Great War Bolt Action

  • I enjoyed a great game of Great War Bolt Action this weekend with my friends. This was my first time running the game as a GM. I had six players and it was a great turn out. The scenario I devised was for late in the war, after the Hindenburg Line had collapsed and the entente allies are engaged in a general advance against the retreating German army.  A platoon of the 1er Tirailleurs Algeriens supported by Renault tanks advance on a ruined village as Germans wait in ambush. Most of the figures are from the Wargames Atlantic line.

    The French troops were mostly Veteran, while the Germans were classed as regular to reflect their war-weariness and tendency to throw up their hands quickly by this phase of the war. 

    There are no trenches. The Germans are in full retreat by October 1918 and are fighting from hastily prepared defences.

    We created a hidden deployment system using numbered tokens with grass flocking.  You can see one of them on the inside curve of the stone wall. This  created a fun fog of war situation and forced the attackers to advance with caution.  The entire battle field was heavilly cratered and we applied a general soft cover save for evereything except the road.

    You can see the French squad on the right has collected about 8 pin markers. They took fire from several German squads, an MG 08 and a grenatenwerfer for two turns. I like the way the Bolt Action morale system works, forcing troops to go to ground when they come under effective fire. I also like the turn system, where coloured dice are drawn from a bag, rather than the ususal I go you go turn system. I have to say Bolt Action is a solid game.  We had a great time and this is definately one of the games we will be playing regularly.

  • Did you use the fan made Great War army books for the game, or just the core rules and ww1 models? Either way is great, I'm sure, given that the gameplay loop of bolt action is so satisfying. 

  • @Thomas Brewer I believe there is even an FPW fan version of Boltaction out there ( which is not surprising).  

  • @Thomas Brewer 

    I mostly used the version posted on the Warlord site. I have also seen a fan version as you said. 

    They both need some tweeking. I found the cost of the Renault tank needs to be higher. I also think rifle grenades need longer range. Historical doctrin was to deploy them with the lmg. So they need a range of at least 24 inches to be used historically.


  • Here is the supplement available from Warlord:

    There one is also not bad:

    As I mentioned, you will want to tweek the point value for tanks after a little play testing.

    Next time I play, the Renault tank will be 70 points, not 35 for example. 

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