Sunday, October 15, 2017

Our Saturday Game - ASL Scenario AP122 Mechanized Sacrifice

For our Saturday game, Dan Best and I selected another of the new scenarios from the Action Pack 13. Our selection would be AP122 Mechanized Sacrifice (designed by Bill Sisler) . We don't often play armor only scenarios, so it was a nice change of pace. And this one involves a lot of early war armor, which often means a lot of wrecks before the game ends!

We rolled for sides and Dan would be the Russians and I would have the Germans. My force would be elements of the 14th Panzer Division. I would have 2 x MKII's, an SPW 250 with 37L, and SPW 250 with LMG, and the ubiquitous PSW 222 Armored Car. A 2-47 with an ATR and 8-0 for leadership would round out my initial entry force.  On Turn 3 I would get 4 x 50 MKIII's. 

My Germans would enter second after Dan's Russians entered the game first.

Dan's Russians would be elements of the 19th Tank Division, 22nd Mechanized Corps. Dan's entire force would enter at game start. He would have 8 x T-26's, 2 BA-6's and 2 x BA-20 armored cars. 12 x 45L Guns would be a tough force to contend with. 

Dan's forces would only have the half their movement on Turn 1. This would severely handicap the T-26's as they entered the map.

The victory conditions were simple, the Russians would win immediately by exiting 5 or more AFV's. And this number would drop by 1 for every 2 German AFV's knocked out.

 Despite having numerical superiority in this scenario, Dan's forces had to contend with some difficult terrain, which ultimately would funnel them into the sights of waiting German guns.

 The armored cars jumped out in front as the T-26's trundled along behind. Platoon movement would also add to Dan's logistic woes as he moved his force towards the exit.

 I had a limited force to begin the scenario and knew I had to place them in optimal positions or risk having Dan's forces blow right by them.

 In the north I sent a MKII and the SPW 37L to cover the hill, while my PSW 222 Armored Car took a hull down position in the center. On the south, I placed a MKII and the other SPW 250 on the elevated road to control both the center and south. And lastly, my 2-4-7 and ATR took up position in the house on the south to act as last line of defense.

 Dan's armored cars drew first blood and succeeded in stunning my MG SPW. It would not contribute the rest of the scenario.

 Dan's armored cars would be the focus of my primary defensive fire. My 20L's would prove to be just strong enough to deal with these.

 Turn 2 - Dan's forces made a strong move towards the center.

With my forces in position, I simply had to wait and watch to see what Dan's Russians would do. He had 4 of T-26's moving on the hill and two armored cars headed south. Dan was definitely going to try and stretch my defenses along the entire front.

In the center things really heated up. Dan's BA-20's drove up onto the elevated road and both were destroyed. Then in an amazing sequence of shots, my PSW 222 went on a rate tear and would destroy two more Armored Cars and one T-26. Dan managed to take out my SPW with the 37L, but my PSW 222's performance would be the best of the game.

 Black circles indicate the AFV's lost in Turn 2.

Turn 3, my reinforcements arrived. I planned to send two of the MKIII's south and two to the north. With the Russians caught in the middle, I felt confident that my 4 x MKIII's would secure the defense and prevent any Russian AFV's from exiting the board.

 Dan's Russians returned fire on my units in the center, but couldn't get the kills needed. My PSW 222 would gain a 4th kill and my MKII on the elevated road would contribute another kill.

 My MKIII's quickly moved into position. 

 With a cry of "Hold my Beer and watch this!!!" Dan launched his boys at me full tilt. He was looking to blow past my line with as many of his AFV's as possible.

 Dan's rush on my southern line would be stopped cold.

 In the center, only one Russian T-26 with a MALF'd MA would make it through the gauntlet of German fire. It would fall victim to one of my Panzer MKIII's that was covering that part of the battlefield in the next turn.

 In the north, it looked like Dan's forces might succeed in exiting the board. I quickly sent my forces to intercept.

 Dan and I battled it out on the hill. In the far north, my Panzers were registering multiple hits on the T-26's, but I couldn't roll a kill as my shots bounced again and again.

 Caught in the crossfire, Dan's lead T-26 in the north was finally shocked. At this point in the game, Dan had less than 5 AFV's left to try and exit. As a result, the Russians couldn't meet the victory requirements.

As we wrapped up Turn 5, Dan gave the concession. The Russians were down to just three AFV's and all of them were confronting German Panzers from the front and rear.

In the post-game review, Dan and I both liked this scenario, but also agreed that the Russians have a tough time due to terrain constraints, which definitely allowed the Germans to make the most of their smaller force. Dan's Russians also spent valuable time trading shots with the German Panzers, which we agreed in hindsight slowed down the Russian assault. Most of the hits sustained on the Russian tanks occurred after they had stopped to trade fire.  But again we both agreed it was a great scenario.

My thanks as always to Dan for another awesome Saturday night of ASL.

Saturday night Cardboard via SKYPE ASL!!!

See you next Saturday as we clash once more in AP131 Crickets in Spring!

Saturday, October 14, 2017

500th POST and 50th Grumble Jones Scenario-All on Friday the 13th!!!

It's finally time for the third installment of the Backstory for GJ050 - The Heroes of Hollis or how Jeff and Dave saved ASL for future generations.

We pick up the story after The Büffel received his orders to destroy the Hollis Center and its instructors.

Under cover of darkness, The Büffel  heads to the railroad tracks near the Hollis center and sets the demolition charges which will derail the train and ensure the deaths of all the German POW's onboard. They were to become the undead army needed to destroy the Hollis Center.

After setting the charges,  The Büffel  returns to the Hollis Center to prepare for the radio transmission.

Near midnight on Halloween night...a POW train hurtles down the track headed to POW camps in Arkansas and Oklahoma. But its destination would be forever altered...

A mighty explosion would destroy the train and its unsuspecting occupants.

                                  A hellish fate awaited them.

Back at the Hollis Center....The Büffel begins transmitting the ancient Egyptian radio frequency.

As the signal reaches the train wreck...the recently living once again rise up and head for the source of the signal filled with an undying rage.

       But something unexpected had also occurred and it would alter the German plans irretrievably...

Flash forward to suburban Chicago as two ASL players leave Chicago on their way to the March Madness ASL Tournament at the Hollis Center in Kansas City. Jeff and Dave are on the road...after many hours, they begin the drive into the little valley of Hollis. Dave is driving as Jeff changes the radio station. As he hits a certain frequency...a bright light flashes and Jeff and Dave find themselves transported to Halloween night 1944.

"What's happening...???"

Jeff and Dave are unsure of what has happened...but suddenly they see zombies coming out of the woods and decide they must act quickly to warn the inhabitants of Hollis of the impending danger!!!

Dave and Jeff sound the alarm and the Heroes of Hollis rush to defend the center and repel the zombie horde...and to find the source of the strange humming sound coming from one of the buildings.

A furious battle ensues, but ultimately, the Heroes of Hollis are able to hold off the zombies and locate the radio transmitting it dark signal.

But before they can disable the radio one of their number reveals himself to be a German agent.

The Büffel reveals himself in a desperate attempt to stop the Heroes of Hollis...but he is brought down and eliminated.

With The Büffel gone, the Heroes of Hollis successfully turn of the radio.

And in an instant the zombies collapse and Jeff and Dave vanish. The Hollis center had been saved.

As soon as the radio was disabled...Dave and Jeff found themselves once more in 2018 and sitting in front of the lodge at Hollis. They looked at one another and wondered what had just happened. Both agreed that it must have been something they drank. So they grabbed their kit and plunged into a weekend of ASL!!!

Following the unsuccessful attack on Hollis, General Patton himself directed that the program be moved to a safer location in Maryland. The Advanced Squad Leadership Program was too valuable to risk every again.

Here now is the scenario GJ050 - The Heroes of Hollis. My thanks to the Kansas City ASL Group and to the 2 Half-Squads for agreeing to be part of this year's annual Halloween Scenario. May it bring some fun to your gaming day.

As always these monthly "Basement Quality" Scenarios are offered for fun only and as a thank you to the readers of this blog.
Remember to open pictures in a new window in order to maximize the size. 
And as always, the PDF for this scenario can be downloaded from The ASL Scenario Archive 
(just search on Grumble Jones).

Now you may think the story of the Heroes of Hollis ended that Halloween night...but you'd be wrong....

The events surrounding the Hollis Center were cause for grave concern at the highest levels of the US Military. Rumors of dead German POW's roaming the Kansas countryside were spreading and had to be squashed immediately. The Battle of the Bulge had begun and anything adding to fear on the Home Front was unacceptable.

The War Department sent in Military Intelligence to clean the site and remove all traces that a military installation had ever been there. 

All other activities undertaken were to be strictly top secret and controlled from a new super secret site...known as Area 51...

And there the story of the Hollis Center was to end...

or did it...

Happy Halloween to the readers of this Blog!