Interesting article on Blood and Bridges WaW from LocknLoad

The guys at the boardgaming life : http://www.theboardgaminglife.com/ArticlePages/wawbab_rv1.aspx?GameID=52

did a terrific review of the Blood and Bridges Module from LocknLoad Publishing. Really well written and could be used as a rules summary for those who cared to do so.  A minor error in the article got me thinking about tactics in the Cold War era.

First the error, two different attacks occur, and they are treated differently yet in the same terrain and same circumstances. Let me show you what I mean.

Scenario 2:

First Opportunity Fire

The BRDM-AT rolls 4 dice and scores hits on rolls of 4 or greater. The rolls are 2, 3, 4, 4 for a total of 2 hits on the top Scimitar. The Scimitar has an inherent Armor Value of 1 with a Save Number of 6, so he may roll one die and needs a roll of 6 to “save” a hit. As the Scimitar is in a City Ruins hex, it gets two additional die rolls. It will not benefit from Concealment because it was moving at the time it was attacked. (Note that the maximum number of extra dice hard/armored units can accumulate is 2, so the Concealment benefit would have been disallowed anyway.) Unbelievably, the British player rolls a 5 and two 6s for two saves, and escapes unscathed! The Soviet BRDM-AT is marked Ops Complete and the British Impulse continues.

Second Opportunity Fire:

The six rolls are 1, 1, 2, 4, 4, 6, for a total of 3 hits! The target (the Scimitar) has an Armor Value of 1 but gets an additional die roll for the City terrain defensive bonus. The HQ is no help on defense, and there will be no Concealment bonus because he was moving at the time he was attacked. So the Scimitar gets two dice and must roll 6s to save hits. Finally, the luck of the Lancers has run out as the British player rolls 2 and 5. Now he must absorb all three hits, which totally eliminates the Scimitar (i.e. the 1st hit Disrupts, the 2nd hit causes the unit to be reduced, or flipped, and the 3rd hit is “lights out”).

WHICH IS CORRECT???>>> EDIT: -both are  one is city ruins, one is city. The good news is it got me writing about WaW! <<<<

In the first attack the Author rolls 3 dice. in the 2nd 2 dice. This makes a big difference.

6.16 is an easy rule to miss.

The correct approach is the second one.  The end result is the same fortunately.  So why the post?

Its important in this game given the deadliness of the equipment.  The other reason is that when you you get a chance to shoot you want it to count.

I can’t imagine the carnage that would have occurred  if this war had broken out. The post Vietnam war/Post Six day war capabilities of armour and anti- tank weapons is amazing and World at War really bring this out.

A note about tactics.

Tactically speaking when I played this scenario,

I thought the best strategy was to sit back and get close and personal with the AT loaded BMP’s, and mitigate the longe range effect. The T-80’s are tough as well.  The Striker is the only unit that has any decent range and it is best placed as a last stop  gap measure to prevent the  Soviets from making the exit hexes.

The woods on the road to Irlich are a good for that last gap stopping point, whilst hanging back in the rough near the bridges allows long range shooting to happen to support the weaker British Royal Lancers. Using the woods and FASCAM can help to.  This means that the T-80’s need to close and those thing skinned BRDM AT’s BMP2’s can’t take much damage, so they will be wary trying to close.

In my scenario the Lancers got real lucky with a Fog chaos marker! I made an error (God forbid!) with LOS for Arty missions, which slowed the Soviets a bit more than they would normally have.

Never underestimate the power of Command.  This is a subtle feature of WaW.  You may think that rolling around with the lame duck HQ on your stack is worthless.  You would be wrong.

Besides Rally, In-Out of Command status the primary benefit is the additional dice for attack that the HQ provides. I think Harvey demonstrated that ably in his post. To me this represents the proximity of command, the decisiveness of the commander, the more nuanced use weapon systems, versus the rote war manual learnings of the regular troops.  This also plays out in the fire ratings for NATO forces. Most NATO weapon systems have a “4 to hit”, and at least 3 dice. Only the best Soviet units (T-80’s ) are going to approach that level of effectiveness.  That speaks to both technology and training. No doubt as the T’s improved the quality of the Tank Commander improved along with it.  Nato forces had always been trained to fight independently, expecting overwhelming odds and were practiced in the art of shoot and scoot.

Good stuff! Thanks Harvey.

2 thoughts on “Interesting article on Blood and Bridges WaW from LocknLoad

  1. Hipshotau,

    Glad you enjoyed the article! Thanks for the kind words; I enjoy the game as much as you seem to. However, I don’t believe there was an error in the article. The two target units are not in the same terrain; one is in “City” and one is in “City Ruins”. City Ruins has a 2-dice Defensive Bonus, whereas City only has 1-die. Also, the maximum that you quote (6.1.6) applies only to the “Defensive Bonus”. The unit’s “Armor Factor” is added to this as well (see 6.1 – “… its owner rolls a number of dice (d6) equal to the target’s Armor Factor PLUS THE DEFENSIVE BONUS…). And, for armor units, the Defensive Bonus is capped at 2 dice.

    In the article, the unit in City Ruins had an Armor Factor of 1 to which the Defensive Bonus of 2 was added, for a total of 3 dice.

    Unless there’s some errata around that I’m not aware of (very possible, since I haven’t really looked much), I think the article example is correct.

    Anyway, I’m obviously a fan of your site, or I wouldn’t have been here to see your comment on our article in the first place! Keep up the good work.

    Regards,
    Mark D.

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