Thursday, 27 November 2014

WW2 Desert Game - February 1941 Beda Fomm

A 28mm wargame scenario and AAR


Italian Infantry wait in cover to attack
Last weekend we broke out the Desert stuff for a go at a historical scenario, we've been itching to get a few Germans on the table but lack of time meant I had a limited period to organise the game so I fell back on the old favourites. I was looking for something a bit different and found this idea of an Italian attack quite interesting.

Historical Background

The Battle of Beda Fomm happened in February 1941, the 10th Italian Army was in danger of being encircled, it was retreating towards Agedabia along the Balbia Road. The British had created an adhoc motorised group, Combe Force to block the Italians.

The road passes through a series of hills known as Rus Ben Hagen and it was here that Combe Force blocked the Italians.

Table layout, still haven't got the hang of a map drawing app yet.
Italian Forces

1 Company of M13/40 tanks (1HQ tank plus 4 other tanks)
1 Company of CV35 Tankettes (1 with 20mm AT)
2 Companies of Italian Infantry (each with 2HQ figs and attached Light Mortar, 2 Rifle units with 11 figs, and 2 LMG units with 9 figs and 2LMG)
1 Re enforced assault company (2 x HQ figures and attached Light Mortar, 1 unit of 12 Bersaglieri inc 1 LMG and 3 units of Giovanni Facisti each with an LMG)
Support Group with 2 Breda HMG, 1 20mm AT Rifle, 1 x 47mm AT Gun and a Heavy Mortar.

Italian Forces
British Forces

1 Company of 3 x A10 Cruiser Tanks
1 Mixed Tank Company with 1 Valentine and 1 Crusader
1 Recon Company with a MKVI Lt Tank and 1 Rolls Royce AC
2 Infantry Companies ( each with a 3 Fig HQ unit with attached Lt Mortar and Boyes AT, and 3 10 fig units each with an LMG)
Support Group of 1 HMG and 1 Lt Mortar
Random Air Support of 1 ground attack plane (arrives on draw of Allied Aircraft card followed by a roll of 9 or 10 on a d10)

NB: Please note that the tanks used in this battle by the Brits where in fact A13s, nobody makes these in 28m so thats why we dont have them, Warlord hold the masters from another company but wont release them. There should also be 2pdr portees again apart from expensive US imports there arent any in the UK.


Game Set Up

All British Forces start on table and can set up anywhere on or behind the line of hills in the middle of the table.

Italians start off table and enter on the turn of their activation card.

Rules are unpublished house rules, developed from our SCW rules, a mix of Disposable Heroes, Toofatlardies and warped imagination.

The Italians are in a do or die situation, they have no other option but breakout and this should be reflected in the rules you use. We allowed Italian units to ignore morale effects from other units.

AAR



A very enjoyable game, we opted to not use the Poker style flop on the activation phase and it worked much better for the larger scale game. We will keep it in for club nights as it does add another dimension to the game but slows it down as well when there are large numbers involved.

Things didn't start too well when the Italians lost a unit of infantry on the first turn who had decided to bimble along in the open in range of the mgs of 3 A10s, I didn't think he would see them was the excuse !

The pressure was on for the Italians to advance but the initial set back dented the confidence of the troops on the Italian left flank, the standard Infantry had set up here with the lovely but frankly useless CV35s. The other flank had the better troops and pushed on towards the hill in their front.

A number of Italian shells hit and bounced off these two with no effect.
Nice model, absolutely useless though didnt hit a thing all game

On the left flank the Italians lost all three CV35s in very short order, one brewing up rather embarrassingly after a Lt Mortar shell hit it, on the other flank it was a much closer run thing.

Italian Infantry taking cover or hiding as it is otherwise known

It was a very close run thing the Italians lost 3 of their 5 tanks but managed to get rid of the Infantry holding the hill on that side of the table, sadly they didn't have enough troops left to push home the advantage and the Italians had to settle for a very honourable defeat.

Take Cover !

Giovanni Facisti reach the foot of the hill but that was as far as they got
A cracking game which was done in a day, I had planned it for two. Next up will be the next instalment of the X Wing saga, hope you enjoyed.