• Seems like many (especially Axis players) have an issue with starting 5 hexes in since the Shermans and Crocs can get on top of you very quickly.  It virtually makes the “10 hex” ability useless for the Axis tanks.

    One solution I hear a lot is starting vehicles at the edge of the map.  Although it works for gameplay, I can’t justify it because it doesn’t make any logical sense that the infantry would always be way in front of the tanks.

    Has anyone ever tried this starting the game with an assault phase before Turn 1 starts?  I call it “First Contact”.  This would occur after you place your units and first attack would go to the  player that deployed his troops first.  This would prevent placing units out in the open just so they can move far up and then behind cover in the first movement phase.  It may help prevent the cheap swarm tactic if you have to think about LOS and cover when you place your units.

    It doesn’t make any sense to me that you can start 5 spaces in and move TWICE (once in movement phase and once in assault phase if you wish) before a shot is ever fired at you.

    What do you think?

  • Founder TripleA Admin

    @shadowhooch:

    Seems like many (especially Axis players) have an issue with starting 5 hexes in since the Shermans and Crocs can get on top of you very quickly.  It virtually makes the “10 hex” ability useless for the Axis tanks.

    One solution I hear a lot is starting vehicles at the edge of the map.  Although it works for gameplay, I can’t justify it because it doesn’t make any logical sense that the infantry would always be way in front of the tanks.

    I might have mentioned it in a post previously but only in passing. The group I play with likes to use this house rule (setting up vehicles on the edge of the map) and it works out very nicely. It really helps even up the game for Germany.

    Now, why would the soldiers be in front of the vehicles? Maybe the soldiers were already there and the vehicles are reinforcements coming to save the day.

  • Founder TripleA Admin

    @shadowhooch:

    Has anyone ever tried this starting the game with an assault phase before Turn 1 starts?  I call it “First Contact”.  This would occur after you place your units and first attack would go to the  player that deployed his troops first.  This would prevent placing units out in the open just so they can move far up and then behind cover in the first movement phase.  It may help prevent the cheap swarm tactic if you have to think about LOS and cover when you place your units.

    It doesn’t make any sense to me that you can start 5 spaces in and move TWICE (once in movement phase and once in assault phase if you wish) before a shot is ever fired at you.

    What do you think?

    The two biggest problems that I see is that (a) setup will take 2-3 times longer and (b) the person who sets up first has an extreme disadvantage.

    Think about how much time you would need to spend as the first player to setup to figure out where all of the hiding spots are. Imagine having to check LOS from everywhere. Sure, eventually you would figure it out. On the other hand there are maps, like Tiger Heaven, where there are only a few hiding spots. These leaves your units out in the open and for units like the Nashorn there are even fewer safe hexes. Without enough blocking terrian the player who sets up second has the potential to get several “free” shots on their opponent. Depending on the unit attacking the defender may not even be in range to counter-attack.

    I think this rule would take away a lot of the tactical movements around the map and reduce the game to “he who plays Germany and sets up second wins.”

    But it is an interesting idea.


  • It’s pretty much standard now in our games for all vehicles to start at the edge of the map. What I find is an advantage for the infantry, less so for Axis vehicles. Allied vehicles virtually fly across a map anyhow, especially where there are roads. I find getting the infantry into the mess (and cover) quicker is alot more fun. Besides, playing the axis most of the time, I work the edges with the tanks and shoot down the alleys. With a central objective, the allies can’t just go Tiger hunting. If they do then Axis infantry will ultimately swarm the objective.

    What we had before this house rule is the vehicles slugging it out in the middle and most of that being over before the men got into position. And everytime, Allied tanks got to the objective first. They still get there first, but now the Axis infantry units get to weigh in. With the Set II Wehrmacht Oberleutnant/SS Panzergrenadier/Panzerfaust combo, it makes a big difference getting them there on time.

    That’s my experience.


  • (Sorry, I don’t know how to do that little blue box quote thingy)  But in response to your thoughts djensen:

    You can still move in the assault phase, so the first set up player wouldn’t be at a big disadvantage.  They could always move to a safe place.
    In reality, the only thing the “First Contact” would do is allow the
    option of firing on an approaching opponent instead of letting them move closer for free.
    Essentially, the placement phase of the start of the game represents the movement phase, and First Contact is the assault phase.
    It hasn’t really made setup longer because the first player can still move in his assault phase to a safe place.

    But I agree, the vehicles starting in the first hex also works well.  I just am anal and have trouble accepting a rule that doesn’t make logical sense.  There were many battles in WWII that the tanks led the charge.

  • Founder TripleA Admin

    At the top of each post there is a button that says “quote.” Use that.


  • In reality, it was preferential to have infantry in front of the armor.  In most historical cases, sending armor ahead of infantry resulted in the armor getting devastated by anti-tank fire.  Being inside an armored vehicle, one couldn’t hear the enemy and certainly had a hard time seeing small units that were waiting to ambush.

    Possible solution: It would be best if you were using a hex map with numbered hexes (like battletech).  Both sides can write on paper where they are deploying their units.  When a player wishes to move a unit, the unit is revealed starting in the hex it began in.  If a player uses the unit to fire it is revealed.  This way, if your opponent rushed armor onto the battlefield then they would suffer the risk of taking anti-tank fire from a very close range, and that would mimic reality.  Perhaps enemy positions could be revealed when you’ve moved one of your units into an adjacent hex.

    Ambushing is such a basic element of ground battle and I regret that it wasn’t included in the rules.  I guess thats what house rules are for.

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