I used the WRG 1925-1950 rules to play out the scenarios, although I strongly considered using Nuts! and Chain of Command instead. However, both of those rulesets seem to play better with individually based 15mm figures than with my element based 6mm figures. The scenarios in this campaign demand just a little bit more scenery than I have in 15mm at the moment - I really need some more 15mm farm buildings for this campaign! - so I decided to go with 6mm figures and the WRG rules again. I am really looking forward to playing this campaign with Nuts! one day though, I think it would be tremendous.
This campaign concerns Operation Martlet in Normandy 1944, specifically the attack towards Fontenay and then Ruaray by 11/Royal Scots Fusiliers, later relieved by 7/Duke of Wellington's Regt, against elements of the 12th SS Panzer Division:
Anyway, the first scenario featured a British rifle platoon of 11 RSF supported by a Sherman and a FOO for a 3" mortar battery against a German SS Panzergrenadier Pl supported by a Pak40.
|The road to the outskirts of Fontenay. The Scots are probing from the left (North). Incidentally, the hedgerow at the top of the picture is to mark the edge of the board. It cannot be used as cover by either side.|
|And looking along the road that the Scotsmen will advance by.|
|An infantry section with an attached PIAT hug the bottom hedgerow.|
|Infantry sections advance by pepperpot next to the main road.|
|The advance is unmolested so far: a section reaches the first building (bottom-left); whilst the advance near the main road is about 50m short of the house by the crossroads.|
|Contact! British infantry occupying the wall (left) and the stables (closest building) are engaged by a German infantry section.|
|Meanwhile, the remainder of the British platoon have occupied the crossroads.|
|The firefight continues; lots of suppression, not much damage!|
|The remainder of the British platoon formed up, ready to continue the advance|
|But the trap is sprung! German infantry to the top-right of the crossroads (just visible behind the hedge!) and another section (beyond the building at the top-left) open fire.|
|A view from the Eastern side, so the German section can be more easily seen); British troops occupying the building by the crossroads are supporting the Brits outside|
|The Sherman moved to help the Scotsmen engaged at the bottom; its HE fire and extra MG, allied to the rifle and Bren fire, has destroyed two German MG42 teams. The British infantry leave the stables to assault the pinned down Germans.|
|The firefight around the crossroads continues.|
|While the Fusiliers have completed the destruction of the German section at the bottom.|
|The FOO calls in 3" mortar fire on the German section at the top...|
|Six Germans become casualties!|
|With the Germans eliminated or driven off, the Scots resume their advance|
British: 1 x Sherman, 1 x PIAT team
Germans: 2 x Rifle groups, 3 x LMG teams
I was using the WRG 1925-1950 rules (reviewed here) along with the solo play "Threat Generation" system from Miniature Wargames 373, which I have reviewed previously here, but in essence involves using a card deck to pick German defenders (or nothing, there are some dummy cards); randomly generating the direction and distance of the threat; then randomly generating the tactical posture of the threat. It does work really well for a reasonably casual solo game.
It doesn't generally give the toughest game - although you do need your wits about you - simply because a randomly generated defence shouldn't be as effective as a planned one, given reasonable tactics and an average dose of luck.
You get a feeling for how the WRG rules work after a while, especially in infantry battles: lots of suppression for relatively little damage, as long as the range isn't very close or somene is caught on the move in the open. This feels pretty realistic. Suppressing then assaulting really does work, as long as you have numerical superiority too (otherwise it is hard to generate the forces needed to carry out the assault, they are all too busy pinning). It was quite a lucky shot that did for the Sherman!
I should note that I use a ground scale of 1":10m for these scenarios. For 6mm troops that is not too far off accurate ground scale!
Figures mainly by Baccus 6mm, the Sherman is from GHQ, the buildings from Leven Miniatures and Timecast.