Friday, September 23, 2011

WWII Ardennes - but not 1944

This week I did not go to the SESWC. Colin Jack was stuck at home so Dave O'Brien and I visited Colin for a game and a meal. Colin put together a 28mm WWII game using Rules of Engagement - set in the Ardennes - but not in 1944 - this was an early war game pitting Belgian troops against a German column of 7th Panzer Division advancing to the Meuse.

Vive la Belgique - Sd222 explodes under 25mm fire
The Setup
The game was fought along a 8ft by 5ft table. The German column commanded by Erwin Rommel (Colin and Dave) had to traverse the length of the table and exit from the other side. The terrain was a single narrow road flanked by heavily wooded hills. In this type of terrain the vehicles could not operate of the road. Any vehicle that broke down or was knocked out had to be pushed of the road. The Germans had 3 PZ38T tanks, a lorried infantry platoon, a Sd222 armoured car and a Kfz13 command vehicle. The Belgians had an understrength infantry platoon and their heavy equipment comprised a 25mm ATG, a hotchkiss MMG, a mortar and a T15 tank!

German column backed up behind burning SD222
How the game played
The Germans drove down the single road lead by their Sd222 armoured car. As it rounded a bend it was destroyed by a well placed shot from the 25mm ATG. This was the high point for the Belgians. As the first German infantry deployed from their truck they came under very ineffective fire from a section of Chasseurs Ardenais. Heavy fire from the surprised Germans forced the shaken Chasseurs to flee deeper into the forest.

Chasseurs surprise German infantry....
A PZ38T pushed the Sd222 of the road and engaged by the 25mm ATG in a duel. It was joined by a 2nd PZ38T and they and Rommel in his command car overwhelmed the ATG and its supporting MG with a hail of MG fire. The 2nd Belgian infantry squad had now ambushed more German infantry who charged and wiped out the Belgians. The road to the Meuse now seemed open to the Germans but as they rounded a final bend they came under fire from the Belgian T15 tank. Armed with a HMG the T15 could only damage the tracks of the the PZ38Ts but it put up a galant fight - the crew bailed out and then remounted their tank - only for them to be forced to bail out again. At this point a PZ38T pushed the unmanned T15 into the ditch! I commanded the Belgians and my dicing for shooting was remarkably poor - the mortar proved completely ineffective.
Massed German armour closes on the vital ATG
Now that we have worked out how the hiding rules work and are doing firing correctly the game play works better. I like ROE but I am still not completely sure about the artillery rules.
Galant T15 engages the German might

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