Friday, 3 May 2013

Bolt Reaction

Here are some pix of a Bolt Action game played on May Day by members of the Peninsula Wargames Group. Nine players signed up for the game, and together we just about managed to muster eight commands of 500pts each (28mm WW2 is new to most of the club and we dont yet have the same depth of resources available in other scales). We played a modified version of the rulebook "Hold until Relieved" scenario with 2 objectives - the two hills to the the east (right in the second pic below) of the road intersection. The veteran Guards of the Workers and Peasants Red Army, motivated by the auspicious date, pressed home an attack against a scratch force of regular Heer infantry and veteran mechanised Waffen SS, supported by a solitary Hetzer.

Forces awaiting deployment
Table awaiting deployment
The first 3 turns of the game saw the small German squads in place on the objectives hard pressed to see off a determined assault, and by the end of Turn 3, the northern objective had changed hands, putting the German reserves approaching through broken ground in a tricky situation. Turn 4 saw the Germans lose six order dice and the second objective, and the weight of Soviet numbers was straining the defender's resolve, more so because their partisan units had made their appearance on the German's left flank. Soon after the start of Turn 5 we paused the game to enjoy a braai, and the convivial atmosphere of the meal made the combatants loathe to resume the conflict, and the Germans conceded the game.

Soviet commanders plot their deployment, with a German aerial reconnaissance team ensuring accurate documentation of enemy positions...
Defenders of the southern objective, with the MG42 team keeping a close eye on the advancing snack bowl.
Hard-pressed Waffen SS troops in a target-rich environment... but with 5 pins, and their Oberscharf├╝hrer KIA, how effective will their fire be? In the background a lend-lease Churchill attempts to avoid the attentions of a Hetzer and a Pak 40.
Heer reinforcements stick to cover as they move to support the southern objective...
I am not entirely convinced Bolt Action is as suited to large multiplayer games as the other Warlord titles - and with 8 players and almost 50 order dice - the game took a fair bit of time to approach a conclusion. The ruleset certainly has huge potential for smaller games, whether scenario-based encounters or list-based pick up games, and this is reflected in the growth of the game at the club - the number of players preparing forces for the game has doubled in recent weeks.

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