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Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Big Red One vs Panzer Lehr (Operation Overlord)


Tom and I wanted to get in on the Overlord action, and so played a game just passed Omaha Beach featuring a German mechanized counter attack. We settled on "Cauldron" to represent the mission. Note that we are using the old D-Day books. We played So. Many. Turns. That a blow by blow is not possible. Instead, I'll just show the pictures as they happened!


Steven's Big Red One
  • HQ + 2 Bazookas
  • 3x Rifle Platoons
  • Weapons Platoon w/ 2 LMGs (attached) & Mortars (Separate)
  • M18 Tank Destroyers
  • 105 Battery + AOP
  • Cav Recon
  • 3x 57mm Guns
Tom/s Panzer Lehr
  • HQ + 1 faust + schreck team & track
  • 2x Full Panzergrenadier Lehr Platoons
  • 4x Panzer IVs
  • 2x Grilles
  • 3x Pumas
  • Nebelwerfers


 Tom brought mead.  It was tasty, and very alcoholic.

 The setup!  The US have 105s, 57mm guns and 2 rifle platoons on the board.  The Germans start with Pumas, Nebelwerfers and the Grilles.

 The US position.

 Panzer IVs

 Recon survey the battlefield.

 Pumas

 The AOP calls in fire from the 105s, but the Panzers are unscathed.

 The Panzers trundle up the hill to return fire on the 105s

 And take one down

Nebelwerfers arrive from reserve

 The 105s shift fire to the nebelwerfers and take one out.

 15cm shells from the Grilles fall in the US position but cause no casualties.

 The developing battlefield at the end of turn 2

 105s call in fire and this time bag a Panzer IV.

 M18s show up

 The Pumas recce away, but one is still in range and gets blasted.

The first panzergrenadier platoon along with the HQ, 2iC, and attached Panzerschreck arrives.

 Nebelwerfers and Grilles take down a 57mm and 105mm gun.

 Panzer IV hull down

 105s gutted.  Left with a single gun.

 Gulp.

 3rd Rifle platoon arrives from reserve

 The lone 105 understandably cannot unpin


M18s gun for the halftrack swarm


 Grilles and Nebelwerfers fire on the M18s

 Panzergrenadiers assault while their halftracks lay down a base of fire!

The US break off after a few light casualties.

The Panzergrenadiers consolidate into the wood.

 The M18s nail 2 halftracks


 Grilles and Nebelwerfers keep up the pressure

 And the Panzergrenadiers prepare to launch another assault.

 Pumas face off against a US rifle platoon.

 More Panzergrenadiers arrive on the opposite flank and prepare to launch a mounted assault!

 On the original flank, the longest, bloodiest assault I've probably ever played is about to begin.  Two large platoons with company commanders present will make for a great fight!

 Charge!

 The carnage is mounting.  Both company commanders are in it to win it.

Both company commanders are now dead.

 The fight is nearly over, with the Panzergrenadiers knocking out the last of the 105 battery in their death knells.

 Having both lost their commanding officers, both units break.  The US have lost 2 platoons!

 The mounted assault goes off successfully!

The US begins pulling back to the hill.

 Bloody.


 Sneaky Recon makes for the German artillery park.
 While M18s take a few potshots at the Grilles

 Before consolidating back to hamburger hill



 Tom deploys his Panzergrenadiers
 A Nebelwerfer bombardment knocks out an M18.  Every remaining US platoon is hanging on by a thread by now.


 Tom begins circling the hill like wolves
 M18s go for broke on the Pumas, but only bail both!  They stick around.

 US Rifles approach
 Pumas remount, and wipe out 2 more M18s.  A lone M18 is left!  We have both passed a lot of platoon morale checks at this point.
 The bedraggled US forces barely hold.

 The 3rd US platoon gets hit in the open.



 The US bail a Puma!  But the boys fail to launch an assault on the lone puma.  Heartbreaking.
 The one 57mm gun keeps firing on the halftracks, and finally bails one but they stick around.



 Halftracks, tanks, and Pumas focus fire on the 3rd US platoon.

 And wipe them out.  The US are now down 2 rifle platoons, and 105s.

 US Recce sneaks backfield and puts the hurt on the Nebs and Grilles.

 US 60mm mortars fire from afar nearly every turn, but are only slowly whittling the German infantry.

 Halftracks focus fire on the 57mm gun

 And take it out!  The US are just barely hanging in there!


 More US infantry teams succumb to main guns from the tanks and Pumas, but they hold.
 Recon prevails, knocking out both Grilles and both Nebelwerfers!  The M8 just out of frame does the heavy lifting on the Grilles, while the mortar jeep deals with the nebs.
 The lone Grille commander.

 The lone Nebelwerfer commander.

 The M18 wipes out a halftrack forcing the rest to pull off the board!

 But the end is in sight...

 The Hellcat goes for broke.  The US are just 2 rifle teams and the 2iC left on the hill!

 A 60mm mortar barrage actually bails a puma!  And then the M18 kills one!  This could be it!

But sadly, no.  Tom passes the Pumas' motivation test and the return fire wipes out the last M18 leaving the US company below half strength.  Although the US have a shot of passing motivation with the 2iC, we've been playing for a LONG time (literally probably 20 turns), and the outcome seems inevitable now.

A very hard fought 3-4 to Tom, my longest running Richmond opponent!  Congratulations, my friend.

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