Father Geek posted a review of The Drive on Metz, a dice-rolling war game from Victory Point Games. Here’s a snippet:
- For ages 8 and up (publisher suggests 12+)
- For 2 players
- Approximately 40 minutes to complete
- Counting & Math
- Logical & Critical Decision Making
- Strategy & Tactics
- Risk vs. Reward
- Area Control
- Child – Moderate
- Adult – Easy
Theme & Narrative:
- It’s September 7th, 1944 and two forces are about to engage in a struggle that historically could have gone either way.
- Gamer Geek approved!
- Parent Geek mixed!
- Child Geek approved!
It’s the morning of September 7th, 1944. If he can, Patton will take control of the city of Metz and cross the Moselle river. If they can do it fast enough, the United States can stop the retreating German forces from rallying. Historically, the Germans won, but the battle could have gone either way. If the United States had won, World Ward II could have ended months early, saving a countless number of lives on all sides.
The Drive on Metz, by Victory Point Games and part of their Battlesson series, is comprised of 1 foldout game map and 40 square chits that represent the United States and German forces, as well as other various markers and counters. Not included in the game, but necessary to play, is a standard six-sided die.
Game Set Up
To set up the game, first place the foldout game map between the two players. Note that the game map contains not only the area in which the players will do battle, but it also contains helpful reference tables, turn order sequence, a Victory Point track, a combat results table, and a Game Turn track.
econd, determine who will play as the German forces and who will play as the United States forces. Note that the game is slightly biased towards the German forces (which is historically correct). New players to the game should take the German side for an easier game play experience.
Third, give to each player their initial unites. For this set up, all units with a victory point (VP) value in their upper right should be set aside. These are used in different game variants and scenarios, but not the base game summarized here. Note that the markings represent different unit types (infantry, armored, etc.), but play no real role in the game other than to help keep units organized and further reinforce the narrative.
Each player now sets up their units on the map. Each unit has a starting position which are clearly described in the game rules and accompanying game visual aids.
Third, place the Game Turn marker in the box with the value “1″ to indicate the first turn.
Fourth, place each player’s Victory Point markers in the matching boxes alongside the Victory Point track on the game map.
That’s it for game set up. Time to see if history repeats itself.
A River, a City, and a Chance
The game is a reenactment of Pattons’ forces attempting to take over the city of Metz in France and route the German forces before they can regroup and organize. The battle was hard-fought on both sides, with many casualties. Historically, the battle was won by the German forces, but nothing is for certain in this game. While the set up and balance is slightly tilted in the player’s favor who is playing the German forces, the game must still be won by both players through smart plays and logical thinking.
The game is played in 7 turns (each round is considered a day) with each turn consisting of 7 sequential steps. These steps are summarized here. To read the complete rules and get the full details, download the rules from the game’s web page.
Step 1: United States Victory Point Scoring
The first step determines if the player who is commanding the United States forces is awarded any victory points (VP). For every unit that is east of the Moselle river (north is indicated on the game map), the player is awarded 1 victory point.
Step 2: United States Unit Movement
The second step allows the commander of the United States forces to advance upon the city of Metz. The player can move as many or as few of their units as they like. Each unit has a movement allowance which provides a number of movement points that determines how many hexagon spaces they can traverse. As long as the unit has movement points to spend, it can be moved on the game map. A unit can never move through an enemy unit or end their turn on an enemy or friendly unit. A unit must stop if it passes in any of the 6 adjacent hexagonal spaces that surround an enemy unit, becoming immediately engaged. The game map contains all other information regarding terrain movement modifiers and combat modifiers based on the terrain found in the area.
To learn more, visit Father Geek’s site here.