Askim Bridges - The Matrix Games version of West Front
Askim, Norway April 12, 1940. 07:30 The Askim Detachment formed from the 1st Battalion 1st Artillery Regt. had earlier in the invasion, fled their depot in Ski from the advancing Germans with only two of their 75mm guns. When the Germans did not seize the depots in thier haste to get to Oslo, the Norwegians returned and looted the armory of small arms equiping the artillerymen as impromtu infantrymen. Gen. Erichsen's 1st Division mobilizing at Mysen some miles to the east of Askim was slow to mobilize, with men cut off or driven away from thier depots by the Germans early movements. Askim detachment was to buy them time to mobilize. Knowing the Germans were soon to come at him, General Erichsen sent what few troops he had to spare under the command of Major Gledich, to aid the defense of Askim. Askim Detachment was assigned to guard the five bridges crossing the Glåma river in the vicinity of Askim, along with local bridge guard detachments that were to blow the bridges if the Germans were to appear. Two long lakes to north and south made these the only crossing points along the river. On the 12th of April, the German 362nd Infantry Regiment, in three battalion columns was tasked with clearing Southeastern Norway of Norwegian forces and breaking up Gen. Erichsen's 1st Division. Major Wilck commanding II/I.R.362 and a reinforced company of I/I.R.324 in the lead under Haubtmann Arno Manthey had the mission to cross river Glåma at Askim and destroy the troops mobilizing at Fossumströkets fortress near Mysen. Norwegian pickets alerted Askim force that the Germans, using an improvised motorisation, of requisitioned Norwegian vehicles were approaching Fossum bridge. "Jagdkommando Manthey" in the lead, came to the Glåma bridge at Fossum shortly after 7:30 on the 12th. The Germans were unaware that the Norwegians could open the flood gates of a dam upstream breaking up the ice in the river. This is the reason for the time limit on the scenario. Thus the Germans have to hurry to seize an intact bridge or cross the river and establish a bridgehead before the ice breaks up. The Norwegians need to prevent the Germans from establishing themselves on the east side of the river and advancing on Mysen. Best played by two human players.