Monday, May 21, 2012

Death From Above or Below

Flames of War, 3rd Edition.  Hopefully getting the new stuff right.  Each side had around 1800 points, of which half had to be held off as reserves for the defender.  Scenario is a German para drop and glider assault on some rear area depot held by British veterans.  Said defenders had on table two platoons of motorized infantry, one vickers platoon (4 stands), a 3" mortar platoon (4 stands) and a section of Bofor AA guns (3 stands).  The Germans had two of their big para platoons, a pioneer platoon with flamethrowers, towed AT guns, recoilless rifles, heavy MGs and two groups of mortars.  According to the scenario the British started bailed out, in the open and pinned.  A free attack by the Luftwaffe set the tone for the game when even a truck made it's save and no losses were incurred.

The front is towards the upper right.

The rest of the defenders.

The para drop and glider landing seemed to go reasonably well, though not perfect.  It was noted that one glider crashed and was a total loss.  Otherwise the weapon canisters and sticks of Falschirmjagers landed on target and the table was soon swarming with Germans.  The massive bomb craters were treated as permanent "bullet-proof" cover.  Moving out of them did not remove them from play.  The buildings were also supposed to be ruins, but they weren't done in time despite a group effort.

The drop in progress or just completed.

The Germans and British alike had paid for air support and we had our chances for getting reserves.  After randomly determining which direction the front lines lay, we determined that reserves would arrive on any of six points.  The two road entries or deeper down table.

Pioneers nervously eye the Bofors.

Close or die!

Straight away a new pattern showed itself, whereby I would get lots of hits, but they would all be saved, and my comrade Bob would get no hits.  One of our platoons never even managed to unpin itself despite being rated confident.  Still, the odds began to catch up and despite having some vicker stands over-run in close assault, we were hanging on by our toenails.  Then we rolled and got the first of our reserves, a four tank squadron of Shermans.  At that a great sigh went up from the Germans.  You remember the glider that crashed?  It had all the AT guns aboard and half the recoilless rifles had already been eliminated.  The arrival point was most fortuitous for us since the Germans were on top of an objective.  Fortunately, the game could not end before turn 6 so we had our chance.

Showing over-run positions and advancing Germans.

One Bofor down, can they survive the rest?

Air power continued to be powerless.  When they managed to show up they did little for either side.  Although the Bofors caught a squad of German pioneers in the open and eliminated them, a whole platoon of (pinned) British infantry went down to close assault.  Then, like the proverbial US cavalry, a section of recon carriers, up gunned with MGs arrived behind the advancing Germans. 

Luftwaffe max effort.

Arriving in the nick of time!

Attack us if you dare.

Soon the Paras were without indirect fire support and the last recoilless rifle went down.  The Shermans rolled forward and crushed the Germans who were at their objective and formed a lager to protect it.  One Falschirmjager platoon attempted to close assault but rolled a "1" and the next turn was stopped by fire.  At that point with the Germans unable to realistically hurt the AFVs the game was called.

Gathered at 12:30.  Finished set up, pulled troops, looked up a LOT of rules and finished by 4:00. 

Really bad luck for the Germans losing their towed AT guns without firing a shot, but it could have gone the other way if the dice hadn't been so fickle throughout.

Thursday, May 17, 2012


All of Litharus celebrates, for word has come by courier that our much honored Germanic friend and neighbor the old Blue Bear of Saxe-Bearstein has returned to his palace.  Our own Grand Duke and Duchess Alexander and Mara Orzepovski has declared a week of joy and merriment across the land.
Throughout the country people have pulled out their own version of finery for food, dance and general merriment.
To the surprise of all, and dismay of his financier, the Grand Duke has declared a month of no taxes so his people may enjoy the fruits of their labors and rejoice.
From the castle at Trakai,
To the ruins of Ruzhany,
People laugh, eat and enjoy the celebration of life renewed.
Well, maybe not everyone is happy about the partying.

Swift and speedy recovery Jeff!