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To Embark Upon This Great Crusade - Part 6

Mark Buetow
United States
Du Quoin
Illinois
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Combat Commander Archivist
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Move! Advance! Fire! Rout! Recover! Artillery Denied! Artillery Request! Command Confusion...say what?!
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Darkness Spreads Around the World in the First Half of 1942
After their unprovoked attack on the United States Naval Base at Pearl Harbor, the Japanese seek to dominate the Pacific. 1942 sees them launch a campaign to dislodge British and Australian forces from the island of New Guinea. In Europe, resisting with all their might, partisan resistance forces fight back against the Nazis who retaliate with bitter reprisals.

A Nightime Nightmare on New Britain, January 23
ANZAC forces were set up on the hill across the bay from the city of Rabaul which was burning from its attack by the Japanese. Silhouetted by the flames, the Japanese soldiers were met with heavy fire as they came ashore. Here is the setup of our Allied forces before the Japanese arrived:



You can see the strong defenses, two heavy machine guns well-emplaced on the hill crests, covering the beaches with a commanding field of fire. Indeed the Japanese were cut to pieces as they moved inland, their leaders were killed. But a wave of Japanese reinforcements arrive and the tables are turned. Working their way up the hill, darkness hindering the machine gun fire, the Japanese advance. One squad is able to destroy the forward position. When more Japanese units arrive on the hill crest, there is a firefight with the ANZAC forces on the opposite hilltop. The hold out valiantly but another squad of Japanese soldiers is able to work its way into the foxhole of the ANZAC scout and mortar squad. The ANZAC forces fall in surrender! Here is the bloody conclusion:



Partisan Forces Fight for Their Lives in Byelorussia, June 8

All over Europe, ordinary men and even women and older children are taking up arms against their Nazi oppressors. In Byelorussia, resistance forces attacked the Germans who responded with brutal reprisals. "Beating the bushes," the Nazi troops attempt to flush out the partisans and punish them swiftly and surely. Shown here are resistance fighters attempting to catch the Nazis first and demoralize their well-trained troops.



Unfortunatley for the partisans, the Germans are able to secure both ends of the stretch of road, cutting off the partisans and rounding them up. German artillery helps in the effort and the partisans are put on the defensive, unable to fight effectively. One valiant partisan woman rushed through marsh and woods to stop a German squad but she was too late. When the road was secured, the Germans had won. Here you see the last valiant attempt to stop the Germans from taking their objectives along the road.




The Emperor's Forces Advance in New Guinea, July 26

Bad news continues to be relayed from the jungle-covered island of New Guinea were British colonial forces are forced back and surrounded near the village of Oivi, Papua. A small village on a gentle plateau will soon be under the guns of Japanese troops moving through the jungle. Allied troops are dug in and ready to meet them as seen here:



The Japanese move forward and along the right, keeping most of their men just out of sight of the Allied troops not he ridge. Fearing they will be flanked, Paranjape moves his men to the right when suddenly the blast of artillery shells begins. Obata and his squad move around to Advance on one of Paranjape's teams but they are ready and Ambush him, killing the Japanese decisively. But it was to no avail. A strong line of additional Japanese platoons arrived and their steady advance into the Allied positions pushed their troops back until finally they overwhelmed them in the jungle edges of the area. The Allies surrendered, another blow to the forces of good in the advancing darkness. Here is the bloody aftermath:



Will the forces of evil continue to spread their plague of butchery or will the determined efforts of the Allies save a world at war?


Game Notes

Scenario M1 is a Combat Commander: Pacific battle from Combat Commander: Battle Pack #4 – New Guinea. Things were looking completely bad for the Japanese before their reinforcements arrived. Starshells were well placed to allow my HMGs to shred their leaders and leave them in disarray. But the two squads that were able to melee our units not he hills turned the tide completely. It was a vicious firefight across the two hilltops. At one point, all three of my units in the foxhole were broken. I Advanced behind the crest to Recover them. But I couldn't cut down the Japanese squads as the moved up the gullies and into hand-to-hand fighting. This is a surrender victory for the Japanese.

Scenario 66 is from Combat Commander: Resistance!. I couldn't get any traction. Effective fire from the Germans and their arty kept us on edge. Melees against the well-trained Germans failed. When the German squad dashed for the last two objectives, I was able to stop it with a Trap (wire) and rushed Katrina and a Section their way. We couldn't get the cards, however, before his Move Order came and he was able to rush the objectives. Holding all five objectives is an auto-win for the Germans by Scenario Special Rule.

Scenario M2 also from the Pacific New Guinea Battle pack. This was a classic case of the advancing forces coming relentless while I had to do a fighting withdrawal. It got to the point where the Japanese had advanced to cover all the objectives, I was one away from surrender, and time was up to 10, with no Sudden Death. A final melee ended it for the Allies but we held on as long as we could.

All three games were nail biters and down to the wire. As with most CC games, they could have gone either way and the tension was enough to tie my stomach in knots!

These battles are part of our Combat Commander Series chronological play through. To see all of the posts in the series, select "CC Chronological Play Through" in the blog Categories menu to the right(on the main blog page). Current standings are 6-9 in favor of the Axis powers.
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