Title: The BEF in France
Rules: Combat Patrol: WWII
Description: The Germans have swept through France and Belgium with dizzying speed. Lieutenant Fotheringay and his stalwart platoon form the BEF have been assigned the unenviable task to holding a small rural crossroads to delay the German juggernaut. Can they hold long enough for their battalion to take up defensive positions, or will they be overwhelmed?
Title: A Skirmish in France
Rules: Combat Patrol: WWII
Description: The Maginot Line has been outflanked and bypassed. The Germans are dashing through France to the coast. Lieutenant Carnot and his small platoon have been tasked to hold a small rural crossroads to buy time for his battalion to form a new defensive line to the West. Can the small band of Frenchmen hold back the German juggernaut long enough?
Notes: Rules will be taught. Younger gamers welcome with a participating adult.
On Saturday, Greg and I ran two games on the same terrain. The setting was a small French town in 1940. The German forces were tasked to seize the town and eliminate resistance in preparation for the battalion following them. The two scenarios were the same, but in the morning the defenders were British, and in the afternoon they were French.
The German forces were the same for both scenarios. Two squads (dividing into two half squads) were forward ready to cross the stream. Behind them were four Czech 38(t) tanks and two more squads in trucks. It is subtle, but you can see that the table with the river bed is slightly shorter than the other tables to provide a look of flood plane.
The British (and French) deployment had one squad in the village (but outside the buildings), a machine-gun team in a corner of woods to cover the avenue of approach for German infantry, two Matilda II tanks, and two more half squads just to the left of this picture. The Germans had twice as many tanks and twice as many infantrymen as the defenders.
The Germans got three unanswered shots from their 38(t)s on one of the Matilda’s, failing to penetrate with every shot. Then the Matilda opened fire and quickly brewed up both of the 38(t)s it was facing.
After losing a tank on the German left, they advanced to the cover of a ruined building and established a support-by-fire position. They traded fire with the British machine-gun and a half squad of infantry for several turns.
The Germans to to the town and began to close assault the defenders. The Brits had an ATR in the second story of a building, but it bounced off the 38(t). A Matilda finished off the last German tank. The German infantry seized two of the four village buildings. With the loss of their last tank, the Matilda’s could maneuver with impunity. They backed off and began shelling the towns. At this point, we determined that while the Germans held the town, with now support, they couldn’t hold it. We called the game a British victory.
In the second running, with the French defenders, the Germans won. The French lost one H-35, and the Germans lost two 38(t)s. The Germans were able to seize all four buildings through close assault.
Both games were a lot of fun for the players, and we enjoyed running them.