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Death Factory - A Campaign for Tide of Iron

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Design Notes

1 base set of Tide of Iron, 2 map / overlay sets, Days of the Fox and Normandy expansions needed to play.
This campaign is played on 5 linked maps. Each map is made up of 3 rows of 4 map tiles. You will notice that the ends of the maps overlap as each map is a continuation of the previous map. The Americans always enter from the west and the Germans always enter from the east. Play begins on map 1. The next maps is determined by the winner, making map selection dynamic.
Individual battles have no round limit, however the campaign is limited to a total of 60 rounds. Time management will be important to the American player. The reinforcements rules allow for fog of war since a player will never be sure what units the other player will commit during a battle. Campaign cards add more surprises to each battle since they are unknown until just before round 1 starts in each battle. Also, each side has it's own semi-historical advantages and disadvantages which should keep things interesting.
Scorecards are available at the end of this file to track the campaign status after each battle. Each battle should be playable in a single session but the entire campaign will take several sessions over a period of days, weeks, or months depending on the available time.

History

The battle for the Hürtgen forest was the longest, and perhaps, least talked about battle the Americans fought in WWII. It lasted for about 6 months during the fall and winter of 1944-1945. This campaign starts as the Americans approach the Siegfried line along the western border of Germany near Roetgen and ends with the assault on Castle hill (Hill 400) just west of Roer River. Over 20,000 American and German soldiers died in the battle, thus the nickname, "The Death Factory" was given to the area.

Rounds

60

Actions per side

4

Objective

  • The Americans must win on map 5 by the end of round 60 to win the campaign.
  • The Germans win if they prevent the Americans from achieving their objective.

Campaign Rules

Campaign Cards

Each player receives a set of (5) operations cards (see American or German starting section). Each player may put in play up to 2 of these cards at the start of any battle. Each card may be used during only one battle of the campaign then discarded so care should be taken in choosing when to use them. The cards to be used in each battle are not declared until after the starting units are deployed. Keep track of the remaining cards on the scorecard after each battle.

Unit Pool

The current unit pool consists of all units from the starting list that have not been lost or captured in previous battles. Units for any battle may only be drawn from the current unit pool of that side. The unit pool is updated after every battle. Weakened squad bases may be refilled after each battle at a cost of 1 command point per squad. All figures are replaced with regular infantry regardless of what the original figures where. This should be done as soon as a battle ends so the pool can be updated. The total amount of any figure type is limited to the starting list. German squads and vehicles that where lost in a battle or captured may not be replaced. American squad bases may be replaced with 4 regular infantry or any vehicles may be replaced at a cost of 4 command points each. Specialization tokens may not be replaced. Damaged vehicles of the winning side are repaired and returned to their pool undamaged after each battle. Heavily damaged vehicles are captured if you lost the battle. Lightly damaged vehicles are repaired and returned to the pool if they managed to escape after a battle. (see capture rules) Squads may be rebuilt between battles. This means that figures and tokens are not base specific and may be swapped around between bases within the pool. You only need to keep track of the total number of figures, bases, tokens and vehicles you had after each battle, not how they where assembled. Units may be assembled from the available pool, as needed, before and during a battle. Replacement figures and units may only be purchased after the end of a battle. Record new pool totals on your scorecard after each battle.

Battle Setup Instructions

Map 1 is played first. Each side may deploy up to 12 units (vehicles and/or squads) at the start of each battle. Squads are not required to be full strength to be deployed. The attacker (Americans in the first battle) sets up anywhere on the 4 map tiles on his/her end of the map. The defender may set up anywhere on the other 8 map tiles. The side with the initiative sets up first. Each player may draw 4 cards from the leadership and/or strategy decks before the start each battle. The defender in any battle receives 2 concealed squad tokens.
If the Americans win on map 1 play progresses to map 2. If they loose on map 1 it is replayed with the American player still being the attacker. All leadership and strategy cards are returned to their decks and reshuffled after each battle. The same decks are used in all battles.

Reinforcements and Retreats

Each side has the option to bring additional units onto a battlefield as reinforcements. These units are taken from the unit pool. They may be placed on the map during the status phase of each round on any hex bordering their edge of the map. Except that alpha, bravo and recon units may also be placed on hexes bordering the north and south sides of their sides starting map tiles, even if carried by a vehicle. The cost is 1 command per unit with a maximum of 4 units per round, per player. Units may enter carried by vehicles but all of the units count towards the limit. If a player has more than 16 units on a map at the end of the status phase, the operations card "Massive Confusion" is put in play for that player. This reflects problems with command and control of large forces. The card remains in play until the players unit total reaches 12 or less. The card is added or removed from play at the beginning of the action phase. It may effect both players at the same time if they both have more than 16 units on the map.
Units may withdraw from a battlefield at any time by moving off their side of the map (east or west) during the action phase. Alpha, bravo and recon units may also move off the north and south sides of their sides starting map tiles even if carried by a vehicle. Units that withdraw may not re-enter a map during that battle and are not returned to the pool until after that battle ends. Moving off a map from a border hex costs 1 movement point.

Battle Victory Conditions

Each map has 4 victory objectives. A battle ends when one side controls all 4 victory objectives at the end of any round. All 4 victory objectives must be controlled before the battle ends, even if one player has no units on the map. In the unlikely event of a draw the same map is replayed as a new battle with the same players as attacker and defender.

Initiative

The Americans have the initiative in the first battle. After the first battle, the winner has the starting initiative in the next battle. If the Germans win they have the option of defending or attacking in the next battle. If defending, the current map is replayed. If attacking the next lower # map is played. The Germans must always defend on map 5. The Americans must always attack if they won the previous battle. Record the initiative on the scorecard after each battle.

Unit Experience

At the end of each battle, infantry units which where used in that battle are marked with medals (bronze, silver or metal of honor) tokens. See the Normandy campaign rules for more detailed information. Add these tokens to the pool for use in future battles. Medal of honor squads that survive a battle may have all regular infantry figures in them replaced with elite infantry, if the figures are available, at no cost. The MoH token is retained after this upgrade.

Command Points

Command points may be saved and used in future battles and/or for replacements between battles. Command points are received for each command objective controlled plus 1 point for each victory objective controlled. Command points are collected in the command phase of every round including the last round of a battle. Record unused command points on your scorecard after a battle.

Special Rules

Map zones

Each map has 3 rows of 4 tiles. If the attacker wins, his starting row is considered zone 3. The center row is always zone 2 and the far row is zone 1. If the defender wins, zones 1 and 3 are reversed for the purpose of determining captured units.

Capture Rules

At the end of a battle, roll 1 die for each unit to determine which units are captured. Units in zone 3 escape on a roll of 5-6. Units in zone 2 escape on a roll of 4-6. Units in zone 1 escape on a roll of 3-6. Disrupted or heavily damaged units are always considered captured regardless of position. Pinned units escape on a roll of 6 regardless of position. Any anti-tank guns that are left on a map at the end of a battle are considered captured and are placed in the winners unit pool for use in future battles. All captured units are removed from the campaign.

Towed Anti-Tank Guns

As a single action, a fresh anti-tank gun may be towed by a fresh light vehicle up to it's full movement range. Both units are fatigued by this action. Both units must start the action in the same hex. No fire and movement is allowed.

Artillery Rules

(Area Attack rules in this section also apply to mortar and bombing attacks)
Establish contact rolls may be done once during each action turn (rather than round) at the cost of 1 action per try. Woods hexes give no cover for normal Area Attacks. Normal Area Attacks vs. buildings gain +3 firepower and hit on rolls of 4-6 for the purpose of determining possible building destruction.

Pillboxes

Pillboxes have a set facing that may not be changed. Machine gun crews in a pillbox may only fire in a 180° arc forward of the pillbox. Other units in a pillbox may fire normally.

Entrenchments

Entrenchments must be placed with a set facing. When attacked from the rear units in an entrenchment receive only +1 cover. Entrenchments do not remain on a map after a battle.

Smoke Shells

A mortar may, as an action, Lay Smoke using smoke shells within it's normal range. Normal LOS rules apply.

Optional Weather Deck

Remove the 2 "Extreme Heat" cards. Weather checks are done at the start of a battle and all in even numbered rounds. Shuffle the deck before each weather check.

American Starting Unit Pool

24 Squad bases
- 54 Regular Infantry
- 12 Elite Infantry
- 6 Officers
- 6 MG crews
- 6 Mortar crews

2x Medic
2x Engineer
2x Flamethrower
2x AntiTank
2x Alpha Unit
2x Recon

12 Sherman
4 M10 TD
6 M3A1
6 GMC CCKW 353
4 M1 AT Guns

Commander:
Norman D. Cota
Campaign Cards: (These operations cards may be used during only one battle then they are discarded.)
Inspiring Leadership (Op)
Double Time (Op)
Ammunition Depot (Op) (May place a depot in starting area before battle starts. Depot can be captured.)
Ultra (Op)
Merciless Assault (Op)
Permanent Strategy Cards: (These cards are always in effect.)
Supply priority (from Supply Deck I, no cost to activate)
Clear Mines (Op)
Lay Smoke (Op)
Leadership Decks:
Hero
Tactician (shared)
Strategy Decks:
Artillery Deck II
American Air Support Deck I (Remove the "Paratroopers" card.)

German Starting Unit Pool

24 Squad bases
- 54 Regular Infantry
- 12 Elite Infantry
- 6 Officers
- 6 MG crews
- 6 Mortar crews

2x Medic
3x Engineer
1x Flamethrower
2x AntiTank
2x Bravo Unit
2x Recon

5 Panzer IV
5 Panther
2 Tiger
2 King Tiger
2 Jagdpanzer IV
2 StuG III G
4 FlaK 36 AT Guns
6 SdKfz 251
6 Opel Blitz

Commander:
Walter Model
Campaign Cards: (These operations cards may be used during only one battle then they are discarded.)
Elite Tank Crew
Desperate Defenders
Camouflage
Tank Ace
Seize the Initiative
Permanent Cards: (These cards are always in effect)
Fuel Shortages (Op)
King Tiger Tanks (Op)
No Surrender (Op)
Enigma (Op)
Lay Razor Wire (Op)
Leadership Decks:
Watchdog
Tactician (shared)
Strategy Decks:
Artillery Deck I
German Air Support I (Remove the "Air Priority" and "Air Superiority" cards. Add +1 command cost to all cards in this deck.)

 

Linked campaign scenarios

127 Death Factory - The Siegfried Line Part 1
128 Death Factory - The Siegfried Line Part 2
129 Death Factory - Vossenack
126 Death Factory - Hürtgen
125 Death Factory - Hill 400

 

American Scorecard

Next Map / Initiative:

Rounds Remaining: Command Points:

Campaign Cards Remaining:

Inspiring Leadership
Double Time
Ammunition Depot
Ultra
Merciless Assault

Medals

Bronze:
Silver:
Metal of Honor:

Specializations

Medic:
Engineer:
FT:
AT:

Squad Bases:

Elite Infantry: 

Alpha:
Regular Infantry: 

MG Crew: 

Bravo:
Officer: 

Mortar Crew: 

Recon:
GMC CCKW 353: 

M3A1: 

Sherman:
M 10: 

M1 ATG:

 

 

German Scorecard

Next Map / Initiative:

Rounds Remaining: Command Points:

Campaign Cards Remaining:

Elite Tank Crew
Desperate Defenders
Camouflage
Tank Ace
Seize the Initiative

Medals

Bronze:
Silver:
Metal of Honor:

Specializations

Medic:
Engineer:
FT:
AT:

Squad Bases:

Elite Infantry: 

Alpha:
Regular Infantry: 

MG Crew: 

Bravo:
Officer: 

Mortar Crew: 

Recon:
Opel blitz:

SdKfz 251:

Panzer IV:
Tiger: 

Jagdpanzer IV: 

StuG III G:
Panther: 

King Tiger: 

FlaK 36 ATG:

 

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Random Quote

Maybe there are 5,000, maybe 10,000 Nazi bastards in their concrete foxholes before the Third Army. Now if Ike stops holding Monty's hand and gives me some supplies, I'll go through the Siegfried Line like %*$# through a goose.
American General George S. Patton