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Subject: Verdun Sessions Part IV (#51-#52) rss

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VERDUN SESSIONS PART IV (#51--#52)

Introduction


So far there are four “Fort Scenarios”--2 at Douaumont and 2 at Vaux. Although many others include Fortified Positions, I would not include them in this category. Looking at the final two Verdun games, I see that they are both Fort Scenarios—Fort Souville and a third at Douaumont. So a full half of the dozen scenarios include a Fort.

Fleury (#51)

This is another unique scenario. Resources are nearly equal, but the defending French have an artillery advantage, and more units on the board. On the other hand, their front line is rudimentary, and most units have less protection than a trench, although it does include a B/F on the Right with an MG. Many French reserves are in the rear at Fort Souville, a 3 hex Fort (including a Mortar and another MG), or set back on the Left Flank. The Germans have a Mortar and two Flamethrowers. The Germans will add 3 more and the French 4 more SPF.

The German Plan: I'm licking my lips at the almost side to side mass of troops ready to attack, and the unconnected French outpost defenses! So let's do it. If you know be by now, you know I'd rather just bypass that front line bunker, though. The Fort is probably too far in the rear to take, but since I'll need 7 points, it may be worth grabbing a late Fort hex if enough reserves have left the position by then, assuming it doesn't become the new Front Line if the French are all forced way back, which seems unlikely.

The French Plan: Rush reserves up from both flanks to stabilize a front, probably in the main trenches behind the outpost line set up from Left to Right in that bunker (MG), two villages with Fortified Positions partly behind wire, and one unit in a forward trench spur.

SPF Chosen:
German (3) Elite, LTMG, Bomber
French (4) Officer, Engineer, LTMG, Bomber

Note: Each side starts with a “Hy Mortar,” and without an official FAQ answer to this editing problem so far, I and others are taking to mean one with a Spotter. for now. Look for a later post where I review the different SPFs.

The Preliminary NML Barrage: This had a minimal impact, although taking out the Leftmost two wire hexes close to one Fortified Position (but these were covered by that French MG in the bunker).

The Germans opened up a massive attack all along the line. On the Right, the French almost wiped out the German Bomber unit and got that SPF, and moved massive reinforcements up the trench line. In the Center, the German Flamethrower attacked the Leftmost Building/FP, but failed to get a flag, although rolling 3 soldiers, it did take one out. But on the Right the Germans played Short of Supply, hustling the MG out of the lone Bunker and immediately occupying it themselves!

A French counter attack killed many Germans and retreated the enemy Flamethrower back to its start trench. The fired missed on a great series of adjacent hexes with their artillery. The Germans had lost nine figures to only two for the French, but the Germans were moving up. They took out the unit in the Left FP and occupied it: Score: Germans 1 French 1 (which they started with for the village) of 7. In the most forward section of the French forward trenches on the Right, the French played a Recon card and opened up a duel between the two respective LTMG units, only two hexes from each other in the trenches. Score French 2 Germans 1 of 7. The Germans occupied a second house of three in Fleury village, setting themselves up for taking away the French starting VP and replacing it with one of their own.

The French fired a tremendous barrage rolling two pairs of doubles, but somehow did no damage, although they'd powered it with another Recon card. So the Score went now to French 3 Germans 1, but on the German turn flipped to Germans 2 French 2! Back and forth went the fighting and the VP!

The next turn put the German player in a dilemma! Although the Germans were the attackers, the French began the scenario unusually for the defenders with a 14 to 12 unit superiority in numbers. Now that the Germans had taken more casualties in their advance, they had a Trench Raid card to play along with other moves. The wildest option would be to send their LTMG up for spaces through wire to attack the Fort. The French had abandoned two of the three Fort hexes, leaving a MG behind in the last one. If the German unit attacked with the extra 4th die and retreated the target MG, it would be able to enter a Fort space for a VP. And it could just pull back if it didn't. But left alone in the Fort, with no backup units, it would be alone in the middle of many French units advancing up to the front who could turn around. This would probably halt the whole French advance on the Right, where the Germans were now weak, but probably mean the loss of the LTMG and the VP for taking the Fort if gained.

Sometimes you just go for it, because hey, its only a game. It would be glorious to actually take a Fort hex! But in this case I chose instead for a more conservative Plan B. The Flamethrower would attack the second village building hex with an FP instead, using that Trench Raid card, hopefully take it, and then force the more numerous French to assault the strong positions, hopefully being costly to them. And let the Gauls “bleed themselves to death” doing so! Mwah Ha Ha!

But with four dice rolled, they Germans got no flag! But with a Burst and a Deadly Die, they did take out two figures or half of the French unit—no easy feat againat an FP/Building! So they went back to their own main trench, having pretty much equalized the casualty count for both sides.

The French now made a number of nasty moves. Having previously used the Engineer to build a new FP on the only 'Y' trench intersection on the board (two hexes SE of the village FP from which the German Flamethrower had been repulsed, they moved that Engineer into the Left Center. They also attacked from their trench into the only nonFortified village hex of the three and wiped out the German Elite unit (Score French 3 Germans 2 of 7), and moved an Officer unit up from the Center to the Right, behind and adjacent to the German LTMG. (The British would historically have had a purpose built armored personnel carrier ready for "Plan 1919" if the war had lasted that long, but it was never built. So this ability to move quickly on the board is more important than it first looked to me when I considered the new SPFs). Although in a Shell Crater now instead of a Trench, the Officer was now adjacent to a vulnerable single figures German unit in a Forest which had been previously pulled back from the fighting! Hey, don't think I ever intentionally favor one side over the other when I solitaire!

The German Flamethrower now wiped out the French Bomber unit that had pushed it out from the village hex (Score Germans 3 French 3 of 7), but decided not to advance into its more vulnerable hex. That meant they would lose the village VP next turn. But for the French to gain it, they would have to come adjacent to the Flamethrower, so MwaHaHa again! As I like to say when I'm trash talking a live opponent these days, especially when things don't seem to be going so well for me and I have to regroup::”Be careful—it could be—a trap!"

This scenario is lots of fun, and gains equal honors with the previous Fort scenario for Best Fort scenario so far, even though it seems to favor the French! This is because both have lots of tactical fluidity; they are not just “seige” type affairs where there is no choice on what to do but bash forward against strong defenses.

The French knock out that single man unit, as the Germans had no card to activate it. The French go up a VP and on the German turn they do down one: Score French 4 Germans 2. The French move the Engineer so as to be able to build and occupy an FP in their trench next to that crucial unfortified third village space, and pick another Recon card...

A weird situation has now unfolded where the Germans hit the French Officer from both back (their LTMG in a French trench) and and back from two units. A ranged attack retreated it, and then the LTMG got ready for a close assault and reduced the Gaul to just one man plus Officer! But then the French played Butt and Bayonet and cut the German down also to one man and LTMG! This was bloody combat, with more VP in the balance on the Right.

Cards like Storm of Fire, Return Fire, and Body Armor sat useless in both hands, since all fighting has been only Close Assault for several turns! This correspondent races back and forth from the living room where the game is being played out back to the den computer to record these events as they happen! The French LTMG close assaults and destroys the German LTMG: Score French 5 Germans 2. Now the French must play their last Recon before it becomes a point game, since the final VP can't be gained with a Recon card. The French still have a numerical superiority of 12 units to 10, and most are at full strength, whereas most of the Germans are reduced.

They don't know it, but both sides are holding deadly Box Barrage cards,and building up HQ tokens to power them! The Germans are ready first, but don't have the sector card they need. Instead they use their Mortar and other units against the French village/FP with a Storm of Fire. Where they missed once before, they kill a man and place my first Mortar Spotter SPF target marker on the French unit, which had just replaced a much reduced one in that Bunker. Now that they are zeroed in, will the French stay there? The French play their final Recon card, and the Score goes to French 6 Germans 2 of 7.

The Germans have so short term solution, but are in good defensive positions. So they play their own Recon card. Their Mortar Spotter, which had been given an extra die by Storm of Fire (its important to note that this card boosts all ranged combat, including heavy weapons) now gets one on its own automatically with its Range Marker in place. So its excellent against a stationary target given time. And indeed, it takes out a second man from the target unit. Plus with the Recon giving a choice of two cards, soon gives the Germans the card they'll need to unleash a deadly 3 die Box Barrage against the packed French trench, with three juicy adjacent units next turn!

Just for fun, the French built their second Fortified Position, thus leaving the final village hex in between two FP, the other having been on the board from the beginning in the village. Then they take the HQ points they'll need to fund their own Box Barrage. They have seen a single man unit pulled back to the first German trench and plan a 'cheap shot' at victory with their more powerful 4 die artillery shoot next turn! A hit will mean the win.

Back to the Germans for what they don't realize may be their final turn. If you can't win, play well and scare the hell out of the enemy! Although the expensive artillery only takes out one French infantryman, the Mortar Spotter wipes the French unit out of the Bunker: Score French Six Germans 3 of 7. Plus if the French don't reenter their Bunker, the Germans will get the village VP.

The French will go for their 'cheap shot,' as it is a likely win. This proves to be the case, and the French roll two sets of doubles while ignoring the usual trench protection, taking out the single man for the final game victory!

This scenario is great fun to play, with all of the different situations that can come up. Can the Germans do better? Only replays will tell. But since I don't often get to go through a series of successive scenarios with fact to face opponents, I've got this one down as one to try out against a live opponent when I get the opportunity.


French Retake Fort Douaumont (#52)

For this final Verdun scenario, the French are on the attack, with one more command card in their hand and two more combat cards at start! This is the only Verdun scenario where the attacker is not Racing Against Time. They French also get an unprecedented maximum of a 5 strength Reserve Artillery, and 7 rows of No Man's Land Shelling, in which unoccupied trench and Bunker hexes will be replaced by shell hoes from the giant French railway guns firing! Gott in Himmel! That's not to mention more HQ tokens, plus a superiority of 16 to 12 starting units. But suddenly...”The French units near the Fort found their "Startline" trench was occupied by German units that had evacuated the fort! Merde! Yet the French will probably win, as they did historically, because on top of it all, every C&C player know that playing with a hand of only four cards is the Kiss of Death—unless the other fellow is too. But still, it ought to be a heck of a fight!

SPF Chosen
French (4): Officer, Elite, Bomber, Heavy Loader (Mortar)
German (3): Officer, LTMG, Heavy Loader (Mortar)

No Man's Land Shelling KABOOM! Total Shell Craters: 16
Fort Area: 1 Bunker, 3 Trench, 1 adjacent to Fort, 1 wide right (6)
Between Fort and French Startline Trench (Germans) 5
Between Startline Trench and French board edge trench (French) 5

The German Plan: Well, the shell holes left some retreat for us in the Startline Trench back tot he Fort. I wouldn't rush to leave, but the solid German line made a dangerous artillery target if the French got a Box Barrage card! I hadn't tried the Heavy Loader Mortar yet, and thought they might come in handy as the Germans had almost no Reserve Artillery, and the French might shoot through their HQ tokens pretty fast. Although tempted to put the German LTMG in the first Fort trench, I put it instead inside the one occupied Bunker/Fort hex as a last ditch defense. The German Officer was to retreat back between the startline and Fort trenches quickly, and the French Officer to move up quickly and the French Elite the same; both positioned on the far Right hexes (the Left was covered by a the only German MG.

Phase I: The French Verdun Victory March. The French start the attack out with a bang! First I moved up their Officer to totally outflank their trench line and almost reach the extended front trench linked to the Fort behind it. Then I rolled my very first 5 dice Reserve Artillery bombardment of my entire TGW career—over 50 scenarios—and got a triple, which I think I've seen happen maybe three times before this. Adding an extra die really changes the chances of making your artillery shoot do more damage, and in this case it took effect right away, with three dice on the unit to the side of the target hex, three on target, and one die on the unit to the other side—hitting all three of three possible adjacent targets in the "Startline" Trench. I took out two figures on the target hex and one on a side hex. Then my very first Mortar shot with Loader missed. Still, les Gaulois were off to a good start! Vivre la France!

Ach du Lieber! How to respond? Playing a German Storm of Fire card, I took out two men in the outflanking French Officer unit, and one other infantry, before the French closed in with an infantry advance and the card became useless. With only four cards my choice would always be limited, so I'd have to trust in God, and keep my powder dry! Gott Mitt Uns!

Without any great French cards, I hit the Germans on the flank with a ranged and a close assault, and use Lice drive the sole remaining figure out of its "Startline" trench. The Germans now had a two man unit in the trench, the lone survivor to their NW in a shell hole, and luckily for them, one 'reserve' unit in the trench NY of the solo figure, as their flank bent backwards on the French Right sector. Here, while ranged combat raged all along the line it was here where close assault proved deadly; the French Officer was reduced to only one man and the Officer, the German 'reserve' unit to only two. Meanwhile, the German Officer in the Center section pulled back to the fort “moat trench” as planned. And the German Mortar with Loader on the Left began its journey from the village toward the Fort “moat" trench in the open ground, hoping the French would fire on better targets than this lone unit.

The French Officer had entered the second trench line, and got a VP for that. Now they KO'd the German 'reserve' infantry and took out the two man flank unit on the "Startline." Score French 3 Germans 0 of 8, and the German front on the "startline" trench was becoming untenable!

Again the French unleashed a 5 die salvo! They rolled two doubles, but this time they did not hit anything but the target hex, and got no casualties there. However, a French infantry attacking did take out a man on the Right flank of the German line,which was fast disappearing!

The German Mortar with Loader moved again, now adjacent to the “moat” trench. Meanwhile a German unit in the Center pulled back from the front "Startline”, which was now emptied on its left half (Left and Center sections). The Germans prepared a Lost Messenger card to slow the French down, but the French were only playing low activation cards, so it wasn't used yet. The French killed that Right flank unit Score French 4 Germans 0 of 8, and the Germans had only two units left in the "Startline," which they'd need to defend the Fort area! The German Mortar/Loader made it to the NW “moat" trench.

There was a lull in the fight, as the French moved up, and the Germans used an Infantry Assault card to evacuate the “(French) Startline.” They now consolidated the “moat" trench in front of the fort with four infanty backed up by the LTMG and Mortar/Loader, with an MG still on the Right flank. The Leftmost German unit was in the Doaumont village Church (making its third appearance as such). It looks so much like a regular Building that I'm going to keep in a separate labeled baggie with the five Bunker/Fort hexes and whatever other 'rare' terrain shows up in future TGW expansions. I'm also now keeping the Bridge/Destroyed Bridge and Fortified Position rectangles separate from the more common Wire/Trench rectangles for faster set up and NML Shelling).

The French had taken only 5 casualties; the Germans 15. Unusually, no SPF had been lost. A whole new phase of the game was about to begin.

Phase II: The German Defense of Fort Douaumont So far the German four card hand had not handicapped them much, probably because the French had not had many strong cards. The Germans had successfully pulled out of a deathtrap and stood on a strong defensive line. Both sides could be proud of what they had accomplished—I'll take two pats on the back, thank you!

After bring up one Mortar and one MG to their front “Startline,” which now had become the actual French Startline, the Republicans fired off a tremendous 5 die Box Barrage, the most powerful Reserve Artillery shoot possible under the current game rules! This centered on The German Officer unit, which had an adjacent Infantry, both in the “moat trench,” and another adjacent infantry, which was the only current Fort garrison in its four hexes (one having been turned into a Shell Crater by the NML Shelling at the start of the game). These three units were all at full strength, and formed the center of the German line. Being only five hexes wide, it was impossible for the Germans not to present some good artillery targets. A French infantry stood by on the Right approach trench line to follow up later with an attack, as the closest French position to the enemy.

The French ranging dice included doubles which put two effect dice on target and on an adjacent unit, and one die on the other adjacent unit. An excellent start, with no terrain protection for any of the three target units. The other two dice hit empty hexes. KAWHOOM!!! The Germans lost a man and the Officer figure, and retreated from the Target Hex. Another figure came off from the unit in the Fort, and the third target unit hat to retreat. Noting spectacular, but with only four cards, could the Germans respond to retake the positions, and since it have proved an attractive artillery target, did they even want to do so? They did move back into the “moat” trench, and fired ineffectively at long range.

The Germans also picked up an Artillery Bombard card, which made me think about using for the first time ever a minimum 2 die artillery shoot, the strongest they cold manage. Well, you can still roll doubles, and the card would give me two chances to do it. The Germans were husbanding their best cards for the inevitable infantry assault, and still ready with their Lost Messenger card and the HQ to power it! The idea would to not use it until the enemy second turn of attack, and strand the attackers out in an open no man's land! They also had two Butt and Bayonet cards; one scrounged with a Counter Intelligence card. And the flank positions out to the sides of the main line were safe, the Right infantry in the Church and the Left MG in a Trench.

While both sides improved their hands over several turns, tension continued to mount, as yet more French units moved forward, and Replacement cards added to the Gallic units on the front Left and a German frontline and Fort unit (you don't want to leave single units around for an enemy Cheap Shot, as we've seen above). TENSION CONTINUED TO MOUNT! When would the French finally attack? Its the waiting that gets you! Men began to go raving mad: “What are they/we waiting for, for God's sake; why don't they come/let us go?” Some on either side had to be slapped back to sanity “Thanks, I needed that.” Others just started to silently weep. “Take it easy, old man—it will be alright.” TENSION CONTINUED TO MOUNT...

SUDDENLY (Dun Dun Dun!) the wily French struck on the one sector where the Huns did not expect it—the Right! One blue unit lept out of their trench and into an adjacent Shell Crater, to attack the MG in close assault, doing no damage. A second got with two spaces of the MG, firing but also doing no damage. , A third moved up for later support, also entering a Shell Crater. As the French expected, the Germans then played their Butt and Bayonet card (the Frenchman didn't know his opponent also had a second one), but LOOK OUT—ITS A TRAP! The Frenchman immediately “when your opponent declares a Close Assault” played Strike First, and did! (You may consider this a controversial Game Master call—but I also let someone Counter Attack a previous Counter Attack and so forth—I feel that if you have a card, you should be able to use it when possible).

So the lead French unit actually now struck second (having already struck first, and took out two machine gunner. But then the Germans got their card played and took out a Frenchman, so that the blue unit also had only two figures left. With the nearest German two hexes away, the MG could not really expect support.

EVEN MORE SUDDENLY AND UNEXPECTEDLY, amidst a hail of Whistles and Bugle Calls, six French units activated in the Center! The German player was tempted to use his Lost Messenger card immediately, but held it for the next turn as previously planned instead! Two French infantry moved out into no man's land, while a French MG, Mortar, and Bomber attacked a two man German unit but got no hits. Then the Germans unleaded a deadly Machine Gun Barrage, wiping out the brave adjacent French infantry unit, and taking three men from the second attacker, sending the last figure reeling back into a startline trench. Meanwhile, a nearby German infantry killed two men from the Bomber unit out in the open. Score French 4, Germans 1 of 8.

The French Mortar with Loader removed one of two figures in a frontline unit, and then close assaulted with the Bomber, hoping to take out the last German and then play Battle Fury against another German unit adjacent, but got no hit, even with the Bomber's extra close assault die. The French now wiped out the Bomber unit Score French 4 Germans 2 of 8. With a Gallic shrug, the French now player said: “Ah, well--you can't make an omelet without breaking some eggs.”

Smoke now obscured the battlefield as the French missed with another 5 die barrage, but here and there units were taking casualties all over the Center. The Germans had picked up some very nasty cards, and now unleashed Storm of Fire. French casualties were mounting, and the German LTMG picked of the last man of a blue unit in no man's land among other casualties: Score French 4 Germans 3 of 8.

The French fired their Mortar/Loader to take out the only single man German unit Score French 5 Germans 3. The Germans missed with their minimal artillery shoot on the only French single figure unit way back on the French baseline, but the German MG took out two French Mortar crew.

The French played Artillery Bombard, on which the Germans finally used their Lost Messenger. I ruled that the German card canceled out the French one, and the French lost their turn; the Germans lots of HQ markers. Then the German LTMG, continuing to prove its worth, took out two Fernchmen in a Shell Crater in no man's land. The French artillery took out an entrenched German on the Left. But now the Germans took out a last figure in no man's land, Score French 5 Germans 4 of 8. This has been a long game, and no only because of the higher VP requirement.

Then the storm broke! The French had been gathering cards to make their main attack on the Left, where they had infantry units closest to the Germans. Now four strong French infantry moved up, three into close assault, but got not a single hit on the Germans. However, their line was now overlapping the Germans on the Left flank. The Huns fought back in punishing attritional warfare, even moving their 'reserve' unit on the flank out of the Church to engage the enemy out in the open. The French lost their Officer unit, Score French 5 Germans 5 of 8, but the German line was so thin that it had only a unit with 1 man, one with 2, and the LTMG with 2, all entrenched.

The French now dumped their full load of artillery shells on the center German unit, while moving up their Elite to close assault the enemy LTMG. The Germans planned to pull back into the Fort with Rush and Rotation, if they survived—but would they?

The French got no artillery hits at all on their temptingly vulnerable but entrenched targets; even two dice on their own Elite unit scored no hits (luckily for them). The Elite than took out one German machine gunner. The Germans indeed were now able to abandon the “moat” trench and pull back into the fort, also moving their 'reserve' unit from the trench into the “moat” trench. Now three of the four Fort hexes were garrisoned (the fourth being behind the others). The French offensive was still rolling along! The Germans had now been pushed back to their final defensive line, since they could not afford to lose any Fort hexes.

As witness to the unusual length of this scenario, I now had to reshuffle the Command Card deck, which rarely happens in a standard format C&C game. Then the French Elite unit close assaulted the heroic German LTMG in a Fort hex, which was down to only one man and the SPF. The Elite took out the unit! Score French 6 Germans 5 of 8, with a 7th VP for the French for the Fort at the start of their next turn, if the Germans did not take the Fort hex back!

The Germans would have liked to use their Gas Attack card to try and force the French out of their only Fort hex, but were still one HQ token short of being able to power it! Instead they used Infantry Assault to attack from three different directions, and only took out the French Elite on the third try, reoccupying the Fort hex! Score French 6 Germans 6 of 8! A close game.

Rolling two pairs of double, the French artillery takes out a two man unit in a fort. Score French 7, Germans 6 of 8. Other Germans are killed as well. They are getting very thin on the ground, which is why the French did not fire at a lone one man unit in the back of the “moat” trench, but this remains as a victory option after the French collect HQ enough ammo once again.

The Germans, using a Mortar Barrage with their Mortar/Loader, got two 5 die attacks against a full strength entrenched French infantry unit near the German position, and took out two of them. This unit now offered a possible victory point to the Germans if they were to finish it off. The German MG now takes out the French Mortar/Loader, even though it is in a trench. Score French 7, Germans 7 of 6. Its now a point game, with the French up first!

They move up troops on the Left. On the Right they move up and attack the German MG in close assault once again, killing one of two surviving machine gunners. Backed into a corner, the Germans play Direct From HQ, and start a desperate all out offensive to get that game point, before the French can knock out that last Machine Gunner with their full strength unit. The German Mortar/Loader fires at that entrenched French two man unit, and roll an unlikely two Bursts, taking them both down and winning the game Germans 8 French 7! This is amazing and unexpected, since the French seemed to be favored from the beginning. But this shows that either side can win. Had the French had one more turn, they were in a position to win, with a full strength infantry unit adjacent to that lone machine gunner.

Ignoring two single man units, one per side, the French had 15 infantry still on the board versus only 8 Germans. They had a second Mortar and MG that were never engaged. But in C&C you are playing for VP, rather than for a military win. Its hard to describe the give and take of each turn with its card flow and dice rolls. But I think I did a pretty good job with both sides.

One thing I learned was that a Bunker/Fort is more vulnerable to close assault than a distance attack, as it only ignores one infantry hit in close assault (but the garrison won't retreat), but two at range. The French never got many units next to the Fort hexes; its pretty hard to do. It would be fun to play this scenario again with a live opponent!

**

This 12 scenario Verdun series has some great scenarios, and lots of interesting options with the Special Personnel Figures. You have to read the SPF abilities very carefully! Like the TGF card decks, there are nuances which only reveal themselves slowly during play. I'll be doing a tentative evaluation of them in a future Strategy post!

If you've enjoyed all or part of this four part series of session reports, fell free to add some questions or comments. And I hope you enjoy your own copy of The Great War as much as I have so far!









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Mayor Jim
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Thank you! Looking forward to more of these...whistle
 
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Bill Koff
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Re: Verdun Sessions Part IV (#51-#52) - mine crater hexes?
Hey Chas, thanks for this series and the SPF strategy article. One question on the setup for the Fleury scenario (#51). The setup diagram shows 3 mine crater hexes on the French left, but my counter mix only contains 1 mine crater hex (I have the base game and both expansions). Do you remember if you were able to use 3 mine crater hexes, or did you substitute shell crater tokens for 2 of them, or what? (Edit: looking at scenario #52, I see that its setup also shows 3 mine crater hexes, on the French right.)
 
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Richard Borg has verified that there are no Mine Craters in Expansion #2. They are all supposed to be Hills. For this and a few other matters you can check the FAQ thread here:

www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/2096819/scenario-edits
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chas59 wrote:
Richard Borg has verified that there are no Mine Craters in Expansion #2. They are all supposed to be Hills. For this and a few other matters you can check the FAQ thread here:

www.boardgamegeek.com/thread/2096819/scenario-edits

Got it, thanks!
 
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Yes, no mines in the French expansion...
 
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