Sunday, March 1, 2009

Oh the woes of commanding troops ...

Hello fellow troops !

I mentioned in my last post about having additional pictures from my first battles in Flames of War. I figured I would save the most interesting thoughts and concerns and post them under "What I have learned" mile posts (blog tags).

My first command in battle went as good as I thought it would. The dice were against me most of the time; although that is something a wargamer seems to say all the time. If you could have seen Steve's face at times after my roles of the dice you would laugh. He was a good sport about and I had to chuckle myself. We would have awesome ROF rolls and then produce nothing but a glancing shot off the German tanks. I swear I could hear German tankers laughing at me.

But I did learn how positioning and moving tanks in general could turn the next phase into a shooting gallery. My first lesson was never, never, NEVER use double time across open fields with an enemy platoon is gonna be in striking distance. I thought maybe I could get the platoon of Crusaders within a flanking shot of the Panzers. If there is any good out of the situation I was able to get the 3 tanks across 36" without rolling a 1, which would have broken them down for the rest of the game. The bad news is the Panzers got double ROF when attacking. This resulted in approximately 20 shots fired with 15 of them landing a punch. I don't need to explain the results to any gamer. I think the picture will explain ...

Another thing I learned was approaching villages. One turn you think your covered and the next turn you in some German tanker's sight for a flank shot. These Shermans were approaching the village in the middle of the map. The German tank column turned and got all 3 Shermans in one round of shooting. I must admit my rolling of dice seemed to lend a hand to the Sherman's downfall.

Rolling dice seemed something that anyone could have a decent hand at. I learned that I didn't have the knack yet. "1" rolled numerous times and made me feel my troops were too busy looking at pinups and not practicing shooting. I am sure that any wargamer will agree that the dreaded "1" seems to show up in favor of the opponent every time.

Not giving up is another thing learned my first time out. A group of Grants using high ground and excellent firepower took out the platoon that killed the Shermans. Excellent shooting characteristics of the Grants along with British modifiers worked magic on splitting open German armor. As you can see by this photo ...

As Steve mentioned in these battles ... FOW is like Chess. Learning the basics is easy but mastering all the moves takes a lifetime. I can't remember the exact phrase but that was close and a good phrase.

I hope to add more to this mile post (blog tag) as my battles and experience happens.

Till then .... enjoy the blog and feel free to leave comments



  1. Joe,

    Nice write up and photos. I know Steven (he linked in your blog from his FOW forum post ;) ), you had a good teacher and opponent.

    And as for rolling an inordinate number of 1s, I feel your pain. In another game system (Full Thrust) I seem to have achieved legend status amongst the GZG community for being able to roll repeated 1s. :-D


  2. Thanks Indy for letting me know I am not the only one to feel that way ! lol

    Thanks for the kind words .... stop by often I am having a blast getting my 327th GIR up and running. I plan to have AAR's often too ...

    Be safe