The Long Shot - The Matrix Games version of West Front
[Teamgame - 6 players] : After the break-out from the Normandy bridgehead, the allies raced northward without meting a lot of oppositon. Eisenhower's strategy for a 'broad front' quickly ate up the meagre supplies that were still being offloaded on the invasion beaches. Inevitably the whole offensive had to behalted for lack of supplies. At that moment Patton's third army was making it's way to Aachen, the French first Army was fighting near the Swiss border and the Montgomery's 21st army group was nearing the Dutch border. There were still supplies getting through, but the allied supreme commander had to allocate them to those troops that stood the best chance of making the best gains! At that moment, Montgomery presented a very bold plan : Market-Garden. It was to be a combined air-ground assault that would hopefully end the war quickly!The plan was as bold as it was simple : 1st Allied Airborne Corps would seize three major river crossings from Eindhoven to Arnhem, a distance of 120km. Then the reinforced XXX Corps would use these bridgeheads to cross the Rhine and gain a foothold just northwest of the Ruhr. From there an envelopping attack, in combination with 3rd US army would encircle the Ruhr and end the war quickly. History has however proved once more that no plan survives the first contact with the enemy! In early september, the German army was pulling back in dissarray toward the Westwall. One could no longer talk of divisions and corps, but groups of stragglers and left-overs from the once proud divisions. To change this situation and to save the Westfront, Hitler appointed fieldmarshall Model as commander of OB West. Quickly he started to assemble all troops in his command and tried desperately to form some sort of defensive line. Both 9th and 10th SS Panzer Divisions were grouped near Arnhem in preparation for rest and refitting and the last remaining reserve formations were put in the line in preparation for the expected assault by the British.When the first of the allied paratroopers started descending from the skies, the germans were caught by surprise, not I the least by the scope of the forces involved, but reacted very quickly! The commander of II SS Panzer Korps, Bittrich, quickly realised that the bridges at Arnhem and Nijmegen would be the pivotal points for the whole operation and ordered both of his divisions (re-grouped into battlegroups) to take control of these two cities (and their bridges). Meanwhile other forces put pressure on the 'Arnheim Salient' which was quickly forming.In the end the combination of bad weather over England, the presence of strong forces near the dropzones, lack of communication and the single road leading to Arnhem resulted in the annihilation of 1st British Airborne Division and the prolongation of the war...