Red God of War: People's Avengers
Sinister Forces #15
|(Attacker) Germany||vs||Soviet Union (Attacker)|
|Soviet Union||20th Cavalry Division|
|Overall Rating, 7 votes|
|Scenario Rank: 545 of 555|
|Parent Game||Sinister Forces|
|Maps||2: 3, 6|
|Layout Dimensions||56 x 43 cm
22 x 17 in
|Enter & Exit|
|Scenario Requirements & Playability|
|Eastern Front||maps + counters|
As part of the Soviet "Operation Mars," Col. P.T. Kursakov's 20th Cavalry Division penetrated through the German lines to attack the enemy rear, along with numerous partisan detachments. But when Marshall Zhukov called off the offensive on Christmas Eve after weeks of heavy casualties and little progress, the horsemen found themselves trapped behind enemy lines. Ordered to destroy all their heavy weapons and break out, they ran into motorized security columns put out by the Germans to look for them.
The Germans intercepted Kursakov's horsemen and drove them back into the forests, forcing the Soviets to try again three days later. The remnants of the cavalry division would finally force their way into Soviet lines in early January, after losing all of their horses and most of their men. Operation Mars had been a disaster for the Red Army, but not because its men lacked courage.
|AFV Rules Pertaining to this Scenario's Order of Battle|
|4 Errata Items|
Change the Germans' set-up restrictions to "two combat units per hex". Allow partisans to keep their movement at 2 in spite of the snow.
(Shad on 2010 Apr 29)
The reduced direct fire value of the Heer HMG became 5-5 starting with Fall of France.
(plloyd1010 on 2015 Jul 31)
The morale and combat modifiers of German Sergeant #1614 should be "0", not "8".
(Shad on 2010 Dec 15)
The reduced direct fire value in Kursk: Burning Tigers is 4-4.
(plloyd1010 on 2015 Jul 31)
|More Dead Cavalry|
This scenario pits a mixed Soviet partisan, cavalry and OMB force trying to break through a loose line of German regular troops on the main north-south road. Soviets get 2 points per Cav and OMB and 1 per partisan (although losing partisans does not count against Soviet losses). I set up the Germans, taking 2 HMGs per board, so that they were each stacked with an infantry unit. There are enough leaders for each German stack to get one. The German armored car was filler in a wider gap between infantry units and formed a quick response force. Germans were dismounted but were stacked with enough trucks to load and move if needed. I attacked with the Russian cav in the south where they struck the Germans holding the southern loop of the east-west road, hoping their cavalry assault would help punch a larger hole for others to follow through but it quickly got bogged down and took the worse of the damage. Soviets were hard core and left behind any single units that were delayed by combat results except for the OMB unit that was worth too many exit points to leave behind until just past the halfway point, when if it wasn't moving by then, there was no way for it to reach the east board edge. Cavalry had taken the brunt of casualties, but was also the only elements to reach safety as they went through the large southern woods area and ran past a stack of German infantry that had mounted, moved around and dismounted to wait for such an event. Even with 2 activations, the Germans couldn't stop the Soviet cav, first missing with a direct fire point blank shot and then a 30-factor arty shot. But those 4 exit victory points were all the Soviets could manage. Game ended at the end of turn 9, as the Partisans were just beginning to start taking heavy casualties and there were no more Soviet cavalry units left with leaders that had any chance of running the gauntlet to exit the board. With only 2 steps of German casualties, it was an easy victory for the Fatherland.
|160 horses vs. 1200 horsepower|
Alternate title: Breakthrough = I Break YOU!
I played this scenario over email with my good friend Tracey. I can't recall clearly, as this damn scenario started back when the leaves were still on the trees, but I'm pretty sure I chose to play this one... or at least offered him several choices and he picked this out of maybe 3 or 4 possibilities.
In any case, I had marked this scenario as Want to Play after reading about it on PG-HQ. Astute members will recall that because of a gentleman's agreement with Avalanche Press, PG-HQ doesn't host OOB totals (ex: 3 x GREN), just OOB flavors (ex: GREN!).
The point being, this scenario looked pretty awesome on the site. And was happily selected by both sides. It was upon consulting the Sinister Forces scenario book that things became a little less awesome... you see the Germans get sixteen trucks. Every single platoon they have is truckable!
What's the problem? This is a breakout scenario! Breakout = understrength and desperate forces trying to pierce a line and slip through. This doesn't stand a chance if the enemy is driving all over creation like it's a freaking Monster Truck Rally!
Take your seats and hold on to your hearts, ladies and gentlemen! Because now it's time, time, TIME for the monster truck RALLYYYYYYY!
On the left side of the arena, we have a handful of starving, shivering communist partisans riding burros...
booooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo! (<-- crowd)
And on the RIGHT, we have... BIG FOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOT!
annnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnd GRAVE DIGGERRRRRRRRRRRRRR!
start... your... ENGINES!!!
BRUM! BRUMBLE! BRUAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAH!
and then they chase the partisans and burros around the arena and run them over repeatedly until they're either a bloody pulp or stuck to the truck wheels... or both.
So that was pretty much how it went.
I tried to be a bit tricky, delaying entry of my cavalry group 4 full turns. It was enough to get Tracey to foolishly close his line down upon my sacrificial partisans (worth no VPs to the Germans if massacred - mind your VCs, lad! that should have tipped you off!) and my cavalry made a mad dash for an end-around his northern flank. He hurriedly packed all his gunners back into their trucks and redeployed right in front of me. As he noted, I did manage one cavalry charge to destroy his armored cars. That's the only cavalry charge I've ever made in PG, and in an otherwise disappointing scenario is was a rather thrilling moment.
No unit of mine made it closer than 3 hexes from exiting, the two that did again being turned away by hastily trucked and redeployed German infantry and HMGs. And that's really the story of the scenario.
If you wanted to make this more competitive, you should start by tossing out half the German trucks. The perfect German mobility, given that they already have better morale and firepower, is far too much to overcome. I'd also give the Soviets +2 net initiative rather than the -1 net they begin the scenario with, since they're the ones trying to break out after all.
Lastly, a note about my friend! Tracey, aka PG-Tank Dude, is a phenomenally patient opponent. This 15 turn scenario took us nearly half a freaking year to PBEM, and 99% of that is my fault. 2 or 3 weeks would have been appropriate. I hope his next few PBEM opponents treat him better than I!
Conclusion: Rated 2, because as written only complete incompetence on the German side will give the Soviets a chance. Throw out half the German trucks and you're getting closer to an interesting situation...
|Hard Luck Cavalry|
Scenario 15 - Red God of War: Peoples Avengers
I played this Scenario via email against Shad. Dice roll decided who played which side and I received the Germans. I set up my motorized security column with most of the units centered on the maps with a large Leader chain activation in place to respond quickly in either direction depending on Shad's first moves. I also placed a fire team, each with a Leader, on either end of the column to prevent Shad's cavalry from trying an end around. Heavy snow will prevent Shad from moving too quickly (-1 to all movement rates, except for the Partisans, who get to move there full allotment of 2). With all of my units loaded on trucks and beginning on road hex's, I should be able to get to any situation that develops and quickly unload and be waiting, regardless of the -1 to MR.
Victory Conditions: Shad (Soviets) wins if he is able to get twice as many steps across the map boards and exit off the East edge than are eliminated. I (Germans) win if he doesn't and I lose no more than 7 steps in the process.
Specials: Shad is allowed to draw one aircraft on any 1 turn. The river is also frozen, which means units can cross it without Engineers, but suffer a +1 column shift for DF and Bombardment.
Turn 1: Germans win initiative. The whole center chain activates. Mortar teams move east off the road and unload as does several INF and a HMG to make a defensive perimeter around them. Led by the Major 10-2-1, this would not be a good spot for Shad to try and break thru with a 30 column DF value. One more INF and a couple of Leaders head north to bolster the units in town. The Sgt. along with 1 INF and 1 HMG setup a position on the edge of the large woods gaining a large defensive bonus. Shad brings all of his Partisans on board with their NKVD leaders and the HMG to back them up. German OBA opens up and not only obliterates a complete Partisan unit (x2) but the Major that was leading them as well. Southern Fire team activates, tightens the column and moves north one hex. 2 Soviet step losses plus 1 Leader to 0 German.
Turn 2: German OBA doesn't match its earlier success, only attaining a Morale check on a NKVD Lt. and his two stack of Partisans, which they all pass. Shad proceeded to move his Partisan units East, led now by only 2 NKVD Lt's. My SdKfz 222 was ineffective in its op-fire, however, the 2 combined mortar teams were not, gain a demoralization and a disruption on 2 Partisan units and disrupting one of the NKVD Lt's. Shad then proceeded to pass on his turns while I moved a couple Leaders up to the town and moved my main force in the center of the map to seal off the path in between the two forests. Still no sign of his cavalry, which leads me to believe that he's trying to make me commit most, if not all, of my forces against his Partisans in the center. I'm still betting on a cavalry dash to the south, which is why I'm leaving my southern troops loaded on their trucks for a quick response. I finally pass as well, ending turn 2.
Turn 3: Not wanting my fast moving SdKfz 222 involved in an assault just yet, I moved it further along the road by 2 hexes. Shad begins by moving half of his Partisans further East. German OBA is completely ineffective this time as are the Mortars. Shad moves half of his Partisans north into the small forest. Main force begins to dig in. Still no sign of the Soviet Cavalry.
Turn 4: German OBA is able to get a disruption on a Partisan unit, and the mortar teams are able to demoralize another Partisan unit. Finally, Shad brings his cavalry on board. All Cavalry units with their Leaders enter along the river (which is frozen and gives a +1 column shift to DF and Bombardment). In turn, now that I know his plans, I have my southern fire team, which is still loaded on trucks, immediately move north behind a group of Partisans and disembark. This group, led by a Lt. 10-1-2, should be able to handle all the Partisans along with the Sgt. 9-0-2 that set up in the woods. I shift my Major and Captain along with their troops towards the town to stop Shad's cavalry in their tracks as well as bringing the troops in the town to link up with the Major.
Turn 5: That last activation on my part may have been premature. I should have left the troops in the town. Shad is making a run towards the north of the now undefended town. Realizing my huge blunder, I send some trucks to pick up most of my central force and hopefully get them to town first thing next turn. Shad rallied the rest of his Partisans and I was able to get a Leader and an INF/HMG loaded back on their trucks (thanking my lucky stars that the truck were in the same hex with them) and over to the far edge of town and unloaded again. FOW was successful and I wasn't able to move any more units.
Turn 6: I'm happy to report I have 3 activations! Since I didn't get a chance to use my OBA last turn, I open up with it first thing, demoralizing a Leader and disrupting a Cavalry unit. I loaded up my Major with his INF and an HMG and move them into town. The Major does not draw any Op-fire from a Cavalry unit that he passes thru town. The Lt. fighting the Partisans in the south is able to get another demoralization on a Partisan unit. After a failed recovery attempt of some Partisans the Mortar teams fire a demoralizing salvo on two more cavalry units. Shad is slowly working the Cavalry around the town but I was able to race my SdKfz222 from mid-map all the way to the far edge as well as a Lt. Col. with an INF to help seal off that escape route. Shad has only a 1 hex corridor to move thru at the end of Turn 6, which if I can get the first activation of Turn 7, I can seal it off completely, making Shad either run back around to the other end if town or start assaulting my troops in hopes of breaking thru. Either option will keep him from gaining the far edge to exit his Cavalry as he now begins to move half of his Partisans to that area to help assist his Cavalry.
Turn 7: Unfortunately, Shad got the first activation and did something I wasn't prepared for. He made a Cavalry charge against my SdKfz222! All 3 of my available op-fires (1 from the SdKfz and 2 from the INF in the hex beside it) only obtained 1 Morale check as the Cavalry Charge thundered by. My SdKfz was obliterated with an X2 result but made a superb showing of themselves by gaining an M2 result on the Russians. The Lt. became disrupted and 2 of the 3 Cavalry units became demoralized. With 2 hex's wide open and the INF sitting in between them having op-fired twice already, I brought my OBA to bear on the last two good order Cavalry units - gaining disruptions on both as well as their Cavalry Leader, which the Leader and 1 Cavalry are able to recover with Shad's next activation. Mortar units are able to inflict a step loss on the Cavalry units that took out my SdKfz, gaining another step loss due to compound morale failure. Shad moves his Partisans to the North edge of the forest while the German Major and a Lt. moves truck loaded troops to seal off the corridor north of town. The Dug-in troops at the center of the map load up and move into the town as well just to feel useful. The turn ends with the 2x INF inflicting a step loss on a Partisan unit just outside the edge of the big forest, leaving the remaining step demoralized. The Soviets have suffered 5 step losses, losing 1 to their Initiative bonus.
Turn 8: Shad achieves first initiative despite taking a hit to his bonus. He attempts to recover his cavalry units that took a beating against my armored car. He is able to recover his Leader to Disrupted and his full strength Cavalry to good order. His 2 half strength Cavalry units fail to recover and are forced to flee. I Op-fire on the first one as it enters the adjacent hex and is destroyed from compound morale failure. The 2nd one races by, dodging the bullets. My combined DF on the remaining Leader and cavalry only managed to obtain a demoralization on both. Partisan fire in the Southern forest is ineffective. German INFx3 in the town assaults Cavalry unit, obtaining a 6 on the 24 column. Two more Cavalry steps lost. My Sgt. with his INF and HMG takes the initiative and assaults a group of Partisans, demoralizing their Leader and Disrupting both Partisan units.
Turn 9: Begins brutally. The German Major combines 3 INF into an assault force and assaults the last full strength Cavalry unit that took out the Armored car, inflicting an X3 and killing the Leader thru compound morale failure. With the 2nd German activation, the Sgt. draws in another INF into his assault hex, inflicting another step loss on the Partisans and demoralizing the remaining Partisans and their Leader. Shad begins to move his Partisans out of the center forest. To this point they are the only group not being engaged and have only a pair of mortars between them and the east edge of the map. My OBA is devastating and completely eliminates a full strength Cavalry, leaving the leader cowering in a ravine. Shad attempts to use his OMB that made it safely to town, but with no effect while my HMG's are able to demoralize the 1/2 strength Cavlary and disrupt the Captain. Turn ends after another activation each due to Fog of War.
Turn 10: Shad has no more Initiative bonus, and I win easily with two activations. I combined fire of my 2 HMG's and 3 INF in the town against the 2 Leaders, OMB and demoralized 1/2 strength Cavalry. With a 30 column and 45 column DF value respectively, I foresaw a huge decimation. All I got was a disrupted Leader. Even the demoralized 1/2 strength Cavalry laughed it up! My assault against the Partisan unit in the forest faired better, gaining an X1 and the remaining step loss due to compound morale failure. My OBA was able to destroy 2 steps worth of Partisans that Shad foolishly led out onto the frozen river, giving me a +1 column shift bonus and I rolled a pair of 1's. The remainder of the turn was Shad attempting recoveries and me maneuvering for better shots.
Turn 11: I win with one activation. I chain activated the forces in town around Shad's OMB. A Direct Fire attack with 2xINF was ineffective but the follow-up assault with 2 HMG's and the remaining INF was able to inflict a step loss on the OMB and Demoralize one Leader. Shad now concentrates on getting his Partisans in the middle of the board to the eastern edge since I have no units in front to oppose him other than the 2 mortars, which I load up onto waiting trucks and move off to the south. I'm able to eliminate his lone Cavalry Leader north of town and then begin to maneuver my trucks and troops for loading for an attempt to catch up and get ahead of his unblocked Partisans. Shad attempts to recover his demoralized OMB and Leader, failing miserably and fleeing the assault hex, and getting eliminated promptly with a free shot in the back. The remaining Leader is able to remove himself by escaping thru the sewer. Remainder of the turn is Shad attempting to recover all of his Demoralizations, which fail.
Turn 12: Unbelievable! Shad wins Initiative and uses it recover his Leader and Partisan unit in the center of the map. My OBA is ineffective against his HMG in the same area, so I will have to wait till he moves it so I can move my loaded trucks that will be attempting to cut him off. I'm able to get 4xINF and 1xHMG into the center of his Partisan exodus, cutting them in half. Only two Partisan units have a chance of getting to the east edge of the board. Hopefully my OBA will perform well in the few remaining turns. The rest of the turn Shad devotes to morale recovery.
Turn 13: I get a massive 3 activations to start! OBA is somewhat effective against one of the Partisan units running for the border, obtaining a demoralization. A disruption would have been more effective and I followed it up with the mortars which I should have aimed at the other fleeing Partisans instead. I was able to get a HMG unit ahead on one side and 2xINF units up the other side to either block and/or for Op-fire chances. Shad's DF on my 2 remaining truck-loaded INF (after a hex correction) was ineffective, however, my Sgt. Leader and 2xINF assault in the southern forest was not, obtaining a step loss on a 1/2 strength Partisan unit. The rest of the turn is Shad recovering morale and I'm able to kill off a Lone Leader Colonel.
Turn 14: Again with the 3 activations. OBA gets a Demoralization on the other fleeing Partisan unit and Mortars are ineffective. I'm able to get two INF and 2 Leaders in front of the 1st fleeing Partisans and effectively blocking the 2nd Partisan unit from being able to get to the edge of the board due to not being able to move towards an enemy unit. Shad responds with his one available air-strike, which results in a flock of nearby sheep getting destroyed. I initiated an assault on his last good-order Leader and Partisan unit, obtaining a Demoralization on his Leader. Shad activates his units in the assault stack, Leader fails recovery and flees, leaving a full strength Partisan unit to go it alone. He rolls a 4 for his Partisans, gaining only a Morale check on my German units, and rolls a 6 for the Germans, eliminating 2 steps of the Partisans. This now leaves me wide open to his HMG sitting in the adjacent hex, which rips into my units obtaining a step loss on one of my INF, but all pass the Morale checks.
Turn 15: Leading off with two activations for the Germans, OBA is again ineffective. However, Mortar fire was overly effective, obtaining a demoralization on the Soviet HMG and a step-loss on a German INF thru friendly fire! I'm able to assault and destroy two more steps worth of Cavalry. With that, Shad concedes, having no more good order units.
Conclusion: This was pretty much a stacked deck in the Germans favor with starting on the road hexes. Even with my early mistake of leaving the Northern town undefended, my armored car was able to stop Andrews Cavalry from making an end-around dash to safety. I rate this a 1 out of 5 due to the Soviets really having no chance, but 5 out of 5 for being able to play it with Shad;-)
|1840s force attacks 1940s defense|
Wow, where to start with this one. The Soviets have a low morale, short range firepower, low mobility force with almost no support (no arty, one airplane counter for the entire game) trying to get through a good morale, high firepower, mobile force supported by mortars and OBA. The Soviets must get through the German line and off the other side of the board. The Soviets must exit twice as many steps as are killed, with Cav steps counting double and partisan steps counting if the exit, but not against the eliminated restriction. The Germans must prevent the Soviets from winning with no more than seven steps lost.
You can tell this scenario has major problems just reading it. Heavy snow reduces all movement allowances by one. This is not very impactful to the truck mounted German troops who begin on the road perpendicular to the direction of Soviet travel, and can therefor move fairly easily in a lateral direction, covering anywhere the Soviets try to cross. But the real kicker from the heavy snow is it completely invalidates the partisan units. The reduced movement allowance means they can only move one hex per turn, and they must travel eighteen hexes in fifteen turns in order to exit! At least they have poor morale so they are likely to break and therefor move even slower. They CANNOT exit! So they are completely useless for the victory conditions unless they can somehow knock out eight German steps. But to do so with a range of one means they must survive adjacent opfire and then either manage to assault or get very lucky on the direct fire table. (I did not read Shad’s errata suggesting the partisans are not affected by snow before playing, so I played as printed.)
The Germans set up along the road, fairly evenly distributing their firepower while staying on the trucks for mobility. The Soviets immediately use the aircraft against a truck stack and manage to disrupt the German stack. This is the highpoint of the Soviet side. Most of the force enters north of the river, with some Cav units entering in the center and south to try and tie down the German units in those areas. The Germans redeploy to create a strong force north of the river while still providing an overwhelming blocking force against both Soviet distraction forces. They are well positioned before the Soviets can even manage to start significant movement across the board.
The German arty rips through the Soviets, causing significant step losses, disruptions, demoralizations, and compound demoralizations throughout the game. As the Soviets approach the defenses in the north German firepower cuts them down like wheat. Only one Par unit manages to get adjacent to a German stack (by its own choice) before being torn apart. The Germans launch counterattacks, assaulting shaken Soviet units and shredding them instantly.
The center diversion force attempts cavalry charges, but those are obliterated by German opfire. Some Soviet Cav in the northern force sees crossing the river to assist as an option. Half of it is destroyed, the other half ends up on the eastern (starting) edge barely functional at game’s end. The southern diversion force faces similar results, but one lone Cav unit with a leader manages to run the south edge and exit before game’s end. The Germans probably could have pounded it with OBA to stop the move, but I felt so bad for the one unit that made mid-board that I didn’t have the heart to take it out.
No other Soviet unit even makes it past row XX11. In the end two steps of Cav make it off the board, eleven steps of Cav, the OMB, and the HMG, along with fifteen steps of Par, the wagon, and amazingly only one leader are eliminated. The Germans lost one Inf step. This scenario is way broken and leads to a question as to whether anyone even considered playtesting it. Some ideas to recover the scenario: 1) Remove the German trucks (as someone else suggested; 2) Extend to 20 turns (so the Par at least have a minor chance to exit); 3) Ignore the heavy snow (hampers Soviets way more than Germans); 4) Play a different scenario. Can’t picture giving this one anything above a 1 rating. Broken.