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Final Standings from BKN PBeM #8

 1. Andrew Cummins
 2. Peter Brunken
 3. Mike Kaye
 4. Scott Fenn
 5. Henry Jones
 6. Mark Gutfreund

Here is Andrew's account of the championship game:

The game start was particularly intense,  at the end of the 6th, the advantage had gone back and
forth, German forces recontested Juno beach with a 21stPz divisional attack from Caen almost
clearing the beach.  Omaha was cleared by the Americans, inflicting 11cp's on the defenders after
a heavy naval bombardment.  Most telling, a regiment of the 4th managed to fight its way
over the causeway and D2 the Martin CA in St Mere.  End of the 6th Utah, Omaha, Gold are allied,
Juno & Sword are contested.

On the 7th,  Allies prep UK Navy & Air against Caen to no effect, then switch to Utah, where St Mere
is cleared by the landing 90th Div.   Forces at Sword clear the beach and then successively Juno and
Merville, lengthening the day.  Germans counterbombard into Merville and punish the 3rd. US Navy
heavily bombards Carentan, which the Germans reinforce under allied air attack.  The second shoe
drops as 4/22 & 101st Div swarm into Carentan sticking and badly hurting the defenders. Additional 
German reinforcements are punished by US Tac-air.  Forces in Omaha expand their bridgehead. Day ends
with exchanges of artillery fire on both sides.

Start of the 8th, Caen and Carentan are under pressure, initial German move is to reinforce Pont l'Abbe.
Allied Naval bombardment into Carentan almost whiffs inflicting a single pt on the lead defender.
Peter ignored this and did a major reinforcement move into Caen.  I push a two-divisional assault
against Carentan 16 attack against 13 defense + steps and clear it, gaining two daylight shifts.  
The turn progresses with the fall of Isigny and Port-en-Bessin, linking the allied forces, softening up
of and then the contesting of Caen.  Omaha forces take St Jean south of Catz threatening to cut to the
sea but the day ends with the repulse of 2Div unsuccessfully attempting to contest Foret d'Cresey

The ninth sees the British take Bayeux, which the Germans had withdrawn from uncontested and 
the Americans take isolated Catz.  Germans reinforce Tilly, Villars and Caumont as British soften then
heavily assault Tilly with the intention of pinning and preventing German units from supporting the
stretched west side of the front.  This succeeded beyond my anticipation as the Germans counter-attacked
in force with Lehr into the Tilly bocage to little effect.  The day continued with US 2A/CCA contesting Foret,
St Jores being cleared and St Lo bombarded to soften the defense.  The Germans scrambled on their
reinforcements and the day ended on the 9th impulse with 90/357 contesting la Haye-du-Puits, threatening
to cut off the peninsular and making resupply north of la Haye hugely expensive.

The situation is pretty dire now for the Germans at the start of the 10th...as the Allies I have 8.7 or so VP...needing 
either the advantage or another VP for victory with maybe four ways of achieving it.  Isolating and clearing Foret, 
cutting the peninsular, taking Pont l'Abbe or driving north to St Vaast / Barfleur.  I went for the boring approach, 
contesting St Lo and Balleroy early on the 10th, leaving me with two and a half days to clear Foret.

Once the position was set up the Germans surrendered the game.

Peter's style of play was interesting, combining dashing counter-attack with passive defense.  This game 
demonstrated quite handily that being able to roll good dice at the right time is a key component of
successful championship play!  If he had brought off his attack against Juno Beach, this would have
been a completely different game!!

PBeM #9 Start Date: April 1, 2014

For those of you that are thinking of switching to L2, here is a link that summarizes the changes but gives more detail if you desire that. If you have the AH version, you have everything you need to play:


Requirements to Play:

  • you must be a member of the BPA; the BPA now has a special PBeM membership for only $10
  • you must allow the game to be submitted to AREA; this will be done by the GM; no chits need be exchanged
  • you must own a physical copy of the game and have an email address
  • you are required to use ACTS to keep a record of the game


Game: The standard one-week game of Breakout: Normandy, either the AH version of the L2 version. At the start of the tournament, players will indicate their version preference and players with like preferences will be matched against one another. Thus there will be two brackets, AH and L2. When one bracket has been reduced to one player, it will be merged with the other bracket. The preference of the majority of the players at the start of the tournament will become the default version used in case 2 players prefer opposite versions.  No optional rules will be used. Rules 12.53 and 22.4 for the AH version are modified as listed immediately below. Variants that BOTH players have agreed upon to the one week game are allowed. However, if you look under Side Determination below, keep in mind that you will be bidding for a certain side without knowing who your opponent will be or which side you will get. Please make the GM aware if special rules are being used.

Rule 12.53 is modified as follows. - The maximum daily impulse purchase limit of three per player is removed. There is no limit to the number of daily impulses either player may purchase, given sufficient Supply Reserve. However, the Impulse Marker may never be moved below Impulse C or above Impulse 12.

Victory Points:
9.6 VPs or higher are required for an Allied win. Rule 22.4 is modified to award a Victory Point to the Allies for contesting areas worth 6 VPs, not 7. Claiming that VP does not prevent the Allied player from also fulfilling the ".6" portion of the VC by contesting more areas worth an additional 6 VPs.

Format: This will be a single elimination tournament. There will be no byes. When one becomes necessary, an Eliminator - an ineligible player -  will be assigned as an opponent. The Eliminator cannot advance, but he can eliminate an opponent. All eliminated players and interested latecomers are urged to offer their services as an Eliminator.  Positions three through six will be resolved in the following manner: 3rd place goes to player who lost to the eventual winner in the 2nd last round; 4th place to the player who lost to the runner-up in the 2nd last round; 5th place to the player who lost to the eventual winner in the 3rd last round; and 6th place to the player who lost to the runner-up in the 3rd last round.  

Time Limits: Each round will last for 5 months or until all matches have been completed, whichever comes first. There will be no adjudications of games at the end of the 5 months. Instead each player will indicate the amount of time they used to complete their side of the game and the side greater than 2.5 months in total time will be the automatic loser, no matter what the actual situation in the game is. I am hoping that in the spirit of good sportsmanship that players can agree on which player used the most time. If not, each player in a timely manner will submit evidence of how long he took to complete all of his moves. We will now have ACTS to assist in this process.

 Playing Officials: Prior to the start of the tournament, two Assistant GMs will be named to assist the GM. Assistant GMs may participate in the tournament as active players and are eligible to play in all rounds and compete for awards and prizes just as any other player. The GM and Assistant GMs will not be allowed to issue rulings on questions or rule interpretations for matches in which they are personally involved.

GM: Mark Gutfreund gutfreund15@yahoo.com

Asst GM: Andrew Cummins andrewjjcummins@gmail.com

Asst GM: Scott Fenn saftaurean@aol.com
Side Determination:  In contrast to prior tournaments, we will do blind bidding in preliminary rounds (i.e. all rounds prior to semi-finals and finals) and auction bidding in the semi-finals and finals. 

Blind bidding: You do not have to state a side preference; it will be assumed that you are bidding for the German side. You will then bid a number that represents the number of supply that you are willing to give the Allies to start the game. Thus, the higher the number you bid, the more likely you will get the German side. Conversely, the lower the number, the more likely you will get the Allied side. It is even possible to bid "negative supply" to increase your chances of getting the Allied side. The difference between the bids is divided by 2 and then subtracted from the Allied bid with fractions rounded up. So if player One bid 50 supply and player Two 30 supply, player Two would get the Allied supply with 40 in the "bank". These points can only be used for buying impulses and not for refitting units.

Auction bidding: Random numbers will be generated for each player and sent to the assistant GM's. The player with the higher number bids first. Like in blind bidding, you are bidding for the German and the number of supply you are willing to give up to the Allies. Bidding goes back and forth until one player is unwilling to go higher, and that player will get the Allies.

Matching in every round will be completely at random. A random 4 digit number will be assigned to each player. These numbers will be sent to both assistant GM's for verification. Starting with the player with the lowest number, that player will be matched with the player with the next highest number, and so forth. 

Computer Aides
: All players are encouraged but not required to use computer aides. These aides facilitate speed of play, especially during refit and regroup phases, and can represent a permanent record of what has previously occurred in a game if a dispute should arise. Among those available are VASSAL ; one advantage of VASSAL is that it is operating system neutral and therefore workable not only with Windows but also with Macs and Linux. Cyberboard only works with Windows and you have to be able to find a module of each particular game, although this is usually not a problem. Lastly there is Aide de Camp. If there is any discrepancy between the computer board and the physical board, such as counter values or map features, the latter always prevails.

Mistakes and Illegal Moves:
  First, the Internet Die Roll Error Handling Convention will be the default method of deciding disputes. Players can agree to use their own, but I think these are sensible.  In addition, if a dispute arises, the decision of the GM in consultation with the assistant GM's will be final and the GM reserves the right to disqualify a player for deliberate or repeated illegal moves. In short, players should make every effort to work these things out for themselves and, then and only then, consult the GM.
  • 8.13 will be rigorously enforced. If a mistake is made, the player who received the illegal move has only two choices: either accept that move in all of its parts and aspects or have the offending player completely redo the move from the start. So if the allied player is executing a movement impulse with three parts, it is not possible to reroll just one part. The entire thing must be redone. If it is the refit, it is either the whole refit or none of it; if regroup, the whole or none of it. I would encourage players to point out an opponent's error if they are willing to do so. That is merely good sportsmanship. The above applies only to disputes. Obviously this doesn't cover every problem, but it will be the guiding principle for myself and the assistant GM's. 
  • Overstacked areas. If an area is discovered to be overstacked, the situation must be immediately corrected by the following method. The opposing player designates units to be retreated from the overstacked area until stacking limitations are satisfied. The owning player then retreats the designated units from the area according to the retreat priorities listed in 9.64. The implications should be clear: to prevent his most powerful units being retreated from an area, the owning player must make certain that he does not exceed stacking limits. (Example: The Allied player is discovered to have twelve units in St. Mere Eglise on June 9. The German player designates 4/8 infantry and VII corps artillery as the units to be retreated. The Allied player then retreats the two units to Utah Beach.)
End of Your Turn: You should make it clear to your opponent when your turn has ended. Again, according to 8.13, once your opponent has moved one of his units, or a die has been rolled, it is not possible to change any part of your move. In some cases, it will be obvious that an impulse has ended, such as a naval or air bombardment. However, in cases where there happen to be multiple fresh units in the activated area, it may not be obvious to your opponent that you have ended your move; so please try to do this in the interest of faster play. This may also come into play if you have experienced a very adverse die roll (of course, in actual play this hardly ever happens) and are contemplating using the Advantage. If you have a quick response opponent, you may wish to indicate to him that you are considering using the Advantage before he can fire off a move to you and that you need a little time.

Internet Dice Rollers: It is permissible to use the honor system to roll dice, use playing cards, or use chits to decide random events as long as your opponent agrees. Most will want to use one of the internet dice rollers. Among those available are ACTS. One advantage of using this site (which is free) is that it sends an email of every activity to both players and also keeps a log of all those activities. Even if you are using a computer aide, this can be handy if there is a question about a previous move or dice roll.

 Internet Die Roll Error Handling Convention:

  • Too many drs: use the ones you need discarding the rest. Do not reroll.
  • Not enough drs: use the ones you got and send for the rest.
  • If not specified, Attacker dr(s) first, then Defenders 
  • No response from die roller: Best not to send for a second die roll. Wait about 24 hrs, if the drs still haven't shown, the original sender will notify the original receiver to send for the drs. When the receiver is notified he is to roll because of missing drs, and the receiver has yet to receive those drs, the receiver will send, and at that instant the original senders drs will not be used, even if they come in.
  • Multiple die roll requests: Use the drs the receiver got first.
  • If one gamer gets die rolls and the other doesn't and the email addresses were fine : use those dr's. Whoever got the dr's should forward them to the other gamer so he may inspect the email addresses, and if all is OK, use those drs.