Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Fort Floreat 28/11/2006

Aggro, Doug, Chris, James L & Nick (8th Army) attended. The unreliable Ities didn't show.

Breakthrough in Tunisia
James L 1500pts British Light Squadron vs. Aggro 1500pts Grenadiers

Aggro deployed all his troops on the table 2 88's centrally placed, a grenadier in scrub on the left and a grenadier on a rocky ridge on the right. The Tigers were on the start line ready to cover the objectives. The British deployed 10 Honeys on the right and 6 Shermans hull down on the rocky ridge facing the 88's. Two platoons of Honeys in reserve.

Turn 1: The British realised that the only way to win the game was to force a company morale check by killing all but the Tigers. So the Honeys shot at then assaulted the Grenadiers in the scrub. One Honey bogged on the way in but the grenadiers lost a stand before retreating. The Shermans tried to shoot the 88's but needed 7's to hit so retreated instead 1 bogging on the ridge. The Tigers moved across over the next 3 turns to place themselves between the 2 objectives.

Turns 2, 3 & 4: The Honeys eventually killed the grenadiers in the scrub only losing 1 tank in the process. The first Honey Reserve arrived but was killed by the Tigers.

Turn 5: The 6 Shermans attacked the 88's from the front and 3 Honeys from the rear killing the 2 guns the command team failed morale and fled the field. The 2nd Honey Reserve drew some fire away from this situation but died the British lost their second platoon 2 lost each.

Turn 6: The British were within 40cm of an objective and the Shermans with 2 Honeys moved in for the kill against the other grenadiers. The Tigers popped a third Honey Platoon.

Turn 7: The Shermans assaulted and put the Grenadiers below half strength even with the re roll the Germans ran C in C included. The Tigers auto failed company morale and a close win to the British (losing 3 platoons out of 7). 4-3 Win to James L.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Fort Floreat Report 21-11-2006

The hot weather brought the players out of the woodwork with Chris, Aggro, Doug, Mike, James L & the French's Gary, Ben & Matt in attendance. The Italians had arrived in force!

Game 1 Free for All 1500pts. Chris Referee
James L British Armour vs. Matt French & Mike Cole Italian Bersaligari

Italians had limited Air Stukas.

Deployment: The Italians deployed 1 Bersaligari platoon in the village on their right objective, with covering fire from the 47mm AT guns & 88's & C in C in support. Deployed on the left hand objective the 2nd Bersaligari, with 105's & Semmos in support. A platoon of motorcyclisti was in the depression on the far left. The British had 3 Shermans on the right supported by 3 Honeys, 9 Honeys and 3 2pounders centre & 3 Shermans + 3 Honeys on the left.

Turn 1: The Italians dug in waiting for the onslaught.The British did very little under the reluctant British Commander.

Turn 2: Italian Air (Stukas) arrived attacking the bunched up Honeys killing 4 ouch! The Italian artillery killed another exposed Honey. Two of the Honey platoons failed Morale and things were looking bad for the British. The British sat tight? The Commander was about to be court marshalled!

Turn 3: More Air and another Honey unit down to 1 but it passed its morale check, the artillery got another Honey from the 4th platoon, The British survivors were spurred into action and advanced using cover 3 Shermans on the left were hull down and with the 3 on the right & 3 remaining Honeys took on the AT guns killing an 88.

Turn 4: No Air for the Ities. The AT guns bailed up 3 Shermans and killed another Honey. The Brits unbailed a Sherman & returned fire getting the other 88 the command team passed morale and the sole survivor withdrew graciously from the field.

Turn 5: The motorcyclisti double moved behind scrub to approach the British right objective. The artillery failed to do damage, as did the 47mm AT guns. The Semmos flanked the Honeys with in infantry support but failed to hurt them. The infantry failed their tank terror test to finish the 2 Honeys off.

Turn 6: The British armour popped another AT gun & a lucky Sherman killed 2 Semmos the remaining 1 failed morale and fled the field. The Italian motorcyclisti dismounted and were on the objective!

Turn 7: The 2 remaining Honeys managed to get within contesting distance of the objective. The Italians got air, which started killing 2 pounders. The artillery blew the 2 honeys off the objective and the British were on half strength.

Turn 8,9 & 10: The Shermans on the British right were forced back to defend the objective while the other 3 Shermans started killing infantry. The Italians eventually killed the 2pounders and the British failed Company moral a 5-2 win to the Ities.

Post Mortem: In spite of everything the British Shermans were almost untouchable and almost won the game but failed to finish off the Bersaligari on the objective.

Game 2: Hold the Line 1500pts
Doug French defending vs. Aggro Grenadiers
A win to the Frogs! The Germans took an objective but were bounced off by too much firepower.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Camp Cromwell 16/11/2006

Mahrajah 2006 Semi Final 2

SteveJ's Grenadiers v. MarkO's US Inf.
2000 pts Breakthough, US attacking, Tunisia terrain.
MarkW, Jim & Nick officiating.

Mark put 2 infantry platoons & his Shermans in reserve. The first 5 turns passed slowly as Mark tried to soften up the Germans with his masses of artillery (2 105 batteries + chem mortars) and an attack on Steve's forlorn hope of Grenadiers. But the Germans too had plenty of artillery and honours were about even in this phase. Furious dogfights raged overhead as both side's air was intercepted more often than not (and when it wasn't intercepted neither side's planes did a damned thing on the ground).

On turn 6 all the US reserves were brought on at once near the corner objective. A US victory looked a formality as 2 infantry platoons & the Shermans came on next to one objective and the Honeys threatened the other. But perhaps the Pale Ale was taking it's toll as the US attack lost focus. The Germans held on with single teams disputing the objectives while their Pak40s, mortars & HMGs set about clearing the GIs off. The US platoons melted away and at 12.30 with just one charmed Sherman left near the objectives, Mark conceded.

Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Fort Floriet 14/11/06

Doug brought along a new player who was Dougs sub commander. Free for All 1500pts per side. Aggro's Grenadiers vs Doug's Free French Midwar Infantry. The Germans deployed 105's, Marder II's 1st Grenadiers on left objective and 88's 2nd Grenadier right objective. The Frogs had AT guns both flanks, M 10's either flank (2 jeeps), 105's centrally placed, mortars and infantry right flank, and large and small infantry left flank. Both sides had air but the 88's kept the French Air from doing Damage. The German air had no AA to deal with so managed to kill 5 infantry stands and an artillery piece over the course of the game.

Turn 1: Germans dug in all but their 105's. The French did similar.

Turn 2: The French advanced their infantry on the German right and attacked through a town 2 turns later to defeat a grenadier platoon but got severely mauled in the process. the Marders swung to defend the right but 1 was killed by artillery fire.

Turn 5: The French M 10's popped out of ambush killing an infantry platoon.

Turn 6: The 88's were on a killing spree on the enemy artillery. The French artillery was eventually cut down to a half strength battery.

Turn 7: The M 10's assaulted the grenadiers which failed Morale and we ran out of time.Technically a draw but the Frogs had been the most aggreessive and had killed a platoon, but had 1 platoon close to doing a morale check & artillery was now almost useless. A nice set of flank attacks by Doug the M10's were unlucky not to get a 105mm gun.

Some interesting rules cropped up that we hadnt been that familiar with:
  1. Self defence AAMGs only 1 shot each
  2. Aircraft firing at double moving vehicles only normal shooting?
  3. Double moving vehicles no self defence AA (common sense rule).
  4. M 10's shot at by small arms in defensive fire but cant be hurt so no armour save neccessary?
  5. HMG's only 180 degree facing as they are gun teams

Saturday, November 11, 2006

Camp Cromwell 10/11/06

Maharajah 2006 Semi Final 1

SteveP's Strelkovy v. Nick's Panzers...Cauldron Scenario, Panzers attacking.
Jim, SteveJ & MarkW umpiring.
Nick's Panzers engaged the GOWs & vice versa while waiting for reinforcements. Both sides' reinforcements were slow in coming - Nick didn't get his last two until T6, but Steve didn't get his first one until T7. The GOWs lost the fight with the Panzers - just 2 MkIIs died while the GOWs were annihilated. The Ivans made a desperate pre-emptive strike at the Tiger, but with the support of the adjacent Kamffegroup it was stopped in its tracks. Now out of their trenches, the Strelkovy looked to be at the mercy of the machine gun fire of the massed Panzers, but finally the Russian reserves were coming on & some of the Panzers were distracted dealing with the SUs. As always the big Strelkovy took a long time to die and continued to dispute the objective buying time. The KVs had been held back behind the hill to keep them safe from the Tiger, but now they were desperately needed and had to come out and play - but the 105s got one & the others failed to do any damage. The Sturmos came often, but achieved nothing except a MkII & that too late to make any difference. Finally there were too many Panzers on the objective, the 1st Strelkovy ran out of bodies and the next one still wasn't close enough. Well done Nick.

Friday, November 10, 2006

Camp Cromwell Tuesday 07/11/06

SteveP's Strelkovy v. Jim's Panzers - 2000pts Cauldron Russians defending. MarkW advising.
The deployment dice allowed the Germans to make a concentrated deployment at one end of the table. The Russians made a juicy area target with a big Strelkovy & a GOW battery crammed into a 80cm circle.

The Germans were content to bombard with Neblewefers, MkIVF1s & Stukas while waiting for their reserves. The dominant feature of the tabel was a railway embankment clipping the side of the Russian deployment zone. After clearing the Russians defending the embankment the Germans advanced.

At this point Mark kindly pointed out kindly pointed out that it was Steve's Turn 6 & there were no germans within 40cm of an objective. The Germans has misremembered that they had until their turn 6 to get there - there MkIVGs had only moved about 15cm last turn & were just 5cm too far away. Steve gleefully claimed victory. The Germans conceeded a cheezy victory but demanded to fight on.

Russian infantry reserves came on and swarmed over a hill at the Nebels & got the hq, obs & 1 tube before they were mown down by the AA, AC & MkIVF1s. The KVs moved up to give battle but the MkIVGs just slaughtered them. His SUs engaged the MkIIIs & got but one before they evaporated in a storm of 50mm fire. Then the Panzers lined up at the embankment & simply blew the Ivans away.

Airpower was singly ineffective. The Sturmos got 1 MkIV & an AA (the German AA couldn't hit a barn) - but they made them spread out and slowed my advance. The Stukas got just 1 gun.

Saturday, November 04, 2006

Camp Cromwell 04/11/06

Mahrajah 2006 Qualifying Final 2: Steve's Grenadiers v. Chris's Strelkovy.

Hold the Line Scenario, Grenadiers defending. The terrain was relatively cluttered for East Europe with a railway embankment & a stream/river dividing the table on the Russian side of the centreline. Jim & SteveP umpiring (Nick replacing Steve later).

Steve deployed with a boosted Grenadier platoon dug in on the objective with 2Pak40s & 3 SPAA in support, plus 2 Hortisse's in ambush. He had another 2 Grenadiers, 4 105s & 2 75s in reserve, plus Limited Me109s.

Chris had 3 large Strelkovy (some with flamethrower teams attached), 10 Stuarts, GOWs & Limited Cobras.

The swarm of Ivans advanced steadily while the GOWs picked away at what they could & the Honeys followed up. The Germans got some early reinforcements, bringing on more Grenadiers on their right & 105s on their left. A little later the small Grenadier platoon & the 75s came on in the centre.

The central Strelkovy unit attacked the crop field on the (German) right of the objective. The Grenadiers pulled out, then with a lot of fire support counterattacked and drove the Russians back out of it. The right flank and central Strelkovy units were slowly melting away under German firepower while the left flank unit fought the 2nd Grenadiers for the Collective farm. The Honeys were still in the rear, intimidated by the Pak40s on their right & by difficult terrain on their left. The Gods were doing bugger all - the Germans kept saving, then unpinning.

But while the Germans seemed well on top, they just couldn't put the Ivans away. Every German counterattack was met with a flurry of 5 & 6's in a counterassault inflicting casualties the Germans couldn't afford to lose, while the Strelkovy just kept on absorbing casualties down to literally the last man. The Gods finally started doing some damage - getting the SPAA & a Pak40. Steve dropped the Hortisses out of ambush to help the Grenadiers & the Cobras got one of them. The Honeys finally made a rush forward and overwhelmed the lone Pak as the last Strelkovy team passed a Last Survivor roll to keep the Ivans in the game (HQ gone, 2 plats lost, 1 last survivor & 2 plats left). The Honeys took the objective from the last Grenadiers as the Gods got the last Hortisse. The MEs wouldn't come & German artillery couldn't kill the Honeys fast enough on their own, so the Russians won a costly victory.

The Russians lost all but 1 team of infantry and 5 of 10 tanks. The Germans lost all but HQ, 3 command teams, 1 75 & their 105 battery.

Camp Cromwell Thursday 02/11/06

SteveJ's Grenadiers v. Jim's Strelkovy in 2000 pts FFA.

Jim turned up for battle well primed with Mansfield Builder's beer. As a result he was well placed to command Russians.
Russians: 2 Strelkovy (3 plats), HMG, A/Tank, 5 T34, 4 SU122, 3 KVs, Sturmos.
Germans: 3 Grenadiers, 105s, 75 IG, 2 Hornisse, 3 SPAA, HMGs, Stukas.
Strelkovy charged forward on both flanks while the tanks engaged the anti-tank guns in the centre. The T34's died, but so did the Pak40s while 3 SU122s & the 3 KVs survived. But before the Russian armour could do much more, the Infantry decided the battle. On the left the Ivans were stopped by a storm of fire. But on the right, the other Strelkovy platoon had better support from A/tank guns & HMGs (and bad digging in dice) and took the objective. The Hornisse's weren't game to counterattack & the Ivans survived artillery fire & a weak infantry counterattack to hold the objective & win the battle. It seems beer works as well as Vodka.
In Jim's hands the Sturmovics were useless - either they didn't come or they got shot down. The Stukas did a bit more, but didn't come when they were really needed.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

The Battle of Naples

Lombard cavalry horde (Nick) vs Byzantine (Cameron) mixed army meet on the northern Italian plains. Tactica rules

The report from Byzantium

All hail the Imperial Emperor! I, Commander Cameron of the XI Byzantium Legion bring bad tidings to your court.

On the day of our good Lord’s Levant feast I met the malodorous Lombards in Northern Italy and it is my sad duty to report that your many fine legions under my command have been lost on the field of battle. I have barely escaped with my own life and was forced to put my entire honour guard to the sword in order to obtain the fresh horses I needed. The Lombard pursuit was long and fierce.

What went wrong you may well ask? How could it come to this sorry state of affairs? A mighty Byzantium army crushed by a rabble of steppe slum-dwelling horse humpers? Woeful and lamentable is the tale I have come to tell.

The plains of the battlefield were, as plains are sire, flat. Very flat. So flat that nary a rock or tree were to be had anyway. In short, oh great emperor, there was nary a place to poo in peace. Yes, my lord, public poo’ing throughout. Great was our shame.

Given that our army was a mixed force of cavalry and infantry, as all good armies should be, and that the perfidious Lombards were entirely horse mounted I made certain dispositions. As is proper for a Byzantium General. And am I not your favourite nephew married to your favourite daughter? Remember this, oh Great One, as you read my tale of misfortune.

All infantry and my best cavalry units were instructed to form a short defensive line in the far left corner of the battlefield. Have you seen a hedgehog, my Emperor? Like the hedgehog we hunkered down and pricked up. The hedgehog is wise in the ways of the world is he not? Ask your most unloved courtier, my Lord, to take a kick at the nearest hedgehog and observe who wins.

Additionally, I positioned cavalry units on both extremes of the battlefield with orders to ride like the wind and gallop around the flanks of the enemy as he approaches. My plan, oh mighty Emperor, was for the Lombards to impale themselves on our hedgehog of spears while our flanking cavalry hit them in the rear.

When I asked for guidance from the fire-eating Rostafarian sorcereress that accompanies your every army she told me it was indeed a fine plan. And so I believe it was my Emperor. I also spoke to your god and given that he didn’t call back I can only presume that he also approved. Of course I sacrificed ten oxen and a chook the night before and, according to your standing instructions, had unnatural intercourse with them all before they were slaughtered in order to appease the gods of war.

Perhaps, oh great one, this last deed could be deleted from your wise counsel that precedes every battle? Are all your generals instructed thus? One of the ox bit me and I seriously doubt if I will be ever be able to reproduce and spread the seed of military greatness onto another generation.

Here-in Lord, lie our dispositions.

Battle was joined and it immediately became apparent the weakness of my plan. I had miscalculated my Emperor, not realising that the battlefield wasn’t large enough to permit flanking manoeuvres.

My vision may have been blurred somewhat from the previous night’s ‘celebrations’ and I was having trouble sitting straight in the saddle. Or standing. Or sitting. Or anything. The ox my lord…

Here is how things developed.

You can clearly see, oh great one, my cavalry on either flank attempting to encircle the Lombard foe. A man as wise as yourself could also note the hedgehog being formed in the left corner with our skirmishers doing a mighty job delaying the enemy while our main body moved into their assigned positions.

The Lombards peeled of three units of cavalry to block our right flankers and sent hordes of skirmishers to block our left flank attempt. Their remaining cavalry advanced to the centre and then halted to await developments.

Alas both our left and right flanking attempts, with insufficient space to swing wide, were quickly trapped and all but eliminated. Only a remnant of the light cavalry on the left managed to break clear and take out one unit of Lombard cavalry before themselves being destroyed. They fought like lions however and went down to the last man.

From this point onwards it was all, as they say in Byzantium, Bad, bad, bad. The Lombards regrouped and then thundered in on our hedgehog. Unfortunately their numbers were too great and we were overwhelmed in short order. A terrible day for all concerned.

So thus it came to pass, my Emperor, that your mighty legions, under my command, lost the battle. I beg your forgiveness and can only say that I have learned from my mistakes and will do better next time.

Do not forget your favourite daughter, my lord. She is wilful and needs a strong husband. And have I not suffered enough already?

Commander Cameron