Wounds Unlimited and Steve Jackson Games are proud to announce the winner of the Ogre Scenario Design Contest: "Hammer & Anvil." Look for this scenario, and others, in Ogre Scenario Book One, available in December!
Hammer & Anvil
A Scenario for the Classic OGRE Map
by Alvin Helms(Click here for the accompanying map to this scenario!)
This scenario might also be called "Kill the Ogre," for it is the counterpoint to the traditional "Kill the Command Post" scenario. It depicts an attempt by mixed forces to ambush and destroy an Ogre by making use of the Ogre's well-known appetite for Command Posts.
The scenario derives its name from a classic military maneuver, in which an advancing enemy is allowed to pass a screen of concealed forces, then is confronted with a main force. The enemy's retreat is cut off by the emergence of the concealed forces, and it may, with luck, be crushed between the two.
"Hammer & Anvil" may be played with nothing more than the units and rules available in Deluxe OGRE and Deluxe G.E.V.
1.0 Basic Scenario Setup
In the "Hammer & Anvil" scenario, the long map edges (01** and 15**) are impassable to anything but Infantry. The map might therefore represent a pass through a steep-walled valley, with the only route of escape to the south (**22), through the clear area. The northern edge (**01) only leads deeper into enemy territory.
The ambushing forces consist of:
- 1 Command Post (decoy)
- 12 Infantry squads
- 16 Armor Units (no stationary Howitzers)
The target is a lone Ogre Mk III.
1.1 Initial Placement of Forces
The specific placement of units is very important in the "Hammer & Anvil" scenario, and the first turn consists only of placement, not movement (see 5.0 Strategy).
1.11 Setting the Bait
The ambushing player begins by placing his Command Post anywhere within the area shaded blue in the map illustration. He must then select one of his Armor Units (of any type) and place it anywhere within the same area. This ends his placement turn, and these are the only units visible to the Ogre before his placement.
1.12 Responding to the Bait
The Ogre's player must now place his Ogre anywhere within the diamond of hexes shaded red in the map illustration. He may then fire any or all of its weapons at either or both of the targets visible to him, provided they are in range.
1.2 Springing the Trap
After the Ogre has fired, the rest of the ambushing player's other forces come out of concealment by entering along the map edges, with the following constraints:
At least one third of the ambusher's Armor must enter through the northern edges of the map (hexes 0102 through 0107, hexes 1502 through 1507, and any hex in the **01 or **02 range).
All remaining Armor must be divided equally between the southeast and southwest edges (hexes 0109 through 0122 and hexes 1509 through 1522).
NOTE: The Victory Point value of any unit(s) used as Bait is not included in the total of the forces when dividing between northern and southern armor groups.
All Infantry must enter with the southern Armor, along the SE and SW edges of the map.
None of the ambusher's units may enter through the southern edge of the map. (The available entry hexes are colored yellow in the map illustration.)
No more than one Armor unit (or three Infantry squads, grouped into a platoon) may enter through each hex. If stacking is permitted, it may only be done after entering the map.
NOTE: These units are executing movement, coming from hiding places just beyond the edges of the map. Therefore, a Heavy Tank entering at hex 0112 could move as far as 0311 in this turn.
Once all the ambusher's units have finished their movement (including the Bait unit, if it survived), the ambusher may attack with any units in range of the Ogre. GEVs may then take their second movement phase.
Thereafter, it is the Ogre player's turn, and all play proceeds normally.
2.0 Objectives and Victory Conditions
The game ends when the Ogre is destroyed or when the Ogre exits the map -- which he may do along its southern edge only, going back the way he came.
The ambusher's objective is to destroy the Ogre with a minimum of casualties. For the Ogre, the objective is to escape -- and to destroy as many of its attackers as possible. All normal Victory Points apply (2 per Infantry Squad, 6 per Armor Unit, etc.), and are used to calculate the following Victory Conditions:
Ogre destroyed and 60% or more of the ambusher's forces survive:
Complete Ambush Victory
Ogre destroyed and 40% or more of the ambusher's forces survive:
Ogre destroyed and 20% or more of the ambusher's forces survive:
Marginal Ambush Victory
Ogre destroyed but less than 20% of ambusher's forces survive:
Ogre escapes but destroys less than 25% of ambusher's forces:
Ogre escapes and destroys at least 25% of ambusher's forces:
Marginal Ogre Victory
Ogre escapes and destroys at least 50% of ambusher's forces:
Ogre escapes and destroys at least 75% of ambusher's forces:
Complete Ogre Victory
2.1 Special Victory Rule: Rewarding Spite
If the Ogre destroys the Command Post decoy, he is awarded the value of two Armor Units (12 Victory Points). This is added to the ambusher's V.P. total when calculating the percentage destroyed by the Ogre, but it is not included in calculating the ambusher's survival total. The bonus may therefore break a Draw or upgrade an Ogre Victory, but will not otherwise affect the outcome.
2.2 What If . . . ?
It is not likely, but it is possible for the Ogre to become immobilized, yet destroy all its attackers. Should this happen, consider it a Draw -- unless the Ogre also destroyed the Command Post decoy, in which case it is a Marginal Ogre Victory.
3.0 Advanced Scenario
Play is identical to the Basic Scenario, except:
The ambusher's forces consist of:
- 1 Command Post (decoy)
- 18 Infantry squads
- 24 Armor Units (no stationary Howitzers)
The target is a lone Ogre Mk V.
4.0 Optional Rules
These variations will add some spice to "Hammer & Anvil."
4.1 The Secret Weapon
The ambusher may exchange two of his Armor Units for a Howitzer, which his combat engineers have concealed within one of the map's 17 craters. He must choose the crater during his Initial Placement, but its position is not revealed until the trap is sprung (see 1.2). Once revealed, the Howitzer fires along with the ambusher's other units.
The concealed Howitzer derives some protection from the crater: Because it is inside a crater, it may not be overrun, and the shelter gives it a Defense rating of 2, rather than the usual 1.
NOTE: To avoid mistrust between players, the ambusher should record the Howitzer's location beforehand, by writing the hex's number on a slip of paper. The slip should be left in plain sight, face down or folded, and should not be touched by either player until after the Ogre has been placed.
4.11 Waiting for the Shot
If the Ogre is not within range of the Howitzer at the end of the Initial Placement, the ambusher need not reveal it yet. It may remain concealed until the Ogre comes within its range, and be revealed during the ambusher's movement phase.
4.12 The TOP SECRET Weapon
The ambusher may instead exchange FOUR Armor Units for an Emplaced Howitzer with Point Defense (Attack 6, Range 6 hexes/12", Defense 5 + 1 for the crater).
4.2 More Bait for the Hook
The ambusher may choose to roll a die to determine the number of "bait" units (see 1.11) that were necessary to lure the Ogre in. Regardless of the number, all of the "bait" units must be placed in the northern end of the map (along the **07 line of hexes or above). As in the standard rules, the Victory Point value of the Bait is not counted with the total when dividing between northern & southern armor groups.
When using this rule, the Ogre player may follow his placement with a Move -- so long as no part of it takes the Ogre southward -- followed as normal by firing.
The placement phase of "Hammer & Anvil" is more important than one might realize. Although the Ogre's only objective is to escape, it must engage the enemy to get more than a draw. Yet the longer it stays, the greater its chances of never leaving-- for it faces more firepower than in "Kill the Command Post." The forces and starting positions of each side have been planned to offer each side roughly equal chances of success, assuming each player places and moves wisely . . .
5.1 Ambush Strategy
Use only GEVs in the northern Armor group. The Ogre will most likely bolt southward, and the northern units will need to move fast to catch it. (And if it doesn't run, it'll be trying to remove the northern Armor first -- so you'll need the speed to avoid it until reinforcements arrive from the south.)
It is vital to slow the Ogre's movement, so target only its tread units at first. Once it has been slowed, you may remove the weapons in order of priority.
Remember that you must destroy the Ogre to win, but the survival of your own forces is secondary. If necessary, sacrifice units by placing them in the Ogre's path, in order to take out tread units in overrun combat.
5.2 Ogre Strategy
There are two basic approaches: Cautious and Bold.
In the Cautious approach, the Ogre (perhaps smelling something fishy) ignores the Bait and places in the bottom half of the Kill Zone. Immediately run straight for the southern border. Make no diversions, and pick off ambushers as they come near you. If you make it to the border with at least two movement points left, wait around and pick off some more.
In the Bold approach the Ogre takes the Bait, placing at the sides or northern edge of the Kill Zone and charging to the attack. If enough damage can be done to the ambushers quickly, they may lack the firepower to prevent escape. When using the Bold approach, make certain that you destroy the Command Post.
Article publication date: August 24, 2001
Copyright © 2001 by Steve Jackson Games. All rights reserved. Pyramid subscribers are permitted to read this article online, or download it and print out a single hardcopy for personal use. Copying this text to any other online system or BBS, or making more than one hardcopy, is strictly prohibited. So please don't. And if you encounter copies of this article elsewhere on the web, please report it to email@example.com.