Friday 5 September 2014

BKC Breakout Scenario

It's always great to renew old friendships. I was recently contacted by a gaming buddy I had only previously met during the weekend of MadFest 2012. Adam had worked out that my new address was reasonably close to his, and was kind enough to contact me to renew our acquaintanceship. So we decided to have a go at some Blitzkrieg Commander chez moi. I decided to try the Breakout scenario as it is a little out of the ordinary, with a defending force on the centre third of the table being squeezed between a break-out force on one side trying to escape to the far table edge, and a break-in force on the other trying to help their comrades. The setting of course would be Poland 1939.

This is a tricky scenario for the defender to win, particularly with a defending force like the Poles which tends to lack motorised units and mobile armour. But we gave it a go. Forces involved were:

German Forces  Regimental CO CV9

Artillery Battalion FAO CV8
3 105mm artillery units, 6 assets

HS-123 Staffel FAC CV7
1 HS-123 unit, 2 assets

Breakout Force:
Panzer Bn HQ CV8
4 PzI, 2 PzII, 1 PzIII, 1 PzIV

Recce Bn HQ CV8
1 Sdkfz221 (recce), 1 Sdkfz222, 1 Sdkfz231, 3 m/c infantry units, 1 mg unit (truck), 1 75mm IG (truck)

Break-in Force:
Panzer Bn HQ CV8
2 PzI, 4 PzII, 1 PzIII, 1 PzIV

Motorcycle Bn HQ CV8
6 m/c infantry units, 2 m/c mg units, 1 mortar unit (truck), 1 37mm ATG unit (truck)

33 units, BP = 16       (All infantry units have ATR upgrade)

Polish Forces  Regimental CO CV8 

Artillery battalion FAO CV6
3 75mm artillery units

Trenches for 8 units, gun pits for 2 units

Tank Company HQ CV8
2 7tp (37mm), 1 7tp (mg)

Infantry Battalion x 2 HQ CV7  (one battalion has 1 75mm artillery support unit+truck attached)
6 infantry units
2 mg unit
1 mortar unit (truck)
1 37mm ATG (truck)

24 units, BP = 12        (All infantry units have ATR upgrade)

The Battle

This shows the table set-up. The white dice indicate the centre third -
I sent this photo to Adam (Germans) so he could plan his scheduled fire.
Now there's interesting - Adam brought over some Litko smoke screen markers which I was very taken with.
Here the game gets underway with some smoke being fired by the Germans.
The Polish flank on the far side from the hill was the weak point in their defence, which Adam quickly spotted.
This is the now famous 'charge of the motorcycles' which was to successfully unhinge this flank. Note suppressed Polish command unit, and that 2 of the dug-in Polish units are about to be assaulted in their rear.
Oh dear - all those Polish units appear to have been replaced by German ones!
A wide open escape route - German support fire units on hill at right, breakout force gathering itself at left.
Overview towards game end. Polish tanks in the centre (on the road) are being ground down.
Some close-ups. These are the leading armoured car units of the breakout force.
Light tanks of the breakout force lurk in cover, awaiting their opportunity.
The defending Polish infantry battalion in the centre, between hill and village, was not really tested.

This was a very different game from my last BKC outing at the Oxford Wargames Society. It was much more the kind of gaming I am used to - working carefully through each move to make sure the rules were used correctly. As a result I re-learned a lot about the detail of how BKC works. I was particularly distressed to find that units close assaulting in transport dismount automatically from their vehicles (in this case motorcycles), making an attack by motorcycle infantry just that bit more likely to succeed. Blast!

A very absorbing game, and great to find that suddenly I have a new opponent to enjoy wargaming with. Thanks for getting in touch Adam!


Steve J. said...

I've found this scenario to be a tricky one for sure. I've played it a couple of times and the defender has been soundly beaten each time. I may give it another solo run out as I'm long overdue a BKC game.

Great to see the Poles and Germans on the table again and that you've got a new gaming chum close by. The MC platoon looked fun and from reading 'Grenadiers' by 'Panzer' Meyer, they certainly have lived up to his accounts of them in action.

Adam J said...

Great game. Thank you Keith!

Al said...

Nice kit