Here is a first look at the OCS title that explores the Exporter Operation in the Middle East in ’41.
See articles here all images sourced from here: http://www.awm.gov.au/histories/second_world_war/AWMOHWW2/Army/Vol2/
The game is a similar scale to bits of DAK and the time scale (per turn) is about the same as TBL and Sicily…but you know all that if you have read the back of the box or been online.
I wanted to focus on the strategy aspects of the title without reading the player notes and all that stuff, to see if we can work out what the Vichy should do, and what the Commonwealth may/might do.
Above is the June 8th at start positions. You can tell first off that this is a highly distributed arrangement and a sparse set of forces for both sides. With warfare conducted in difficult terrain and climate for that matter.
A little further south the CW (Commonwealth) has more Brigades of tough Indian forces that have potential to cause trouble in the Eastern desert regions of the map (right side)
In order to assess what the CW may do we need to know what the Victory conditions are.
First up, the thick banded lines on the map below are either worth 2 VPs or a Sudden Death Victory location! The rest of the yellow circles are worth 1 VP. The challenge for both sides is to accrue the minimum for a Marginal Victory at worst which for the Vichy is 8 VP and 10-11 for the Commonwealth.
Based upon the map below we can see the easy early pickings for the CW side would garner them 3 VP picking up the Southernmost locations. A further 3 VP can be had by pressing the center and taking Ain Trez to the East.
For the Commonwealth to accrue a minor victory they require Damascus and the six locations above (bound by the yellow box) OR Damascus and Damur + 4 of the locations inside the Yellow Box.
If that was achievable then it is likely that El Masna would fall for 2 VP (12.20), facilitating a major collapse, as the Rayak airbase is just then a few hexes away and a Sudden Victory highly likely!
Sudden Death Victory is a very real threat to the Vichy in this scenario. Should the enemy break through and block supply to a ‘victory hex’ it is game over. Or if they are able to place an in Trace Supply unit in or through the victory hex it is also game over.
Where will the CW Generals focus?
More on the CW plan in our next post.