AAR: WO12 Heart of Wilderness
Ralph recaptured the Chair from Matt by defeating him in WO12 Heart of Wilderness. Matt had the defending Germans while Ralph, attacking with the Russians, had to seize a bridge on the east side of the battle field and one of two buildings on the west side. The terrain is pretty dense, with lots of woods and orchards with a hill, stream and gully thrown in for good measure. The Germans receive a mix of elite and first line troops, a pair of Guns, a pair of Pillboxes, and trenches. The Russians attack starts in the east with near parity with the Germans in MMC and the bridge as their apparent target. On the second turn a nearly equal sized group of Russians attack from the south, who should head toward the village to claim the requisite building. Finally four BT tanks loaded with Russian SMG squads arrive on turn 4 to reinforce one of the attacks from any one of three directions.Ralph started "turtling" towards the bridge although a brief loss of presence of mind cost him a squad. He was cutting off most of the forward defenders, capturing and destroying their equipment. Matt was able to barely pull out several units but at the cost of one of his guns - before the tanks even showed up.
Ralph was attacking a key position on the approaches to the bridge with a large fire group, only to roll an 11 for the lowest possible NE result. He cobbled together another large fire group and said if I roll another 11 I'm out of here. Of course he rolled another 11. We managed to mollify him, get him to sit back down and continue playing.
As the Russians drew within sight of the bridge an elite Russian squad rolled snakes but instead of going berserk as feared/hoped by the opposing players, it got the daily double - a hero and fanatic squad. This potent force was able to grind its way forward to seize the bridge with the assistance of several other squads on the penultimate turn. With units occupying the approaches, this Objective was securely in the Russian's hands.
In the south Matt slowed the Russians with effective use of dummy stacks and a fortuitous melee. A German HS was tied up with a Russian squad, MMG and leader. Ralph rolled a 6 to eliminate the HS but Matt responded with snakes, wiping out the entire Russian stack, generated a leader which meant he only suffered CR due to the odds change but lost his HS by random selection.
It is a good scenario although a little hard on the Germans. Matt was handicapped by lack of experience with fortifications like pillboxes. This was his first time using them. In analyzing the game we thought it probably best for the Germans to throw most everything around the bridge, all the trenches, pillboxes, guns and especially the 10-2 leader. Leave enough troops and dummies in town to misdirect the Russians to over commit there. Congratulations to both players on a well played game.