Wednesday, January 25, 2006

Camp Cromwell 24/01/06

Camp Cromwell Bulletin 24/01/06

MarkII's DOGs v. SteveP's Russians in a FFA

Steve's very spectacular Cossacks charged an objective held by infantry while most of his army kept the Dogs at bay on the other flank. The Cossacks got pinned in the first charge, but survived enemy fire to attack again and win the battle for Mother Russia.

James' Grenadiers defending v. MarkI's US Inf in a Hold the Line

Mark tried to rush the pair of Tigers with his 5 Shermans. With close range shots in the side, they managed just one bail. Retribution was swift and terrible. The US 105's did a lot of damage to the advancing infantry and Pak 40s & the GIs beat off the first Grenadier attack, but a second assault with more Grenadiers, Pioneers and the Tigers took the objective. The US had nothing close enough to counterattack the objective, and could not bring enough fire to bear to clear it. A German victory.

SteveJ's Grenadiers v. Renfrey's Ozzies in a free for All

The Oz advance looked to be taking a pounding, but in the end the Fearless Veterans over-ran an objective & refused to be blasted back off it. A win for Oz.
Both sides had airpower, Steve's managed to wipe a Valentine, Renfrey's mostly didn't show up & if it did the 88s shot it down.

Fort Floreat 24/1/2006

Disaster on the Don version 2.

6 months later, in the middle of winter ...

Starn and Coreena dropped by to give their Germans a run in Flames of War. I rolled up terrain from Za Stalina -- and again the Russian steppes were flat. Major terrain was a farm in the middle of the table, a railway embankment (that blocked line of sight), and SNOW.

The Germans had a grenadier army, containing a tiger and two 88's. The Russians had a horde of T-34's, a horde of T70's, some mortars and some infantry. The scenario was breakout.

The SNOW was a killer for the Russian tanks -- they had to make a bogging roll every time they moved! And they couldnt double move, killing the T34 maneuver advantage! And just like the last time, the Russians lived in fear of the 88's and tiger.

The Russian's had 11 x T-34s on a flank march -- over 1/2 of their army. So they couldnt do much until the flank march came on. The Russians tried to run their infantry to the farmhouse in the middle of the board, but lost the infantry to a mass bombardment of nebelwefers, 75mm infantry guns, heavy machine guns, and the tiger. The Russian mortars were taken out by the 88's. So for several turns the Russians and Germans just sat and watched each other -- the only movement being Starn rushing his tiger back to guard an objective.

The T-34's finally came on, and they concentrated their firepower on the 88's. At the same time the T70's attacked from the other side of the board. The initial salvo of the T-34's was aimed at the 88's -- and did no damage. And the retribution was terrible -- 5 T-34s were killed by the tiger and the 88's, and another two bailed. The Russians survived a morale test, and tried again, taking out an 88. The T-70s took out another 88. And the tiger missed! So no further morale check!

The 5 remaining T34's rushed the vacant objective. The tiger killed another 2, but the remaining tanks survived a final morale check, and won 5-2 (holding the objective).

It was a hollow victory -- the Germans lost 3 teams in the whole game, while the Russians lost just about everything -- they had 3 T34's and some T70's (mostly bogged in the snow) left! The Russians only won by surviving 3 morale checks -- this is where fearless morale helps!

Friday, January 20, 2006

Camp Cromwell Bulletin 19/01/06

Monday at Camp Cromwell

James' DAK defending v. Renfrey's Oz Inf in Hold the Line
When the inevitable 88 ambush took out the Valentines it looked grim for Oz.
But they pressed on & the tide turned a bit.
James' advanced his Dianas too far & they were destroyed by well placed 6pdr portees & infantry, while the 25pdrs screened off the Hun HMGs & the Oz HMGs took out the 88s.
The Hun Grenadiers launched counterattacks on both flanks. Both looked good moves, one was on a pinned platoon, the other a flank attack, but the Fearless Vets weathered both attacks, though one platoon was down to 1 base.
Then Renfrey's renewed attack on the right rolled the remnants of the Paks & 88s and pushed the Germans to an army morale test - which they failed.
Both sides had limited air. The RAF came 5 times, 3 times it was intercepted, twice it couldn't find a target. The Luftwaffe didn't show up on the battlefield at all. So much for airpower.
A narrow 4:3 win to Oz.

Thursday at Camp Cromwell

Jim & Renfrey Fucilieri v. SteveP's Russians - SteveP defending the Cauldron
The Kvs sat invincible on one objective while the Ities threw the kitchen sink at the other one.
Forced to counterattack, the Ivan infanty left their trenches and were mown down.
A Fucileri platoon staggered onto the objective and bayonetted the wounded to secure victory.

MarkI's DAK v.SteveJ's US Mechanised- SteveJ defending a Hold the Line
MarkI lost huge casualties as most of his platoons were reduced to 1 team sculkimg in the woods, but the 88's still had the objective in their Zone of Death and his recon managed to survive US fire to hold on to it for a turn & win the game.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

SteveP's Place Saturday 14/01/06

Saturday at Pottery Rd

A couple of practice matches for the upcoming Area 52 Tournament.

1. MarkII's Oz Inf defending the Cauldron against SteveP's Russians:
With Mark's reinforcements being slow to arrive, he just didn't have enough bodies at the front to stop the Soviet horde.
A comfortable 5:1 win for Steve in just on 1.5 hours. No Russian platoons lost, though one had taken a hell of a hammering.

2. Jim's Bersaliglieri attacking MarkII's Oz Inf in a Breakthrough:
The Ities pinned down one flank with 90/53s & HMGs while they overwhelmed the other flank with the usual swarm of tin cans & infantry The Ozies did take out the Bersaglieri infantry platoon before their casualties caused Coy Morale failure. A 5:2 win for Italia in less than 1.5 hours.

Thursday, January 12, 2006

Camp Cromwell 12/01/06

Camp Cromwell Bulletin 12/01/06

FOW 1500 pts HTL

Jim's Fucilieri defending v. MarkW's DOGs in Hold the Line on small table.
Pic shows Ities in foreground as the DOGs prepare to attack.
A tight defence against an inexperienced attack. It was Death not Glory tonight.

FOW 1500 pts HTL

SteveP's Russians defending v. Mariusz's Polish Armour in Hold the Line on small table.
Pic shows Poles in foreground launching their attack.
Perhaps demoralised by the almost invincible KVs, the Polish attack was not as coordinated as it might have been and failed to break through.

Also present: Renfrey, SteveJ, James

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Fort Floreat 10/1/2006

Disaster on the Don

Anthony came up for his first visit to the Fort, and his first game of Flames of War. He bought a small contingient of German infantry, supported by two tiger tanks. Opposing him was the assembled hordes of Ghengis Khan riding T-34s and T70s, with a few infantry and katyushas in support.

We did a breakthrough scenario on a board rolled up out of the Za Stalina rules. The net effect was a river running through the board -- with some marshes and creeks. There was nothing -- repeat nothing -- for the Russians to hide behind. The two tigers were deployed near the center of the board. With the tigers massive range and no hiding places, there was only a tiny corner of the board where the Russians could deploy and not be in tiger range.

The Russians decided they had no hope in a conventional battle, so they went for 'bait and switch'. The Russian SP guns and Katyushas were deployed to provide a tempting target for the tigers if they moved away from the objectives. The aim was to bring on a flank march and steal the objective before the Tigers could get back.

It all started well with the tigers being lured away. Then my first flank march came on too early and lured the tigers back. My second flank march didnt appear till turn 7. But by then it was 'can 8 x T34's kill 2 x Tigers?'. The answer was a resounding 'No!'

Anthony got his first victory, not losing a single stand to the Russians.

I do have to say that upon reflection, Za Stalina tank armies are going to have a hard time. The terrain for Za Stalina is generally open, with a minimum of concealing terrain. 88's and Tigers are going to have full effect. Russian forces will need to be heavy in artillery and 85mm guns, and poor in T-34s. Not that historical -- but a good excuse to buy more :)

Friday, January 06, 2006

Camp Cromwell 05/01/06

Camp Cromwell 05/01/06
FOW 2000pts Hold the Line.

Jim's Fucilieri defending v. 2 Steves' Russian Infantry
The Italians had no 90's but lots of artillery & a/tank guns. Their allies supplied a grenadier plat plus some Pak 40's.
The Ities had 10T34s & 3 KVs to back up the grunts. By agreement, neither side had air.
The Ivans suffered badly in the advance from artillery and gun fire, but as usual once they got to the infantry line they overwhelmed it.
On the Russian left SteveP's infantry cleared a forward Fucileri platoon out of a wood, but were then pounded to death by a hail of artillery and mortar fire.
His T34s had been sent to help SteveJ in the main attack on the forward objective on the Itie left.
The Ities might have held back their Pak 40s a tad too long. They didn't destroy enough T34's before they dived into the wood around the objective and joined the KVs in the big push on the objective, the Ivan infantry having been driven back by a Fucilieri counterattack.
The Grenadiers fell back at the first approach of the KVs, but the lead one bogged in the consolidation. Fucilieri attacked the bogged down platoon & destroyed it.
meanwhile the L6s had snuck forward and finished off the rest of the Ivan infantry.
The Russians passed one coy morale test, but with just a few T34s & their command left, it was only a matter of time. They failed the second time giving the Ities a hard won victory.

Sunday, January 01, 2006

Camp Cromwell 01/01/06

Mahrajah 2005 match Sunday morning 01/01/06

Nick's US Inf v. Mark's Itie Inf...Hold the Line on small table, Ities attacking.
Mark started with a fearsome blaze of 6's making most of his army fearless.
But after that it was all downhill for the Ities. The Regio Aero came the first 2 turns, but on turn 1 there were no good targets (everything in reserve, in ambush or holed up) & on turn 2, when there were 3 planes, they attacked the wrong side (though didn't do any damage).On the ground, Mark's attacks went well until they made contact with the enemy, then they couldn't kill a thing & got slaughtered in the counterattacks.
The Itie light mortars & semo 75s stopped the counterattacks for a time, but the Itie's only real hope now was a big change of luck with the planes. After many turns of fruitless scanning of the skies, the Stukas finally came back - only to attack the 88's again. By now the ities had no-one over the centreline so it was game over 5:2.
The pic shows high tide of the Itie advance as Nick checks out the Zone-Of-Death in front of the 88s before deploying his ambushes.

Camp Cromwell Bulletin 29/12/05

Tuesday morning 27/12/05

Dillon's US Inf (MarkO mentoring) v. Jim's DAK
1500 pts FFA on big table with a fair bit of terrain.
Dillon got first move & zapped an 88 and a Pak 38 before the Huns could GTG.
After a Hun Grenadier probe was beaten off with heavy loss, the Huns went to ground and waited for the US to attack.
Dillon redeployed his armour to his left where the objective was in the open, and attacked with Honeys supported by Shermans & Infantry.
As the US attack was about to get under way the Huns launched an attack of their own on their objective on the other flank with A/cars & grenadiers.
The US attack's infantry support evaporated under the Heavy Platoon's mortars & mgs, the Shermans were tied up dealing with the 88 & the Dianas doing the Marder shuffle. The Honeys got on the objective, but the surviving Dianas still disputed it.
The 1st A/car attack on the tother flank was replused, but a second attack with the Grenadiers secured this objective while the last Diana held onto the other one.
The US mortars & artillery had one chance to destroy the Huns on the objective but couldn't do it.
Though the Huns were within a whisker of losing, had heavy casulties on everyone & had 3 plats down to 1 team, they had a 6:1 win. Another demo of how dumb the Victory Points system is.