In North Africa, there was far more desert than there were troops and equipment available to hold the terrain, so the opposing "lines" were often a series of loosely connected outposts, fortified camps, and bands of vehicles that formed defensive rings at the end of the day's fighting.
As a column of tanks and support vehicles moved, it watched for dust clouds that indicated potential enemy columns (just like the clouds their columns produced, thereby warning the enemy of their approach). The speed of the advance was determined by the mission, but the tankers always had to be wary of potential ambushes by enemy anti-tank guns that were able to stay hidden until they fired.
Operation Crusader in November 1941 saw exactly this sort of fluctuating and unpredictable combat environment, where rear-area units sometimes encountered enemy advance parties that were just as suprised as the rear-echelon troops when contact suddenly occured.
Here we have a typical dilemma for just such an Allied force, which did not realize until almost too late that the dust cloud approaching them was made up of German vehicles.
The race is on!
1 Matilda Mk. II
|1 Panzer III
1 SdKfz 251 Halftrack
2 Crusader Mk. II
|2 SdKfz 251 Halftracks|
|Strategy Decks||(remove the "Heroic Leadership" card from the deck).||(remove the two "Dispupt Medical Supplies" cards from the deck).|
|Starting Strategy Cards||3||3|
|Deployment Zone||Division 1: Any of the hexes with an orange border on map 13A.
Division 2: Any of the hexes with an orange border on map 19B.
|Any hexes on maps 21B and 15A.|
The side with the most Victory Points at the end of Round 7 wins.
Hints for players
|Actions per turn||2||2|
|Reinforcements||Status Phase Round 1:
British Division 1 recieves 2 Bren Gun carriers and 3 Bedford OY Transports on any reinforcement hexes on map 13A.
British Division 2 recieves 3 Matilda Mk. II tanks on any hexes along the west on any reinforcement hexes on map 19B.
|Status Phase Round 2:
German Division 1 recieves 3 Panzer III's on any reinforcement hexes on map 19B.
German Division 2 recieves 1 SdKfz 251 Half-Track and 2 Panzer IV's on any reinforcement hexes on map 13A.
|Special Rules||Optional rule: Give each side an equal amount of Squad Bases and Regular Infantry carried in the Bren Gun Carriers and German Half-Track reinforcements. Extend the game lenght to 8 rounds. Note this will slow the play of the game.|
- This one seemed to favor the Germans.
- A gamey strategy for the British would be to place their units on the reinforcement entry spaces, so the Germans wouldn't get any back-up. I think this would break the scenario.
- An unusual race-and-chase scenario. It's very difficult to get any trucks off the board when the defence is determined.
- Race-and-chase element gives lots of fun. It's also quite quick thanks to lack of infantry.