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Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Trig Capuzzo (1941) - a Western Desert battle

I think my first ever wargame may have a WWII Western Desert tank battle: Airfix 8th Army and Afrika Korps, Crusaders and Panzers, and I guess Donald Featherstone rules. Since then I've had occasional Western Desert dabblings, but I've been put off by the fact that desert battles suffer from the same fundamental problem as naval games: lack of terrain features limits the complexity of tactical options and thereby limits the number of interesting decisions to be made.

Well, last week we returned to the Western Desert and had a rip-roaring good time. Bob Mackenzie is working on a WWII variant of "Bloody Big BATTLES!". We tried his variant out for the first time using his scenario for the 1941 battle of Trig Capuzzo. It's a small battle so was ideal for a playtest, and it gave us a chance to get Dave's fine collection of 1/300 armour on the table.

Assorted British armour from Dave's arsenal

Despite this being a first time with unfamiliar rules, the game rocked along rapidly - so much so that we got through the whole scenario twice in two and a half hours. (Two British victories, as it happened.)

This being a playtest, plenty of discussion points came up and suggestions for changes. Bob and I will mull these over and no doubt the rules will evolve a fair bit yet before reaching some kind of stable final version, but it's looking very promising. A WWII game may well feature in next year's Bash Day BBB convention (Oxford UK, Saturday 18 February 2017, if you're interested).

Check out Bob's website for the Trig Capuzzo scenario and many other excellent historical scenarios for WWII and some more modern tank battles.