Tally Ho!

Saturday 27 January 2024

D Day Campaign - Turn 0, the airborne assaults

 D Day began with a series of airborne assaults in the early morning and to model this Turn 0 featured attacks on the Orne River, Merville Battery and St Martin-De-Verreville. All would impact the later phases of the campaign in different ways.  

 Orne River

Things started poorly for the Brits as both gliders were wrecked on landing, depleting the occupants. They none the less assaulted bravely, but were rebuffed. The flamethrowers also performed poorly and so the attack on the canal bridge quickly stalled. 

The Para's performed better, quickly eliminating the river bridge guards and advancing to support the  glider troops. The Germans reinforcements also arrived very quickly were able to bolster the troops holding the canal bridge.  

Canal bridge in German hands

The actioned ended with dawn and the river bridge secured by the Para's but the canal bridge firmly in German hands. The Para's would have to attack in day light to prevent 16th Panzer being able to push towards the beaches. 

Para's hold the river bridge

Merville Battery

The planned glider assault failed to arrive and so it was up to the Para's to attack from the in-land side and prevent the 150mm guns firing into the beaches.

Merville Battery

The Para's moved rapidly through the dark and looked to mass against the east side of the battery while a blocking force with most of the heavy weapons headed for the road where German reinforcements would  appear. Any resemblance to the Zulu at Rorke's Drift was purely accidental. 

Para's sir, 1000s of um

After some hard fighting the Para's pushed into the battery while the blocking force managed to slow-down the reinforcements. There was a series of attacks and counters but in the end the Para's were able to hang on long enough to destroy both bunkers. This would mean less artillery on Sword Beach.

Battery attacked

St Martin-De-Verreville

The 101st airborne were badly scattered by German Flak but still a sizable force made it to the town with its associated battery. The airborne launched their main attack in the west while a blocking force looked to put pressure on the east and intercept any reinforcements.  
St Martin battery

The Screaming Eagles moved quickly and began to attack the battery before any German reinforcements were in sight. The defenders fought stoutly but were badly out-numbered and were forced out of the bunkers.    

This left the 101st to destroy the bunkers before the Germans could bring more troops into the field. 
101st attack

So turn 0 ends with the Orne River contested but the batteries at St Marin and Merville destroyed. 


Tuesday 16 January 2024

D Day - beach assault practice


For the second of our "play as the enemy" games  we did the D Day landings themselves, with two beaches - one modelled on Sword and one on Utah. We simplified the games by reducing the force sizes slightly and not doing some of the pre-game moves. 

Sword Beach

The British forces relied on a decent number of "Funnies" and other armoured vehicles to help them cross the beach and assault the defenders. This was backed by commandos and beach assault troops.  

The Brits suffered an early mishap as their flail tank was lost exiting the landing craft and some of the troops drift further left than planned. This worked for them though so they had troops facing the thinnest part of the German defences.   

The Casino

The British were able to exit the beach and make some progress in land, by-passing several of the German bunkers. 

The game ended with the British infantry still around the beach area but tanks threatening one of the beach exits.

Utah Beach

The US forces were infantry heavy but did feature 7 DD tanks to help breakdown the defences. Things started poorly though with 5 of the 7 DD tanks failing it make it to shore and one brewing-up rapidly.     

Central strongpoint

The ill-fated DD's

The US infantry became hung-up on the beach wall and taking heavy fire. They managed to cause damage to the central strong point but themselves lost much of the first and second wave.    

Rangers hit the beach

We ended with things undecided but the US probably lacking the time and forces to capture the beach exits.  


Saturday 13 January 2024

D Day - airborne landing practice


Before we begin our D Day campaign we decided it would be interesting to let the German players take the Allied side for some of the iconic games - the airborne landings and beach assaults. So this week the airborne landings with Merville Battery, the Orne River bridges and a factious US airborne attack on guns St Martin De Verreville. This later action could have happened, but the Germans evacuated rather than fight.

Mereville Battery

In this game 9th Parachute battalion attacked at night against defenders dug-in around the battery, with  reinforcements in a nearby village. 

Mereville Battery


The Para's bum-rushed the German position and despite the Germans reinforcements arriving  very rapidly they were able to overrun the defenders and take the battery after some hard hand-to-hand fighting.

St Martin De Verreville

101st airborne attacked dug-in Germans dug-in around the village of St Martin.  They adopted a cautious approach looking to setup firing positions and blast the enemy.  

St Martin Battery

This steady approach limited their loses but allowed the German reinforcements time to get into the defences. The game ended with the  Screaming Eagles unable to capture the battery before day light.

Orne River Bridges

Perhaps the most famous action of the night with the Oxs & Buck light infantry launching a glider-borne Coup-de-Main whilst 7th Parachute battalion try to reach them before the German reinforcements.  

Pegasus Bridge

The troops initially stalled as they tried to fire at the canal defenders before finally attacking with flamethrower support. This proved devastating and the Germans fled, leaving the bridges in allowed hands.   


Tuesday 2 January 2024

New Years Day game - Hearts and Minds for Firefight

For New Years Day I was back in Fishponds playing Firefight, with Enforcers vs Forge Fathers. In this scenario there are 6 buildings on the table sheltering civilians who must be wooed to score points each turn. Knowing the Forge Fathers reputation for survivability I came loaded-for-bear with lots of AT weapons and my new Novashock Peacekeepers with their AT option. 

I pushed forward across the line trying to secure the three buildings on my side and make some progress towards the buildings on the enemy side. The Forgefathers kept about half their force back looking to inflict some long-range damage whilst committing some troops to secure the buildings. 

Novashock troopers advance

Enforcer Strider supporting the attack on the right

The FF's secured all three of their buildings in turn 1 but I only secured two of mine. The third refused to be persuaded and it took 12 roles (50/50 chance) across three rounds before it finally came on board.  
The Iron Ancestor - big for a dwarf!

Forgefathers Sturnhammer tank

After 2 turns the FF heavy armour was neutralised by the Novashocks, a Strider and some infantry missile launchers chipping-in. 

We then got down to some close quarter shooting and fighting around the central set of buildings with the FFs also struggling on a couple of rolls. Somehow this left me 2 points up going into the final round. 

I took some heavy hits and was effectively wiped-out on my right flank, but just had a large enough lead to win by 2 points. A close game and certainly one where you can be unlucky on a few buildings and find yourself behind.     

Novashock trooper holds his ground