Saturday, July 21, 2012

Recon at Cosnes; Goblins in the Woods

This month we managed to get in a Saturday Afternoon Wargame (TM) at Stately Crawley Manor.  In fact we got in two!

Carl and I played Recon at Cosnes, the first scenario in Scott Fisher and Nathan Forney's Skirmish Campaigns book Rommel's Route to Verdun.  Meanwhile Jamie and George played a Lord of the Rings skirmish scenario designed by Jamie and using the Games Workshop rules.

Recon at Cosnes is a small scenario; only eight turns on a 3'x2' table using 20mm figures.  My Frenchies had one infantry squad whilst Carl had two small recon teams, one of them led by Erwin Rommel (the future Desert Fox).

The battlefield - top left, the field through which Rommel will advance.
Top right, the woods through which Lt Kirl will advance.
Middle left, the hill with oat bundles behind which shelter elements of
the French 101st Infantry Regiment.
The game play we pretty fast moving and as a result I didn't take very many photos.  We started at one o'clock with a brief run through of the rules and by three we were finished!

Lt Rommel's reconnaissance team advances though the ripening crops.
I'd chosen to deploy the French behind my newly completed oat bundles because the Variable Attachments section of the scenario allowed me to do so and because I thought it would be a shame not to use them.

Carl's approach was to advance astride the road.  As I'd deployed all of my troops on the hill to the east,  Lt Rommel was walking straight at twice his number of French infantry.  

The French - that marker on the right is one of the locations from which the
Germans could have observed the village of Bleid.
Carl could probably have won the game if he had left Rommel to his fate and sent Lt Kirn to observe the village from the viewpoint at the far end of "his" woods.  However, perhaps concerned to ensure that the future hero didn't bite the dust prematurely, Kirn emerged from the woods and began to maneuver towards the French.
Rommel's men (left) have spread out and are taking casualties.  Meanwhile, in the
background, Lt Kirn's men are emerging from the woods.
I reminded Carl of the need to move Kirn towards the observation point but moments later rolled the volley of fire from the French that was to prove decisive.  Kirn and two of his men died instantly whilst three more were badly injured.

Lt Kirn's patrol is hit by a wickedly accurate volley of fire from the French.
Carl was no longer able to achieve his victory conditions and I began to withdraw off table to the east. Sadly, a complete victory was snatched from me when my squad leader and a couple of men fell dead to the last straggling volley from the Germans.

We ended up with a 12:3 victory points score in favour of the French.  This gives the French two attachments credits to spend on the forces for the next scenario Contact at Hill 325.

Meanwhile, Jamie and George had been playing a scenario in which George's Dwarves were split into two groups.  Balin and some guards had to hold out in some rubble against a goblin attack reinforced by a cave troll, whilst a bunch a Dwarf rangers raced to reinforce them.

I didn't get many pics of that game but here they are:
Somewhere in the rubble Balin's about to meet a bloody fate...

... while the Dwarven Rangers are delayed in the dense woods.

The final moments of Balin.


Tom Zunder said...

I am very unaware of Rommel's early career. Was this a WW2 battle, he wasn't a WW1 veteran was he?

Counterpane said...

Nope, WW1.

Rommel began WW1 as a Lieutenant commanding a platoon in the 7th company of the 124th infantry Regiment. In the 1920s he wrote a book "Attacks" about his experiences. This scenario is taken from that book.