Sunday, August 30, 2015

Firestorm and the City: Online FoW Caen Campaign

Starting November 1st, I am going to host an online Flames of War, Firestorm: Caen campaign and you can participate! Rounds will be played over a series of weeks. Participation will be open to any who are interested in participating. In this post I will outline how the campaign will work and how you can participate.



You can see all of the latest campaign posts by clicking on this link.

The Campaign
The campaign will be run using the Firestorm: Caen campaign. The campaign follows the British and Canadian forces in Normandy around the city of Caen from June 6 to July 20, 1944 as they battle with German forces. The campaign part of the game will be played between myself and another general who is still to be announced. Each campaign turn will take approximately two and a half weeks. After we have played a campaign turn, emails will be sent out to players who will then choose their location and mission to play a Flames of War games to determine the victor at each campaign location. For games, the players will be assigned choose a mission and Firestorm troops (additional 100-300 points of troops in designated units or an extra points allotment, will be capped at 1 Firestorm troop per side so games are not too unbalanced). Players will have two weeks to complete their turn. They will then submit their results to determine the victor at each location.

Flames of War Firestorm Campaign links
Here are some links to the campaign files for those interested. You don't need to read or understand the campaign mechanics to enjoy the campaign or play games as part of the campaign.
Introduction to the campaign
Campaign walkthrough
Campaign download

Map from Flames of War.

Narrative Campaign
You will have the opportunity to participate in games with a historical background. You will play games that are a bit unbalanced where you are fighting difficult odds. This is a chance to play Flames of War in a narrative setting without have to organize your local gaming group to all play a campaign. Make sure both you and your opponent are in agreement that you are playing a narrative (and possibly slightly unbalanced) game and that you both enjoy your games.

Dates
The campaign will run from November 1, 2015 until completion in January, 2016. This gives you two months to prepare your forces!

Forces
For this campaign, my goal is to have armies be as historically accurate as possible. I realize that many people are limited by their armies and local opponents. Be creative! You can borrow armies to help with historical match ups.

All forces should be from Late War. I would recommend a base army size of 1400-1650 points (1500 recommended) to keep the Firestorm troops balanced. You and your opponent are free to play any points value you wish. The Firestorm troops will have a larger impact on lower points value games.

If you are unsure if your force is appropriate, ask yourself if those troops could conceivably have fought in Normandy at this time (ex. not Soviets or Hungarians, not Comets). To help, I've compiled a little list to help you chose your force. This list is not comprehensive, if you want to use Free French or some German prisoner force using another list, then feel free. My goal is for a thematic and (somewhat) historical campaign.

  • Best
    • British and Canadian infantry, tank and mechanized forces from Operation Overlord
    • German infantry, tank, mechanized, fallschirmjager, and fortified forces from Atlantik Wall
    • British paratroopers
  • Good
    • American tank, mechanized, paratrooper, glider, and infantry lists from Operation Overlord
    • British and Canadian lists from Market Garden and pdfs that use historical equipment (ex. Market Garden 11th AD has the same equipment, different rating)
    • German lists from other briefings with historical equipment for Normandy (ex. Devil's Charge Panzers with Panzer IVs = good, Devil's Charge Sturmtiger lists = less good)
  • Okay
    • Allied fortified lists
    • German, US, British, Canadian lists that have equipment from later lists (ex. Patton and Jumbos)

  • Last Resort (use these if you have no other options are really, desperately want to participate or if your only opponent won't compromise on the force they want to use)
    • Armies that did not fight on the Normandy front (ex. Soviets, Hungarians, Romanians, Italians, etc.)

Tiger = Good. Captured KV-1 = Not Good.

Signing up
Sign ups will open on October 1st. On October 1st I will post instructions up on Rust and the City on how to register for the campaign. There are unlimited spots available. Please think carefully about joining this campaign. Consult with your possible opponent and prepare your forces. You do not have to play every game but please only join if you are willing to follow the campaign guidelines, have a willing opponent, and are committed to trying to complete as many games as possible.

Reports
After completing a game I will ask you to submit the following short form to me. Each result will be copied and pasted into a report on the blog for each turn. If you would like to write a full write-up I am happy to link to them on your blog.

      • German player: Batman playing Grenadiers
      • Allied player: The Joker playing Canadian infantry
      • Mission: Breakthrough
      • Campaign location: Juno Beach
      • Result: 4-3 Allied Victory
      • Report: 3-5 sentences describing a narrative of your game (optional)
      • Picture: Attach a single picture of your game (optional)

Prizes
At the conclusion of the campaign, I will prepare prizes for five lucky players. Each little report you submit will give you an entry into the final prize draw. One player will win a Panzer IV command (1iC and 2iC Panzer IVs). Four other winners will win a plastic tank box generously donated by Battlefront!

FAQs
How many spaces are there for players?
There are unlimited spaces. Each campaign area will be assigned to multiple players and an aggregate score will be assigned to each area to determine the winner.

What happens if I can't complete my game in the allotted time?
The winner for your area will be calculated using the results of all players for that area. If there are no results the area will be decided as per the General's Game rules (dice roll).

But I really, really want to use my ________________.
Please see the section above on Forces. My preference is for Normandy themed forces but everyone is welcome to participate.

Do I have to use the Firestorm Troops assigned?
No, you will be assigned a potential Firestorm Troop based on the campaign. You will also be offered a potential points value replacement that you can add to your force (ex. 1500 point game and 1 infantry platoon Firestorm Troops (200 points). You could use the troops or 1500 + 200 points).

My opponent doesn't want to play unbalanced games.
Where possible, I will try to make Firestorm allocations roughly balanced. This is a narrative campaign with games that may not always be balanced. If you and your opponent are not in agreement then this may not be the campaign for you.

How will I know what sector/mission/Firestorm Troops I am using?
For each round you will receive an email with a short narrative, mission, sector, and terrain for the mission.

Do I have to use the same force/briefing/list/nation for the entire campaign?
No. Feel free to change it up as you please.

Do Firestorm troops count for company morale and number of platoons?
Yes. They are a normal part of your army. Some troops may have the "Allies" special rule (ex. British infantry in an American company)

How will my games be different?
Games will be played using standard Flames of War rules. You will have additional Firestorm troops in some games. Some games may include special terrain recommendations (ex. bocage) or missions (ex. beach landings) but these will mostly just be recommendations. For some games I may request other things (ex. a British paratrooper force in Surrounded, or British tanks in bocage country) if you are able to do them.

For Game 1 do I have to use the D-Day beach landing scenario?
No, it will be an option. If you do not want to play the scenario or do not have the book then another defensive mission will be provided.



Did I miss anything? Feel free to post comments and questions in the comments section below.

To see all of the campaign, click on this link to see the latest progress!

65 comments:

  1. Sounds very interesting Cameron. I'll need to see if I can find an opponent that's willing to take part after I move!

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    Replies
    1. I hope you manage to find an opponent. If not, maybe we can work out another way for you to be involved!

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    2. MTH, I was just about to write exactly the same (only without the 'moving' bit.

      Now, as long as you tell me that you are in fact moving right down to the South West coast of England, we'll be fine...!

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    3. It's too bad there isn't a vassal module for Flames of War. That would be a lot of little bits to move though. Then you'd both be sorted.

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    4. Not that far south I'm afraid Drax!

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  2. Hi Cameron, consider the Breakthrough Assault Guys on board!

    I might be a little preoccupy with the birth of my next child at the end of Oct for the first week or so, but my British will get a few games in for sure :-)

    I will have 51st Highlanders, 7th Armoured, Guards Armoured and a Churchill company to choose from so plenty of options. Shame it'll end before our Normandy tournament on the 20th February, could have been good to tie it in.

    Thanks Ben

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    Replies
    1. Hey Ben,
      That's great! I think I will assign groups all to the same area if we have enough players. It will make for some thematic games. I'd like to try and get my group organized for a 3 tables side by side game for operation goodwood.

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  3. Hey Cameron,

    Count us in! My opponent and I would love to go along with this! We were just planning to do a Campaign this fall ourselves.

    Thanks - and perfect timing!

    -Cameron Brimhall

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    Replies
    1. Hey Cameron,
      Great name! Sounds great. What Forces do you have?

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    2. Hey,

      We got everything British! Tank Brigades, Independent Armored Brigades, Infantry Divisions, Armored Divisions, you name it! We'd be happy to recreate any British Unit in Normandy. Just no Motor Companies!! As for the Germans, we got Grenadiers, Falchirmjagers, a Schwere Panzer Birgade, and some Panthers as well. No Panzer IV's. We're going as historically accurate as we can get!

      Thanks,

      -Cameron

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    3. Wow, sounds great! The British Motor companies are pretty fragile in Flames of War anyways.

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  4. Looks fun! Just need to find an opponent.

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    Replies
    1. Good luck! Even if you can only manage a game or two that is fine.

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  5. Sounds really cool...I will have to consult my list of opponents and see if we can get a pair.

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    Replies
    1. Sounds good Stanley. You've got a few months to wrangle up an opponent!

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  6. I also wanted to add, if anyone wants to play a game for the campaign using battlegroup, chain of command, or bolt action rules we can arrange to accommodate that as well. It would be cool to have some bolt action smaller stuff mixed in with the flames of war larger games.

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  7. What an amazing idea: especially if I can play with both my 15mm and 28mm 11AD!

    Right then...an opponent...

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    Replies
    1. It would be fun to organize the 11th AD all in one area for one of the turns. You'll have to find yourself an opponent!

      Drax, I have a homework task for you... Given your love for 11th AD, can you correlate their location at different times with the Firestorm map sectors? Just a quick idea of where 11th AD fought. It would be cool to try and recreate their position for 1 or more of the turns.

      I have my 11th AD British and one of my regular opponents (who is sadly moving soon) also has 11th AD shermans and cromwells.

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    2. Hmm...I'm no rivet-counter, but I'll happily give it a shot...'until I get killed or you find someone better'!

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    3. Okay. Short answer (applicable to your campaign map) places them thus:

      Post D-Day Landing:
      June 13-14 - Bulk of 11AD lands and is based around CREULLY [ref. A3]

      OP EPSOM:
      > June 26 - 11AD moves S towards R. Odon, fighting around CHEUX [ref. C2]
      > June 27 - 11AD Crosses R. Odon and establishes bridgehead; gets as far as the village of Baron and HILL 112 [ref. D4]
      > June 28-30 Defence of and eventual withdrawal from HILL 112 [ref. D4]
      > Division rests around Brécy.

      OP GOODWOOD:
      >July 18 11AD departs Escoville [in ref. B6] and swings down through
      CAGNY [ref. C7]
      > July 19 11AD fighting (and disappointment) around BOURGÉBOUS Ridge [ref. D5]
      >11AD then withdrawn to echelon back up in CREULLY [ref. A3].

      Hope this helps...

      - Chris.

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    4. CORRECTION:

      OP EPSOM - amend to read the following:

      > June 26 - 11AD moves S towards R. Odon, fighting around CHEUX [ref. C2]
      > June 27 - 11AD Crosses R. Odon and establishes bridgehead; gets as far as the village of Baron and HILL 112 [ref. D4]
      > June 28 - July 6th - Defence of and eventual withdrawal from HILL 112 [ref. D4]
      > July 7th-17th(ish) - Division rests around Brécy.

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    5. You are the man! Now we just need another 11AD player or two. Sadly my friend here who plays them is moving soon.

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    6. I don't suppose he's moving to South Devon in the UK, perchance...?

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    7. Ha-ha, no. He's moving Saskatchewan, in central Canada. Unfortunately about a 12-15h drive from here I think.

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    8. Sorry to jump in Cameron,am going to post to up about the campaign with my group and see if we can sort something out. Admiral Drax whereabouts in south Devon are you based there's a small group of us playing flames in Plymouth now don't know if your close to us at all. We've got a FB page Flames of War world war 2 Wargaming Plymouth to arrange games and meetups etc

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  8. I better get the lads to give the Tetrarchs a good service and fuel check then, we ride once more in to the breach! :)

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    Replies
    1. I was thinking of some special fun for paratroopers :-)

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  9. The fine WWI-gamer type gents of TCOW are at your disposal!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. well... so are the WWI guys as well ;)

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    2. What about the WWII guys? not all of us play WWI related games :P

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    3. Ha-ha, I expect all of New Zealand to be at my disposal :-).

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  10. I think it would help make the battles more historical, if the terrain was made as historical as possible by making a map of the battlefield available.

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    Replies
    1. I think I will suggest possible terrain for some of the rounds. I don't want to be too prescriptive though as I want people to be able to use the terrain they have. Players are welcome to go into as much detail as they would like with terrain. If you would like, you could use air photos or maps to make the board for your own games.

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  11. Cameron mate, this sounds like a blast. I think me and my regular FoW opponent should be able to play regularly enough with my Canadian infantry and Shermans and his.... all things German. I might even have another German opponent who can show me the ropes in Chain of Command for something different too.

    Guess I'll be painting up some more FoW models during the 6MMRPC afterall. :)

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    Replies
    1. Great. I'm excited to see what you pull together. You could do an aar on your blog and I could cross post it here.

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    2. Chain of Command looks to be ace Dai: I've absolutely devoured the rules - devoured them!

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  12. I would be interested in this Cameron. This is Scott, btw.

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    Replies
    1. Sounds good, Scott. I thought you might be.

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  13. Consider us in,We got most of the Forces on lis,USa,RIfle company,PAra and Glider.As for the GErmans alot of armor and Mech Infantry and Falls Ready to defeat the Allies.

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  14. I'm interested for sure. Must have a look if I can find a German to fight first but is shouldn't be a problem. There is at least one active German in my local club.

    This might even give me some pointers on how I should organize my own Firestorm: Market Garden. =)

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  15. Cameron,

    I am pretty sure a bunch of us Vancouver players will be on board, Scott and I are in for sure.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Great. Wish I could join you guys for the Nov 11 games.

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  16. Really looking forward to this!

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  17. I would play here in Huelva Vs an American player. Could we participate?

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    Replies
    1. Of course. I know everyone is limited by their local opponents too. FoW is still a bit of a niche game.

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  18. Hi Cameron just read the full firestorm Caen book and am eagerly awaiting the sign ups looking to roll out my British against my friends freshly painted SS haven't list built yet but looking to run the 11th AD Regards Daniel

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  19. Hi Cameron, We have a group of 4-6 in Pittsburgh very interested in playing. I'll sign up when it goes official. We can play most of the units present with accurate figures. Thanks!

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  20. I can hardly wait! I'm working on my Grenadiers, and I've got one friend that plays British Airborne and one playing a standard infantry list. Would there be a way to arrange to play them both in a campaign turn, since we're kind of the only local players?

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    Replies
    1. Yes, we can definitely accomodate that.

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  21. Hi Cameron very interested in joining along with 7 mates 4 allied four axis should be good fun

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  22. Hi Cameron,

    Here you have four players eager to join. One UK and US player and two Germans. We'll try to play it as much historic as possible :)

    Cheers,
    Milan

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  23. My favorite thing to play in FoW is the axis foreign volunteers (Belgian,Dutch,Estonian,etc). There were multiple Ost battallions at Normandy, some fighting very well (Georgians, Ukrainians) while others were pathetic. Will/can confident trained Ost Batallions come into play?

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    Replies
    1. Sure, if they were in Normandy then they are perfect!

      Delete
  24. This looks great! How long is this planned to go? How many games should me and my gaming partner plan on doing/be committed for? Would it be possible to post some sort of schedule? It would be great if you could post a running tally of progress. For such a big event there doesn't seem to be much activity or progress based on the web page content. For some reason to me figuring out how to sign up is really difficult. Is there a link somewhere?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. If you go to the home page of the blog, http://rustandthecity.blogspot.ca/, you will see the most recent updates. We are now in to turn 3. Turn 4 is starting this week.

      Delete
  25. great if you could post a running tally of progress. For such a big event there doesn't seem to be much activity or progress based on the web page content. For some reason to me figuring out how to sign up is really difficult. Is there a link somewhere?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Scott,
      There are posts for each turn. To sign up, just send me an email at rustandthecity at gmail.com. Or you can just read each turn as outlined on the blog and submit games for the current turn. I've been update progress on twitter (@rustandthecity) and in a facebook group for the campaign.

      Delete
    2. As for activity, there have been 143 games completed so far. This post was just the introduction post to tell people about the campaign before it started.

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    3. great, thank you. And sorry for the double post there.

      Delete

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