Guns of August happened over the weekend of August 23rd, and I just barely got my silly Remagen King Tiger List done in time, thanks to Sonbae painting the volkssturm for me on the quick!
I was literally putting the final touches on the King Tigers and the AA mere hours before the tournament. I know that's standard operating procedure for many of you, but it's a wholly new experience for me! Some last minute work travel book-ending Gencon, ate up all of my buffer time.
The tournament was Western Front and no NGFS was allowed, so I was feeling pretty good about my list choice!
Throck sent his mortars and most of his Chaffees after the objective in the bottom right, standing off at range and trying to blast the Xyzax bloodbags off the objective with little success. He tried to sneak his M18s around the small flank I left open in the top left, but I risked moving out the bloodbags to block him off. While that strategy worked well, it did cost them their lives in the end.
Eventually, the Kings and the AA wore out his TDs. One lucky round of shooting from the Kings wiped his mortars, and a platoon of Chaffees fell over a number of turns of mounting losses followed by a reluctant check.
The loss of the northern bloodbags left Throck with a last ditch effort to charge with his last 4 chaffees. He came out swinging, firing 8 dice of smoke and only scoring one hit. The return fire pretty much ended the game.
This was definitely an uphill battle for Sean! He couldn't really use his speed to his advantage, and he didn't have enough firepower to wipe out my infantry. In other words- my list worked as designed. 5-2.
familiar looking Westfalen list- except he had 3 Panzerfaust traps! Now we made a fairly big mistake here. Having NEVER encountered two auto-defend lists facing off, we weren't sure what to do. We looked up the rule, and even after reading it closely, decided rolling off to see who attacked was the right answer. After reading the rule more closely after the tournament, it's pretty clear that I should have been the attacker, which would've dramatically changed the outcome of this game. Hypothetically, I'm not sure I could've secured victory, but I do think I could've at least given Mitch a good fight.
But, we rolled it, and the roll-off is law so we proceeded... to mess up another rule! Mitch placed his Panzer IIIs and Volks in reserve (to do the flank attack). Of course, Volks always start on the board dug in and gtg! In this case, I think our mistake worked in Mitch's favor, as having them start on the board would've done nothing for him.
Rules mistakes aside, Mitch gave a solid fight. He launched two assaults with his SS infantry on my Volks- and by all accounts both probably should've worked. However, my pinned rifle teams stopped him in both cases. Mitch timed them well, launching assaults after I had moved my King Tigers away to get on the objectives in preparation for his flank attack.
I'm no newcomer to Breakthrough, and so I timed my movements well. By the time Mitch's reserves arrived on my flank, he had to deal with 3 King Tigers and my AA. Needless to say, his RC infantry and 4 Panzer IIIs really couldn't. Had he gotten lucky and gotten his PzIIIs a turn before, they may well have marauded through my backfield, wiping out my AA and nebs, but I took the gamble by keeping my Kings back for one extra round and it paid off.
At the end, Mitch came hard charging with his JTs, who iced a Volks platoon. His JTs and SPAA very nearly took down the second, but he had no troops within 16" of my objectives bringing an end to the game. A 5-2 to me, but this could've easily gone the wrong way if we had played the attacker/defender rules right. While I feel bad messing that rule up, I'm at least glad we both agreed to roll for it. I feel that the will of the dice had made itself known. I really like playing Mitch, and hope I can do it again soon!
Game Three Was against Bob Evans' US Paratroopers. He had 2 platoons of inf with combat attached zooks (one platoon was 'uge and one was medium), Para engineers, 6 glider 105s, Para AT w/ 57mm guns and zooks, and 4 recce jeeps with .50 cals. He also had limited Typhoons. The mission was FFA and I was fairly certain we'd just run out of time- no way I was getting one of his objectives. I knew if his air wrecked me, I might have trouble stopping him, but he had a long way to cross the board in the face of tank MGs!
To his credit, Bob was not content to camp. He sent his jeeps and big para platoon after one of my objectives, forcing me to divert strength from my main attack. I sent 3 King Tigers after his artillery, and diverted 3 back to the objective. I was able to grind his assault to a stop, but had I been one turn later, he would've almost certainly grabbed the objective. Well played on Bob's part- those paras can be nasty when they're aggressive!
In the end, I whittled down his artillery, stopped his assault, and parked some Kings close to an objective firing away with main guns. I would've killed for some recon or breakthrough guns! Bob got air a total of 5 times- once it was waved off, twice he failed to range in (I was hugging trees and buildings like my life depended on it!), Once I managed to save against the rockets, and once it claimed a king. My 2nd King Tiger of the day to go down!
The rest of our time was spent playing the Lord of the Rings LCG, Netrunner, and King of Tokyo. Lydia also came with me, and had a blast hangin' with the dudes and eating pancakes at a delightful breakfast joint called "Mama Steves". An A+ convention. Hope to see you all at Muster!