Switch Theme:

Thinking of getting into Bolt Action  [RSS] Share on facebook Share on Twitter Submit to Reddit
»
Author Message
Advert


Forum adverts like this one are shown to any user who is not logged in. Join us by filling out a tiny 3 field form and you will get your own, free, dakka user account which gives a good range of benefits to you:
  • No adverts like this in the forums anymore.
  • Times and dates in your local timezone.
  • Full tracking of what you have read so you can skip to your first unread post, easily see what has changed since you last logged in, and easily see what is new at a glance.
  • Email notifications for threads you want to watch closely.
  • Being a part of the oldest wargaming community on the net.
If you are already a member then feel free to login now.




Made in ca
Crushing Black Templar Crusader Pilot





Toronto, Ontario

I'm sure threads like this come up a lot here so forgive me, but I'm curious about this game as I keep hearing about it and everything I've heard has been pretty positive. I love WWII and have played Flames of War and Battlegroup, so this wouldn't be my first foray into tabletop WWII. So I have a few questions...

1. In a really general sense, what's it like? I still play a lot of 40K and I've played Flames of War before, how does it compare to those in terms of gameplay mechanics?
2. Are the rules tight? I hate arguing over rules interpretations and RAW vs. RAI.
3. How accurate is it? I'm not really too picky in this regard, I just want to know how simple it would be to get forces from the same time period and same theater onto a table together.
4. What's the infantry/vehicle balance like? I've heard BA hearkens back to earlier editions of 40K and in terms of scale a typical game is some blokes and a tank. Is that right?
5. I recall reading on this forum that machineguns in the game were seldom ever taken and were terrible. Was this rectified in 2nd edition? It would be very disappointing if such an iconic weapon in the war was so dismal on the tabletop.
6. What are the 'codices' like? I know there are 'armies of...' books, but there also appears to be theater books as well like Battlegrounds of Europe. What's usually used and what are the key differences there?

Thanks a lot for your help guys.
   
Made in us
Nasty Nob





SoCal

It is, generally, based off the 40k style game of massed groups of 28mm models. There's a lot of weird leftovers from the old 40k design mindset, such as true line of sight, but with rules that are way more abstract.

The new BA 2.0 rules are better, but I haven't played it.

People were a little too forgiving of the BA 1.0 rules, so I take a lot of reviews from historical gamers with a grain of salt. But, 2.0 has at least tried to address pretty much every single issue I had with 1.0, time will tell if those changes were effective, but from my read through they seem like it will be.

They're also going back and fixing a bunch of the National special rules, which worked but were far from balanced or optimal in 1.0.

So to your specific questions:
1. Answered above.
2. Generally most issues were
3. Low in terms of accuracy, it's kind of movie-accuracy where stuff fits into general themes
4. Infantry vehicle balance is meh? They tried doing tank based platoons, but I'm going to say that the tank gameplay in this game is kind of unsatisfying, but necessary.
5. So in 2.0, all machineguns get +1 shot and some got additional range. This makes MMGs, combined with other changes, decent although still clunky. MMG teams use these archaic gun team rules that treat MMGs like an artillery piece basically in that they have ridiculously limited movement. With a higher rate of fire, and maybe more range, they're a little more useful but mainly as a target for your opponent to shoot heavy weapons at to try and dislodge.
6. As mentioned above, the national books had some issues with national rules running the gamut from being non-existant, being a piece of equipment that was overpowered (German assault rifles), or being silly.

The good thing about 28mm WWII is that you're never lacking for rules to use your miniatures with. Even if Bolt Action ends up not being your thing, I can recommend Chain of Command as a game that has similarities, solid rules, and a bit more historical. Not better, but just a different style than Bolt Action. My group played both.

   
Made in us
Haughty Harad Serpent Rider





Richmond, VA

 creeping-deth87 wrote:
I'm sure threads like this come up a lot here so forgive me, but I'm curious about this game as I keep hearing about it and everything I've heard has been pretty positive. I love WWII and have played Flames of War and Battlegroup, so this wouldn't be my first foray into tabletop WWII. So I have a few questions...

1. In a really general sense, what's it like? I still play a lot of 40K and I've played Flames of War before, how does it compare to those in terms of gameplay mechanics?
2. Are the rules tight? I hate arguing over rules interpretations and RAW vs. RAI.
3. How accurate is it? I'm not really too picky in this regard, I just want to know how simple it would be to get forces from the same time period and same theater onto a table together.
4. What's the infantry/vehicle balance like? I've heard BA hearkens back to earlier editions of 40K and in terms of scale a typical game is some blokes and a tank. Is that right?
5. I recall reading on this forum that machineguns in the game were seldom ever taken and were terrible. Was this rectified in 2nd edition? It would be very disappointing if such an iconic weapon in the war was so dismal on the tabletop.
6. What are the 'codices' like? I know there are 'armies of...' books, but there also appears to be theater books as well like Battlegrounds of Europe. What's usually used and what are the key differences there?

Thanks a lot for your help guys.


1. You'll see a lot of people say Bolt Action is "1940k", but they are wrong. They are 28mm platoon-level games, but the mechanics of the game systems are completely different. Activation is random, forcing you to plan and react to changing battlefield conditions; pinning and suppression allow you to control your enemy; close quarters is very deadly and the only good way to make enemy infantry move from a well defended position. So, it's far closer to emulating the 20th century battlefield in a fairly elegant and simple fashion.

2. Yes, especially with the new edition. With 4 years of first edition and tons of tournament feedback and the primary designer being actively involved with the playerbase, pretty much all the nonsense that people pulled off in first edition has been fixed. Several of the big tournament players helped in crafting the new edition in order to fix old exploits and to make sure no new ones were created.

3. It is as accurate as you make it. A lot of historical gamers immediately hate it because it has points - but like most grognards, they groan first and ask questions never. It's actually addressed in the rulebook - where it says, paraphrasing, play this game historically using historical scenarios and historical TO&E, but if you want to play a pick up game, use the points and platoon selectors. I've been playing and running BA events for years, and it's super easy to make a fun totally historical scenario for people to play, and then there's "hey man you want to do 1000 points this Friday after work?"

4. Assuming we're talking about playing with points, it's up to you. Some players love bringing a tank, some don't - my buddy plays Commandos with no armor support at all and does quite well. I however love taking a tank with my Fallschirmjager when I play them. Tanks are even better in second edition, as veteran tanks can easily ignore the pinning effects of weapons that can't hurt them (think of a 37mm shot bouncing off the front armor of a Tiger and it not caring). Expanding on your question, the "normal" game of Bolt Action is a reinforced infantry platoon - infantry squads with attached weapons such as mortar teams and whatnot, and maybe a tank, and transports. There's the "Tank War" expansion which flips it, so you field armored platoons with attached infantry squads. Tank games are definitely fun to play, but tend to be when players have a ton of tanks (which will happen) and want to have fun blasting each other with big guns.

5. Yes, MG's were iffy in first edition, but thankfully we're not in first edition. LMG's (squad-level are fantastic, never leave home without them. They have a 50% range increase over your standard rifleman and put out four times as many dice (or five times, if you're German). Your three-man MMG support teams (machine guns on tripods with dedicated loader/spotting team) get an extra die. (I'm actually not sure what Vetrucio is talking about, as weapons teams are more maneuverable now than before - MMG teams can rotate in place and fire, for instance, in second edition)

6. The Armies Of... books detail all the units for that force, plus different platoon selectors based on historical battles, and any special rules. The Theatre books have tons of scenarios for those theatres and maybe some new units that were specific to that - mainly for the historically minded players. And the new Campaign books, starting with Battle of the Bulge next month, are designed for people to play particular battles as a campaign.

"...and special thanks to Judgedoug!" - Alessio Cavatore "Now you've gone too far Doug! ... Too far... " - Rick Priestley "I'd rather put my testicles through a mangle than spend any time gaming with you." - Richard, TooFatLardies "Doug is being a gak!" - Anonymous "We need a Doug Craig in every store." - Warlord Games 
   
 
Forum Index » Historical Miniature Games: WW1 to Modern
Go to: