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DCRBrown

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Nov 26 13 4:46 PM

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ARDENNES ENCOUNTER.

This PanzerGrenadier scenario was very loosely based on Parkers Crossroads during the Ardennes campaign, pitching German panzer grenadiers against a collection of US forces thrown into the battle. It also permitted a thorough play test of all the Deluxe edition rules, especially the command rules. The US objective was to hold the crossroads and prevent its use by German armour. The US player had limited resources and unknown reinforcements; on each reinforcement turn he diced to see what he received and where it enters the board. The US player did, however, have unlimited off board direct fire missions! The German objective was to secure both the crossroads and the hamlet, to permit their amour to continue its advance. A major German victory would be achieved if they could also break the US Battlegroup. The US Breakpoint was set at 14 and the German at 16, if the player loses double this the Battlegroup has broken completely and the game ends.

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TURN 1 -3. US set up with hidden deployment. The US player has just one reinforced platoon + MMG and a single 76mm A/T gun which he chooses to deploy just the left of the crossroads. He will receive no reinforcements until Turn 4. First to enter the board for the German player is a German Volksgrenadier company, who wisely adopt to skirt round the central crossroads area, and look for a potential flanking position. The German player is hesitant about sending his infantry too far forward, especially across open ground, so calls up his armoured support in the form of a reduced Hetzer platoon supported by a further Volksgrenadier platoon who soon discover the US positions! A swift firelight ensures which sees the 76mm knocked out, (mainly due German on table artillery support).

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TURN 4-6: US reinforcements arrive in the form of a light armoured company plus infantry support.

Realising he needs to secure the cross roads quickly the German player pushes up with his Hetzers to hold the crossroads and hamlet while exploit orders permit a useful deployment of another platoon  to reinforce his centre.
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TURN 7-9. More US reinforcements arrive, this time M10 tank destroyers, which move straight on to take the pressure off the beleaguered US infantry and the light armoured company. Unfortunately the German player, again assisted by winning the initiative and use of the exploit phase, manages to redeploy his Hetzers and knock out the lead M10's. Now the pressure is on for the US player as the head of the German armoured column now appears and slowly makes its way forward to the cross roads.

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TURNS 10 - 12. The US player is now on the back foot; his infantry are attempting to retake the hamlet but are pinned down by German machine gun fire and cannot make progress. The US Stuarts are reluctant to move out and engage as they can clearly see the German armour moving up. The Americans now fall back on their artillery support to break up the German strangle hold on the objective. Two turns of US artillery fire suppress a good many of the Volksgrenadiers, but fail to do significant impact and each minor US infantry attack is thrown back in turn.


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TURNS 13-15 - END GAME.  The German player now deploys his armoured reserves. He drives his Panzer Mk IV and Pumas straight at the crossroads to deal with the remaining US light tanks at longer range while the remaining halftrack borne infantry conduct an outflanking move, debussing and striking into the US right flank, rolling up their infantry line, as more and  more US infantry recoil from the German flank attack. Finally sensing his moment the German player hurls his armour forwards through the smoking wrecks of the Stuart company and out beyond the crossroads into the heart of the US position. US forces now collapse and stream from the battlefield.

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The rules? They worked well and accomplished what the Deluxe edition was intended to do, produce a game with slicker mechanisms than the 2nd edition creating a fluid, higher tempo game with rules that still provide “realistic” outcomes.

PanzerGrenadier Deluxe rules were written with four main aims; straightforward yet detailed rules sufficient to represent "wargame accurate" WW2 tactical combat, provide command friction, reward the use of period tactics and finally deliver an enjoyable game. It concentrates on command and battlefield friction. PanzerGrenadier delivers this command friction through three aspects; a varying amount of HQ Impetus per turn, (impetus represents "command momentum" coming down the command chain, in order to keep the battle plan moving), combat group activation requirement and a variable game turn length. Players will have to cope with this in built command friction, which means that players may feel just a fraction of the uncertainty and frustration felt by Company and Battlegroup commanders of WW2! The rules include a significant element of command and control, so players will need plan their battle and to consider carefully the positioning of their Battlegroup and Company HQs as they impact upon whether your platoons and combat groups are either activated or not.


DB

 

Last Edited By: DCRBrown Nov 26 13 5:45 PM. Edited 1 time

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Nov 28 13 1:34 PM

Very pretty game, the snow is surprisingly well done.

Good luck with the game - please sort it out soon so you can crack on with another Napoleonic scenario book!
best wishes
Jeremy

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