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Posted on Mar 26, 2008 in Boardgames, Electronic Games, Front Page Features

Axis & Allies Miniatures: North Africa 1940-1943 – Day 3

By Paul Glasser

Avalon Hill is scheduled to release the latest booster pack North Africa 1940-1943 for the Axis & Allies Miniatures game on March 28. All this week, leading up to the release day, Armchair General is giving grognards interested in this collectible miniatures combat game an inside preview! We sent our own Paul Glasser under the wire to scope out the new reinforcements to the game, and his reports detail valuable information regarding the new units and maps that are incoming. Read on for his full debriefing, and be sure to report back tomorrow for further details!

Axis & Allies Miniatures: North Africa 1940-1943 – Day 3


The first new Allied infantry units for Axis and Allies Miniatures: North Africa 1940-1943 have been introduced!

French armies will now be able to draw on the elite Alpine infantry. These hardy soldiers will be tough to kill, with a solid 5/5 defense. However, they lack the firepower of other elite units, such as the SS Panzergrenadiers, US Army Rangers or 101st Screaming Eagles.

The Alpine troops offer only mediocre attack strength against enemy infantry at medium range and roll fewer dice when making close-assaults against enemy armor. The trade-off is they cost less than other “elite units.” They have one unique skill that gives them a +1 bonus when making movement checks. That’s not really much of an advantage unless your opponent deploys lots of barbed wire or the map is covered with difficult terrain like cliffs or rivers. However, this addition provides French forces with inexpensive and efficient infantry support early in the war.

French Alpine troops fought in several different theaters, with some seeing action as far away as Norway. Some also defended against the Italian attack in June 1940. Although outnumbered by more than 700,000 invaders, the 35,000 soldiers of the French Alpine Army halted the Italians after they advanced only 5 miles. The Italians suffered more than 5,000 casualties, including 2,000 victims of frostbite, at the cost of only eight Frenchmen.

Other new units include a Greek officer. This soldier’s real advantage is his ability to boost the combat strength of adjacent friendly units. If an enemy unit is destroyed in the previous turn, nearby allies will roll one extra die when attacking.

The officer himself is not very combat-effective, with low attack values and a weak close-assault skill. He offers a good bonus (+2) to initiative, but at nine points is slightly more expensive than most other Allied officers with similar skills. With a year limit of 1941, the Greek officer will also be of value in any scenarios that portray the later stages of Greco-Italian War or the Battle for Crete.

Both units are Uncommon and are listed respectively at #3 and #4 on the roster of 60 upcoming units. That suggests there will be at least two more French units, although some players were hoping for more.


ACG Intel:

Avalon Hill

Axis & Allies Miniatures