Gazala

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Gazala

Postby Noakesy » Tue Sep 01, 2009 1:43 am

I never really got into BF, but now I've got used to Kharkov maybe I could revisit this as I am now getting used to the arty and huge casualties (although other elements of DF remain). Have others played Gazala much? I was sooooooooo keen for a good desert scenario, and was chuffed from BF marketing that it would be Gazala as my first board game was AH Tobruk. Did this turn out to be a good game? I played one game I think but it fell over after about 5-6 turns. Be interested to know if others like this. :D
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Postby Spuddy64 » Tue Sep 01, 2009 6:06 am

I enjoyed Gazala Andrew, but it seemed easier than most to figure out so I became bored with it quicker. If you cant find someone to play I will give it another go with you if you want after the Kharkov tourney is over
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Postby Noakesy » Tue Sep 01, 2009 6:43 am

Thanks for the response Mike, but disappointed to hear it's easy to figure out. Is that for both sides or are you saying once side 'x' has figured it out they will win every time? :?
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Postby Joe » Tue Sep 01, 2009 8:43 am

I have played this by PBEM quite a few times. I have written this just recently and may as well post it in this thread!

In SSG’s game “Battlefront” game, there is a scenario named Gazala. It covers Rommel’s drive on Tobruk.

In my view, this is one of the best scenarios in the whole series of SSG’s games.

The scenario has it al! Large sweeping armoured movements, close infantry fighting, armoured clashes, dogged defence, supply problems etc etc.

The map covers the coastline from Gazala to Tobruk as well as the area inland to the Free French defences at Bir Hakiem.

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If 2 players are of equal ability, then, in my opinion, the Allied player should have a victory. But the Axis player can win so long as he thinks like Rommel. ( I lose most of the time anyway!). Battlefront brought some new innovations to wargaming that would of benefit, a “Rommel” type of player.

Battlefront, gave wargaming, the concept of attack supply as separate from defence supply.

So it is the Axis player needs to form 2 battlegroups. Each battlegroup would be made up of armour, infantry, artillery, an attack HQ and a defence HQ.

The idea is that each one moves about the map destroying allied units. As each one runs short of attack supply it stops and entrenches. Then the other battlegroup takes over and continues the rampage.

The next screen shot shows a battlegroup formed up ready to advance. Note the infantry is leading, with engineers behind, armour behind them and artillery at the rear together with the HQ units.

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A clever player will have multiple battlegroups moving over various parts of the map and the allied player will never know where the next blow will fall.

Many of the Allied troops are worth high victory points but most of the Axis troops are worth only few victory points. This means that, where the Axis advance, then, mostly, the Allies must withdraw or else lose many valuable units. This means withdrawing almost right back to Tobruk!




Should Bir Hakiem be captured?

To win the scenario, the Axis must either capture Bir Hakiaem or else go around it and capture the objectives deep in the British Commonwealth rear.

In a typical game, the winning margin will be will be some hundreds of points. The Objective of Bir Hakiem is worth 1,875 points and the Free French troops there are worth 610 points making a total of 2,485

Even the best players take 7 or so turns of a 23 turn scenario to capture it. So there is incentive to go around it.

In the early turns the British Commonwealth forces, are quite scattered. If Axis battlegroups moved quickly and go around Bir Hakiem, the battlegroups should destroy most Commonwealth forces they meet. This opens the door to a series of objectives around an area that became known as “Knightsbridge”.

The value of the objectives that could be captured and are not usually captured, amount to 1,865 and the Commonwealth troops that could be destroyed amount to maybe, perhaps 2,000 points. Which makes a total of perhaps 2,800 points

In the meantime, Axis troops in the west need to push hard. It is important the Axis threaten the valuable objectives of Ain El Gazala and Alem Hamza, which between them are worth and of 2,120

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The Commonwealth defences are very strong and the Italians, except for a few units, are not so good. The purpose of an attack in the west is to draw off the Commonwealth troops in the centre and in the east.

In my view, instead of a direct attack, the Axis should move around the south and then strike north.

As usual some battlegroups need to be formed, with a mix of infantry, armour, artillery, engineers, attack HQ and defence HQ.

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If the Commonwealth troops move to defend the objectives in the west, the Axis troops that went around Bir Hakiem have a much better go at advancing.

However. The French troops at Bir Hakiem are few in number but have much combat power. Once it has become obvious that the Axis are not going to attack the fortress, the French will probably begin to make short excursions out of the fort, with a view to cutting the Axis supply lines. The desert is so large this is quite difficult to do but the Axis will need to leave a battlegroup behind keep a watch on the situation.

Also, the French do have some entrenched artillery and this can damage Axis units passing near to the fort.

I think this is a terrific scenario. It is too bad it is not played so much.

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Postby Joe » Tue Sep 01, 2009 8:48 am

Noakesy wrote:Is that for both sides or are you saying once side 'x' has figured it out they will win every time? :?


I say that either side can win.

The player most experienced with the scenario should win.

If both players are experienced with the scenario and of equal ability it can go either way - in which case if the Axis player plays like Rommel he will win.

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Postby Joe » Tue Sep 01, 2009 10:59 am

I forgot to mention, the French don’t have to stay on their fort at Bir Hachiem.

I saw one player move the French out of the fort on turn 1 and join the main line of defence.

The fort and its valuable objective will fall a bit sooner but the French can add their weight to the defensive line and slow the Axis advance on Tobruk and the other objectives.

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Postby Noakesy » Tue Sep 01, 2009 5:17 pm

Lucky timing on my part that you were getting ready to produce this Joe (should also re-read the AAR from when the game was launched I think).
Thanks :D
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Postby ailiah27 » Thu Jan 13, 2011 12:34 pm

Thanks in advance...
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