Monday, December 07, 2009

ASL: Back to the Barricades (Pt. V)

Note to readers: This post won't make a lick of sense to anyone who isn't familiar with the Advanced Squad Leader game system. 

Interested ASL players take note!  Dave Hauth, and I are are engaged in another big battle over the Barricades.  We have come to mutual agreement to each maintain a "blog correspondence" wherein we individually publish our thoughts on our game with the agreement that neither will read his competitor's posts until our campaign game is complete. So, I present to those interested ASL players out there my half of said correspondence.

You can read Dave's half of the correspondence here.  You can read my previous entry here.

Plans for Day 3

Press the attack.  I've got two very explicit goals for the day. 

Right now, there are two tactically important buildings within striking distance of my perimeter.  One of these is Building BB18:  The Red House.  The other is Building J31, the Power Station.  Both of these buildings are level 2 buildings with clear views all the way down the road that runs along the 20 and 21 hex rows, bisecting the board at its equator.  Dave, of course, will recognize the importance of these buildings.  He will have to take measures to protect both or, more likely, burn them.  But he won't know which of the two I will attack.  Plus he has to guard against attacks I might make toward Building 018 or even AA25 from my riverbank salient.  I get the advantage of choosing a target and then setting up for dominance of forces at the point of attack.

So, here's my plan:
  1. I'm going to let the Red House alone on Day 3 and I'm going to push hard for the Power Station. This will mean a full-scale assault on the Russian left.  
  2. On the Russian right, I want to grab Building GG21 which sits just beyond my current perimeter and hold it. 
  3. I'm also going to make a very modest push to clear the area around the Chemist's Shop, but other than that, I will be content merely to dissuade Russian initiatives and hold my ground along the river. 
If I can attain these goals, and keep my forces in those buildings within my perimeter (that is to say, keep them from being Isolated), I'll take an Idle day on Day 4 and be poised for a killing strike on Day 5.

The idea I'm working on is this:  I want to be able to project a lot of firepower onto the "middle area" of the map.  I'm talking about the area around hex P19.  On Day 5, the day after my Idle day, I want to make a combined armored and infantry thrust from the west edge of the board along the road that runs on the 20/21 hex rows.  At the same time, I'll make a smaller thrust from Building GG21 to the west.  If the two attacks can establish contact, I will have isolated all the northern factories.  The Russians in the northern factories will, at the same time, be facing a company of Pioneers who have the job of pest removal.  The Pioneers will enter the factories, from any of three directions (west, north, or east) with their flaming squirt guns and their "welcome baskets."  Any Russians coming from the south to reinforce will have to go through the area around P19, which I hope to have under fire from building J21 and from GG20.  If it all works out... well, like I said:  a killing strike.

Of course, there is that old cliché.  You know?  " No plan survives first contact, yadda, yadda, yadda..."   I'm sure Dave will not be much inclined to oblige me in my efforts.  The Red Army and its wily commander have a way of setting up nasty surprises that ruin everything.  (I refer you to my previous post and the naughty Red machine gun stacks that held up my river advance).

Let's cross that bridge, when and if we get to it...  Whenever I get to planning too far in advance I always remember a button I saw Rodney Kinney, my ASL Sensei, wearing at one of the Wild West Fests.  It's deadpan message?  "Nothing... can possibly... go wrong."

"Master, may I not use my 548 to Prep Fire?" I asked. 
Master smiled.  "A squad may Prep Fire or a squad may move," he said.
"Each of these fruits ripens in its season. 
But the commander whose 548 uses Assault Fire capability is he whose harvest silo is least often empty."

My retained forces for the day are these: 

548 x 18
468 x 4
467 x 9
447 x 2
9-1 x 3, 8-1 x 3, 8-0 x 2, 7-0 x 3
HMG x 2, MMG x 3, LMG x 5, DC x 2, Atr, Lt. Mtr.

StuG IIIB x 2
10-2 Armor leader
1 x Pzkpfw IIIL (immobilized Z2 in bypass along Y3 hexside)

I was awarded 15 CPP for the day, giving me a total of 16 CPP since I saved one point from the previous day.  My purchases for the day are these:

Rifle Coy = 7 CPP
467 x 12
9-1, 8-1, 8-0
HMG, MMG, LMG, Atr., Lt. Mtr.

PzIIIH Pltn = 3 CPP
PzIIIH x 3

Btln Mtr = 2 CPP
Pre-registered hex Y16 = 1 CPP

A total of 13 CPP spent.  I will save the remaining 3 CPP in anticipation of my post-Idle Day "extravaganza."

 Ready to party!
So, here we go.  As my setup reveals, I will attack southward along hex rows A-I with a full Sturm company, supported by a platoon of PzIIIH tanks and backed up by a machine-gun kill stack.  The objective, again, is building J21, where I note that Dave has two stacks of units.  I imagine that the stack in K22 is a squad and leader who will attempt to kindle the building.  If that happens, c'est la guerre.  There's not much I can do about it.  But I aim to be knocking on the door by the end of the day, flame or no flame.

My reinforcing rifle company will come in on the north edge of the board to probe southward through the 06 factory, but if engaged will be content to merely hold their ground.  I have two platoons of Sturm troops around the Chemist's Shop who are charged with clearing the area in the immediate vicinity.  They are supported by a machine-gun kill stack in CC10, and a radio observer in the first level of FF12 who will call down battalion mortar for smoke and support.  But no real effort for the Commissar's House is in the works.  It looks like Dave has set up to put a torch to the place, so I imagine this is the last game day for it to remain intact.

Lastly, my battle-hardened rifle platoon, supported by the two StuGIIIB tank destroyers will grab building GG21 and hold it.  Under no circumstances do I want to go beyond that building and possibly activate Dave's reserve units.

My biggest fear for the day is that Dave is going to hit my attacking Sturm company with pre-registered artillery.  But, hey, this is Stalingrad, folks.

Our game may or may not occur this coming weekend.  I can't wait!  We've got us a good game here.

To be continued...

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Looks tense! But the German has to love the way he's stretched the Russian line. The Russians are having to abandon the first northern factories without a fight, and the breakthrough down the riverbank is making the Commissar's House look really compromised.

Imagine how much more solid the Russian line would look if he were holding the bottleneck at GG13 or even HH16. A long front line like this really benefits the Germans.