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Subject: El Alamein rss

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Roar Stensrud
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Here's a session report from the last two scenarios of my home made El Alamein campaign. I played the Italians. And the Italians in this campaign represent the "Folgore" paratroop division. One of the toughest units in the Italian armed forces during WWII. The fight they put up against the allied forces at El Alamein didn't fall short of the efforts of forces from any other nation.

Scenario H. Armored Advance

I set up the 47mm AT gun in escarpment in A. My fire group went into B and in C I put a couple of dudes with lousy morale.

The British set up the fire group in A, the Mathilda in B and two low morale men in C.

I rather quickly advanced my C to threaten the british with heavy firepower from range 2. My AT gun was in escarpment and quite safe from fire from the British Mathilda, so the gun too concentrated on the british fire group. But by now the British average morale was so high that I had a hard time acheiving anything with my fire. I did get the occasional pin-results and kept the British in the open for long priods of the game, though. And he also wandered out in a minefiled on an occasion. But as had come to be a standard for this campaign, the Italian bad luck struck hard. Quite early I lost both my LMG and a rifle to malfunction and following brakedown. And when the British managed to flank my fire group, I had no option but to voulentarily panic my sarge and another man who were pinned at that time. The situation improved a bit with the arrival of my reinforcements and in the third deck I got help from a German Pz. IIIH. Just before it arrived, I started firing my AT gun on the Mathilda and actually killed the tank on the first shot. A fitting revenge for the earlier scenario H when the Mathilda, despite its lousy effect number versus soft targets, actually pinned and routed my AT gun. The british had quite few further losses despite my shelling of their fire group, but they never got anywhere near victory conditions. So this was the third Italian victory in this campaign.

Scenario P. Evacuation
We hit the last scenario immideately. In this scenario, the Italians, defending, set up all groups at range 2. The goal is to evacuate wounded men to RR0 to the enemy.

In hope of getting a good fire card at the beginning, I set up four men, including one LMG, in A. Eight men, including the second LMG started in B. And in C I put two men and D received the sergeant and another man.

The British started with two men in A, six, including the BAR, in B and the last two in C.

I started with one wounded man in each group. The idea was to lay down heavy fire with B and possibly A, while I transferred C into D and retreated. Well, "the best laid plans" and so on... I got no useable fire cards. And just a few turns out in the game, my sarge bought it because of a well placed sniper... So much for my transfer-plan.
Luckily the British didn't get useable fire cards either and a wire discard on their fire group made me feel more safe. Then movement cards started to find its way to my hand and I decided to rapidly retreat both my group C and D. Within three turns they were already at range 0. And the British were still not getting movement or useable fire cards. Shortly after, I got terrain for both my C and D and the game was over with yet another Italian victory to the loss of one man only. I think we played through only about 1/4 of the first deck.

The final campaign victory points tally was:
British: 62
Italian: 45

The Italians won four out of six scenarios. Had this campaign not taken place in the desert, I believe the Italians might have won another scenario or two, because countles times during the campaign, I had the British up against the wall with heavy firepower -only to have one or both of my LMGs malfunctioning on a red 4.

The score is also so close, that only one more scenario won by the Italians could easily have tipped the scale.

I have made a few, slight adjustements to the campaign and will soon put an upgraded version in the files section. And we intend to play the campaign again at a later time to get an even better impression of play balance, but out of the about 20 historical campaigns we have recorded CVP statistics from, this is actually one of the closest in points. So I believe it's rather well balanced.

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