Fields of Fire Vol. 1. Normandy Practice game turns 3 and 4

As I began turns 3 and 4, it was apparent I wasn’t going up the middle anymore. the flanks were the only solution. I needed to out-maneuver the enemy HMG anyway, so my guys were going to go out to the edges of the map and hope for the best.

I had forgotten a couple of things which is incredibly easy to do in this game, there is so much going on at the same time. Markers not getting moved, or removed is the most likely error, although doing something against the rules is probable too as finding the right section in the rulebook can be troublesome at best.

The main error I made was not placing a PDF (prime direction of fire) counter and a VOF (volume of fire) marker from the pinned fire team in the minefields. So I got it out there.

It’s time to get some risk in the game. I need to get my heavy weapons up to be able to either get this German machine gun to die or move. Having plenty of commands in turn 3, I made the decision to make a full platoon move with 3rd Platoon, up the right flank, then get an assault team up to the second row. If successful, I would have the enemy MG team in a crossfire and increase my chances of getting it to do something other than fire at my troops. I would also send the Company XO over there with 3rd Platoon as he carries another radio and some pyrotechnics if needed for commands.

The enemy weapons team maintained it’s fire at the pinned unit it originally fired on, and the potential enemy contact on that woods card turned up no enemies.

On the left, 1st Platoon benefited from a bit of player omniscience, I knew that the enemy observer would have 2 fire missions at the most, and that he had to draw cards to have access to his final mission, so I sent an assault team to the card where their platoon mates had just died, hoping to get the last fire mission used up or to miss it’s draw. The fire mission came through, and while my Assault team got hit, it wasn’t obliterated like the first team.

With 3rd Platoon now in the fight, I was able to get the crossfire marker on the enemy MG team, but in the combat phase, we failed to get an effect as this particular enemy is in foxholes in the best possible terrain on row 2, a village.

Turn 4 was eventful, and I dodged a bullet from Battalion. In my HQ higher event phase, we drew the commander radio on the card and I was required to spend 3 commands to send a report to Battalion. Great. Fortune was with me here as my Company CO command draw was 6!

The Company CO had banked 2 commands from before, so after paying the draw penalty for being green and sending a report to Battalion, I still had 3 commands so I activated 1st and 3rd Platoons.

Both platoons had satisfactory command draws, so 3rd sent an Assault team forward to flank the enemy MG team, and ordered it’s bazooka to take a shot at them too.

Knowing that the enemy observer was out of fire missions, I made a platoon move with 1st to get forward to the left of the minefields. I had intended for the good order team in the minefield to move up to the attack position, but realized it was a fire team, and they aren’t allowed to move as a scout, it has to be an assault team.

The 1st Sargent moved up with 1st Platoon using his saved commands, taking the .50 cal team up with him. The Company XO moved to the right to stay with 3rd platoon. All that was left was resolving the category A potential enemy counter with the Assault team from 3rd Platoon in row 2, and then combat.

Odds were not in my favor on the enemy contact draw as I would be drawing 7 cards. Contact was made and my Assault team had bumped into an enemy command post in a bunker, and it was not yet spotted. Not good.

This mission just gets tougher by the minute. Combat was uneventful as my bazooka team missed.

Somehow I have to get 2nd Platoon in the game, but they are parked behind two minefields. 3rd Platoon is now having to deal with an enemy Heavy Machine Gun and an enemy Command bunker with automatic weapons. Next turn I will send a 1st platoon assault team forward, but luck hasn’t been with me so far.

More next time.

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