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Tuesday, July 27, 2004

A&A D-Day and Memoir 44

Saturday evening, Mike the uber-spielfriek came over to play A&A D-Day and Memoir 44. We started out with D-Day, as it would take longer, and we played a standard game, not using the fortune or tactics cards.

Since I had one game as the Allies under my belt, I played the Germans. I knew that I had to concentrate on retaining control of at least one city, and I opted for St-Lo. I put up a token defence in Caen and Cherbourg, and assembled as many units as I could around St-Lo.

Fearing the effects of Allied air power, I tried to spread out adequate artillery to try and take down a few Allied planes. In the end, I was only able to shoot down one fighter the entire time, while losing a number of units to Allied bombing and strafing runs.

The good news, at least for the Axis, was that the tanks just outside of St-Lo proved to be excellent, more like Tigers than Panzers. They scored many, many hits on the Allies, and, in fact, the Allies never made it into St-Lo, even by turn 10.

If the Axis plays well, at least in the standard game, they are hard to beat. I am looking forward to my next play, to see if the Allies can finally take St-Lo.

Since it was Mike's copy of Memoir 44, I told him to select a scenario. He selected the one where 7 French Resistance units are being hunted by 2 German Elite armour units and 7 or so infantry units. The French Resistance units only have three figures, but they are able to move onto any terrain and still fight, and they can choose to retreat 1-3 hexes for each flag rolled.

As the resistance, I figured that I had to make good use of the available tree and town cover. I was able to eliminate one elite armour unit, which counted as two flags, and I had reduced one infantry unit to 1 figure, but, ultimately, the Germans were able to use the remaining tanks and infantry to good effect, and I lost the engagement 4-2.

I like Memoir 44, and I can recommend it. It is more of a generic WWII game than a D-Day game, but it is fast and fun. It has some interesting differences with Battle Cry. I did have some bad luck with my command cards, but I still had a good time.

One suggestion for reducing card hosage might be that any useless card could be used instead to order one unit in any sector. This is not out of line with the special order cards, which are all able to do that, and it would not be overpowering. The Recon cards allow you to move one unit, but they also allow you to draw two cards and to keep the one that you prefer, which can be a good bonus.

All in all, it was an enjoyable evening.


Blogger Iain said...

Which do you prefer, Battle Cry or Memoir 44?

4:05 a.m.

Blogger Mark M said...

It's still too early for me to have a definite preference. I have played a lot of Battle Cry, so I naturally have an affinity for it, but the different cards and units in Memoir 44 are interesting.

If I had to pick a favourite D-Day game, I would pick A&A D-Day hands down, as it has much more flavour and tension.

It is harder to pick a favourite game in the Command and Colours series. I don't have enough experience with Memoir 44 to make really well-informed observations, but from some of the posts I have read, it seems that the scenarios might not be as well designed as those that came with the original Battle Cry. Once user-created scenarios start appearing, this should address the issue.

7:46 a.m.

Blogger Iain said...

Thanks for the feedback. It's always good to hear different points of view. Most pundits I have read have gravitated towards Memoir 44.

9:42 a.m.


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