I set up the board with fairly dense terrain, and so was glad Brian brought his Fallschirmjager as opposed to his panzerkompanie. I elected to run a generic US Rifle list I made up a while back. I was thankful he had no air- as I deployed I realized just how lacking I was in the AAA department.
I have a chart for rolling up the mission, and we rolled Hold the Line. But since we were doing infantry vs infantry, before we rolled to see who the attacker was we agreed to play No Retreat instead.
STEVEN'S US RIFLES (Confident Trained)
HQ + additional Bazooka
3x Full Strength Combat Platoons
Weapons Platoon (LMGs attached out)
Mortar Platoon (with 6 tubes)
57mm AT Platoon + extra bazooka
105mm Artillery Battery
155mm Self Propelled Artillery Battery
Self Propelled Tank Destroyer Platoon w/ M10s
Air Observation Post
BRIAN'S FALLSCHIRMJAGER (Fearless Veteran)
HQ + panzerschreck team
2x Full Strength Combat Platoon
Fallschirmpioneer platoon + supply truck
Mortars (4 tubes- the big guys with 4+ FP- 10.5cm?)
2x Pak 40s
4x Stugs (Confident Veteran)
Here is the initial deployment and map layout. You can see the US lined up along the Western line.
From North to South There is a US Rifle platoon behind the small wood, backed up by the 3 light mortars from the weapons platoon. On the bridge are the I&R and part of the 57mm platoon. Below them lined up just to the west of the town square is another rifle platoon, and the 6 tube mortar vattery behind them along the creek bed and woods. Below the farm house to the south is the 3rd Rifle platoon and the tank destroyer reckon section. The Artillery is deployed in a nice big artillery park in the fields in the South West.
The Fallschirmjager elect to begin with the fallschirmpioneers in the main section of town (We leave roofs off when stands are deployed in them so we don't forget about 'em) covering the one objective. They fortify their position with 3 barbed wire sections. In the bell tower of the church, a mortar observer is deployed. Far to the East you can see the 4 mortar tubes deployed on either side of the creek, and a fallschirmjager platoon deployed inside the woods around the 2nd objective.
Fallschirmjager fortify their position in the town.
Read On, Dear Reader!
The fallschirmjager mortars would go on to be the star of the game
Rear fallschirmjager platoon
The southern rifle platoon + tank destroyers
The middle rifle platoon backed up by some 81mm mortars
I&R + 57mm
Northern rifle platoon + 60mm mortars
Tank destroyer recon section
The US opens the battle by ranging in 155s on the town, and blanketing the church in smoke.
The northern rifle platoon moves into the wood, and the I&R takes the small buildings on the outskirts of town
Foolishly, I forgot the 57mms have no HE and thus wildly mis-deployed them. They will take no more part in the battle.
The middle rifle platoon moves into the town square, unprofessionally bunched up.
The southern rifle platoon and tank destroyers move out, under the thunderous roars of the artillery behind them
The Germans waste no time calling in mortar fire on the middle rifle platoon, pinning them for several turns and severely slowing the US approach.
The Germans also have extremely good luck with reserves (passing all 3 reserve rolls, and thus having their entire army on the board by turn 3). The first to arrive is the 2nd combat platoon.
The AOP calls in 105 fire on the reserves, but fallschirmjager don't stay pinned long!
The northern platoon moves out, preparing to assault the fortified Germans, but without the middle rifle platoon to back them up they lack momentum.
The southern rifle platoon continues to advance unmolested.
The Stugs and pa 40s arrive on the southern flank.
The northern rifle platoon assaults under 155 and smoke shells peper the enemy positions. They capture a small amount of fallschirmjager, but cannot advance beyond the wire.
The stugs dominate the southern hill.
The northern platoon is now caught in the open, and weather intense fire from the mortars and small arms from the reserve combat platoon.
Reserves move forward to secure the town
The US platoon clears one section of wire and assault. They knock the FJ below half but are completely wiped out to a man in retaliation. The middle rifle platoon still has not unpinned.
In the south, the M10s are sprung, and brew up one stug.
Looking from the US lines.
The town is scarcely held, but the US have nothing in range to exploit the weakened position.
The Stugs maneuver towards the town, and take pot shots at the M10s, failing to score any kills.
The M10s escape unscathed.
Combined fire from 155s and the M10s knock out 2 stugs, and bail one.
The stugs go up in flames
The battle field
105mm fire ranges in on the pak 40s, eliminating one gun
The AOP hunts down the remaining stug, calling in fire from the 155s, knocking it out. Both companies are now down one platoon.
Mortar fire rains down on the M10s and southern rifle platoon casing a few casualties and bailing an M10.
Further fire from the 105s knock out the other pak 40. The platoon commander passes his sole survivor check, and Brian elects to pull him off.
Finally the middle platoon gets moving and moves forward to capture the church.
The M10s move forward, bringing direct fire on to the mortars
In a surprise move, the Fallschirmjager in the woods surge forward, and assault the M10s who quickly break off.
On the US turn, they bring everything they can to hit this brave platoon, and assaults with the southern rifle platoon.
The assault is quick and bloody, costing many American lives, but the FJ are wiped out.
At this point Brian conceded, as he has nowhere near enough to get to the back field objective.
US lost one rifle platoon, making the game a 5-2.
This is the first time I've ever played against a full company of FJ. They are TOUGH! I really missed being veteran this battle, but it was nice to have a gigantic green horde. I definitely made some mistakes- I should've had my company commander closer to the center to get the middle platoons moving again. My strategy was fairly simple- advance along a broad front using my numbers to my advantage and push through any holes I made. The only problem was that I didn't have anything to push through the holes! Artillery worked well in my favor, but Brian's mortars single handedly stalled my center for far too many turns. Those guys were amazing.
I think Brian shouldn't have waived his Ambush- he could've crushed my southern front with a surprise assault from a FJ platoon, instead of having those guys sit in woods for many turns. Again, I am thankful he had no air- it would've chewed this list to pieces.
Overall it was a fun game, and Brian is a great opponent. Looking forward to the next time we get to square off!