Saturday, May 08, 2010

Firestorm Market Garden as a Boardgame

Jim's Allies v. Rich's Germans

My first impression of Firestorm Market Garden out of the box was that it would be a good boardgame.  I was not disapointed.  We took about 3 hours to set up and play it for the first time (with a good bit of time lost looking up the rules) & both of us had a great time. 

The Brits dropped their paras all over the shop to disrupt German reinforcements, then charged straight up the central road.  The first turn got the head of the British column almost to Nijmegan Bridge.  It all looked too easy - and it was.  The German reinforcements came on & the Brits spent most of the rest of the game grimly defending their over-extended and inadequately defended line of supply.  For some of the time both sides' main forces were out of supply - the Germans striking at the long Brit LOS while the Allied paras made judicious attacks in the German rear.    By the end the Paras had taken Nijmegan, but not Arnhem & the Brits had come off worst in the tank battles so the Germans won a minor victory.

The game features rapidly swinging fortunes, but there are enough dice to roll to expect the luck to even out.  But wild dice suits the scenario - the real campaign was a big roll of the dice by Monty.

I liked Bagration as a board game too, but this is better still - Monty really did set up a great scenario & the Battlefront chaps have done a good job with it.   The supply rules are simple but very effective - the game's all about supply as it should be.  With the airbourne dropping about all over the place and the German reinforcements coming on from all directions it's a real challenge with lots of options for both sides.   In this game, the Brit plan of simply charging up the central road left their line of supply vulnerable, but it got troops near the objectives and it was close run thing in the end - if the final Para attacks on Arnhem Bridge had been done just a bit better it would have turned the VPs round to minor Brit win.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I think we both thought that the game paralleled reality alomost spookily. Fantastic time. I also noticed today that Battelfront have released it only as a board game, as well as a campaign management system.