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Subject: Verdict at Nuremberg I - J143 Circle of Doom (again) rss

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Wu Wei
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Verdict at Nuremberg I – J143 Circle of Doom (return match)

This is part I of the mini-campaign Verdict at Nuremberg. You get campaign victory points for winning each scenario and bonus points for controlling certain buildings. Also, there is a Force pool where you can choose from different units in each scenario, but each choice limits your options in the following scenarios. I'm familiar with the area around Nuremberg, so this mini-campaign caught my interest.

This is the second time we play this campaign. I won the first one after the second Campaign Date, so we actually only have played two thirds of it. I hope I can make it to the last date as the American attacker.

Nuremberg, Germany, 16 April 1945. As I said, I play the American attacker and have to control all gun locations. I don't have much experience in playing with the standard 6-6-6 Americans. They will break a lot, and I don't really have a plan. I have a lot of hts and tanks, but against German 88s that isn't a good thing – if I lose 40 VPs, I lose the scenario!

From my force pool, I chose the FB. Air support is not the most intuitive choice for a scenario in which I have to go against AA guns, but an 88 that shoots at a plane can't shoot at one of my tanks (and might lose concealment in the process), and if I lose it, it's only 2 VP.

My opponent did the smart thing and chose the additional gun. And as I write this, I have an idea I should have had when I played this scenario as the Germans: Convert some of the “?” in the OB into 5/8”-”?” and place a few additional “guns” on the map. This would have been brilliant! Why do the good ideas always come after it's over?

American Turn 1:

My opponent put a lot of his troops into the village in the west – but I will go through it nonetheless. In the MPh, I start with a halfsquad in the west and move towards the first gun. It doesn't fire, so I continue with a M24. This time, the gun fires, but it's only a 37LL and don't penetrate my front armor. I stop and fire back, and I even hit against all odds – and then I roll a 10 on the IFT for no effect... The last halfsquad follows.

At this point, we had a “visitor” in our game who rolled some dice and started to draw counters onto our map. He wouldn't leave when asked, and it took us a few moments to figure out how to lock the room and kick him out. We had spectators before, no problem, just don't be an asshole!

After this interruption, I continued my MPh with the halftracks in the west. I used platoon movement to perhaps fire with them as a firegroup, but ultimately, I broke them up, drove on with one of them, and partially unloaded the other in front of the village.

I drive the halftracks from the north cross country to circle the village from the east. I don't want the units there to reinforce the guns. The hts are followed by my second M24. It stops above the valley and fires on the building across. Thanks to the gyrostabilizer, it hits, and the squad there loses concealment.

I provoke the remaining guns with my armored cars, and one promptly fires. It misses with the first shot, but then it hits with intensive fire. It's a 88L, so the AC burns. At least I know now where it is.

I advance a halfsquad into CC at the western gun, but it is inconclusive. At least, it can't fire next turn.

German Turn 1:

The Germans have 5 VP (40 needed to win). But that's ok, I'm quite content with the situation I'm in.

In PFPh, the Germans fire at my ht in 22R2 and break the squads in it and stun the crew – I should have gone BU (an error I will repeat later on)!
A HMG appears in 22Q6 and tries to kill my ht. After two hits that don't do anything, an attack on the IFT at least results in a pin.

In the MPh, the German reinforcements enter the map. In the DFPh, I eliminate a dummy stack. And I lose the Melee at the gun.

American Turn 2:

Yay, reinforcements! I don't roll the 1 I would need to get my air support yet, but I didn't really expected it. I will get it eventually, even if it is on the last (7th) turn.
My M24 in 24U1 breaks the gun crew in 24T0, but a sniper pins my HS there, so it can't take control of my first objective this turn. But “aufgeschoben ist nicht aufgehoben” - I will get it, and the delay there doesn't hurt me.
In the MPh, I move around a little in the west and the Germans break a few of my squads – I made the same error again and didn't go BU with my halftrack. “Lernen durch Schmerzen”.
I use ESB to have enough MP to move one of my big Shermans, one with a gyrostabilizer, into bypass of 24S7/24S8, and take a shot at one of the PzIV. There was a lot of confusion about gun duels – I will have to re-read those rules in a quiet moment... Ultimately, I kill the PzIV, but when I checked the rules after we finished playing for the evening, it turned out that there was no LOS, and we put the PzIV back on the board. Strictly speaking, this is against the rules, but in this regard, I'm in favor of handling the situation in a way that feels fair.
I unload a few squads and move forwards, but they all break. A morale of six is no fun! The rest of my reinforcements more or less move into place, and the only notable event is that the two German squads on board 22 lose their concealment as they fire on a BU halftrack. Since all the guns are unconcealed, too, I now know where all the Germans are (or so I think at the moment – it turns out there is still a lone concealed leader on the board!) and can move a little bit more freely.
I make no further progress.

German Turn 2:

In the PFPh, the Germans don't get a Panzerfaust, but the HMG finally, after firing for a few turns, kills one of my hts. It even still had a full squad on board. That wasn't necessary!
The 88 on board 22 malfunctions as it tries to fire on my infantry. Good! But in the MPh, I take a long range shot with my big Sherman on moving German infantry and break my gun, too. Bad! I manage to kill a PzIV, although I waste a shot that had no LOS.
In my DFPh, I eliminate a dummy stack. My rifle fire is inconclusive, but as the last shot, I fire my
infantry mortar and land a critical hit on the malf'ed 88, and eliminate it. One in four objectives completed!

American Turn 3:

I feel quite comfortable in my position. I will achieve my second objective this turn, and then it's half the work done in just three out of seven turns. Without the VP limit, I wouldn't worry any more at this point. But I have to be careful, or I will lose that way.

I manage to rally a few of my squads, deploy one in a ht so that I can go tank hunting with one HS and use the MMG to defend the bonus building, AND my air support arrives!
In the MPh, a lot of hts are recalled. I take my second objective.
I try to rush the last 88 with infantry, but it turns and fires. It hits, and my squad breaks, of course. But when it intensive fires on another halfsquad, it malf's!
I move my big Sherman out of the valley and try to go hull down on the remaining PzIV, but I roll a six. It doesn't matter, I kill the Panzer.
Since all the squads guarding the bridge on board 22 have already fired, I finally dare to cross it, thinking that I don't have to fear anything. But suddenly, a lone leader jumps out of nowhere for a street fighting ambush! Luckily, he doesn't get an ATMM, and I survive the attack. I move the halftrack also, planning to get the second bonus building with its passengers.
In the RtPh, I declare No Quarter – I don't want to get into CC with prisoners attached. The CC is inconclusive, with a CX hs against a crew, it can take a while.

Analysis so far:
I have made three turns out of seven, and have control of one gun position and eliminated a second one, that's half of the objectives I need! I'm in melee at a third gun with a 50:50 chance of winning it, and I'm in a way better position to reinforce it than my opponent.
My opponent has only one undisturbed gun left, but while the 37L is quite deadly against my infantry (IFE 12), I can take it head on with my Shermans. The only thing that slightly bothers me is the Jagdpanzer – that thing is dangerous!
I might still lose this scenario, especially if the JgPz gets lucky and takes out a few of my tanks, but it's not likely.
As kind of worst case: I might lose the ht and AC I have on map 22 – driving them there was kind of reckless – as well as my plane. That would bring my opponent to 25 VP. Then, the JgPz would need to kill three of my tanks (Shermans or Chaffees), or two tanks and a little bit of infantry or jeeps (there is still a German HMG and a 8-1 leader around!). That's possible, but as I said, not very likely.

German Turn 3:

I rally a few halfsquads and destroy the malf'ed gun of the big Sherman, so that one is recalled.
In the PFPh, the German HMG hammers at my MMG in 24S8 and gets ROF approximately 30 times. It only results in a PIN, though.
In the MPh, I finally get to use my air support. As the Jagdpanzer fires up its engines, I swoop in from the sky, survive the AA fire from the 37L, and commence a point attack. My first TH roll is an 11. The second one is a 12! I drop the bomb, too, and manage a near miss, but the Jagdpanzer survives. So much for air support...
The rest of the turn is uneventful. Even the CC continues.

American Turn 4:

I rally my units in 22O10, and break the squad in 22Z2 in the PFPh. In the MPh, a lot of my AFVs have to leave the map, and one of the halftracks falls victim to the Jagdpanzer. The German victory score increases to 18.
I move a few hs to reinforce the Melee at the 88, overlook a LOS and get hit by the German HMG. The leader becomes heroic, but the hs breaks.
My tanks move in for an attack on the 37L.
The CC continues.

German Turn 4:

So far, so good. I'm in no hurry, and I'm in a good position to capture the last guns. But I have exposed my backside. If I were the German player, I would use the units in 24P5 and 24O5 to launch a counterattack to recapture the 37L in 24T0. There's only 1.5 of my own squads in their way, and it seems to be the best way to win.

In the RPh, the broken German leader rolls boxcars and decides to slip off, but the broken squad in 22BB2 manages to self rally.

In the PFPh, the last German gun again hits my Sherman, but the shot bounces off harmlessly. And what astonishes me is that he uses the Jagdpanzer to shoot at my squad in the building instead of going tank hunting!
The Germans move towards the gun and the bonus building on map 24.
In the DFPh, I unload my Shermans' guns unto the German 37L, and manage to break and then eliminate the crew.
The CC around the German 88 continues for another round. I only need a 9 to kill that crew, and I missed it the second time now. This is annoying!

American Turn 5:

Not much to do. I drive one of my Shermans up the hill and into the woods to prevent the Germans access to the 37L. It bogs, but in a nice position. The Germans shoot a Panzerschreck at it, and even hit, but because I am hull down behind the wall, and it is a hull hit, I survive. The other squad doesn't manage to get a Panzerfaust into position. So far, so good!
My other tanks stay in the valley, but I move them so that they can fire point blank up the hill at the gun, should the Germans manage to get there.
I take a shot at the Jagdpanzer with a bazooka, but miss, and try to get into CC in the APh, but don't make the PAATC.
And I finally win the Melee around the 88.

At this point, my opponent folds. 5CVP for me!

Final analysis:
I think the main problem for my opponent was the placing of the guns. The bonus gun in 24T0 was practically gifted to me, taking it took hardly any resourced I could have used otherwise. Placing one of the 88s in front of the Regnitz instead of behind it was also rather dubious.
In his place, I would have tried a counter attack beginning with turn 4. The Jagdpanzer was still good for a few VPs.

All in all, this scenario is a lot more demanding for the American player than for the German player, but also more fun.
My AFVs tended to get in each other's way, and the terrain makes it very difficult to manoeuvre. There are a lot of choices to make, and some times, I even chose to do nothing, because doing anything seemed the worse option – which means I made wrong choices in a previous turn.

I'm looking forward to the next scenario.
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Roger Hobden
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Nice AAR !

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Stephan H.
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Once, just ONCE, I'd like to shoot at a tank and actually hurt it. My game plan was basically just making the American advance as costly as possible to get to the 40 CVP win condition, which had lost me the game as the US player. But if my 88s don't hit and my squads can't pull a single panzerfaust out of their arse and if all attempts at streetfighting ambush fail, that plan kind of doesn't work!

Well, maybe Three for the Third will be more kind to me. Lots of distance to go for the cheeky lime-green race car drivers.
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Al Cannamore
United States
Eagle River
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Taschenschieber wrote:
Once, just ONCE, I'd like to shoot at a tank and actually hurt it. My game plan was basically just making the American advance as costly as possible to get to the 40 CVP win condition, which had lost me the game as the US player. But if my 88s don't hit and my squads can't pull a single panzerfaust out of their arse and if all attempts at streetfighting ambush fail, that plan kind of doesn't work!

Well, maybe Three for the Third will be more kind to me. Lots of distance to go for the cheeky lime-green race car drivers.

Play me and you'll get your wish :-)
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Wu Wei
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Taschenschieber wrote:
Once, just ONCE, I'd like to shoot at a tank and actually hurt it. My game plan was basically just making the American advance as costly as possible to get to the 40 CVP win condition, which had lost me the game as the US player. But if my 88s don't hit and my squads can't pull a single panzerfaust out of their arse and if all attempts at streetfighting ambush fail, that plan kind of doesn't work!

I didn't have a decent plan, but what I had boiled down to: "Don't drive a Sherman where an 88 can shoot at it." It worked.


Well, maybe Three for the Third will be more kind to me.

No it wasn't.

It was over after turn 1, after my American tanks, ACs with canister rounds and infantry killstacks all but obliterated the German defenders. The Germans were 100% successful in CC, and they got my FT, but this didn't help a lot.
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Wu Wei
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Verdict at Nuremberg II - J144 Three for the Third (again)
Not long enough to be worth a new thread, so I post it here:

Verdict at Nuremberg II – J144 Three for the Third, aka Drei im Weckla (return match)

Nuremberg, Germany, 18 April 1945.
I continue to play as the Americans. In this scenario, I have to control a building (51Z4) AND have more non-crew infantry VP in a 3-hex radius around 51U3.

I chose option C from the force pool: A M4A3(105) – if it hits, it will be very good against infantry. The scenario OB gives me two additional choices:
I can have an elite HS with a Flamethrower OR a hero with a DC.
I can have M21 MC mit a 81 mm mortar OR a M16 MGMC plus an M8.

Here, I chose the Flamethrower and the M16+M8. The M16 has 24 FP IFE and can shoot at the German FB, and the M8 has at least a chance for canister rounds.


When I played the German side in this scenario, I set up way back, I even had units on the lowest map. And it worked out. My opponent chose a different approach. All his units are within 3 hexes from my setup area. I recognize an invitation when I see one, so I set up for destruction. The tanks on the left side should slip behind the enemy and cut off rout paths, and perhaps I even get a little flamethrower action on the right.
This is the setup:

American turn 1:
I start the PFPh with MG fire from the big (105mm) Sherman, and break the concealed German squad down the road. The Sherman in G8 doesn't hit, but the M16 MGMC breaks the squad in D1. Yay 24 FP IFE! My killstacks on the left break the rest of the Germans there, and my M8 fires his last canister into the wooden building J1K2 and breaks/disrupts all the squads there.

In the MPh, I do as planned and move my tanks behind the enemy. The units on the right (including the FT) assault move forward, but my opponent holds his fire.

In the DFPh, he manages to break the 8-0 with the FT, and stuns my CE Sherman. But my sniper does his job, too, and breaks the squad in O1.

In the RtPh, I capture 4 squads and two leaders. That's more than one third of the German OB!

I don't advance into CC. I'm in no rush here, and 3FP halfsquads against 4FP Germans is not good enough for me.

German turn 1:
I don't envy the German player in this situation:

In the RPh, my opponent gets one of his few good rolls: A 2 for the self rally in I4 results in a nice 8-0 leader.
His prep fire pins a few of my units, nothing serious, and in DFPh, I break two of his.
He advances in CC. I roll a 12 in the first, and he rolls a 2 in the second, but that doesn't change the overall outlook. With only three unbroken squads on the board after just one turn, he folds.

That was a quick game.
I took a small risk in setting up those killstacks. A few bad rolls on my side, followed by a few good ones for my opponent could have ended with a lot of broken GIs. But they would have rallied eventually, something that wasn't true for the reverse case. Cutting off rout paths with my tanks worked like a charm. But it certainly helped that the dice favoured me.
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