Alternative Titles/Edition History:
1st Edition, 2006; 2nd Edition, 2007
Break Contact (2006)
Country of Origin:
1st Edition: 7 scenarios
2nd Edition: As above, but different layout and with some changesCommentary:
Break Contact came onto the ASL scene like found money: unlooked for and unexpected, but appreciated. However, like found money, many may consider it hard to find. It is basically only available from one source, the Australian games e-tailer Warchest.
It turns out that “Break Contact” is Straylian for “tournament sized scenarios,” because that is what is in this small scenario pack (billed as an “Aussie Tournament Pack”): a baker’s half dozen of smallish scenarios, all of which follow the exploits of various Australians in Crete, Syria, New Guinea and Bougainville. There is no doubting the size here; these scenarios hearken back to the style of the very first issue of Schwerpunkt: 8.5 squads vs. 5 squads, 11 squads vs. 7.5 squads, 8.5 squads vs. 6.5 squads, 6 squads vs. 1.5 squads, 9.5 squads vs. 7 squads, 9 squads vs. 6 squads, and the “monster” scenario featuring 15 squads vs. 8 squads, with a few odd vehicles thrown in here and there.
Scenario situations include:
- BC1 Short Sharp Shock. Syria 1941 (British vs. Vichy French)
- BC2 Put to the Sword. Bougainville 1945 (Australians vs. Japanese)
- BC3 42nd Street. Crete 1941 (Australian vs. German)
- BC4 Tin Cans, Tin Hats. Syria 1941 (Australians vs. Vichy French)
- BC5 Storming the Ampitheatre. Bougainville 1945 (Australians vs. Japanese)
- BC6 Walkabout. Bougainvlle 1945 (Australians vs. Japanese)
- BC7 Brigade Hill. New Guinea 1942 (Australians vs. Japanese)
The scenarios are reasonably attractive, although they have no photograph or drawing on them, as is customary. One interesting touch is that SSR’s are color coded (so terrain notes have a green stripe next to them, artillery related SSRs have a blue stripe next to them, etc.). One of the scenarios is a night scenario, one scenarios has OBA and a Bombardment, one scenario has booby traps, one scenario lets one side voluntarily go berserk, and one scenario features bulldozers.
Some of the scenarios are a little quirky. For example, one of them has an SSR that says hedges do not exist, but uses an orchard overlay to replace an orchard surrounded by a hedge–exactly the same effect either way, with the only likely result that the player will be confused and wonder if an open ground overlay was what was really intended.
In 2007, Break Contact created a slightly revised version of the scenario pack. The new version has the same scenarios, but a completely new layout. The new layout–which includes original counter artwork–is superior to the original layout. In addition, some changes have been made to some of the scenarios. However, this 2nd edition was not produced for sale but only in very limited quantities for tournament prizes, etc.
Several of the scenarios turned out to be pretty decent, including BC2 (Put to the Sword) and BC3 (42nd Street). The best scenario in the pack, BC7 (Brigade Hill), is a great tournament scenario. It was later reprinted as an ASL Journal scenario (J116), where it got a lot more play than in its Break Contact version (though the two are essentially identical).
The pack is worth getting, if you can find it.