Saturday's game was terrific! Everyone came to the game with the successful experience of our last outing and it showed. The result was close and I felt it could have gone either way as both sides tried to use to use the strengths of their particular forces.
In this game we saw Mark use his recon to scout out table 3B before making the fateful decision to take the bridge and town quickly before the Germans sent in reserves. Jon's panzer grenadiers swept wide on table 1D, forcing Marks units on 2D to about face and then finally counter attack units on 1C instead! Indirect artillery would have prevented the Germans making this complex change of orders but the spotter was elsewhere. Russ counterattacked Phil's thrust down 1B and 1C with the Stugs preventing three battalions from crossing the river and then pulled off the survivors to fight again later. He then attacked Phils forces on 3A from 2B forcing Phil to make the difficult decision to reinforce his airfield attack with his last reserve on 2A. This gave Jon the opportunity to take 2A with his ever victorious panzer grenadiers which were only stopped by the RAF. All these encounters were a result of operational decisions that we don't get to make on a Thursday night game, and seldom on a normal Saturday game. Brilliant!
The slight criticism of overwhelming allied airpower may need addressing. I think I would drop the medium bomber from the RAF. However, Phil and Mark made the decision to concentrate against the German airfields, and so, did they reap the benefits of a good decision made earlier in the game? Could the Germans have used their AA units to decimate the RAF? In all honesty I don't know, but the essence and risk in these games is that the two sides are balanced but not in the same way.
In this game we saw the Germans risk giving up all the tables but concentrating their limited forces and then using mobility to counter attack - I think they nearly won. Again, the better command and control of the Germans was pitched against the superior numbers of the British and the forces felt balanced but for different reasons. I think I have the points ratios to roll this format out into other theatres and periods.
So what's next? We've decided to try a WW1 1916 trench offensive; 2x Allied corp v German reinforced division. Russ has a British Corp and I have a French Corp but does Phil want to use his British in an all Empire attack?
To follow we could do an Eastern front game. An Austrian and a German Corp attacking the Russians or 2x Russian Corp against either Germans or Austrians. We would need a division and a brigade of cavalry for each side before we can put this on as well aircraft, pontoons, balloons and railways. But we could use the exact same terrain boards for this game.
Lastly, we need to decide when we want to play it. Broughton is booked for the first weekend of every month - do we want to play in a months time or leave it again for another two months? Please let me know.