Monday, July 23, 2012

Kursk Mega Battle (FOW)

The gaming group in Auburn got together and fought a midwar mega battle just before FOW v.3 came out. (Yes I know that was a long time ago, but I'm just getting to posting this report) Each Side consisted of 3 players, each commanding certain types of forces, tanks, infantry, artillery, etc.

The battle was fought on the northern edge of the Kursk Salient with the German 9th army attacking fortified Soviet positions. I decided to run this game after finishing a book on the 4th Panzer Division.
So the German force contained a company of Panzers from the Panzer-Regiment 35 and a company from Panzergrenadier-Regiment 33, with a few Brummbars the break the fortifications. Its my intention to get another mega game together for Prokhorovka in the south.

3000pts of Germans doesn't look like much in MW.

These Mk IV's are where most of the points went.

I would be running the PzGren's in  the game.

The Pioneers to help get through the minefields.

The Soviet players deployed a Strelkovy Batalon in three lines of fortifications and a Tankovy Batalon. The Strelkovy was entirely on the board the Tankovy was in delayed reserves as a counterattack force. The Soviet players decided against deploying a company of tanks in gunpits, they were afraid of the preliminary bombardment.

Now 3000pts of Soviets looks like a lot.

"Sir, what do we do against the fascist tanks?"

"Don't worry they won't get past the AT guns.

The mobile reserve, there are a few odd tanks out there.

The mission is a revised version of the big push mission from V.2. The Germans had to capture one of the objectives on the Soviet side of the board, located around a small village
I tried to match the terrain to accounts from the actual battle involving the 35 panzer regiment

So nice and peaceful.

Or perhaps not.

Three defensive belts, we ran out of trench lines and had to improvise.

Above are the Soviet defenses in three lines of fortifications after the preliminary bombardment, a few guns and infantry were destroyed but no major losses.

Now thats an attack force.

Brummbars lead the way.

The German force pushes forward.

We ain't scared.

Smoke the 57mm AT guns.
The first trench line is devastated by massed tank fire, but still repulses an assault by the Brummabars and capture one of the beasts.

The infantry in the first trench line didn't last to long on their own.

The PzGrens are in the trenchs, not on a road.

However another assault my the panzergrenadiers and Brummbars route the first defense line and move on towards the more powerful second defense line.

Taking shelter against the hill, seems like a good idea.

Yes a really good idea.

The Panzers push hard on the left flank but decide to wait on the Pioneers and Panzergrenadiers to gap the minefields.

I had hoped to roll right through the second line, not to be.

The Soviet tanks come on in full force.
A hasty assault by the pnazergrenadiers and Brummbars on the right flank fails in the minefield an the infantry are cut to pieces by the Soviet defenders. Things are not so easy for the attackers.

"Drive them back!"
Stuarts move up to support the weak third line.

The Soviet armor begins arriving in mass the stop the German attack.

The mobility of the Germans came into play.

They could reposition very fast.

The poor pioneers struggled with their minefield.
The Pioneers and Panzergrens struggle to gap the minefield with the Soviet defenders pouring fire into them. (the pioneer really failed four attempts to gap the minefield) However the volume of tank fire eventually thins out, then breaks the Russian defenders.
When the tough second line collapsed so did the Strelkovy.

Both sides daring the other to move on top of the hill.

And all the while the Brummbars trudge on.

They even nab a T-34 or two.
With one last push all across the front the Germans break through the last defense line on both the right and the left flank. The two opposing tank forces finally meet in a violent melee around the objectives. Both infantry forces are spent and its the tanks that will win or loss the battle.

The panzers make the first move.

Things look bleak for the Soviet armor.

But their armor is still tough.

The Stuarts surround the Brummbars, but with old hen & chicks can't fire.

The next few turns saw the Brummbars move past and shoot the stuarts, then the stuarts moved up 6 inches and go for a flank shot or two. But the Soviets ran out of stuarts before the Brummbars.
And though harassed and eventually knock down to just one vehicle by the pesky stuarts the Brummbars take the objective and complete the attack. But just like in reality the German force is entirely spent, the Panzergrenadiers are decimated and the panzers depleted to the point of ineffectiveness. The Soviets lost the defenses but exacted such a heavy toll that the offensive in the north is done.

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