Wednesday, April 01, 2009

St. Nazaire: Operation Chariot First Impressions

Nick Drinkwater

So, I'm a weak willed person with no spine and have gone and ordered this beast too from the Gamers Armory. For a while, I was in two minds on this one too as a) its pretty pricey and b) Zeb's comments on the rules chrome below had struck a real chord with me too, but then again, its ultimately all about a glorious feat of British naval and martial arms and that was the ulimate push over the edge - how can I resist the lure of that? There were like, three VCs awarded for this alone - brilliant!

Like Zeb though, this was not the no-brainer of most other ASL purchases due to the high costs and esoterica involved - I am hoping this one doesn't just sit on my shelf unplayed, but actually, thinking about that, there is not much in my ASL collection that hasn't at least seen one or two playings from something within it. The Special Forces pack waits to be opened as does VOTG, Tarawa, OVHS and OWT, but most of the other stuff has seen, or is about to see, some kind of use.

Anyhow, looking forward to seeing how Major Newman and Commander Ryder fare in the ASL version of one of favourite and best solitaire games, the old AH Raid on St. Nazaire which is a total classic!

Anyway, I'm back in town - had a brilliant visit to my home county's Regimental Museum, the "Soldiers of Gloucestershire" museum in Gloucester.

The Glorious Glosters have the most battle honours of all the pre-1994 merger regiments of the entire British Army, including Ramilles, Waterloo and Dunkirk, as well as the Imjin River in 1951 where they received a Presidential Unit Citation. They are also unique in British Regiments in being allowed to wear a cap badge on both the front and back of their caps, to remember the feat of arms in Egypt when the regiment's second line turned about face and defeated one of Napoleon's lancer regiments attacking their rear - no time to form square in that one, but they survived all the same. Its a brilliant little museum that follows the two parent regiments, the 28th (North Gloucestershire) and 61st (South Gloucestershire), together with the Royal Gloucestershire Hussar Yeomanry cavalry regiment that fought hard in the western desert amongst other places. Once they had been merged into the Gloucestershire Regiment in 1882, they have an amazing miliary record through both World Wars - the 1st Battalion fought their guts out in the retreat through India in 1942 as part of 17th Indian Division, while the 2nd Battalion was essentially destroyed in Wormhoudt and Cassel on the retreat to Dunkirk.

They even have three original Victoria Crosses in Museum too - if you are ever in the West Country in England, instead of being a sheep and going to see Bath and all the jesters and jugglers entertaining all the other slack-jawed US yokels, take a short trip upto Gloucester to check out this museum - well worth the journey!

Sadly, the unique identity of the regiment was killed off by the Tory Govt and it was amalgamated with the Berkshire and Wiltshire Regiments in 1994; the current Labour Govt did not change this policy and forced more mergers with the Devonshires and Dorsets and Light Infantry - together, they are now all component parts of The Rifles Regiment now which is serving proudly in Afghanistan as I write.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

The Saint Nazaire Pack is certainly heavy on New rules but it's not all about Saint Nazaire and you also get 7 other places set scenarios which don't need all the rules but only a few (from S SWANN). Given for something like beetween 25 to 30 playing hours. Eventually it's pushing me to make the effort to learn the LC Rules which I didn't do untill now, deeming there was not enough scenarios (I own TARAWA and Gavatu Tanambogo, but it's too crowded and nightmarish for my taste) to pay back the time investment. I think it's no more the case. I have started to write something for helping to start with LC in the two Basic LC scenarios I know, for letting this time investment be shared with others. Light on rules. FT 98 And Then They Landed then A55 The Cat has jumped. Then I'll play FT109 Hitler's Lost Iron and FT115 Nearly Entombed from the SN Pack. Thank you for Banzaï and this Pipeline. Jérôme REY