Tom D came over on Saturday and I ran a small Arc of Fire scenario to introduce him to the rules in preparation for the Crisis Point game in April.
The scenario was a simple one. It's 1918 and a small Turkish force (four-man HQ, 15-man rifle section, LMG team, and five-man "bomber" team) have to capture an Andreivian village. The village is held by a small Andreivian army team and, unbeknown to the Turks, a temporarily immobilised Renault FT light tank.
The above pic shows the table from the southern (Turkish) edge. A brick-built warehouse dominates this side of the village but it has only two windows on the south side so it's not readily defensible. Tom elected to advance to the right of the road, across the recently harvested wheat field and either side of the small copse of trees.
Pretty soon the Turks came under ineffective rifle fire from the back of the warehouse. The Turks returned fire and were sure they'd achieved some solid hits. In fact the first fusillade wounded the Andreivian forces commander, effectively ending his involvement in the fight. The second round of firing from the Turks killed his second in command outright and the Andreivian HQ unit ceased to exist as a fighting unit!
As the Turks closed in on the village I knew that I'd have to move the only remaining Andreivian infantry unit (a six-man rifle section) from the graveyard to the central square if I was to buy time for the tank driver to repair the engine.
The tank driver was reasonably lucky with his TAC rolls. As the Turks approached the village square they heard an internal combustion engine splutter into life (I was going to say roar into life but come on guys, this is only a Renault FT) and heard the grinding of caterpillar tracks.
The FT managed to get off a shot from its 37mm Puteau cannon. 37mm HE is not very powerful and the commander (the FT has a two-man crew) was firing while the tank was moving. Even with a densely packed infantry target the shot was ineffective. It would prove to be the tank's only shot of the game!
As the tank commander tried desperately to reload, a firefight developed across the village square. The Andreivian infantry scrambled to take what cover they could but they were severely out-numbered and once the Turkish LMG came around onto their flank, their days were numbered.
It came down to race to see if the Andreivian tank could extricate itself from this unsuitable tactical situation before the Turkish bomber team could get close enough to use their grenades against it.
In the end a single Turkish bomber launched two heroic close assaults on the tank but he was unable to prevent it wheezing and clanking its was off along the northern road towards safety.
So that was Tom's first AoF game. The Turks had seized the village to a win for them. The Andreivians had also met their aim of extracting the tank to safety but the loss of both commander and sergeant in the first few moments of the action took the shine off this achievement.
A fun game. We got done in a leisurely couple of hours and AoF again showed that new players can pick it up within a very short time.