I’ve been looking at trees. What trees to use for Operational level wargaming in my draft Deep Battle rule set. Since my Experiment on a 4 Inch Hex Grid I’ve gone for increasingly smaller terrain including Tiny Hills and Monopoly Buildings. And now I find my normal size 15mm trees are too big for the look I’m striving for, so I’ve gone for copses of small trees – trees that would normally be used for 5mm (1/300th) or 6mm (1/285th) scale wargames.
During World War II the Axis powers tried and failed to defeat the Soviet Union. The Germans called this theatre the “Eastern Front Campaign” or “Russian Front Campaign” but to the Soviet citizens it was the “Great Patriotic War”. The battles on the Eastern Front constituted the largest military confrontation in history. Fighting in this theatre was characterised by unprecedented ferocity, wholesale destruction, mass deportations, and immense loss of life variously due to combat, starvation, exposure, disease, and massacres. Fighting lasted from the Axis invasion of the USSR (22 June 1941) to until the Soviet capture of Berlin (9 May 1945).
Operational Terrain 8 – Monopoly Buildings to Fit 4 Inch Hexes
I’ve been doing some more musing on Operational level wargaming for my draft Deep Battle rule set. My Experiment on a 4 Inch Hex Grid forced me to get Tiny Hills to Fit the 4 Inch Hexes. Now I’m doing the same thing with buildings. In fact I’m using Monopoly buildings which are more like … Read more
Moscow 1941 – Map on a 60km Square Grid for Deep Battle
I’ve drawn a new table top map for the Battle of Moscow. This time I’ve gone for a square grid with one square per 60 km. This is all part of the agonisingly slow development of my Deep Battle rule set. These rules will be Operational in nature hence the grand scale of the map.
Collective Farm 643 – An O-Group Battle Report
Adam remains keen on ‘O’ Group, and has put together an Eastern Front scenario called “Collective Farm 643”. Chris took the attacking Soviets and I had the defending Germans. Adam was umpire and provide all the kit.
Summary: Over quick. The Soviets took the direct route to the objectives and got hammered.
Using WW2 National Flags as Objectives in Crossfire
I’ve been using flags as my terrain objective markers for a long time. And recently I made some more for New Zealand, UK/GB, India, USA, Germany (replacement), Japan, China and Australia.
Blitzkrieg Commander – Example Soviet Order of Battle
Our recent experiments with ‘O’ Group have got me thinking about a similar set of rules that has been lurking on my shelves: Blitzkrieg Commander (BKC). I’ve got every edition of the rules (1 through 4), yet I have never played it because it was a bit too crunchy (concrete) for my tastes. But it is a credible alternative to ‘O’ Group, so I got it of the shelf and read through it.
I prefer scenarios over pick up battles so I’m trying to wrap my head around how to map official historical orders of battle to BKC OOBs. In this post I play around with a official Soviet historical order of battle for a infantry battalion and see what that looks like in both game scales of BKC. Not that I’m going to use an official OOB for an actual scenario, but this exercise will help me understand which bits of the historical OOB turn into BKC stands and which bits get ignored. And because BKC has two game scales – regimental where a base is a platoon and battalion scale where a base is a squad – I’m going to have to do this twice.
Assault on Kristov – An ‘O’ Group Battle Report 3
Adam and Chris had another go at the ‘O’ Group sample scenario transferred to the Eastern Front. As in our first play test and second play test, “Cristot” became “Kristov” and the Germans were attacking a Soviet defensive position. Adam was keen to have a go himself so took the role of the attacking Germans. Adam also provided rules knowledge, figures, most of the terrain, and narrative for the battle report. Chris was the defending Soviets. I took photos and add some extra thoughts at the end.
3 Round Mac’s Missions – A Three Game Crossfire Campaign
I’ve been looking at Mac’s Crossfire Missions and it occurred to me that the system would be good for a Three Round Campaign. I like campaigns that are short and lead to a clear result and a Three Round Campaign offers those benefits. I’ve used the missions and main force orders of battle from Mac’s Missions v3 to drive the campaign.
KB4R The Swamp – A Crossfire Battle Report
Jamie Wish and Chris Harrod played “The Swamp” (KB4R), the fourth game of Krasny Bor, featuring the Blue Division in an epic Crossfire campaign. The Spaniards were defending the second line – near the Leningrad-Moscow Railway line – against overwhelming odds.
Summary: I thought it would be over in 1 hour, but in an awesome David and Goliath contest Chris’s reinforced company of Spaniards held Jamie’s three battalions of Soviets for 2.5 hours of game time and 7.5 hours of real time. The Spanish defeated the first Soviet battalion but eventually the Soviets ground their way through the Blue Division lines. The time ratio, 2.5 hours of game time in 7.5 hours of real time, demonstrates how grindy it was – not for the faint hearted.
Official Crossfire Supplements – I want to write a couple
I’ve been talking to Arty Conliffe about potential Official Supplements for Crossfire. Official because they have Arty’s blessing and input. I’m thinking about both a commercial scenario book and some freebie booklets. My megalomaniac aspirations for 2022 mean I want to write one of each. There are lots of possibilities and I thought I’m share my thinking.
Assault on Kristov – An ‘O’ Group Battle Report 2
Chris and I had another go at ‘O’ Group sample scenario transferred to the Eastern Front. As in our first play test, “Cristot” became “Kristov” and the Germans were attacking a Soviet defensive position. Adam was umpire and provided rules knowledge, figures, most of the terrain, and narrative for the battle report. I add some extra thoughts at the end.
Musing on Cavalry Base Sizes in Crossfire
I’ve been reading about Soviet cavalry operations on the Eastern Front. And that, of course, has got me interested in expanding my Soviet cavalry collection. But before I invest further, I want to be really, really sure my cavalry basing is correct. The cavalry figures I already have are based on 30x30mm squares, like my infantry. But that is cramped. What to do?
Assault on Kristov – An ‘O’ Group Battle Report 1
Adam Landa was keen to try out ‘O’ Group, so we gave the sample scenario a go but transferred it to the Eastern Front. The objective, “Cristot,” became “Kristov”. We also discarded the tanks and anti-tank guns. I contributed the photos but all words are Adam’s, although I add a few thoughts at the end.
Some Crossfire photos shared by Arty Conliffe
Download Crossfire Freebie 1: Mini-Scenarios
Download Crossfire Freebie 1: Mini-Scenarios. Introductory scenarios for Arty Conliffe’s Crossfire by Steven Thomas and Dick Bryant. Assisted by Arty Conliffe.