With game set up completed, victory conditions checked, and QRS in-hand, the scenario was ready for its initial trial. As First Player, the German side acts first.
11:00 On the German left, the Germans begin their advance upon Tretten by moving on the two, unoccupied BUAs positioned between the two opposing deployment areas. The Germans lay smoke and then advance.
|Germans in the south advance|
Almost immediately, the German advance draws fire from the British held building at the base of the hill. The Germans suffer no casualties as the British section is marked with Op Fire. On the German right the mountain troops, on skis, advance toward the hills overlooking Tretten. German support weapons deployed in the center add into the advancing fire.
|Germans taking fire on the move|
Before the advancing Germans can reach the BUAs, the British shuffle rifle sections into the house and garden to set up a defense to thwart this move.
|British take the house and walled garden|
|British reach the building first|
|British defending walled garden|
|Firefight heats up|
|Germans assault a second time|
|Fighting in the building|
|Germans throw the defenders out|
|Building held by Germans|
For the British, the infiltration roll allows them to move one unit into an adjacent, non-occupied hex. They move the section to the top of the hill covered in deep snow. This stealthy move allows the British to take up position in the deep snow and bring fire down upon the German mountain troops in the valley below. With some good marksmanship, one surprised German squad is destroyed.
|Destruction of ski troop|
11:38 Placing the southern sector back into command, the Germans move forward against the walled garden. The sections in the adjacent house provide covering fire. German units, having been held in reserve, begin shifting to the center. The PzII is seen in the northern sector slowly crawling forward through the snow as the ski troops continue to glide toward the northernmost house.
The British unleash a wallop of firepower pinning several units and destroying a second mountain section as the Germans move up in the north and fall back from the open ground in the south.
|Cross fire hurricane|
|Fallback to open a fire lane|
|Germans advance in the center|
|Withering fire into walled garden|
Under cover of smoke, the German center advances into the deep snow to threaten both of the buildings situated on the northern half of the battlefield.
|Germans advance in deep snow under cover of smoke|
|Another one bites the dust|
|Situation at 11:56|
after the defenders are softened up by MG fire.
|Assault goes in|
|Success in taking one of the northern houses|
With the loss of that unit, the British defenders' Morale Level reaches zero. Each remaining unit must now test morale to either hold its ground or fall back. Three of the remaining defenders break and fallback. One unit retreats off table.
|British morale breaks!|
|Close but no cigar|
Well! This battle turned out much closer than I expected. Action ebbed and flowed throughout the contested hour-long battle. At times, I figured the Germans had little chance. Then, my sense was that the Germans had little chance. Finally, on the last turn, the Germans made great strides but fell one BUA short. Some of the firefights were extremely bloody. Assaulting is very chaotic and a high risk venture.
The British suffered heavy casualties but held on by the skin of their teeth to deny the Germans victory. With one more turn, the Germans could have sealed the victory but it was not to be. In hindsight, there are different tactics I would use for both. For the Germans, they waited too long to launch their attack up the center. Their MG was misplaced too. For the British, their initial deployment could be better thought out to provide more crossfire opportunities with improved lines of sight. I will give it another go and see if these adjustments make a difference to the outcome.
The victory conditions and game length seemed appropriate in offering both sides a fair chance at victory. I will replay and see if my initial impressions change. A few rules' questions came up during play as well as thoughts on tactics. I need time to ponder these questions before reaching a conclusion. For me, this was an interesting battle with more tension than expected. Much more interesting than I thought after first finding and then converting this ASL scenario.