Monday, August 12, 2013

Bolt Action at CMH

At this weekend's Colorado Military Historian (CMH) monthly club meeting Doug and I put on a couple of demonstration games.  One to introduce more members to this very nice game system for WWII and the next to get us some practice when we put this on at Recruits in September (  Pretty much everything you see on the table is from Doug's massive collection.  I think the only thing on the table that was mine were the two buildings.  

Anyway, we had a blast.  The system is simple, retains the WWII flavor and with the blind draw movement it can be a little exciting when you are praying to get the next move to either get your tank out of the way of a Tank Destroyer or you have troops rushing out in the open looking for cover.

So here are a few pictures from both games.  Note, the first game we used only infantry squads to get used to the rules and the second battle we added armor to get a feel for that too.

Nate and Doug on the American Side
In the first battle we went infantry vs infantry.  Everybody caught on pretty quickly on how the rules sequence and basic mechanics worked.  As a result of their understanding these concepts their tactics also changed..
Rob watching the sly Americans closely.
Aaron checking on Line of Sight which is important in Bolt Action. 
Line of Sight - as I mentioned it is very important having LOS to your targets.  So important that I am either going to build or order some gaming periscopes.

Warner and Aaron watching the American advance.

Move distances are pretty easy to remember.  6" Advance
and 12 inch run for infantry.
When you ADVANCE you fire with a penalty (unless you are Americans), or if you RUN you cannot fire.

Aaron (German Marder) is spotting my Bazooka Team whose is down a man.
Firing is also pretty simple to figure out.  You move (-1), over half your weapon distance (-1), terrain (-1), small team in the case of my Bazooka team (down one man) (-1).  So hitting a small team at distance and in terrain like a Bazooka, MG or sniper team is quite a difficult shot.  In this case I was able to scramble off the board with my Bazooka.  

Funny note.  I finally got my Bazooka line up for a shot.  But, they took fire from two different German squads to his front which put pin markers on him.  When I gave him the order to fire, you have to roll a morale test minus number of pin markers you have. Needless to say, he failed, he was receiving too much fire so hit the dirt which is symbolized by changing his order to DOWN.  No shot, but as I mentioned above regarding all those modifiers.  A unit under DOWN orders subtracts another (-1) to makes them even harder to hit.  So we didn't get a shot off at that Marder who was hosing us down with MG fire too.

We had one close call when Aaron's Marder stormed out of cover and took a shot at Andrew's Sherman.  Aaron hit the Sherman causing one pin marker, then he failed to penetrate the armor with a low roll.  Whew!  Andrew on his next turn was going to take his shot but since he had a pin marker he had to roll morale.  Sure enough, he failed and had to back up with a DOWN marker on his vehicle.  Next turn however, we got the first die.  Andrew then moved back up to engage the Marder.  He got the shot and destroyed the Marder into it's already thin armor.

Werner, Aaron Doug and Andrew, we all had a blast playing Bolt Action!

Each battle brought up some questions that we are reviewing to make sure we get it right next battle.  I was so thrilled with Bolt Action at Historicon at this meeting we had a Flea Market and I purchased some already painted Americans for my own forces and still looking for Germans!  



Stuart said...

For LOS we use the cameras on our phones and take a snapshot. The camera eye is often the right height too. And the camera doesn't lie!

Dan said...

Didn't even think of that. Nice, I will have my ipad mini and iphone handy...