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December 18 AM

 

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"Send in the US Airborne!"

German 18 AM Allied 18 AM  

Ger18AMAdvance.jpg (204552 bytes)The US 17PM defense was quite stingy and the Germans again resort to straight ahead slogging.  As always, the main goal is attrition and this will continue to be the case until I'm well into the mid-game.  Randy offered up two units for elimination, either by being surroundable or by virtue of being reduced and in the front lines subject to a high odds attack.  Near Eupen, I finally committed mech forces but I kept it to a minimal amount in order to keep the pressure up in the middle of the 6th Panzer Army front.  

The random event was the rather innocuous "German commando deception prevents bridge deception."

My only trick move was what I'd call a "delayed Angriff":  I broke my attacks into two components and had Randy resolve a bunch of preliminary attacks.  The second bunch of attacks started off with an Angriff 2-1(-2) that could have also been resolved as a 3-1(-2) regular attack.  (Of course, the intent of the Angriff was to surround an adjacent defender.)  Why break up the attacks?  The main goal was to see how my initial attacks went before deciding whether or not I needed to risk a battle that would only be 'won' on a 1 or 2 die roll result.  Additionally, there was a chance that Randy would decide to take a chance and commit artillery to another battle which would raise the possible Angriff odds to 3-1(-2).  Against a player of Randy's experience, though, I'm confident he evaluated the situation with the Angriff possibility in mind.  Breaking up attacks is often advisable, especially if you don't want to strain your brain too much with conditional combats and advances.

Post-Combat Comments:  The gimmick worked!  Randy obligingly rolled a 1 on my Angriff attack and the ADV 2 result allowed me to surround the 9/47 regiment.  The die rolls clearly were better, as measured by impact, than the only slightly above normal LQ rating would indicate.

With 3 US units eliminated and another unit taking a hit, I'm satisfied with this turn's attrition.  I'm a little concerned with the number of bridges Randy's been taking down and will husband my bridging resources carefully.  (2 of 8 used so far.)  My next near term goal will be to maximize my opportunity to capture the Francorchamp fuel dump intact; I suspect it is in 1809 because he defended it this turn but this may be part of some elaborate ruse.  =)

--Tom

US18AMMove.jpg (215479 bytes)IMO, this turn resulted in the best attack die rolls so far. Tom took a big chance with a 2-1 Angriff, and I think he should be commended. The 1/3 chance of a successful result not only eliminated a full strength 5 ER unit, but opened up the Northern shoulder as well. The somewhat negligible downside is that he may not be able to attain a follow-up flanking attack with either division of the 1st SS Panzer Corps due to the Angriff advance locations. Had the attack not succeeded, I think the German 18AM turn would have been a bit of a wash. That's now hindsight. To retain a strong, Allied Northern shoulder will now be a challenge.

The upcoming turn will be the last with the Army Boundary in effect, and I plan on using it to my advantage. Prior to 18AM, I wanted to direct some of 6th Pz Army toward Eupen. Now, I definitely think otherwise. Eupen and the forest hexes to the SW are low hanging fruit for the panzers. For this reason, I very much need to hold at least one air unit back to cancel German ground support on a key attack. This means Skorzeny will get his sneak attempt after all. The only alternative is to give Tom the least tantalizing target. Tom may cleverly decide to avoid attacking it this turn to surround the defending unit in the following turn and bag not only the dump but an Allied unit to boot. My response to that tactic will be to replace the full strength defending uint with a reduced unit and take satisfaction in delaying the westward advance for another turn. I wrestled with abandoning Noville, and came to the conclusion that sacrificing a reduced unit in the town to ensure the airborne's arrival at the Ourthe River crossings on 19AM is worth the sacrifice. Bastogne is secure for at least another turn or two.

-- Randy

LQ Rating:  3.39 LQ Rating:  4.67 (1 of 3 bridges demolished.)
Public Comments:

German Combat

Red = Outcome (LQ Rating)   Blue = German unit   Green = Allied Unit

Random Event:  German commandos prevent bridge destruction.(4)

2128: 3-1(-1) = 2 = 1 = D3 (3)

    28/110 to Bastogne

    5/15, Brandenburger to 2127

2126:  5-1(-2) = 5 = 3 = D4 (1)

    4/12(r) Eliminated

    212/423 to 2226; 212/316 to 2225; 2/3, 2/304 to 2224;

    5/14, 62/183 to 2223


1913. 3-1(-1) = 1 = 0 = D4 (5)

    9/CCB to 2211

    12/27, 3/9 to 1913

2218:  3-1(-2) = 2 = 0 = D4 (4)

    28/112 to 2618

    Lehr 901, 116/156 to 2319; Lehr Recon to 2218;

    Lehr 902 to 2217

1610:  6-1(-1) = 4 = 3 = 1D1 (6)

    2/38(r) Eliminated

    18/295 to 1610; 150 Brigade to 1711

2016:  @6-1(-1) = 1 = 0 = 1D4 (3)

    99/394 reduced to 2314

    Lehr/130, 62/190 to 2016; 116/60 to 2117

1605:  2-1(-2) ANGRIFF = 1 = -1 = Adv2 (1.5)

    1SS/1 to 1403; 1SS/2 to 1707; Peiper, Detrich to 1507.

1303:  6-1 = 2 = 1D2 (3)

    9/47 Eliminated

    12SS/26 to 1302; 326/751, 326/752 to 1303

Allied Demolitions:

1. 1912 (1-4) = 5 = Fizzle.  (5.5)

2. 1913 (1-3) = 3 = Boom! (2)

3. 1403 (1-3) = 6 = Fizzle. (5)