Skip to main content

6th Fleet: A quick look


I might be a Balkowski fan boi. There are things he does in his designs that just seem to work for me. I like good tables printed on the map, that are loaded with possibility, I like irregular turn sequences that don't use chit pulls, and I like the way he front loads his games with tense challenging decisions. He creates those smokey room nail brighter moments. 


In 6th fleet this is done with your airforce. At the start of each three turn day you have to decide how many planes to allocate to strategic air missions and to which air zones they will be sent. Both players do this in secret. It is a mental game of chicken, as you need those fighters for CAP (combat air patrol) over your carriers and airbases but you also want to clear the Black Sea so your recon planes don't get downed by MIGs, but your opponent only has limited interceptors too, what will he or she do?


It's a game about guessing and gambling and then watching the dice roll as a T16 bombers attempt to knock out the Nimtz. This game is a good Sandy Woodward simulator, how cautious should I be?


If you are looking for a spec for this game, its about middle weight in rules, with several scenarios that can be played within 3 hours. The advanced game will take a bit of grokking but I found the regular rules easy enough to process. You get a ton of 80s mil tech hardware to play with. Weirdly, Russian subs seem to be a bit weak compared with USN, but other than that its great.

Comments

  1. I like the sound of that- I'd happily give it ago. Sign me up as Red Air Force Commander.

    Cheers,

    Pete.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Quick Looks; Red Star / White Eagle

I generally hate it when people describe designs or ideas in games as dated, because many of the most innovative games  are older than I am. Equally it implies there is something innately good about new designs, which I don't think there is.

Dune is arguably the best multiplayer 'war' boardgame and the 70s basic DnD is in my view still the best RPG. I wasn't born until the late 80s and didn't discover these things to the mid 2000s so this isn't nostalgia doing my thinking, its just that some old ideas are better than new ones, despite our apparent 'progress'.



But having said all this Red Star / White Eagle is a dated game design. And this matters if you are looking at popping £70 on a new reprint of it from Compass Games. I am a wary cheapskate so I picked up a second hand copy with a trashed box of ebay for £20. It was worth it, but only just.


Red Star / White Eagle is a GDW 1979 Hex and Counter wargame covering the 1920 Russo - Polish war. Everything …

The Korean War by Victory Games is Awesome

I've played two slightly truncated games of the Korean War recently and it has quickly become my favourite hex and counter game.

This is a mid 1980s design out of Victory Games an off shoot of the dying (or dead I forget which by this date) SPI games but based in New York under the Umbrella of Avalon Hill. It'd designed by Joe Balkoski and covers the first 12 months of the war, which is where all the action was in history, at the divisional and regimental scale. Each turn lasts a month and you have 12 turns taking around an hour each. It has two medium sized paper hex maps that put together will fill a typical dining room table. As it is a divisional scale game (to non war gamers that means most units represent a full division of an army which is a lot of dudes), you don't have that many counters, which means no big counter stats and not too much time sorting them out at the start of play. This scores big points in my book.






Yesterday I played the Communists and my friend, Da…

Quick Play Thru: Washington's Crossing

Being a man who likes diversity I bought / pre-ordered 4 games for Christmas about dudes in flashy coats with muskets marching around road networks. I’ve already Quick looked at Nappys Nemesis 1813, Metz is yet to be released from P500, Autumn of Glory is on the shelf, so this weekend I have played Washington’s Crossing.




The Patriot opening more or less followed the script. Washington moved with his stack, crossed the Delaware with decent movement and ferry rolls and come morning was sat just outside Trenton next to Rall’s Hessian garrison. The American gets a rather scripted +5 to surprise rolls when attacking Trenton, plus it being dawn and a prepared attack gave Washington very favourable odds but the roll was terrible and Rall escaped with only 25% losses and a retreat.
Further south Greene collected a few detachments of militia and drove the other Hessian garrisons north.



The Hessians forced marched out wide forcing Washington to either hunt them down for a few extra vps, or look el…