Raid on St. Nazair
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This is a great game for the solitaire gaming fan. I've owned this game for years and I keep going back to it. It has a great balance of playability, relatively easy-to-learn rules, suspense, and depth.
Rather than reiterate the previous review, which accurately portrays the game's major weakness, I'd just like to add that this weakness can be overcome by doing a bit of research on the raid and starting the game at the point at which the Campbelltown strikes the southern caisson. This will shorten the game, remove much of the boredom of the approach, and remove the possibility of the Campbelltown being sunk, thus allowing the player a better chance of a win.
RAID ON ST. NAZAIR is a solitaire game that recreates the 1942 invasion of the French port by British commandoes. Their objective was to destroy most of the docking and repair facilities. Thus keeping the German battleship Tirpitz from using the port and preventing another 'Bismark' style raid on Allied convoys in the Atlantic.
The game is broken down into two segments:
1) The approach of the British fleet carrying the commandoes. The fleet consisting of small boats and the old destroyer Campbelltown. They engage the german shore batteries and try to land their forces.
2) Once landed, the commandoes then scatter to their pre-designated targets (Locking Gates, Power Station, bridges, etc.) and attempt to destroy them. Afterwards, the survivors try to escape, either by returning what's left of the fleet or by going inland.
The first part of the game can be rather tedious as the boats approach the shoreline. The amount of die-rolling that decides which boat is hit, how bad is the damage, are the commandoes affected, did one of their demo charges go off? and on and on....
However, once they all land the interest level picks up as you try to blow up as many facilities as you can. The German forces that try to stop you range from pitiful to SS level. Each facility is worth a certain amount of points. Add this to the points earned when crew/commandoes make it back to England and whatever survivors escape on land. If the total reaches 70, you win.
For a solitaire game, this is one of the best ones I've played. And I have played it almost 50 times. With some games going right down to the wire. However, the naval phase of the game can be real tedious with all that die-rolling. And your chance of winning depends on what's left of your commando forces after they land. If the Campbelltown sinks, you better just go back to port and restart the game.
All in all, if you're a wargamer with an interest in WW2 (who isn't?) who doesn't mind a lotta die rolling and has some time on his hands. This game is well worth it.