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ASL-124 "On The Borderline" (John vs Robin)

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ASL-124 "On The Borderline" (John vs Robin) Empty ASL-124 "On The Borderline" (John vs Robin)

Post by John Knowles on 3/23/2019, 23:03

Last Friday evening, Robin and I finished our game of ASL-124 “On The Borderline”. This scenario depicts a Russian assault on a Finnish village (boards 3 and 4 end-on-end with Ground Snow in effect). The Finns defend with 12 squads (10x 648, 2x 538), 3 leaders, and 4 SWs. They also get a roadblock and HIP for the small group (2 squads, 1 leader, 2 SW) that sets up on board 4, and the remaining 10 squads that set up on board 3 get 10 (squad sized) horse counters. The Russians attack with 26 (447) squads, 4 leaders, 12 SWs (including 2 radios for 2 100mm OBA modules), and 2 BA-6 ACs. The Russians win by controlling 4+ stone buildings at the end of 12 full turns (Finns move first).
At first glance, it looks like the Finns are out-gunned in terms of FP, but the thin width of 1 board means that a few squads can completely plug up a board with residual. Also, the village is an entire board length away, so it takes 6-7 turns for the Russians to get there, never mind fighting through anyone. The Ground Snow really slows the BA-6 armored cars (no road rate, and an extra MP per hex), so it will take them several turns to catch up to the infantry as they try and get onto a road !!! The 2 OBA modules can only be directed onto board 4, but by the time they can be effective, the Finn border guards may well be long gone. There is the option of smoke, but either way, the OBA modules will likely be irrelevant before long. The Finns have to defend for a long while, so the last thing they want to is to be defeated in detail. The sooner the border guards join up with the board 3 forces, the better.
This game was played on VASL over several sessions, with Robin playing the Russians and with myself playing the Finns. Russian balance (adds a BA-6 AC and 7-0 leader) was in effect.
My plan from the start was to have the 10 648s deploy along the woods at the east edge of the board 3. The border guards would waste no time rushing back to join the others, first transferring their SWs, and then leading all the horses to the rear, as I could see them becoming a real liability if they were to fall into Russian hands. Buy time, fall back, and try not to die. Rinse and repeat for as long as possible. Although the Russians have more squads and many SWs, the Finn FP is more than adequate to really dish out some hurt if the Russian tries to advance in their face of their combined fire. Robin meanwhile set up his forces as close to the west as possible.

ASL-124 "On The Borderline" (John vs Robin) Asl-1221

On turns 1, my border guards race back to board 3, and the rest race eastward to join them at the east edge of board 3. For the first 3 turns, there are virtually no firing opportunities for either side. By the end of 3 game turns, the Finns are positioned in the woods along east end of board 3, with the Russians moving to meet them as fast as they can manage.

ASL-124 "On The Borderline" (John vs Robin) Asl-1220

On turn 4, my 2 538 squads are deployed into half-squads, and lead the horses to the rear. The Russians are walking today !!! Meanwhile, the Russian OBA drops smoke and his infantry clear the roadblock and open the road for the BA-6 ACs. The Russians are engaging the Finns by the end of turn 6 and the fight is now really on.

ASL-124 "On The Borderline" (John vs Robin) Asl-1219

On turns 7 and 8, my Finns hold the line, but begin to suffer a few casualties themselves. As I pull back, the Russians (with the help of cover and fire from their ACs) begin to push between the Finns. One group falls back, but the other isn’t extricating itself as fast, and is starting to get a bit isolated from the rest.

ASL-124 "On The Borderline" (John vs Robin) Asl-1222

On turns 9 and 10, the Russians manage to push along the south edge of the map, and an AC even gets to Y1 to cut off my units in the northeast board 3 woods. But I get lucky and manage to knock it out with a fortunately low MG TK DR. They will still have to run the HMG stack gauntlet, which now covers row Y.

ASL-124 "On The Borderline" (John vs Robin) Asl-1223

On turn 11, I pull my remaining Finns to the board 3 stone buildings. The NE group run the gauntlet as best they can, but only a couple of squads make it through unbroken, better then nothing I suppose. In the last turn, the Russians still need 3 stone buildings. The (20FP) HMG stack gets a ROF tear that breaks 2 Finn squads, then a Human Wave (A25.23) is launched towards R5. T4 will be easy enough to capture, but the 2 level buildings are a lot more difficult to clear out. All the remaining Russian assets are thrown at S3, but only a few are in position to advance and clear out the Finns. By the CCPh, the Russians need 4 CCs to go their way, but the Finns get the best of it, and only T4 falls to the Russians, and they fall short of victory by 2 buildings.

ASL-124 "On The Borderline" (John vs Robin) Asl-1224

A real fun scenario to play. It has a bit of a quiet start as each side moves into position, but its quite action packed from that point on. And despite being potentially ahistorical in terms of squad types and equipment, it is an easy scenario to recommend.
John Knowles
John Knowles

Posts : 99
Join date : 2017-05-02
Age : 52
Location : Wugu, Taipei County

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