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Subject: A few pics of our first Bolt Action game rss

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David J Schaffner
United States
Saint Louis
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We played our first Bolt Action skirmish yesterday, and here are a few pics I snapped in between the action.

Soviet armor on the main axis of advance:



Confident Soviet commanders surveying the enemy movements:



The Russians mounted a late-game counterattack, which the Germans were able to put under effective fire, and quickly destroyed:



I find the Bolt Action rules play as others have already described them to around the web, as being fun, quick playing, and easy to pick up.

Afterall, whenever the buds leave with smiles on their faces, you know you have a winner!
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David J Schaffner
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A few more incoming photos from our recent Bolt Action game. These taken by bud Rich W.

(yeah, some of us may look old and grey but we're all young at heart)







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Mike Ganotisi
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Anxiously waiting for more pics. I came really close to buying this game. Have you played, Flames of War? If so, how does it compare to FoW?
 
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David J Schaffner
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Mike, I haven't played Flames of War, but have played WW2 tactical miniatures games using various rulesets for 40+ years. The obvious difference though is that the scope of each game is meant to be different, where troops in Bolt Action represent individuals, and in FOW they're scaled so that a unit stand represents a larger number of troops than is shown. This is probably obvious too, but what this signifies is that each game tries to detail a different scale/scope of WW2 combat. Bolt Action is more tactical than FOW, it's man to man. In Bolt Action infantry figures are still required to function as military units through maintaining distance intervals between themselves or between other units, but otherwise the individual infantry models are moved by themselves, allowing them to be finely placed within the terrain on the game board, and taking benefit of cover and line of sight opportunities by their placement.

As the authors have mentioned, Bolt Action is meant for forces no larger than multiple infantry platoons, and maybe up to a company's worth (again playing at a 1 to 1 ratio for men, and any attached vehicles, and heavy weapons support). There's probably going to be an effort to see how big the scenarios and forces can get in Bolt Action, before the game system collapses under the weight of the "lead" to push, but out of original intent, the rules are meant to be played with a finite number of units so that gamers aren't trying to do too much with the game (and possibly end up disappointing themselves in the process).

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Joe Wagle
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Great photos. I'm excited to try the game out. I have seen some AAR's where people used FOW miniatures and terrain, but used the simpler, more streamlined Bolt Action rules to good success.
In addition to using models they already had, these participants mentioned that the smaller scale made Bolt Action's short weapon ranges more palatable.
Obviously this messes up squad cohesion rules, but people seemed willing to chuck it...

Thoughts or feedback on ranges and using FOW models with Bolt Action rules?
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David J Schaffner
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Joe, that's a great point! With the proliferation of gamers that have Flames of War figures, some naturally will want to see if they can use them with Bolt Action too. If they're multi-figure mounted stands as for FoW, I guess the easiest way to use them would be to track casualties by "capping" the dead figures. Also, because of the "chit pull" activation system which Bolt Action uses (by individual squads/teams/or vehicle), the system doesn't get overwhelmed when firing occurs, and this mght work well for player's wanting to use their multi-figure stands, in that there's little risk that playing with FoW-type stands might overwhelm the gameplay.

The figures in my pics above are 20mm, which I've had for a long time just waiting to use with a ruleset like BA. Before the rules were released, a few beta testers commented on the forums that with the manageable firing ranges, and with the 1-inch or less spacing requirement between figures rule, that 15-20mm figures might actually look better on the tabletop than the 28s [crowded together]. Of course already having collected 20s, I latched onto this as being very encouraging!
 
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Mikko Asikainen
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Hi, nice table!

I got my copy of bolt action recently and with a single readthrough found some odd things. Like with the points system that a medium machine gun costs the same than 4 riflemen and yet the four riflemen seem to be the better deal. They shoot the same amount with less range but more durability and lots more mobility. I haven't tried the rules yet but it just left me wondering. Apart from points, do you think MG's are handled properly? Is an infantry squad charging headlong to a MG nest over open ground doomed to die as they would be in real life?
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David J Schaffner
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I'd say just organize your troops based on wartime tables of organization for the time period, or use the rough guidelines presented in the rules book to configure your force mix.......then try to design scenarios you think will present interesting battle problems to be gamed out on the tabletop.

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