We played a roughly 450 point game with a veteran 12th SS Platoon and a handful of Panthers against a Canadian infantry platoon with a troop of Shermans, Achilles, and a 6 Lb'er in support. This was an unusual and hard-fought battle fought in Normandy.
|A crossroads in the Norman countryside. The Germans come from the right, the Canadians from the left.
|Achilles moving down the road (yes, I know they're Wolverines but you get the idea...)
|Heavily armed HJ's scramble into cover as they hear the approaching tanks.
|Platoon command squad, armed to the teeth, moves along the church.
|Wilke's men fan out along the roadways and into the houses to lock down the corner
|Panthers from the 26th Panzergrenadier Regiment move in to support Wilke's men
|Panther G #401 moves up to the Church. Wilke jumps up onto the deck and confers with the TC.
The Panther begins a sneak and peek game with the Achilles, trading numerous shots but none of them ring home. Dave maneuvers his other Achilles around the farm, hoping to get a flank shot against the big cat. The Panther crew moves back behind the Church. To the Shutzen who are watching the tanks go back and forth, it's not quite so comforting. There will be infantry right behind those green monsters.
|Dave positioning his tank destroyers to threaten the village
|Panther and the Achilles trading shots!
|Destruction everywhere with burning Armored Fighting Vehicles.
|Panther 401 at the church rectory.
Dave's reinforcements start moving up the road towards the fighting. Meanwhile my Schutzen are crossing the road, sprinting, to get into cover. They use the burning Panther to move forward. Dave seizes 2 objectives already but we're making him take the third as well (the church).
|Germans in the woods as my SS Schutzen fan out. The camouflaged panther is my "panzer ace" which, sadly, i totally forgot about and never used that ability.
|NNSH moving down the road at the double time
|Schutzen LMG team sprints over the road to get into cover!
|An SS Scharfuhrer motions to his men to hurry up!
|Meanwhile an LMG team in the culvert at the road holds down the German left flank. They see Shermans in the distance!
|Dave's troops along the church catching their breath before moving out to assault the farm!
|SS Schutzen squads moving up!
|Meanwhile the Canadians are in the farmhouse!
|More and more Canadian reinforcements are showing up and moving towards the farmhouse. An epic clash is shaking up!
Dave's command group and FO move to the stone shed to hold down the Canadian flank until more infantry get on the scene. The farmhouse is a deadly trap as bullets are flying from every direction.
|We're all there is for now, Sergeant! Move out! Dave's Platoon Command team moves to hold down the left flank until reinforcements get up.
|THe Shermans, finally free of the wall, move out at high speed. Dave gets a lucky shot and takes out my Panzer Ace! I have no more armor but the infantry are too busy to notice!
|Germans are at the edge of the wheatfield. Note the small stone shed outbuliding in the courtyard. The platoon command team is keeping the Germans at bay now with accurate mortar fire.
|Canadian Tank Commander from the Sherbrooke Fusiliers spots targets across the field!
|Dave's armor starts whittling away at the infantry as best they can but it's no substitute for ground sloggers rooting them out.
|Meanwhile, one of my last rifle sections moves up to assault the shed. Dave's FO uses the platoon mortar to keep them away! It breaks up the first assault!
|preparing to assault the farmhouse!
|My schutzen in the house. Dave is bringing up reinforcements to counterattack!
|Dave's squad coming up to re-take the house. It's rough work. He passes the test, and rolls a 6 for the grenade bonus. That's 16 dice to use in the assault!
|The Canadians are back in charge.
|Prepare to defend yourselves! Gerry is crawling all over this place, eh?
This game was a real nail biter. What started out as a "cat and mouse" game between the panther tank and the achilles TD's turned into a sharp, quick infantry firefight and nowhere on this battlefield felt safe. We did make one mistake and only used 1D6 for orders, instead of 2D6, which would have made the game go much faster.
The mortars were used to great effect on both sides and the real star of the battle had to have been the Canadian platoon command group, who held off the repeated SS assaults against the stone shed in the courtyard. Without them there, my Shutzen could have used that building to fire on Dave's reinforcements. Additionally, my infantry were much too slow in getting up to the house. In this instance, it would have been better to sacrifice cover for speed as Dave had ntohing to really threaten them with in the beginning.
A great, 4 hour game and a wonderful Friday night. Now it's back to Talavera and flocking the British and Spanish infantry!