To set the scene, Pat brought out a fantastic bottle of Belgian beer (Duvel) and we split it and started rolling dice!
Patrick's SS included an HQ (led by Panzer Meyer hisself!), three infantry platoons, a pair of HMGs (combat attached), a mortar platoon, a pair of 88s, and two 8-rads.
I had an HQ Panhard, a platoon of 5x Panhards, two platoons of 4x Panhards, a Fuciler Portes platoon, a platoon of 5x Somua S-35 tanks, and a battery of 75mm mle 1897. I also had 25pts of Air Interception, but that was more for the tournament and I couldn't be bothered trying to revamp the list.
|View of the battlefield from the French right flank.|
I placed my infantry, artillery and large Panhard platoon on the table, taking the gamble that my reserves would arrive and rush the flank that the 88s had the hardest task of covering. Pat placed the 88s from immediate ambush across from my 75mm guns on my right flank.
|Patrick's deployment area.|
|The French center.|
|French right flank.|
|Pat's fire from the 88s nearly wipe my 75mm battery out!|
No reserves straight away, but I advanced up the road, thanks to my recce move and redirected my axis of attack to the right. The infantry moved forward to put pressure on the left objective. The 75s managed to not range in on anything.
Pat took advantage of the artillery's failure and ripped into them with the long range 88s, scoring a hit on all four guns! Luckily I saved one, and pat failed two firepowers, resulting in the loss of one gun. His infantry opened fire on the Fuciliers, destroying a team and pinning them down.
Two reserves arrive and I bring in my S-35s and a platoon of Panhards along the far right flank. I moved them at the double to get them into position faster. The large Panhard platoon carried on along the road and engaged the far left objective with some ineffectual MG fire. The 75s once again fail to range in and the infantry remains pinned, despite the CiC babysitting them, and won't dig in.
Pat returns fire with the 88s and knocks out another 75mm gun and his infantry on the right continue to shoot up my fuciliers. Luckily no casualties were sustained other than the 75mm gun.
My last platoon of Panhards arrive and move at the double behind the others on the left flank. The infantry finally unpins and even digs in! The 75mm battery ranges in, but fails to hit.
The S-35s stay away from the German 88s and get in close to the SS hiding in the woods. Pandards back them up and prepare to assault should they be needed. One S-35 bogged down heading into the assault, but the rest go in and clear the wood of Germans. However, two more bog down during their consolidation move! A platoon of Panhards is committed, but is bounced by defensive fire, thanks to a well sited HMG.
Patrick doesn't get any reserves, but he manages to eliminate another 75mm, bringing the battery down to a single gun. His infantry attempt to move up and take advantage of my weakened flank. If he can get through the fuciliers, the objective will be his! It's a race to the finish.
His 2iC spots a chance for glory and maneuvers himself to take on the beleaugered S-35 platoon in the wood. With only three defensive fire shots, he stands a real good chance at bagging 520 points worth of French tanks! As fate would have it, his fearless rating would fail him on a result of 2, and the opportunity is lost!
|Pat's reserves arrive in force!|
With all of my reserves on, the chance is now to get in and clear the objective. Three Panhard platoons drive up into point-blank range. One S-35 remounts and joins the others in eliminating the 2iC threat and assaulting into the SS infantry on the objective. The Panhards follow up and push a little harder, but cannot budge the enemy and lose a Panhard in the process.
Pat's reserves arrive on the table, an SS infantry platoon and the pair of 8-rads. They arrive on my right, far from the objective I'm going for, but in an excellent position to destroy the fuciliers! Luckily my saves were hot and I kept them in action. The wheat fields slowed the progress of the 8-rads, so the threat would be slow in coming. The 88s turn their fire on the Panhards, but are unable to connect with any kills.
The Somuas press forward with only three tanks, pushing the SS further back. The Panhards went in again, with one platoon bouncing out but another pressing through and knocking out the pesky HMG holding the others up. Miraculously, Pat's morale continues to desert him as none of his troops press on with the incoming assaults.
Pat brings in his mortars and rushes them forward to keep the objective hot. The 88s turn their attention on the crisis developing on his right, but only one shot hits the Panhards! The 8-Rads press my fuciliers, knocking out another team while the SS infantry move into position.
A pair of S-35s remained well and truly bogged down in the wood, but the other three pressed forward to sweep the objective of German resistence, opening MG fire on the mortars and assaulting the command team as well as a few nearby SS teams.
The Panhards help out, failing to hit anything in three rounds of assault, but ultimately pushing the Germans even further back. Meanwhile, the fuciliers open fire on the incoming SS troops, and knocked the wind out of the German infantry attack on the left.
Patrick was unable to reclaim the objective, giving my French a solid 6-1 victory!
Thanks goes out to Pat for keeping good spirits despite some rather poor morale rolls!
Until next time...