On Friday afternoon of course, I played the Hubbardton 1777 game with Ken and Alex using the "Fife & Drum" one page AWI rules. Saturday afternoon and evening, Dave and I played Alex's excellent and exciting "Fast Play Medieval Rules" which were an outstanding "hack and slash" mass battle game based on Neil Thomas' One Hour Wargames. On Sunday I played 2 x back to back games of Alex's UP THE BLUE fast play World War II rules using the same scenario #14 (twin objectives) with Alex and Ken.
The Medieval game scenario followed:
“The Battle of Orewin Bridge (also known as the Battle of Irfon Bridge) was fought between English (led by the Marcher Lords) and Welsh armies on 11 December 1282 near Builth Wells in mid-Wales. It was a decisive defeat for the Welsh because their leader, Llywelyn ap Gruffudd was killed, and this effectively ended the independence of Wales.”
We used the "Unfortunate Oversight" scenario from the One Hour Wargames book, and Alex's beautifully painted 28mm Medievals. Dave, who played the Welsh, stacked up the defense behind the town on the north bank of the river.
Not wishing to hack my way through built up terrain on the other side of a bridge, I decided to place my weight on the right. In fact, I placed ALL my forces on the right! Leading off with my mounted knights, my goal is to move towards the hill straight away.
|Felt marks the ford. I have 2 units of infantry, 1 unit of longbowmen, 1 unit of crossbows, and 2 units of knights.|
|knights deployed on the north bank of the river.|
|My infantry assembling to cross the river. They are next in line to head north.|
|Dave sends his mounted knights against mine on the plain.|
|My longbowmen on the left are fearsome and rain death down on the knights.|
|My other knights peel off to capture, or at least sit on, the hill.|
|Next thing you know I've got the entire Welsh Army all about!|
|Knights are suffering from constant contact. The yellow "6" means trouble for them.|
|Infantry still stuck at the ford.|
|A common sight on this battlefield. Infantry sitting still....|
|The final apocalyptic battle....|
|German forces arrayed for battle. 1 x StugIII platoon, 1 x Panzer IV platoon, 1 x Ferdinand platoon, 4 x regular infantry platoons, 1 x assault pioniere platoon, 1 x mortar platoon, 1 x ATG platoon.|
|Ken's massed forces on the hilltop|
|I make a dash for both the hill and the town.|
|Ferdinands lumber along at D6+2, the same speed as the infantry.|
|Ouch! Heavy artillery plasters this infantry platoon as they move forward. Permanent yellow die and 4 hits!|
|Ken places his troops deeper into the Ponyri terrain and places the komissar team (reroll a rally) behind the lead platoon.|
|AT guns and troops|
|My assault engineers are wiped out by mortars and artillery but I reach the town with 2 infantry platoons relatively intact.|
|My troops find good cover at the edge of the town|
|Armor changes course and speeds off towards the town.|
|Now 3 platoons are embroiled with the Soviets for control of the town.|
|Things start to go quiet over on the Soviet left.|
|Things are a mess here but we're holding!|
|Germans continue the push into Ponyri with massive casualties!|
|Holding fast in the northern portion of Ponryi the lead german elements will dig in soon.|
|Ferdinands come up to offer their support.|
|small scrap in the woods as I try to threaten Ken's infantry|
|Scratch 1 Soviet platoon as the Germans enter Ponyri from the west also. The toe hold is secure for now. But can they capture the town in time???|
|Trying to over run the Soviet AT gun platoon!|
|All that cleared space!|
Alex is working on rules for assaulting infantry and I think close assaulting a fixed, dug in position is really tough in his UP THE BLUE rules. So far the rules really have shined in terms of encouraging combined arms operations, softening or suppressing an objective, and protecting infantry until they're ready to be used on the objective.
The Germans probably needed extra firepower in the form of heavy artillery to reduce the objective and soften the defenders prior to "going in" as historically they had plentiful fire support at Ponryi from small mortars up to the dreaded nebelwerfers. So this might be a distinct possibility moving forward. Alex is of the opinion that it's a scenario design issue rather than a rules issue, and I tend to agree with him.
Happy New Year to all! May you roll 6's this year (or at least get your infantry over the fords).