This one looks simple, but it is quite a challenge to play.
The board is much wider than it is deep. In the centre is a crossroads,
from here, the two crossing roads form an X in the middle of the board.
Each long edge therefore has two roads going off it, with some distance
between these points and the corners of the board. The roads are clear
apart from one burned-out armoured vehicle smack bang on the crossroads,
which blocks LOS along both roads. Around the crossroads is a dense
village. The rest of the board has a LOT of cover on it - there is not
much open ground at all.
A couple of major buildings in the village are half-way between
hardpoints and ordinary buildings (the models I used were of large stone
buildings). Firing at these involves throwing one extra die and ignoring
the highest result of all the dice. For example, rifles firing at a building
would normally roll 2 dice. Instead, when firing at these buildings, they
roll three dice, and get 5, 5, 3. One five, being one of the highest numbers,
is ignored, so a pin, not a suppress, is the result. The probability of a
suppress by this method is about half-way between the stats. for a hardpoint
(6s needed), and a normal building. This gives the scenario some strategic
positions which are not so strong as to threaten to dominate the
scenario, but strong enough to be of interest.
The objective is either to defeat the enemy, or to take and hold the
majority of the buildings in the village for a certain length of time, perhaps
five initiatives. To win, a player must occupy buildings of at least three
of the four sections of village. One could use the clock system in
Hit the Dirt, and say that the side in control of the village when
darkness falls, wins. Each time one side ends its initiative, a die is rolled
to see how much time has passed, and the clock is advanced some amount (like
half an hour) if the die roll comes up greater than a certain number. For example,
the game could start at noon, and darkness could fall at 2200 hours, and the clock
could advance half an hour each time one player rolls 3+. Obviously, if one side
gets annihilated, the game ends in a victory to the annihilators.
One side has two companies of veterans, and one stand in three of infantry
has HEAT weapons. The other side has three companies of infantry
regulars, and all the infantry stands have HEAT weapons. This side also has more
machine guns, and some MG-armed light vehicles (I used motorcycles with
sidecars and the like). Each company has one 3" or 81mm mortar.
The side with fewer infantry has MANY more tanks, I used Churchills,
Stuarts and Daimler ACs, also a 6-pounder, a 17-pounder plus towing
vehicles. The other side has far less armour (I used one Panther, one
222, and one StuG III).
In playtest, it worked well. No one wanted to go all-out to take the village, fearing
losing the flanks. At the start of the game we deployed one vehicle/platoon at a time along the
broad edges, and where along the breadth of the table to put these was a
major decision, given the central objective, and the proportions and dense
terrain of the board. The tanks did not dominate - they were too scared
to go on the roads, and too scared to advance without confident infantry
support, which was unlikely to exist given the board. The anti-tank guns
couldn't come forward without risking being seen by opposing FOs and
mortared to oblivion. Infantry did most of the work, with the tanks
standing by most of the time as an atmospheric menace threatening total
destruction to the loser - they wouldn't be the beginning of the end, but
they would be the end of the loser's force.
It is difficult to suggest tactics. Watch where you opponent masses his forces.
He might mass on either flank or in the middle. If he masses in the middle and
you don't, then he will probably take the village before you can stop him. If
he masses on one flank, then you might mass to prevent his sweeping around, or
perhaps you might put a small holding force on that flank, while hoping to surround
the village from the other flank.
Another Crossfire enthusiast has tried this scenario, and written up his experiences with it on his website: Ian Hayward's version.