Zig and I got in a last big bash of the year this (Saturday) afternoon. We ended up playing a slightly modified "Encounter" scenario. Both of us used 850 point lists and neither of us used an A or B option.
Full Morotized Rifle Regiment, minus the engineers
2 T-72 Battaltions
Airborne Assault Battalion w/ 3 Mi-8
4 2S3 Batteries + FO
1 Su-25 Sortie (ICM4)
Leopard 1A4 Battalion
Marder 1A2 Battaltion
1 Gepard AA Battery
4 M109 Batteries
2 F-4 Phantom Sorties (ICM3)
Orange splotches are objectives
I was entering the field from the bottom of that map, we'll call it the "east" edge and Z's West Germans arrived from the top edge. He had one battalion on the map to start with - his Leopard 1A4s, situated about the westernmost town.
Half of my stuff
Da other half
My plan involved an MR Battalion and Tank battalion moving down the southern road, capturing the objective in the town on the way and ending up at the three-road intersection halfway up the board.
Another MR Battalion would head almost straight up the center, capturing the objective on the hill near my edge, then set up camp in the woods overlooking the bridge near the center of the map. A group of T-72s would cover their right, heading to the objective on the overlook.
The Airborne Assault battalion was set to arrive deep in the back on turn 4 and capture the objective way back on his side of the map. My third MR battalion was set to flank march in from the right (north) edge on turn 3 and head to the bridge.
Turn 1 - the tide rolls on.
Turn 2. More shuffling forwards. Z is moving his Leopards towards the bridge. Feh.
Turn 4. The Doggone M48 battalion flank marches in right where I wanted to go. The German aircraft controller calls in the F-4s.
My flankers also get into the game. Unfortunately the panzers have already set up camp on the far side of the river and start shooting right away. 3rd battalion didn't last very long.
The first Phantom sortie was aborted twice by my SA-9-packing BRDM but made it through the fire on turn 5 and plastered the 2nd Tank battalion, sending it into a full retreat. BOOOOOOOoooo.
The air assault goes off without a hitch. The infantry inch their way to the objective.
At this point I've lost two battalions and caused very light casualties to the Germans - a few M48 stands. This isn't my first rodeo but jeez this sucks.
The fecking F-4 returns to harangue the Motorized Rifles. I think Z actually whiffed the attack run and caused no casualties.
The T-54s attached to the MRs take out two of the M48s! Choke on that, good guys! A regimental recon platoon manages to get the Su-25 to respond; Froggy unleashes a hail of cluster bomblets and take out another M48 platoon. The battalion flubs its morale roll and routs. It's back to being even!
The focus shifted to the right side for a bit. My remaining T-72s pulled off a change order and went WAY wide north, but not wide enough. The cursed Leopards behind their cowardly smoke screen of shame were in range and caused a handful of casualties, causing yet another rout. I did start throwing up a smoke screen in front of his Marders - I've seen what HOT missile can do and they are nasty.
** An aside ** A gamer checks the range very carefully in a situation like this and makes damn good an sure the T-72s can't be hit by the lame-ass Leopards. I'm not kind of guy. Maybe I rely too much on "Eyeball Mk. I" but positioning the tanks 18.1" away from the Leopards just to skirt a game mechanic is quite simply to gamey for my taste.
While that was going on, I'd managed a change order on the far left MR battalion and pushed them forward to flank the God-forsaken Leopards. I managed to get close enough to close-assault them, but was turned back for my efforts.
Back on the other side, the Marders broke through the tree-line. I called in all available artillery and managed a suppression or two. The two T-54s at the front of the woods somehow evaded three incoming Leopard shots and killed one in return. An ATGW vehicle also managed a kill with one of its missiles! Hooray for dead Leopard tanks!
The Marders close assaulted the Motorized Rifle battalion. Turns out, I had a bunch of swarthy battle-hardened SOBs in those woods because I won all three assaults, to NO losses!
Small victories. Take them where you can. You can see that the Leopards had their revenge on the missile vehicle and the T-54s.
A couple more shots at my MR battalion in the center caused them to rout, leaving me with two of six fighting battalions. The Poles quit the field, even though we had five of six objectives captured. Too aggressive I suppose.
The fight was enjoyable. It went 14 turns, which is long for us. I really do not like smoke screens. I need to start with counter-battery fire I guess to take out his M109s. Maybe next game we'll work on that. Since I really had dominated in terms of objective captures, I should have turtled and gone defensive, but I just wasn't thinking.
We went to see The Hobbit later in the evening. It's good. Go watch it.
Merry Christmas Everyone! I hope Santa brings you all kinds of good toy soldiers!