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"Counter Attack at Lingevres" - A BKC-II PAAR, 7 June 2013




 
#1

On 7 June Mark and Russ played a BKC-II game based around Mission 3 from the rulebook. I provided some of the kit and Terrain.

As a little bit of flavour, the terrain is derived from a map of the Lingevres area and therefore loosely represents the German counter attack that occurred later in the day after the British had occupied the village after their set piece attack which we have covered in other games.

Russ used elements from his newly painted Germans, while Mark used my British. Both players chose their forces from the Army lists in the rulebook.

Mark as defender had 1000 points of British, Russ, 1500 points of Germans. While the defender could not purchase any defences or artillery assets, Russ choose not to take any artillery assets. The terrain was set up on a 3 x 2 foot board.

The Game was to last 8 Turns.

Outright Victory would go to the force that cold break the opposing players force first, while a minor Victory would go to whatever force caused at least 25% casualties by the end of the game.



These are some photos following the progress of the game:

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Under the terms of the conditions of the mission, Russ as attacker could deploy using Mobile and Flank deployment. This he did, but on Turn 1 failed to bring on his units. This gave Mark a chance to adjust his disposition slightly in order to anticipate Russ' arrival.

Russ rolled successfully on Turn 2, and brought on his forces. Russ had split his battlegroup into two formations and decided to advance on two axis on either road leading to the town.

Some good shooting by Marks tanks secured some early victims. Undaunted, Russ kept up the pressure by continuing to advance, but began to suffer from PIAT and tank fire which stalled his progress.

Casualties began to notch up, as the Panzer Grenadiers tried to find cover and hit back. A couple of command blunders did not help. Mark, on the other hand, was having doubts over his deployment in that he had put his most powerful AT unit under the command of his weakest leader who was busy taking cover and therefore was not making his command presence felt.

This may have made a difference in more open terrain, but as Russ units were within initiative range this did not seem to unduely inhibit Marks opportunity to hit at the Germans and effectively halt the Panzer IV column.

Russ tried to give the Panzers some infantry support, but accurate fire from Vickers MGs in the Church combined with some accurate mortar fire weakened the German infantry and left the tanks stripped of infantry support after a couple of turns.

On the other axis of advance effective fire from the 75mm Sherman had suppressed the Panther and actually caused it to fall back. This led to a sudden crisis of confidence on this axis and a general withdrawal of the infantry.

By Turn 7 Russ had lost sufficient units to require a Breakpoint check at a severe penalty. The roll was asking to much and the German force broke in the face of stiff opposition from the British.

Another interesting game. Russ' bold approach was possibly a bit too bold, which exposed him to fire before he could really take a bite out of the British. However, Russ deserves credit for acting "in character" and pushing his attack as the scenario required, rather than sitting back and simply trying to outshoot his opponent. If there is any consolation the games outcome was very much in keeping with the result on the actual day.

It has been observed that in all the games we have had so far, that no attacker has succeeded in obtaining a victory. Buildings, and the cover they afford to a defending force are still challenging the players in developing tactics to overcome the advantages they confer in defence.

Nevertheless, the feeling is that there may well be a way to offset this, but our inexperience with the game thus far, may not have given us time to discover the "key" to unlock this. Defence will always be an easier option for a player, while attacking is always going to be a tough proposition as it requires the player to expose himself in moving forward. There is no doubt that if you cannot bring effective fire to suppress an opponent before moving from cover in this game, you will get punished.
Chris

"from mud, through blood to the green fields beyond..."
Brigadier General Hugh Elles

Blackadder: Am I jumping the gun, Baldrick, or are the words "I have a cunning plan" marching with ill-deserved confidence in the direction of this conversation?



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#2

The most important thing is; did everyone have fun? =D



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#3

(06-16-2013, 07:04 PM)Void Spinner Wrote: The most important thing is; did everyone have fun? =D

Bloody hell! You want to have FUN as well ???

Icon_eek Shit, completely forgot about that…
Chris

"from mud, through blood to the green fields beyond..."
Brigadier General Hugh Elles

Blackadder: Am I jumping the gun, Baldrick, or are the words "I have a cunning plan" marching with ill-deserved confidence in the direction of this conversation?



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#4

One thing 10mm lets you do really well as illustrated in the games I've played and here is a huge variety in battlefield types.

These ones are incredibly claustrophobic for NW Europe - but my first game was across a much more rural / open and larger battlfield for mid war Eastern Front.

Both have their appeal and different tactics present themselves.



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#5

I did have fun (as always!). Thanks for the kind coments Chris, especially about playing in Character! I don't like being God and being able to see everything on the board, so will always try to play it as if I am the commander on the ground who can't see past the hedge row in front of him!
To be honest tho, I don't think I would have played it any other way. Defenders are always a hard nut to crack and I'm still thinking of ways to overcome some of the challenges and that is why I'm loving this rule system so much! Maybe throwing some arty in might have helped, hind sight is a fantastic thing - Learning from your mistakes is even better!! (and I've made a few upto now with movements, troop choice and initiative fire which in this game can pretty much stop you in your tracks as witnessed in this game!)

Bring on the next one!!!



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#6

I also had fun although being in a building has its advantages Big Grin in this game I did move some infantry forwards in order to get a PIAT as close to the Germans as possible, as I realised my Firefly was in the opposite corner of the table to the arriving Panzer IVs. My Sherman was in the front facing off against the initial troop movement and later the panther. I was fortunate that it proved to have a well trained crew.

Not sure if my deployment of the firefly left it isolated because Russ saw it and moved on the other side or if it was just chance. It was however a logical location to cover the longest range in safety.

The singular advantage of having 'The Church' gave me long sight, so as soon as the germans fired I was able to hit back. The range of the HMG and mortars ensured there was no safe location for the infantry.

I'd put the Firefly and one company under the command of the CV7 officer and then failed to get them to do anything. A lesson to learn there. In fact over the 7 turns we played I failed to roll 7 or less 4 times, however when I did I manged two successful follow ons including a double 1. This was balanced by a blunder result of minus 2 on the CV of all commands. - Resulting in no command action on that turn or indeed the next. Rolleyes

The big saver for that command was initiative, which effectively allowed me to use those troops.

The other lesson I have learned is to try to hit a target with at least two separate command instructions as it is likely to increase the chance of suppressing and forcing the unit back.

Russ did have some bad luck which he is too polite to mention.
His initial command fails on turn one which stopped any troops moving on but showed me where they'd be coming on, allowing me to cover one of those locations with the sherman, resulting in me being able to take out the transport encouraging Russ to debuss. Another hit on an armoured car followed by a blunder on Russ' part which moved all troops backwards, in some cases off the table. Made Russ' already hard game rather difficult.

Units in buildings are still a nightmare, and I think always will be.
I do have some thoughts on how to remove them though.


Russ always plays in character refusing to use god's eye and I try to reciprocate, it makes for some interesting games, as ever Russ is a worthy and challenging opponent.



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#7

(06-17-2013, 09:19 AM)Dranask Wrote: Units in buildings are still a nightmare, and I think always will be.
I do have some thoughts on how to remove them though.


They always have been and as you say always will be - some systems don't seem to reflect - and nice to see that BKCII is living up to expectations



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#8

As a defender, the initiative firing is a real game winner. As the attacker, I can stop you in your tracks and ruin any plans you have for that move. AND THATS WHY I LOVE IT. Gone are the days of zombie like war gaming where you can react to anything (Gods eye view again!) to now, you really have to think about what you want to do with your figures!
I found most wargames are made up of single little actions (My squad of infantry against yours for a turn or until I make you break) to having to co-ordinate attacks. For example, Marks Sherman managed to stop a whole flank from moving, simply because I could't get enough weapons forward to deal with it. I might be able to inflict 2 or 3 hits, but it's not enough to take it out, where as in other systems, it would be dead which brings in the element of realism which most wargames lack IMHO.

Well sited troops and well executed plans will always win at the end of the day. In this game, you can't go around bumbling into units and killing them, you have to deal with them by either trying to pin them with weight of fire or you quickly end up being bogged down by even the smallest units, which I love.



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#9

Viz. Initiative fire:

Yes Russ, me and Edward fell foul of Mark's defence because we completely failed to use initiative fire - which could have pinned some of his troops and made it easier to advance!

The -1 command penalty it gives is a good way of suggesting that troops might be not following orders properly too.



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#10

Gentlemen, great feedback. I've very much enjoyed reading your comments and taking in your perspectives. Makes the time to post the report worthwhile and is just the sort of thing to encourage more games.
Chris

"from mud, through blood to the green fields beyond..."
Brigadier General Hugh Elles

Blackadder: Am I jumping the gun, Baldrick, or are the words "I have a cunning plan" marching with ill-deserved confidence in the direction of this conversation?



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#11

Viz Initiative fire, the biggest single advantage is that each unit's initiative fire is considered an individual command action.

To explain you have 3 units in initiative range, their commander can instruct them to fire - 12 dice needing 4s 5 hits 2 suppressing dice, = 5 wounds/suppressed.

On the other hand the 3 units might have achieved individually the same 5 hits and 2 suppressions, but as three separate commands the second suppression dice might have been from the 2nd or 3rd initiative shooting and therefore force the unit back as well. Force it back into another unit and they are both suppressed. Force into a suppressed unit and one unit is lost.

As you can see there is a big benefit to using small groups of units under your command to fire as you will end up shooting at units you've just suppressed, the danger is that you fail the CV and not all your units will fire. Also OFC you can't go back and use a unit, you'd stopped using.
A higher CV will more likely allow you to do this, naturally he would be better able to coordinate such an attack.
Initiative shooting does the same but takes some risk out.

Take the example above if all units have initiative fired suppressing a target, then in the command phase a higher CV [even on a -1] can take advantage and maybe force that retreat.

If I've read it correctly, a second suppression on a unit in a building will make it withdraw from that building. Even if you can't get in it will take one movement for the defender to get back to the building edge, one to get back in and only on the third can the defender fire from the building again, that might be three turns, more likely two.

Units in fortified bunkers etc, don't withdraw if suppressed, but if the suppression movement die equal more than 10 they are destroyed.



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#12

(06-17-2013, 07:09 PM)Dranask Wrote: If I've read it correctly, a second suppression on a unit in a building will make it withdraw from that building.

Cant find anything to confirm or challenge this interpretation for buildings. So OK. However, if is worth noting that the following units when suppressed act differently on fall-back:

p22
Dug-in troops and deployed guns remain where they are unless they fall back further than 10cm, in which case they are knocked out.

p36
Troops in fortifications (dug-outs, pill-boxes, and bunkers) who fall-back or retreat are knocked out.

one more,

p36 - minefields
Units that fall-back or retreat when they are in a non-dummy minefield are knocked out. Note command units must test for hits when moving thru a minefield.
Chris

"from mud, through blood to the green fields beyond..."
Brigadier General Hugh Elles

Blackadder: Am I jumping the gun, Baldrick, or are the words "I have a cunning plan" marching with ill-deserved confidence in the direction of this conversation?



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