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Tuesday, August 23, 2011

British Rifles vs Italian Bersaglieri


STEVEN'S BRITISH RIFLE COMPANY
  • HQ
  • Rifle Platoon + Sticky Bombs
  • Rifle Platoon + Sticky Bombs
  • Rifle Platoon + Sticky Bombs
  • Scout Patrol
  • 6 Pounders
  • RA Battery w/ 4 25 pounders
  • 3x Matildas
  • 3x Valentines

JAIME'S ITALIAN BERSAGLIERI
  • HQ
  • Full Bersaglieri + Passaglia Bombs
  • Full Bersaglieri + Passaglia Bombs
  • Cannon Platone w/ 75s
  • 2x Lancias
  • 5x M14/41s
  • Full Semovente Battery + AA MGs

Jaime hadn't played a game of flames of War in a long time, but was anxious to resume command of the Italians. I made an effort to make a board that was MUCH sparser than I usually make- even for the desert. I used the new Hellfire and Back rules for generating the terrain ahead of time. We rolled for the mission and came up with No Retreat. Naturally, the British would be attacking at night.


DELOYMENT AND TURN ONE


Jaime began with 1 Bersaglieri and the Cannons on the board. Lancias would be placed in ambush. Steven elected to attack at night. The objectives are in the upper center just in front of the cannons, and the bottom left just above the small ridge line.

The desert is bathed in darkness.

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Bersaglieri wait for the impending attack.


An Elefentino sets up on the edge of an oasis.


The cannon crews prepare their guns.


The British infantry move into position in the darkness.


6 pounders begin limbered up on the back of Matildas.


A troop of valentines are assigned to the left flank.


The Royal Artillery takes up position on a rocky hill.


The order is given and the infantry advance with strict orders not to fire.


Valentines trundle forward, narrowly avoiding the salt marsh before them.


Veteran Elefentinos fire on British scout carriers- having just spotted their silhouettes coming across the hill!


All of the carriers are hit, but miraculously the shaken crews survive!


COMBAT CASUALTY SUMMARY


BRITISH
none


ITALIANS
none


TURN ONE SUMMARY

BRITISH: The advance order is given. No shots are fired
ITALIANS: Elefentinos bail all 3 of the British carriers.


TURN TWO




The Infantry tank "Alice" takes point.


The British infantry is trained in the art of night attacks, and navigate the desert with confidence.


Soft sand slows the advance.


Valentines avoid the salt marsh.


COMBAT CASUALTY SUMMARY


BRITISH
none


ITALIANS
none


TURN TWO SUMMARY

BRITISH: The advance continues. Still no shots are fired.
ITALIANS: No reserves, no firing.


TURN THREE




Ariel looks on as a 75mm gun is knocked out by a light mortar, and her own machine guns light up the position with tracer fire.


The infantry nears the cannon position!


Valentines move forward on the left.


And assault the FO of the cannons.


Lancias spring their ambush!


The leftmost Lancia knocks out a Matilda!


While the other Lancia bail out 2 of the Valentines!


Bersaglieri HMGs can see troops illuminated by moonlight and open up, knocking out one team.


The cannons, knowing infantry is within rifle distance loose a barrage at short range!




COMBAT CASUALTY SUMMARY


BRITISH
Matildas: 1 tank
"North" Rifle Platoon: 1 stand
"South" Rifle Platoon: 1 stand


ITALIANS
Cannons: 1 gun / observer


TURN THREE SUMMARY

BRITISH: The advance continues. A light mortar knocks out a cannon as the rifles move into assault distance.
ITALIANS: No reserves. Lancias knock out a Matilda and bail 2 Valentines.


TURN FOUR


Just as the British get into assaulting range, the sun rises behind them.


In the morning light, Ariel continues to lead the charge forward!


Scout carriers move into position to get behind one Lancia's guns hield!


And are wildly successful! Both Lancias go down in a hail of bullets from the carriers!


"Fix Bayonets!"


Charge!


They silence the Italian guns and seizing the objective.


While the remaining two Matildas prepare for the inevitable Italian reserves.


Semoventes arrive from reserve, racing forward!


They fire on the Matildas, but their sturdy armor bounces the shots.


Elefentinos knock out a carrier!


A carrier burns in the morning light.


Semoventes face the Matildas.


COMBAT CASUALTY SUMMARY


BRITISH
Matildas: 1 tank
"North" Rifle Platoon: 3 stand
"South" Rifle Platoon: 3 stands
Carriers: 1 carrier


ITALIANS
Lancias: DESTROYED
Cannons: 4 guns


TURN FOUR SUMMARY

BRITISH: British rifles slam into the cannons, knocking out all of the guns.
ITALIANS: Semoventes arrive from reserve. The staff team of the cannon battery moves forward to contest the objective. Concentrated fire knocks out 1 carrier.


TURN FIVE


The riflemen move forward to solidify their hold on the objective after decimating the remnants of the cannon platoon.


Despite both tanks in his platoon being bailed out, the Valentine troop commander gives the order to assault!


But quickly finds himself surrounded.


Jaime cleverly moved a rifleman to within 4" of the other two valentines while staying out of 2" of the carriers. All 3 Valentines burn at the end of the foolish assault.


The right flank.


The Italians are now desperate to recapture the forward objective. Unfortunately, the Carro Commando throws a track attempting to climb the hill.


M14/41s arrive from reserve, passing two Semoventes who were previously bailed by the Matildas. Unfortunately, they find themselves too late.


The rifles holding the objective sustain fire from the Bersaglieri.


small arms fire and elefentinos bail both scout carriers.


Who decide discretion is the better part of valor and quit the field!


After softening up the forward rifle platoon (even putting them below half, though they fight on!), the semovente have no chance but to assault, even though it means earning the ire of the Matildas. Another Semovente throws a track on the hill on the way in…


But predictably, the defensive fire is too much for the Semoventes to handle.


COMBAT CASUALTY SUMMARY


BRITISH
Valentines: DESTROYED
Carriers: DESTROYED
Matildas: 1 tank
"North" Rifle Platoon: 5 stands
"South" Rifle Platoon: 3 stands


ITALIANS
Lancias: DESTROYED
Cannons: DESTROYED
Semoventes: 1 destroyed vehicle


TURN FIVE SUMMARY

BRITISH: The rifles consolidate their hold on the objective. A foolish assault destroys the Valentines needlessly.
ITALIANS: The situation is desperate- with late reserves and no troops to hold the forward objective, the semoventes bravely push forward but fail in their task.


TURN SIX


The British rifles begin the turn holding the objective, thus winning the day. With heavy losses, they earn a 4-3.



CLOSING THOUGHTS

Very fun game! Playing on such a sparse table was interesting, and goes against the grain for our gaming group. Without night attack this would've been a very difficult attack indeed!

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