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(More) Air Support Training On VASL, J-048 "Blood Enemies" (John vs Robin)

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(More) Air Support Training On VASL, J-048 "Blood Enemies" (John vs Robin) Empty (More) Air Support Training On VASL, J-048 "Blood Enemies" (John vs Robin)

Post by John Knowles on 5/15/2019, 23:27

J-048 “Blood Enemies”
Last Monday, Robin and I completed our VASL game of J-048 “Blood Enemies”.  This scenario is played on board 24 and depicts a Yugoslavian attack against a Croatian village, with Stuka dive bomber aircraft arriving to help the Croats. The Yugoslavs attack with 12 (4x 457, 8x 437) squads, 3 leaders, 4 SWs, and 2 FT-17M tanks. The Croats defend with 10.5 (347) squads, 2 leaders, 5 SWs, and a crewed 65* Inf gun. On turn 4, 2 ‘39 DB with bombs arrive to reinforce the Croatians (but must leave at the end of turn 6). To win at the end of 8 full turns, the Yugoslavs must amass more VPs than the Croats (VPs = CVPs, plus 1 VP per stone building controlled).  
Continuing on our current theme of familiarizing Robin with the Air Support (E7) rules, Robin played the attacking Yugoslavs (Allied Minor), whilst I played the defending Croatians (Axis Minor). No balance was in effect. Both sides are fragile in this scenario, but in a points game, I can’t help but feel that the FT-17Ms are a big (10 CVP) liability when the Stukas show up. The Yugoslavs will likely control most of the 7 stone buildings, but if the Stukas knock out both vehicles, then the Yugoslavs are going to hurt the Croats a lot more than the Croats hurt them (the deficit is also antagonized by not doubling the CVPs for captured units/Guns). The Yugoslavs do have a HMG, which gives some respectable AA defense and a better overall side, so perhaps it isn’t so bad. Both sides are well capable of falling apart with their brittle ELR of 2, so its anyone’s game really. In essence, the Yugoslavs will hold the initiative for the first 4 turns, but the arrival of the Stukas will definitely slow down their assault for the next 2. If the Yugoslavs are still in decent shape, they can then resume their assault for the final 2 turns.
I set up in mostly stacks of 3 (to disguise SMCs, SWs), with the heavy weapons (MMG, 50*mtr) around the V2 building. The 65* Inf gun goes in U5, not too close to the front, as it (and its crew) gifts an easy 4 CVPs for its loss. My plan is simple; try and give as good as I get, and take out the tanks when the Stukas arrive. In order to stop the HMG providing AA fire, I’ll try to go after it whenever its would-be operator leaves the protection of buildings. In short, I’m playing for points, as that is what the VCs are all about. Robin set up his 2 tanks non-adjacent (so he would need to make Non-platoon move TCs as per D14.23), with all his infantry infantry along row I at lvl -1.

(More) Air Support Training On VASL, J-048 "Blood Enemies" (John vs Robin) J-048-10

On turns 1 and 2, Robin pushed forward with calculated aggression, and my Croats were able to get some useful IFT results, which saw a number of units disrupt, which later provided targets of sport for my ROF weapons to accumulate CVPs with. By the end of 2 turns, Robin had managed to overrun 1 squad and kill it in CC with a Berserk (A15.4) squad, but aside from that, my Croats were doing quite a good job of holding it together.

(More) Air Support Training On VASL, J-048 "Blood Enemies" (John vs Robin) J-048-11

On turns 3 and 4, Robin does a fine job of rallying his broken units and re-energizes his attack. But then my ROF weapons go on a ROF spree, and the 65*Inf gun immobilizes a FT-17M. Robin loses 6 CVPs to the carnage, but worse yet, his HMG ends turn 4 in a building (meaning that it cannot be used for Light AA (E7.51) fire). The Stukas are now on the board and ready to attack.

(More) Air Support Training On VASL, J-048 "Blood Enemies" (John vs Robin) J-048-12

On turns 5 and 6, Robin’s Yugoslavs make little progress vs the Croats, the Stukas destroy both FT-17s, and the HMG is briefly captured by the Croats !!! By the end of turn 6, Robin has captured 3 buildings (and doesn’t look likely to capture more than 4 of the 7) and suffered 22 CVPs to my 8. With no realistic possibility of overcoming such a deficit, Robin decides to call it a day, and concedes victory to my Croats.

(More) Air Support Training On VASL, J-048 "Blood Enemies" (John vs Robin) J-048-13

(It seems like it was a one-sided contest at fist glance. But if you subtract the 10 CVPs of the tanks (wrecked by the Stukas), then the Yugoslavs are only 5 points behind with 2 turns to go, it’d still be game on)
More importantly, Robin got a better insight of the mechanics and impact of Air Support on the ASL battlefield.
John Knowles
John Knowles

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

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