Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Maharajah 09 2nd Semi Final 28/12/09

Nick's US Armour v. Mark's Fucilieri
2000 pts Breakthrough, Nick attacking.

Nick adopted the same tactics as against Jim's Bersalglieri in his Quarter Final.  Only his priests & Recon were on the table at the start as he relied on his flanking force to come on in good time.

The first rounds went to the Italians.  The Semos came on from reserve on turn 1 and pounced on the Priests, knocking the platoon out that turn (note burning Priests next to Nick in the pic).  The USAF was intercepted by the Picchiatello for the 1st 3 turns.

But that was the high water mark for the Ities.  When the USAF finally got thru they took out an 88.  Then the 1st Sherman platoon came on with HQ & zapped the other one.   Mark had failed to set up an adequate reception committee for the US reserves.  To save the game he had to blast the Shermans off the objective with artillery & airpower.  They failed to do so & the game ended on turn 6 with light casualties to both sides.

The Grand Final will be between Nick's Panzers & Leigh's Death or Glory Boys.
(As both SF winners were Allied, they diced off to see who would change sides.)

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Nick & Jim in Launceston

Jim was up in Launceston for work, and amazingly enough he just happened to be up there for games night.

There we 45 people at the club. Three games of FOW, plus as many players just chatting. And the usual heaps of fantasy / sci-fi games.

Game 1 - Nick (US infantry) vs Darren(German tanks). Darrens tanks were advancing mercilessly -- but then an AT gun ambush knocked out all but one of his tanks. Victory to Nick.

Game 2 - Nick R (British infantry) vs Jim (Italian parachutists). Jim had to attack, but had nothing to take out the British Churchills. And he rolled an inordinant number of '1's. Victory to Nick R

Game 3 - A beautifull big push. When we left the tanks had broken through the Russian infantry. But there was a lot left to go.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Maharajah 2009 1st Semi Final

Leigh's Death or Glory Boys v. Byron's Panzerspah
2,000pts Encounter Mission on 8x6 table

Byron deployed Pioneers on his right, 3MkIIIs right of centre, 6 Neblewerfers in the centre, 3/75mm ACs & 3 Pak40s on the left.
Leight put his 25pdrs on his left, with infantry in front in the woods on his flank, AA in centre & his Lees on his right centre & his Grant HQ on the far right.

Leigh began with an advance on his right. He got rid of the Paks - mostly with artillery fire, but the Lees were destroyed by the Paks & Panzers. The Grants were advancing on the undefended objective on the mountain plateau on the German left, but 4 Pak40s arrived in the right place to defend the mountain top & the Grants promptly fell back.

The British reserevs came on faster than the Germans. The Brit left was strengthened by bren carriers & Valentines while more Valentines & bren carriers plus Crusaders advanced in the centre. In the centre there was a fair bit of actuon between Neblewerfers, carriers, armoured cars & tanks, but the battle was decided on the German right. The Germans attacked thru the scrub with 2 Pioneer platoons, but somehow the single Brit rifle platoon beat one, then died destroying the other. German armoured cars slowly advanced on the objective through the woods & were destroyed while the Panzers tried to cross the river to take on the Valentines before the tanks on the Brit right could intervene. 2MkIIIs bogged & stayed that way while Valentines moved up into close range from both sides & destroyed them. The Germasn struggled on for a little longer, but the battle was lost with the MkIIIs.

Byron had a pretty sound plan - to attack though the scrub with 2 infantry v. 1, but a minor tactical error compounded by bad dice let the Brits win that fight against the odds. The MkIII's could have saved the day, but bad bogging rolls hung them out to dry.

Nick & Mark with fight the other Semi Final between Xmas & New Year to decide who fights Leigh in the Grand Final.

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Maharajah 09 4th Quarter Final

Jim's Fucilieri v. Nick's US Armour

2000 pts Breakthrough Mission in Tunisia, US attacking.
Fought at Nick's with Joe & Leigh umpiring (Byron did the map).

With both sides having armour Attacker/Defender had to be diced for.  Both sides wanted to attack because the defender can only have 1 motorised platoon on the table at the start.  Nick was very relieved to win the roll as defending would have hurt him the most as his army was entirely motorised whereas the Ities had 4 non-motorised platoons.

The Ities deployed Bersaliglieri in the centre, 90mm AA on their right (in the cover of a light wood with a geat field of fire over the US deployment zone),  100mm howitzers on the left, Semos behind the Beraglieri & their 75mm artillery as an anti-tank screen on the other quarter of the table.

It looked a good deployment, but Nick rather trumped it by only putting his Priests & recon on the table & putting his 2 Sherman (x4) platoons, Honeys (5), SP mortars & command (2 Sherms) in flank attack.  He ran a risk of then not showing up in time, but the odds were on his side.

In the early turns not a lot happened as both side's reserve platoons were a bit slow showing up.  The Bersaglieri& Semos moved up to a position to defend the objectives.  The USAF showed up a lot but didn't do much.  The Priests & planes tried to nail the 90mm AA, but just couldn't.  Nick tried to sneak his Recon around the right flank, but the 75's popped the jeeps and an M14 platoon came on at the right time & place to fnish them off.

On turn 5 both Sherman platoons came on together with command - 10 Shermans & suddenly it looked awfully bleak for the Ities as their tin cans started to melt away.  But they struck back.  The 75's dropped smoke to keep the Shermans on the move & reduce their firepower, as well as to draw them forward into AA range.  One 90mm AA got in one volley thru the gap in the olive groves & popped 3 Shermans before the Priests & planes finally got it, the M14s & Semos converging from 2 directions got some side shots & the 100mm howitzers pounded them.  Half the Shermans were destroyed in one turn.

The Honeys came on & destroyed an M14 platoon but a vicious 100mm howiter bombardment scared the survivors away.  The Armoured Mortars came on, tried to hide behind the monastary, but were immediately destroyed by the L6's of doom. 

The Honeys attacked the 75s, but were beaten off, then both platoons sides failed morale. 

Both sides lost more tanks in the shirtfight in the corner & were teetering on the verge of army morale tests.  The 3 surviving Shermans were cowering in the corner of the table among the burning tanks but they were still the most powerful pieces on the table.  The Ities just needed to get another bail to force a platoon morale check & automatic army morale failure (no hq left).  But they just couldn't get it.  Meanwhile, while the Shermans ground the Ities down.  The Itie CIC still lived having transferred to the last L6 (now hiding behind the monastary saying Hail Marys).  He passed one army morale test, but failed the next to give Nick a hard fought victory.

This was a ripper of a wargame between two well matched veterans.  The game balance swung from one side to the other several times - the sort of game that makes us love FOW warts & all.  In the end the Ities just couldn't quite nail it. 

Nick's US Armour  now meets Mark's Fucilieri in one Semi Final while Byron's Spahpanzers meet Leigh's Death or Glory Boys in the other one.

Pic 1 is from behind the Itie left.  The objectives are in the open ground on the left.  The Priests are in the far RH corner.  The US Recon are on the far table edge.  The M14's bushwacked them as they slipped around the ridge on the left table edge.  The US flanking force cames in on the LH corner. The other Ities reserves come on in the closest corner.

In Pic 2 Nick is so carefully deploying his 10 Shermans.

In Pic 3, half the Shermans are under smoke while the rest have copped a pounding.  The Honeys have just come on & are about to smash the M14s on the table edge, but they make a nice target for the howitzers & run away along the table edge before taking on the 75s.

Pic 4 is at the end - just 3 Shermans & 1 L6 have survived the armoured carnage.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Nick in Launceston

Club meet was packed -- possibly due to rain. Or maybe a pre-Christmas rush. Only two historical games -- Nick R umpired a game for two younger players, and Nick B played Aggro.

Flames of War -- Nick B (US Infantry) vs Aggro (German Panzers), 1500 pts, fighting withdrawal.

Aggro charged foward. Nick B dropped M10 tank destroyers and they lived up to their name -- scratch one platoon. Then next turn Nick dropped a 57mm AT gun ambush and they destroyed the other panzer platoon. Aggro was left with one tiger and some artillery. But the tiger proved indestructible. It slowly moved foward, crushing the artillery observer and the lone infantry with a bazooka that threatened it, and also destroying the M10's. But in the end, at the end of turn 8 (end of the game), while the tiger had got to the objective it was still contested by US infantry. So a win to Nick

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Camp Cromwell 01/12/09

Joe's Scotts v. Jim English
Medieval battle using Camp Cromwell Rules

Joe put his horse on his right, highlanders in the centre, billmen with bow skirmishers in the big gap between, then spearmen & men at arms on his left.  He generally deployed his troops in double rank in 8 stand units.

Jim deployed archers on the ridge on his left, knights on their right, men at arms behind the knights, bills behind the men at arms & 2 small knight units behind the archers left flank.  All the English units were in a single rank of stands.

Both sides had only one 3 dice general to reflect poor Medieval command.  It didn't affect Joe though, all his units activated on the first turn.  The English in contrast threw 3 scorpions in the first turn & 2 in the second.  Thus the Scots took the battle to the English.  The pic is taken behind the English right as the armies clash.

On the left the English did well from the start.  The bowmen blew the skirmishers away in 2 volleys leaving the bills outnumbered, exposed & doomed.  The front unit of the Scott's cavalry was beaten by a one-two punch from the English knights and routed back through the second unit which immediately joined it in flight.

In the centre, the highlanders did well to hold the knights for a long time.  Their second line shuffled sideways then charged the bows that came off the hill to meet them.  Hot shooting weakened the highlanders & they lost the ensuing combat.  The unit fighting the knights then broke as well.

On their left the Scotts did better.  Late activation prevented the English knights choosing their target & they hit both the spears & men at arms at once.  Fighting 2 big units at once was too much & they broke.  The Scott's pusuit took out some men at arms & bills, but it wasn't enough to make up for the losses elsewhere.

Joe put up a brave fight, charging forward in true Scottish fashion, but the English general had too much experience & exploited his mistakes ruthlessly despite bad activation dice.