05 April 2012

North Africa campaign turn 3 - Libyan front

This week the campaign escalated to 750points per player. But what also happened was that we only had 1 allied player (Patrik) and 4 axis players showing up today. So what we did was to pick a single region on the campaign map - Libya - and ran a 4vs1 battle with Patrik playing both US Airborne and Colonial forces against 4x 750 pts Axis armies.

The Axis ran a Panzer company (me, though I would not call it a company yet), Italian tank company, Italian and German paratroopers. The gaming area was made out of six 2'x4' sections so it was quite big - a nice change from the cramped 4x4 or 4x6 format often used in this game. A small town in the middle, the Allies defending in "Fighting Withdrawal" with 1 additional objective due to the size of the game.

Now to the funny part, Patrik had more artillery and AT guns than the Axis had tanks. And pretty much every ATgun was either auto penetrating or required a 5+ armor save if we were hit. And he had enough AT/artillery platoons to cover the entire stretch of his deployment - there was not a snowballs chance in hell that we would be able to take any objective if we split up. If we focused all our efforts on one flank he would have a nice target practice with our advancing forces. He also had AT guns and Airborne in Ambush so the Axis chance of success on the outset of the battle was very slim.

German and Italian tanks grouped on the far left, and the two Axis airborne companies grouped in the middle started moving forward. The main target was a wheat field which was packed with infantry defenders - and which we all knew would be used to deploy troops in Ambush. This location also held one of the objectives that had a "reasonable" chance of being captured by the Axis compared to all the rest which were in a crossfire of Allied artillery guns. The Axis tanks moved up, and true enough, the Allies show up and pretty much fuck everything up with artillery guns, infantry Bazooka teams, multiple artillery templates and wipe out the German Pz III tanks (company commander Josef Rettemeier left the battle in a hurry as the only guy left in a functional PzIII). Hilarious as it was the Italian tanks were only bailed and shrugged that off and kept advancing and assaulting the Allies in the fields. That went as you would expect with a couple of tanks against several infantry platoons and AT guns and .50 cal Machineguns. Italian tanks were torn to pieces. Panzer II's made a pathetic attempt affect the outcome, failed to hit anyone before charging in and got themselves destroyed in defensive fire. The second Italian tank platoon was reduced to shrapnel by artillery and enemy infantry and the Axis infantry was hammered without mercy by artillery and small arms fire.

It was just absurd and pretty much impossible for the Axis to achieve anything against that number of enemy guns. We also had air support which was constantly shot down, in return we got bombed on two occasions by allied air support instead. I think at the end of the battle, we had destroyed 1 platoon of AT guns, and reduced 1 platoon of infantry to 1 stand. In return we lost 4 platoons of tanks, and a heap of paratroopers.

The battle resulted in the Allies successfully defending Libya against the Axis attack. Firestorm troops were placed on Crete which I suspect will see heavy fighting next time we play a campaign battle. The campaign will take a break over the Easter, and the week after that we have the North Africa mega battle so I don't know if there will be any campaign games for the next couple of weeks.

I also figured I would shed some light on the "rules" for this campaign, the whole North Africa campaign is based on the "Firestorm rules".

Each turn you have the Planning phase where players roll for initiative then choose sectors to attack according to their initiative roll. The battle phase where you fight the battle. And lastly the Strategic phase where you place firestorm troops or supply tokens on the map. Supply is important if you fight in areas away from the coastline, like deep desert areas. Troops are affected by attrition and have to roll on a table to check the effect and you mainly have bad stuff happening to your company like reduced number of points to fight with and things like that.

We also have a historical restriction on specific troops, the campaign spans 10 months starting with January 1942. As time goes by more stuff gets available for both sides. Rare units like Tiger tanks, US armor reinforcements and more regular "medium-heavy" tanks increase in number. The number of units you can add as a Firestorm troop in a specific battle is also limited.

In order to secure towns you have to attack with at least 2 players at the same time. If you attack with a single army you won't be able to secure the area on the map. This is mainly to make the fights for vital victory point locations on the map a bit larger in scope and to convey a feeling of importance in the operations.

In order to secure islands you have to either have a supply line and port access in your home area to the area you are going to attack - or make a airborne landing. If for instance one side has placed firestorm troops in a sector which gets captured by the enemy, all those firestorm troops are considered lost/destroyed.

The Axis guys had captured Malta last week after I went home. So the allies don’t have a single region behind Axis lines anymore. That was basically the only importance of Malta. The allies also lost some firestorm troops once the island was captured.



  2. Seriously impressive game...

  3. What does the smoke marker with "Hilfe" on it represent? Some Germans who are seriously low on morale?

  4. That is one of the objective markers.
    Patrik and Thomas have a bunch of objectives with a comedic touch. Thomas has an objective with French tank crews taking a picnic under a tree LOL!

  5. "Drinking some wine, eating some cheese"
    Brilliant fun! Can you get us a picture of that one?

  6. Yep, just follow this link http://i56.photobucket.com/albums/g183/Anatoli_2006/15mm%20battle%20reports/SAM_8722.jpg?t=1333631605

  7. Coooool!
    T(h)anks, we will be making something similar for sure.

  8. Excellent pictures and report, love the smoke markers!!

  9. that looks like an awesome game! im looking forward to get in on the action soon. tally ho!


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