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Poor Bloody Infantry: Somme
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Poor Bloody Infantry: Somme

Watermarked PDF

Poor Bloody Infantry: Somme is a solitaire, tactical (individual men) WW1 board wargame simulating some of the events of July 1st, 1916, the first day of the Somme campaign, and the bloodiest day in British army history.  In the game, you (the gamer) take charge of one 45-soldier platoon going over the top against the German trenches and machine guns opposite (played by the game system).  Naturally, the object of the game is for your platoon to take the German trench with as few casualties as possible. 

But wait. There is a twist.  Each of your men in the game is represented by a named, individual counter.  Before play, you must choose one man that "represents" you.  To win the scenario, your platoon must take the enemy trench, AND your man must survive.  And your platoon is one from many historical units that attacked that first day.  For instance, the standard scenario ("Red Hand at Thiepval Wood") represents one platoon from A Company, 14th Royal Irish Rifles (Belfast Young Citizens), which is part of the 109th Brigade, 36th (Ulster) Division, attacking northwest of Thiepval. Other historical scenarios are also provided (eight in all, plus campaign game).  Regular, Territorial, and New Army units are represented in the scanarios.

Essentially, PBI: Somme has been designed to be an experience game, in some ways a mix be-tween a traditional wargame and an historical role-play game. Essentially, you will set up your plan of attack, and then watch the action “unfold” before your eyes.

This PDF version includes a 16-page digest sized illustrated rule booklet containing all the rules, tables, and optional rules necessary for play, an 8.5" x 11" hexagon mapsheet, a set of nearly 150 color counters and markers, and a Reference Card.  After scanning and printing the game components, you will need to separate them before play.  You will also need a six-sided die, and a deck of standard playing cards to play. 

From the Designer's Notes:  "Individually named counters remind us that individuals fought and died that summer morning, 60,000 British casualties all told (including 20,000 killed) by the end of the first day. Success was spotty.... To HQ it didn’t matter if particular soldiers or units survived or not, as long as objectives were taken and the timetable met. But to each particular soldier involved it did matter, and the game’s victory conditions reflect this. And shame on you if you decide to 'go to ground' and let your pals lead the advance on the enemy trench. There’s no rule against this sort of behavior, but it says something about your character and courage if you resort to such a tactic, even in a game."

Poor Bloody Infantry: Somme was published by Minden Games in 2016, and is available for the first time in PDF format.  It rates high in playability and historicity, with scenarios that can be completed in about half an hour.  The game provides good, old-fashioned historical wargaming fun, as well as solid historical lessons about WWI trench warfare.  Designed by Gary Graber.  Published by Minden Games.

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5.98 MB
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Watermarked PDF
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File Last Updated:
January 02, 2019
This title was added to our catalog on January 02, 2019.