Well finally started S26 tonight. Finished 1-1/2 turns. I drew the Soviets and am certainly looking at a rough battle against a powerful German force.
My opponent chose the King Tiger Group to enter first. They rumbled on from the west edge. My Soviets were concentrated in the stone buildings of the village. My 57LL was placed in the clump of woods north of the village with a view to the east edge.
The Germans got lucky with a critical hit on one of my 4-4-7's with a MKIV. They were KIA'd along with my Demo Charge. Next the King Tigers climbed up one of the hills on the west side of the map and faced north.
I obliged the Tigers and moved all three of my JSII's about 14 hexes away on an opposing hill. Defensive fire went ok, with no hits from the Tigers. My 4 T-34/85's moved in column towards the village on the eastern side road of board U.
Then came Turn 2 for the Germans. In a blink of an eye two JSII's were in flames and one of my T-34/76's in the village was shocked. YIKES!!!!
The second German group then entered along the east edge. The 3 Panthers entered cautiously and stayed along the back edge of the board. My T-34/85's had remained in motion...so I didn't really believe I had any chance of hitting a moving tank. I did however fire at one of the German infantry stacks moving in the open. Snake eyes...not a critical hit, but a hit nonetheless and managed to DM and ELR one squad. So nothing earth shattering...but at least I had done something in the past 2 hours.
We'll pick it up again next Wednesday as the Soviet phase of Turn 2 starts. We shall see what the Hammer & Sickle boys can do!!!!