Tactics, tricks, combinations.

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    Well, Hello there.
    I propose to discuss or suggest tactics, tricks and combinations that can bring good results, or at least negate the strengths of the opponent. I propose to write even if they seem obvious to you.

    for example, playing for the Americans on small formats, I realized that my air observer is very effective, after a few games, both of my opponents (we have 2 players for IJA) began to play with small units, the loss of which will not be significant for the army.
    the result is that my air observer (75 points) for the entire game will kill only 2-4 soldiers (20-40 points). Yes, you say that in addition to 2-4 corpses my planes will bring some pin markers, but if you’ve played vs. the IJA, then you will realize how little pin markers mean for IJA troops…

    playing for the Germans, I started using a combination of “Tiger fear” and “Paranoia”.
    on small formats, almost all units of the enemy, and on big formats (if I have 2 tanks), all units of the opponent each turn make the order test on -1 morale, and in the case of Fubar are almost always shooting at their soldiers.
    of the minuses – the minimum cost of such tactics 330 points excluding officers and a minimum of 1 squad of infantry (at least another + 90 points).


    If you want to win more consistently, the single most important thing to keep in mind is what the objective is. Most games of Bolt Action are played around an objective. Either getting a squad somewhere, or claiming objective markers. You win the game by completing those objectives more efficiently than your opponent did.

    Every decision you make in the game should put you a step closer to accomplishing those objectives. Its really easy to get drawn into firefights, and trying to outmaneuver your opponent for the sake of outmaneuvering him. But all of that is for naught if you don’t end up claiming the objectives.

    If your objective is to get squads off the table. Get squads off the table ASAP. If your objective is to claim objective markers. Try to get to them before your opponent and force him to dig you out. If your opponent has control of an objective marker focus on getting assault squads, flamers, HE and other assets into position to dig him out.

    On the same token, if one of your flanks is collapsing, but that flank is not relevant to your plan to win the game… let it collapse and do not divert squads that can potentially score you victory points.

    Finally, when something unexpected happens and your opponent flukes a crucial kill on your lines that puts you on the back foot. Don’t give up. Many players give up mentally when things start going wrong and as a result they lose winnable games. Take a deep breath, look at the table, and come up with an alternate plan to score victory points. Never forget the mission objective, and make sure you are working on accomplishing it from the word go. Many player’s biggest mistake is not even thinking about the objectives until halfway through the game.

    • This reply was modified 4 years, 10 months ago by akaean.

    Good words from akaean.

    Having a good plan to start with and knowing when it’s falling apart or when to press on is the key.

    Remember there is no such thing as a dead cert and never pass up an opportunity. The best games I’ve had are where I’ve taken chances and been bold. Push for that assault, press home the attack, commit to a plan.

    Sometimes it fails but it’s a worthy failure. You can’t control the dice, accept them and move on to plan B,C,D…etc.

    I like to have backup and a solid line of advance. My commandos do assault in depth: they don’t hold back and leapfrog 4 units. Advance one and fire then run the next through it. The lead unit will take fire but hopefully protect the following units. Plus that unit will soon be relieved by the unit behind. Use LOS blocking terrain to limit the fire they take and flanking to get healthy units in to support. This is a tactical plan and it’s served me well. It has to fit into the AT plan (I only have a PIAT and mortar I need to get hit on tanks or I have to ignore them) and the strategic objective.


    Yes, of course, some players are addicted to the pursuit of frags and lose sight of the mission objectives. this is useful advice, if it is to learn, bring as minimum a couple of wins.

    And Yes, sometimes the enemy can not be destroyed, sometimes it will be right to ignore it, and not waste time on useless attempts to destroy it and miss the opportunity to win.

    Greg S

    Activate mortars and indirect arty after your target has moved and before they move the following turn. A stationary target such as artillery, a sniper team or a squad with lots of pins is a good mortar target.

    If you plan to assault a big squad, or even a squad with equal numbers to your assaulters, try and reduce the numbers of the enemy with shooting from other units first.

    If you have a vehicle with several weapons, spread the love. If you shoot at one squad you’ll only add one pin. If you fire multiple targets you might get multiple pins.

    Use your officers. Move them up to units with lots of pins before you try and activate them. Use ‘snap to action’ to activate several units.

    A 1st Lieutenant is much better than a 2nd. For only 25 points you gain an extra dice for snap to action and +2 leadership, which can make all the difference.


    For air/arty observers, have them armed with rifles so that they can take shots from a relatively safe location and maybe drop a pin the rest of the time rather than being a useless ‘dead’ dice after they used up their barrage or air strike. For the price they cost ‘might as well give them something more decent than a pistol.

    Germans and co. could always use assault rifles instead; Brits got a free arty observer, and most metal models in HQ kits are armed with rifles already, saving you the trouble of making one.

    invisible officer

    In game terms that is a good suggestion.

    But in real world just foolish. To use a highly trained FO as rifleman is no good idea.

    It happened, my own father was one with Heer. In Kessel of Bobruisk fight he was badly wounded in “Infanteristischem Einsatz” and became POW. He fought with a pistol, helping an artillery LMG gunner as No. 2. (Each battery had a LMG)

    And why was he used as infantry? His artillery Abteilung had no amo left. The guns blown up, gunners fighting as infantry in breakout, those not wounded or kia succeeded. His wireless operator had a pistol too. For weight reasons.

    Sturmgewehre had been so rare that a FO was hardly able to get one. An officer in a non infantry unit needed very good connections to get one. (And the Special Magazine loader and replacement amo)

    If you have a look into old Soldbücher artillery officers had there a pistol with serial number (Often private owned) and rarely a smg. To carry a weapon not officially written into was a way to Strafbat. ……..

    Greg S

    British officers (or artillery observers) in teams of three with rifles can get 4 AD with rapid fire national rule. That’s not a bad little unit to be adding pins to the enemy at a distance.


    invisible officer, My friend, you are certainly right, and in the Soviet army forbade officers who are not related to the linear infantry companies to participate in combat, artillerymans (except batteries 45mm guns, they fought in the same line with the infantry), not only officers, but also tank crew (even just tractor drivers were obliged to send to the rear of the tank courses) were obliged to send to the rear, and not give them to die as infantry. And in our time, our officers are taught that their weapons are a map and a pencil, not a gun.
    But we are talking about game terms, not the realities.

    sorry for my English.


    The problem with having a 3 men team that you’re loosing on the +1 to hit for small team, I think most go with 2 men teams for the ‘defensive’ bonus. I run a 1st Lt+man with rifles, solo arty observer the +2 bonus saved my bacon once or twice.

    Greg S

    I too generally run with a two-man arty team and officers. But three men in a Bren carrier, with rifles, can be a potent little unit.

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