Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Battle for St. Dominos Pt. 2.

The last post had my brave Italians withdrawing further into the woods after giving two of  Mr K.'s infantry companies a bloody nose. After their initial success, I felt it prudent to withdraw them before they received the attention of the US Heavy Weapons Company, or were outflanked by Mr. K's advancing infantry.
Outnumbered four to one, the brave platoon fell.
Visibility in the woods is 2".  Can't see the Italians? or the US? because them all look the same? Welcome to Mr K.'s world.... (Italians are group towards bottom left, the rest are US troops.)

This was where the US managed to gain their first success by catching the rearmost of the withdrawing Italian platoons and wiping it out. Its brave sacrifice allowed the rest of the company, and the battalion commander, to escape. The next turn saw the Americans advance further into the woods, while my brave Italian infantry moved out of the woods. closely followed by the US infantry. a brief firefight ensued, with the US getting the better end of it due to their superior firepower (the weapons platoons), and the support of the battalion mortar. the exchange was not all one sided though.

US Troops are bounced back into the woods from whence they came...

IWhile the italian troops take hits, and then would fail their morale...
And then came the Axis reinforcements! A full company of German Recon Armoured Cars - who as they are a different force will need to make all new spotting rolls for the US Infantry as they hide in the edge of the woods.
But I ordered Panthers......
Axis Reinforcements - Troop Quality: Veteran,  Morale: 10.
 German Scout Car Company w/
  1 Command  SdKfz 234/1
  2 Command  SdKfz 234/3
  1 Recon  SdKfz 234/1
  2 Recon  SdKfz 234/2s

The arrival of the Axis reinforcements allows Mr K. to dice for his reinforcements, and he rolls a 2. His reinforcements will arrive soon. In the meantime, I start to move my armoured force to deal with the Americans in the woods, and to protect the right flank of the monastery from an American advance in that direction. At this point I wishing for some more infantry and move my support stands into firing positions in a desperate attempt to increase the weight of fire from the monastery. In CD, if a Support stand is lost, a battalion gains a permanent -1 morale modifier, but with the Americans advancing I need the extra fire power.

The garrison awaits the onslaught of the US advance.
Fortunately more good news occurred when the company that had failed it's morale last turn decided to get back into the fight. They could only pass their morale on a 2 or less, so I was resigned to see them fail yet again, - perhaps even disastrously so - but they pleasantly surprised me.

A two Sir? Well ok!
This was to prove fortunate, as with the arrival of the US reinforcements, Mr K. was to become emboldened in his attempts to force a decision. After all, he now had a company of tanks to support his attack.

Shermans.... Where are my Panthers?!
US Reinforcements - Troop Quality: Experienced,  Morale: 8.
  Medium Tank Company w/
  1 Command  M4 (75)
  1 M4 (75)
  1 M4 (76)

The next US attempt to assault the monastery was made as his armour arrived on the table, and was a brutal attack by a full company of infantry, supported by his mortar platoon, on the flank of the monastery defended by the Italian infantry company that had been reinforced by the two support stands. Of course his attack had to cross open ground, which allowed the armoured cars to give supporting fire to the garrison.

Mr K.'s shame - His US troops were demoralised in their first encounter with Italians...

 The resulting encounter hurt me, but also resulted in the US company failing back, and failing its morale becoming demoralised. Of course soon the US armour was going to have a crack at things....

Shermans. Not a problem easily solved by my force.
The only good thing about their appearance near the monastery is that it allowed me to roll for further reinforcements, which would arrive in the next two turns. However, I had to survive the next two turns. This was going to be difficult.

The armoured cars get the worse of an exchange with the Shermans.
The armoured cars were able to hit the Shermans, but couldn't hurt them due to the range, their presence however made MR K. concentrate his efforts on dealing to them, rather than do further harm to the garrison, as he couldn't risk bringing his Shermans closer, nor risk sending infantry without the Shermans. The distance was also worked against him, as while he could destroy the armoured cars with his tanks, he first had to hit them - and the dice were against him that day.

The beleaguered garrison of St Dominos..
This was the point at which we decided to call it a day, as we had approached the end of our day of gaming. both of us were very happy with the way our ad hoc reinforcement mechanism had worked to gradually feed in additional troops into the battle, and both of us were impressed with how well the Italian infantry had performed - especially the plucky little company that just would not die!  as a result, I will be painting up some additional Italian forces for future games against Mr K. The game was judged a draw, with a tip of the hat towards the Axis, as we had reinforcements to come on table - (either a company of Panthers - which would have allowed US air support, or a company of Panzer Grenadiers in Halftracks) that could have tilted the game towards me more than Mr K. could cope with - I mean look at the trouble his boys were having with mere Italians...




4 comments:

  1. Good report. I like your reinforcement add on.

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  2. yes good report. you looked quite strong at the end there.

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  3. Escalating engagements like this can be a lot of fun, see-sawing back and forth... Well done them Ities, then!

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  4. Ah, the glorious old-style CD spotting rules. Almost a game in themselves!

    Nice escalating reinforcements mechanism.

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