April 01, 1950,
Great Blue army of 220 units opposed to Big Red army of 218 units
for a battle of complexity 2.22 at Division(XX) level
on a 25 Km/Hex map
for 200 turns of Full Week each.
by Curt Chambers submited on 08-12-2012
Rugged-Defense Playing Statistics
Playable: Hotseat, PBEM, Blue PO, Red PO
Many thanks to my playtesters: Ben, Pelle, and Tim. And to the members of TDG.nu for their valuable input.
1. ICON COLORS
Yellow, Green, Brown, White, and Black are minor countries. Yellow and Green are controlled by Red, and the rest controlled by Blue.
This scenario is a re-make of the Avalon Hill boardgame classic "Blitzkrieg", later released as "Blitzkrieg 75". It is a set-piece battle which depicts a hypothetical confrontation between 2 nearly identical major powers, with several minor countries caught in the middle.
Unless noted otherwise, all Events and Theater Options apply equally to both sides.
3. GAME OPTIONS
The scenario is best played with all game options turned ON except for "No Borders" and "High Supply".
4. VICTORY CONDITIONS
The scenario stops and a side wins a decisive victory when the opposing capital is occupied. Otherwise, the game will run the full length and victory determined normally.
5. GAME LENGTH
The boardgame from which this scenario is drawn did not have a fixed length. The game ran indefinitely until a capitial was captured or exhaustion set in.
For our purposes the game will be fixed at 200 turns, which is about 4 years of war. That should be plenty of time for the better player to gain an advantage.
There is also a "short" game option which either player may choose. This will end the game sometime between Turns 25-40 (depending on when the option was chosen and a random event range)
The Theater Option appears on Turn 1 and is removed after Turn 10. Thus players will have 10 weeks of combat to determine if it is in their best interest to stop the conflict early.
All rules apply, and the game is fully playable, in either the short or full versions. However some features, such as strategic bombing, will have minimal impact during the short game.
Players should agree beforehand whether to use the option, not use it, or let each player decide on their own during the course of the game.
6. WAR PRODUCTION
The scenario mimics the boardgame's economic model of conquer and control. The capture of cities will strengthen one's own forces while weakening those of his opponent.
6.1. Capturing Minor Capitals
For each minor country capital that is captured the controlling side will get a +5 bonus to supply and a 25% increase in replacements. The opponents numbers are reduced by the same amount.
These effects will take place as often as a capital changes hands. Note that in the beginning of the game players may not see much of a change since both sides are capturing capitals at the same time.
The capital of BROWN does not affect either side's supply or replacements.
6.2. Capturing Opponents Home Cities
Capturing one of an opponent's home cities will result in his supply dropping by -2 and his replacements by 10%. This applies to each city captured and is non-reversible. The captor does not receive any corresponding benefit.
6.3. Replacement Level Indicator
The starting Rifle Squad replacements for each side are set to exactly 100. You can refer to this number at any time to easily determine how much your replacements have been increased/decreased.
7. AIRBORNE DROPS
Aside from the small air transport allowance, players may make 2 large airborne drops per game. To make an airborne drop choose the appropriate Theater Option. On the following turn ONLY, your air transport will be increased to 1000 (enough to drop 2 divisions).
After a 4 turn delay, the Theater Option for the 2nd jump will appear and is executed in the same manner.
8. SEABORNE INVASIONS
Players are allowed one Amphibious Invasion per game. To start the process choose the appropriate Theater Option. Your Sea Transport will then be temporarily reduced to zero for 8 turns (to model the mustering of shipping for the invasion).
During this 8 week prep time you should start moving your invasion force to their embarkation ports to guarantee that they are ready and rested when the time comes.
On the 7th turn (D-1) your Expeditionary Force HQ units will arrive. This should serve as a heads up that the invasion starts on the following turn.
After the 8 turns are up your Sea Transport is set to 4000 (make sure to read the situation briefing screen so you don't miss it). This is D-Day. On D+1 your shipping drops to 2000 and on D+2 it drops to 1000. After that, it returns to its pre-invasion level of 400.
Each invadable beach has a supply point in the center hex which is set between 10% - 70%. The closer an enemy beach is to the nearest home port the greater the supply point will be.
Note: The players start with 400 Sea Transport points that they are free to use as they see fit aside from the above invasion rules.
9. PO RESTRICTIONS
The Airborne Drops and Seaborne Invasions rules are disabled when playing against the PO. A Turn 1 event will cancel those Theater Options. If you start the game in hotseat mode, and later switch to the PO after Turn 1, the options will appear but you shouldn't use them. The PO is especially vulnerable to this kind of warfare and won't react properly, thereby destroying playbalance.
10. STRATEGIC BOMBING
Each side has 14 Industry targets - 6 for supply, 6 for replacements, and 2 for transportation, clustered in the capital area. If an opponent eliminates one of these targets (by bombing or other means) it will have detrimental effects to the owning player.
Each supply target destroyed will reduce supply by 2 or 1. Each replacement target destroyed will reduce replacements by 8%. If the transportation target is destroyed Rail Transport and supply radius are reduced.
When a target is destroyed another will take its place. If the 2nd target is destroyed then the owning player's supply, replacements, or transportation values are further reduced.
The destruction of all targets will reduce a country's supply & replacements by 1/3, and their transportation ability by 1/2.
11. PO NOTES
The Airborne Drops and Seaborne Invasions provisions are disabled when playing against the PO. A Turn 1 event will cancel those Theater Options. If you start the game in hotseat mode, and later switch to the PO after Turn 1, the options will appear but you shouldn't use them. The PO is especially vulnerable to this kind of warfare and won't react properly, thereby destroying playbalance.
Also, the PO will choose the short game about 25% of the time, so you'll never know when it is going to end early.
12. DESIGNER'S NOTES
12.1. Think about it
The scenario is a simulation of a boardgame that was a simulation of a campaign that never occured. As I was designing Blitzkrieg the scenario, I was constantly tempted to implement ideas I had on how to enhance the game. But each step I took away from the original boardgame concept presented additional problems of playability and balance. Ultimately, I decided on a strict interpretation of the original concept.
The map is an exact duplication of the boardgame, enhanced for TOAW purposes.
The OOBs are almost an exact copy. I changed some names to avoid TOAW naming conflicts, and added some home defense garrisons as well as physical troops for the neutral countries (the boardgame represented their armies in the abstract).
The TOEs are rather generic and designed to achieve the proper balance. Where possible, I used generic (non-country specific) equipment. When generic equipment was not available I chose late 40's and 50's U.S. equipment. I didn't see a need to modify the database for such a small deviation.
12.5. VICTORY CONDITIONS
I fudged the victory conditions to allow for a fixed length game because, quite simply, no one is going to play a 500 TOAW scenario. It doesn't matter that most games will end after 100 turns or so due to the capture of a capital. I had to set a reasonable game length.
The first version of the boardgame contained a supply system that mandated the capturing of cities to support large armies. Avalon Hill's 1975 version refined these rules somewhat but the game was still oriented towards a conquer and multiply type sypply engine. The supply rules I set up for the scenario were to replicate that system, as well as encouraging players to forge ahead and not withdraw into a tight little circle around their capital.
12.7. STRATEGIC BOMBING
STRATEGIC BOMBING: Bombing rules were completely overhauled for version 2.2 (and revised again in 3.0), and better model the system used in the boardgame.
12.8. SEABORNE INVASIONS
This was the hardest part of the scenario to design, and probably the part that has the least resemblence to the boardgame. The boardgame's amphibous assault rules were actually quite advanced for the day. There were limits as to how many units could be at sea, sea movement zones, and naval supremacy rules based on the number of controlled ports.
In my initial design, I managed to come pretty close to the above, but found that it required about 200 events (300 if including the PO). What I wound up with here, is a system that does pretty good at duplicating the effects of an invasion, without strictly copying each step from the boardgame.
And speaking of the PO, I just could not get the PO to execute invasions the way I wanted. In addition, the PO is incredibly vulnerable to being invaded without assigning a ridiculous number of units to beach duty. The final dissapointing choices were to disable all sea transport in PO game, use up a hundred events, or slap down a series of house rules. I chose the first option.
12.9. PROGRAMMED OPPONENT
Except for seaborne invasions, the PO isn't too bad in this scenario. The game depicts the type of linear slugfest that the PO is usually good at. In addition, I added some variability to strategic bias and set up 5 objective tracks to keep the game entertaining against the PO.
Curt Chambers, Sept 2006