Saturday, 13 August 2016

University City Madrid 1936 - AAR

Guardia Civil cautiously advance towards the University
Back in April we played a large Spanish Civil War game recreating the attack on University City during the initial Nationalist drive on Madrid, I meticulously spent time preparing and publishing a Scenario Post for the game detailing Army Lists, rules, table plans etc etc, today 4 months later I realised that I had forgotten to put a AAR report up !

Early in the game Anarchists defending the Palace de la Moncloa 
Thankfully I still have the photos of the game however my "detailed" notes of the action have been recycled so my apologies to the players who took part for any errors. I recommend you read the original post for the game which you can find HERE.

A stray Nationalist round falls uncomfortably close to a Pz1
The game is designed for 6 players, there are three Commanders on each side, but they each have separate objectives, some of which conflict with the others on their "team", this led to an interesting and fun game. A number of times you could see people looking at fellow gamers with that "What the bloody he'll are you doing" look, "Objectives dear boy, Objectives", the game works best if your opponents and Allies have no idea what you're up to.

Republican Militia rush to support the front line 
Whilst Carlist Troops form a Conga
The battle broke down into three distinct sectors with the vast majority of fighting happening, player to player across the table. Having played the full game I think it could work just as well as three separate scenarios.

As shown in the photos above the Carlist Forces took on the Anarchist troops on the bottom of the table in the open ground around the Palace in front of the School of Philosophy, led by an Armoured Car and a T26 the Red hatted soldiers suffered from traffic jam syndrome getting over the bridge. The Republicans had set up a HMG in the School and no one was keen to wander about in the open.

Legion Commanders in conference
Legion Advance !

In the centre the Legion advanced to the river line to engage a Company of Asaltos who had set up in the School of Architecture, the firefight was fierce but the Asaltos were isolated and soon outnumbered enabling the Nationalist troops to push the Republicans out enabling a early general advance in the centre. There was a couple of Republican Militia companies in the Students Residences but the Legion where at long range, ammunition was low and their accuracy was frankly useless.

T26 and Brigadista take on the Moroccan Regulares 

At the far side of the table the International Brigade had decided to defend deeper effectively abandoning La Bombilla and setting up a strong defence in the Park, it turned into an almighty firefight with the Moroccan Troops who made the best advantage of the cover, however the Brigadista where supported by a T26 which you WW2 players may scoff at, in the Spanish Civil War it's the equivalent of a Tiger Tank.

A general view of the game about half way through, Camera Crew just visible on the roof of the School of Medicine.
As the game progressed the extra finances of the Nationalists started to pay off and they where able to get more reinforcements quicker. I like this part of the game as the choices you make alter the course of the game, do I buy a shiny new tank, or an AT Gun, maybe a MG to cause havoc, or do I need some Artillery to take out the opponents Heavy Weapons, oh but what about some more Foot troops or some Dynamitaroes, choices choices.

Legion move forward under Mortar fire.
A hastily erected Barracade provides extra cover
The Carlist attack stalled as the Anarchists attacked them from the flank through the large woods towards their Bridge forcing the Nationalists to form an defensive line to fend off the attack.


Anarchists move in on the Carlist flank
Whilst in the centre the Legion machine like The Terminator moved from building to building taking out all opposition, the Asaltos Companies were isolated from each other and the lack of finance prevented timely purchase of reinforcements.

The unstoppable Legion
The Moroccan Troops stay safe out of the woods
So the game drew to a close with a victory for the Nationalists although the Moroccan attack had stalled the Brigadista where badly shot up and severely lacking in ammunition.

Anarchists defending.
The Carlists managed to see off the Anarchist attack at some cost in men but they had troops to spare and that left only a couple of companies of Anarchists in front of them to defend the remaining buildings again with little ammunition.

A Carlist MG suppressing Anarchists
In the centre the Legion reached the last line of buildings and the game was over.

Legion Command and the Film Crew look on as Legionnaires capture the School of Medicine 

The saddest / most amusing depending on your viewpoint, thing, occurred with these chaps shown above. One of the Anarchist command teams set off from by the Chapel and had managed to travel over 8ft of game table in an attempt to plant their Anarchist Flag in a Communist held building. They reached the steps to the front door when they where taken out by a random Artillery round, we all agreed they would get their victory points anyway for their efforts. 

The Legion won the objective battle and had got a couple of their escapades filmed, I failed on most of my objectives with my beloved Carlists, I was concentrating on running the game and forgot to go for mission points. Sadly my notes have disappeared but I do remember it was a really good fun game and that for me is what counts !