Friday 22 September 2023

Flames of War: Operation GARDEN: A Theme Too Far?


Last night the Wollongong Wargamers had a theme night, based on a certain film:

Daniel whose idea the theme was, is pictured centre-right below, behind the Bolt Action aspect of the evening, which featured the 101st Airborne fight for the Son Bridge over the Wilhelmina canal.

Daniel devised the Flames of War scenario for the breakout attack of XXX Corps, led by the Guards Armoured Division, on 17th September from the start line:

 to Valkenswaard, right over the other corner of the table:

We pooled our Sherman resources for this one! 

The scenario was based on the 'No Retreat' mission, with bonus points for the number of Sherman troops the Guards Armoured could get off the other end of the table.

Ed, pictured below, and I were the German defenders. Daniel and Darren were Michael Caine and Edward Fox for the evening!

We deployed one platoon from Fallschirmjager-Regiment-6 well forward on the edge of the woods and kept the other further back as a reserve. We had a platoon of PaK40s in ambush and 2 platoons of Panthers in deep reserve. The objective was strongly covered by a pair of 88s.

The GAD put their multitude of 25 Pounders to good use in keeping our infantry pinned.

We had lots of lovely ambush opportunities, unfortunately by dint of pre-planned arty DFs and diligent recce our opportunities to deploy the PaKs steadily narrowed.

But once the Irish Guards struck the minefield, the time was right to spring the ambush!

However, my die rolling was truly pitiful:

On the bright side, our gallant Fallschirms repelled an assault by the Guardsmen!

However by Turn 3 things were looking up - the Allied column was snarled up around the minefields and the PaKs were starting to get their aim in, and best of all, our reinforcements arrived!

Ed and I agreed on an 'Anvil Attack' approach - he with thicker armoured Late Panthers would attack the column head on in conjuction with our 2 88s...

Whilst my platoon would work its way into the deep flank and come up on the column from the flank.


Fortunately for us, the Tiffies failed to range in, and, the column in disarray and wedged by Panthers, the Allies decided to fall back, brew some tea, and call it a day.

'Panfers...Farsends of 'em...'

Over on the Bolt Action table, the gallant 101st Airborne succeeded in seizing one end of the Son Bridge, 

but were unable to eject the resolute defenders from the other end. To coin a phrase, the Allies went a bridge too far...

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