As a review earlier stated, I am not much of a fan of the new 4th Edition Flames of War rules. However, this is not stopping my wife and I from playing it. After all, I find that to really address the various issues with rule changes is to play them out. So Kalissa and I dusted off some of our miniatures to play out a game. In this case, I ran a Panzer Company from a list that is probably a Version 2 list and Kalissa ran her 4th Canadian Armor. We played the "Annihilation Mission", because that is what the new rule book said to do. So like little lemmings, we dove off a cliff into this second game!
In the early statements in the previous Flames of War post, I mentioned that the company (now Formation) lost their play style based on how you decide who attacks, such as, Tanks always attack! Apparently, they have three was to decide. Rolling, wanting to attack, or who ever has more infantry units is defending. That has the potential for starting a fight before the game is even played! My wife and I just decided to roll off. And with that, the Germans would be defending.
The first turn was rather a long one, since we had to stop multiple times to answer important questions. My wife, Kalissa really has to read rules for herself to understand them. After all, she is a teacher and there is a reason I am not. Recce seemed to be screwed fairly bad. Also, the complex movement issues had to be addressed. Mainly, these questions were truly figuring out the real order between movement and movement orders. Once we understood what we were doing, the rest of the turns went faster. This is especially true when your wife is very bold and terrain dashed almost point blank with Stuarts behind my lines! I had to kill them with my 8.8 cm Flak Guns and one 2 cm AA truck. My Germans did not have very much of a reason to move. The only movement I had was through the woods, which are now "Skill Checks" to move through. This sounds terrible, but the rules had eliminated "Bogged Down." If you fail your trek through the woods, it just means I halt in place. This is a rule I can stand by! This way, those pesky infantry forces cannot outright kill me when I fail all of the checks in the woods or other terrain types that require so.
The Canadians came at me from across the fields. The Common Wealth Forces lost a lot of special rules, but they did not lose their "Semi Indirect" rule. Kalissa, also. tried to use most of the Movement Order types to test their abilities. She tended to pass most of these orders, but her dice were not doing her shots justice. The picking target rule that was said in the book that stated it would rarely be used was used more than 50% of the game. Most of these targets were deterred by the "Mistake Target: rule where Kalissa rolled a 3+. This saved her Sherman Fireflies multiple times to stay in the fight. The Fireflies seemed to be the last tank in the platoon before they were killed off.
A Good portion of the Canadian tanks were left in ruin. She managed to kill off my 88's, my King Tiger, my IC Panther, and one Panzer IV H. This did not put me anywhere near a company check, since Division Support does not count against your Formation's "Good Spirits."(Guess we should be drinking during this game!) This lack of platoons counting in a game was what resulted in the Canadians loss, because several of her formations did not count. I am kind of annoyed by this for the throw away factor. I don't have to care for this troops, because they do not help for morale purposes. It is really strange.
Either way, the game was not too bad. If anything, we found several things in these newer rules that are guaranteed to start wargaming arguments based on wording. I am sure there will be an errata for this in the near future. Anyway, below are some the shot to our game. It seems that half got deleted in the middle of uploading. It happens!