Saturday, December 28, 2013

Merry Christmas!

Hopefully all of our gentle readers got lots of lead, resin and plastic under the tree this year.  Frau PanzerCDR, being the kindred spirit that she is, provided a new piece of terrain to grace the favored basement tabletop, the latest from Crescent Root.  The farm terrain base is well constructed and sets off their buildings.  This is a really nice piece of terrain that is very visually appealing and well suited to any 15mm rule set.  I have already used it twice during holiday skirmishes.  My only quibbles are that the road pieces need to be rotated into place to fit snugly (this is minor).  Here are a couple of pictures as we get close to ending the year. 
Here is the terrain board setup with all four quadrants assembled.  Various Crescent Root houses fill up the upper two quadrants.  The road pieces are also by Crescent Root. 

The farm complex with a village in the background.  I was in a Crescent Root mindset so all of the buildings are made by the same manufacturer. 

A German kampfgruppe defends the farm complex against an expected British offensive. 

Panzer Mk IV H move up to reinforce the panzergrenadiers.

British gunnery was pretty good over the Christmas holidays.

More Panzers brew up. 

Intrepid Shermans of the 13/18 Hussars attack the degraded German positions. 

Another view of the farm complex.  Either way you look at it the Panzers are burning. 

"There are a lot of Tommy Tanks there to shoot at!" 
 I hope you all had a Merry Christmas! 

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Dust Up Near Carenten - Part II

     As we last left our FT German attack the 17. SS Panzergrenadier Division had FINALLY gotten its attack going with 2 SS PG zugs and a StuG IV zug attacking the American center.  Unfortunately all of the American reinforcements had arrived and were close to the German schwerpunkt, whereas the German reinforcements were far from the scene of the action.  With the US artillery ranging in, it was time for the Germans to do some of that Blitzkrieg stuff and win the day. 

StuGs and Shermans trade fire and eventually end up killing each other off but little else. 

Paratroopers and panzergrenadiers trade fire along the hedgerows.

An SS AT zug moves up ever so slowly.  Who forgot the prime movers? 

How do you say "Defeat in Detail" in German?

More StuG fire against the Shermans. 

This is starting to look bad . . .

StuG IVs in the hedgerows.
The German attack is stalled again. 

Another StuG buys the farm while the panzergrenadiers are pinned by the American artillery fire. 

Meanwhile the German flank is about to get hit hard by a lot of FV paratroopers.

The company commander tries to encourage the StuGs to shoot straight, or at least roll 6s.

His motivation is not effective.
Paratroopers shoot at the exposed Germans.

Who needs Major Winters anyway? 

The HMG zug foolishly tries to move up and assist the wavering attack. 

StuGs and Shermans continue to exchange 75 mm shells.
The German flank is hit from the side.  Ugh. 

The lone survivor from the German right flank defends his hedgerow. 

A German counterattack fails to stop the Americans. 

American fire and a timely assault clears the SS on one flank.
American fire whittles down the other German flank to a StuG IV, the company commander and a zug commander.

US fire kills off most of the HMG zug which breaks and runs without causing any American casualties.

An American assault dispatches the lone zug commander.

The reinforcing PG zug tries to stem the tide . . .

. . . and fails. 

What can stop these guys? 

Ostruppen try to stop the Americans.  I don't think their hearts were in this . . .

The ostruppen like the cover of the hedgerows.  Their fire is kills a few stands but doesn't break the platoon.  Return fire from the paratroopers and artillery breaks them quickly.

American AT guns redeploy to attack the remaining StuG. 

The FV Americans fight on to the end!

Meanwhile the company commander and a StuG try to hold the center while the reeling PG zug tries to regroup. 

Another American assault is deadly. 
Dug in panzergrenadiers try to resist the paratrooper attack. 

They hold on but remain pinned. 

The lone StuG IV tries to make up for another hole in the line after the ostruppen are scattered.  With the loss of the company commander, the Germans have lost too many zugs and concede the field. 

Now what the heck did the mortars, HMGs and nebelwerfers do in this game?  Not much . . .

 The large table and restricted reinforcement zones allowed the Americans to mass their fires and reinforcements and prevent the Germans from getting anywhere.  Again, the lack of heavy artillery to pin and destroy the FV American Paratroopers was a big problem, though the over eager attack doomed whatever chance the Germans had.  Perhaps Herr Baron Von der Heydte shouldn't be denigrated so quickly . . .

An excellent Thanksgiving meal by Frau PanzerCDR takes away the agony of defeat and replaces it with the agony of an overextended stomach. 

Dust Up Near Carenten - Part I

Well, as promised, here are the images of my latest defeat in the Flames of War universe.  Not as bad as promising the Bastogne Church only to have the paint job look slightly pedestrian mind you, but still annoying

In any event, my opponent was home from grad school where he had learned new ways to obliterate Fearless Trained members of the 17 SS. Panzergrenadier Division.  We played on a 6' x 8' table and did the Dust Up mission as the German counterattack at Carenten against the 101st Airborne Division jumped off just slightly earlier than the planned American attack.  We also limited the reinforcement areas to those that were somewhat historical.  And, the American Sherman platoon from the 2nd Armoured had to be the last reinforcements taken for the Americans.  It was pretty close in real life and I did have my chances as the German commander.  Still, close only counts in horseshoes, hand grenades and bombing Hamburg, so it still counts as a loss. 

     At least I got to use all of my pea-dot camouflage forces.  I put on the field an SS Panzergrenadier  company HQ with two Panzerschrek teams, 3 SS Panzergrenadier zugs with panzerfausts, an SS HMG zug with four HMGs, an SS mortar zug with four 81 mm mortars, an SS Assault Gun zug with four StuG IVs, an Heer nebelwerfer section with three 15 cm launchers and an ostruppen platoon for a total of ~1700 points.  Surely enough to bull my way to Carenten, even without Von der Heydte. 

Another hedgerow laced field to cross!

The German entry point is the lower right hand corner.  Carenten beckons to the upper left hand corner.

The town has been well shelled by the Allies. 

The American entry zone.  The Germans must not pass!
There area a LOT of paratroopers here.  Even if Major Winters isn't painted yet!
The German objective.  We tried to use a bunch of units that haven't seen the harsh combat of the basement table. 
A PG zug prepares to advance.

StuG IVs are well camouflaged to prevent attacks from the dreaded jabos!

Up the road to Carenten.  The US objective lays in the middle of the shell pocketed town.

A US paratrooper platoon has about a zillion FV stands. 

Glider borne 57 mm antitank guns guard the German objective. 

A US 105 mm glider battery prepares to bombard the incoming German attack.

US LMGs can put out a LOT of lead. 

The German attack commences. 

One of the two SS PG zugs moves along the table edge to flank the Americans.

American paratroopers aggressively probe the German flank.
Perhaps too aggressively as the StuGs kill off a stand with MG fire.

FV StuGs are the lead element in the German attack. 

US aggressiveness is not foolishness as the paratroopers take cover.

US artillery fire peppers the advancing Germans, delaying the thrust up the road. 
Carenten!  So close . . .
. . . and yet so far!  Massed German infantry is an inviting artillery target.

StuGs shoot at the Americans in the hedgerows with little effect. 

German rocket launchers do little to assist the attack. 

Paratroopers counterattack the German panzergrenadiers.

US reinforcements arrive! 

The LMGs calmly await the expected German assault.

Moving at the double has some risks, but the Germans are not in the American Line of Sight.  Yet . . .
More German reinforcements arrive but they are at the far end of the board away from the action.  I should have spent the points to get the trucks!  Here the SS HMG zug moves up. 

The StuGs advance and pound the equally FV paratroopers to little effect. 

The Germans use the hedgerow as cover and fire at the Americans at the other side of the field.

The Germans have 2-3 zugs that can finally attack. 

More carnage in the center.  Where is the 2nd Armoured?

Here they are!  Shermans begin to trade shells with the StuGs. 
Let's hope that schurzen works as advertised!

Perhaps Herr Krupp needs to work on that design.  The first StuG IV dies despite the foliage. 

More German reinforcements arrive.  They are far away from the action. 

The ostruppen are less than excited to fight in France for Germany against the Americans.  Perhaps that is why they are Reluctant Conscripts. 

An American paratrooper platoon tries to flank the stalled SS PG zug

Germans and Americans fling shells and dice at each other. 

The SS PG zug is well protected but that is not going to get them to the objective.
Will the American center hold?  Those who have read other accounts on this blog have little doubt.  Look for Part II soon!