The game "Carentan, June 10 - 13, 1944" presents the struggles in Normandy between Germany and the Americans. In the initial phase of the battle, the enemy armies used elite airborne formations, and later less experienced mechanized troops. As a result, the factors of training and determination balanced, and the success of the Americans was determined by the advantage in materials and better coordination of combined weapons operations.
Could the fate of this battle have gone differently? At the tactical level, the German fallschirmjägers had the advantage, because they were able to use the buildings in persistent defense. However, shortages of ammunition and high losses forced them to leave Carentan. The Americans, in turn, consistently used artillery support and laboriously conquered the area.
These elements are well reflected in the "Great Battles of Small Units" system. A large random factor causes unexpected changes to the situation, and players need to react quickly and change their plans.
The game includes two scenarios. Purple Heart Lane depicts battles between paratroopers for control of Carentan. Players can use an optional rule and see what the outcome would be if the 17th SS Panzer Grenadier Division reached the battlefield earlier than it actually was.
The "Battle of Bloody Gulch" scenario is the American defense of Carentan against a German counterattack. American armored units are also taking part in this fight.
The complete game includes:
- A2 board;
- 216 die-cut tokens measuring 15x15 mm;
- rules of the game (8 pages);
- scenario card,
- auxiliary card;
- historical description.
Note: The game does not include a deck of cards that players must equip themselves.
Playing time: 4 hours.
A game for 2 people aged 12 and above.
Basic features of the "Great Battles of Small Units" system.
1. Players use the traditional 52-card deck to resolve all procedures. Thanks to this, cards played at the beginning of the game may have an impact on the final result. This is a big difference compared to throwing the dice that are independent of each other.
2. Units of only one army can be activated during a stage, and the fate decides which player has initiative. The chance of having the initiative varies with each stage. This forces players to plan their actions carefully and as effectively as possible, because in the next stage there may not be an opportunity to correct the mistakes.
3. Random events (sniper, change of orders, etc.) have been woven into the game, which can reverse the course of events and at the same time introduce players to the atmosphere of the battlefield.
4. Minor modifications to the basic rules allow the presentation of individual vehicles or guns that supported the combatants.
Due to the simple procedures, games based on the rules of this system are very well suited for people who are just starting their adventure with board games. Experienced players should also be satisfied, because they have to decide not only about the actions they take, but also about how to perform them.
Author: Adam Niechwiej
Year of publication: 2021