This past Sunday we started our Early War desert Flames of War campaign at the club, for Operation Battle Axe. I am playing for the Axis side of course.
I was set to play a Meeting Engagement in Sidi Omar against Jay. The British had a marmon harrington and Guards infantry firestorms, and I had no firestorms.
This time I decided to try a list that was lighter on tanks but had buckets of stuff so I had:
2x Schutzen Platoon
Heavy Infantry Gun Platoon
3x Panzer 2
Anti-Tank Gun Platoon
2x Light Armored Car Platoons
So 9 platoons for me.
The British had 3 platoons of infantry, couple of matildas, bofors AA guns artillery the whole gamut.
We rolled for a mission and got Free for All which is the one I hate the most, but it actually turned out to be a good battle.
I forgot to take pictures at fist so here we are a bit into things. I put my tanks on the far right to fight the British tanks, later realized they were matildas so had to run. I was advancing my infantry into the town to pin the brits from reinforcing to the left. Everything eles was on my left flank, anti-tank guns, HMGs Mortars, infantry platoon, armored cars. My idea was to slow roll up the guns and chip away a path to the objective, starting with the bofors, one down already here. The armored cars mainly are a distraction.
The British then got a good hit in with their artillery and I lost most of my guns. But the bofors were down so I was happy enough with that. my HMGs and Mortars were palying the game of climbing the hill shooting directly on the move and then stepping down.
On my turn I found out the tanks were matildas so I decided I better pull my infantry back to sit on the objective. But I got my 3 other armored cars way up there and they killed enough infantry in the open for them to take a morale test which they failed. But left the cars badly exposed. On the other side I had lost my armored cars, but my mortars and HMGs had been able to chip away the last of the british heavy machine guns, so I decided to risk leaving a couple to get the rate of fire bonus.
Next turn my tanks hid behind a hill to be save. They had started taking some fire from the matildas and I wasn't ready to loose them. My cars by the town got off easy with only 1 loss so they headed to the other side. On the left side I advanced again but didn't get many kills. Starting to trade shots with the infantry in the Wadi a bit now and my infantry platoon is very reduced. Also I lost my guns on the hill to the british artillery.
Next turn I moved my tanks at the double to the other side, the Matildas were not moving so I decided they would be needed to get the other objective. I had my cars to remove gone to ground on the infantry platoons so my HMGs and mortars were a bit mroe effective this turn, and I got my gun shooting at those annoying armored cars but was only getting bails. But they were failing to remount all so fair enough. The brits fire back and get a few more kills, my company commander dies this turn which is a bit scary. We are both loosing teams so the grind is slowing a bit.
Another turn keeping up the pressure. My tanks double again behind the hill, so getting in striking range now. The 1 still alive anti-tank guns has all of the armored cars bailed now. My infantry platoon is whittled down so much I stopped trying to get used out of them and turned to just keeping alive. My HMGs and Mortars keep playing the hill game, the brit infantry has only a few teams left but they are dug in now. So I decided to leave the HMGs on top of the hill. Meanwhile the matildas finally start moving.
The matildas make it to the town and start to become worrisome, so better get that objective soon! My HMGs on the hill died to artillery or maybe machine guns I forget but still have the mortars playing their game. I get rid of the british infantry with an assault from my armored cars, the artillery is to far for defensive fire. My tanks show up and finally an armored car is killed. With me on the objective the brits now have to move a commander to contest, and also turn the artillery to fire directly but only get a few shoots and luckily miss!
My tanks are close enough to get on the objective now so they move up and kill all the command teams that could contest. My armored cars race forward and shooting the first 2 guns where they can get behind the shield killing them as they had never dug in. The british then move everything they can to try and kill my tanks but can't quite get the kills needed so I am able to secure a victory.
In the end I only lost 2 platoons by some miracle, but several others are just barely hanging in. So with the large army bonus it was a 5-2 victory, but well fought. If the matildas had moved on my objective earlier it could have been a real problem for me.