Tally Ho!

Saturday 16 September 2017

Forward, Victory is near - WWII campaign opener

We opened our new WWII campaign with a half-sized practice game to refresh the rules and give time for last minute tweaks. We're using our home-brew Fire Team rules available here.

Our setup was a simple one - both sides had an infantry platoon seeking to push onto the table and scout the farm complex, which is an Italia 1/72 Le Haye Sainte I've had for a while.

View from the Russian left flank

View from the Russian right flank
The Germans deployed the bulk  of their infantry early including the recoilless rifle  in a good position on a low hill. This spent much of the game trading blows with the Russian maxim deployed just in front of the hill on their deployment edge. 

Germans deploy early

Russian AOP and HMG
On the Russians right they advanced into the farm unopposed and took up residence in the farm house. To their right another squad advanced to cover the flank by occupying the edge of the wood.
Ruskies sneak into the farm 
Seeing themselves slightly at a disadvantage the Germans pushed-forward across the line with the Hetzer moving at full speed down the road towards the Russian lines and begin shelling the Maxim. At this point the Soviets made two important interventions - a German squad was pinned crossing some open ground on the Russians left and accurate mortar fire forced the Hetzer to button-up and seek cover.      

The Hetzer advances

Ouch - Germans get pinned in the open

Russian right
Concerned about the growing threat on the Russian right the Hetzer withdrew and moved across to cover that side, whilst also moving out of site for the mortar team. In the centre the Germans were caught in a cross-fire and pinned by more mortar fire.  

Now the Hetzer retreats

Germans move forward in the middle
With looses mounting the Germans quit the field and left the farm to the Russians.

The Hetzer arrives on the Russian right
So a good win for the Russians and serious casualties for the Germans. The mortars definitely proved useful in pinning the Germans to allow the other Russian troops to inflict some telling damage on the Veteran Fallschirmj√§ger. The Germans could perhaps have helped themselves though by establishing better covering fire for the advances.

We will make two tweaks to the rules.
1.  Troops touching the back of tall cover (hills, woods, BUA) will count as in dead ground.
2. AOPs will have a limited range - 36"

The second change is to prevent a single AOP on a hill dominating the whole battle field and preventing any movement. The range limit is a bit of a fudge but avoids the need for spotting rules.  

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