Sunday, 3 April 2016


I thoroughly enjoyed the battle on Saturday - not only because the British squeaked through by the narrowest of margins but because the whole experience really came together.  We all knew what to do  and got on with it (34 turns is amazing!).

Mark was unlucky to hit the main line of resistance and showed the need for recon. Having said that my recon unit was unlucky (as were the 17pdrs later on) to feel the brunt of the Luftwaffe but it did mean that the main punch down our right went untroubled (as it appears Mark's punch down the left flank went as well).

The Germans played a blinder. Concentration was the key as was effective use of artillery. My tanks fell to Paks and Stugs combined and I was grateful that I didn't need to cross the river under concentrated German fire as I'm sure the experience would have been short and unpleasant.

Our plan was pretty obvious once underway. Ride down the flanks and get to the back tables with strength. In our case too much strength. We should have left more in o to counter the German movement which almost won it for them.  We ended up with huge numbers at the back but with little or no strength in the middle and front tables which could have proved decisive.  The middle table plan was to create a flank protection force of 17pdrs to threaten the Stugs and a mobile tank reserve to support them if required. As the 17pdrs were killed by the Luftwaffe I had to commit the ranks early and consequently lost them - it was the aircraft that made the Stugs think again...

Keeping a battalion in Buffaloes in reserve was a good idea but I think I committed too early. Having said that they did keep up in the game at the very end.

The key though was air power. Our plan was to take out the forward airfield early as German air attacks every 30 minutes would have been horrendous. We also decided to hit them on the off-table airfield with the aim of knocking them out of the battle which we were lucky enough to achieve. It gave the Germans a 'free' uncontested air strike but meant that on return their air assets were nullified.

The result of this was a dramatic shift in fortunes. The aircraft saved our bacon several times - stopping the relief attack on the airfield, routing Jons sneaking units and hence denying them table A2 and of course polishing off the Stugs. Without them, the Germans would certainly have won.

As for balancing the forces, I don't know. Reducing the allied airforce would help but historically I think it represents the situation very well. Indeed it was rare indeed for German forces to have any air support at all in the Western theatre.  Perhaps changing some if the German forces from Green to Regular snd giving all of them a HQ stand could be enough.  Russ and Jon showed how the Germans should be played and it was solely some uncharacteristic dice by me and lucky placement that saved the Allied day.

Great day, great battle. Well done to all concerned 😀


  1. I really enjoyed the whole experience including our Thursday night plan which looked impressive on paper. I can't really say we could of done much better as nearly everything fell into place on table.

    Jon handed out a lot of pain to Marks battalions and I sat tight for a good part of the game playing to my limited strengths on table 2A.

    As ever hindsight plays it's role and maybe things would of gone in our favour if as Jon mentioned we attached our Quad 20mm battalion with the Stugs.

    Not 100% on that one.... the Allied air power was supreme and certainly played a massive role in the German defeat. Although I did complain during the game about the aircraft, the end result was still very close and the reality as Phil pointed out was his superb dice rolling and Mark's off table Artillery right at the end which sealed our fate.

    It's difficult to imagine a better wargame than this. It had everything and more!

    I thought that the game was played in good spirit all round and demonstrated just how far we have evolved as a group over the last few years.

    Good show all round!

  2. I agree with you both. It was a superb game and we have a format that really works. The balance is difficult and I could be talked into reducing the attackers air power but I definitely think the Germans nearly won it. I'll write up a detailed response when I get a chance but well done everyone!

  3. What about leaving the forces as they are but adding a weather element. Each time the air strikes are due, roll for weather( umpire roll) and if it's stormy or or cloudy or whatever denies air cover then the air strikes can't happen. Could also effect airborne drops, think the polish at Arnhem or the battle of the bulge. Would add an unknown element to the game and possibly even swing a battle in favour of an aggressive German or British move without slowing down the game.