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This Great Crusade-Part 23

Mark Buetow
United States
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Combat Commander Archivist
Move! Advance! Fire! Rout! Recover! Artillery Denied! Artillery Request! Command Confusion...say what?!
War News from Around the World, Summer 1943

Fighting continues unabated from Europe to the Far East. Allied forces experience mixed results in holding positions and advancing into enemy strongholds.

Bobdubi Ridge, New Guinea, June 30, 1943

A large open area of dense kunia grass ringed by patches of thick jungle greets our Commonwealth colonial troops. Japanese forces pop up in several places as the CW soldiers set out to fight. On the left, they manage to take a key objective after one Cpl. Kapoor arrives to lead a squad into the heat of battle. Winslow appears to take command of another squad which has thus far avoided direct fighting with the Japanese. Suddenly, intel changes and the nearby trailhead becomes top priority. Unfortunately, the Japanese manage to stop the Allied progress and hold them on that day.

Before and after action photos

American Forces Establish a Toehold on the Continent, St. Agatha, Sicily, August 8, 1943

U.S. Force finally began their move into Europe proper this summer by way of Sicily, to claim a toehold into Italy. Hot on the heels of the Fascist soldiers, our boys are steadfast in letting nothing hamper their taking of objectives. While heavy firepower is set against the Italian positions on the hilltops, select squads of men are led up the dangerous slopes and into the line of fire as they seek to take hold of key objectives. One soldier became a hero that day, Lucas whose brave actions helped secure two key objectives even as one other was retaken by the tenacious Italians. In the end, our men prevailed and the Italians lost their positions.

Pre- and post-battle pictures

Game Notes

Scenario M11 is from Combat Commander: Pacific, Combat Commander: Battle Pack #4 – New Guinea. It was going well for the Commonwealth forces until nearing the first Sudden Death trigger, the Japanese drew a Secret Objective which turned out to be Objective 5 is worth 10 VP! (And it was Open). I had Winslow and a squad just two hexes away and ready with an Ambush and three Bayonets! But I couldn't get the Move order. Sudden Death came and I had to pass the Initiative Card to try to keep in it, but the reroll was still under 7 and that was it. Time was up and the Japanese won with 6 VP on their side.

Scenario 21 is from Combat Commander: Mediterranean. It's a drive by the Americans to take objectives from the Italians while being constantly hampered by their nasty mines. Our veteran mortar squad dumped its medium mortar and dashed up the slopes to grab Objective 3 on the right. The Italians dash several units to surround those men and take that objective back. Meanwhile, Lucas, who had been pinned down and suppressed, and had lost both White and a squad with an MMG managed to scrounge and Italian HMG and avoid the mines that had been laid all around Objective 5. He secured that and then dashed down the hill into 4, gaining enough ground for the Americans to hold. Down in the little village, the other US forces had kept up heavy fire form their HMG and squads to keep the Italians dying on the hillcrests. We made it to Sudden Death 8 just as an Italian squad was 1 MP away from Objective 5. He got Op Fired by Lucas which caused the Time Trigger and that was it, though the Americans had 4=1 VP. We also had the Initiative Card so would have won the tie. Americans win with 6 VPs. This one was really fun as the Attacker trying to use lots of firepower to keep the Italians tied up while maneuvering just a few units to attempt to take objectives. Quite a challenge and a close one!

Standings in our Combat Commander Series playthrough stand at Allies-Axis, 27-28.
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