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Subject: Suitable as a travel game ? rss

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Peter Kossits
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I'm very excited at finally having scored a copy of this game. I've been watching the excellent 10 part walkthrough on YouTube and this seems to be a near perfect solo infantry game. I used to play a lot of ASL with the Solitaire ruleset, but this seems to be much more realistic and intense and portable.

Just wondering though if people think this is a suitable game to pack up and play in hotel rooms during a business trip? I usually bring a boardgame with me to play as an alternative to watching TV or playing games on my laptop (I'm usually sick of computers by the end of the day and it's a joy to do something else). I took Hornet Leader with me on a recent trip and it did admirably at filling an hour or two most evenings.

The footprint of Fof looks perfect - not too big.
But, I have a feeling that I usually won't be able to finish a game in one session. Is it possible to do a teardown, noting where everything is and then do a quick setup the next day to pick it up again?




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Paul Franklin
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With some work, you could rebuild it but it's not suited for it. If you have 2-3 hours to kill for a single session, then it would work. Otherwise I might suggest something from the Field Commander Series.
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Mats Lintonsson
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I would not say this is a good game for traveling. Missions are usually a lot more than 1-2 hours (if that is what you have per evening). And it would not be convenient to make a note of all cards, counters etc, take it down and set it up again the day after - there are just too many items.

I second the Field Commander recommendation above.
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Peter Kossits
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Thanks for the answers. Looks like my goal should be to get fluent enough with the system to be able to play in 2-3 hours or so. I may also look into seeing if the Vassal module could be used to more quickly save a snapshot of the game, rather than noting everything down on paper.

I almost brought FC Rommel on my last trip but I find it a little bit too dicey. If your first few attacks don't go well you lose very quickly. Hornet Leader stays fun even if you screw up your first few missions. Napoleon would have been fantastic to bring but the box/package is just too big.
 
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Mats Lintonsson
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peterk1 wrote:
I almost brought FC Rommel on my last trip but I find it a little bit too dicey. If your first few attacks don't go well you lose very quickly. Hornet Leader stays fun even if you screw up your first few missions. Napoleon would have been fantastic to bring but the box/package is just too big.


Agree that FC Rommel is a bit dicey. I enjoy FC Napoleon the most of the three games in the FC series. Far from as dicey as Rommel, and much less static than Alexander. And with so many cool campaigns! But I see your point, for traveling, the box might be a little too big.
 
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I have some ideas and suggestions, but first...how much are you willing to do in order to play FoF on the road?
I'm assuming you really want to play Fields of Fire (not another game) so you are willing to take the time, before you travel, to set yourself up for success.

It can be done but you might need to consolidate some charts and other components, depending on your luggage/storage space.

So to that end, assuming you start with Normandy and that you only want to learn the system (and won't need to play out a full campaign, yet..)
Cards: you need the Action Card Deck and about half the Normandy Terrain Deck. You should probably look through the terrain deck and pick out 12-15 cards and 2-3 hills.
12-15 cards will let you setup small grids of 3x3, 3x4, 3x5 training missions.

Counters: 4 baggies: US Army OOB, German OOB, "Red" markers (PDF, VOF, etc), "Green"&"Blue" markers (LAT's, Assets, CP, Cover,PC etc..)

Charts & Tables: depending on your luggage and storage space you can either...bring the items that originally shipped with the game or...take some time to consolidate things on custom made player aids.

Cards, Counters, Charts...what am I missing?

Oh..I have a planning map/game save pdf file you can use, check it first and let me know.
You might even be able to use it instead of terrain cards too.

http://dl.dropbox.com/u/16275840/FOF_Planning_Map2.pdf
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Roger Taylor
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I second using Vassal. You have to bring hard copies of the charts and tables, but that's ok.
 
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Edward Rustin
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tc237 wrote:
I have some ideas and suggestions, but first...how much are you willing to do in order to play FoF on the road?
I'm assuming you really want to play Fields of Fire (not another game) so you are willing to take the time, before you travel, to set yourself up for success.


I'd assume that if someone's willing to take Hornet Leader, some preparation and components won't be too much of a problem!
 
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Gene Baker
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Games with dragons, spaceships, and bears aren’t wargames. Call them conquest games or strategy games or crap but they aren’t wargames.
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peterk1 wrote:

The footprint of Fof looks perfect - not too big.


You can probably make it more compact than I, but when I’m playing FoF one card table doesn’t hold everything. I probably have the equivalent of two card tables with FoF stuff.
 
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Peter Kossits
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Yes, Hornet Leader was pretty much as big as I would go. The thing sucked up pretty much all of my carry-on space on the plane. But it was worth it to not have the box crushed. I can't imagine FoF will be a bigger box than Hornet - my copy should be arriving this week, but I haven't seen it yet.

I'm mainly interested/concerned about tear-down/set-up between sessions.

I'm wondering if using an empty counter tray that mirrors the board would help in getting re-setup quickly. Just dumping the counters on the map/cards into a counter tray in the correct order between sessions might work.

But you know...worst case scenario....I leave it set-up at the hotel and leave the cleaning lady a nice tip not to touch it! If that doesn't work, then booby-traps.




 
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Edward Rustin
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peterk1 wrote:
But you know...worst case scenario....I leave it set-up at the hotel and leave the cleaning lady a nice tip not to touch it! If that doesn't work, then booby-traps.


There's enough detail in FoF that it would probably teach you how to lay the traps as well!
 
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Matt R
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Tony has some good ideas and I never thought about playing "training" missions with a simple 3x3 (or even 2x2) grid of cards. Perhaps only playing with a single platoon with an attachment of say a heavy machine gun and/or a single mortar team? That's honestly an excellent way to suggest how to teach yourself this game. You wouldn't have the worry of an entire company and just give yourself a reasonable objective like taking a single objective within say 5 turns of whatever. And the best benefit of doing this is you definitely should be able to complete your "training" scenario within an hour or two along with less setup and cleanup.

Could even use terrain card setups of your choice. Since its been a long time since I've played this game I may dinker around with this myself.

Good suggestion Tony. Also don't forget about bringing equipment counters - may not need to bring everything but you will want radios/telephones, smoke, flares, etc. Probably some ammunition counters. If you wanted to practice with various vehicles could bring along some of those too.

Oh - to add to Tony's ideas, when I was traveling a lot more a few years ago to help prevent "wear and tear" on the cardboard player's aids I made photocopies to bring with me. That way if they got damaged or lost - no big deal. Cardboard doesn't always travel well...
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Matt, don't want to derail the thread anymore but you can search the forums to find that we've posted a few times over the years ideas and suggestions for some type of mini "training" scenarios, starting from just learning how to throw grenades and call for fire, moving up to your platoon suggestion and finally culminating in a company level training mission.
Don't know if anything will ever came of it, maybe everyone is just waiting on the 2nd edition rules before they jump into the game again.
 
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Matt R
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Thanks Tony. I've been away from FoF for a couple of years and I actually only browsed BGG only occasionally for the past couple of years as well. I've only been "back" on BGG reading it much more regularly for the past couple of weeks. I also broke out my copy of FoF last night and started playing on Mission 2 in Normandy. I forgot about the trick of breaking off an assault team to move forward and instead sent in all of 2nd platoon into a woods card on row 1 in the first turn. I also had my platoon leader drop smoke (keyed to seek cover even though they couldn't move into it) to help offset the +2 NCM for exposure. I figured "Eh - what's the chances of running into something dreadful on the first turn with "No Contact" and a potential C contact?

I ended giving up when all of 2nd platoon (except for 2/2 squad and my bazooka team) got reduced to a pathetic group of LATs and casualties after a German LMG team popped up out of their foxholes at point blank range and opened up on them from the same card. Couldn't even fire back as the LMG came into play "unspotted". I mean 2nd platoon got ripped apart - even the platoon leader became a whimpering, quivering mass of flesh.

So yeah - I really forgot just how brutal this game can be. But in a good way of course... blush
 
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Ken Latall
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There's a solitaire ruleset for ASL? I know you can buy a Solitaire ASL game, but you also had to buy a lot of expansions for it and I thought it wouldn't be worth it because there would only be a handful of scenarios for it.

Please tell me anything you can about what you can do with the solitaire version.

Thanks and have a great day!
Ken
 
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Peter Kossits
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The Solitaire ASL system is here
http://www.boardgamegeek.com/boardgameexpansion/7587/solitai...

You do need to buy a bunch of other stuff for it (mapboards/modules) but I ended up playing it exclusively on my computer using VASSAL and everything was available in there.

It's pretty much endless in terms of scenarios and replay value and the campaign games are quite a lot of fun. On the downside, it also has a very high set-up/play ratio and some of the mechanics can be quite tedious. It's also a lot more random than FoF is - you often get illogical behavior from the enemy that is logical or unit set-up that is quite wonky.

2-3 years ago I would have recommended it, but these days I think you can get better solo gaming bang for the buck elsewhere. Still - tactical games that can be played solo are few and far between; might be worth looking into.

Before I stopped playing, I was in the process of designing a little 101st Airborne on D-Day campaign using the SASL solitaire system, so it's quite flexible if you like making up your own stuff.

http://forums.gamesquad.com/entry.php?1089-AAR-101st-Airborn...

There's a lot more discussion about SASL on the Gamesquad site if you're curious about it.
 
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