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Brave But Futile
#21
Daniel and I seem to have hit a certain rhythm in the campaign. After a turn of resting we have a battle. Needless to say this rhtym can be nerve racking. In turn four I bulked up my front line expecting attacks and receiving none. Daniel had some defensive activations but all in all it was a pretty quiet turn. I had pulled the 2nd SS PG and Pz battalions for replacements and was given the time and CPs to do quite a bit.

Turn 5 saw Daniel unleash Cobra but I had pulled most of my front line units away from Bayeaus and Carpiquet expecting Cobra to hit. Daniel also attacked with a huge force requiring 93 CPs. My single defending battalion was hoping to escape after it had lost 20% but was encircled by AFVs and only escaped with 1/3 of its force and none of its leaders.

Overall, though, I have to feel that my position is pretty strong after five turns. The Allies hold 6 locations and must pick up at least four more to win. I have one battalion badly hurt but the others are all at 85% or better and none of my support companies have taken losses as yet. In addition, I have 16 CPs in my pocket to mvoe forward. Daniel has superior forces but will find CPS to be harder to come by in future turns and now that Cobra his big effort has been used.

We both expect some nasty, gritty battles coming up and I think we are both surprised that the tempo of the campaign has been sort of sedate after the rush of the first turn.


Attached Files
.docx   Brave But Futile Turn 5 Bayeaux.docx (Size: 15.28 KB / Downloads: 12)
.xlsx   Brave but Futile Campaign Turn by Turn.xlsx (Size: 52.33 KB / Downloads: 11)
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#22
I am remiss in posting the conclusion of our campaign. It ended, I am afraid, on Turn 6 as a large Allied assault to Carpiquet ran into three German battalions, reinforced with a company of SS Tigers. The Allies attacked heavily and did manage to cause some losses but suffered heavily and ultimately had to retire from the field. The carnage and lack of progress as well as the knowledge that the one German battalion that had taken substantial losses was being rebuilt in reserve cause Eisenhower to pull that letter out of his pocket and deliver it to the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

In the end, the Germans held 13 locations at the end of turn 6 and the Allies held six. With a need to capture 4 more locations and a low stockpiles of CPs it was apparent that the German line would not buckle to the extent needed to permit an Allied victory.

I enjoyed the play with Daniel quite a bit. I find the campaigns provide the opportunity to have some operational feel to the game. It is HIGHLY abstratcted so there could be a lot of debate about the process and the CP (campaign point) stockpiles and costs for various activities, however that is all about refinement of what is basically a sound mechanic.

Be aware that the scenario construction process provides a strong benefit to the defender while the activation process can result in a very powerful weapon to the attacker that will feel artificial to those used to a well developed PG scenario. Indeed there is a potential for a massive imbalance in the scenarios. Typically Daniel and I knew who would "win" a scenario before it started but the campaign was in flux throughout.

I have not looked too closely at the solitaire version of the campaign and might try that to see how I fare and how the mechanic for solo play works. In any event, I am glad that we played this through and will look for other applications of the campaign structure.

I apologize for not having the writeup and map available - my computer had a hiccup and we are currently working on a backup.
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#23
It looks like a quick ending to the campaign, but it looks like it was liked by all players. I had notice some of the same comments that you had made, regarding massive amounts of units in the battles. I do believe the defenders benefit from the campaign in the Ivy Division as well. Not sure about the others such as Cassino, C&C2. Husbanding the troops is a definite skill that needs to be mastered with campaigns. Eventually, I will finish the solo Ivy Division when I get some free time.
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#24
The skill set necessary to plan the campaigns successfully is very different than that for playing scenarios. Daniel and I found ourselves often in hopeless situations waiting out the 20% loss rule in order to abandon the field. On the other hand, that was indicative of our success in framing the battle, multiple times. That is a very different outcome than playing the C&C campaigns (I have played through the Polish campaign solo with the leader characters and had a great time) where the play is quite balanced with each scenario having its own quirks but force husbandry doesn't enter the picture!
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#25
Sounds like it was a fun, if different style of game. Seems more historical in that the outcome of a good attack or strong defense is known more easily, but the weaker side is trying to get maximum out of its units, while saving force for another day.

Great stuff. Thanks for the write ups!
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#26
Glad to do it. At this point there are four of this type of campaign in the PG universe, Panzer Lehr (Brave but Futile), Winter Soldiers (the Ivy Campaign), Hammer & Sickle and Patton's Nightmare. I know that Alan is fighting a solo campaign now and I would be very interested in any other campaign players' experiences.
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#27
Matt, There are two more, one in Cassino, which I believe was the first, and there is another is C&C2 for Normandy.

I hope to have my next installment of the Ivy Division sometime over the Christmas break.
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#28
I was thinking of the location based campaigns, not the hex control ones.
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