So we left it last week with the situation thus: Terry had unsuccessfully assaulted Klinkerhoff and losing just over a company’s worth of infantry and APC’s and Jamie had secured the crossroads with his armoured cars for a couple of losses whilst taking out a complete Austrian PanzerGrenadier company.
I actually won the initiative on this weeks first go but allowed the Poles to go first as I didn’t need to move owt and wanted them to trigger my overwatch fire where necessary. Over on the right Terry started to manoeuvre the remainder of his Mechanised Infantry Regiment to the right of the town whilst Jamie seemed to have thrown off his caution of last week and pushed his force forward with the armd cars pushing along the road and to the left of it – he also moved his remaining two tanks from the hedge line to the right of the crossroads up to the hedge line at the top of the square enclosure. This proved a costly decision as they ran smack into 2 platoons of Landwehr on the other side of the hedge and in the following close assault they suffered 1 ko and 1 QC failure – ouch! (those Miniman LAW’s again, they are a beast!). Jamie did get some payback as an AML took out one of the Landwehr during their fire phase, but still not a great return. Over on the right an AT gun opened fire and destroyed a Polish Fox platoon that Terry had sent scouting ahead.
The second turn saw some more Anti-Tank Guns pop into action as the Poles ground forward (I had won the initiative again but still allowed them 1st move). The left hand gun platoon scored a ko against another AML whilst the Bill ATGM armed platoon on the hill to the left took out another. Terry was still moving round the flank of the town whilst avoiding getting within MAW range. The brave hedge defenders took some 90mm fire from the AML’s and failed their QC which caused a morale check on the remaining platoon – they weren’t made of the same stuff as their kameraden however and promptly legged it, all that was between the Poles and the end of the valley now was a company of Anti-Tank guns, I really needed to roll up my Panzer Btln now.
I managed to hang onto the initiative (but didn’t manage to get enough pips to activate my reserves) and elected to go first, I needed to get some fire onto the Poles before they could call artillery on my ATG’s to supress them. I only managed to get rid of another AML with my left hand gun due to a QC, whilst my ATGM on the hill missed completely. Bugger! The Polish gunners then started to lay barrages on me – they got nearly all the artillery they could this go – supressing my guns and causing the PzrGren platoon on the hill to bug out (a 6 for a QC needed and they got it, then I failed – damned bad luck I say!).
Jamie did seem to become very wary of the hill over on the left as well as the thinness of the armour of his Armd Cars and moved them back up towards the crossroads and away from the ATG too. Over on the right Terry launched an Infantry company towards the ridge of the right hand hills and I let rip with my waiting Kurassier company – result, 2 destroyed Grizzly’s and 1 infantry platoon ko’d, however I suffered 1 platoon lost due to return fire from his Vickers tanks.
I won initiative again by 2 pips – so now I had a decision to make, release the Panzer Btln waiting in Reserve or use it for a guaranteed Btlns worth of Artillery – I chose the latter. Why? Well to be brutally honest it would have ruined the game, 16 stands of M60a3’s turning up would’ve been game over for the Poles as they had failed to release their own Armoured reserve and it’d be like shooting fish in a barrel. So I laid smoke to prevent the Vickers from having another go at me and bugged out the remaining Kurassiers on the right flank. In the centre my left hand ATG had succumbed to AML fire (failed a QC) whilst my other 2 were kept supressed by Artillery. Jamie laid down smoke to mask the left hand hill and edged forward down the centre, whilst Terry made a move on the right hand ridge line just vacated by my tank destroyers with some infantry and his mighty Ferret/Swingfire whilst positioning himself for another assault on Klinkerhoff.
The next move didn’t have much going on, I won the initiative again and let the Poles go first as there wasn’t much I needed to do and I felt sort of ‘safe’ doing so – more artillery fell on my ATG’s one being surpressed with the other being knocked out, whilst Jamie edged forwards. However his smoke had only partially obscured the view of the Kurassier company on the left hill and they opened up in overwatch fire, knocking out another AML. Terry started to systematically target the infantry trapped in Klinkerhoff with both Artillery and direct fire from the Tanks, which caused suppression. I decided then that I’d call the game informing my opponents that I had already withdrawn the infantry from the left hand hill, and was willing to sacrifice the plucky defenders of Klinkerhoff – their CO was under instructions to either sell themselves dearly or chuck it in and ‘hande hoch’ if they wanted to!
Although my Kurassiers would’ve made minced meat of their Armd Cars they would have been very vulnerable once Terry had his Swingfire ready on the hill he’d just taken (plus he still had 3 tank stands left), also if they had gotten to activate their reserve it’d be no contest so I reckoned I’d given them a bloody enough nose why not pull back with what I had remaining and maybe come back in a counter attack……….?
The guys said that they enjoyed the game, as Terry said it made a nice change to not have tons of tanks either side (although we do love those sorts of bashes!) and that it was a good tactical challenge which is what I was aiming for so that pleased me no end. I learned a lot about putting on a game and know how I would change a few things if I was to do it again, also I was quietly chuffed when a few guys at the club commented on how much they liked the KO markers I made, and wanted to know how I did them – which was nice!
I hope you enjoyed the write up too, please leave a comment if you have any suggestions to improve them or hit the like button! Lastly a few photo’s of the table at the end.