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Fred the Obscure
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First time running an Overlord Mon, 19 November 2012 19:26
Greetings All,

I have recently joined a local wargaming club, and ran 4 Memoir boards this last week-end. A couple of people had played before, and a bunch of newbies joined in, had about 12 bods playing all in all, and it was much fun.

Now they are asking me to run an Overlord scenario at the next meeting. Which I said OK too.

I have played Overlord one on one before, never with 4 a side - I will take a C-in-C role, which is what the club is hoping for.

Any tips/hints/advice from the more expeianced of you out there on what to do/how to handle it/ what to look out for ?

I thought of doing "Market Garden" as the game to play.
Good choice or not?

Any thoughts/advice much appreciated,
Thank you,

Fred the Obscure,
Durban, South Africa.




      
Quit2
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Re:First time running an Overlord Mon, 19 November 2012 20:12
As a CinC, you sometimes have to make a choice: playing optimally, and sometimes that means one field general gets no cards to play, or making sure every field general gets something to do, even if it is not the best choice strategically.
Since you will be introducing players to the overlord format, I'd advise you to give everyone something to do.

Secondly, I think overlord gets better when you apply the communication rules rather strictly. That means the CiC can only talk to one field general per turn, to give tactical advise. "retreat all your units in cover, because I have no more cards for you". If he says that to one player, he cannotmtell the other one "advance your tanks so they can go in close assault next turn with an armor overrun"
The maybe less experienced players get more fun, because they can take more decisions on their own, and the CiC gets more fun because he needs to be creative to repair how the field genrals messed up.
Note that field generals can talk amongst themselves. Something very useful when it comes to actions around their common border. But of course, they'll know nothing about the cards.

I think that sometimes it works better whenthe least experienced player is the CiC. You don't have to put the best player in that position.

Be carefull about the different parts of the game turn. All players order together, move together, battle together. A player cannot move after another player already has battled. I is especially important around the borders between sections. When the action is far away from the other action ( example, the right field general's right section) I tend to be more lenient. Then it does not matter too much, and players are always eager to battle, and don't like to,wait for their neighbour to decide on some tough decision.

most important advice: have fun!!!
      
sam1812
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Re:First time running an Overlord Tue, 20 November 2012 02:23
For the first time, it's best to use a scenario that has as few special rules as possible. Moyland Wood and Prokhorovka are, IMO, the two best for this.

(Market Garden is really cool, but it has British units, rafts, Tigers, road movement, objectives with special rules, and that special lose/gain-a-card rule).

Beginners can serve as Field Generals, but it's definitely best if they've played one or two standard-size games first. (It can be frustrating for all if someone has trouble getting the basic movement or attack rules right.)

The CinCs don't have to be the strongest or most experienced players in the room, but they definitely should be comfortable with the rules, including the Overlord rules.

Go to the Rules & Goodies page of this website, and print out a couple of copies of the Original Overlord Rules. It's a 6-page PDF that outlines everything clearly. (A couple of minor details changed when they subsequently released the OL expansion, but offhand I think the only changes involved Marines and Commissars.)

Be mindful of the rule about CinCs communicating with their FGs. And have an understanding of that should be done if an inexperienced FG has a question about the rules of the game.

And remember, the object of the game is for everybody to have fun!
      
sam1812
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Re:First time running an Overlord Tue, 20 November 2012 02:25
Oh, also ...

We usually have one FG at a time move, and then one FG at a time battle. It takes a bit longer, but keeps everything sane.

And get colored, plastic markers/pawns/tokens to indicate which units are ordered ... which ones have moved and can battle (and take away the marker after the unit battles).

Dice towers or dice trays can be helpful, too.

[Aktualisiert am: Tue, 20 November 2012 02:25]

      
JFKoski
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Re:First time running an Overlord Tue, 20 November 2012 03:19
Market Garden, although now unclassified has an extra two hexes of board that doesn't show up in the official scenario (just on the battle map).

No matter, I posted the bottom 3 rows under SFTF for those who want them. When I'm ready to play this we'll print out 16 pages or so to make our own battle map.

I agree with Sam, keep it simple. Forests and towns are enough terrain for people to worry about. The other thing I'll recommend is to keep the strategy sessions brief between CinC and FG.

I think there's a rule where you are not supposed to show or tell your cards on hand. I stuck to that last Saturday. For instance I suggested to my FGs to move tanks forward, but didn't tell them I had 3 Armor Assaults! Later my FG asked if he could expect a card next turn. I told him I could give him two this turn, or one each turn, which was about the limit of my indescretion.
      
Sgt Storm
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Re:First time running an Overlord Tue, 20 November 2012 22:05
sam1812 wrote on Mon, 19 November 2012 20:25


And get colored, plastic markers/pawns/tokens to indicate which units are ordered ... which ones have moved and can battle (and take away the marker after the unit battles).


We use the chits that came with the overlord expansion to mark ordered units (when using dice does not suffice as in overlord). Otherwise those chits never get used as we bought the expansion for the cards only.
      
Fred the Obscure
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Re:First time running an Overlord Wed, 21 November 2012 06:55
Greetings All,

Plenty to ponder on here, thank you.

One point for clarification : Quit2 : you mentioned getting everybody to do something every turn. Sounds a good idea to keep everybody interested, especially at this early stage of their careers.

Would this mean playing and pulling 3 cards every turn?
Playing 3 and only pulling 2 obviously is not sustainable.


Ta,

Fred the Obscure,
Durban, South Africa
      
Quit2
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Re:First time running an Overlord Wed, 21 November 2012 09:14
Even without a card, a player can take initiative with a die roll.

Playing 3 cards every turn is not sustainable, but try to avoid the same player being without a card turn after turn.
      
JFKoski
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Re:First time running an Overlord Wed, 21 November 2012 19:57
Quit2 wrote on Wed, 21 November 2012 03:14

Even without a card, a player can take initiative with a die roll.

Playing 3 cards every turn is not sustainable, but try to avoid the same player being without a card turn after turn.


I don't know about that.

If you move against a defender on all 3 sections in the normal game, he'll have plenty of targets no matter what cards he has. So if your Right FG doesn't advance, then your opponent's Left FG will have no one to shoot unless he comes out of his defense.

I'm starting to think that concentration of cards and forces for one FG and his neighbor assisting is the way to go when you are the attacker.

[Aktualisiert am: Wed, 21 November 2012 19:58]

      
Quit2
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Re:First time running an Overlord Wed, 21 November 2012 20:20
jfkoski: i agree. see my first post. but if you introduce new payers to overlord, it might be a bad idea.
what do you prefer? loosing your next game of overlord, but being able to play many many more, or winning your next overlord, but never being able to find enough players to play another overlord game?

I was giving advice on how to play a first overlord game in a new group, not on how to win many overlord games.

[Aktualisiert am: Wed, 21 November 2012 20:23]

      
50th
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Re:First time running an Overlord Sat, 24 November 2012 16:24
I have an overlord help sheet on my user projects page. You can download it here: http://cdn.daysofwonder.com/uploads/userpages/272628/_5568.p df

I began using this because I run a lot of OL games at cons (I ran one on the 10th at Command Con), this chart avoids a lot of confusion on the part of both, GM and those not that familiar with OL.

      
Fred the Obscure
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Re:First time running an Overlord Sun, 02 December 2012 19:45
Greetings All,

Thank you for all the comments/ideas/suggestions.

OK, so I ran my first Overlord "Moyland Wood"

Only had seven players, not eight, so one side had CIC/Field General combined. Also three very inexperianced players.

Overall the feed back was smaller one-on-one games are better.

Two players(two of the more seasoned combatants) actually did a one-on-one Moyland Overlord "rematch" and thoughly enjoyed it.

As CIC I found it a bit slow, maybe having to explain basic rule was a part of it. The command/order thing became blurred. Although at times there were fine examples of one FG doing "his own thing" contrary to previous orders/battle plans given from ealier turns - so that was interesting.

So I'm not keen to try it again just yet. Maybe give the members time to become better aquainted with game play/what a card can actually do before venturing into multiple player senario's.
What would be really great would be able to attened a convention and play with verterans. That's not going to happen in a hurry though. It's an expensive long way from South Africa to the States/Europe

What I do want to do though is try more one-on-one Overlord though.

Thanks again to all those who contributed.
talk anon,

Fred the Obscure,
Durban, South Africa.
      
sam1812
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Re:First time running an Overlord Sun, 02 December 2012 23:20
Hi, Fred --

They asked for an Overlord, they got an Overlord, everybody learned from the experience, and hopefully nobody got injured too badly.

If three of the seven players (i.e., three of the 5 non-CinCs) were still newbies, I can see how that might have slowed things down.

I think you're correct, that when the players are more experienced at regular games, Overlord could be worth trying again. In the mean time, if some folks there are up for one-on-one OL, that certainly will build people's understanding, too.

Keep the faith. Smile

Sam

PS - I occasionally run multi-player online Overlords, on Vassal. I'll probably do one some time in the next 1-2 months. No travel is necessary. Watch this Forum for an announcement.
      
Fred the Obscure
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Re:First time running an Overlord Mon, 03 December 2012 05:46
Greetings Sam1812,

Thanks for your response.

I am aware of Vassal operating system, yet havent ventured in that direction yet. Maybe I need to check it out, try a few games and participate.

Have no fear, I'll keep the Memoir flag flying.
My current dream is to have the first Durban Open tournament, could even be the first in South Africa. I think a few more hours playing time needed first though for the marority of club members. Something to aim for though.

Fred the Obscure,
Durban, South Africa.
      
JFKoski
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Re:First time running an Overlord Wed, 05 December 2012 05:00
I played with some newbies in Overlord a couple months ago. It was a little frustrating when they didn't know how forests and such worked.

I think I'd recommend that Field Generals have at least one game under their belt using the basic terrain (forest, hills, town) and all 3 basic units. Operation Spring sounds good against a newbie, as does Tunisia and Moyland Wood. From the basic set, Arracourt, maybe? If you're doing a beach overlord, then they should have played a beach scenario.
      
Fred the Obscure
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Re:First time running an Overlord Wed, 05 December 2012 06:28
Greetings JF,

Thanks for the response.

Since I'm the main "driver" for Memoir in the local gaming club that I've joined - they are mostly into Napolionics, using a scale that is a strain on the eyes to see - I will encourage standard games for a while yet.

I would dearly like to see/participate in a well run/experianced player Overlord game. Not likely to happen just yet.
Maybe get a "trip to a USA convention" fund going and start stock-piling those Rands and cents. Rolling Eyes

Fred the Obscure,
Durban, South Africa
      
    
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