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Code of Bushido: ASL Module 8» Forums » Sessions

Subject: AAR of 65 Red star, red sun "Biting the dust" rss

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Martí Cabré

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This is an AAR of ASL scenario 65 "Red star, red sun" that I played using PBEM with Txema from July to December 2012.

"Red star, red sun" is set on Nomonhan, Manchukuo on July 1939. It features a Russian infantry battalion supported by seven light tanks attacking a Japanese position defended by two infantry companies with two AT guns and aided by three planes with bombs.

In order to win, the Russians must reach the other side of the map with enough VP.

This scenario is peculiar in that features an uncommon front (Manchukuo), with a desert terrain (it is not steppe terrain but per SSR all hammada is brush) featuring hard earth, sand, dunes and deir. With such a plain terrain LOS lines can reach a great distance but there is light dust in the air (extra hindrance of half a dr) and last but not least the Russians have two Creeping Barrages that slowly advance towards the Japanese positions.

I had not played before with Creeping Barrages (nor desert terrain nor planes, for the matter) and, beyond the danger they present to eh enemy infantry (which is not much, they did not hurt anyone), in desert conditions they create a +2 hindrance per hex traversed, which means that if the Russian units stick close to the barrages, a lot of LOS from the Japanese side is simply blocked for +6 hindrance.


This is our setup:


I took the Japanese and Txema took the Russians. For my defensive setup I used the brush to hide HIP units and some deirs to put the foxholes. The Russians would be able to see the foxholes but not the units IN the foxholes so it could be used to escape murderous fire or to rally, if need be.

I also boresighted some of the Locations that the Russians could use to establish bases of fire, mainly the crests of the sand dunes and some of my own foxholes, after they get eventually captured.

I placed one AT on each side of the board maximizing the LOS through brush and dunes and also one big MG on each side, so fire lanes in a diagonal pattern can criss-cross and hinder the attacks.

My center was more or less empty as the two creeping barrages would stomp it. The only real units there were under foxholes to get that +4 and there were also some dummies here and there to make my opponent guess.

Txema decided to go for a frontal advance in the center, with no wings, close to the creeping barrages.


This is the situation after a couple of turns:


As you can see, the two creeping barrages (green and blue) are fearsome and awesome. The create a smoke barrier that hinders my LOS and also menace to trample any unit caught under its path (the latter did not quite happen, but the menace was there).

The Russians are advancing close to the barrage, all grouped in the central position.

Up until this point there has been little action as the creeping barrages plus the dust hindrance make for no possible or realistic defensive shots. The Russians steadily advance and the Japanese clinch their teeth and check and check again their weapons hidden in the brushes waiting for the barrage to lift.


Here the Russian advance has been checked:


Finally the barrages allow for certain LOS and the shooting has started. The Japanese planes have arrived and have wrecked a Russian tank and immobilized another one, finished of by the Japanese right flank AT gun.

Russian and Japanese light mortars start to drop shells on each other without much effect. The Russians use positions on the soft sand to soften the effects of the HE ammo.

The creeping barrage has left unscathed the few Japanese units holding the center and on the Japanese right some units start to move to threaten with a Banzai Charge against the Russian left, which is now held by a lone squad with a MMG.

A big group of squads led by a Commissar are grouping in the Russian right with the intention to assault their counterpart Japanese MG while the Russian reinforcement team is entering the map board.


Here is the end of the game:


And then the Russians launch their attack on their right flank. Two tanks succumb to the Japanese AT gun and some squads break by a lone Japanese HIP squad. The Russian line is much in the form of a column and can make much fire pressure while in the center the light mortars have been firing for many turns achieving nothing.

On the Russian right the reinforcements have dealt with a HIP Japanese and a tank has been blown ablaze by a CH shot of a Japanese AT gun. Broken Russian infantry lie scattered all around the are whil in the Russian left vanguard the Japanese are steadily advancing threatening with a Banzai Charge that still has not happened.

The Creeping Barrage has passed the Japanese defensive lines without hurting anyone and now it does not block LOS anymore.

Assessing the situation as a really difficult one, with only a tank left and clear LOS for the Japanese units, Txema decides to call off the attack and concede the game.

Japanese victory!
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Brian Hart
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Interesting. I'll have to look this one up. I don't recall seeing it before. Thanks for the AAR!
 
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Martí Cabré

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You're welcome.
It's quite an unusual scenario.
 
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J. R. Tracy
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Great report - this one is a ton of fun, and very unusual as you say. I eked out an IJA victory myself, thanks to a desperate Banzai charge against a cluster of Soviets that had reached Bd 28. There is a *lot* going on, so you have to be prepared to dive into the rule book a few times before it's over.

JR
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Martí Cabré

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ASLNoob wrote:
Marti, either you are lucky enough to be able to play a lot of ASL, or you are reaching back into the past for some of these AARs!

Either way, they are great. I like the way that you tend to play the more unusual scenarios.


Pup, at the beginning of each AAR I specify the time that took playing each scenario. This one took six months.

I usually play several PBEM scenarios with different people, all at the same time. As they take months to complete, I can spend a lot of weeks with no news and then finish four or five scenarios all at the same time, like this december.

About the scenarios, I combine two things: trying to play all the scenarios from the core modules (Beyond Valor, etc) and then play selected scenarios from packs, magazines and so. Both paths can led to play some unusual scenarios.
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