Wargames on your table - July 2020
Sam C
United States
Urbana
Illinois
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Soli Deo Gloria!
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I'm hitting serious quarantine fatigue in central Illinois. Fortunately, I received a new box full of Imperial Struggle to distract me from all the other things I could be doing.

What about you? What explosively piercing sharp-edged mayhem are you committing? Old or new, virtual too, tell us what you're playing.

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Five shiny Geekgold to the first commenter to identify this July battle!

From gallery of spartax


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Rule Books on Your Table

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European Wargame Chain of Generosity

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1. Board Game: Imperial Struggle [Average Rating:8.38 Overall Rank:942]
Board Game: Imperial Struggle
Sam C
United States
Urbana
Illinois
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Microbadge: "I'm givin' her all I can, Captain!" - Chief Engineer Montgomery Scott (Scotty)Microbadge: Fascinating!Microbadge: "I'm a doctor, not a . . ." - Dr. Leonard McCoyMicrobadge: "The name of the game is called, uh... fizzbin." - Captain James T. KirkMicrobadge: "Oh, but they do give us something, Mr. Spock. They give us love." - Lt. Nyota Uhura (in The Trouble with Tribbles)
I'll post Imperial Struggle first, so we can argue over whether or not it's a wargame (as one does). It's a new arrival and I'm poring over the rules, just set up for a solo game. Hopefully I can make the first moves tonight.
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2. Board Game: Tito and his Partisan Army: Yugoslavia, 1941-45 [Average Rating:5.66 Overall Rank:16619]
 Missing Image
Dave Rubin
United States
Trenton
New Jersey
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"It may be doubted whether so small a number of men ever employed so short a space of time with greater or more lasting effects upon the history of the world.” — Sir George Otto Trevelyan on the Battles of Trenton and Princeton
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Revisiting this classic, almost forty years later. Yes, the map is a problem, but not because of the abstracted zone-and-objective areas the hexophile whiners of yore kvetched about, but because the too busy swirl of color makes it hard to see the counters.

From gallery of dirubin
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3. Board Game: The Dark Valley [Average Rating:7.95 Overall Rank:2828]
Board Game: The Dark Valley
I had an unpunched unplayed copy of Dark Valley (1st Ed.), so I set it up solo to give me a distraction from dissertation work. I am curious to see how it compares with other Barbarossas I have seen, including Russian Campaign, Absolute Victory, and various versions of WiF.

I will post pictures at the end of each turn.

Phil
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4. Board Game: Verdun 1916: Steel Inferno [Average Rating:8.60 Overall Rank:5891]
Board Game: Verdun 1916: Steel Inferno
Tim Korchnoi
United States
Richmond
Virginia
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This game recently arrived on my doorstep. Now, I am not a big gamer when it comes to The Great War, but something about the game play drew me to this. Then, the art just blew my away. I am not a big art person. I can go to museums and galleries and appreciate the skill involved but it rarely "moves me".

However, the art work by Tardi in this game is amazing. I do not think I have ever seen drawings that so fully hammer home the hell that was WWI. I was so moved that I bought both his books and look forward to reading them after I finish A World Undone by G. J. Meyer.

Now, to the game itself.

This bugger landed on my doorstep on June 19th I have been playing it ever since! wow wow

I am almost finished with my 4th play and I plan to play yet again before moving on to other fields.

thumbsup The map. I got the neoprene map (I have been doing that a lot lately) and it was worth it. Very easy to fit all the pieces allows by the stacking limit in an area and still be able to read the map.
thumbsup The cards. Love the artwork, love the duration concept (each card enters play on certain turn and then departs on a given turn although some cards are in the game the whole time).
thumbsup The tension is great
thumbsup The flow. This is a game where, both sides get the chance to weather the storm but also to launch relentless assaults.
thumbsup Movement rules. Love the rotation of exhausted units as well as moving units into a vacated space when your men go "over the top"
thumbsup The 6 rule. Barrages are a bucket of dice type combat and every time you roll a 6 you get to roll another die. But be careful: too many 6 will result in friendly fire losses!!!
thumbsup Barrage and infantry assault combat are handled in a completely different manner and, IMO, and accurate one.
thumbsup Card choosing. At the start of each monthly turn each player secretly chooses a card to put into their hand. And during a turn if there is a card you desperately need you can discard two cards to go dig through your deck and get the card you want! cool
thumbsup Setting up the game is the proverbial piece of cake.
thumbsup This game gives you the feel of WWI without bogging down in too many rules or pieces.
thumbsup Combo cards. Some cards must be put into play to trigger another and a few even create some chains.
thumbsup The game does a great job of integrating all the off board events (Italian Front, Russian Front, Somme Offensive) that influenced the battle.

thumbsdown Rules organization and detail could be a little better. For example to game board is discussed in section 3 but the tracks on the board are not addressed until section 12 of the rules A few more details on movement and supply (especially regarding the impact of the Meuse River on both) would help.
thumbsdown Air superiority. This can be harsh if your opponent gets way ahead of you. yuk
thumbsdown US Entry. If you get unlucky as the French and never advance it from its starting point, things can also turn ugly.
thumbsdown Needs to be a player aid for sequence of play, combat sequence, etc...
thumbsdown Playing time can take up to 5 hours if going it alone (I average about 30 mins a turn).

There are solo rules being developed but I have not checked them out as yet. I have been trying some simple things thus far and have had a lot of fun.

Final Evaluation: Keeper thumbsup

At this point this is the best WWI game I have ever played (back off Paths of Gloryfans! I have yet to try POG so chill! ) And right now this game is in my top three for my Best New to Me games for 2020.

You can check out my videos below for more details:



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5. Board Game: Nevsky: Teutons and Rus in Collision 1240-1242 [Average Rating:8.28 Overall Rank:2895]
Board Game: Nevsky: Teutons and Rus in Collision 1240-1242
Jakub Kircun
United States
Woods Hole
Massachusetts
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I've been playing a game of Nevsky (main campaign) over Vassal for the past 5 to 6 weeks now. Finally called the game yesterday after the Teutons sacked Novgorod!

Board Game: Nevsky: Teutons and Rus in Collision 1240-1242
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6. Board Game: The Fight for Seoul [Average Rating:8.89 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.89 Unranked]
Board Game: The Fight for Seoul
ian morris
United Kingdom
Lichfield
Staffs
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Just started my sixth scenario from this awesome package, having completed five meaty ones in fifteen days. This is the best HASL I’ve played since Kampfgruppe Scherer.

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7. Board Game: Clash of Giants: Civil War [Average Rating:7.04 Overall Rank:6678]
Board Game: Clash of Giants: Civil War
Neil Mooney
United States
Quincy
Massachusetts
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Boris Karloff as General Nikolas Pherides in ISLE OF THE DEAD (1945)
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First play of this title, Gettysburg scenario, solo.

Found the rules a bit less straightforward than initially expected, but I feel like I'm getting the hang of it. Examples in the Playbook are helpful. And I like chit-pull games.

The Time Track gets a workout in this one.
From gallery of DerTroof


It’s still morning, 1 July 1863. Archer and Davis of Heth’s Confederate division have overrun half of Gamble’s cavalry brigade, but the AoP's I Corps, led by Wadsworth’s division, rolled well for command activation and are coming up fast - inspired no doubt by the tragic loss of General Reynolds. The Iron Brigade will make sure he didn't die in vain...

Initial setup
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Buford's line broken - for now...
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... but here comes the Iron Brigade!
From gallery of DerTroof
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8. Board Game: Proud Monster: The Barbarossa Campaign [Average Rating:7.23 Overall Rank:5645]
Board Game: Proud Monster: The Barbarossa Campaign
Steve Varty
United States
Victoria
Texas
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Left over from June
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9. Board Game: Stalingrad '42: Southern Russia, June-December, 1942 [Average Rating:8.58 Overall Rank:3364]
Board Game: Stalingrad '42: Southern Russia, June-December, 1942
David Martin
United States
GENEVA
Illinois
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Michael R
United States
Chicago
Illinois
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Mike and I continued our ongoing Vassal play of the Fall Blau scenario in Stalingrad '42. We just completed Turn 4.

As it stands, Mike's Axis forces have inflicted serious casualties on my Soviets, but I think I've done a decent job of trading space (and lives) for time. But I'm worried because his latest push opened up a hole in about the middle of the map. Look directly east of Kharkov and you'll see it. I'm not sure I can stop him from getting eastern map edge exit VPs.

But I am moderately sure I can hold Voronezh and Rostov, which will deny him 4 VPs if I can pull that off. My plan now is to gradually pull back my forces north of the Donets east-southeast to deny the southern map edge exit VPs.

This is a fantastic game and every time I play it I feel inspired to get back at it. I still have yet to try the Caucasus of full-on campaign, but I'm hoping to get to at least one of those sometime this summer.

From gallery of dmartin1982
Four turns in to Fall Blau
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10. Board Game: Commands & Colors Tricorne: The American Revolution [Average Rating:8.41 Overall Rank:3475] [Average Rating:8.41 Unranked]
Board Game: Commands & Colors Tricorne: The American Revolution
Judd Vance
United States
Wichita
Kansas
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"Now it is mumbo jumbo like that!!! And skinny little lizards thinking they're the last dragon to give kung fu a bad name. Come on, LeRoy! I got something REAL for yo @ss in these hands!"
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Tom and I are playing this on live Vassal. We chose the Guilford Courthouse scenario, since it is semi-close to him. I am the Continentals. He is the British. This is how the game opens:

From gallery of airjudden


My left side skirmishers moved into the forest and started attacking his left flank. He sent some regulars in there with fixed bayonets to drive them out and they retired and regrouped. Meanwhile, the militia along the fence line tried peppering his forces with skirmishing fire. He brought up some heavies and got one of my militia. On his right, he charged with the highlanders, but my guys ambushed them and hit them hard. He punched back, my regulars rallied and finished them off and took out the leader.

Just like the real battle, a well-placed line command and quick step card got the militia to fall back into the second line, just as they historically did: fire and fall back and soften them up for the heavies on the third line.

When we paused the game (concludes next week), this is how it stood.

From gallery of airjudden
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11. Board Game: Paths of Glory [Average Rating:8.06 Overall Rank:156]
Board Game: Paths of Glory
David Martin
United States
GENEVA
Illinois
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From gallery of dmartin1982
The MEF lands in the NE as the RU CAU presses toward Constantinople

Jeremy Harrison
United States
Grand Prairie
Texas
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I've been continuing my play-by-email with Jeremy. He's doing a great job pressing me in the Near East. The RU CAU has advanced to the TU trench line in Giresun. The MEF just landed as well on the opposite coast. The allied vice is tightening!

I need to find a way to take his attention off the Turks, but with a hand mostly flush with 2/2 cards, that's going to be exceedingly difficult. I do, however, plan on launching a GE attack against his RU army in Kovno next action round and introducing them to the new invention called the 'flamethrower'.
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12. Board Game: B-17: Queen of the Skies [Average Rating:7.06 Overall Rank:1543]
Board Game: B-17: Queen of the Skies
Bryan Laird
United States
Kankakee
Illinois
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I host a Play by forum for QotS and Target for Today, this is our bi-weekly mission, for mission 25 finishing the current campaign, and getting ready to resume with another campaign (we tend to run consecutive until May 1945) with a custom fighter chart, to match the current year and theater (for this 25 mission we were in the 9th US Army Air Corps we are moving to the 12th with mission 26)


External image



Bomb Run
Off Target
0%

Damage
Superficial x1
Port Wing Root 1/5
Starboard Wing Root 1/5
Starboard Wing Flap inoperable

Casualties
None

Peckham Points:
61

Landing:
Safe at Malta

Awards:
None




AAR

Zone 2-14

Nothing to report

Zone 15
We spotted a few fighters, but none came near us. The flak missed us, but with the poor weather we missed the airfield with our bombs. Then we turned for home. The flak missed us, and the fighters we didn't see on the flight in, came looking for us. It started with a single G.50 coming in on our tail, Mumma and Schwimmer both missed their shots, however, Sandelier hit it, and the pilot hit the silk. But as soon as we cleared our tail, another wave of fighters came in on us. A JU-88C barreling in on our starboard side, we counted 7 flags on the side of the Junker. Beecham and Sandelier both missed their shots, however Hugo hit the ace attacking us, which kept coming. He walked hits from wing tip to wing tip, we took a superficial hit to the port wing, a hit to the port wing root, our starboard flap was turned to swiss cheese and was unable to preform correctly, then we took a hit to the starboard wing root. As the fighter came for another pass, Sandelier and Lau both missed the Junker, but Hugo hit the enemy aircraft and it turned into a roman candle on its way to the ground.

Zone 14-13
Nothing to report.

Malta
We touched down safely.
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13. Board Game: Roads to Gettysburg II: Lee Strikes North [Average Rating:8.94 Overall Rank:3796]
Board Game: Roads to Gettysburg II: Lee Strikes North
David Dockter
United States
Minnesota
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Began the big Gettysburg scenario a few hours ago on the 157th anniversary of the battle. Damm I love this series.
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14. Board Game: Steamroller: Tannenberg 1914 [Average Rating:8.00 Unranked]
Board Game: Steamroller: Tannenberg 1914
David Dockter
United States
Minnesota
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Just arrived: love the topic. Read the rules: really liked what I read. Maybe will solo it this holiday weekend.
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15. Board Game: Cuba: The Splendid Little War [Average Rating:7.26 Overall Rank:8486]
Board Game: Cuba: The Splendid Little War
David Dockter
United States
Minnesota
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My new copy just arrived: my other copy is in lockdown storage cry Played it a few years ago, [thread=thread][/thread] Really liked it.
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16. Board Game: The Eastern Front: 1914-1917 [Average Rating:8.25 Unranked] [Average Rating:8.25 Unranked]
Board Game: The Eastern Front: 1914-1917
David Dockter
United States
Minnesota
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My first jump into Series: Der Weltkrieg
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17. Board Game: Triumph of Chaos v.2 (Deluxe Edition) [Average Rating:8.30 Overall Rank:6828]
Board Game: Triumph of Chaos v.2 (Deluxe Edition)
David Dockter
United States
Minnesota
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Just having fun playing a series of games with ToC Jedi Bob H during lockdown...and answering rules questions from new pilgrims Did manage to get up, fingers crossed, the final living rules.
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18. Board Game: Holdfast: Tunisia 1942-43 [Average Rating:8.34 Overall Rank:9233]
Board Game: Holdfast: Tunisia 1942-43
Ronald EMCA LADD
Canada
Whitby/Durham Region
Ontario
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Last month the designer; Matt Looby, asked for volunteers to help him improve his game as he would like to develop a ‘living rules’ for the game. I did volunteer and he accepted my offer. I do work some long hours and was waiting for a bit of time off and when I got there, I tripped and fell hard. That’s the first time in a very long time. I was put on a muscle relaxant and found myself sleeping about 15 to 18 hours a day and the awake time I did have, I was rather stuporous. My injures have healed and this game is hitting the table, just as I head back on duty and will be working 12-15 hours a day until the mid month. Still I’m hoping for a bit of time here and there until I’m off again.
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19. Board Game: Napoléon: The Waterloo Campaign, 1815 [Average Rating:7.35 Overall Rank:1428]
Board Game: Napoléon: The Waterloo Campaign, 1815
alex w
Singapore
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Just had a game with first edition. The lesser amount of blocks served a quick game in an evening. Sad to report that the Allies lost. The French managed to destroy both armies piece meal.

Somehow, the 1-2 blow didn’t work this time. laugh
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20. Board Game: Napoleon at Bay: The Campaign in France, 1814 [Average Rating:6.98 Overall Rank:5256]
Board Game: Napoleon at Bay: The Campaign in France, 1814
alex w
Singapore
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Because of the entertainment we had with Napoleon. We decided to try this out. Will set it up for a game this coming weekend.

Update:
Didn’t quite like it. It’s too open and we end up doing some chase. It does give a feeling of Gettysburg 77. At a smaller scale.
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21. Board Game: La Bataille de Ligny [Average Rating:7.83 Overall Rank:4618]
Board Game: La Bataille de Ligny
Paul Brown
United Kingdom
Market Drayton
England
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1pm on 16th June 1815: Napoleon & Blucher face off across Ligny brook as the Hundred Days build towards its climax.

From gallery of pajbrown


From gallery of pajbrown


EDIT - swapped photos for some in focus ones


28 July - Finally shook free of a demanding DIY project and fired the first salvos! Let the carnage commence:

From gallery of pajbrown


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22. Board Game: Lee vs. Grant: The Wilderness Campaign of 1864 [Average Rating:7.11 Overall Rank:4625]
Board Game: Lee vs. Grant: The Wilderness Campaign of 1864
Steve Arthur
Australia
New South Wales
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and I have finally got back together again, ftf.

We have been playing VASSAL games but have not posted them. One was The Coming Storm: Quadrigame of the Fourth Coalition October 1806 - June 1807, Eylau ATB scenario. I couldn't post that as my hidden units would have been displayed! cry

We are still playing The U.S. Civil War via VASSAL which will definitely get finished.

However, Steve has distracted me from my Napoleonic obsession (yet again) and distracted me in to the ACW again. So, I decided to set up Lee vs. Grant: The Wilderness Campaign of 1864 and restart our face to face sessions here at my house.

Today we went through the rules which are not at all difficult. This is the ancestral version of the Series: Great Campaigns of the American Civil War (Avalon Hill/MMP).

The main problem here is to figure out the strategic situation and actually DO something. Anyway, we chose sides randomly and I am the Union here.

Next week we will start the game. Here is the set up situation:

From gallery of Moruya23




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23. Board Game: Stonewall's Sword: The Battle of Cedar Mountain [Average Rating:8.05 Overall Rank:5240]
Board Game: Stonewall's Sword: The Battle of Cedar Mountain
My new, distracted, ACW focus has also pushed me into setting up this one and I played the first turn solo this afternoon after reading the rules.

I own the SPI version of this battle which is a classic (Cedar Mountain: Prelude to Bull Run, August 9, 1862) and I always wanted to buy the newer version in the GMT sale (Twin Peaks) but last year I missed the sale deadline and it went out of stock.

So, to replay this game I went to the new version. And here it is on the table. Should be fun. It's a lot more complicated than the old version but not too hard for an old cardboard pusher like me.

Last week, a copy of Twin Peaks came up on my favourite trading thread so now that one is coming here too. I have 3 games on this small battle but it is a big one in my wargaming memories.

Here is the set up for the latest version:

From gallery of Moruya23


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24. Board Game: WW2 Deluxe: The War in Europe [Average Rating:6.85 Overall Rank:12705]
Board Game: WW2 Deluxe: The War in Europe
David Brown
United Kingdom
Stockport
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Set up but about to be packed away (probably for good).

Very dissapointed with this game. The German start insanely strong and on turn 1 can conquer Poland, Belgium and the Netherlands with no risk. I know it is a high level game but it should bare some resemblance to history.

Also the rules are at times vague and the gameplay is a bit boring. I maybe being a bit unfair but I'm very dissapointed with this and I can't see me exploring it any further.
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25. Board Game: Normandy '44 [Average Rating:7.89 Overall Rank:1519]
Board Game: Normandy '44
Randy D
Australia
Sebastopol (Ballarat)
Victoria
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That's Karl on the left. Eternity on the right.
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I love Melissa, but don't tell her. It's a secret if she can find this. Shhhhh....
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Playing 1 to 2 turns each evening after work. First time playing it. It looks difficult for the Germans, particularly with a number of clear weather turns in a row. Some early squandering of supplies, which could have been better used for determined defense.

It's a delicious game. I've got 1st ed, but I'm using the 2nd ed rules. It'll be interesting to see how this one plays out. Because of the relatively small number of quality units, every decision feels important (particularly for the Germans) where errors appear very costly indeed!

Just finished June 9th, I've rolled for weather and June 10th is clear again, so the Allied Air are limiting German movements, attacks, and supplies. Gruelling, but delightful.

From gallery of GeneSteeler
June 9 - end of day.
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