Available for Pre-Order. Autumn 2023
Note: artwork is not final
Ardennes II is a Standard Combat Series reissuing of the award-winning game Ardennes from 1993 using the additional research available in the BCS game Last Blitzkrieg. Like its predecessor, it covers the German Wacht am Rhein offensive in December 1944 against the heretofore “quiet front” of the Ardennes Forest.
Despite heavy losses on both the Western and Eastern Fronts, the German Army attempted to re-invigorate its offensive forces using drafts of the elderly, infirm, and very young. The defending US forces were recovering from the dash across France and using the Ardennes area to give exhausted units a chance to refit and to give their new reinforcements some modest battle-zone experience.
The result went down in history as the Battle of the Bulge.
Overcoming the initial surprise, the US forces put together a series of determined defenses, numerous timely bridge destructions, and the incredible power of their well-supplied artillery to stop the vaunted German Panzer troops nearly dead in their tracks.
Ardennes II covers all this action in turns representing one day of combat and a hex scale of 1 mile per hex. Units are usually reinforced battalions (or smaller). The full campaign game lasts only 16 turns from 16 Dec to 31 Dec 44.
In addition to spotlighting the better OOB and map research first used in Last Blitzkrieg, the game differs from its predecessor by highlighting the unique nature of the artillery on both sides, correcting the original’s “Supply Wagon” supply system, as well as giving units the opportunity to withdraw before an enemy attack. It also cuts back on the amount of chrome rules which the player needed to wade through, and which exaggerated the effects of some marginal forces.
The game continues the SCS tradition of a very clean and easily played Sequence of Play, clear unit interactions, and straight-forward victory determination.
This game is highly recommended for those interested in learning for the first time or teaching the fine hobby of wargaming to beginners.