Thursday, September 01, 2016

Battle! Action! -Bolt Action!

For the first time, I finally got to play Bolt Action. My fellow hobbyist and blogger The Bob, agreed to show me the ropes on Bolt Action. Get my lads 'stuck in' as it were. And a jolly-good show he made of it too.

Brits deployment, left flank.

British deployment, centre. 
Brits deployment, right flank.
Loaded Halftrack deployed with Forward Observer deployed in cover.

The rest of the German deployment.
This report is pretty much going to be a summary with my thoughts on the game.
The next pic below is only relevant in that it documents the first ever action I have ever performed in a real Warlord game. It was exciting stuff (for me anyway).

"Take the ruins!"

End Turn One

Turn One wrapped up with little pain for either side. Both of my observers had called in their strikes. My Forward Artillery Observer called in a strike on the German squad in the German center and marked it in such a way so as to hopefully tag the Panzer as well. The airstrike was called in on the Halftack. My Firefly sent a warning shot (yeah, a warning, that's it, yeah) over the panzer and it returned the salute in kind. The German unit on my left flank took on it's first pin marker.

The lads trade fire with Jerry! 
Turn 2 was a far more brutal affair. My airstrike achieved the game's first unit kill by wreaking the halftrack. Then my artillery barrage killed a few guys in the center and threw pin markers on the panzer as well. My Firefly hit the Panzer keeping it from performing any actions this round. Bob's Germans were not taking it without a fight and pinned down my Infantry in the ruins while his unit in the trees on my left flank eliminated 6 of my Infantry Division in a sick round of shooting. Probably the most effective smallarms combat of the game I think.

End Turn 2, start of Turn 3
Oddly I didn't do much documentation between the last pic and this next one, but I can say that the battle was in full on rage-mode. My left flank was crumbling, despite support from my CO directing the BREN Carrier to dump it's fire into German unit on my left flank, as well as some sniping (so it seemed) from my Forward Artillery Observer . The unit was losing men but still dishing out pain and ultimately my Infantry Division on the left flank were cut down by them. The biggest upset occurred in this period with the German airstrike strafing the German unit in the center and doing so with such efficiency as to utterly destroy them! (Someone is going to have sone explaining to do when he lands...)

The right flank was getting scary as well, as I only started off with the Forward Air Observer and a PIAT team. After trading shots the Forward Air Observer unit was wiped out.

Start of Turn 5

The Firefly kept pounding on the Panzer, almost smothering it in pin markers.


The PIAT Team never had anything come close enough to use the actual PIAT against, but their rifle shots were effective at slowing down the Germans advance on the right flank.

"Take that you gits!"
With the German squad in the center having been torn appart by the Luftwafe, I moved out of the ruins to support the PIAT Team. They did a fine job reducing their numbers but the German resolve was too tough to be break.

Top of Turn 6
Going into Turn 6 we were tied with 3 VPs each (or whatever the BA equivalent is called). My Bren Carrier blasted away his HQ unit over on the left flank pushing my tally up to 4 VPs.

Advancing from cover.

We traded more small arms fire and although there were a few casualties on bith sides no more units were eliminated. His Panzer did hit my Firefly for the first time in the game but it inflicted no damage.

End of the game, full table view.

With that the game ended 3 VPs to 4 VPs.

End of the game, close up of the remaining action.

What did I think of Bolt Action now that I have played it? Well, I loved it! The randomly determined turn based system definitely eliminates alpha strike, table-you in-a-turn shenanigans that has made a few particular games a bit distasteful. Although, yes it's possible to pull one side's dice one after another (this occurred in our game on one of the turns), it didn't have a much of an impact on our game.

I like the simplicity of the combat system. And the Leadership system, and found the game to be easy to grasp. I like that there are some aspects of the game where a roll on a table is required to determine the outcome of the action (i.e. airstrikes). Some people hate tables, but I am old school enough to totally love them.  The only thing we didn't do was a close combat assault so I still need to experience that, but otherwise I am pleased with the game and I am glad I got in a game prior to 2nd edition launching.

Looking forward to the next game!


Screech said...

Congratulations! You've learned how to play just in time for 2nd Edition to release. Lucky for you, the basics will remain the same.

neverness said...

Shouldn't be a problem, point and shoot anything that is gray. ;)