Wednesday, January 06, 2010

ASL: Fight for the Barrikady (Pt. III)

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.

Fellow Berserk Commissar Sonny Eberts (Santino, the Bull) and I are enmeshed in a savage struggle for the Stalingrad Barrikady, CGIII.  Sonny and I will each maintain a blog correspondence as the game progresses with the agreement that neither will read the other's blog until given express permission to do so.  Readers are encouraged to comment!  Got a problem with where I placed my AT gun?  Speak your piece!  Just be sure not to inadvertently reveal any information about Sonny's plan to me or vice-versa.

You can read my entry for the previous game day here.

Aftermath of Day 2:  Grist for the mill

All I can say, at this point, is that Sonny need no longer be concerned that he is not hitting me hard enough.  Ouch!  The perimeter at the end of the day looked like this...

Perimeter at the end of Day 2
This game went the full 8 turns which is generally bad news for the Russians.  And that maxim held true this time.  The Russians suffered 60 CVP while the Germans suffered 31 CVP.  That, my friends, is a whipping of severe dimensions.

Things might have been different had I not rolled boxcars for my Turn 1 field phone contact attempt.  If I could have brought down my 80mm mortar missions, I might well have been able to hold the Z1 building and my northern river fortifications.  Especially since Sonny used the area around X2 as his jump off point, which is exactly where I had planned to drop my spotting round.  But, at the least. the module will be available for Day 3.

I also handicapped myself by forgetting to bring on my T-60 M42 reinforcements for the first 4 turns.  At that point, I chose to leave them off board for the duration of the day.  That way, I avoid possibly having them recalled and they can set up on board for Day 3.

Sonny had purchased a Sturm Company, a module of Nebelwerfer, and a module of 100mm artillery.

The Nebelwerfer was pre-registered to hit in the middle of the big factories, which it did.  But it really didn't damage me much, and even helped me out by setting a fire in the M10 factory, and thereby gutting it and denying Sonny the rooftops for the next CG day.

Neither did he get much out of the 100mm artillery which landed accurately on my river defenses and broke a few squads, but really didn't do much to disrupt my line.

Sonny scored his points with his 9-2 leaders (he had three of them!) which punished my troops all along the line, but most especially in the factories, where my militia fell like wheat to the scythe.  My consolation for receiving such a whipping is that the vast majority of my casualties (about 60%) were cheap militia troops.  As I stated in my previous post, their purpose was to buy time for the troops to the east.

But, as the new perimeter reveals, my front is now stretched.  Although he didn't quite reach the river, Sonny is poised to do so on the subsequent day, and he stretched his west edge perimeter far to the south, opening up a lot of entry area for future reinforcements.

I did manage to destroy about a platoon of Sturm troops, and another couple platoons of rifle squads, plus four leaders, including one of the aforementioned 9-2 killers.  But at the end of the day, Sonny had an advantage of 20 squads!

I'm in trouble.  There is not much I can do to keep Sonny off the river at this point and he now has any number of options for avenues of attack.

Nothing for it, but to hum a few patriotic anthems and dig in.

Day 3:  Rope-a-dope defense

As things stand, I can't possibly stand toe to toe with the Germans unless I want to be mauled even more severely than occurred on Day 2.  Fortunately, the perimeter is such that I can condense my defenses within it and keep most of my forces out of reach of the Germans for the start of the scenario.

That, I believe, must be my strategy for the day.  Trade ground for time.  Fall back.  Dodge.  Weave.  In other words, rope-a-dope.

My retained forces for the day are these:
  • 628 x 8
  • 527 x 2
  • 447 x 14
  • 426 x 2
  • 228 x 2
  • 10-2, 10-0, 9-0, 8-1 x 3, 8-0, 6+1
  • HMG x 2, MMG x 3, LMG x 2, Atr x 3, Lt. Mtr. x 2, DC
  • 45LL ATG
  • 80mm Mortar module
  • T60 M42 x 3
I have been allotted 18 CPP for the day.  My purchases are these:
  • Militia Coy  4 CPP
    426 x 12
    MMG, LMG, Atr, Lt. Mtr.
  • T60 Pltn (Dug-in) (Depleted)  2 CPP
    T60 M42 x 2
  • Sniper Increase +1 1 CPP
    SAN 3
  • Rifle Coy (reserve) 4 CPP
    447 x 12
    9-0, 8-1
    HMG, MMG, LMG, Atr, Lt. Mtr.
  • 120 Fort Pts.  3 CPP
    AP mines x 24
    Wire x 2
    HIP Squads x 3
    Dummy x 9
  • T70 Pltn (dug-in)  2 CPP
    T70 x 3
  • MOL-P pltn 1 CPP
I have 1 CPP remaining, which I will put in the bank.

If I were able, I would purchase 3 infantry companies this day. But, alas, since my historical modifier is "0," I am limited to two companies and will therefore start Day 3 with a numerical disadvantage.

Sonny sees this...
My set up illustrates what I mean by "rope-a-dope."  I've set up well within my perimeter to minimize the amount of contact with the Germans for the initial turn of the game.  Hopefully, this will spare me from being devastated by his Turn 1 Prep Fire Phase.  After that, of course, all bets are off and it's time to start mixing it up.

In order to avoid losing more ground on the west edge, I've deployed my mobile T60s and the 45LL ATG to discourage a board-edge creep by Sonny's units.  If he chooses to attack this way, he will overwhelm my forces, but hopefully it won't come cheap.

I've deployed my Guards SMG Company to defend the Power Station and the buildings to the south of it.  That company is backed up by most of my reserve rifle company, screened by dummies and fortifications.  The 8-1 in the cellar of the Power Station will attempt to kindle the building. 

My militia company is spread across the southern ends of the L14 and O10 factories.  Cannon fodder, I'm afraid.  Skulk, lurk, delay and die bravely, boys.  My 10-2 and his kill stack are poised to kindle building O18 and then move to the S17 factory.

My rifle company and the two platoons of dug-in tanks guard the area around the Chemist's Shop.  It is here where I plan to make my fiercest defense.  I've also set up to try to interdict any Germans that try to get to the river, but I doubt I can keep them off the shore for long.

Lastly, my 6+1 gets field phone duty to call down the 80mm Mortar from the Commissar's House, where he can direct fire toward the Chemist's Shop and Debris Field in the north, as well as to the rubble in the H26 area south of the Power Station.

Day 3 setup
I'm expecting to get punished again.  The Germans are under a big head of steam and my forces are reeling.  But, this is Stalingrad and I'm the Russian commander.  And, as such, I have to be able to take a punch.
We'll see.

Update:  Alas, alas.  An unfortunate misunderstanding has compromised our game.  I apologize to readers for the abrupt ending, but I fear I cannot continue.  Despair not, however!  I hope to start another game in the near future.  In the meantime, thanks for reading!

No comments: