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Subject: Operation Veritable Campaign - "The Milk Factory" - Date 1 rss

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Wu Wei
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"Milk Factory" AAR

The "Milk Factory" is the Riley's Road campaign from the Operation Veritable Historical Study. A strong force of Canadian troops has to assault a German position and has to hold it against counter attacks. This is our first try at a campaign game, and chance had it that it is this rather "non-traditional" one (compared to the Stalingrad street fighting that seems to be very popular for campaign games). I play the Canadians in this one, against my regular face-to-face opponent.
Therefore, there will mostly be photographs of rather low quality instead of the clean VASL pictures I normally use.

Campaign Date 1:

Goch-Kalkar-Road, Germany, 19 February 1945, AM

This is the setup the German player sent me, and my battle plan:

Most simply put:
- Rush the tanks and APCs from the turn 1 forces along the flanks and take as much terrain as possible. Move the tanks into position so that they can give smoke cover the next round. Ignore the milk factory.
- Use the foot troops from turn 2 to take the milk factory. They are slow, so they should take the nearest objective.
- See how that goes and adjust forces as needed.

Canadian Turn 1:
That's the theory. In practice, it begins like this:

(Note how clean and tidy all this looks!)

Turn 1 was great: My first tank rushes over the lonely wire defense on the street and, with a 1 on the colored die roll, removes it. My wasp on the western flank drives right up to the AT gun in the building and breaks the crew, so the rest of my forces can follow. There is very little German resistance.

German Turn 1:

Fortune leaves me at the start of the first German turn: It starts to rain! Not only does that slow me down, it removes two of my great advantages: Smoke and WP. That's a bad start, but it gets worse: The German crew with the AT gun rallies and starts shooting! And it hits everything, even my very small, in-motion wasp. The gun only stops shooting when there are no more targets in LOS. It still has ROF! And the western flank is littered with burning Canadian wrecks!

Canadian Turn 2:
(You may have noticed that I haven't mentioned my three creeping barrages yet. That's not going to change: They have no effect whatsoever on the battle.)

My tanks in the West that didn't take the road continue to drive in the mud when they encounter another problem: Mines! Those too cost me a few tanks, others are “merely” immobilized – in a position where they have no effect. Still, I might recover them for future campaign dates.
A few more German AT guns decloak, but this time my opponent mostly rolls average, so I only loose a few AFVs. The infantry on foot slowly moves forward.

German Turn 2:
This is the situation:


The Germans prep fire and skulk.

Canadian Turn 3:
I drive on the Kangaroos on my Eastern flank, and manage to drive up the hill and onto the paved road.
Also, I make my biggest mistake on this date: I drive by the building in HH10 and forget to take it! This will cause much headache in the afternoon.
In the West, the battle rages on, and in the middle, my assault engineers prepare the assault on the milk faktory.

German Turn 3:
My progress:


Canadian Turn 4:
In the East, I sacrifice a Kangaroo to get smoke cover for my approach on the building in LL21 and manage to get a squad into CC. The rest of the Kangaroos drive by, take the Schwanenhof, and what remains of my Eastern force continues to drive on West to take the last victory crossroad and a few additional victory locations.
In the West, I finally take the building E22. It doesn't even is a victory building.
My remaining tanks drive cross-country West to assist my infantry there.

German Turn 4:


I lose my CC in LL21! That's bad!

Turn 5-7:
To make it short: I don't make any further gains in the West, but barely manage to take LL21. Also, I make a few gains in the South. The campaign date ends after turn 7.
A few pictures:






And, as a contrast to the tidy first picture:


This is the result of the first campaign date:

C is under Canadian control.
D is under German (Deutsche) control.

The only big mistake I made was to overlook HH10. The rest could have been better, but I'm content with what I got.

For 19PM, we will have
German: Idle
Canadian: Attack

What a surprise!
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Andrei Shlepov
Russia
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We played Star Fluxx, Star Munchkin, Dixit, and, of course, Bomb Alley.
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Please continue.
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Todd Reed
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I haven't read the post yet, but am curious how you built the turn San tracker device.
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Wu Wei
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Andrei Shlepov wrote:
Please continue.


We are currently in the RePh between 19 PM and 19 night, but it probably will be a while until I have the time to write up Date 2.

mojayhawk wrote:
I haven't read the post yet, but am curious how you built the turn San tracker device.


The parts are laser cut from acrylic glass, and glued and screwed together.

(Incidentally, the way I got "Operation Veritable" in the first place was that I traded it for another one of these turn trackers.)
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Andy Beaton
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Great campaign game.
I had the same problem with rain preventing me from using smoke and my guys were decimated by the Germans before they even got to the road
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Wu Wei
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More conclusions:
The first Campaign Date was tedious and exhausting at times. There are just so many units to move, and so many things to keep track of. I made a few mistakes that wouldn't have happened in a small scenario. But I think this is all part of the learning process.

Another big overlook on my part was the fact that the foxholes count as strategic locations. I only became aware of this on the last turn, and lost a few units (even a tank, I think) because they didn't manage to withdraw from enemy controlled territory.
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Erik
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Really interesting to follow (and I personally prefer real pictures instead of VASL. Looks like a really nice map to play on; reminds me of the good old Close Combat PC games .
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