Fortify Montreal……Fortify Montreal. The object of the game is to prevent Montreal from being captured…………
If you ever play this game, please, please, please fortify Montreal. Here’s why…….
The British have the strategic advantage, with the ability to advance on five fronts simultaneously . However, the French have the operational advantage in that they can attack both during their phase and the British Advance phase . Tactically, it’s a push. Both sides have special tactical cards which influence not only tactical advantage but also the total number of battalions used in the battle.
Tactical advantage is critical . The side with this advantage toss their “bucket of dice” (one die per battalion in the fight) first with any enemy casualties (battalions) removed immediately . In many cases the side without tactical advantage is simply wiped out before being able to inflict casualties of their own. While this system has its shortcomings, it is appropriate in a game of this scope and size .
During my first real play thru the British were hampered by a lack of leaders, advancing on two fronts and making it easy for the French to use their action points not only to stop any advances, but also construct Forts and Trading Posts .
Trading Posts provide the French with valuable replacements each turn. While Forts prevent the use of light troops for tactical advantage and offer an advantage themselves.
Once there were British leaders for each of their five axes of advance towards Montréal, the French were hard-pressed.
Just as the British were ready to enter Montréal , and end the game, I drew the Montcalm Leader Card.
Montcalm has extraordinary capabilities , and almost turned the tide for the French. But the simultaneous advance of the British armies , combined with some less than favorable die rolls, resulted in the eventual removal of Montcalm and two other French leaders. This re-opened the door to Montréal. And, of course I made it just that much easier by not placing a fort there.
Game Play was relatively smooth . It took a while to figure out which cards to trash and which to discard, rather than place back in the recycle deck . It also took two turns to figure out that the recycle deck is shuffled into the active deck at the end of each turn , or in what is called the Housekeeping Phase.
This is fine addition to the States of Siege series . While the playing time is extended compared to other offering, this trade off is well worth it in terms of depth of play .