Sunday, 17 June 2012

FoW: Operation Sea Lion - Dust Up

Thursday night saw me take a trip over to Dave's for another Operation Sea Lion battle. It was a 1500pt game between my Soviets and his Panzerspähkompanie. My force was the usual:

Guards Heavy Tank Regiment - Fearless Trained
Gvardeyskiy Tyazhelyy Tankovy Polk HQ - 1 KV-85
Gvardeyskiy Tyazhelyy Tankovy Company - 5 KV-85
Gvardeyskiy Tyazhelyy Tankovy Company - 5 KV-85
Priority Air Support - Il-2 Shturmovik

While Dave took:

Panzerspähkompanie - Confident Veteran
HQ - 1 Sd Kfz 234/2 Puma
Panzerspah Plt - 3 Sd Kfz 234/2 Puma
Panzerspah Plt - 3 Sd Kfz 234/2 Puma
Panzerspah Plt - 3 Sd Kfz 234/2 Puma
Heavy Tank Plt - 3 Tiger 1E
Motorised Artillery Battery - 4 10.5cm leFH18/40
AA Plt - 3 Sd Kfz 7/2

We rolled for mission and got Dust Up, with me going first. The terrain was set up as shown below.

The initial layout

The view from Dave's quadrant.

We both had delayed reserves so I started with five KV's and the CiC on the table while Dave went with his artillery, AA and Tigers on table.

My starting position

Dave's starting position

I'd originally planned to attack the objective between the river and the ruin but Dave's Tigers had it covered. So I decided to threaten the village and wait for my reinforcements. On my turn I moved up two of the KV's along the road to the village.

Dave surprised me by advancing his Tigers. I was expecting him to hold with them and wait for his Pumas to arrive. No one had LoS so no shooting this turn.

I start a cautious advance towards the village

Turn two lifted the restrictions on air support so I called in my Sturmis onto his artillery. I stayed where I was everywhere else as i waited to see what Dave would do with his Tigers. My Sturmis survived the AA fire and knocked out a gun.

Sturmis attack.

Dave continued his advance with his Tigers and repositioned his AA. His artillery ranged in on one of my KV's but did no damage, a trend that was to continue throughout the game.

I'm going to have to move next go as he's ranged in.

The repositioned AA now has better coverage on the guns

Turn three saw my Sturmis fail to arrive for a change I also failed to get any reserves. Elsewhere I moved  two KV's towards the village. They then took pot shots at the artillery observer in a house by the ford but missed.

Dave got his reserves and three Pumas arrived and immediately took cover behind a house ready to threaten one of the objectives. The Tigers shot but did no damage.

The Pumas hope that the Tigers will knock out the KV covering the objective.

My slow advance on the village continues. I'm being very
careful not to expose my tanks to his Tigers.

Turn four and I get my reserves. Sadly being slow they plod towards the objective at mere 8" a turn. Elsewhere I move my CiC into position to get a shot at the Pumas and the KV's near the ford manoeuvre to get a shot at the Tigers. Sadly I can't make any firepower rolls and do no damage to either the Pumas or the Tigers. My Sturmis attack the artillery again but miss.

Dave makes him reserves roll again and three more Pumas arrive. They zoom 16" forward to threaten the rear of my CiC's KV. The Tigers reposition to engage the KV's near the ford and knock one out in the shooting phase. Dave throws caution to the winds and does a double move with the Pumas that came on last turn that puts them next to the far objective. That's a nasty surprise for me. I didn't expect a 32" move and if I don't get rid of them next turn it's game over. The Pumas threatening my CiC rain shells off his armour but can't penetrate.

The Pumas race forward to grab the objective.

The skirmish at the ford hots up

My reserve KV's plod towards the objective in the far wood

Turn five and time for the Sturmi's to save the day. Sure enough they arrive and position for an attack. This lightning dash forces a rethink and the KV's reposition. My reserve KV's advance and manage to knock out two more guns with some good long range shooting. My CiC fires on the Pumas threatening him but can only bail one of them. But the main event is the air attack I roll the dice and it's two kills and a bail so I live to fight another turn. The remaining Puma makes it's motivation roll so it's not over yet.

Dave again makes his reserve roll and yet more Pumas arrive. But he fails in his remount attempts. The newly arrived Pumas also move up threaten the CiC. The Pumas that were near the CiC race forward to grab the objective. His shooting does no damage again.

The aftermath of the Sturmi's attack
The reserve Kv's advance but are 2 to 3 turns away
from threatening the objective.

If my Sturmi's can't clear out these Pumas it's game over.

Turn six and I call in the Sturmi's successfully but they can't range in on the Pumas. As I have nothing nearby which could knock out the Pumas I concede.

Dave played this one really well, using his superior numbers and mobility to catch me out. At the start of the game I knew I had to stay near the objectives to protect them but I couldn't resist moving forward to attack and that ultimately cost me the game. Another win for the Axis forces and my third loss in a row. Just as well Stalin's not in England or I'd be getting my pistol handed to me!

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