics. All in all they are quite familiar to me, similar to Ukraine ’43 and Holland ’44 with minor differences and game specific rules. I like the medium complexity of the rules as they allow for a fluid fast paced game. I think this particular scenario could be played in an eveneing when you are somewhat familiar with the rules. The campaign game probabely takes an entire weekend to complete.
For GT3 the DPRK ground forces are to break through all along the DMZ and to finally initiate the encirclement of Seoul. The main effort will be in the KPA II and V Corps area. DPRK will introduce KPA 108th and 425th Mechanized Corps of the second strategic echelon with the mission to gain the line Pyeongtaek to Wonju.