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 Post subject: Re: Falling back to Riga-The Minsk Retreat
PostPosted: Sun Jan 11, 2015 6:19 pm 
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Turn 3 pics
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Anti tank team and t-34 take out the Panzer...yeah!

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Anti tank gun gets torn to bit ...whoops

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NKVD wiped out, anti tank team moves up.

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German officer moves up supporting the forward SS squad.

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Last edited by Ragnar The Destroyer on Mon Jan 12, 2015 10:27 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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 Post subject: Re: Falling back to Riga-The Minsk Retreat
PostPosted: Sun Jan 11, 2015 8:45 pm 
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Popping the Panzer III was a massive plus for me in game terms, the trucks were getting away so all was going ok at this point. I was however analyzing the scenario was my prime concern, it had been agreed that gazzas army selection wasn't suitable but that aside there were a few things I still wasn't happy with even though the game was still fun and quite close. At this time I am looking to change 3 things about the scenario,
A) The 3 free trucks would have their own command dice, adding the mystery and desperation as far as the dice bag was concerned

B) the trucks initial move would count as their first turn. Reduces the trucks running away especially with the change of C)

C) the number of sections would be reduced to 3 or 4 sections. A truck at full pelt takes 5.3 turns to get across 4 sections I want the game to target around 6 turns.

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 Post subject: Re: Falling back to Riga-The Minsk Retreat
PostPosted: Thu Jan 15, 2015 9:41 pm 
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Turn 4.

German forces were now swamping the beleaguered Russian forces as the Red Armies stalling tactics were failing all over the board. The mighty T-34 headed back towards the road, eager to catch up and support the rear of the truck convoy, firing its MMG at the 'Down' SS unit causing another pin. But the SS unit was made of sterner stuff and went into 'Rally' mode, passing it's command and losing all 4 of the pins on it.

With that, on the next Grey order dice out, the furthest forward SS squad ran towards the board end and triggered it to roll, suddenly Rayner had lost his tank and remaining Tank-Hunter squad (although I gained no points for these) and the scenery had suddenly changed..........

____________________________________________________________________________

As the board rolled, more Russian units were revealed on this section of it. A Lieutenant, HMG team and MMG team were the only pickings for the SS to pick up points from, slim indeed. But, to the delight of the German General, the back end of the convoy could be seen and the chance to disable one of the pesky trucks was at least a possibility.

As the 3rd SS squad came into view, the NCO seized the moment and commanded his squad to open fire on the closest truck. Although the range was great, a pin was caused but would it be enough? Not that the SS squad had time to worry about that as the ground churned up around them as Ivan's MMG targeted the exposed German unit. The HMG team was also targeting a 2nd SS unit as the stalling tactics continued, the 3 remaining truck drivers grateful to there brave compatriots as they disappeared round the curve in the road (1 pin was obviously not enough).

The turn petered out with the German Lieutenant running to support the furthest forward squad while the MMG team moved through the woods towards the Russian MMG team. The Red Army Lieutenant went on 'Ambush' and all other Russian dice went to reserves.

Neither side added to there points tally.


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 Post subject: Re: Falling back to Riga-The Minsk Retreat
PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2015 5:56 pm 
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Turn 4 pics

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Soviet MMG opens up on the pursuing SS.

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Over view of the board showing the new terrain after the roll.

Sorry for the lack and shoddiness of these pics, I clearly had issues when taking them, in a rush for tea no doubt.

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 Post subject: Re: Falling back to Riga-The Minsk Retreat
PostPosted: Thu Jan 22, 2015 4:39 pm 
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I found this in the "archives" from the turn 3/4 combat - a first hand account from a German war correspondent/propaganda paper :

We received word that our best and most prestigious arm of the SS forces in the region were harrying the weak and defeated Soviet forces running with their tails between their legs. I had to witness this battle firsthand to report on our fine elite warriors.

I arrived east of the road where the fighting was taking place just as the pursuing superior Panzer III and infantry came under fire from the vastly inferior Soviet tank and infantry somehow it halted the immutable force of the Panzer advance, the Panzer must have taken damage from another battle previously to have fallen to such a soft foe.

The brave SS close to the smoking wreck of the Panzer were in a furious exchange of gunfire with a hill to the far side of the road, evidently the cowardly Soviet troops took to sheltering behind the inferior tank and the stone & mortar of the past in a wasted building.

The futility in taking shelter from our elite troops was shown to be folly when the real steel of these elite men of the SS came to bear on the what looked to be the supposedly feared NKVD upon the hill, these adversaries were no more in the blink of an eye, muzzle flash and ripping sound of the fearsome MG42.

To the right of I was aware of an SS squad moving swiftly though the woods to emerge and overwhelm what looked to be a puny AT gun and it's weak crew. Fast, brutal and efficient these men give me a pride that swells in my chest.

Somehow the slight Soviet tank is recovering and starting to turn towards the road firing at our men near the Panzer wreck, the coward wont even face them directly!

More gunfire is now ripping down the road at the retreating rear of the trucks laden with the fearful red cowards, in reply the pathetic machine guns of the soviets reply hitting nothing but their own dreams of surviving this encounter.

The battle has advanced out of view and I'm sure our elite will chase the red cowards to victory!

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 Post subject: Re: Falling back to Riga-The Minsk Retreat
PostPosted: Thu Jan 22, 2015 9:39 pm 
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Turn 5.

Eager to impress the German propaganda machine, the Totenkopf were keen to go to even greater feats of bravery and brutality as Turn 5 opened up. As Russian heavy and medium machine gun teams opened up on them, the SS ran fanatically towards there hated enemies, one of the camo wearing soldiers shredded by the brutal barrage of bullets from the MMG while the lumbering HMG struggled to find it's targets. But the 3rd Division would not be denied as the MMG team was quickly despatched, earning the German General a valuable victory point.

Elsewhere SS units were racing across the board to try to close the distance on the trucks who were now finding the roads far more treacherous to drive on. The Russian vehicles having to tip-toe slowly round the blind corners as the road surface became little more than a single file track pitted with fatal potholes.

As word began to filter down the chain of command the Russian forces began to assemble for a decisive counter-attack, the Russian Lieutenant retreated to a more advantageous position. The German Lieutenant however began urging his troops on, oblivious to the possible superior numbers of Russian troops that lay ahead. The Totenkopf smelt blood.


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 Post subject: Re: Falling back to Riga-The Minsk Retreat
PostPosted: Thu Jan 22, 2015 9:50 pm 
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With the death of the Russian MMG team the gap had now closed to 10pts-7pts in the Soviet Unions favour and time was running out. The trucks only had to leave the board and the game was over, luckily due to earlier German victories in the campaign the distance was still in my favour but it was going to be tight. I knew that large numbers of enemy troops awaited me as soon as the board rolled again, and losing a unit would/could be a critical blow, the timing of that roll could be massive as it would see me seriously outnumbered by my enemy but would grant me possibly a couple of shooting opportunities at the trucks (choices, choices). Would the Totenkopf go for broke?

Apologies for the lack of pictures for turn 5 as we cracked straight into 6 as the tension levels were now starting to climb :wink: .


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 Post subject: Re: Falling back to Riga-The Minsk Retreat
PostPosted: Mon Jan 26, 2015 10:01 pm 
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Turn 6.

Despite the fanatical nature of the SS the turn began with a failed command test. The MMG vanquishers, eager to charge the Russian Lieutenant somehow managed to fail their test and instead just stood around hurling insults at the confused Red Army Officer. The German Lieutenant, incensed at his men's sudden lack of activity strode forward with purpose, and triggered the rolling board once again................................

______________________________________________________________________________________

With the rolling of the board Rayner managed to keep hold of his Lieutenant and HMG crew, the roll also uncovered his 'free' Rifle unit and an LMG unit. It also meant that all 3 trucks were once again visible for shooting, the chance to swing the game massively in my favour once again had presented itself. On the down side it meant the Russians were suddenly numbers up.

_______________________________________________________________________________________

As we had our first Russian dice out of the bag Rayner prudently pulled the HMG crew back (an easy kill for any charging SS squad), sacrificing a truck move. The Lieutenant also pulled back to take control of the 2 newly revealed units. His orders were sharp, crisp and direct, and the 'free' rifles opened fire into the insult hurling SS unit, killing one of there number. All 3 trucks had also been ordered to speed up, despite the poor state of the road they again rounded the corner out of sight, the sound of 2 SS units bullets splintering and ricocheting of the backs of the vehicles as they vanished. The LMG squad went to 'down' and the turn ended.


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 Post subject: Re: Falling back to Riga-The Minsk Retreat
PostPosted: Mon Jan 26, 2015 10:07 pm 
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No points scored and all trucks had vanished for good, my chances of an outright win looked to have ebbed away due to some poor shooting from Germany's elite, just when I needed them to prove there worth. This meant that to salvage a draw I would have to resort to a 'kill everything in sight' mentality, but if the trucks got off the board (Rayner did explain this part of the rules to me but I went all 'shark-eyes' about half-way through), the game was over.


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 Post subject: Re: Falling back to Riga-The Minsk Retreat
PostPosted: Thu Feb 05, 2015 5:26 pm 
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Turn 6 pics

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Image
The board rolled to reveal more soviet troops and the 3 remaining trucks.

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the forward SS troops look on ready to spill soviet blood

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Free rifle squad advance towards the Germans as the trucks flee

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 Post subject: Re: Falling back to Riga-The Minsk Retreat
PostPosted: Sat Feb 07, 2015 1:02 pm 
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Turn 7.

With the trucks now having left the board for good the game would now descend into a brutal close-range firefight and bitter hand to hand combat. Now outnumbered, the Totenkopf still attacked with a renewed savagery, gunning down some of the hapless 'free' riflemen. The irony of such an attack however meant due to taking casualties the 'free's' command check suddenly turned them into 'regs', the best unit Rayner now had on the board :shock: .

Three Soviet units now fired as one at an SS unit, 4 of the Germans killed meant a command check (which was passed thankfully). It was the 'regs' that were taking the brunt of fire from the advancing SS but despite a further 3 deaths the brave Russians stood firm. The German and Russian Lieutenants somehow came into range of each other and both came to the conclusion that 'firing pistols is rubbish'.

Turn 7 came to an end with neither side gaining a point.


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 Post subject: Re: Falling back to Riga-The Minsk Retreat
PostPosted: Sat Feb 07, 2015 1:12 pm 
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Let me explain as best I can and how I understand it (I'm sure Rayner will elaborate where I have gone wrong).

Due to earlier German victories the Russian vehicles had an extra board section to clear, this meant they would still need to take a further move to actually officially clear the board. This meant the game would go to a Turn 8 with no trucks to be seen on the gaming table but they would still need to use a dice to clear the board and end the game. Remember, all 3 have to 'clear' the board not just 1.

Turn 8 would see this scenario suddenly unfold. The score is currently at 10pts-7pts in the Red Armies favour. On the board are 5 SS units and 4 Russian units and to get a draw I would need to kill 2 units for no loss of my own. If the first 3 dice out of the bag were Red it was a crushing victory to the Soviets.

Would turn 8 have one of those moments that make gaming so great...........?


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 Post subject: Re: Falling back to Riga-The Minsk Retreat
PostPosted: Mon Feb 09, 2015 12:18 am 
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The trucks leave the board and the SS troops advance.

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The SS march forward towards the free rifle squad.

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The two forces face off for the last turn.

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 Post subject: Re: Falling back to Riga-The Minsk Retreat
PostPosted: Fri Feb 13, 2015 9:07 pm 
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Turn 8.

The end came swiftly to the Russian HMG team as Grey was the first dice colour out of the bag, the crew unable to target the onrushing SS squad quickly enough and superior German numbers won through. It was the same story the other side of the road as the SS Lieutenant charged his opposite number, the Russian rushing his shot, the Totenkopf man didn't leaving the game hanging in the balance as 2 red dice saw 2 trucks now leave table edge.

The score now stood at 10pts-9pts in the Russians favour but the battle was tied as a 2pt winning margin was needed for outright victory. I could only draw, Rayner could take outright victory by killing the only unit within range, the SS Lieutenant.

Red dice out, 'Regular' Free Rifle Unit to charge the German, command roll........................................



....................................double 6. FUBAR!!!!!

A roll of a 1 which followed meant the Red Armies best unit now fired at it's own men, the LMG unit. 6 Russian casualties later and on the very next dice the last remaining truck exited play and the game ended in a draw.


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 Post subject: Re: Falling back to Riga-The Minsk Retreat
PostPosted: Fri Feb 13, 2015 9:17 pm 
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As endings to a game go this was probably one of the best I've taken part in. The SS are truly a 'lucky' army at this stage of our campaign as the Russians struggle with there poor leadership and sub-standard troops, although as we progress I expect to start struggling in missions/scenarios. A draw was always the best I was going to get especially after the mountain I was going to have to climb revealed it's size after Turn 1.

Army Group North takes a break as we move South after one last battle, and if things go well on the planning front we are going truly epic. We are talking Stuka's, Marshland, Woodland, a classic 'blow-up-the-bridge' scenario. Oh, there may be tanks as well :wink: .


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