Friday, 30 August 2013

Gripping Beast Byzantine Saga Commission - Infantry

Gripping Beast Byzantine Saga Commission - General and Cavalry

First Chain of Command outing at the Gloucester club

Myself (Brits) and von Bob (Germans) faced off against each other in a basic patrol scenario so we could concentrate on getting the rules right.
Overall view of the terrain after the initial patrol phase and my first two phases. An errant smoke round can be seen poking out from the other side of the building, but seeing no Germans I deploy a mortar team and all three of my sections. One is by the fence this side of the house, another is in the centre right of the picture and under cover of their Overwatching Bren team the third sections rifle team is making a dash for the farmhouse door. I am feeling pretty pleased with myself at this point...
The second section sets up overwatch by the hedge and the third makes its way across the road to the farmhouse having separated their bren team (left).

The first section detects some movement on the other side of the hillock. The Germans are here after all.
Bobs first section finally arrives and gains cover from the bank in front of them.

My No1 Section, assured that they are about to get devastating support fire from the farmhouse, go Tactical and hoping to survive the incoming fire with the Germans.
The platoon sgt arrives in the British centre and is happy with the developing smoke screen put down by the mortar. No2 section watches the British right flank for signs of a German counter. No3 section is in the farmhouse but it is full of abandoned copies of IABSM v1 which slows their progress to the upper floor. The Platoon Sgt then leads No3 sections bren team to the farmhouse to rejoin it's rifle team

No3 section's rifle team takes up a fantastic position at the upstairs windows to pour flanking fire into the Germans in the open below them. Hmm a pathetic efforts results in one kill only. Von Bob has by now another section on table and two sections pour 16 dice of lead into the farmhouse. The British realise too late that the building is held together by cobwebs as an amazing four kills and four shock are inflicted.

No1 sections Corporal hears the cries from the farmhouse and realises that his supporting fire has deserted him. A few exchanges of fire later he orders a desperate charge towards the German position. The results are so unpleasant that I cannot show the photos!

Best laid plans and all that eh? British morale tumbled with the complete loss of No1 Section and the wounding of Junior Leaders and I decided to bugger off before it got any worse.

Great game which initially looked all good for the Brits who tried to seize the initiative and the only elevated and hard (allegedly!) cover position on the field. The downside of course was that von Bob knew early on exactly where all my sections were and was able to react and deploy accordingly. I also left No3 section's bren team on overwatch for too long. They were desperately needed to support their rifle team in the building.

All in all a cracking game and a great sense of realism. I'm thinking about naming my platoon members but that may get far too upsetting.

Neither of us got a full CoC dice, nor did we have a Turn end. The whole game took two and a quarter hours roughly, but including a lot of referrals to the rulebook/iPad. One thing I really noticed was how simple the combat and movement mechansims are. I think we'll have most of the basics  when we play next time. This simplicity allows you to concentrate fully on leading your men to triumph or disaster.