Wednesday, February 11, 2009

AAR RPT11 - Butchers and Bakers

Well it was a LONG weekend of gaming for yours truly. The Niagara Boardgaming Weekend was a smash hit. The organizers say it was the biggest yet. I personally played about 16 sessions of various games in just over 36 hours. I will be back next year and I'd recommend anyone who has a passing interest in wargaming or Euros or both to show up.

Seeing as the Prawn was left out of the fun we set up a game of ASLSK using a scenario from Schwerpunkt's Rally Point 2 collection. The first scenario in the pack is RPT11 Butchers and Bakers -- the one infantry-only scenario of the bunch. Schwerpunkt is known for producing very focused scenarios that are well play-tested. Butchers and Bakers was no exception.

The game was quick with very few squads overall. Essentially the British enter from one corner of the map and have 6 turns to exit 6 VP of squads and leaders off the opposite corner while clearing out two buildings in the middle of the map. The Germans' only goal is to prevent this.

Here's how the evil-- sorry, Prawn set himself up in the small half-map area (sorry for the glare!). The primary defense was the (A) group where the Germans only leader was. The (B) group was a single conscript squad with a medium MG. The Mines are actually set up hidden by the German player -- in this case, any unit entering or exiting the hexes are hit with a no-DRM 6FP attack on the IFT. (The other option for the Germans is to put one mine in one hex with a 12FP attack -- nasty!) Grain is in season and a hindrance.

Here's the board after about 3 turns (of 5.5). The Germans are woefully poor in the squad quality department. Basically, forcing them to MC at anytime is going to result in a break or casualty reduction. [Note the British 6+1 leader -- he's actually a 10-2 leader but the SKs do not include such a counter or my counter got lost!] The British has a superior elite squad edge and two leaders, an 8-0 and a super 10-2. You have basically two approaches on either of the extreme edges. I lucked out and chose the less mined one.

Our impressions of the scenario were not that positive to start. To be honest, I thought it was turning out to be a rout. The German side was just so brittle. On the start of turn 4 I had already cleared the middle buildings and my squads were starting to run for the exit hexes. But here is where I made a fatal mistake. Instead of just going for it and escaping I decided to add insult to injury and engaged the final German squad in the building at the edge of the map. Guess what? Yep...

The CC lasted precious turns so that while my 10-2 and elite squad was dueling his conscripts and later his 8-0, I could only exit off 5VPs! ONE SHORT!!! Oh the humanity!

Let that be a lesson to you kids. My wife likes to tell me: "Don't get fancy." It may not be pretty or honourable but losing when your stupid 10-2 led squad can't roll a 7 three times hurts! Just exit the damn squads! Congrats to the Prawn for hanging in there. I'd post an aftermath photo but I can't find a suitable toy that matches the dumb.

Reflections, Comments and Learning:

1. Prawn and I have to start putting the residual fire counters on the board. We're just so damn lazy! But again, in this scenario it barely mattered.

2. Butchers and Bakers is not the most intense scenario. It's really a good learning scenario with a nice twist (hidden mines) and a bit of deceptive depth. You have to hoard your British squads like gold. The dual VP conditions of clearing out two buildings and exiting 6VP of squads in just 5.5 turns is a pressure packed situation.

3. The Prawn and I are looking forward to trying this scenario pack again possibly next week in a mixed infantry/AFV scenario. It'll be our first.

4. Rally Point 2's big sell, of course, is that it's SK-level and full ASL tested and compliant. A neat feature that I'm sure we'll make use of when we transition to full ASL. Should be good. So far I'd say that Rally Point 2 is looking to be worth the price of admission.

Go play some ASL!


Anonymous said...

This did have a very quick and starter feel to the battle. It took us less than 1.5 hours playing slow and with several interruptions. This battle is low on tough choices and clever tactics, and although it did turn out to be a balanced scenario, both Scrub and I agreed we it is a very light weight scenario, even for relative beginners.

NP, got us back into it! Germans still undefeated!


Jon Nish said...

Scrub, there's an ASL con called West Coast Melee in southern California at the end of February. There will be several events for new players. Just thought your readers might be interested especially if they live the SoCal area. They can get info at

Price: $25 for one day
Where: Crowne Plaza, Irvine at John Wayne Airport
When: Feb 26 to Mar 1

Do you have an email addy to send info like this to so it doesn't get buried in a comment?

Thanks for a great blog!


scrub said...

Thanks for the info Jon, I have blogger alerting me to every post made in the comments so nothing gets buried (unless it's a Prawn post).

I encourage my left coast readers to head to a con whenever they can. My experience at NBW only made me crave gaming more!