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Monday, 23 January 2023

29 Let's Go! Delaying Action at Arthaney, (Map 2) Turn 6 & 7 and Campaign End

 After a bit of a break, it is back to the 29! Let's Go! campaign.  The campaign has seen me inch forward very slowly and the American advance is in real trouble.  After a series of fights around La Cambe, the US moved forward to Arthaney, where an initial probe against German positions was rebuffed.  While the US forces were reorganising themselves, an allied air attack struck causing more US casualties.  The high casualty rate so far and the air strike has led to Col "Pop" Goode losing impetus.  Despite exhortations from both the Brigade and Division commanders, Col. Goode is thinking that it might be time to dig in and wait for more support.   

Meanwhile in the German camp, the Wehrmacht has moved a number of unit over the bridge and contact is now re-established with the HQ in Isigny. In a final effort to break through the German lines and advance, Col. Goode orders Captain Ford, commander of A company 175th Infantry to assault Arthenay again.   

As always, the US gets a fresh platoon.  This time it is the turn of 1st Platoon.  1st Platoon is commanded by Lt Gordon, a 27 year old stockbroker, originally from upstate New York, but living in NYC before the war.  He is widely seen as one of the best junior officers in the battalion, being aggressive and dynamic, as well as serving in the short lived 29th Ranger Battalion.  He is assisted in running the platoon by SSGT Hobden, 28, a former textile mill worker from Connecticut.  1st Platoon has 3 squad leaders; SGT Wierbowski, 22 a former butcher from Philadelphia (1st Squad), SGT Erevan, 23, a former linesman from South Dakota (2nd Squad), and SGT Richards, 25, a cinema usher from California (3rd Squad)

                                                 1st Platoon, A Company, 175th Infantry

The US gets 25 support points for this game, which I spend on a Sherman, a flamethrower, a .50 Cal, a FOO and a 60mm Mortar team.

Having seen 3rd Platoon try and take Arthaney, and get cut up in the process, LT Gordon decides to try another tack.  He orders SSGT Hobden to form a firebase on the right flank while he will bring the full platoon forward on the Left flank.  LT Gordon is hoping that the fire will keep the Germans occupied while he can maneouvre for the final assault. 

The table is set up, with the Jump off points marked.  The German jump off point underlined in red is the US objective.

The game is ready to start.  US Force Morale is a lowly 8, German not much higher with 9.

The US begins to carry out the platoon commander's plan.  On the right  flank, SSGT Hobden establishes his fire base, consisting of a, the 60mm mortar and the Bazooka team.  My plan for the Bazooka team was to act as a scout team to draw out the Germans so they could be hit by the fire base.  

Meanwhile on the right flank the US infantry squads start to deploy on overwatch in the orchard.


A sherman rumbles onto the table and the plan is ready - LT Gordon orders his infantry squads forward.  The exposed fire base presents an inviting target for the Germans who appear in the small garden and open fire.  

One of the Bazooka crewmn and a gunner from the 50. Cal are killed and the rest of the HMG team pick up a point of shock.  But the fire base returns fire with both the mortar and the 50. Cal. (the remaining Bazooka team member falls flat and cowers and bullets whistle past.  The return fire from the US caused some shock on the Germans in the garden.

Despite this fire, the Germans deploy another squad into the farmhouse behind the garden and both open fire on the US fire base.  Over time the fire works.  The second member of hte bazooka team is killed, and a number of the mortar team and 50 cal team are killed. Within moments the last HMG gunner flees, leaving the weapon behind.  The two remaining mortarmen yell at SSGT Hobden that they have to leave.

"Sarge!  We gotta get out of here! PVT Weekes yells out.  "We're gonna get killed!"

SSGT Hobden flinched as a german bullet wizzed past his head.  He looked around at the still bodies of the Machine gun and Bazooka teams.  He nodded. "OK - Pack up the mortar and follow me.  we'll set up on the road by the tank!" He jumped to his feet and started to run.   Behind him, the two mortarmen began to lift the mortar, but as they did so, both were cut down by German fire.  Hobden stumbled into the road as a bullet pinged off the side of the Sherman.  what a goddam mess!  

Meanwhile, on the US left flank, while the Germans are distracted, LT Gordon orders his squads forward supported by a Flamethrower

The Sherman tank fires in support, but causes limited damage.  In return a German Panzershrek team creeps forward behind a hedge and pops up taking a shot.   

The shot is highly effective and the Sherman explodes killing the crew entirely and wounding SSGT Hobden who is blown into a ditch beside the road. 

With the loss of the Sherman and the fire support teams, as well as the wounding of SSGT Hobden, US force Morale collapses and the US troops fall back to their start line in the Orchard to try again. 


With another loss, COL. Goode falls further into despair, dropping form Anxious to shocked.  His plan isn't working at all and his 1st Battalion continues to get chewed up!

Despite the urgings from his subordinates, the Col does nothing for an hour or two except try to call up more artillery in support.  Meanwhile LT Gordon tallies up his casualties and polices up the dead and wounded.  The US took a total of 11 casualties from the infantry - 4 men from the 50. Cal, 5 Men from the 60mm Mortar, and the two man bazooka team.  Additionally the whole crew of the Sherman tank were killed.  6 of the Infantry are killed, with another 3 too seriously wounded to continue fighting and two more being patched up.

Roll of Honor

SSGT Marriott  747th Tank Battalion KIA

CPL Tabbot       747th Tank Battalion KIA

PVT Yeats         747th Tank Battalion KIA

PVT Naylor       747th Tank Battalion KIA

PVT Poole        747th Tank Battalion KIA

CPL Sinto         175th Weapons Company KIA

CPL Adler         175th Weapons Company KIA

PVT McAdams 175th Weapons Company KIA

PVT Lester        175th Weapons Company KIA

LCPL Restrepo 175th Infantry KIA


LT Gordon presses Captain Ford for a second crack at the objective.  He is reasonably happy with his strategy, although the firebase could have lasted longer.  Perhaps its time to bring in the FOO. This time I get 29 support points, but as previously, there are problems actually using this many points, so the support remains unchanged at a Sherman, a 50. Cal, a flamethrower, a 60mm mortar and a FOO. 

Very little changes  with the table and the jump off points.

This game German force Morale is 10 - they are soon to be evacuated and have gotten most of their forces across the river.  US Force Morale unfortunately is at 8 - 1st Platoon are not at all keen on having another shot at the enemy, even if their platoon commander is!

This time things are different.  Deciding that the best defence is offence, the German platoon commander orders two full squads forward on their right flank towards the orchard

The LT Gordon orders up a couple of squads to keep an eye on the German advance and orders the FOO team to set up behind the hedgeline

Te first German squad reaches the hedge and peers over.  Americans!  Thousands of them! (well OK maybe 20 of them...)

The Germans decide that discretion is the better part of valour, and head back the way they came after taking a few pot shots at the Americans moving through the Orchard.

                                    Run away! Run away! (Los! Los!)

Both Germans squads, jump over the walls into the little yard by the barn, picking up some shock as they do so. 

Over on the German left flank, a PAK 40 deploys to cover the open ground.

Just in time!  A Sherman appears on the road and clanks its way around the burning wreck of its comrade.  At the same time, SSGT Hobden, his arm in a sling deploys with the 60mm mortar team in front of the knocked out tank.  That will do for a firebase. Seeing the Sherman, the PAK 40 opens up firing several shots over a couple of phases.  The first shot knocks out the main gun and kills the gunner.  As SGT Forest tried to pull the body of the gunner from his seat, another PAK 40 round knocks out the MG and causes shock.  A third round shocks the crew further and they bail out.

Meanwhile, LT Pryor, the Battalion FOO, finally gets a connection to the regimental mortar battery and orders "Fire for effect!".  Mortar rounds plaster the small hamlet throwing shrapnel in all directions causing some light casualties in the PAK 40 crew and a German squad in the building.  

As the barrage keeps the Germans pinned in place, LT Gordon orders his platoon forward, supported by a flamethrower team

However, the barrage is short-lived as Sigur ends the turn with a chain of command dice.  I am short a Chain of Command dice by one point, so can't keep the barrage going.  But the US Infantry move forward, using marching fire to good effect.  The German Platoon commander, in a scene more suited to a Laurel and Hardy movie, tried to order two squads through the barn door at once, with predictable results.  Realising that that way madness lies, he orders the two squads back to line the walls of the little garden.  The US 3rd squad takes heavy casualties including SGT Richards who is wounded. 

But while the Germans are focusing their fire on 3rd Squad, LT Gordon pushes his flamethrower team forward through 2nd squad.  The flamethrower opens up on the walled garden....

....with somewhat limited effect!

The Germans in the walled garden are a little singed and a little shocked.  But while the US infantry keep the German's head's down, the flamethrower takes another burst.

This is more deadly with several Germans soldiers incinerated and more shock.  An intense firefight is now developing around the little walled garden.  Bullets whizz through the smoke and the flame, and the US forces are slowly whittled down.  The flamethrower team is wiped out and LT Gordon takes a bullet in the left eye, killing him instantly.  Unable to crack the German defence, SGT Erevan orders the two remaining US Squads to fall back, as their force morale collapses, but he is shot down before he can move.  Just before the US finally withdraw, PVT Dewey raises his rifle and snaps off a shot....a shot that kills Feldwebel Zausel

As the US forces fall back to the Orchard, the surviving Germans try to catch their breath and process what has just happened.


Well with that US defeat, the game - and Campaign is over!  Colonel Goode throws in the towel.  Convinced that a massive German counter attack is on the way, he makes no further advances beyond La Cambe.  His personal morale collapses and he is too shocked to continue to command.

He is later relived of command and is sent back to the US to manage the US Army paper supply depot.  More broadly the US efforts to link up Omaha and Utah beaches fails.  And while the two beachheads are linked eventually, it takes several days longer than it should, and the US army suffers more casualties.  The Germans have longer to prepare their defensive line beyond Isigny.  

The men of 1st platoon trudge back to La Cambe led by the wounded SSGT Hobden.  Only 14 of the men remain.

1st Platoon takes 28 casuaties, 14 of whom are killed including LT Gordon and SGT Everen.  Another 7 are seriously wounded and 7 more can be patched up when they crawl back to the A Company command post.  The flamethrower team is wiped out and one of the tank crew is killed. 

Roll of Honor

LT Gordon 175th Infantry KIA

SGT Everen 175th Infantry KIA

CPL Torres 175th Infantry KIA

PVT Gambett 175th Infantry KIA

PVT Hestor 175th Infantry KIA

PVT Doyne 175th Infnatry KIA

PVT Lockhart 175th Infantry KIA

PVT Kalley 175th Infantry KIA

LCPL Royce 175th Infantry KIA

PVT Barlowe 175th Infantry KIA

PVT Walters 175th Infantry KIA

PVT Gillespie 175th Infantry KIA

PVT Martinelli 175th Infantry KIA

PVT Andreski 175th Infantry KIA.

PVT Sharp 747 Tank Battalion KIA

LCPL Remmer 29th Engineer Battalion KIA

Overall the Germans lost 6 killed throughout the campaign, including Feldwebel Zausel.

 The German army managed to get 4 companies from Grenadier Regiments 726 and 915 as well as two batteries of Artillery regiment 253 across the bridge at Isigny winning a major victory for the Axis.  The remaining men of the German platoon also evacuate across the river, taking with them a wounded SGT Richards and three other wounded US solders as POWs.     

Overall in the campaign the 175th Infantry had 75 killed including 6 junior leaders and 1 senior leader.  Another 35 were seriously wounded, and were evacuated back to the US.  The 747th had 20 killed and lost around 7 tanks.  2 engineers from the 29th Engineers battalion were also killed.  

All in all a fund campaign, even though I lost every single game!  My thoughts on the campaign as a whole to come.

Monday, 16 January 2023

29 Let's go! Death from above

 The 29, Let's Go! campaign continues.  I realised that before playing he first game of Map 2, I hadn't accounted for the Blue on Blue incident that occurs after the American's capture Map 1.  After the fall of La Cambe, the US troops are attacked by friendly aircraft....

An unlucky platoon from C Company are strafed by Allied aircraft as the move up towards La Cambe.

                                        Men of 8 Platoon, C Company, 175th hit the deck as allied aircraft open fire. 

Although its not necessary to record casualties, I make a roll and end up with 5 fatalities - the loader from the bazooka team, a LCPL from second squad and three privates from 3rd Squad.  News of the attack filters back to Lt Col. Goode's command post and his morale drops another level....he is now back to anxious.  It is looking increasingly unlikely that the US will win the campaign!

Roll of Honor

PVT Mercor         175th Infantry KIA

LCPL Carshaw    175th Infantry KIA

PVT  Adams        175th Infantry KIA

PVT Bocker         175th Infantry KIA

PVT Vallence       175th Infantry KIA

Monday, 14 November 2022

29 Let's go! Turn 5 (map 2)

 The story so far....

B Company had made several efforts to capture La Cambe, but were repulsed each time with heavy casualties among the attacking infantry and supporting armoured units.  Given the company's failure to take the hamlet, they were pulled out of the line and replaced with A Company who were ordered up to the front.  1st Platoon made a cautious approach to La Cambe, but found it deserted except for what looked like battle plans and some black painted broomsticks made to look like gun barrels.  With American forces approaching La Cambe from the flank and front and with the hamlet zeroed in for US mortar and artillery fire, the Germans have clearly pulled out deciding they have held up the US advance for too long. Captain Ford of A company sets up his Company Command post in La Cambe and orders 2 Platoon forward to assault the village 

                                       A Company, 175th Infantry, prepares to get into the war

It's been a while since our last game - I now have a new baby, so time for wargaming along with pretty much anything else is very limited!  But I managed to squeeze in a game at the weekend with Sigur.  Sigur decided to withdraw his platoon from Map 1 so this game was to be the Delaying Action at Arthenay on Map 2....probably a good thing as I don't think either of us could face playing map 1 again! The game from.the German perspective can be found here:

I set up a reasonable representation of the map from the 29 Let's Go PSC.   As with the rest of the US platoon's in the PSC, I don't really need to keep track of the personalities as I get a fresh platoon each turn.  However, I think it adds to the narrative and I like doing it.  So, here is 2nd Platoon:

The Platoon is led by 2LT Jared Acland a 24 Year Old Farmer's son from South Dakota.  He is supported by Platoon Sergeant SSGT Lew Olsen, a 27 year old warehouse clerk from California.  The three squads of 2 Platoon are lead by SGT Eric Wishinski (first squad), a farmer from Idaho, SGT Rick Carney (2nd Squad), a Bank Teller from Maine and SGT Dan "Chief" Waupoose (3rd Squad), the company's only Native American, formerly a hunter from Oklahoma.  For support, I took 3 Shermans and an Adjudant.

As before, they face the original platoon of Germans under command of Unterfeldwebel Zausel.  The German platoon has a number of patched up wounded, but no losses so far.  

The Game

For this game the Germans ended up with a force morale of 9, The US Force Morale was 11 - clearly 2 Platoon were very glad they didn't have to storm La Cambe!

The Patrol phase was fairly standard although the position of several patrol markers made for difficult decisions in placing the jump off points.  The US ended up with one on the edge of the orchard on the left flank, one behind the hedge on the right flank and one on the table edge on the right flank.  The Germans ended up with a JOP in the garden, one in a house and 1 just behind the wall by the barn (note: one hte map the walls are high - we didn't have any low walls so just used the high ones and said they were low!).  The German JOP in red is the objective for the US - they need to take and hold this JOP for the end of the turn.

The US forces began their advance.  1st Squad deployed by the hedge in the orchard, and went on overwatch along with 2LT Acland, while a Sherman rumbled up the road.  With no sign of the Germans the rest of the US force rapidly deployed - the rest of the Sherman platoon on the road and 2nd and 3rd squad on the right flank. SSGT Olsen accompanied 2nd Squad.  Despite their swift deployment, once ordered forward the US infantry slowly picked their way towards the village. The lead tank went onto overwatch, as the other two Shermans advanced in support of the infantry.    

"SGT Forrest - advance your tank forward on my flank!" 2LT Peterson in the command Sherman ordered.  "You first!" muttered SGT Forrest deliberately moving his tank slowly.  Forrest had seen the burnt out wrecks of the 3rd company of the 747th Armored regiment and had no intention of ending up like them. 

SGT Forrest was wise - there was a faint boom and suddenly 2LT Peterson's Sherman was knocked out by fire from an off-table Marder.  The lieutenant and 2 crew were killed, the other two rolled out of the burning wreck and headed back towards La Cambe. That was an unpleasant surprise! 

The tank being knocked out gave the US infantry the impetus to move forward, covered by the remaining two Shermans and first squad on the left.  The lead Sherman reversed to move out of LOS from the Marder.

Sigur now rolled a double phase and deployed infantry in the house and the garden.  They opened fire on 2nd and 3rd squad who were advancing across the fields.  The rifle teams took shock, but the BAR teams are gunned down.  US force morale is slowly being picked away, and the German squads move back out of line of sight.  

In the face of German fire, 2nd squad fired covering fire at the garden and the Shermans fire HE rounds into the building with no real effect (I was hoping to knock down the building or make it unstable enough to force the German infantry out.)  3rd squad moved up on the far left flank and 1st squad, urged on by 2LT Acland, made it to the hedge, then moved towards the walled garden on the left. 

Getting into  sustained firefight with German Machine guns is a recipe for disaster, so SGT Waupoose orders his squad forward in a charge in a vain effort to clear the garden of Germans.  One lucky US soldier guns down the German squad leader but ultimately the US force is wiped out.  US force morale drops further!  

The Germans continue to fire sporadically at 2nd squad, wounding SGT Carney and inflicting more shock.  2LT Acland and first squad move closer to the walled garden to line up for a follow up assault on the squad in the garden.  A shell from one of the Sherman's blasts into the garden, causing some shock and throwing dirt all over unterfeldwebel Zausel who has rushed forward to take command of the squad.  As first squad closes on the walled garden a third German squad pops up and fires at them, again causing shock on the rifle team and killing all but one of the BAR team, who breaks and runs for the rear.  

With the end of the turn, 2LT Acland decides war isn't all it is cracked up to be and withdraws.

US Force Morale:1

German Force Morale:8

So....another defeat for the US!  reviewing the game afterwards, clearly advancing on the right flank across open ground was not the best tactical move.  The left flank provided more cover for the infantry.  Unlike previous games I used overwatch and covering fire more, with some effect and did better with fire and maneuver.  The charge by third squad was a bit of a gamble which ultimately didn't pay off, but then getting into a firefight with Germans to kept moving forward, firing at half effect, and withdrawing, was not going to go anywhere either.  And on the plus side, I did take out one of the German junior leaders who won't easily be replaced.   

Post-game events.

The US took 22 casualties in this game, including the loss of SGT Waupoose. As before, US casualties don't need to be tracked but 10 are killed, 6 seriously wounded and 5 lightly wounded and will be available for the next game (not that it matters as I get a fresh platoon each time).  The Surviving BAR gunner from 1st squad and one of the survivors from 3rd squad are listed as MIA...They eventually roll back into the company Command Post later. two of the wounded survivors from 3rd squad are captured and sent to the rear.

Roll of Honor

SGT Waupoose KIA, 175th Infantry

CPL McWilliams KIA, 175th Infantry

LCPL Sheridan KIA, 175th Infantry

LCPL  Yates KIA, 175th Infantry 

PVT Chapin KIA, 175th Infantry

PVT Ely KIA, 175th Infantry

PVT Serpico KIA, 175th Infantry

PVT Poulos KIA, 175th Infantry

PVT Hervey KIA, 175th Infantry

PVT Torres KIA, 175th Infantry

PVT Wheatley KIA, 175th Infantry.

2LT Peterson, KIA, 747th Armored

CPL Mercado, KIA 747th Armored

PVT Karic KIA 747th Armored.

PVT Markland POW, 175th Infantry

PVT Kostnaro POW 175th Infantry.

Col. "Pops" Goode, is getting shakier and shakier and drops down from Nervous to Anxious.  However, I elect to have the divisional commander give him a stern talking to to focus his mind.  As a result he ends up back at Nervous.

And on the German side, poor Obergefreiter Ralf "Fuchs" Lohse is killed outright.  One of the soldiers in the squad is promoted to squad leader

 So, a nice little game.  The US advance continues to get bogged down while the Germans manage to move more troops and equipment across the bridge to safety.  Next, 1st Platoon will try and take Arthenay in order to get the 29th Division moving.

                                     The battered survivors of 2nd Platoon head back to the Company Command Post.

Thursday, 14 July 2022

29 Let's Go! The Probe at La Cambe (Turn4) Map 1

 Back to La Cambe!

B Company's woes continue.  The three platoons of the Company have each had an attempt to take the hamlet of La Cambe and each time they have been rebuffed. Casualties have been high, but it is time for the company to make one last attempt.  It its getting close to late morning and La Cambe should have fallen hours ago.

Elsewhere the 175th Regiment are not having a good time of it.  Colonel Goode has been shaken by the resistance of the German army and has become a little shaky.  So much so, in fact that he has started to dig in, worried that a counter attack will drive him back to the sea.

At the end of the last game Colonel Goode's outlook had dropped to nervous

Time to get Brig. Cota on the scene!

"What the goddam hell is happening here Colonel?!" The handful of men in the temporary command post jumped to attention as Brigadier Cota stormed in.  Colonel Goode blinked once or twice in surprise.

"General!'re facing stiff resistance on the advance. It looks like the enemy are fighting back.  My lead company have taken casualties and also are reporting 88mm flak fire.  I've sent a company from 2nd Battalion to silence them and am beginning to dig in here, sir.  We need to get more support before we can push forward."

"No, no, no.  Goddam it Colonel.  No waiting.  We need to link the beachheads up immediately!  Get your force moving and take La Cambe.  No digging in.  Movement, what is needed!  Action!  Not siting about on our asses! Get it done Colonel!  Fire the goddam company commander if he can't do his job!"

Colonel Goode blinked again. was the Brigadier mad?  The invasion was going badly and he was sure a massive German counter attack was coming. 

"Don't stand there blinking at me man!" Brigadier Cota shouted. "Get moving!"  

After the Brigadier's tirade, Colonel Goode stiffens his resolve, and his outlook moves up by one.  He is now worried.


Meanwhile further up the road, the men of B Company get the order to attack again....

Captain Whyte handed the radio receiver back to his RTO. Colonel Goode had just ordered another attack.  He looked around at his two surviving platoon commanders. 

"Let me take a platoon forward." LT Derrick the B Company XO asked.  "If you leave it to Hendry, you'll get another platoon chewed up, and Morrison still seems too shaken to be any use.  Captain Whyte thought for a moment, then nodded. "Sure.  Take 6 Platoon - they're mostly intact.  Make up the numbers from volunteers and the company HQ. Get it done Derrick.

So, the Company XO takes 6th Platoon forward.  Derrick was a pre-war solider promoted from the ranks.  The Platoon sergeant remains - S/SGT Kentner.  Two of the Squad leaders are also combat ready - SGT Dean in charge of 1st Squad, and the older SGT "Pops" Herbert in charge of 3rd squad.  2nd Squad was commanded by SGT Connor who took a round to the leg in the first game and has spent the past few games hiding in a ditch by the road.  He has finally crawled back to the company to be patched up by the medics.  His spot as 2nd squad commander has been taken by SGT Ericson from the Company HQ section.

This time I have more support than I know what to do with.  But as mentioned in previous games sometimes having too much support can be a problem as you don't have the command dice to activate everyone.   Anyway, for this game I take 3 shermans, a 50 cal., a 30. cal, a flame thrower and the forward artillery observer. I also give extra BARs to the squads.  

In planning terms I am going to use the FOO to blast a way through any German resistance and try and move a jump off point forward where I can to cut down the amount of ground I have to cover.  I don't generally like using the artillery barrage, but needs must!  So, onto the game!

The Patrol Phase ended up slightly different than before.  I messed up the initial moves and so lost out on my usual base in the house on the right flank.  After some thought Sigur managed to get a jump off point there.  Clearly while B Company were sorting themselves out, the Germans decided to check out the building and take it over.  I did manage to get a jump off point behind the burnt out wreck of the tank that was knocked out in the first game and which has sat blocking the road ever since. 

Unfortunately for me, US force morale was low at 9 points.  Clearly the beating B Company had taken didn't make the men particularly keen to fight again.  By comparison, the Germans, pleased with holding off the entire US army, are at a comfortable 11.  It's going to be tough. Again.

As before the US forces begin their advance.  Given the disasters that have befallen them on the right flank  they decide to focus on the centre and left for this attempt. 

  A squad under SGT Dean and with LT Derrick move up behind the burnt out tank, with a Sherman in support.  There appears to be a lack of Germans so the advance continues.  The squad under SGT Dean rushes towards the farmhouse on the right flank.  They don't fancy a squad of Germans popping up there and firing into the flank.  On the left flank the squad under SGT Ericson appears.  everything looks quite so Ericson orders two men forward to scout out the ground.  More tanks arrive in support.  Everything seems to be going to plan, LT Derrick thinks.

 SGT Dean's squad captures the German jump off point in the building, and the Germans take a hit to their force morale.  

The US advance continues.  The scout team rushes forward....

...while American firepower builds with the arrival of the 50. cal and the FOO.

With a nice base of fire established and the right flank secured, the scouts move further foward...

.... and ultimately bring out the Germans who open fire. But their fire is pretty desultory and only gun down one of the scouts

The remaining scout, who can't believe his luck, hits the deck only to be shot shortly after.

The German forces have now revealed their firing positions 

and the US armored might moves forward. 

The Germans deploy their PAK40 to try and hold of the tank advance.  But the rounds do little damage other than shock the crew, although the gunner is also killed.  With a nice group of Germans in sight, LT Pryor the FOO, orders up some artillery.  Not bothering with a ranging shot he orders "Fire for effect!"

Mortar rounds plaster the ground in front of the barn then the battery adjusts fire until the strike hits the barn itself.  German troops out in the open scarper for cover.

A combat cameraman from the 175th regiment takes a photo just as the mortar barrage lands, while the MG sets up on the right flank.

But my poor artillery luck strikes again and the turn ends, along with my barrage.  I do have a piece of luck though in that the Jump off point in the farmhouse isn't recaptured by the Germans in time, so Sigur is down to two Jump off points. 

 I think about keeping the barrage going but both Sigur and I have enough chain of command points to negate each others actions and, ultimately, he has one more than me so, the barrage remains regardless.  That is somewhat annoying as I could have done with barrage going on for longer. 

While the tank on the US left flank is still taking hits from the PAK40 as the commander tires to switch out the gunner, his companion tank decides to rush up the road in an effort to gain ground.  The PAK 40 switches his aim to this new threat but misses to start with - a blast from the off-table 88mm guns also misses.  The tank commander thinks he's going to make it, when a lucky hit from the PAK40 takes it out, killing the entire crew.  The burning wreck rumbles off the road and into a drainage ditch.

However, the US forces are now emboldened.  I use a chain of command point to move my jump off point forward behind the remains of the tank and deploy a squad let by SGT "Pops" Herbert.  On the US right flank the squad that captured the jump off point in the farmhouse moves forward, as does the one on the left flank. 


As the two squads meet in the road, another squad of Germans appear. 

Having no more chain of command points, I can't bring in another barrage unfortunately - Sigur would just end it, but hopefully this quantity of troops will get the job done regardless. 

On the US left flank, the PAK 40 finally takes out the tank, causing the crew to bail out.  The PAK 40 crew has slowly been whittled down though by tank fire and the supporting  

On the right flank, the 30.Cal opens fire on the Germans in the orchard with little effect.  But this could be it though.  With Dean's squad acting as a firebase, SGT "Pops" Herbert orders his squad to rush forwards.

The Germans are getting worried now.  The remains of the squad in the barn, despite their shell shock, rush around the building, supported by colleagues in the upstairs of the barn.

The Germans in the bunker in the orchard also see the threat and crawl slowly from their trenches, 30. Cal rounds occasionally whistling past their heads. 

Urging his troops on SGT Herbert, can see the end in sight....

But then as so often, things go horribly wrong.  This gets complicated so I'll have to steal Sigur's detailed overview.

SGT Herbert's squad rushes up the road, taking casualties and just falls short, by a couple of inches.  As the German squad vacates its position in the orchard SGT Dean's squad rushes forwards to occupy the entrenchments...or would do if they can get over the hedge!

On the US left flank, the squad under SGT Ericson storms the PAK40 emplacement killing the remaining crew and junior leader.  In turn Ericson's squad is gunned down by the Germans in the barn with SGT Ericson being wounded.

With SGT Herbert's squad on the road stalled by gunfire from both the left and the right, SGT Dean's squad on the right flank assaults into the orchards, checking the entrenchments for any Germans.  Not seeing any, one team of Dean's squad pushes further right through the trees in an attempt to get off the table from that side. 

The weight of fire is too much for Herbert's squad, who break and run. Herbert himself lies wounded as his men flee.  With the threat from the US left flank and centre neutralized, the German squad pulls back into the the orchard, shooting as they go.  This causes sufficient casualties for US force morale to collapse and the survivors retreat once more....

The battlefield at the end of the game


Gah!  So close, and yet so far!  This was another really tense and exciting game, and I came so close to victory.  Taking out the German jump off point in the farmhouse and moving my own jump off point forward really worked well.  That allowed me to have a nice force of US troops halfway up the table, which were a real threat.  But the dice ultimately went against me.  Towards the end when the fighting was at its hardest and my squads were reduced to teams, I never rolled any ones which would have allowed teams to move rather than squads. As such the two teams of Herbert's squad were pinned in place and whittled down.  The other two squads ended up taking a lot of punishment as well.  

My plan to use the barrage was good but as in previous games the barrage just didn't last long enough.  The concept was right it just wasn't executed well.  I could have ended up in a pointless battle of chain of command dice to keep it going, but ultimately wouldn't have beaten Sigur.  Once I used my last chain of command point to move my Jump off point forward behind the tank, I didn't get any more for the rest of the game which made the final push just that bit harder. 

As always Sigur played a blinder of a game, focusing firepower where it was needed.  The early loss of one of his jump off points was annoying but not fatal.  He did lose his PAK40 however, and I get the sense that this time round he was under a lot more pressure.  But ultimately he prevailed and the US are defeated again.

Although 6 Platoon survived the first game relatively unscathed, they took 26 casualties this time round.  13 are killed outright along with one of the engineers and the crew of one of the Sherman tanks. 7 more are too wounded to fight and the remaining 6 crawl back to the US lines to be patched up. 

175th Roll of Honor

CPL Ardle 175th Infantry KIA
LCPL Ryben 175th Infantry KIA
PVT Anderson 175th Infantry KIA
PVT De Souza 175th Infantry KIA
PVT Drake 175th Infantry KIA
PVT Freedman 175th Infantry KIA
PVT O'Reilly 175th Infantry KIA
PVT Hennemann -175th Infantry KIA
PVT Bacher 175th Infantry KIA
PVT McKay 175th Infantry KIA
PVT Williams 175th Infantry KIA
PVT Tennent 175th Infantry KIA
PVT Clutter 175th Infantry KIA

SSGT Wilmot 747th Tank Battalion KIA
CPL Jovic 747th Tank Battalion KIA
PVT Daniels 747th Tank Battalion KIA
PVT Underwood 747th Tank Battalion KIA
PVT Queen 747th Tank Battalion KIA
PVT Trepp 747th Tank Battalion KIA

PVT Gasgoine 29th Engineer Battalion KIA

SGT "Pops" Herbert is captured.  But fortunately for him, the German guards think the old man is no trouble and don't keep an eye on him, so he escapes and makes his way back to the US lines.  He picks up the soldiers medal for his efforts.  SSGT Krychek and SGT Waterman who were captured last game are no so lucky.  LT Gruber and his little tank hand the two men over to the German Feldpolizie and they are on their way to a prison camp in Silesia to sit out the war.  

This is all too much for Colonel Goode.  Despite the chewing out by Brig Cota, he loses his nerve once more and his outlook falls to nervous.

I elect not to have the divisional commander act so we agree that there will be a 1 turn pause which will allow Sigur to strengthen his defences (as if I need that!).  B Company is no longer effective as a fighting unit. Of the roughly 132 combat effective men in the company, 44 have been killed and another half on top of that are too seriously wounded to keep fighting, reducing the company to around 1 and a half platoons.  Of  the senior and junior leaders, Sergeants Deveraux, Corossi, Roth and Croft are killed, and Sergeant Connor and LT Jameson are too wounded to continue to fight.  SSGT Krychek and SGT Waterman are captured. The remains of B Company are ordered out of the line and are relieved in place by A Company who will now try to take La Cambe.  To add insult to injury, Captain Whyte of B Company is relieved of command and spends the rest of the war in England in charge of a garrison service company, flying a desk and dealing with shit.

Captain Whyte once again handed the handset back to his RTO.  
"Everything OK?" 2nd LT Morrisson asked. 
"I've been relieved of command!" Whyte said morosely. "A Company is moving up to take over from us.  We are to head back to the regimental HQ and await further orders.  Form the men up Lieutenant and take them back.  I'll wait here for Captain Ford and give him an overview of the situation....

.... Private Dewey of A Company ambled up the road, point man for the whole company, a cigarette dangling from his mouth.  A Company had been sitting around all morning waiting for something to happen.  There had been a lot of gunfire and explosions up ahead, but no-one really knew what was going on.  Now the order had come down from Colonel Goode to hustle up the road, and so the company had picked up its gear and moved.  Behind him he could hear the men of 1 Platoon talking and joking.  Suddenly he could hear the sound of marching.  Round a corner marched a group of men... although marching was perhaps too strong a word for the shambling mass.  The men were bloody, dust covered, missing weapons, helmets and equipment.  A nervous looking LT was leading the column.
"Damn." Private Dewey whistled, the cigarette falling from his mouth. "You look like you've seen some action." Behind him Dewey heard the rest of 1 platoon fall silent as the battle-weary B Company moved past.  He stopped the LT.
"What's the story, sir?" Dewey asked.
The LT paused for a moment. "I hope you've got your wits about you, private." LT Morrisson replied.  We took a pounding.  The Germans just chewed up our Company.  Good luck up there.  You'll need it."
Dewey looked on in amazement.  "Are the rest of B Company as badly beat up as you guys?" he asked incredulously.
The LT looked at him blankly for a moment, then to the filthy men marching past him. "No private, this is the rest of B Company.  He clapped the private on the shoulder and moved off with his men.
"Damn"  Dewey whistled again.