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Playtesting the **Morning of fire for I / Panzer Rgt. 26 (DAR)
03-24-2010, 05:23 AM, (This post was last modified: 03-26-2010, 09:17 PM by Crossroads.)
#1
Playtesting the **Morning of fire for I / Panzer Rgt. 26 (DAR)
Mike (Kool Kat) asked everyone to support the H2H effort so here we go giving something back to community! After his encouraging words, I thought maybe it indeed would be a good idea the designers receive feedback also from players with less experience? Thanks Mike! I will try to play this as any normal game I would play... maybe I can provide them with some... err... unexpected turns of events every now and then?

We are into turn #11 at the writing of this so I should not be giving out the enemy any important information anymore. Kool Kat I believe is playing this also blind...

EDIT: The hostilities have ceased now. I warmly recommend the new guys to play test as well! Mike asked me to keep notes and I decided to write them in a way I could create an AAR out of them. The AAR was still quite an effort so I hope you enjoy it! cheers

** SPOILER ALERT **

Feldcommander Hoth has provided us with quite a thriller here :) If you prefer to play blind as I do, do not read further as the fun will be spoilt for you!

This AAR / DAR might contain some spoilers even for those preferring to have a look at the enemy they are about to face.

OK, having said that, let us move on!

Morning of Fire for I / Pz Rgt 26
a.k.a. The Battle of the Kats

Kapitanovka, 65 Km S of Cherkassy (Ukraine).[H2H] [HIS] [CSL] After the initial successful break though by Russian forces in the Korsun pocket operation, the right flank of the Russian attack (2nd Ukrainian Front) was making a costly advance against German defensive fighting between the 47th Panzer Corps and 9th Army. Once the rupture was gained, many mobile armored units moved to exploit the gap, infiltrating to the west with the objective to contact the other pincer. In the Kapitanovka-Thiskova area, the 18th Russian Tank Corp had advanced quickly, leaving some pockets of German resistance in the rear. Two weak Kampfgruppens from the Panzer Regiment 15 led by Major Von Sievers and panzergrenadiers of KG von Brese from the 14th Panzer Division, had been cut off from their parental units in the south and a relief force was assembled to contact them and at same time attack Russian forces in the area. This new armored Kampfgruppen was the I Abteilung of Panzer Regiment 26, a new and green unit sent from France with an entire battalion of Panther tanks. This powerful force had to make contact with the surrounded Kampfgruppens, but their combat inexperience caused the planned attack to fail with them suffering many armor losses. Despite their losses, the Kampfgruppen took Tishkova, and the other surrounded Kampfgruppens in the area were able to fight their way to safety. During the combat they had to protect the Panthers... A relief force in trouble...


- Krazy Kat (allied) vs Kool Kat (axis)
28.1.1944
25 turns
Ground: Mud
Smoke: 10
Air support: 0
Rules: ON except VV
First move: Axis

Victory values
- Major loss 300 - Minor loss 400
- Minor victory 600 - Major victory 650

Reinforcements arrive in Turn 6 and 7. Lots of infantry together with some more T-34s. Mortars, AT guns, AA trucks... Just what the Russian player will no doubt need!

Map together with the First Plan (of how many?):

[Image: Turn0.jpg]

Middle sector
- Tishovka and Kapitanovka 250 + 250 points
- However, Kapitanovka not defended at all.
- Tishovka has a decent number of tanks (15 SU-85s and 7 T-34s), but the lack of infantry is worrying
- A huge forest, no doubt swarming with hostiles? The orginal rescue force waiting to be rescued?

Eastern sector
- Pisarivka a further 250 points.
- 29 T-34s (!) but practically no infantry at all

Northern sector
- A decent infantry formation about to charge the enemy positions visible north of Kapitanovka forest. Two companies of T-34s aprroaching the town but not quite threre yet.
- No artillery to speak of anywhere. At north I have one battery of Katyusha rockets mounted on trucks.

Western sector
- Need to have an open route for my reinforcements to come in!

Southern sector
- A.k.a. the Great Unknown. Some victory locations there as well but I will not consider them. That's some 100 points for the Germans for free...

Next turn
Here's the plan:

- Retreat from North to Pisarivka
- Do not commit forces but for delaying actions until reinforcements arrive!
- Recon recon recon! I have no idea where the enemy is or where he is arriving from!
- Victory locations are of high value. I need to prepare to defend all of them! But how? I have a motley crew dispersed all around the large (and muddy!) map???
- I do have a nice force of T-34s in Pisarivka, however. Lack of infantry worries me.
- Some of the few units in Tishovka need to move to an empty Kapitanovka to secure the outer limits of town. Hopefully they will at least be able to slow the enemy down should there be hostiles lurking in the forest.
- Dig in! With no forces available I need to prepare a delaying fight that will hopefully be very costly to enemy.



Turns 1 and 2

North
Recon … by death… in the north for my snipers! Enemy trench system spotted! Enemy engineer platoon routinely shoooes (as in: shooo, go away?) my men back who lose an SP in the process. First blood!

Continue to pull out from north via a hopefully secure eastern road. I am playing it safe, sending my lone T-34s out to recon while moving my platoons of three T-34s each in the flanks, reserving APs for op fire (set to middle distance against heavy targets, short on others)

Middle
The forest just north of Kapitanovka is not empty... First panzers spotted! Panthers!

I assume I have now located the southern and northern boundaries of the pocketed relief force!

I now understand the role of my northern force better as it is clearly made available for attacking the enemy pocket from the north. I am hopefully doing something unexpected when deciding to concentrate my forces in the middle instead. I will leave a couple of platoons to the north to make some racket for a while…

The travel is very slow through the mud, though. How long until they reach Kapitanovka? 10 turns? 15? Oh well, that would leave me with 10 turns to recapture the towns as for sure they are lost by then?

Moving some units towards the empty Kapitanovka to slow the enemy units from advancing.

An ATR platoon... An MG platoon. Another ATR platoon. How can I stop the sieged German relief force armed with Panthers with these!?

East
Concentrating my armour into companies of three platoons, having them form strong outposts to observe and secure my flanks. Single T-34s as spotters to ensure I do not miss any enemy movement.

Snipers and ATR platoons also continue to advance into observation posts that will keep them invisible while providing a nice LOS to enemy.

Next turn
Regarding the map, Feldgeneral Hoth has done a superb job here! The map is very challenging to play under the long reaching guns of German armour! There seems to be safe routes outside enemy LOS but recon and flank protection will be important. Especially as I still have pretty much no idea where the reported, strong German rescue force (the one rescuing the rescuers?) will appear!



Turn 3

Here’s the plan for setting up a hedgehog defence at this early point of the battle.

It might look nice and organised but it does not change the fact that I am desperately thin at all victory locations. I do have some armour available but remain pessimistic as how they can help in street fighting against German engineers and panzer grenadiers...

Suspected enemy location circled with red ink, the planned friendly movement in orange arrows:

[Image: Turn3.jpg]

Middle
Southwest of Tishovka, an enemy forward unit takes me by a surprise as a Panther platoon kills a tank from my probing T-34 platoon. From a very long distance, of course!

Disrupted tanks retreate to Hills of Tishovka.

I have moved two SU-85 platoons of 5 assault guns each south of Tishovka to cover the entry into town. They advance into a shrubbery. Here's hoping it is soft targets they will encounter first!

North
Meanwhile, the retreat from Pastorkoye, or the advance towards Pisarivka as I decide to call it instead, continues.

I am placing a strong force of ten T-34s on a ditch between Pastorkoye and Pisarivka to protect the left flank of my retreating err advancing troops.

East
A company of T-34s sent south from Pisarivka is already in place to cover the flank against any enemy advance from south-east. If only other units would move as effortlessly in the mud as these trustworthy tanks!

The more I look at my isolated forces between Pisarivka and Tishovka the less I like about their position. I would like to start moving them to reinforce my units in the middle. An ATR unit on foot will recon the road and see if any hidden German unit will open fire.

The shortest route lies directly under the noses of the Germans dug in the southern end of Kapitanovka Forest. I will need a company of T-34s to support the movement. Nine T-34s start their engines and leave Pisarivka.

Next turn
Losses at this point of time:
- Russians have lost two T-34s and a 1 SP of snipers, while
- my Katyusha platoon decimated 2 SP of German engineers in the northern end of Kapitanovka forest.

22 turns to go and absolutely no sight of the strong enemy formations anywhere!. Strong engine sounds indicate they are there for sure...



Turn 4

Here's the action from the middle sector by the end of turn 4:

[Image: Turn4-a.jpg]

North
Pulling back err advancing from north, ever so carefully... I position four T-34s to secure the north-eastern rear flank of my troops. Enemy tanks can surely move in the mud as well? The slowly moving column of trucks and infantry would be an easy target for them!

To keep up the image that the town is still full of Russians I left an AA truck platoon and a single T-34 to town and ordered them to make some noice to hide my retreat (advance, it is advance!). That they do, without damaging enemy though.

East
I decided to leave my AT guns in that small unnamed village east of Kapitanovka. It is too risky to move them to Kapitanovka under enemy observation.

The three platoons of T-34s that I provided to secure their advance are now rushing towards Tishovka, hopefully making it in time! Enemy LOS to be avoided at the cost of lost time as I cannot affort to lose any more units. Their planned route is drawn with a dotted red arrow (see the pic).

Middle sector
Tishovka
Five platoons of Panthers approaching south of Tishovka! Already! I was expecting them much later :(

I order my assault guns to immediately pull back to the city, using roads outside the LOS of enemy long 75mms. I do not want to start a long range duel with Panthers, better to hide within the city.

A disaster strucks! A platoon of SU-85s briefly stray into enemy sight and two of them are immediately blown to pieces! I will definitively plot the route one hex at a time to avoid this in future!

A difficult situation indeed? I am not able to observe their advance as I will no doubt loose any tank they can spot. My infantry is too far back to be of any help. I order an ATR platoon to move forward anyhow.

Perhaps they can survive there for a while so I will learn what the enemy is doing there?

I continue to scatter my troops to defensive positions, having them dig in. I do not see what else I can do at the moment...

Kapitanovka
North of Kapitanovka, in an attempt to establish my presence, six T-34s are ordered to destroy the Panther platoon spotted 500m in front of their position.

The first T-34 platoon moves forward - fires - no result! Pulls back.

The second platoon moves forward - loosing a tank to the now alert Panther crew! The two remaining T-34s are disrupted and their returning fire just bounce off the thick Panther front armour again!

The desperate situation at Kapitanovka can be seen from the picture. To cover the whole left flank of the city I have an ATR platoon digging in on a hilltop. To the north I have the two T-34 platoons hiding behind the factory, where an ATR unit is keeping a contact with the enemy. In addition there's a MG unit somewhere there...

The one (!) rifle platoon from Tishovka that I afforded to send as reinforcement just made it to Kapitanovka, with orders to secure the whole right flank of the city!

South
Nothing to report here. Certainly no enemy columns seen anywhere.

Next turn
It is still a long time until my reinforcements will start to arrive from turn 6 and 7 onwards. I will continue to avoid contact while trying to get an understanding of enemy formations moving towards me.

A worrying trend: my losses are starting to accumulate - without being capable of hitting back! I have to do better or it is the penal battalion for me.
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03-24-2010, 06:34 AM, (This post was last modified: 03-26-2010, 05:45 PM by Crossroads.)
#2
RE: Playtesting the **Morning of fire for I / Panzer Rgt. 26
Turn 5

A captured enemy e-mail errr radio communication indicates he still has a lot of fixed troops at this stage of battle. It indeed seemed my northern force was designed to attack the prepared enemy positions in the north. I will continue with my original plan to enforce my troops in the middle, however.

North
The Russian column continues to travel (advance!) south, with its rear and left flanks protected by friendly T-34 companies.

The German force with its defensive network is seen to the west of my forces... I better stay out of their LOS! Is there any enemies? I have no idea but since there are trenches I better assume they are manned!

I decide to commit the company of T-34s on my left from flank duty to a permanent ambush role, with orders to stay low in the ditch east of the forest.

The ATR and sniper platoons are now nicely in place to spot any careless invader heading this way!

As seen from the picture, five turns into the game and my troops have barely left the town... Trucks are able to move only two-three hexes per turn...

[Image: Turn5-a.jpg]

Middle sector
Not much happening this turn at Tishovka. Having lost the LOS I have no idea of the exact whereabouts of enemy... To change that, I am carefully maneuvering one of my T-34s into a shrubbery west of the plains located south of Tishovka.

The ATR platoon immediately dug in an IP in the hills south of the city. How nice!

At Kapitanovka, the single rifle platoon I've got there managed to enforce the factory in the eastern side of the city. Good job! The location has a very commanding LOS towards the fields of enemy advance!

[Image: Turn5-b.jpg]

East
One more turn and the T-34 company will make it to Kapitanovka as seen from the picture above! The brave ATR platoon advancing in the open should be there in a few turns as well, should they survive their field trip...

South
Southeast, I sent a company of T-34s even further on, in a hope to catch the enemy out of guard there.

Judging from the scenario description, the enemy has a long march ahead of them as well.

Hopefully from southeast, and perhaps one hard strike on an advancing enemy column would tip the scales on my favour?

I have now committed two tank companies for an ambushing role, one in north and now one in south. Hopefully it will pay out as I would surely need those units in the middle.

[Image: Turn5-c.jpg]

See the LOS from my T-34? It IS a Panther country out here!

This is exactly the reason I keep mentioning how I do this and that, while staying out of sight... I really love to hate this map :)

Next turn
Into turn #6, with a first chance to receive the first of my reinforcements!



Turn 6

North
My troops continue to advance (finally got it right!) south, slowly ever so slowly, through the mud, expecting more mud ahead. Have I mentioned there's mud? ;)

My snipers immediately spotted an enemy arty unit in the middle of the Kapitanovka forest! How unfortunate for them to be in the only spot of the forest I can actually see. I already moved my Katyusha unit so I need to plot the strike come next turn...

East
A single T-34 on a recon mission from Pisarivka is destroyed by enemy fire! Where did THAT come from? Shoot! I assumed these guys would remain unspotted when not moving... :(

The LOS from Pisarivka does not reach to Kapitanovka forest but I decide to leave it at that. Should they come into open I will have enough time to react as - have I mentioned this - it is muddy!

Middle sector
Tishovka
A Panther platoon suddenly pops up in the middle of the hills south of Tishovka!

I used most of my action points only managing to kill a single enemy Panther, before they retreated out of sight. I am glad my tanks are located in a brand new IP should the enemy retaliate next turn.

If not, I will need to probe with my ATR platoon in order to have a LOS to plains down the hills. Panthers are surely there. But where is the German infantry!?

Kapitanovka
The nine T-34s sent from the eastern sector are now available to strengthen Kapitanovka!

Woo-hooo!

Unfortunately there will be no way their HQ will ever be within a range. Can't be helped...

[Image: Turn6a.jpg]

West
The reinforcements have arrived! Moving cautiously while trying to stay out of enemy LOS!

Luckily, the T-34s are incredibly agile in this terrain. If only the trucks would be of any use. I swear the soldiers march quicker than them... No options for AT guns though.

How long until they reach Kapitanovka? 10 turns? This would again indicate the inevitable that I need to reconquer the area from enemy. Accordingly, an order is sent to my troops in the middle to fight until last man, avoiding stupid losses though! Stay in the city! Dig in!

The railway line through the Kapitanovka forest, from Northwest, worries me a lot. Enemy tanks advancing from there would have a field day ambushing my trucks, basically stuck in the mud!

Where are they!?

South
Enemy defense structures spotted!

As they have reinforced their positions, and having seen absolutely no movement there I am assuming no strong enemy formations are located there...Just some AA guns and an infantry platoon or two.

I decide to order my tanks to advance quickly towards middle sector, while carefully staying out of LOS of the village and the nearby fields.

I hate changing my mind every turn. But it will be a nice reinforcement to the middle, hopefully available at the time the western reinforcements start to arrive to middle.

I just hope I will have an open approach route still availalbe to me as the enemy Panthers are surely stalking their pray somewhere there.

The lone T-34 will remain in the fields where their number (which is one :) ) cannot be seen by the enemy. Maybe this will mean he will need to leave a few units to secure the lowly VP that is there...

[Image: Turn6b.jpg]

Next turn
Overall, not much this turn.

I still have no reliable information available as where most of the enemy is lurking. That is worrying me a great deal.

I will stick with my plan to reinforce the middle sector the best I can.

Once the enemy arrives, they surely attack simultaneously from north of Kapitanovka and south of Tishovka? Southern front line provides quite many options for flanking attacks, however... I need to remain spread thin to learn where they come!



And that's it for today! I hope you have enjoyed the story so far... cheers

My apologies for the misuse of english language, I am not a native...
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03-25-2010, 03:33 AM, (This post was last modified: 03-26-2010, 05:45 PM by Crossroads.)
#3
RE: Playtesting the **Morning of fire for I / Panzer Rgt. 26
Turn 7
Nothing much to report. The intelligence has advised me a significant enemy force is still being ordered to remain fixed in their positions. I will hopefully have enough time to have my defense organised.

[Image: Turn7.jpg]

North Katyusha strike now planned to rid the forest of enemy arty!

Middle At Kapitanovka, stalemate as the opposing forces retain from firing. At Tishovka, an ATR platoon sneaks forward to have a view to the road leading to Tishovka, while the first reinforcements from west arrive.

Nine T-34s arrive to outskirts of the city. Come next turn they could actually deploy while having enough APs for one shot each!

West A T-34 platoon and the accompanying tank rider platoon set to guard the southern flank of the reinforcements

South No enemy movement anywhere. Maybe they are not there afterall?

Next turn
Slow progress towards the middle sector to continue. It will take ages to have any infantry there, however...

No signs of the enemy. At least a few more tanks available for the defenders now.



Turn 8

The situation at the end of turn 8:

[Image: Turn8.jpg]

North
The status window reports the whole enemy 105mm battery evaporated to thin Ukrainian air after having received my friendly Katyusha salvo!

Middle sector
Tishovka
The ATR platoon deployed just in time to spot an enemy column trying to outflank my defense on the hill!

After considering the LOS issues I decide to move in to welcome them.

The two SU-85s platoons in the hill move forward and fire once each. Two T-34 platoons joins in from the town itself! The remains of two Panthers are left smoking, others having retreated out of sight.

I do not have a complete view to enemy and hope there will not be an armoured battalion of fascist aggressors hiding behind the hill!

My assault guns that moved are out of APs, but the T-34 and SU-85 platoons sitting tightly in the IP on top of the hill are available to protect them.

Kapitanovka
All silent before storm?

West
Having moved my southern reinforcement column forward I decide to switch the T-34 platoon together with their tank riders into a lone T-34.

Then, it hits me! 3 tank SPs are transporting 6 infantry SPs!

Of course !!! The change of rules as how the troops are transported !!! :mad:

West and North
Angry orders are being barked out, men rush into their tanks, diesel fumes shoot out as a tank platoon after another blasts out through the mud to meet the slowly moving truck columns!

Two enormous traffic jams develop as my tanks meet the truck columns! Infantry busy jumping out from their trucks, trucks moved to road side, tanks parked all over the place with no APs left for anyone to protect themselves!

I have also abandoned my ambush positions by the road east of Kapitanovka forest… I have been very careful protecting my flanks, but should enemy armour be available to spot my columns they would have an absolute feast among themselves...

It is a risk I decide to take… I do believe I have made sure the enemy is nowhere near my columns... Nervy times indeed waiting for enemy next turn to arrive... :hissy:

Next turn
A devilishly clever hint by the scenario designer to remind the trucks are not the only name in the game? Those better than me surely have realised the possibility for large scale tank infantry, but no, not me. I needed someone poke me into eye with them!

Suddenly, the race is on. Whip

Enemy is at the gates, but for the first time there is hope among the Russians the reinforcements could just make it on time if not to stop the enemy from advancing into cities but at least for an immediate counter attack!

I absolutely need to stall the enemy from advancing into towns of Tishovka and Kapitanovka...

At this stage I am no longer that worried about Pisarovka in east, as surely the enemy will not spread his forces into all three victory locations.
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03-25-2010, 04:34 AM, (This post was last modified: 03-26-2010, 05:47 PM by Crossroads.)
#4
RE: Playtesting the **Morning of fire for I / Panzer Rgt. 26
Turn 9

Situation at the end of turn 9:

[Image: Turn9.jpg]

North
Of course, having moved the T-34 company out from their ambush position it is NOW the enemy decides to advance out from Kapitanovka forest! I have a perfect view into enemy as my ATR team and snipers are still in place. Too good to miss! Eleven T-34s are soon back in their positions, but with no APs left...

This also means one rifle company will need to continue with their march through the mud. Sorry lads!

I hope I am able to disrupt the enemy element from traveling to middle sector. Armoured cars only... But the forest does look ominous still? Tanks, AT guns behind trees... ?

Middle sector
Kapitanovka
It has begun...

Enemy moves out from forest here as well as a Panther and mkIV platoon advances towards the factory. Plenty of armour and infantry coming out behind them!

Still without infantry I decide to engage them before they make it into city! The ATR platoon moves into the factory to hit them – but gets no results! The smaller of my tank platoons with two T-34/43s cautiously do the same – but the resulting firestorm blow them imediately out of this world!

OK... Let us stay put and wait for the enemy to advance. Maybe they would at least be more cautious now? I do need a turn or two to have the first wave of the reinforcements in place.

And quite a reinforcement it is! Six T-34s with two full rifle platoons from the west and three T-34s with one full rifle platoon from the east!

It seems I will be just ready to give the fascists a fight they are not expecting! Or rather, a fight I was not expecting to being capable of...

Tishovka
At the risk of using most of my tank APs I decide to disrupt the advancing enemy infantry to gain more time for the enforcements to arrive.

One platoon of panzer grenadiers has managed to climb to a hill top front of my AT guns. All my assault guns with their 85mms only manage to disrupt the platoon in the open terrain there. They will remain there to plot artillery for next turn... I was expecting to at least be able to have them retreat back :(

Two panzer grenadier platoons planning to cut into town between the hills do retreat as a result of my T-34s firing from town, but the third one remains stubbornly in place, undisrupted even.

Artillery
My one Katyusha platoon is still way too far north to be able to reach the middle sector. My only mortar platoon in the east finally gets some action as the enemy advances out from the forest.

Next turn
The next few turns will show whether the enemy will be able to break into town hexes... But help is on their way! Eight (8!) T-34 platoons together with their full strength rifle platoons ready to leave their mark in the battle field!

Having managed to minimise my losses so far I am optimistic the tide will now turn towards a Russian advantage...

I have used most of my APs in Tishovka however. I expect to see enemy come back with a vengeange next turn. All signs are there for a truly exciting turn 10!



Turn 10

Middle sector
Tishovka
Heavy fighting breaks out at gates of Tishovka!

Again the enemy is able to hit an arty salvo on my positions with a loss of SMG and AT SPs. If only I would have some arty as well...

Next, five advancing Panther platoons charge up the hill and receive a warm welcome from friendly armour! They are able take an astonishing amount of punishment! Enemy loses only 2 to 3 tanks despite of heavy close range shelling of my concentrated AT and armour fire!

They have two infantry platoons for close support, I am able to push the other one back while the other one will be available undisrupted come next turn.

Kapitanovka
Meanwhile, the first reinforcement arrive to Kapitanovka as the two rifle platoons riding the six T-34s make it to the city from the west. They are not ready to deploy yet...

The six T-34s that arrived on previous turn take an ambush position in the enforced factory building to welcome the two mk IV platoons cautiously making towards the right flank of the town. I see them, they do not see me... All APs available for what I hope is a warm welcome to them!

The overall situation has suddenly changed:

[Image: Turn10.jpg]

North
My retreating (advancing !!) forces from north have now made it to Pisarivka! Foot infantry and infantry on trucks will secure the city for good.

The tank infantry is blasting straight through the city in order to make it to Kapitanovka area before the enemy is able to close the east-west access road between the towns of Pisarivka and Kapitanivka!

To prevent that from happening, my armour charges into open with cannons firing at enemy armoured cars. They prove to be of no match to my T-34s... German infantry retreats towards the forest unharmed but I am happy at the loss of AC SPs I managed to cause.

West
My infantry on tanks are making very good progress towards Kapitanovka. This will be very close! Will they make it on time before enemy closes that route as well? Two more turns they are there!

Next turn I need to dismount the remaingn infantry from trucks and make the decision should I commit tanks for another round of transport for bringing an additional infantry company into play...

Next turn
Enemy suffered some heavy losses this turn. They will retaliate no doubt!

My engineers provided me with some smoke in the hills of Tishovka. If my tanks will hold their own I might have an opportunity to push the enemy armour away from the hill.

I am glad the German armour apparently pushed on with their infantry not quite keeping up with them. German panzer grenadiers are deadly in close support, I would not dare to bring my tanks this close to the German battle cats should they also be around!

Katyusha targeting enemy AA trucks and other soft vehicles north of Kapitanovka this turn.

Victory Dialog at the end of turn 10:

[Image: Turn10VP.jpg]

The enemy has taken some severe losses this turn, especially as I hit their armoured cars with my tanks. There's the 500 victory points available in the middle, however, the fat lady has not sung yet.

Into turn 11. I have a feeling it might prove decisive for gaining the initiative for the rest of the game ...



Turn 11

My intelligence informed me of enemy commander’s e-mail errr radio transmission where he is heard to say he propably made some wrong tactical assumptions and is considering a surrender in a few turns if things do not change for better.

I do feel for the enemy as somehow I ended up with an answer to his actions, always in just nick of time, typically with forces that weren't there a turn earlier...

Of course he does not know that, and I hope to put as much shock-and-awe into this turn as possible to have this battle come to an early end...

Situation in the beginning of turn 11:

[Image: Turn11.jpg]

Tishovka
Panzer grenadiers charge up the hill after a concentrated artillery barrage on my fortified forward post! I immediately loose my AT guns and the SMG platoon to their fire.

I am very lucky they appeared one turn later than the initial panzer charge!

In the coming armoured slug fest - one that I am ready for by now - I manage to knock out 5 to 6 Panthers with my armour and AT guns further back. I should now have a definite advantage here?

Three panzer grenadier platoons advance in the open and I only manage to have one of them retreat, without casualties to add to the insult. Two full platoons will start the next turn undisrupted just outside my positions.

I use again all my SPs. No fresh enemy forces appearing next turn I hope?

No enemy armour is in my LOS now. My engineers use a smoke round again to protect the T-34 company positioned behind the forward IP where my AT used to be.

I reinforce the forward posts with two rifle platoons to make up for my losses. Normally I would have kept them out of sight due to enemy arty but now I need to press on.

Separately, about a klick left from this battle, a Panther platoon charges up a hill to punish my SU-85s he knew were there without any APs.

Finding my T-34 platoon waiting for them was propably a nasty surprise. The enemy manage to take two rear shots on my SU-85s, which in turn prove Russian cast iron is of solid stuff as well! No armour losses at all to enemy tanks. Lucky dice :)

Next, the Panthers are properly shoooed (shooo, and stay out!) away by my T-34 platoon!

Kapitanovka
The advancing mk IV platoons with the supporting infantry on the right flank of the city are taken by a surprise just as I was hoping for! The other platoon is knocked down completely, the other is losing a tank or two in the process as well!

The mk IVs and Panthers just north of the town are luckier.

Again the enemy infantry is slow to arrive to support the tanks. At the moment I am securing the northern factory with just two ATR platoons as I am keeping my tanks outside the enemy tank LOS.

East
Pisarivka is now fully garrisoned as last of my troops arrive there.

I do not believe the enemy has any forces left to attack the city, but I will spread out my infantry around the town just in case.

I still have seven T-34s there, available to defend the city. Just to make the enemy feel the Russians are everywhere I drive one platoon of T-34s into open, knocking out a distant AC platoon with them...

Reinforcements are in!
I have now fifteen T-34s in Kapitanovka in addition to two new fresh rifle platoons. I additionally decided to send another T-34 + rifle platoon there to make sure the enemy will not be able to advance into town. That brings the available tank force to a total of eighteen T-34/43s!

Tishovka received another ATR platoon and three T-34s, making the total of friendly armour up to eighteen T-34s and thirteen SU-85s !!! More importantly, there's a couple of rifle platoons ready for combat as well.

The nine T-34s + their three rifle platoons, originally from up north, are rushing towards Kapitanovka and aren’t even counted for in the numbers above! They should make it to Kapitanovka in two to three turns time. Surely my forces there are able to hold until they arrive.

A few turns after that, the last infantry company coming from west should reach the middle sector...

Then, surely, the enemy will not have the strength to continue! For the first time I believe I have a good understanding where the enemy is, and in what strength.

Next turn
I do believe the battle is over once the rest of my tanks together with their infantry make it to middle sector.

It was not a nice turn for the Germans, but as you can see the Russians took losses too.

[Image: Turn12VP.jpg]

Having (knock on wood!) just barely avoided the firing squads for missing out on the obvious role of the tank infantry I am in a happier mood now.

Time to have the vodka put on ice?

An enemy engineer platoon just north of Kapitanovka will receive the Katyushas warm greeting next turn.
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03-25-2010, 05:38 AM, (This post was last modified: 03-25-2010, 08:26 PM by Crossroads.)
#5
RE: Playtesting the **Morning of fire for I / Panzer Rgt. 26
Turn 12

And the opposition offers an olive leaf... Accepted! :bow:

It was a very close affair! Hopefully I managed to get all the confusion and doubt I experienced during the play into this DAR ;)

Thanks Mike for having me testing the scenario :) I truly believe this battle can swing either way depending on the tactics chosen. Lots of maneuvering to be done before any action is possible!

I will provide a final Lessons Learnt after a day or two. And will try to correct at least some of the typos.

cheers
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03-25-2010, 08:04 PM,
#6
RE: Playtesting the **Morning of fire for I / Panzer Rgt. 26 (DAR)
Fantastic test report, Petri cheers

The main attractive of this scn is their different tactical approaches
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03-26-2010, 09:29 PM, (This post was last modified: 03-27-2010, 11:05 PM by Crossroads.)
#7
RE: Playtesting the **Morning of fire for I / Panzer Rgt. 26 (DAR)
(03-25-2010, 08:04 PM)Feldgeneral Hoth Wrote: Fantastic test report, Petri cheers

You are certainly welcome! The hours I put into playtesting and AAR no doubt pale in comparison with those you put into creating this thoroughly enjoyable "little" scenario! cheers

How does a scenario pass through testing and become Approved?
For a scenario to become approved the scenario requires four reports which rate the scenario with an average score of 8 or more, at that point the scenario can be approved provided there are no other tests registered against it, the scenario is moved to the Approved list using a link located in My Scenarios (see below).

Now, I do not have my legal counsel to interpret the above but I do believe congratulations are in order! (four test reports with an average score of 8 or above) Party

Quote:The main attractive of this scn is their different tactical approaches

Indeed! So many options for both parties as how to approach the battle, lots of time and room for maneuvering, probing, making decisions and having then a change of mind, and then the grand finale with a very brutal action for the key victory locations

Having changed e-mails with you I understood the German player ended up with quite similar approach as was the case in history. That can not be a bad thing either?

Here's the Lessons Learnt I promised earlier :soap:

I will not comment on tactics and general game play. Any "new guy" looking for that should refer to "Hints and Tips" documents in the Manual folder that came with the install.

Instead, the real lesson learnt must be about the play testing effort itself:

Please contribute to H2H production! Yes that's right, that means YOU! :)

It was a fun scenario to play, the additional effort of making notes as the game evolved was not an effort at all.

The test report required some thinking to do, and as a conclusion my feeling was that the scenario is ready to ship, perhaps with the little tweaks to scenario description we have talked about.

Otherwise my job was made easier as there were already three rounds of tests done before my participation.

Having read those, I believe the little tweaks made for this scenario propably made an already good scenario even better.

The change for Russian reinforcement instead of fixed troops will ensure there are more tactical options available for game play? Otherwise the clash between Russian fixed forces and the German relief group would be more or less inevitable?

Adding smoke propably made the attack and defense a bit less suicidical as well?

My humble thanks to scenario designers and to H2H productions for the precious time you invest to help make sure this fine game will not grow old! Another round of cheers surely needed!

The additional bonus for scenario designer is (apart from the valuable feedback) hopefully the quality stamp a scenario receives as it has passed the testing?
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03-27-2010, 01:20 AM,
#8
RE: Playtesting the **Morning of fire for I / Panzer Rgt. 26 (DAR)
(03-26-2010, 09:29 PM)Krazy Kat Wrote: Instead, the real lesson learnt must be about the play testing effort itself:

Please contribute to H2H production! Yes that's right, that means YOU! :)

My humble thanks to scenario designers and to H2H productions for the precious time you invest to help make sure this fine game will not grow old! Another round of cheers surely needed!

The additional bonus for scenario designer is (apart from the valuable feedback) hopefully the quality stamp a scenario receives as it has passed the testing?

Gents: :smoke:

And that's what it is all about? Taking time to help play test H2H scenarios... providing valuable feedback to the scenario designers... taking a scenario through multiple test rounds and revisions... ends with a better quality scenario for all to play and enjoy? :chin:
Regards, Mike / "A good plan violently executed now is better than a perfect plan executed next week." - George S. Patton /
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