Alan has been working on the modern forces for his imagination of New Byzantium (see his blog here: http://novobyzantium.blogspot.co.uk/ ) and so it was only right that I used my Alt-History Poles as his first opposition (I’m sure that his batrep will be a lot more interesting as mine so will be well worth checking out his blog).
It was a classic meeting engagement of a village/crossroads set up with us dicing for where we would be coming on table. What made this game interesting was that we had decided to bring on our units sequentially starting with the recon units and adding more battalions only when we had rolled enough pips during the command phase (see my house rules) so it wasn’t the usual tank battle club night games can be. Also it was useful to see how ‘my’ TOE for the Poles would do in ‘combat’ conditions and used by myself.
My initial forces were a slightly reduced Divisional Cavalry Regiment of 2 AML-90/60 companies, 1 Fox company and 1 M3 Panhard mounted infantry company Alan had a light force too consisting of AML-90’s, jeep mounted ATGM and recon jeeps with truck mounted infantry in support.
Luckily I managed to win the initiative and decided to barrel the Fox coy up the road to secure the village with the infantry coy following up. The two AML coys would move to either side, those on the left to take a low ridge across the lateral road those on the right the hedgeline by the road there.
Alan then moved up to the Y-junction with some jeep johnnies and pushed some units towards the woods on my right and round the hedges to the left heading towards the ridge my AML’s were going for. Alan won the initiative next and with the pips that he received decided to call in a free barrage on the village to suppress my guys there he then drew first blood as one of his jeep mounted ATGM took out a Fox. I managed to get some payback with the Fox to the left ko’ing the accompanying jeep mounted infantry platoon whilst moving my infantry company up to occupy the village.
Alan managed to get to the ridge on the left first but luckily for me it was only with a recon jeep platoon which sensibly fell back before the advancing armoured cars – although he did gamely have a pop with his 12.7mm HMG! However as soon as I moved up to the ridgeline I lost the lead platoon to some dead-eye shooting from an ATGM fired from the woods to the front of the ridge which Alan had put one of his infantry coys (to be fair he had the devils own luck with his dice rolls all evening, I didn’t!).
In the village Alan was doing great with his artillery, using the pips he won during initiative to bring in artillery that kept my infantry supressed which meant that my Milan fire was largely ineffective, I think they managed to only take out 1 AML all game. The remainder of the Fox company succumbed to more ATGM fire from Alan’s chaps in the wood to the right – I had absolutely appalling luck all game trying to bring in artillery on these, only managing to supress them once all game – and from the one by the Y-junction.
Alan used a 4 pip initiative win to bring on a reserve battalion and diced up a T-55 battalion which made things potentially dicey for me as the only thing that could really do any damage on my side was the single Milan launcher with my infantry, however I won back the initiative the next go (I believe the first time since the start of the game) and managed to get enough pips to release my own reserves, rolling up an Armoured battalion.
Sadly we hade run out of time by the time we had moved the tanks up to the village, although not before my tanks on the left had managed to brew up a T-55 and Alan’s crack-shot ATGM chaps over on the right had caused a couple of QC tests on the tanks on the road.
I think my better tanks would have swayed things my way if we had gone on and I’d have secured the village but it was an interesting battle anyway having only light forces on table for most of it gave a good game. One thing that did come up during the game was the seeming ineffectiveness of MRL’s in the rules – they have a very low fire value, maybe a question for the yahoo group there? Anyway it looks as if we will be carrying on with some more battles with these protagonists so will look forwards to that (as long as Alan changes dice next time!!).
Here’s some pictures of a couple of other games that caught my eye on Monday, first up a AWI game using ‘British Grenadier’ played by Ian, Des and Martin followed by Mac’s game with new chap Ollie (?) of ‘Bolt Action’ using his lovely home made buildings.