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Tuesday, January 13, 2009

FOW: US Armored Rifles vs German Panzerkompanie

THE BATTLE OF PETIT RUISSEAU
Battle Report by Steven MacLauchlan.
German forces run and painted by Thomas Demayo.
American forces run by Dallas Edwards.
American painting by Steven MacLauchlan.



US ARMORED RIFLES (2nd Armored Division) -Attacking
Capt. D. Edwards Commanding

HQ + bazooka
1st Platoon
2nd Platoon
3rd Platoon
4x M4 Shermans
5x M5A1 Stuarts
1 Section of Mortars

GERMAN PANZERKOMPANIE
Hauptmann T. Demayo Commanding

HQ (2x Panzer IV H)
5x Panzer IV H
4x Panzer IV H
2x Tiger IE
Full Strength trucked panzergrenadiers


"The Town of Petit Ruisseau"


"The bridge across the creek into town"


"The church and surrounding town"


"The fields, farm, and crossroads"



********************************************************************
*----------------------------DEPLOYMENT----------------------------*
********************************************************************

Objectives are placed on the far side of the creek ahead of the town. The Germans deploy 1 panzergrenadier platoon on the banks of the creek preparing to move forward to the objectives, and the 5 strong panzer platoon in the forested area across the creek from the farm house and fields. He elected to keep the Tigers and the 4 strong Panzer IV Hs in reserve.

The Americans deployed the Shermans and the Stuarts on the opposite side of the creek from the fields, near the farm house. One platoon of armored rifles, the HQ, and the armored mortars all deployed in the fields. 2 platoons of armored rifles were held in reserve for the flank attack.


"American tanks mass across the creek"


"The mortars await fire orders"


"The German CO prepares for the attack"


"'Speedy' prepares to lead the charge"


"1st Zug goes to ground in the woods ready to repulse the Americans"


The Stuarts make the spearhead move, racing up around the farm house preparing to flank the panzers.

********************************************************************
*-----------------------------TURN ONE-----------------------------*
********************************************************************

AMERICANS: The Armored Rifle platoon in the fields moves up to the bank of the creek. The Stuarts swing around a small wood. The shermans follow closely, moving into the cross roads near the farmhouse.

The Stuarts take some pot shots on the panzers. One got a hit, but failed to do anything but wake the crew up.


"1st Platoon, C Company prepares to cross the creek"


"A Piper Cub snatches a few aerial shots of the battle just as it begins"


"The Shermans move into the crossroads"


"Get some smoke rounds ready boys, I expect them to call on us any second!"


"Bazookas to the fore!"


GERMANS: The Germans succesfully roll for reserves, and bring on the two tigers, directly behind the main US Armored push, and nearly colliding with the Stuarts. The Panzers rumble out of the woods, and sight on the Stuarts.

The Panzergrenadiers, HQ, and 2iC move forward and prepare to secure the objectives.

the Panzer IV Hs open fire on the Stuarts, and destroy one. The Tigers also open fire on the Stuarts, and entirely liquidate two. the remaining 2 stuarts flee the battlefield in terror!


"Ouch!"


"The Stuarts don't stand a chance between PzIVs and Tigers!"


""uh... Sir.. you sure want us to keep advancing?"


********************************************************************
*-----------------------------TURN TWO-----------------------------*
********************************************************************

AMERICANS: The Armored rifles charge out of the creek bed, and dash into the woods behind the Panzer IV Hs, preparing to assault! The Shermans, despite the looming presence of the Tigers, move forward to shoot the Tigers to try and soften them up before the assault.

Unfortunately, even a torrent of bazooka and 75mm tank shots fail to even scratch the paint on the panzer IVs! Despite that, the Armored Rifles charge into the breach at the urging of the company commander, and attempt to assault the panzers! But the panzers deftly swing their turrets around and force the brave riflemen back. Casualties are severe, and morale is low.


"The Shermans man up and charge hoping to pave the way for the armored rifles"


"Here we go boys!"


"CHAAAAARGE!"


"FALL BACK!!"


GERMANS:
No reserves arrive this turn. The Panzer IVs exit the woods to escape the armored rifles, but 2 tanks throw tracks on the way out. The panzergrenadiers and HQ elements continue to move up and secure the objectives.

Long range fire from the HQ elements damage a sherman, but not knock it out. The Tigers open fire and don't manage to get a single hit! The panzer IVs fire from the move, and knock one sherman out. Unfortunately, the panzers earlier positioned themselves with their front armor facing the impending armored rifles assault, expecting to knock out the shermans with combined fire from the Tigers. With the Shermans intact, the germans fail to storm trooper and correct this. ouch!


"Don't worry about those Shermans Hans!"


"Up 10... right 5... Fire!"


"panzergrenadiers secure the beer wagon"


"Shermans under heavy fire! Repeat ***SZZZZZZZ**"


"Perhaps our tanks should be facing... the other way?"


********************************************************************
*----------------------------TURN THREE----------------------------*
********************************************************************

AMERICANS:
The Americans don't get any reserves, but the Armored Rifle platoon does unpin, and again move forward to assault the panzer IVs. The Armored Rifles move forward with bazookas blazing, and manage to destroy one tank and damage another! the shermans also open fire, and knock out another two, forcing the two bogged tank crews to abandon their vehicles and run for the rear.


"get 'em boys!"


"Scratch 5 Mark IVs!"


"The tank graveyard I"


GERMANS:

The Germans get their remaining reserves, and roll the additional 4 Panzer IV Hs through the town at the double, racing to help secure the objectives. The Grenadiers on the objective dig in and prepare for the pending assault.

The Tigers open fire again and again fail to do any damage! the 2iC deftly snipes a sherman from the bridge.


"Reserves Arrive..."


"And advanced towards the objective after reports of enemy flanking maneuvers filter in from Battalion."


"Tank graveyard II"


"The Hauptmann"


"Another Aerial View"


"The church"

********************************************************************
*-----------------------------TURN FOUR----------------------------*
********************************************************************

AMERICANS: Again no reserves arrive. The Armored Mortars redeploy further forward so they can spot better. The Shermans move through the tank graveyard, in an attempt to escape the tigers. The Armored rifles move towards one of the objectives, and prepare to cross the creek. One sherman takes a long range pot shot at the 2iC panzer IV, but can't hit the target.


"Mortars redeploy"


"Navigating the graveyard"


GERMANS:
The tigers begin to move towards the objective as well, and the panzer IVs near the town move up to the banks of the creek. Long range fire from the 2iC bails a sherman, but the tanks fight on despite their heavy losses.


"Reconoissance reports 2 armored rifle platoons fast approaching!"


********************************************************************
*-----------------------------TURN FIVE----------------------------*
********************************************************************

AMERICANS: Both Armored rifle platoons arrive from reserve! Both platoons build up in the woods, planning to assault in the following turn. The first armored rifle platoon continues forward, and contests the objective.


The mortars bring a smoke barrage down on the panzers on the bridge, but besides that there is not much shooting.


"It's rainin' smoke"


"Achtung! here they come!"


"Ready MGs!"


"Acht! Mein tank is stuck! :("


CAT BREEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAKKKKK -This is Combat. He likes to watch and hassle/receive hassling from us.


"MEIN GOTT IN HIMMEL!"

GERMANS:

The tigers attempt to cross the creek, but one of them bogs down in the soft mud. The Panzers all move up towards the newly arrived Armored Rifles, and the panzergrenadiers move into the woods and prepare to assault! The volume of fire from the Panzergrenadiers and the 2iC manage to pin down the leading Armored Rifle Platoon. the remaining Panzer IVs and the unbogged tiger pin the rear AR platoon. Casualties are heavy in both platoons.

The panzergrenadiers then stormtrooper backwards, deciding not to assault after all!


"BRRRRAAAAAAPPPPP" (machine gun noise?)


"CHARLIE COMPANY TAKING HEAVY FIRE!"


********************************************************************
*-----------------------------TURN SIX-----------------------------*
********************************************************************

AMERICANS: Neither Armored Rifle platoon is willing to unpin, much to the chagrin of the commander! The first armored rifle platoon moves forward into the creek bed, securing one of the objectives. Unfortunately, several nearby panzers still contest it. The pinned down Armored Rifle platoons go to ground, avoiding the rain of lead.

The mortars again call in a smoke barrage on the clump of panzers, hoping to shield their bretheren.


"Platoon 1 on the objective"


GERMANS: The Panzers all move on to the bridge, ready to blast the Armored Rifles below. The Tiger moves forward and knocks out another sherman, forcing the platoon to flee! The panzergrenadiers continue to blast away at the front armored rifle platoon. Casualties are light. The Armored rifle platoon near the objective also come under intense fire, but again avoid taking many casualties.

""
"Death from Above"


"More American casualties"


********************************************************************
*----------------------------TURN SEVEN----------------------------*
********************************************************************

AMERICANS: Again neither flank attacking armored rifle platoon unpins much to the annoyance of Captain Edwards! The Armored Rifle platoon on the objective charge forward and attempt to assault the tiger! The mortars rain smoke on the bridge.

Bazookas bounce off the tiger's hull with no effect on the approach, but the brave Armored Rifles destroy the lead tiger in assault, and the remaining tiger flees the battle even with "for the fatherland!"


"After that Tiger boys!"


"The Bigger they are..."


GERMANS: The panzers on the bridge stay put, just managing to fire on one squad of the Armored Rifles below and causing minimal casualties. The panzergrenadiers continue to lay down withering fire on the forward Armored Rifle platoon, causing more light casualties.


"The Lts. can't convince the men to get up and keep moving"

********************************************************************
*----------------------------TURN EIGHT----------------------------*
********************************************************************

AMERICANS: The forward rifle platoon finally unpins and charges forward! Smoke covers the bridge again.

Fire from the two LMGs in the forward Armored Rifle platoon is just barely able to pin the panzergrenadiers. Defensive fire causes some casualties, but the assault manages to go through and wipes out the grenadier squad to a man! the 2iC PanzerIV fights on for a little while, but falls to a mass of bazooka fire.

The Germans are now below half strength having lost the tigers, a platoon of panzergrenadiers, and a platoon of panzer IVs. They pass their motivation check, and fight on!


"Give Em Hell!"


"NEEEEINNN!!"


"the objective is now solidly in American hands"

GERMANS: All 5 of the remaining Panzer IV Hs move up to the edge of the woods, preparing to spray the armored rifles with MG fire, and hope for the best. The MG fire is relatively light, but knocks the defenders below half strength. Excited from their previous win though, the Armored Rifles hang on. Then the Panzers crash into the woods and assault!

The Armored Rifle platoon is wiped out to a man after the bazookas fail to cause any damage! Emboldened by their courageous charge, the panzers breakthrough and assault the rear armored rifle platoon.

Defensive bazooka fire bounces off the enchanted panzers, who kill 2 stands in the assault! But the Americans are courageous and counter attack as the platoon is only comprised of 5 bazookas and the Lt now! The Americans knock out a tank and make the platoon run away, but BOTH American platoons flee the battlefield putting the company below half strength.


"For the Fatherland!"


"The Americans are ground down and are pushed off the objective"


"The panzers continue their assault, and shrug off multiple bazooka blows"


"The casualties mount up"


"The heroic panzers"


"Americans fight back"


The Americans then fail their morale check and flee the battlefield, snatching defeat from the jaws of victory!


4-3 in favor of Tom and his Germans.


What a game! I must have called it 5 different times in my head, and was continually surprised by what happened next. I can honestly say out of dozens and dozens of games this was the most intense and ridiculous!

Tom did the one thing he had left to do to force a victory... push the Americans below half strength and hope they failed THREE CONSECUTIVE MORALE CHECKS. It paid off for Tom in the end. Much shouting and disbelief filled the game room.


TOM'S THOUGHTS:

Ja, vee are dee soopermen! Sooper-dooper soooper-men! That was possibly the most improbably stupid winning move I have ever made....

... and my idiot Tiger "aces" are being demoted to Panzer IIIN drivers. The only thing worse than getting "For the Fatherland" on my tigers, was FAILING the 2+ when I needed it.

DALLAS' THOUGHTS:

This was by far the most exciting game I've witness. On several occasions it seemed the game was won, only to have the most improbable die rolls drastically turn the tide of battle. This is the first time I've played the Americans and I've gotta say, I'm sold. To sum things up: fantastic armies, and a fantastic game.



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