Panzer Grenadier Battles on February 25th:
Desert Rats #8 - Cavalleria
Oh Dear oh Die
Author Poor Yorek
Method Solo
Victor Romania
Play Date 2017-08-03
Language English
Scenario BrAx041

Romanians set up with two T4's each on the E & W high ground (mostly dug-in and on high ground); one sets back holding the road (covers the valley). One on the west is in the regular woods hex (so not dug-in) and so I treat it (playing solo) as invisible (i.e. the Soviets approach as though it is not there - until it fired/or was spotted at 3-hex range). The Soviets push the SMGs and 4x M4/76's towards the western hill; the JSII; the Su-85's and 1xM4/76 approach down the road.

The Soviets approach in a leap-frog fashion along the road. On the west side, the SMG's off-ride in the light woods copse and approach with their armor. Early exchanges lead to two step losses for each side: the JS-II's efficiency and 8-8 AT factor getting in one kill (offsetting the dug-in and higher ground defensive advantages held by ROM). The ROM kill a step of Su-85 and M4.

The ROM T4 holding the woods took a step loss, but was only DIS. The Soviets pushed forward to mount an assault: LDR + 2xSMG + M4/76. All told, a 30+ assault vs a 3-col. In one of those absurdities of fate, the SOV roll a '7' whilst the ROM a '2'. The SOV take a step loss; proceed to fail most of the morale checks (with a DEM on the SMG that didn't take the step loss). Naturally, the ROM make their M2 check! I tried to rationalize it by figuring that the two tanks left in that RED platoon must have: (i) burned out their gun tubes firing HE that (ii) knocked down a large tree that, in turn, knocked down other trees all of which landed on the two encroaching SMG platoons and on the M4/76's. The Romanians were so euphoric that they ignored the shells whizzing by (i.e. made their M2 check).

This threw the SOV attack into disarray as 2/3 of their entire foot allotment was put out of action for a considerable time. On the other slope, the JS-II was in a bit of trouble as the ROM maneouvered for flanking bonuses as the thinner skinned Su-85's were picked off: and, finally, the 2xVAN (ROM INF) arrived (took four turns to roll a 5-6) arrived. The SOV middle had no foot support and, whilst the JS-II was likely to win the purely AT fire battle (despite a lot of misses on both sides to that point) they had to pull back in the face of an INF assault.

It simply took too much time for the tattered SOV SMG remnants to recover (and the ROM/SOV armor on that western hill had pretty much reduced each other to nothing). So the ROM held the road and the Eastern hill; whilst the SOV held the western one and had exited no units (no point in that they couldn't have exited more steps than they'd lost).

NOTES: had that assault gone "normally," this would (or could) have been a different story as the SMG+M4/76 group would likely have reduced the western hill about the time the ROM reinforcements arrived. An interesting battle for the road control would have ensued.

Also note that I played the M4/76's as AC = 4 (not 3 as printed) as per recent APL conjecture. In early turns, two ROM AT attacks missed by '1' so this certainly had a significant role in the scenario.

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