I’ve been putting together British and Soviet forces for early 1980s Cold War Gone Hot (CWGH) for a while, and last night finally got a chance to get them on a table. Fred and I thought it would be good to try and give Force on Force (FoF) a crack at conventional warfare rather than the usual asymmetric approach (i.e. Brits/Sovs/Americans versus insurgents). I think FoF works really well for modelling the post-2001 Coalition versus insurgents scenarios. I was curious about its handling of more balanced or complex forces.
We tried to keep it fairly simple, with two mechanised infantry platoons and two recce vehicles for each side. The setting was the outskirts of a fictional German village, with a bridge and shopping centre as the objective points.
I’d like to say had an exciting and or interesting game to report, but the truth is that after about four turns we were both thoroughly disillusioned and abandoned the game. I’ve always felt that FoF has great potential, but is let down by the feeling of bolted on complexity and haphazard layout/structure of the Osprey rulebook. I’ve realised that I think that FoF suffers from having been conceived as an asymmetric game (at which, as stated, I think it works very well) but was mutated into a more ambitious attempt to make it a more all- encompassing set of modern warfare rules. Sadly I don’t feel it works. Of course, your mileage may vary.
Now, to be fair, if we both knew the rules in much greater detail, things might have gone better. But I don’t think it would offset the problems we both felt hindered our game. Ultimately something like Chain of Command or the Battlegroup system may be better for us – hopefully sooner or later modern versions of these rules will appear. In the meantime there is, as far as I’m concerned, a gap in the market for a decent set of modern rules that more effectively balances complexity, detail and playability at platoon and larger sized games.
Figures and terrain were mosly from my collection. The BAOR infantry are a mix of Britannia, Liberation and Elheim miniatures; the Soviets from Liberation, Elheim, PLatoon 20 (yuck) and Zvezda. Vehicles are from S&S Models, S-Model and Britannia.