Monday, June 29, 2009

Nuts! AAR

The scenario was simple enough, the British were to defend the two house "village" from theattacking Germans. Two 10 man squads a piece with 2 Brens for the British and 4 Mp-42's for the Germans.

I forgot to take photos of the setup and the first two turns but you can see below is the game as of turn three. A German squad with 2 MG-42 have moved into the woods in the top left of the photo and a team in the woods to the top right. Another team is about to come over the hill to the middle right.

Half of the first British squad on the left has already fallen to the MG42's in the treeline. The rectangles in the middle of the table are fields and the remaining British are making an attempt to come around them and get the LMG's within SMG range.

It didn't turn out too well.

No sooner than we would hit the gunner than another would take his place. There's no official rule in Nuts (at least that I could find in the rulebook) for someone to take over as the gunner of a LMG/MMG but we later found some in the Pieper At The Gates supplement.

This is what was left of the British after 3 LMG's and a squad came over the hill. The Bren gun stationed at the corner of the field did an excellent job outgunning and pushing most of the Germans back over the hill but the damage had already been done.

This team spent most of the game getting knocked down, standing up, knocked down, standi... you get the idea.

After this photo was taken the British laid down their weapons and waved the white flag.

Two hours of gaming (and chatting) from start to finish so the rules live up their companies name. To be fair we spent a little bit of time looking for rules (some that weren't actually in the book) and towards the end of the game we were referring to the QRS only sparingly.
A few things we learned from this game:
  • LMG's have just as much potential in controlling the enemies movement than they do as outright killing machines.
  • Terrain... you need lot's of it in a Nuts! game. Open areas like you see in the photos above are difficult if not impossible to cross without casualties.
  • Anyone in cover is dang hard to take down by a Rep 3 with a rifle (read that as not possible), I'll believe the guys on the Yahoo group have addressed this so I'll have to look that up.
  • You need a good scenario to keep things moving. In our battle it would have made no sense for the Germans to leave the saftey of the woods unless there was a strong motivation to do so. Eg take the town by tun 5. Simple scenarios like I'm defending and you're attacking isn't really enough. A quick flip through Peiper At The Gates just shows how a game can be enriched with a little background fluff and some key objectives.

I don't know if we'll play Peiper as is but we're going to use it as the watermark by which we play all our future games. Although it probably won't be too hard to just substitute US troops for British and play as is.

I'm very curious to see if the "Focus" test from Chain Reaction 3 makes it's way into the new Nuts! rulebook. Not being able to just pick the most tactically advantageous target every turn will make the games way more interesting and unpredictable. And let's face it: that's why we play Nuts! right? Otherwise we'd just play some *cough*hammer based system.

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