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Continued Explorations of Normandy Wargaming

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This topic contains 59 replies, has 6 voices, and was last updated by  jamesevans140 1 year, 9 months ago.

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    Cult of Games Member

    This past weekend, my friends @brucelea and @damon and I got together in a web conference and played an epic game of Panzer Leader that actually tried to recreate the landings of 50th Northumberland Division on “Jig” Assault Sector or Gold Beach, commemorating the 75th Anniversary of the Overlord landings.

    The game was a marathon beast, seriously lasting over nine hours.  I have cut and smoothed out three videos of the highlights and posted them below.  Give ’em a peek if you like, I hope you’ll like it (especially Parts Two and Three).  And if you ever want to give historical wargaming on the web a shot (or just hang out and chat as a game is in progress), ping me a PM and we’ll set up a time!


    Part One:  (a little dry at the beginning, honestly, sketching out history, units, setup, and scenario rules).


    Part Two:  (better music, sound effects, much heavier action)


    Part Three:  (awesome finale!)


    • This topic was modified 1 year, 10 months ago by  oriskany.


    Given the month what a great idea as PL is great for for this kind of thing.

    I will be watching the videos a little later when I have a couple off free hours.

    Now the late war Fortress Europe for V4 has been released, @timp764 is chomping at the bit to start doing some Normandy wargaming. I then asked his a question about what was he really interested in Operation Neptune or Overlord? He asked what was the difference. Long story cut short my reply boiled down to Neptune is getting to the beach and supplying it, while Overlord is about getting off the beach while being supplied by Neptune.

    So he asked what the difference would be. My answer was that if we do Neptune it would be about having a detailed map of the board with known fortifications. From this he would need to develop a plan for his forces to take the beach but it would have to deliver his forces in a series of waves. What would you need to arrive first and not have it overwhelmed by the beach defences. The object would be taking the beach. If we do Overlord your forces are deployed on the beach and the object is getting off the beach and taking objectives inland off the beach.


    He has not considered the difference and is excited about designing the landing waves.

    I hope you guys had a great time.


    Cult of Games Member

    Thanks, @jamesevans140 !

    Yeah, the game was great, run on Saturday, June 8.  The videos are obviously only the highlights (no way in hell I was recording / rendering / editing 9.5 hours of video). We slightly delayed the battle reports and videos and didn’t stream it live … I didn’t want to “collide” with the OTT boot camp in any way.

    This game, plus another epic game vs. @brucelea earlier on the Eastern Front has got me fully back into my old favorite, PanzerBlitz / Leader / Arab-Israeli Wars system.

    What I’m building now is a monster game of Panzer Leader for the American landings at Omaha.  That might just be a fun table to build, maybe run a few turns solitaire, I wouldn’t inflict that beast on any of my players (the map is just short of 6 miles / 10 kilometers wide, includes Dog, Easy, and Fox assault sectors, and both US 1st and 29th Infantry Divisions).

    Interesting notes about how you would game Overlord and Neptune differently.

    In Panzer Leader, amphibious operations address a lot of the points you bring up.

    The average board is three miles across, so big enough to handle beaches like Utah, Gold, Juno, and Sword, or half of Omaha (opening brigades / Regimental Combat Teams of ONE division).

    The German player has to set up his field fortifications.  That’s all.  Not his units.  This is the information Allied commanders have, basically overflights of recon planes.

    The Allied player must then stage all his waves in the sea hexes.  Counters are <b>inverted </b>in the hex so the German player can’t see what they are, with the exception of DD tanks.  The map is drawn in such a way so when the Allied player puts down his counters, all waves are set up, with their intended landing hexes.

    Changes are not allowed once this is set up.

    Once all Allied landing units are deployed (again, face down), the German player sets up his actual infantry and artillery and support units.

    On each turn, Allied units in that turn’s wave hit the beach.

    German opportunity fire … mortars and antitank guns can hit Higgins Boats (LCVPs).  The German player can see where the boats are (inverted counters) but doesn’t know what’s in each boat (so no cheesy “cherry picking” the most valuable units).

    Then, roll for drift.  See where each unit really lands.  Don’t hit blocks or mines, or that’s the end of that unit.  Assaults get insanely disorganized right off the bat.

    Hexes that wind up overstacked can be eliminated.

    Allied units come onto the shore.  Any German units that haven’t fired can now do so (MG 42s here …)

    Next turn, rinse repeat.  It gets insanely bloody when units are hit on beach landing hexes, causing wreck counters (more stacking problems) or “Dispersed” (pinned down) causing, you guessed it, more stacking problems.  This is where your beachmasters starts screaming at people, and what you say comes true … you have to get your people off the beach!

    British beaches are actually pretty smooth, though … because not only do they have “funnies” which really make a difference, but also the distance from which they launched their DD Shermans in the water.  British tanks (like two squadrons of the Sherwood Rangers in our Jig/Gold Beach game) usually come on the beach pretty much intact, then engage German infantry and fortifications pretty well because they carry dual purpose guns, HE-FRAG ammo, and by default are already at very close range.

    At Omaha, almost all the tanks sank because they were deployed too far out.  So those infantry of 116th and 16th RCTs are completely exposed beneath German “weiderstandnester” fortifications, as anyone who’s seen Saving Private Ryan can guess.


    Cult of Games Member

    Great stuff, really enjoyed that. 9 hour game is impressive, I usually enjoy a drink when I play but after 9 hours I may have been slurring a little!


    I think the block spacing was fair. It did work out at a 33% casualty rate but then the game finished tight. Perhaps you could have given units hitting a block a saving throw with a pass leaving them dispersed. Or perhaps unable to move for a turn or two. Otherwise it looked fairly spot on. And wasn’t it the Sherwood Forresters? Or was there also a Rangers as well?


    Edit. I just bothered looking it up and I’ve learnt something, there was a Sherwood Rangers Yeomanry there. There was also a Sherwood Forresters as well but they weren’t at D-DAY. I think some were in Italy with US fifth army.

    • This reply was modified 1 year, 11 months ago by  redvers.

    Cult of Games Member

    @redvers – the idea on the block save is actually a really good one.  Spacing blocks every three hexes was too bloody, every four hexes would bee too lenient.  We need a way to get every “3 1/2” if that makes any sense.

    Yeah, my sources have the Sherwood Rangers, or at least two squadrons thereof, part of the lead echelon of 8th Armoured Brigade, attached to 50th Northumberland Division.

    I checked a couple sources on that one because I was also mixed up on the name of the regiment.  Apparently it has changed names at least twice since then, or been amalgamated/combined with other regiments …

    Renamed Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire Regiment

    Amalgamated with the Worcestershire Regiment to form the Worcestershire and Sherwood Foresters Regiment (the one @brucelea mentioned in the video)

    Later, amalgamated with the Cheshire Regiment and the Staffordshire (Prince of Wales’) Regiment.

    So I guess that’s forms the present-day “Mercian Regiment.”

    This is one reason I tend to stay away from a lot of British historical battles, at least if I want to design a “heavy history” scenario.  Their unit names and structure conventions are so damned confusing, at least for someone used to American models!

    Then again, once you master Soviet RKKA ToEs and OOBs for World War II (in Russian, no less), I suppose British organizational structures can seem a little less bewildering.



    Cult of Games Member

    You could of course alternate the block placement so that the gap between the first pair is 3 hexes and then 4 hexes with the next pair. That would deliver a rough 3.5 hex placement without slowing the game down. It would of course create more ideal landing hexes for the Allied player as there would be a golden hex where regardless of the drift, you would not hit any blocks, which may not be ideal.

    Next option would be to introduce a saving throw. Current odds of being destroyed are 1 in 3, which as you point out is perhaps a little on the high side. A 3+ save gives odds of being destroyed as 1 in 9. A 4+ save gives the odds of being destroyed as 1 in 6. A 5+ save gives 2 in 9. And 6+ save gives 5 in 18. So the 6+ save is just slightly better than a quarter, which seems fair. You could also decide that any unit that makes its save starts dispersed.

    I also imagine that Infantry is more likely to survive than tanks, which tend to sink when placed in water. So perhaps you could give Infantry a better saving throw than armoured units. You could take it further and perhaps start some units at half strength to represent the losses. So 1-2 destroyed, 3-4 half strength, 5+ survived but dispersed. But this starts to add increasing complexity to the game and will slow it down.

    British units do seem to change their names, get merged and reorganised more than other countries. I was surprised at Dorsetshire for two reasons. Firstly, because I thought they were called ‘The Dorsets’, but this only really happened after the war. And secondly because while we like to stick ‘shire’ on the end of our county names (Yorkshire, Shropshire, Lancashire etc), Dorset is just Dorset. 🙂 And I’ll leave the digging into Russian unit names with those with the time on their hands!



    Ok finally I have had time to watch the videos. Truly great but bloody game guys, awesome! Down to the last turn, I love these kind of games.

    Watching the British landings, talk about carnage. However I suggest changing Beach Jig to Beach Quoll. A tiny Australian native. If the female with young is threatened in the den by a predator will pick up one of the young and throw it at the Germans, ah predator rather.

    Great job in editing 9 plus hours down to basically 3 half hour videos.

    In the past I have only criticised the Americans releasing their DD too soon. I watched a documentary a while back that surveyed the sunken DDs at Omaha beach then loosely compared to the British. Landing earlier the US faced a stronger current that swept the US DDs faster down beach.

    Hardly without that many exceptions the US DDs were facing parallel to the beach facing their allotted landing point. While the British simply kept their DDs pointing at the beach and landed wherever the current took them.

    So it looks like most of the US DDs could have made it. However the Tank commanders kept their tanks pointing at their landing points. Once they were nearly parallel to the surf the long sides of the skirts were easily collapsed by the rough seas.

    Do this is me saying my previous option was WRONG! I seriously apologise for wrongfully putting the Americans down.

    It is just sad that for lack of a bit more seamen ship so many young heroic men died that day.

    Back a long while ago we played the SPI mega game of D-Day. For a few years we played the single breach scenarios but once we played the full invasion. All the beaches and connecting land on 6 of their largest maps down to platoon level. We had to empty an entire lounge room and took 3 days setting it up, 4 days to play and a week at nights to pack everything back in their trays. I don’t remember much sleep over the 4 days of play. I do remember huge qualities of coke and a small mountain of delivered pizzas. We had to separate the maps so we could play twister while trying to get to pieces just out of reach. We had a great time, but it left us so exhausted we were never interested in playing the full invasion again. So I wish you well on the super Omaha you are thinking about doing.

    One thing I will get around to trying one day is doing Utah. Historians often say that Utah should have been another Omaha except they landed in the wrong place. So it might be interesting to play it out was if they had landed on the correct place, you might want to give this a try.

    To be honest I am trying to avoid doing any anniversary D-Day games at the moment as it is about to be full on for me.

    I am just about to finish the campaign primer for Izium that will lead to 2nd Kharkov and finish with Case Blau including Stalingrad and the Caucasus excursion. After this it is of to Rzhev. Then 43 to Kursk. So I have a huge amount of modelling terrain and expanding my German Army which is normally an ally force to my Finns and not the primary force, but it is fun using PZ-1’s in 44.

    Finally by the end of the month the new gaming surface will arrive. It is made up of 4″ hexes where the angles lock into pegs and be built up or down. It will speed up movement, deciding range and terrain beginning and ends by the hexes. So I will get the best of both worlds, tabletop and hex maps.

    We want to use it in the up coming campaign so the first surface will be a Russian/Finnish winter surface. 😀

    But I don’t what to be washed away again like what happened in the operation Sea Lion project. Hence my reluctance to add D-Day to the list at the moment.

    Thanks to all three of you for sharing your anniversary D-Day game with all of us. I was impressed just how well PL can be played inside a spreadsheet.

    @oriskany can you send me a copy of the explosion graphic you are using. I have a number of MDF explosion makers. Rather than hand painting them I could use that explosion graphic printed up on a decal sheet, then just touch up with paint brush.



    Cult of Games Member


    For the blocks, there are two schools of thought.  I’m looking at the block special rules for the Omaha scenario on  In that game, EVERY hex has a block in it.  So you can’t miss them.  But when you pass through a beach obstacle block  hex you make a roll, 1-3 = OK, 4-5 = Dispersed (pinned), 6 = Killed.  It’s actually more realistic (these hexes are 150-250 meters across, depending on rules version), and these counters are each a platoon trying to make their way THROUGH a hex strewn with these things.

    I went with the way I did for the Gold Beach game because, even though it’s a little less realistic, it added more player agency for my live players (i.e., at least you get to “choose your fate” and select your hex and hope you missed the obstacle).

    But for my Omaha solitaire, I might do it the other way, where it’s ALWAYS up to the dice.

    The reason tanks and infantry get the same chance is because both are units coming out of boats (LCAs, LCIs, LCVPs, or LCTs) that run right up in the surf.

    The exception, of course, are DD tanks, which do not have to make a block check at all.  They have their own power and steering, so land where they want (no drift rules), but might sink when they’re still out in the channel surf (technically, before they’re even placed on the table).

    The ratings for whether DD tanks sink are different, but that’s based on how far the tanks are released from the shore.  The British did a much better job here.

    See, I thought “Dorsets” was just a shortened nickname for “Doresetshire.”  I had Dorsetshire on the parent unit label, but in the video I think I say Dorsetshire and Dorsets interchangeably.  Oh well.

    Soviet WW2 naming conventions aren’t that complicated (1st Brigade, 2nd Brigade, 3rd, etc.)  It’s the way units are changed and replaced.  Which regular unit later became which guards unit, AND WHEN, etc.  Also, so many units are destroyed and re-raised, destroyed and re-raised again, destroyed and re-raised AGAIN.  This drops off sharply after the summer of ‘42 when Soviet unit losses finally started to round the bend.  Also, they use completely different “tree structures” for armored, non-armored, and artillery units, and oh yeah, they made these switches in the MIDST of the war, so you have to track both and remember when the switch-over was made, and it was at different times for different echelon levels (regiment, brigade, division, corps, etc.).

    Oh, and of course, do it in Russian. 🙁




    @oriskany The intricacies of British unit names are rather fun, aren’t they? I love them, and I can rattle off quite a lot, though not as much as I used to, these days. They do all, technically, have ‘numbers’, persay, though that’s mainly where they stand in the line when paraded. Royal Regiment of Scotland on the right and The Rifles or the Gurkhas all the way on the left, if I recall. Though I suppose that is just for the infantry. I’m a bit of a fan of the more ‘personal’ elements of the British Army. I always try, when playing Historical of any period, to find a unit precedent or antecedent to the Middlesex Regiment or the Royal Marines, but that’s because of family connections.


    Cult of Games Member

    @jamesevans140 – I finally have the time required to give this post the reply it deserves.  😀

    Yes, we’ve had good luck lately with Panzer Leader.  Two games have come down to the last turn,  although the game before this one (my Germans vs. @brucelea ‘s Soviets during Manstein’s Backhand Blow Feb-March ’43) might have been even closer because I only had ONE last-ditch attack that HAD to succeed, not three.

    “JIG” was just the “J” alpha code for this assault sector.  For the Omaha game we’re doing (naturally) DOG, EASY, and a little of “FOX” – albeit by accident as happened historically.  😀  The “Q” sector was QUEEN I think, down on Sword Beach.

    Interesting notes about the releases of DD tanks.  I would agree the disasters like we saw with the ill-fated 743rd Tank Battalion going in with 29th Infantry it wasn’t the crews’ fault.  Two companies of 16 tanks each (Baker and Charlie Companies) were going in AHEAD of George and Able Company of the 116th Regimental Combat Team on Dog White and Dog Green beaches, respectively.  So that’s 32 tanks, basically none of them made it.  A/743rd did a little better, landing from with wading trunks as seen in Sicily, from LCTs on Dog Red and Easy Green.  Even these didn’t do that great, they landed late when the tide was deeper and losses were heavy due to surf, beach obstacles, and German fire from strongpoints still not cleared (most especially, Wiederstandnester 62, overlooking Easy Red, near where the American cemetery is located today).

    That eastward current was terrible.  As we saw in the Gold Beach game, whole battalions wound up almost a complete kilometer east of where they were supposed to be.

    A big point that hurt the American DDs was that the commanders simply didn’t trust them, and didn’t trust British advice on how they should be used.  V Corps commander (Lt. General Gerow) outright opposed their use.  So the compromise was to land some of the tanks with DD and some with wading trunks from LCTs as had been proven in Sicily.  The problem is, the point of DD tanks is so you can land them FIRST, and the guns can suppress German defences for the first wave of infantry.  LCT tanks have to land AFTER, those ships are just too vulnerable to German artillery fire.  So the American tanks land divided, with the Germans able to focus fire in one wave and then a second wave later.

    And releasing them so far out meant that they had to fight the current “sideways” as you mention, where the British were able to aim right at the beach points with a much shorter swim.  Even this didn’t really work, for example the two squadrons of Sherwood Rangers were supposed to land at H-Hour-5 on Gold/Jig instead landed H+30 or +45.

    Indeed the fate of 743rd Tank Battalion is tragic, and not just for them.  Again, there were supposed to be 32 tanks on the beach five minutes BEFORE the first Higgins Boat threw down its ramp.  Able Company / 116th Rgt lost 95% of their men in about 30 seconds, three Virginia towns lost their male population of that generation pretty much right then and there.  Just two or three HE-FRAG rounds from some Shermans could have take out or at least suppressed / blinded those MG-42s that were absolutely butchering the men trying to “clear those murder holes.”  If even half of B and C/743rd had made it ashore, the horrific fate of A/116 and G/116 (on neighboring Dog White) could have been largely avoided or at least greatly mitigated.

    That full invasion game of SPI sounds amazing.  SPI didn’t play around, that’s for sure.  I’ve done so far Omaha a few times in Panzer Leader (never the full thing at once in full detail like the game I have coming up), ALL of Juno (that game took about 12-14 hours), and Gold (9.5 hours).  If this Omaha experiment goes well I might set up Sword and eventually Utah (although there I have Gliders, C-47s, and paras for airborne games of the 82nd and 101st).  That will  mean I have done the complete invasion, albeit it pieces.  Maybe smaller actions like Pegasus Bridge, Merville Battery, and Pointe du Hoc can be tackled with Valor & Victory if people are interested.

    That is absolutely correct about Utah.  Had Utah landed in the “right place” (we’re talking about 4th US Infantry) it would have been a lot worse.  I don’t know if it would have been QUITE as bad as Omaha.  Utah has no big bluffs behind it and the German units (709th) defending it were much weaker than the hardened 352nd at Omaha (all these Normandy divisions that begun with “7” are “coastal” infantry divisions, not even really Germans largely, but “volunteer” conscripts from the East).  But the Americans could have had a MUCH tougher fight if they hadn’t hit a basically unoccupied beach, since again, their tanks were doing terribly due to poor decisions by their commanders.

    “After this it is of to Rzhev.”  Oof, you’re not playing around.  That’s a very serious battle, one that is too often overlooked because it was happening more or less in tandem with Stalingrad.  And then Kursk.  Damn, NOTHING’s small about that battle.  I set up ALL of Prokhorovka … yes, ALL … it’s a lot bigger than just 5th Guards Tank Army which was already crazy-reinforced … in Panzer Leader once, the map and counters took two days to build and NO, I did not play it.  A single turn would take a day.  There comes a time when even Panzer Leader is broken.  😀

    Yeah, we’ve been chipping away at “perfecting” playing wargames in spreadsheets for easy play with friends around the world via the web.  Darkstar, Valor & Victory, and Panzer Leader are the favorites, although we’ve also done AirWar C21 and Naval Command during our Falklands run.

    I will send you the graphic of the explosion and some other similar materials we find useful.  The format is .png since we need it with transparent background.

    Thanks again for the great post!


    Cult of Games Member

    @crazyredcoat – I actually like the intricacies of British unit names as well, at least once I finally figure them out for a given battle I’m running / writing.  It adds color, and you really sound like you know what you’re talking about.  😀

    “I always try, when playing Historical of any period, to find a unit precedent or antecedent to the Middlesex Regiment or the Royal Marines, but that’s because of family connections.”

    If there’s any possible way to work in United States Marines, I always do so.  Also, for personal reasons.  I also tend to be drawn to those battles in which they participated.  As we see in the video, I always work in Royal Marine Commandos as well whenever possible.  In this Gold Beach scenario, it’s kind of our one big “cheat” – 47th Royal Marine Commando and Marine Armoured Support Regiment didn’t land until a little later in the afternoon. I pulled them forward in the landing schedule so I could include them in this game of Panzer Leader.  😀

    One way or another, I always try to work in “Marines” of some type or description.



    Thank you @oriskany for taking the time for your truly great reply.

    First off thanks for sending me the explosion graphics plus extras. They will do the job just fine and much appreciated.

    I am a little amused at the moment that hexes are appearing on my table and now soon computer graphic will be on it as well. What kind of altered reality is my table top slipping into? Computer print out units??! I think I am losing it. 😉

    What I liked about the opening of this PL game is that it demonstrated just how easily things could have gone for the British and Canadians. Just one or two oops things go wrong and your paying the ferry man.

    Just like on Omaha there were several oops events. In on way you dislike what your reading, the careless waste of precious life. On the other hand I keep reminding myself that these poor hapless people are in the unfortunate position of having to write the text book while having to get on with it. So it looses blame and just becomes sad with the terrible choices that had to be made on the spot.

    The documentary was a real eye opener. On a slightly lighter not there its a story about a Scottish DD tank commander while still swimming was taking firing. He lost his temper and ordered his gunner to fire the main gun, instantly flipping the tank. For years this had been taken as one of those stories. I even have heard it out hear in Australia. In the documentary in the British sector, sorry I do not remember the beach sector, they did find an upside down DD pointing not at the beach but is the only sunken DD tank facing England. This alone does not prove the story fact, just that it adds possibility to it.

    SPI also made a second mega game, The Film’s Fulda Gap. It was down to platoon level and set in the late 70’s which was near future back then. We never managed to buy a copy of it to much regret. However it was just bad timing. They cost about an average weeks wages back then at $89 a pop. It must be remembered the oil crisis had bitten, high unemployment with few hiring and interest rate had just fine vertical, around 24%.  There was a rumor of a third mega game but SPI folded before it’s release. However Mega D-Day gave us many evenings and weekends of fun and it is a pity we only got to play the full game once. It remains one of my gaming highlights.

    It was via this game we got to known the beach sectors well, Easy, Red, etc. Each beach for the allies had cardboard invasion boards were you placed your units in waves but had to be placed in a beach sector box.

    You know me by now that I am attracted to things that don’t quite fit together properly. Utah for me is one of them. Another Omaha is too often quoted by historians if Utah had landed in the correct sector. I have wargamed this beach many times thanks to SPI’s mega game and other tabletop games as well. As you point out it is not overwatched from either end by enemy fire from the bluffs. Nor does it have as many fortifications and the quality of German troops is as high. Finally far more pockets of airborne are operating closer to the beaches in Utah. Another Omaha, absolute head lines garbage. Yes the casualties would have been higher. However I believe at best higher than the British but less than the Canadians. However the only way to get a clearer idea is to wargame this several times.

    What do you mean that the US had issues using them dam fangled, Wizard of Oz jalopies the god damned British call funnies, that’s a joke in itself. 😉

    I have read a bit on this and the amount of things that float to the surface is anywhere between amusing to shocking.

    First a point of view of one paint brush paints all. What more could these specialist vehicles could achieve above the standard issue. That covers all the funnies and as you say the US has wading kits used in Sicily, Italy and the Pacific. After all you go with the devil you know. The US had a number of standard issue vehicles that could do the job nearly as well as an almost one use only over specialised vehicle. I will not go into the list of the as you and I have gone over these massed mass produced vehicles. This statement holds water when you consider that total wars are won in the factories not the front. Lose 10 Shermans for 1 tiger, not a problem (unless you a crewman of one of those 10 M4’s). While achieving a lodgement at Normandy is a one off event it remains one hell of a hurdle. So slowing down the factory lines just long enough to make these throw away vehicles might have been an investment and a bonus if someone else was happy to make them for you. As it turned out these vehicles came in very handy several times after D-Day. That is on one side and by some of those involved it came down to hatred of the British, Kennedy was not by himself on this feeling. These are the boundaries but there are many objections in between. It remains a friendly taunt from the European Historians over the years. At the time I see it as reasonable the reluctance of the US to embrace the funnies.

    Yes over the next two wargaming seasons there will be a focus on doing the mid war Eastern Front properly. I would be happy to find a Russian play who can tell me what a Direction is. I would once like to be able to tell the difference between a mid war and late war players army other then looking for KVs rather than JS tanks.

    I am not deriding Russian gamers here, I just mourn the loss of history. You are quite right about Moscow blinding out Rzhev. I think of this as Flash-Bangs as in the grenade, they blind and disorientate us from truly great history. They also do not fit well in the A-B-C storyline historians like to give us for “The Russian Campaign”. To be fair if the tried their story lines would look like spaghetti on the plate leaving the reader confused. But battles like Izyum where the Russians had a victory in the field where army corps and front go toe to toe. It was clumsy but has the beginnings of Russian offensive doctrine. Voronezh is almost unheard of nor is its strategic loss understood. Yet time and again truly important battles have been side lined by the Flash-Bangs of Moscow, Stalingrad and Kursk have done. Look how often the strategy of using Rzhev and the Caucasus are used to strip Stalingrad of German reserves for Uranus to go ahead. I admit Hitler kicked a own goal here by trying to hold Tunisia. Like one of the battles I am looking forward to is lost as part of the battles of 2nd Kharkov is the



    Sorry @oriskany I forgot to mention that at some point all games break down. Like when we want to zoom in we prefer using BG at 25mm to sink the battlefield. So we are interested in exactly how a single house was taken in the village. If we wish to zoom out we use a stand of men of a single tank to present a platoon. For our sojourn to the eastern front I have my old favorite Jedko’s The Russian Campaign from 41 to 45 at the ready. A map and counter game going down to only divisional or brigade level. We don’t see a need to zoom in for this campaign. If we do the it will be out with BG.

    What we are always taken by is that there is no set correct answers. By this I mean you can play at any given level of warfare and you will get a different answer. Like if you play Stalingrad and its sounds at the operational level and get some answers. Yet play in a part of Stalingrad at minor tactics and you normally get a completely different answer. This is quite normal as far as we can see. The answers at the minor tactics level must transfer and become a small part to the answers in the tactical with its own issues to answer. It happens again when the tactical is transferred to the operational.

    To me you do seem happiest when bent over a map and the counters are at platoon level.


    Cult of Games Member

    I promise to post replies on this tomorrow … it’s after midnight here and I’ve spent way too many nights lately up way too late.

    Meanwhile, we’re getting ready for a MONSTER game recreating Omaha Beach … ALL of Omaha Beach.

    Open image in new tab for better resolution.



    Thanks @oriskany for your heads up reply.

    Yep like yourself we have a degree in burning the candle at both ends while trying to avoid burning our fingers. 😉

    All the prep work you have to do for these large smooth running historic like these and then playing them out. If that was not enough your added work and looking after a great partnership. Wow hats off to you. Then you maintain a friendship with guys like me on the other side of the world who’s day it’s almost your night. So I have no issues with you taking a couple of days to reply to me. After all prior to the internet it would take weeks for replies. Hoping I am not showing me age. Life before the internet, did it really exist??? 🙂

    So I am happily waiting for your, but only after you have had a good sleep.

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