For those that may not have seen the first few posts, in this new feature, we have asked the designer of All Bridges Burning: Red Revolt and White Guard in Finland, 1917-1918 from GMT Games VPJ Arponen, to provide us with text of some of the proposed Event Cards and also to give a short summary of the historical background as well as their use in the game. We will plan to post these Spoilers every 7-10 days over the next few months, or even longer if Vez is up for it. We are very grateful for Vez and his willingness to do this for us and for our readers. Thank you for your hard work Vez!
In our 4th Event Card Spoiler post regarding All Bridges Burning, we take a look at card #27 The Reds Launch a Major Offensive. Please keep in mind that the artwork and layout of these cards is not yet finalized and is only for playtest purposes at this point. Also, as the game is still in development, card details may still change prior to publication.
27. The Reds Launch a Major Offensive
In the first three card spoiler posts we’ve looked at selected cards from Phase I of All Bridges Burning. In the next three entries we’ll do the same for selected cards from Phase II.
As the first card, I’ve selected The Reds Major Offensive, a nice card for the Reds to stage a bit of a military blowback against the Senate. To be sure, going on extensive military expeditions is a little out of character for the Reds in All Bridges Burning – something that many a Reds player will undoubtedly be forgetting in the face of enemy onslaught. Yet, an event like this provides an opportunity to catch the sharpest edge of the Senate army unawares. With a little bit of die roll luck the Reds may cause some significant damage in the White Senate army and buy themselves more time for other activities more conducive to fulfilling their victory conditions.
The historical events depicted in the card concern the major offensive launched by the Reds in February 1918, a few weeks into the Finnish Civil War. The offensive was launched along the entire front line, but some of the specific objectives included the attempt to push the Senate forces out of the strategically important railway juncture at Haapamäki, some 100 kilometers or 60 miles North of the Reds stronghold town of Tampere. The offensive, however, was not successful. A second offensive was planned for March, but by that time the initiative had shifted and the Senate forces were advancing towards Tampere (it eventually fell to the Senate forces in early April).
The attack mechanics in All Bridges Burning simulate fighting on a fairly abstract level. First an Attack Strength is determined by taking into account an array of positive and negative modifiers. The initial value is zero. The present event card, for example, gives a free +2 modifier to the Attack Strength. In addition, among others, the presence of capabilities (cannons, armored trains, etc.) among the defenders and/or the attackers yield further positive or negative modifiers. The attacker also has the opportunity to spend additional resources to beef up the Attack Strength. Finally, the attacker rolls 1d6 and compares it to the Attack Strength. If the roll is smaller or equal to the Strength, the attack succeeds and removes the die roll value’s worth of enemies. All in all, two things are key to a successful attack: ensure a high Attack Strength and roll as high as you can – but beware, a six is an auto-fail!
In the top part of the card, there is the German Action Phase text. This means, on each card with that text, the non-player German power will be conducting an action. A half of the 1918 events in All Bridges Burning contain that text.
Next card up in the series will be #43 Rough Justice.
You can also catch up on the series by following these links:
#3 November Revolution in Russia
#9 Declaration of Finnish Independence
If you are interested in All Bridges Burning: Red Revolt and White Guard in Finland, 1917-1918, you can pre-order a copy at the following link: https://www.gmtgames.com/p-675-all-bridges-burning-red-revolt-and-white-guard-in-finland-1917-1918.aspx
Also, check out our interview with the designer VPJ Arponen to get better insight into the game.