Multi-Man Publishing (2021)
Country of Origin:
1 two-sided 11" x 16" unmounted geoboard (14a/b), 3 scenarios on cardstock.
Winter Offensive Bonus Pack #12 is a mini-scenario/map pack from MMP designed for a tournament that never occurred. The 2021 Winter Offensive ASL tournament was cancelled due to inclement covid-19, along with other ASL tournaments around the world. For a dozen years now, MMP has released a version of this little pack at the tournament, with the profits designed to go to charity (for some years now, that charity as been the WWII Foundation). That second part is still true, but this time the pack was released only online and through retailers. Hopefully the 2022 Winter Offensive ASL tournament will once again bring people together in person.
The pack contains one new geoboard and three scenarios, with (as per usual) one of the scenarios being printed on the reverse of the product’s (attractive) cover.
The geoboard, 14a, is a 10″ by 16″ geoboard that is dominated by largish grainfields, with an odd, largish x-shaped woods mass taking up the center of the map (a stream paralleling one of the axes of the x). A cluster of buildings to the side constitute a tiny crossroads hamlet. It’s mostly YAPB (yet another pastoral board) but is unobjectionable if unexciting. Two of the scenarios take place solely on this board, while the third also requires board 11b.
Three three scenarios are all late-war West Front actions:
- WO36 (Dompaire Destruction) is a Free French scenario set in France in September 1944 featuring the 2nd French Armored Division. This is a heavy metal armored scenario that is only 4.5 turns long, so the action must be fast and furious. The Germans are on the move with two forces, one consisting of 9 crappy squads, an AA truck, and 4 Panthers and the other consisting of 8 crappy squads, 4 half-tracks, 2 Pz IVs, and 2 StuGs. German tank crews are inexperienced, though. They have to exit tanks and get CVP and building VP in a complex 9-line-long set of VC. The French–which you can pull out your new Free French counters for, except for the AFVs–have 15 1st-line squads and 8 Shermans and tank destoyers, as well as a 57mm AT-gun. They also get Air Support for most of the scenario.
- WO37 (The Vital Hours) is an Arnhem-related scenario in the Netherlands featuring British parachutists (but no airdrop) vs. Germans. In this small scenario, the British win through exist VP and controlling buildings alongside a road. Their 2nd-line German opponents do have a 20mm AA gun and get another one, truck-mounted, as a reinforcement.
- WO38 (Three Bars of Chocolate) features an American attack in Germany in November 1944; the Americans win by controlling a cluster of buildings. They have 14 squads (4 of which enter as reinforcements mid-game), assisted by 4 Shermans that also enter as reinforcements. The paltry German force of 3.5 crappy squads (reinforced mid-game by 3.5 more crappy squads) is assisted by two Tigers that also enter mid-game (but which have to leave fairly soon). An interesting, if lengthy, SSR has the German player place 5 Prep Fire, 5 First Fire and 20 other counters in a cup. When an American unit spends MF/MP in a location devoid of Residual Fire, the German player may draw a counter from the cup–if it is a Prep Fire counter drawn, a 2-FP attack occurs; if FIrst Fire, a 1-FP attack occurs. Other counters have no effect. Counters are not re-used. This rule lasts until one of several conditions are met. To help the Americans survive, they are fanatic while this rule is in effect.
There’s no reason not to purchase this, since it contains an official geoboard, and the scenarios generally look interesting.