Normandy Summer Breeze III

In my previous posts on this topic, I have dealt with CoSims / board games. Another way to re-enact the Normandy battles comes from my older hobby, wargaming with minitures. I haven’t gotten around to painting figures or playing a tabletop battle lately. But I know there are many painted miniatures waiting patiently in their boxes to appear on my gaming table. I may even want to take advantage of my current Normandy euphoria to play a battle with them.

Late WW2 US Armor
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Normandy Summer Breeze II

Advanced Squad Leader is one of my favorite game systems. While most CoSim play at the operational level, ASL is my choice for tactical WW2 wargaming. ASL and ASLSK both cover the Battle of Normandy with many campaign packs and a plethora of scenarios. I remember one of the first ASL titles I ever bought was Paratrooper. This ASL Module 2 deals mainly with the battles of the 101st Airborne Division in Normandy. Since then, I added many more publications and scenarios to my portfolio.

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Normandy Summer Breeze

Now that it’s June, I’m toying with the idea of looking at my various games that deal with Operation Overlord and the subsequent Battle of Normandy in June to August 1944. It’s the 79th anniversary of the D-Day landings at Normandy. Not too special a date then, yet it gives me an opportunity for some interesting hours with different game systems and approaches to this campaign. And it’s a good excuse to watch the movie The Longest Day again.

The 2 1/2 hour movie on the D-Day landing
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Pacific War Storage

Safely storing the 2400 or so game pieces for GMT’s Pacific War presents quite a challenge. Although the box is 4 inches high, there is no way to store the game pieces in the box with the traditional trays I normally use. The mounted maps take up a lot of the space, as do the many rulebooks and play sheets. So I tried the new Cube4me trays, which are recommended specifically for this game. The price of 17.00 EUR is pretty high for 3 trays and a lid, but what the heck, it’s my hobby after all!

Normal and Cube4me trays
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Yearning for the Pacific

New games or new editions of classics often create hype in our hobby. Nothing less with Pacific War: The Struggle Against Japan, 1941-1945 released by GMT in 2022. It is highly rated on Boardgame Geek and my wargames friends like the game too. Consequently, I had to follow, not a little impressed by the game’s great cover art. I’m also fascinated by the chance to play out the course of war on a strategic level.

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Lost for Choice

As a wargamer, I’m always captivated by games that are new to the market or those that have only recently come to my attention. In particular, I’m interested in games that are either well suited for solo play or that promise face-to-face play that provides good flow in an acceptable time frame. I often choose games because they deal with a historical period that I am particularly interested in. I find it optimal if there are books and other media on the topic that allow me to understand the historical and cultural background. Even better, when I can visit a field of battle because of its proximity and good accessibility.

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FE II: Prussian Steamroller at Placenoit

On to the third scenario of Waterloo 1815: Fallen Eagles II, where the Prussians make their appearance. Each side receives two formations with numerous maneuver elements. The Prussians must attack resolutely, fully aware of their inferior quality. They risk losing many units in this attack. However, their essential task is to break through the French right flank in time to make an impact in the main battleThe French play a purely defensive role, delaying the Prussians and inflicting as many casualties as possible.

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FE II: D’Erlon’s Assault

In my attempt to relearn the rules of the Eagles of France, I start solo-playing all the scenarios. Waterloo 1815: Fallen Eagles II features four scenarios of varying scope and unit choices.

  • Scenario 1: Hougoumont, the Red Fortress
  • Scenario 2: D’Erlon’s Assault
  • Scenario 3: Prussian Steamroller at Placenoit
  • Scenario 4: The Battle of Mont Saint-Jean
The Battle of Waterloo, by William Sadler
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Fallen Eagles II

Drouot’s grand battery at La Haye Sainte

Do I need another Napoleonic game? Not really! On the other hand, the Hexasim Eagles of France series is one of my favorite game series. The rules are of medium complexity and therefore very playable. I like playing an entire Napoleonic battle in a single wargaming day and having fun doing it. Waterloo 1815: Fallen Eagles II does this brilliantly.

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