Thursday, January 22, 2015

Wednesday Night Game - A24 - Regalbuto Ridge

My regular Wednesday night opponent finally returned to the battlefield and we selected A24 Regalbuto Ridge to start the gaming year. This scenario appears to be a straight up slugfest as German 8-3-8's, 4-6-8's go toe to toe against British 4-5-8's in the Italian hills. We managed to complete one turn before wrapping up and as expected..there were already a pile of dead counters.

 My opponent drew the Gemans and set up in a long line with the 81mm Mortar and MMG on the hills to provide fire support. The German 9-2 settled in with the MMG and would rain pain down on my boys. There are no woods on the map, as all woods are brush. I struggled to remember this initially and missed some shots because I thought woods were blocking me.

I drew the British and set up a defense in depth on the hills. SSR required that all of my units set up on hill hexes. I have the advantage initially as my forces occupy the victory location hill hexes. So my game plan is to slow the German advance as much as possible and hang on to the hill hexes. Not too complicated...

I had not played my regular opponent since last September. And I immediately noticed some real play differences. My games against Big Kansas, my Friday opponent are played very quickly. My regular Friday opponent does not move quickly and almost painfully slow at times. I thought we would never get through his opening move, which consumed an hour and a half, which left me only 30 minutes for my turn 1.  

The Germans managed to place one smoke that really blocked some of my better fire power, but my other units managed to lay down a lot of fire, which stung the Germans as they advanced in the open and brush covered ground.

 The Germans have an off-board 75* IeIG gun that went to work early on my forces, but without much effect.

 The Germans did manage to wipe out a 4-5-8 in E7 in their close combat, but in my Prep Fire, I pinned the 9-1 and DM'd the squads back to D6.

The situation at the end of Turn 1. The Germans made good progress and remained relatively intact. Turn 2 will be a challenge for us both.


  1. I would definitely have some guys in the rear digging foxholes from Turn 1 onwards. Not sure what the VC are, but by the time Jerry crests that hill, it will be hard to dig Tommy out of +2 TEM. Especially considering he will likely be receiving +0 TEM on the return fire, and -1 (OG) getting in position to do so.

  2. I'm interested in the concept of faster play. I think I've heard on the two half squads that the aussie's or euros play faster than us.?

    I've mainly played solo, so it's hard to judge how fast or slow I am.

    Some people, it seems, are able to evaluate a situation quicker and make decisions. Do you have any tips for faster play? By the way, I could also use this advice for my business and personal life, so please be thorough in your explanation. No pressure. ; )

    Oh listening to an episode of TTHS recently and heard Robin reading your letter. "Grumble. Did your parents name you Grumble? That's a cool name." She sounds awesome. I love it when she's on the show.

    1. The key is to remember that each turn is simulating roughly 2 minutes of actual combat. So you try to focus on your moves during your turn and do some instinctual moves. Sometimes they will be right and sometimes they will be wrong. ASL is not Chess. I had an opponent in the '80's that would take forever to move and was like a math puzzle for him. He found a lot of LOS shots that I never saw, because he took that kind of time. But that really slowed the game down and made it a lot less fun.

      Now, I don't mean to be critical of my Wednesday night opponent. He and I have played ASL for a very long time and are used to each other's style of play. But that said, the faster game play adds a bit to the games' excitement. As an example, when Big Kansas or I are moving pieces, you only have a few seconds to call out shots before we move to the next hex. You don't have all day to decide if you want to take that shot and in the real situation you wouldn't have that time either. That isn't to say that we haven't halted a movement at times to check a shot, but that is rare in our game play. We also try not to constantly rules dive. We try to know what we need to know for each given scenario. Of course you will always have to do some rules diving...wouldn't be ASL without it.

      So in short, I think the key to fast play is to stay focused, pay attention to all your opponent's moves and be very deliberate in your own. Try not to agonize over each hex moved or each shot taken. Because in the end, the success of your choices is often decided by the dice over which we have absolutely no control. And of course have fun. This game is fun and it should be fun!!!

      As for the Half-Squads Podcast, they were reading a letter from someone else...not sure where they got Grumble from. I listened to it again just to be sure. Very weird.

  3. Thank you. Good points.

    That is strange. Someone is imitating you! How dare they.

    Btw - I'm in Lake St Louis.