Grey Wolf has arrived!
After a long waiting have got hold of the Grey Wolf book. This is the latest compilation for East front, Late war for Flames of War. Battle front have collected all the small separate books on different front sections and added the released PDF´s to this book. It is one massive book of 265 full colour hardbound book it weighs down your already heavy figure bag.
There is a few changes in the points and the abilities. First thing all MG teams have become cheaper which is very welcome. How you bye and build fortifications have changed allot, it reminds to Hell-fire and Back system. Instead of buying separate trenches etc. do you buy a strong point with nests, bunkers and trenches you if you defences do you minimum need to spend 110p which is two strong points. When you deploy you strong points you mark a centre point all of the defences and the attached platoon needs to be with in 30cm and not closer then 15cm of any other strong point defences or from the table edges. This will cause gaps in the defences which I think will give a more fluid game. I have some worries how missions like cauldron will be handled it will be hard to deploy to strong points with the 80cm diameter circle you have for deployment. I think this new rules is for cleaning up the different defences rules and have one common ground for all periods and I think we will see this changes in Flames of War V3 which will be released in the spring.
Next big changes regarding defences are the introduction of Booby traps which have the same rules as in the Vietnam rules. This is one major thing for the infantry because it can halt the Russian infantry advance completely. There is a few rules for the booby trap but shortly what you do is place a small base during your ambush some where in your deployment zone or deadman´s land. It can be placed under a enemy team if so wish. Next turn when your opponent want to cross or move over a booby trap do he need to first role a successful moral and then a successful skill not to be hit and role a save. If one team was hit during his movement will the hole platoon be pinned down after the movement phase is completed. And as we all know a pinned down platoon can not assault. So the Germans win one more round if they are lucky. The Booby trap cost 10points each and is a one time use, in most defensive rooster can you have a maximum of 16 booby traps. I like the new traps but it can cause problem because you can snipe our trap on to commanding teams, for a German player is this not a problem but for a Russian could it cause major problems. I think that we will see allot more of higher command teams so you have in practise to Company commanders and that your commander will not join the assault all the time because he will be a target. I will have to play it a few times to get a opinion about it.
There is off course more big changes. They have change the designated tank riders to tank escorts. You can still tank ride if you want to but the Begliet teams are now bought as separate infantry platoon or as tank escorts. The rules around tank escort is completely changed in short they belong to the tank they can never jump of and they are only killed when the tank is killed. They fight as a separate team in assault and you can chose to fight with the tank escort only if you wish then the tank do not need to role for bog check. This new rules will be allot easier and more streamlined I think. I guess that it is also closer to the new rules that will be released.
And finally the last big change is that they give breakthrough gun to all weapons that are over 10cm in width. I am not 100% confident about this change because it makes it allot harder for infantry to survive, but this have to be game tested. I think Battle front have thought it through and tried to balance it.
So this is the Grey Wolf in general. I think it is a beautiful book and the print and binding is very good. There is changes all over the book and I have only taken up the big changes. For the Russians are there more changes I do not own the book so I will not speak about there changes. I am pleased with the new rules it will change the game play a bit and it will take a few games to get use to it. There will be a big (swedish standards) east front tournament where we are allowed to use the new books + the old ones. So it will be interesting to see the result. Will the new lists be more power full then the old ones? Have Battle front introduced a point inflation to the game as other major game companies?