Back to the stronghold

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I know they are in here somewhere…

At the recent meeting of the Israel ASL club, Josh and I played scenario T3 Ranger Stronghold. This was a scenario I had previously played against Ran, when I was the Germans. This time around, Josh took the Germans and I tried my luck with the USA Rangers defenders.

Unusually, in this scenario the attackers set up first. Josh took the high ground with a tank and an infantry fire group. So, I set up out of sight, and waited.

Essentially, the Germans have six turns to wipe out the defenders. When I played it with Ran, I did not get much out of my tanks, and took too many risks when advancing. Josh’s play was much better, though I suspect he would have liked more out of his tanks. More on that later.

So, on turn one the Germans advance. I hold my fire while his troops scuttle forward, a squad at a time. My 10-2 leader plus MMG eventually decide to fire when an enemy leader pops into view, but we only wound him. He spends the rest of the game being a thorn in our side by acting as a rally point.

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Just before the Germans get up close and personal

I probably held my fire too long, and paid the price. Although I was able to keep out of harms way for the first and second turn, by turn three Josh’s forces were engaging mine, and there was little room for escape.

My left flank was shored up by my 10-2 leader, crew and MMG. The MMG broke and then became irreparable. Great… My right flank MMG and squad defenders took out a few attackers, but eventually were overrun.

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Say goodbye to that MMG

In turns three, four, and five, Josh’s forces closed in and slowly but surely ground down my defending forces.

There was a brief flurry of resistance near the very end. A battle hardening result gave me a hero and a fanatic squad. Guess who got hit with a sniper? (Despite the relative SANs, I think I generated one sniper attack in the whole scenario, and Josh had double that.) That force did delay the enemy.

And one DM squad had managed to rout into the VP area, so if I had rallied it on the last Rally Phase – I needed a ‘4’ or less – I would have won the game. Of course, I blew it. But it would have been unfair, as Josh’s meatgrinder had been effective, and he deserved the win. However, to get to the last turn and for the game to turn on one roll, was a fitting end because it reflected the intensity (as usual) of the ASL experience. It really is quite remarkable.

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You can never have too many markers

Looking back, Josh pointed out one decent shot I missed – because I did not think there was line of sight. I was disappointed that I was still missing such opportunities, but probably should be pleased at the improvement, since I had missed many more in the past.

There were also a couple of crucial occasions when I made the wrong choice between fire and movement. That having been said, I dispatched both enemy tanks with bazookas, so something was going right.

Daniel and Ran were playing scenario OB2 Point 247, being a Sedan 1940 encounter between French and German forces. I am hoping one of them will provide a short session report, separately.

Thanks to Daniel for hosting.

Next month, it’s our ASL Israel Event, so three days of ASL goodness beckons!