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Ray Gaer
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After discovering Roll Player and having that on my table for two weeks I've decided to get this little indie Up Front offspring a play. As with Up Front there is no solo variant so I thought I'd take a stab at creating a solo mode since some of the mechanics midigate total control.

So far here are my thoughts at this early stage:


I've only got two basic games under my belt but I have some early impressions.
thumbsup A ton of cards of good quality. I like the are style in comparison to Up Front or Frontline: D-Day.
thumbsup Interesting mechanics for resolving combat that reminded me of my Squad Leader days with the many modifiers.
thumbsdown No player aid for the symbols and a more in depth flow chart would of been helpful. Rule book has a boot camp on basics but there's just not enough illustrations and examples to catch everything in a single read.
thumbsdown No solo rules even though they were mentioned as being a possibility during the Kickstarter but the designer seems game to create one in the future.


Overall, it's interesting like Up Front and has enough complexity it feels like a card version of Tide of Iron. I think it fits a narrow audience who want a cheaper version of Up Front with the possibility that the designer will expand on the game in the future with more units and a campaign mode.

Here are some the the interesting mechanics I liked in the game. Like I mentioned before this game is a mixture of Squad Leader, Up Front, Frontline D-Day and Fields of Fire.

I like the use of terrain cards to set up the battlefield frame and that there is room for the players to play terrain cards down during the course of the game. There is more variation than Frontline which uses fewer terrain cards and the art is more pleasing then my old Up Front game. Like with Fields of Fire there is some fog of war about the terrain you or the enemy will face when advancing.

I like that the characters have a personality, special attributes and a name instead of a nameless card/counter. The cards are easy to read.

Hand management for this game is fun and adds a variety of ways that players can influence the battle regardless throughout the turn phases which means there is no downtime.

Playing solo is more difficult with hand management that interrupts the opposition.

Maybe it was the scenario I was playing but the combat engagement was fairly swift. I wish there was more clarity about firing across multiple terrain cards.

The rulebook is an easy read even at 66 pages because some of it is glossary and scenario specific detail. However, there are many small rules mentioned here and there that would of been good to put on a player aid. The rulebook is not a hard read and the boot camp is very helpful but a chart here or there would of been nice.

When your soldier is firing you have to pull cards from the timer stack to get multiple results from different cards. If you hate adding and subtracting modifiers and results this is not for you. I did like how each solders discipline could have an impact on the combat results. I said this was interesting because I've never seen a combat system where just to get the basic combat number I'm pulling 2,3,or even 4 different cards. I'm not sure why they would want so many variables even before taking into account the terrain of the attacker/defender, special abilities, instant cards that modify combat, and individual discipline modifiers. I found myself practically counting on my hands to remember all the numbers. Again, here a flow chart would of been helpful.

As I was playing I was almost wishing that there were miniatures on the cards so I could get more of a visual feel for the game. The cards are large and cover the terrain even if they do look cool. I would of preferred counters like Fields of Fire.

There are no vehicles and they are play-testing mortars according to the designer.


Anyone else have thoughts on this game?
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Andrew Kluck
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Would you go more in depth with how it works? What are the 'interesting mechanics for resolving combat'? The rules are 66 pages (though they are smaller pages) is this really simpler than Up Front mechanically? You mentioned it was cheaper, Up Front is $60 at Wargame vault for the core set (Russians, Germans and Americans, AFVs, action cards and chits) Is this a better value at $40 for the core set?
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Ray Gaer
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I added some other thoughts above.

In the end I'd say this is worth $40 if you wanted just infantry combat and something lighter than Up Front or far less lighter than Fields of Fire. It feels more casual than both of those games and like a Heroes of Normandie it adds flavor by having cards that impact play. Now that I'm thinking about it it feels a lot like HON except the terrain is somewhat unknown depending on the scenario. But like I said, I've only played two games and I'm now starting to work on some solo rules to see if it's a keeper.

I think for the long haul I'd invest the $20 more to get Up Front but for the more casual gamer who has a friend who like to play head to head this could be a good occasional game. I do think that a campaign system would add incentive to play out what happens to individual characters.
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Dmytro
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A good idea with the campaign is to print that through Wargamevault.

I don't believe anything more is needed than just a set of 5-7 Mission cards, 5-20 Mission specific mini-cards and occasional 1-5 Soldier cards for a good campaign.

So, that package might cost somewhere $5.99-15.99 (depending on the card count) and bring lots of play inside.

However, that's going to be just a straight playthrough of 5-7 Mission cards.

While, idea I've had in mind was a set of 10-15 Mission cards and matrix showing what Mission to play next. Obviously, different missions are played depending what side won the battle.
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