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Subject: Bocage, bocage and more bocage... (Session report and an overview of the game) rss

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Skeeve Yoshikawa
United States
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I played this game with an old gaming buddy two days ago.
I played the Allies and lost badly.
We played the basic game, even though the copy we played was the expanded TSR edition.

It's a very interesting situation. The British have to take Caen and are up against the strongest part of the German line.
The Americans have to punch through in the bocage and then race down to the SW corner of the map and exit to grab Cherbourg. The Germans try to tie down the Allies as much as possible before exiting.

The game reproduces the hard fighting in the bocage and in Caen very well.
Bocage gives the defender a column shift and the Germans get column shifts for units in the command radius of their headquarters.
The combat results are a bit favored to the defenders and are given as a -/-.
The number to the left of the slash is the effect on the attacker and the number to the right of the slash is the effect on the defender.
You can either take the number as a step loss or you can retreat that number of hexes.
It's really frustrating for the Allies to get a good odds and the Germans just go back a hex.

Weather determines the air and also German movement.
Clear weather reduces all German movement to one-third, due to air interdiction.
Overcast reduces all German movement to two-thirds, and Storms allow full German movement.
In addition, the weather determines Allied air support points, which are column shifts for them
and they are allowed one carpet-bombing attack, for the game, against one hex during clear weather.

Allied logistics are handled with command points.
These command points allow an attack. If you've used all your command points, you can't attack.
The one exception to that is overrun attacks.
If you have all 3 elements of a mechanized or armor division in a hex, you make make an overrun attack in the movement phase.
You can't use air to help the overrun odds, but it does help the Americans greatly.
The Germans also have the ability to make overruns as well.

Finally, each side can move their mechanized and armored units in a movement phase after the combat phase.
It allows you to exploit those holes you manage to punch through the enemy's line.

Looking back on the game I played, I spent too much time taking Caen and trying to destroy Germans with the Americans.
I think I had a couple bad die rolls at critical times, but thoroughly enjoyed it.

All in all, this is an excellent wargame and am looking forward to playing it again.
I'm kicking myself a bit for not buying it all those years ago.
If your looking for a really good wargame on the Normandy breakout,
find a copy of this old SPI gem.

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Derek Gillam
United Kingdom
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Yes a great game, updated in a recent S&T double mag.

-racing down the map to grab Cherbourg.

Er no! They are racing to grab the Brittany ports!
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