Sunday, 28 May 2017

Operation Martlet Probe into Fontenoy

Lt. John Cavendish, last seen defending a position in the Western Desert now leads his Cameronians against the men of the 12th SS Panzer Division in Fonteny-le-Pesnil, his job is to clear the town, gain the road and push towards the high ground around Rauray. To aid him in this attack he has a Sherman tank, a PIAT team and a medic along with his full, up to strength platoon, the Germans on the other hand have already suffered casualties and their squads are reduced but they are also veteran fighters and have a Panzer IV on standby should it be required.

Cavendish's plan is to advance along the left hand side of the main road, take the lone building and push on through the German lines, the Germans occupy the outskirts of the town and unknown to Cavendish have fortified the building he is aiming for, he has inadvertently chosen the strongest position in the defences to assault.

The preparatory bombardment of the enemy has not helped the British but they rush towards the village, the Sherman targets the bunker hoping to rattle the men inside and make an assault possible, also mortar fire manages to cover parts of the building in smoke. As the British approach closer to the festung, Obersturmfuhrer Braun radios for armoured support and is rewarded as Oberscharfuhrer Weber's Panzer IV rumbles into view and starts to open up on the enemy using the main road. Although ordered forward just as the smoke dissipates, Sergeant Stuart cannot get his squad to move as machine gun fire pins them down, despite the best efforts of the platoon medic casualties mount.

With the minor British probe on the left held up Braun moves a squad along towards the crossroads and pours even more fire into the British huddled on the road. A foolhardy attempt by the PIAT team to rush the Panzer IV ends in disaster as the men are shot down, the British armour still concentrates on the bunker to its front, but the support is pointless as the infantry cannot approach the building. As casualties mount Cavendish gives the order to retire.

So, that's the first game over, four moves in total which took me a leisurely two hours or so. I spent some time looking up rules as it has been a while since I played Bolt Action and I replayed some orders as I realised I had not done the right thing or was being unfair to the troops and there was a better, more commonsense action for them.

What went wrong? Well, sadly for the British they picked the house turned bunker to attack and then when the moment came to assault it the assaulting squad refused to move. The German fire was also pretty ferocious as the veteran SS squads had two LMG's each and their luck was most definitely in. The positioning of the Sherman was particularly bad and despite being on target with the smoke the mortar then suddenly could not hit anything. First blood to the Germans. I apologise for the photographs as I set the table up in the living room and the light is pretty bad, I did not want people gawping through the shop windows at the saddo playing alone, they wouldn't understand.

1 comment:

  1. Looking good George, even gooder for the Germans I fear.