Of course I didn't get any gaming in on Thanksgiving, but I also didn't get any in on "Black Friday." So I made up for it by getting three games in on Saturday! I'd been playing my FFL with No End In Sight, but I'd gotten a wild hair to mess with Ivan's 'other' rules, Five Men In Normandy, and so I set out to playtest it. Long story short, I like it a lot. Really all I did was substitute teams in for individual men (rifle squads, machine gun and mortar teams), and mess with the vehicle rules a little bit. A great time, with quick battles (1 hour, 45 minutes, and 1 hour 35 minutes, respectively).
About the forces I chose: I wanted to use troops I hadn't used before, but was limited as, of the guys I haven't used before, many times they haven't been used is because I haven't finished them. I wanted to go with 'blitzkrieg' era Germans, but hadn't done anything but prime the vehicles, same with my early Barbarossa Soviets. Then my mind drifted to my Indo-China forces, which are finished, but I wanted to use vehicles, so that didn't work. Then I thought about my forces for North Africa, but there was still a problem: my Afrika Korps forces are finished, but I hadn't finished up my 8th Army vehicles and guns... So I said hell with it, and used my Afrika Korps forces against 8th Army forces set in Italy, with some vehicles borrowed form my Late War NW Europe troops. So, it may look a bit strange having troops with desert bases and the odd vehicle with green basing, on a green mat, but kiss my butt 'cause I had fun ;) And someday I'll finish up my 8 million different projects...
It's Sunday now and I'm writing again. I played two more games (50 and 55 minutes respectively), for a total of a five-fight 'operation' which, I'm proud to say, the Brits pulled off brilliantly. Okay, maybe not brilliantly, but they won, and it was a lot of fun! And, at least as importantly, the rules worked like a champ. Aside from modifying the rules, I also drew up a set of scenarios (meeting engagement, combat patrol, hasty attack, prepared attack, hasty defense, prepared defense, counterattack, enemy counterattack, encirclement, and breakout) with accompanying force structures, and I was very happy with those as well.
As a preview, the five-game Operation started out with a Brit Hasty Attack, followed by a successful German Counterattack, which led to an Encirclement/Breakout in which the Brits escaped the noose, followed by a successful Brit Counterattack that culminated in a successful Brit attack on prepared defenses (Prepared Attack) which broke the German line! Every fight was close, and most of them came down to a single decision point/event.
So, let's get to it! Again, somewhere in Italy in late 1943, the Brits are on the move north, with a British rifle company launching a hasty attack on German positions.
And all is set; with a flare and a whistle, the mortar stonk lifts and Captain Penny leads his men forward.
On the Brit left, Sgt Belmont's squad rallied.
It is at this point that I realize I've sort of been screwing up activations: on 'normal' turns I've been allowing two units to activate, when I had decided I would go with 1 activation per three units, which would have put the Brits at 3 and the Germans at 2 at the beginning. Now, after both sides sustaining casualties, the Brits should be at 2 and the Germans at 1. In any case, I played 2 activations for the remainder of this game, as well as games 2-4, only going 'big' in game 5.
So the German CO moved to the ATG and rallied off their pin (I let units rallied by the CO, as opposed to those that rallied themselves, act during the turn they rallied/recovered). They then promptly sent a 50mm armor-piercing round through the Honey, brewing it up...
The German 1st Squad (top center with red bead) tries to rally, but only manages a flinch (meaning he's 'upgraded' from cowering to pinned, but is still at disadvantage and can't move).
So, first game is in the books. This one was the easiest fight of all them, but still wasn't exactly a walkover. It felt to me like the decision point of this game was here near the end, when the Brits only had two squads in the vanguard, but the German squad managed only a knockdown and the ATG totally missed. This allowed the Brits to recover and close the distance.
I've got four more fights to write up, I'll post them as soon as I can.