|My list. The StuGs proved expensive, but very tough. Everything else performed as expected.|
In the first round I was matched up against Tom's French Colonial infantry, playing the part of Polish forces in France in 1940. We played Encounter, and our Firestorm troops would be a single Char B1 and a platoon of four Panzer IIs.
A quick 6-1 victory due to the special event rules. The Recon ability really payed off in that game. A six inch pre-game move, plus a Double Move, then Assault plus Consolidation put me right in his deployment area by the end of Turn Two.
Round Two I'd get to face one of Arizona's toughest competetors, Mark, and his Polish Cavalry list in Dust Up. Mark would receive an extra Artillery Car for his armoured train, while I would get a platoon of Pioniers.
|The first two Turns saw some maneuvering by both of us, and a minor firefight near the Supply Drop. Reinforcements were had by both of us on Turn Three, Mark with his train, plus security tankettes, me with the StuGs.|
|The Luftwaffe would take it's best shot at the armoured train, but only destroy one car of three under the template.|
|Mark's reserves would also find themselves in a great position to assault the Objective, but the buildings would prevent a mounted charge.|
|With the pioniers gone and the command Sd Kfz 253 destroyed by the train, Mark's cavalry, backed by 37mm guns, began to push the defenseless StuGs back.|
|On Mark's Turn Seven the train rolled forward and knocked out my 221 platoon, but his tankettes were lost to the 3.7cm PaKs.|
|His infantry managed to chase my StuGs down, destroying them after a bloody assault that lasted about six rounds.|
In Round Three I was matched up against a fellow NorCal guy, Russ, and his British infantry. He would receive a battery of 18/25 Pounder artillery, and I would get a platoon of two Panzer III Es. The mission was Breakthrough, with me attacking.
Another 3-4 loss would see me at 12 points after the first day, not terrible, but disappointing after having a good chance to win both of the games I lost. Still, always fun to play a long-time opponent after having moved away. Special rules didn't play a huge part in this one.
|With a pair of Matildas sitting in the bombed-out city, I prepared to send only my infantry that direction, while my armor went the long way around...|
|But! On Turn One the Luftwaffe managed to drop a string of bombs right between these buildings and made a direct hit on Russ' Matilda II! This would open the city up for exploitation by my armor.|
|After spending Turn One preparing to take on Russ' front line, backed by 25mm guns, I decided to make a move into the city.|
|By my Turn Three my infantry had moved into position to Assault the artillery on the next turn.|
|Russ' Bren Carriers arrived on his Turn Three, chasing my infantry into the ruined church, before my StuGs chased them off through the city.|
|A staring match ensues, with the now-commanderless Matilda I stuck near the fountain in the city center.|
|On Turn Four I try to assault the guns, but it doesn't work out so well.|
|My troops have arrived from Reserve on Russ' flank, but his infantry have put themselves in position to contest.|
|The next three Turns sees a mad scramble for the Objective, but ultimately Russ' Carriers would hold out long enough for time to be called.|
Day two I was matched up against another NorCal guy, Sam, and another Polish Cavalry backed by a train. He got a platoon of 7TP tanks, while I received a pair of Panzer IVs. The mission was Fighting Withdrawl, with me defending.
This game was very fun! Sam's specialty is horse cavalry, and it proved apparent early. His Bypass platoon showed up right when and where he wanted them too! This game also saw a small bit of controversy, as when time was called we had only just reached Turn Six, even though both of us played at a good pace. Sam just had so many troops on the board, plus had to swap the mounted and dismounted troops a few times, and much of our time was lost there. I'm a strong believer in Fighting Withdrawl needing to go the full eight turns, and after time was called I could see that Sam was bothered that he was so close to the win, but wouldn't be allowed to finish. Since the lunch break was up next, we both petitioned the TO to continue play, and I'm glad we did. What would have been a 4-3 win for me became a 3-4 loss, but after the match Sam claimed it was one of the best games he ever played. A much better result than what must have initially felt like a mistake-caused loss.
|I would Kampfgruppe a few teams from one of my infantry platoons to get to eight total platoons for this one.|
|My left side, with 221s in a position to move. Sam would load this side for a push here.|
|My Stukas would arrive nearly every turn, but wouldn't kill much. Fearless troops laugh off Pin markers too.|
|In what would initially prove a mis-match, StuGs face-off against tankettes.|
|We decided to pretend the rail bridge was still intact. Sam's train and it's additional platoons would prove decisive.|
|Unfortunately for me, his pesky tankettes had returned to challenge a now lightly defended Objective, causing me to split my now dwindling forces.|
|Even though these troops were Tank Assault 3 thanks to the special event rules, the tankettes decimated them. They held out just long enough for me to remove this Objective.|
|The end of the game saw Sam's train infantry pushing back the StuGs, and right at the end of an extended time I failed a Company Morale check.|
My final round would see me matched up against a different Sam, one of the local Mesa guys. He would be defending in Hold the Line with British infantry. He would get a Matilda II as his Firestorm troop, while I would get a platoon of Infanterie. He would also get a platoon of Polish tankettes led by Roman Orlik since he was the Allied player with the lowest points total to not receive a bonus troop yet.
|Turn One my troops move out, crossing the railway and using crop fields as cover. Another platoon of mine would receive the Recon abilities thanks to the event special rules.|
|Orlik's tankettes appear from Ambush, causing my infantry to halt their advance until the StuGs could deal with the Poles. My Turn Two would see them forced to Dig In while the rest of my troops advance behind them.|
|I send my other infantry to clear out the farm complex, covered by the 221s and PaK36s.|
|All prepped for an Assault, but Pinned by accurate British defensive fire!|
|After the failed Assault on Turn Three, they go in again the next turn, this time clearing the complex.|
I would end the event with 20 points, good enough for sixth place and good enough to win a box of French 75mm artillery! They should look nice with Luftwaffe crew in Mid War. At the end of the campaign, the French are forced to surrender, and the British are thrown into the sea, but the Poles hold their borders intact! The Polish players had a very strong showing overall, ending at fourth, fifth, and ninth places. I'll be back next year!
|Final map. Western Europe belongs to the Germans, but Poland stays intact.|