Two very intense sessions of NATO Div. Commander yesterday.
We had breaks for work calls and such but in essence we went Noon to Midnight for two scenarios.
NDC has a long lead time for setup, but the game play is pretty quick once you get into a rhythm. It took a bit of digging to get Operational Intel correct and ‘rationalize’ the process down to something meaningful. Many sections of the rules are clear, but the OpInt stuff is not.
I also found that killing HQ’s is really hard, possibly too hard.
The Game rewards good maneuver, and smart attacking using combined arms [Air/Arty/Signal/Eng]+ Armour and Inf. Something tells me that the Controller version of the game would be potentially more rewarding than competition, as it is quiet easy for the opponent to shift axes, of defense to block or thwart time based objectives.
We also found a number of setup errors in Scenarios and TO/E charts, none of which were insurmountable.
As Michael said – “cracking good time” in a fantastic setting.
This scenario pits a ‘theoretical’ 3 regiment Mechanized Infantry formation, sans Divisional Support points [ which spoiler alert – really hurts the scenario.] . A full US division awaits the Soviet attack. This is a knock drag out, kill or be killed fight, higher VPs for HQ kills. This makes them a big target.
The setup strangely calls for the US divisional HQs to be placed all forward. We agreed that was an error and allowed the HQ’s to be placed rearward and the entire scenario scrunched up a bit. Random entry places two regiments close together while the third one is 20 odd hexes away. The Soviets close to attack looking for an overwhelming quick kill and to draw the US forces into the locking Zones of Control.
This may have been more than sub optimal!!! The US immediately reacted by drawing in its defensive circle and pushing units forward to encounter the Soviets. The Soviet lead unit is forced to use Admin mode movement and make an attack as soon as it hits a US ZOC. The use of weaker unit as the lead unit was not ideal. If I played again, I think I would pack a punch on round 1 of the offensive situation.
Upon review we did make one error which was allowing the US to use its full movement rate on Turn 1!
By end of turn 1 I assumed that the US would attack my Northern Sector, but they held off. This left me with a plan.
The Forces in the North, swung around and drove deep behind the US and attacked both DISARTY and 1/8 Brigade HQ!!
Stunned the US react quickly to this and swarm my force. I lost count of the MP’s and probably should have had one crack at the 1/8, but decided it was better to be a good sport….STUPID STUPID boy.
DIVARTY rolls a 1 and dies. But 1/8 lingers, we kill of a swag of CSP points [wierd concept..but I get it], I’d kind o prefer to kill the 1 step unit and have it not be able to be re constituted for a 1d6/2 turns or some such. Or have all CSP [Combat Support Points] 1/2 for the duration of the scenario (3 days). The HQ only takes one turn to rebuild and costs you 1 T/O level of a unit the next turn. Given the high value of them for VPs I felt it was really just a bit too hard to kill them… a venus fly trap for the Soviets.
The tide turns quickly!
The swift US reaction knocks out all but 1 or 2 T/O levels in an entire Regiment, with judicious play they will be dead by the end of turn 4 and by the end of turn 6 the Regimental HQ will also be kaput.
I graciously concede to Mikes superb game play.
This scenario needs a lot more Soviet units… There is no way a Division is not going ot crush these under powered Regiments unless there is some strong CSP support. It needs Air and Arty allocated to it at the least and likely a Regiment of Tanks to boot. A good scenario for both sides to learn attack and defense.
Tune in for some more and see the Soviet defense in action against a savage Spoiling Attack in Scenario #33, up next.