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  #11  
Old October 12th, 2010, 03:22 PM

RERomine RERomine is offline
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Default Re: DAR: Italy vs. GB - North Africa 6/40

Turn 9

Took out an A10 in Alpha's sector. The enemy evened the ledger when a Matilda II destroyed one of my tanks. My guys put steel on target at 150m, but no joy. It just left them with an irritated enemy who ruined their day. With all the smoke in the area, I'm losing sight of the enemy, but I know they had 14 tanks in this area and I've only destroyed two. I misjudged the timing on the bombers. They come in next turn. I may have to resort to assaults to destroy the enemy tanks. At least I'm holding their infantry back. Still hitting them with light mortars, but plotted two medium sections as well.

Traded tanks in Bravo sector as well. At least when I kill one of the enemy tanks, I know it costs typically twice as much as mine do. I punched a hole in another A10 as well. Two left here, with three Matilda Is moving up. My tanks from Yankee will duck into the gully next turn. Enemy infantry seems to be stuck 300m out. Light mortar round still dropping on enemy.

One platoon of infantry in front of Charlie now. No tanks supporting, so it shouldn't be a problem.

Last approaching truck mounted 2-pdr destroyed in front of Delta. Enemy infantry company advancing without tank support. Three squads ripped up and running so far.

Alpha and X-Ray tanks only ones engaging south of the salient now. Any enemy infantry that pops up gets cut down by Alpha infantry. Two tanks look like they are going to try to move through the rough, but they won't get far. ATGs punched a hole in an A13 and capped one Dingo. All three of the A13s might have been hit at least once so far. Two Matilda Is are undamaged, but not a major threat. There is a Vickers tank in the area as well, but also not a concern. Two sections of medium mortars are still hitting the enemy south of the gap.

Casualties

Friendly: 2xM11/39 tank destroyed. Estimated 10 casualties.

Enemy: 2xA10 tank, 1x2-pdr Portee trucks and 1xDaimler Dingo destroyed. Estimated 25 casualties.
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  #12  
Old October 12th, 2010, 08:16 PM

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Default Re: DAR: Italy vs. GB - North Africa 6/40

Turn 10

Well, the bombers came in. No damage to the enemy tanks. They just buttoned up. I lost a few men as one bomber went a little too long. I'm going to have to deal with the Matildas the hard way. At least they are slow and maybe I will get the whole force to break because aside from the Matildas, I'm kicking the daylight out of the rest of the enemy force. This will be a messy fight, but my guys are hanging in there. Enemy infantry is doing some shooting, but the platoon plus in the sector is fragmented. They did manage to take out one of my light mortars, but with a max range of 600m, they have to be close to the line. Alpha is hanging in there.

Another enemy A10 in Bravo's sector was destroyed. There is one left and it has been been damaged. It is scooting off to the Bravo-Charlie boundary with three Matilda Is. One more Matilda I is still in the sector moving forward. There doesn't seem to be any infantry right now.

Charlie now has two platoons to their front. I have no tanks to help, but my machine guns should have a field day.

Most of enemy infantry in front of Delta have been turned. Between fire from tanks and machine guns, many enemy are down with their squads running. The bad guys took a beating here.

One enemy squad trying to move around north flank of engineers. I suspect it is an enemy squad from an earlier attack that has recovered some. The British seem to rally pretty quickly.

Along Foxtrot's southern front, ATGs destroyed two A13s, while infantry destroyed a Bren carrier by assault. Not much for enemy infantry around. Only two squads visible. I've got a major fire power edge here. I did take some casualties from the remaining A13 and Vickers tank, mainly because I can't get LOS on them from any of my tanks or ATGs. Mortar rounds continue to fall on enemy forces. There are a couple of Bren carriers I'm trying to get.

Casualties

Friendly: 1x45mm Brixia mortar destroyed. Estimated 15 casualties.

Enemy: 2xA13 tanks, 1xA10 tanks and 1xBren Carrier destroyed. Estimated 25 casualties.
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  #13  
Old October 12th, 2010, 10:19 PM

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Default Re: DAR: Italy vs. GB - North Africa 6/40

Turn 11

The enemy tanks are still pushing up to Alpha, but very slowly. Some of the tanks have turned to the south southwest, heading toward the northern objective group and Bravo. I have 13 tanks in the way, so it would be a fight. There are five chewed up enemy infantry squads in front of Alpha, but mostly running. Alpha might hold out if the enemy keeps changing direction. I have two tanks that might try to catch the enemy from behind if the chance presents itself. My mortar rounds started dropping in the area, so I'll adjust to try to hit the enemy tanks.

There are eight enemy tanks in front of Bravo. Two are Matilda IIs, four are Matilda Is and there is one holed A10. The damage on the A10 must not be too bad, because it is still moving forward. Just a few shot up enemy infantry in this sector as well. This is where the next big fight will probably be located.

Still only two enemy platoons in front of Charlie. Machine guns, tanks and small arms are hitting them, but marksmanship was off this turn. I have been focusing a lot of fire into Delta's sector, so Charlie isn't the support needed. The enemy is inflicting some casaulties on my force here.

About two enemy squads running in Delta's sector. Only about six are still trying to move forward. My infantry isn't firing because the enemy is too far away. Machine guns and tanks are doing the work.

Engineers lit up enemy squad trying to get by. He ducked into a low spot very quickly.

Pushed two of Foxtrot's squads forward to jump the enemy A13 tank. Assaults failed during my turn, but they capped it during op-fire. That takes care of the AFVs with tank killing guns, so my armored cars will move back up. There are still three enemy squads visible, but two are pinned. One moved up next the Vickers tank, but he will be helpless by himself. Friendly mortar fire damaged one of the Bren carriers, but they are still hanging around.

Casualties

Friendly: Estimated 10 casualties.

Enemy: 1xA13 tank destroyed. Estimated 25 casualties.
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  #14  
Old October 12th, 2010, 11:21 PM

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Default Re: DAR: Italy vs. GB - North Africa 6/40

Turn 12

Alpha tried assualting a Matilda II without luck. Four squads tried, but only two had the brass to make the effort. I also moved my two tanks up and took a few shots, watching them bounce off a Matilda I and Matilda II at 150m. They were rear shots no less, but they are hard to kill. I'll try some more since I have a swarm in the area.

My tanks in the gully with Bravo took a hit. Some smoke cleared and two were killed by an A10. One got a shot before dying, just to watch his round bounce off at 250m. Enemy infantry tried to push up through the smoke of the burning vehicles just to get cut up by my infantry waiting behind it.

Enemy force in front of Charlie is starting to dissolve. I went after them with more machine guns this turn. There enemy squads are bugging out, leaving five but they are pinned.

Still cutting up enemy infantry, but some are starting to regain composure and return. Enemy artillery helped their cause by taking out one of my machine gun sections. Three battalions cut loose at him, which is just a bit of over kill

The excitement picked up for the engineers. A whole platoon of reinvigorated enemy infantry came up from some low ground, supported by an armored car. Shots traded, but no damage.

Two of Foxtrot's squads took a beating. One, routed by the A13 last turn before it died, bolted out into the open and got ripped. Another squad in the rough also got hit and is running. Since the enemy doesn't have any tank killing guns around, I'm slowly pushing a platoon of tanks through the rough. Once they get through, they should have a field day.

Casualties

Friendly: Estimated 20 casualties.

Enemy: Estimated 20 casualties.
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  #15  
Old October 13th, 2010, 12:27 AM

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Default Re: DAR: Italy vs. GB - North Africa 6/40

Turn 13

Two platoons of Alpha are swarming around the enemy tanks. All assaults failed this time as well, but had some of the tanks retreating. I pulled my two tanks up again and capped a Matilda I. Unfortunately, the Matilda IIs regained their composure and destroyed both tanks. Mortar fire rained on on some other enemy tanks, getting them to button up.

Bravo and Alpha teamed up and jumped a Matilda II and actually managed to immobilize it. A combined effort between Bravo and Yankee tanks resulted in the enemy A10 being destroyed, plus a few infantry. Mortar rounds also dropped on a Matilda I in the sector.

One platoon of infantry moving toward Charlie, again. It is hard to really support them with machine guns or tanks because anything north of them is screen by burning vehicles and everything south is too far away to really be effective. At least the enemy isn't approaching with much.

Three Matilda IIs heading toward Delta. The lead tank is about 500m out. X-Ray tanks in the area are going to have to duck for cover. All but two enemy squads are running, so infantry won't be a factor.

Only one engineer squad could draw a bead on the enemy platoon heading toward him, so he just popped smoke. I'll wait for the enemy to move out of the blind spot where more units can open up on them.

Two X-Ray tanks with Foxtrot are almost clear of the rough, with two more just behind. They got LOS of three enemy squads coming up and cut them up. Three Matilda Is are coming up, but their .50 cals. don't worry me as much. I have to be careful, but I should be fine. Mortars were able to finally destroy one of the Bren carriers. They have been sitting in one spot for at least six turns.

Casualties

Friendly: 2xM11/39 tanks destroyed. Estimated 15 casualties.

Enemy: 1xMatilida I tank, 1xA10 tank and 1xBren Carrier destroyed. Estimated 20 casualties.
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  #16  
Old October 13th, 2010, 01:33 AM

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Default Re: DAR: Italy vs. GB - North Africa 6/40

Turn 14

What it amounts to up north is flesh against steel. Alpha is getting still hanging in there, but it is hurting them. More men down, but another Matilda II is immobilized. Maybe they can get a kill next turn. The rest of the enemy are deflecting to the south. Only a Matilda I and A10 are hanging with the immobilizied Matilida II. Mortar rounds still falling on the shifting enemy tanks. Maybe I can immobilize one or more with indirect. I kill is out of the question with these. This area is a true brawl.

Bravo is deployed a bit looser than Alpha, so the enemy tanks might be a problem. If I can neutralize more of the enemy Matilda IIs heading this way, my tanks can take care of the rest. This will cost a lot of men, but my tanks have been totally ineffective against them.

Enemy infantry in front of Charlie is still fighting, but slowly losing ground. The take fire, break, retreat 50m and are shooting next turn. One of the Matilda Is referenced above has popped out of the smoke in this area. I have one Zulu tank that got separated from the rest, so it is helping out here.

Delta is bracing for the enemy Matilda IIs moving up. In the meantime, they are dealing with some enemy infantry to the left of their sector. It is only about a platoon, but my tanks in supporting them have ducked for cover from the Matildas. They haven't fired yet, but I know I can't destroy them at 150m, much less 500m, but the 2-pdr can kill mine easily. The Matilda IIs have a Matilda I pulling up the rear and a truck mounted 2-pdr on their flank. I think it is the one I damaged earlier. All enemy infantry is running.

Smoke cleared near the engineers position, so a fire fight broke out with enemy platoon again. Only one of my units can see them, so I'll just duck into the wadi. The position is solid and they won't get me out of it with just a platoon.

The first two of my tanks cleared the rough in Foxtrot's position and engaged and destroyed a Matilda I. Two more on coming up, but won't fair any better. There is are two Vickers tanks around, but one is immobilized. Once all the tanks are dealt with, my tanks will be able to mop up the enemy infantry. The far right Foxtrot platoon is moving up to help. Mortars capped the remaining Bren carrier.

Casualties

Friendly: Estimated 15 casualties.

Enemy: 1xMatilida I tank and 1xBren Carrier destroyed. Estimated 15 casualties.

Rather than screen prints, I've attached my current save if anyone wants to see the status of this battle. It is a real knock down, drag out fight.
Attached Files
File Type: zip Saved Games.zip (247.2 KB, 93 views)
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  #17  
Old October 13th, 2010, 09:13 AM
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Default Re: DAR: Italy vs. GB - North Africa 6/40

Hmm - I must remember to change the AI buy routines to not buy Matilda 1 in North Africa in the first months of the war.

Also - you bought level bombers - Why??. Level bombers are for a pre-plotted fire-blow (and are really only for scenario use - e.g. the opening carpet bombings in some Normandy scenarios). If you don't pre-plot them before the battle, then they have about a 12 turn delay for impromptu calls. They do not target anything specifically either (unlike strike planes) - but simply go to an X,Y (with deviation) and offload the bombs and then leave.

Cheers
Andy
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  #18  
Old October 13th, 2010, 11:32 AM

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Default Re: DAR: Italy vs. GB - North Africa 6/40

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mobhack View Post
Hmm - I must remember to change the AI buy routines to not buy Matilda 1 in North Africa in the first months of the war.
No Matilda Is would be fine as long as they don't get replaced with Matilda IIs

Quote:
Also - you bought level bombers - Why??. Level bombers are for a pre-plotted fire-blow (and are really only for scenario use - e.g. the opening carpet bombings in some Normandy scenarios). If you don't pre-plot them before the battle, then they have about a 12 turn delay for impromptu calls. They do not target anything specifically either (unlike strike planes) - but simply go to an X,Y (with deviation) and offload the bombs and then leave.

Cheers
Andy
I picked up the level bombers because I thought they would be perfect for hitting the east-west passes through the wadis. My three registration points are in passes and the turn delay is only 1 if used then. The problem was I opted for number of bombs instead of size of bombs, so they were ineffective. As it is, I normally don't use aircraft other than spotters anyhow. Too many experiences with blue on blue attacks in the past, but I might be thinking about SPWaW. I haven't played that for years, but it sometimes is difficult to remember which nuances belong to which game model. Anyhow, I knew I would need something to deal with the Matilda IIs and level bombers were what I selected.

The major problem, which has nothing to do with the game design or anything, is Italian equipment is bad across the board. Infantry and artillery is fine and on par with that of other countries of the time. When you look at tanks, ATGs and aircraft, the Italians were well equipped to fight WWI again. Maybe this is no different than any other country at the time with the exception of Germany, but with the Italians it doesn't get better over time. Two years after this battle, the Italians are still relying on that lame 47mm gun for tanks and ATGs in home grown equipment. Once this battle is over, I'm going to have a vexing problem on how to re-equip my force and stay reasonably realistic

Cheers,

Ray
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  #19  
Old October 14th, 2010, 04:21 AM
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Default Re: DAR: Italy vs. GB - North Africa 6/40

Probably the only way to sensibly play Italian is with a leg rifle battalion core and hardly any armour.

The only armour you probably should have is a couple of the later semoventes per rifle company - the M42 and M43 with the 75/L32 is marginal but usable from 6/42.

The M13/40 is marginal in 40 and dead meat in 41. A few as mobile AT resource perhaps, working flank ambushes (they cannot stand frontally). But definitely not a tank-heavy core.

Some infantry get the pzgranate A/T grenade 41 in 1942 or so onwards.

The Italian 81mm mortar is good for the time - reasonable range (esp versus the 3 inch the UK has!).

The 3RO 90L53 Was in reality rare as hen's teeth ( a few dozen, if that,deployed). Maybe allow yourself a pair of them for matilda tank plinking. Problem is they are soft, and only 2 wheel drive so stuck to roads and good going.

Armour probably should be limited to a small fast-mover recce type platoon or so to take objectives. A few armoured cars (useful if you have the 47mm ones, the 20mm is only good for daimler dingos) and/or the little baby APC like the AS42 or As47.

If you do not buy lots of expensive armour (and yours are not worth the points - a gift for the enemy AT gunners really - till you get semovente with 75L32), and off map arty then the AI will not have too much points to spend on lots of tanks.

So a rifle battalion core (3-4 companies, maybe one in light trucks), an off map howitzer bty, support company with mortars and ATG and a few semovente and a platoon or 2 of tin can scout vehicles attached. (Play on 80 wide maps and/or add a few turns since you will have a marching force)

Cheers
Andy
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  #20  
Old October 14th, 2010, 07:24 AM

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Default Re: DAR: Italy vs. GB - North Africa 6/40

Turn 15

Back to action with what I have at the moment. Thanks for the suggestions Andy.

Alpha assaulted the immobilized Matilda II again. It isn't destroyed, but the crew was rattled enough to bail. They won't last out the next turn. Assaults were also made against a Matilda I, but no luck there. Alpha is a disorganized mess, but still pretty spry.

Smoke is being popped by my infantry along Bravo's line. Assaults tend to work better if the tank blunders into the assaulting unit. At least that is my impression. Even if I'm wrong, my infantry can't move up against a group of tanks without getting shot up. I'm trying to make the battle field smaller in these areas. In the meantime, ATGs from the plateau are still slinging steel at targets of opportunity. There is an A10 with two new holes. Mortar fire is still coming up, but hitting the tail end of the advancing tanks. Further south along Bravo's line, there are a few enemy squads, but they aren't advancing. One fragment was dispatched by machine gun fire from the plateau. Those guns up there are doing a good job of pinning down the enemy infantry.

The north edge of Charlie's line is still getting pressured by two enemy Matilda Is and a platoon of infantry. My tank took some shots at one of the Matildas, but he wasn't close enough to damage. Light mortar fire also pounded on the enemy infantry. Their infantry seems to be waivering.

Still waiting on the advancing Matilda IIs in Delta sector. Most enemy infantry has been sent packing, but at least one fresh squad has been spotted with the lead enemy tank. I have been pelting it with anything I can to keep it buttoned up. Machine guns and infantry guns have been hitting it. With luck, maybe one of my IGs will score a mobility kill. In the meantime, we wait. One thing I have to do is duck a platoon of my tanks into a gully. I've been popping smoke to screen them while they fire at infantry in Charlie and Delta sectors. They need to scoot before that smoke clears and they get hit by the Matilida 2-pdr guns. The enemy truck mounted 2-pdr was destroyed during op-fire by a machine gun. Those things think they are tank destroyers and are trying to advance when they should be picking a spot at long range and plinking away. Two mortar sections have been plotted on the enemy's line of advance. Anything and everything against those Matildas.

Engineers are shifting a bit. Given their position, they might be able to move north and hit the advancing Matilda IIs. The axis of advance is only about 400m to the north and I know my engineers could kill them. The problem is the nearby enemy platoon. They have my engineers pinned in their wadi right now. Light mortars hit the main enemy group, but the results are unknown. Since Echo is more or less behind the line with the engineers out front, I'm going to move them up and try to free up the engineers.

My tank platoon has cleared the wadi and rough in Foxtrot's sector. Once out, they destroyed another Matilda I and Vickers tank. I just noticed the crew bailed on the immobilized Vickers as well. One Matilda I left and this area should be clear of armor. At that point, I will push my units forward and clear the area of infantry.

Casualties

Friendly: Estimated 10 casualties.

Enemy: 1xMatilida I tank, 1xVickers VIb tank and 1x2-pdr Portee truck destroyed. Estimated 15 casualties.
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