After a failure of our planned get together on December 29, 2012, four of us (not including me) played the next session on January 26, 2013.
Losses up to 0700, Sept 20:
For the curious, here's the losses of whole units up to the start of the 0700 turn of Sept 20 by division and formation:
5 immobile independent flak
5 independent infantry
2 independent direct fire batteries (PAK)
1 independent mortar
1 independent panzer ersatz
1 KG Goebel infantry
3 KG Jenkel infantry (not sure on this, maybe only 2)
2 KG Greshik infantry (not sure on this one either, maybe only 1)
2 KG Becker armor (I think the armored car & flak, but can't remember)
Division von Tettau:
1 immobile independent flak
1 KG Helle infantry (the best company from that KG)
1 KG Bruhn infantry
1 KG Knoche infantry
5 immobile independent flak
2 KG Kraft infantry (lost near Wolfheze)
1 KG von Allworden infantry (lost on north edge of SDPV)
8 immobile independent flak
1 independent recon infantry (lost in Arnhem)
1 independent recon halftrack (lost in Arnhem)
1 independent naval infantry (lost in Nijmegan)
3 KG Henke infantry (two ersatz low quality, one good ULK company)
4 KG Knaust infantry (excellent companies lost in Arnhem)
2 Group Cold infantry
1 independent reece (jeeps)
1 independent AT
1 504 rgt infantry
1 505 rgt infantry
1 505 rgt mortar
2 508 rgt infantry
4 independent glider crew
1 independent engineer
7 1st Para Bde infantry
2 1st Para Bde mortar
1 1st Para Bde AT
1 1st Para Bde engineer
10 1st AL Bde infantry
2 1st AL Bde mortar
1 1st AL Bde AT
1 4th Para Bde infantry
There are, of course, several step losses scattered about the map. Of particular concern to 1st AB division are the step losses on two out of three 25 lbr artillery, and the step losses on the only two remaining infantry companies and two remaining AT of the 1st AL Bde. All that's on the map for 1st AB division at this point is the equivalent of a reinforced brigade (11 full strength infantry, 4 single step infantry, 5 full strength mortars, 1 full strength 25 lbr, 2 single step 25 lbr, 3 single step AT, 1 full strength engineer, 1 single step engineer, and the reece jeeps still at full strength. The Polish brigade, when it finally drops, might double the remaining strength of the division!
The little bit that I saw of this session:
A group of four, Doug, Myk, Dan, & Roger, played TDC again on Jan 26, 2013, starting with the 0700 turn of Sept 20, 1944. I was just there to see the first moves before I had to leave to work at Santiam Brewing Company. The weather roll resulted in Fog 3, and the roll to reschedule drop zones was unsuccessful with a 9 (Nein!).
The KG Moller (Hohenstauffen engineers) chit was first up (left over from the night turn). Given that there were only 3 engineer companies involved, that was quickly resolved.
The Hohenstauffen artillery chit came up next. One battery failed to get into contact. Another battery got into contact, but then a roll of 9 (Nein!) for fire effect caused the newly acquired contact to be lost. A third battery put a light barrage on a British glider crew company in the open. And a fourth battery got its company bonus, scored a step loss against the single step company from 1st AL Bde at the west end of the SDPV, and placed a heavy barrage in the hex. The hit on the infantry forced the AT gun battery in the same hex to take the S? roll, which it failed. Because the AT battery was already suppressed, that resulted in a cohesion hit. I'd say that AT gun battery looked ripe for an assault.
The Frundsberg artillery chit (just purchased for 2 dispatch points) came up next. And the Germans were plotting how to place a ring of fire around their defenses in Nijmegen. It was going to be tough because 5 out of 7 batteries started this activation out of contact. That's the point at which I left. Myk, who commanded the von Tettau and Hohenstauffen divisions for this session, was kind enough to email me a summary of the rest of the action on the 0700 and 0900 turns.
Myk's report, seen from his vantage point north of the Rhine:
Let's see what I can remember...
The 20th started with FOG-3 weather for the 0700 turn, but it burned off for the 0900 turn. We'll see if that means the Poles will try landing. [Warren's note: the only Polish unit due to arrive on Sept 20 is an AT gun battery]
Von Tettau's progress:
In the north the Germans continued to make good progress against the Red Devils, and we're starting to see individual pockets of units form. KG Lippert has driven to the river, isolating a few units, with KG Bruhn pinning them to the front. [edit from Dan: 0900 - Lippert managed to catch a company in column destroying it.] KG Knoche is driving further east towards Oosterbeek, again planning to drive to the river to pocket more 1st AB. KG Eberwein was held up on the road by strong resistance from a unit of glider pilots, but he eventually succumbed, and KG Eberwein continued its march to Oosterbeek.
9th SS Hohenstauffen continues to do its part against 1 AB from the Arnhem side. The police unit [of KG Kraft] finally succumbed to 1st AB fire but had done much vaunted service in spotting for artillery from its advance position. The artillery allowed units of KGs Spindler, von Allwörden and Harder [Warren's note: probably means KG Kraft, as KG Harder is camped out on the drop zone for the Polish brigade south of the Rhine] to drive a gap in the 1st AB line through to the river and the rail bridge beyond, splitting the 1st AB units. [edit from Dan: At least two British companies were destroyed in Hohenstaufffen’s grinding assault, and now 2/3 of the 1st AB has been removed from the board.]
Outlook for 1st AB Div:
With units being attacked from multiple directions 1st AB is facing complete destruction. And with lots of Dispatch points the Germans can afford to put lots of formation chits in the bag. Command points remain an issue, however, and are limiting German activity to some extent, although the situation isn't as bad as it once was (with 0 points in both Hohnenstauffen and Frundsberg.)
Nijmegen & the Betewe:
In the middle there was the sound of much digging to be heard, as German units continued to prepare for the Allies breaking through Nijmegen. [edit from Dan: Guns are being sighted in on the raised roads to make things hot for the allies, additionally 3 infantry companies are fully entrenched.] In the town itself, the Allies managed to capture only a single hex, but are now only 2 hexes away from capturing the southern end of the bridge. The Germans had good fortune in the chit draws, as each time their artillery was able to get its fist in first, hindering the Allied assaults. Still, there are some formidable units in the defense, so it won't be easy to break through.
[edit: more material in italics added by Dan]
The Guards were the last activation in the bag for 0700, so they weren’t activated to the dismay of the Allies, but they were the first activation in 0900.
The reinforcements including the 3 engineering companies are heading south and are just north of the KG’s artillery North of Nijmegen. The armor pulled off onto a side road to allow the faster trucks to advance, and then resumed moving south. There was a discussion on whether the Engineer units were needed in the North, but the decision was to move them South.
The artillery had a field day getting to fire before the Allied move and effectively stopped it. I burned a lot of command points, but managed to lay down a barrage in Nijmegen and effectively stalled the Allied advance. I think that I managed a couple of suppression and one cohesion hit. On the 82nd's turn those units were pulled off the front line so that they could self rally. There was opportunity fire at the units pulling back, but no additional damage. That said, the Guards, who had the first activation in 0900, did manage to eliminate 2 German one step units. The last unit of KG Jenkel was eliminated by artillery from the 82nd, so now all four units are in the dead pile.
The 82nd is a little spread out now, partially in Nigmegen, and the rest is spread out and mostly in entrenched or improved positions in front of Korps Feldt. The company next to the Devil’s hill strongpoint did move back into that hex to give them a spotting range of 8. The 82nd with their Command points is in an envious position. At the start of 0700, they had 16, which were freely spent so that if they got 12 next turn nothing would go to waste.
Korps Feldt's early morning advance:
In the south Korps Feldt came back in some strength, as all the routed formations returned to the battle, and has started pounding on 82nd AB. Although there were some losses, no formations have re-routed. They have 1 unit in Groesbeek, and more threatening that area. However, reinforcing units for 82nd AB are coming up the road, so Korps Feldt may not have fun for much longer. The questions whether they want to try to swing around the flank towards Mook, and try to threaten from that direction. With only slow moving infantry it might be hard to pull off. XXX Corps continued to drive up the road towards Nijmegen, and are there in some strength. (I didn't pay much attention to that area, however.)
[edit: more material in italics added by Dan]
Korps Feldt somewhat bungled their entrance from off board. Because of fog and restricted movement I entered 2 of the KG in column to give them additional movement, keeping the other two KG off board. During the 0700 turn, the other two KG probably should have entered as well out of column to get everyone on the board and moving.
That's where Myk's report ended, except to note that Dan, who played Frundsberg and Korps Feldt this session, had taken some pictures, but had left his camera at our host Phil's wargame barn. If the other guys chip in some thoughts via email, I'll cut and paste them here. [Just added material in italics from Dan, the other German player.]
Seems like both von Tettau (with 6 KG on map) and Korps Feldt (with 4 KG on map) are skipping the heavy battle, to some extent, while rushing into every available gap. This makes sense, as there is still a rout possibility on Sept 20. The situation probably looks bad for 1st AB Division, as its remaining units, the strength of a reinforced brigade, are now being split up into separate pockets. In the meantime, sounds like Korps Feldt is seriously distracting 82nd AB Division. But XXX Corps must be making up the difference in Nijmegen, as the mass of Guards Armored Division pours up the Club Route into the city.
I certainly look forward to seeing the map in February.
- Last edited Tue Jan 29, 2013 1:05 am (Total Number of Edits: 2)
- Posted Mon Jan 28, 2013 4:33 am
"...the art of manoeuvering armies...an art which none may master by the light of nature. but to which, if he is to attain success, a man must serve a long apprenticeship." -- G.F.R. Henderson
That's pretty much what I like to do with von Tettau and Korps Feldt--feint towards the defenses/surfaces but put main efforts into gaps. A non-routed threat is an active threat and reacting forces the Allied player to expend command points/dispatch points they so badly need to do other things. If there's anything I've learned about this game it's that stretching the Allied C2 system to its snapping point is what the Germans must do. For the Allies, everything has to go right...and if they spend formation chits to chase/defeat the obvious threats (smack the alligators closest to the canoe), then they run out of the ability to deal with the emerging threats (alligators not so close) when they can...and then it becomes too late.
Good example is how Korps Feldt can really make hay against the 82nd ABD drop zones--threaten from all directions and, depending on the U.S. defenses--aim to bypass and head to the canal bridges that have not yet been blown or are open to delay XXX Corps just that much longer. Or pile into Nijmegen to give 82nd ABD fits. Reacting sufficiently to these threats means not much is left to guard the drop zones and losing -1 TQ sure can hurt when it comes to urban combat in Nijmegen!
Timing is the most important factor, unveiling all these threats in a way the U.S. can't react to them all!
I had a plan...
The die is cast.
You say OCD like it's a bad thing.
Mike did a lot better job of remembering what happened than I did. XXX Corps is rolling onto the map as one long endless convoy.
- Last edited Tue Jan 29, 2013 4:41 pm (Total Number of Edits: 1)
- Posted Tue Jan 29, 2013 5:03 am