Home Forums WWII WRG 1925-1950 AAR: Attack on La Londres Farm 1944

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  • #52587
    Whirlwind
    Participant

    I had a go today at a small infantry battle using an excellent historical scenario published by blogger Shaun Travers – please see the AAR here: link

     

    https://hereticalgaming.blogspot.co.uk/

    #52602
    Whirlwind
    Participant

    Thanks for that Tim.  Yes, the smoke was from the 2″ mortars.  Incidentally, I halve the allowance of smoke given in the rules – I think that 150m of smokescreen per tube was a bit too generous.

    Yes, I totally forgot to take a single close-up – must do better next time! It was a pity, since this was the first time into action for large(-ish) numbers of my new Baccus WW2 toys…

    https://hereticalgaming.blogspot.co.uk/

    #52626
    Shaun Travers
    Participant

    I am with Tim – fantastic table but no close ups 

    A underrated set of rules.  I must look through them every few weeks, admiring how good they are.  Except the morale rules – too many modifiers!  But there is a shorter version around that someone has done.

    #52636
    Whirlwind
    Participant

    Not a true close-up, but perhaps giving more of a sense of the figures and how they work in the terrain:

     

    https://hereticalgaming.blogspot.co.uk/

    #52672
    John D Salt
    Participant

    These rules were good fun for infantry combat, but a bit savage for armour, I found. An extra couple of armour categories seem necessary, too.

    The smoke rules in this and the 1950-75 companion set meant there was a danger of the wargames table turning into a solid white blob of low-level cumulus, unless steps were taken to limit smoke availability (as was done in subsequent editions). The direct area fire rules reduced the effect of smoke screening, too, against soft targets. I don’t think I saw any rules for smoke before the WRG rules, and a lot of wargamers seem to welcome any excuse to ignore it.

    I think Phil pretty much got it right with the detection ranges and the near-invulnerability of static infantry to bullet fire at any distance. The critical importance of morale was reflected in the reaction tests, but too many wargamers left them out, not I think out of dislike for their (fairly minor, certainly by the standards of the day) complexity, so much as the way they slowed battles down and made it hard to maneouvre even against quite light opposition (as it should be, say I).

    The later editions I think did a better job of capturing the importance of LMGs to section and platoon firepower, but a house rule could easily fix that.

    All the best,

    John.

    #52683
    Whirlwind
    Participant

    Interesting points.  I don’t think there is anything I’d dissent from. A few questions though:

    Which factor in the acquisition – hit – damage sequence is too savage?

    Any thoughts on how many armour classes and where the boundaries might lie? (My club at the time ended up producing its own rules which had actual armour penetration graphs…)

    What were the changes in regard to smoke and LMG fire in the subsequent editions (I’ve never seen a copy)?  Hearing that they contained “modes” put me off (I’d already been annoyed by them enough in Tactical Commander).

    All the best

     

    https://hereticalgaming.blogspot.co.uk/

    #52691
    John D Salt
    Participant

    Please excuse any lack of coherence in these scribblings, which I attribute to the bottle of Pouilly-Fuissé I am just finishing off that accompanied the Friday fish and chips.

    Whirlwind wrote:

    Which factor in the acquisition – hit – damage sequence is too savage?

    I think the main misalignment with my expectations is in hit probability. It’s fair enough to argue that the rules represent a number of shots, but I’d say that if the first shot is a miss then a sensible target is going to be doing something in the way of hiding, jinking or laying smoke by the second shot. I would also expect acquisition ranges to be shorter than most people think, but these may be LOS-limited as well as distinguishability-limited, so one might obtain convincing acquisition distances just by having a really good terrain model (as, I should have said, yours appears to be — unlike a lot of wargaming terrain, it strikes me as looking very much like ground one would see in real life).

    It’s a bit evil of me to carp about these things, because the WRG rules were streets ahead of anything else at the time, and still stand up very well in terms of the relative rankings of different guns and armour. One can also consider, from the pure “game” point of view, that the (then recent) advent of 1/300th tanks meant that you could probably lose a few tanks and not worry as much as the Charles Grant-raised 1/76th gamer would. There is also the point that the game needs to be finished before we go down the pub.

    Any thoughts on how many armour classes and where the boundaries might lie? (My club at the time ended up producing its own rules which had actual armour penetration graphs…)

    Rather too many thoughts for most people’s taste, I should think, and embodied in a spreadsheet that generates armour class bands based on three different principles; equal width (each band is n mm), equal multiple (each band is x times the last) and power (band = armour thickness to the power x). You get very close to the WRG 1st edition armour class banding scheme if you use a power scheme, with the mm RHAe thickness in the middle of each band, n (numbered thinnest to thickest), equal to n+2 ^ 2.6. It’s probably easiest to send you the spreadsheet.

    For WW2, though, I think we need to distinguish the same classes as successive up-armourings of German PzKw IIIs and IVs — 15mm, 30mm, 50mm, 70-80mm — plus a paper-thin lower band fr half-tracks, carriers and light armoured cars, and three heavier classes for ~100mm (Churchill, Tiger, KV), ~150mm (Heavy Churchill, Panther, IS-2) and ~200mm (Elefant, Konigstiger). Any division finer than eight classes I think risks distinguishing between levels of protection that designers and tacticians of the time did not. If my memory fails me correctly, the second edition WRG WW2 rules have eight armour classes.

    What were the changes in regard to smoke and LMG fire in the subsequent editions (I’ve never seen a copy)? Hearing that they contained “modes” put me off (I’d already been annoyed by them enough in Tactical Commander).

    The big limitation on smoke was that it was considered a scarce ammunition nature. IIRC only three shots were allowed of a scarce nature before it became exhausted, and the same rule stopped people carrying limitless supplies of APDS, APCR or HEAT. There were exceptions, for example prepared fireplans could use as much smoke as desired (as a dumping plan was implied).

    As for LMGs, the second edition distinguished LMGs (mag fed) and GPMGs (in the light role) (belt fed), and gave them considerably higher hit probabilities, practically automatic for GPMGs at battle ranges.

    The second edition rules included a lot of interesting ideas, including target acquisition rolls, a bunch of different ways of using artillery, and those tactical modes that put you off (and they are necessary to do away with the reaction tests). The troop classes are also very interesting, and a fine basis for endless argument with people who protest at American infantry being classified as GREEN or thinking that Italian artillery do not deserve to be in the same troop class as the RA (a magnificent piece of Barkerist generalisation — all gunners are STUBBORN).

    All the best,

    John.

    #52728
    Whirlwind
    Participant

    Given those interesting concepts in the 2nd edition, would you recommend fans of the first edition to give it a try? I believe WRG have just reprinted them.

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 10 months ago by Whirlwind.

    https://hereticalgaming.blogspot.co.uk/

    #52732
    John D Salt
    Participant

    I think I would recommend people to try anything by the WRG, except for the wretched “Fire and Steel” skirmish rules written by two non-WRGers (Mark Evans and Dave Wilson), which have now I think sunk into well-deserved obscurity.

    All the best,

    John.

    #52749
    MartinR
    Participant

    That was a grand AAR, and I still fondly remember the old WRG rules. John is right, our tables did indeed become complete smoke pots and it never occurred to me to limit the amount of smoke ammo. We did use the morale rules, but the lengthy lists of modifiers made them tedious in the extreme.

    "Mistakes in the initial deployment cannot be rectified" - Helmuth von Moltke

    #52751
    Whirlwind
    Participant

    Thanks very much. I must look out for a copy of the 2nd edition – did you try them Martin?

    About the smoke, I wonder if there is an argument for making smoke the standard nature for a 2″ mortar and making HE the restricted nature?

     

    https://hereticalgaming.blogspot.co.uk/

    #52752
    John D Salt
    Participant

    Option? I think that was a rule.

    All the best,

    John.

    #52757
    Rules Junkie Jim
    Participant

    I think I would recommend people to try anything by the WRG, except for the wretched “Fire and Steel” skirmish rules written by two non-WRGers (Mark Evans and Dave Wilson), which have now I think sunk into well-deserved obscurity. All the best, John.

    Oooh, that’s harsh! It’s been years since I’ve played F&S, but they’re a great set of skirmish rules! If I’m remembering correctly, they’re only marred by a lack of clarity about the (admittedly rather fundamental to the game) turn sequence. Might look them out and single-handedly rescue them from obscurity!

    #52774
    MartinR
    Participant

    Thanks very much. I must look out for a copy of the 2nd edition – did you try them Martin?

    About the smoke, I wonder if there is an argument for making smoke the standard nature for a 2″ mortar and making HE the restricted nature?

    2nd Ed? No. The Cold War set did my head in quite sufficiently in terms of complexity.

    "Mistakes in the initial deployment cannot be rectified" - Helmuth von Moltke

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