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A Victory Lost» Forums » Sessions

Subject: A Victory Lost PBEM tournament rss

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Mark Humphries
Philippines
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I wonder if it's just that the Germans are more difficult to play well, in which case we can expect their win/loss ratio to improve over time as players gain more experience, or is it the case that the victory conditions really do need to be revised in the German player's favor?
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Jason Cawley
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With good play, the Russians are quite strong. The thing that benefits them most is clumped HQ activation draws in the first half of the game. By that I mean, 2-3 activations in a row going to them.

Sure, that means the Germans also get some clumped activations, but that simply makes less of a difference when the enemy has the initiative, much larger forces, etc. When the Germans get an early double move, it is often widely separated HQs, and at best it helps some units get clear and select good positions - but they can't all pull back because they need to stay tied in with the units on either side of the active HQ, who can't move yet and so are anchored in place.

But when the Russians get an early double move, it is often Stavka on one side of the double, or HQs near each other with partially overlapping command radii. Which means the same units move, and move again, and hit after the second. That lets the mech corps, especially, worm into the line of German ZOCs and block retreats, getting surround kills etc.

When the Russians focus on killing lots of units early, and exploit double moves to set up surround kills or exploit through holes in strength or both, the Germans wind up reacting a lot and barely able to patch a line back together.

Of course, in the second half of the game the Germans have more activations and their reinforcements have arrived. It all depends on whether they are already severely weakened by then. If they barely have enough units left to hold a line, they can't concentrate lots of armor for counterblows.

It still can run either way, there is plenty of variance in the HQ draw sequence, and room for "head fake" aka anticipation skill in the active HQ selection, and movement of reserves "reading" where the hits will fall before the HQs actually come out. If the Russians waste too much time early, the Germans can give lots of space and still be fine.

But my own experience confirms the record here, that will strong play the Russians are somewhat better off, overall. They just get chances to put the thing away, earlier, if things break their way.
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