Monday, July 25, 2016

1500 Early War Tournament at A.I.

We had eight players attend the first Early War tournament held in Albuquerque this last weekend.  There were three Germans, and one each of Italian, Soviet, Finnish, British forces, and someone even snuck in a Pacific U.S. Marine list. (Pacific points are supposed to be the same as Early War)  I brought a simple Infanteriekompanie from Barbarrossa, backed up by StuGs.

The first round of our two round event saw me matched up against the TO, Keith and his 'Honey' Stuarts on a very barren desert table.  The mission was Dust Up.

Both of us started without any of our tanks on the board (except for Keith's 1iC), choosing to let our reserves act as our assault force to take an objective.  Keith started with his Motor Platoon, a battery of 18/25 Pounders, and a pair of 40mm Bofors AA, while I deployed both of my Infanterie Platoons and my 3.7cm PaK36s.
On Turn One Keith moved his Motor Platoon up to take the large ridge of Very Difficult  terrain, supported by his 1iC.
I also moved out to take the ridgeline with my Infanterie, thinning his numbers a little.
I prepared myself to assault his position, but couldn't get a pin on the Gone to Ground Vets.  I went for it anyways, facing eight shots of Defensive fire (by leaving two of my teams as Non-Assaulting, I didn't bring the 'Honey' into Assault, and his Platoon commander was too far down the ridge to fire) but Keith landed six hits!  I was forced to retreat, but didn't suffer any losses.  My infantry would need to wait for support.
Keith's 'Honeys' decided to show up together, and immediately made a push for the oasis objective.  They destroyed two PaKs with MG fire, pinning them in the process.  With little to contest, Keith goes infor the kill...
And loses a platoon in the attempt!  The Anti-tank Rifleman, platoon commander and 2iC saw them off, one Bogging Down on the way in, and Panzerknackers doing the rest.  
Finally some support on Turn Five!  The StuGs bravely face the 18/25 Pounders, destroying all of the guns over the next three turns.  
Once the artillery was eliminated, I was able to surround the Motor Platoon and claim the objective from them.
That ended up being a very fun game. My Stukas came in for the first six turns, but all of them were shot down by Keith's AA.  Keith's 'Honeys' almost took the oasis, and destroyed the PaK platoon, but I was able to hold out long enogh for my reserves to make their appearance.  5-2 victory for me.

My second game was against Jeff and his Schutzenkompanie in Breakthrough, with me attacking.  

Jeff deployed his forces all along the front, forcing me to bunch my troops up in the corner.  He had a platoon of HMGs guarding the center of the board, so I figured breaking through his spread out Schutzen was my best chance.  I held one Infanterie platoon and the PaK36s as my flank attack, while Jeff held his Panzer II flametanks in reserve.  
My Stukas arrived on Turn One and caught one of his Schutzen platoons in their trucks, killing six out of eight teams.  After losing the platoon he was going to defend the objectives with, he started to pull everything back to the rear.  My main force would begin to quickly move to chase them down, catching them on Turn Five.  
My flank attack would arrive early and beat Jeff to the objectives, holding on until Turn Six when they would claim the win.  Jeff did some damage tothem with his flame tanks, but the PaKs that came in with them helped quite a bit.  6-1 victory, and a tournament victory as well!  

Thanks to Keith for organizing this, to Jeff for pushing through a vicious string of 'ones', and my friend Jon for driving eight hours round-trip.