#36: TuomoFest II

The Purist

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Congrats to Tom and Tuomo on a fine game.

I agree with Martin and Dave regarding the need for some sort of flanking attack, either north or south if not both. A frontal assault against the Russian defence was going to run into the main strength of the Russian units, especially the M3 Lee tanks and their front AF of 8 and TK#s of 11 and 13.

The road network on the flanks could (?) have been exploited to try and disperse the Russian armour and remove the picket line. In the north a pair of Pz IIIs could have attempted either SD or crew smoke to assist an infantry move in support and the tanks could still make it to roughly hex row Q-R along the forest road or turn right towards 5Q1. In the south two or even three Pz IIIs could have pounded down the board 42 road attempting SD or crew Smoke (perhaps J4) to cover the supporting infantry advance and still drive deep into the Russian left.

This would have still left three to four Pz IIIs to support the attack in the centre to pressure the main defence.

Just my 2 rubles as I haven't played this scenario (BoF16 version) but I think it's going on my 'to do' list.

Cheers.
 
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skarper

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It seems tough on the Germans. What is the balance and should the Germans get it?
 

asloser

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Just one quick coeerction - we were playing the recently released official version BoF 16 of this. Germans have full APCR capability and I think there is an additional Pz IIi
 

Tuomo

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It is absolutely tough on the Germans! Virtually Unwinnable! :)

Yah, we even played with the updated MMP version of this scenario, which seems to aid the Germans, and I still couldn't crack Tuomo's defense.
 

asloser

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It is absolutely tough on the Germans! Virtually Unwinnable! :)

Yah, we even played with the updated MMP version of this scenario, which seems to aid the Germans, and I still couldn't crack Tuomo's defense.
Did you win or Was it unbalanced? Favorite line of my long suffering brother when I whine after a loss to him. 🤭

Well then to be serious - the original FrF56 version is indeed pro Russian, it currently sits 25-12 for the Russian in ROAR. We played the republished BoF16 version, this game was played in early November when the new board 85 is wasn't available in VASL but as this is identical to FRFA we used this should not make a difference. Perhaps it was the board the threw our host off balance in their analysis?

Comparing the original version to the one we played the changes are that Russian tanks have been changed to the Official Lee(a) and Stuart III (a) counters found in Hakkaa Päälle! instead of US M3 medium or M3 light tanks. All special ammo has been taken away the original just forbade cannister - meaning that in the official version has no smoke ammo for the Russian 75mm Lee (a) guns. Otherwise Russian OB is otherwise unchanged.

Germans get one more 8-0 leader and one more PzIIIG. on top of that all of the German tanks have APCR in the MMP version, the original version had APCR only for the 50L guns. So, German should have more tools for the job in the official one-

So, my analysis of all of this is that the Germans had a chance in the original one (still 30% wins in ROAR), and the changes should be significant enough to help them to do better in the BoF16 version. As I mentioned in my babblings during the video I would be happy to try my luck as the German as well.

Whatever the version you play the key to the German play is the tank battle and they need all those 50L gun armed tanks to gain advantage. In our game Tom malfunctioned one of those early in the game and I killed another of them at the firs possible opportunity I got - IIRC there was 3 rolled on the moving target I was firing through smoke. So, in the end game Tom just did not have the tools to crack my position.

So I'd write this one off as a game where one side just lost couple of key assets to couple of unlucky rolls early on and that just digs a hole too deep to climb up from. I do not see this unwinnable as the German, but the German has to be on top form with his armor game here.

I like this one a lot.
 

asloser

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Congrats to Tom and Tuomo on a fine game.

I agree with Martin and Dave regarding the need for some sort of flanking attack, either north or south if not both. A frontal assault against the Russian defence was going to run into the main strength of the Russian units, especially the M3 Lee tanks and their front AF of 8 and TK#s of 11 and 12.

The road network on the flanks could (?) have been exploited to try and disperse the Russian armour and remove the picket line. In the north a pair of Pz IIIs could have attempted either SD or crew smoke to assist an infantry move in support and the tanks could still make it to roughly hex row Q-R along the forest road or turn right towards 5Q1. In the south two or even three Pz IIIs could have pounded down the board 42 road attempting SD or crew Smoke (perhaps J4) to cover the supporting infantry advance and still drive deep into the Russian left.

This would have still left three to four Pz IIIs to support the attack in the centre to pressure the main defence.

Just my 2 rubles as I haven't played this scenario but I think it's going on my 'to do' list.

Cheers.
I would love to see AAR from your game to make comparison.
 

JoeArthur

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It seems like a few of the other Friendly Fire scenarios - there is a tank battle and an infantry battle. Lose the tank battle and your infantry might as well head back to their start lines..............

Many thanks for another fun episode👍
 

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Well, considering Tuomo L. Lost 2 tanks (one recall and the other was a Drive up and got shot).
Frontal assault looks rough...Gotta get the INF there without having to cross all that MG fire from the tanks.
Bottom Flank 'Might" be a bit better than the top... or a feint on board 5 to draw more from the middle, then attack the middle full bore.

Tough nut.
 

Sparafucil3

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Well, considering Tuomo L. Lost 2 tanks (one recall and the other was a Drive up and got shot).
Frontal assault looks rough...Gotta get the INF there without having to cross all that MG fire from the tanks.
Bottom Flank 'Might" be a bit better than the top... or a feint on board 5 to draw more from the middle, then attack the middle full bore.

Tough nut.
A good fall back defense is hard to beat if the scenario has tight deadlines. I wonder how the outcome would have changed had Tom continued to push rather than re-assemble on turn 3. The delay in such a situation tends to favor the defender. The truth of the matter is this looks rough on Germans. While the map is three boards wide, the attack is constricted to a space of little more than a board wide. Even in that 13-hex'ish wide space, the attack is forced into corridors that can be easily defended. Kudos to Tuomo for a well played defense. I don't envy Tom attacking into that. Taking nothing from Tom, but Tuomo played this very well. -- jim
 
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Operation Case Tuomo begins ...
 

Tuomo

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I'm not sure if y'all have really looked at the armor flanking possibilities, here, so let me illustrate. Below is what the Russians can do if the Germans come in along the board 5 road.

15833

When the German hits H3, the Russian can fire with a TH DRM of +4 (moving, 1MP spent in LOS) and -2 Acq for both of the Guns on the Lee, for a net +2. That's an 8 to hit, and the 37LL has a TK of 11 while the 75 has a TK of 14, against the German's box-3 armor. Those are not good odds for the Germans.

And considering that the German has to negotiate the length of the board 5 woods-road, the Russian will certainly see the German commitment and will have time to prepare a more hostile welcoming committee at the road exit, with more tanks and possibly some ATR-toting infantry. Since the German armor comes in on turn 2, the earliest the above situation could happen is on turn 3.

That's why I didn't send more than one tank that way. And I was in fact surprised when Tuomo L didn't counter as above. You're gonna get shot up coming out the far end.

Then consider board 42. Here again, the Russians have some pretty good defensive terrain if they want it:
15832

Yes, the Germans have 8 tanks and the Russians only 6, but the multiple Guns on the Lees mean they have 9 Guns and get to shoot first from reasonable defensive terrain. Even against a German player like me who is comfortable with flanking and knows it's vitally important in many scenarios, I just couldn't find the room. Or rather, I eventually DID find a way to hit him from several angles late in the game, but even with the Russian numbers depleted by bad luck with MA Recalls, I still couldn't overcome the multiple Guns and good frontal armor on the Lees.

Note that the Russian armor comes in on turn 1 and so has two full Movement Phases to set up wherever they'd like before the German tanks come in on turn 2. This is a big part of my appreciation for Tuomo L's defense - that he didn't take that extra time and bungle it. If the Russian armor zooms across the board and sets up to stuff the Germans right as they come in, they'll discover there's just too much room on that side of the board. A good German commander will just flood the side where he can achieve a local advantage in numbers, and suddenly the depleted Russian armor will be racing the Germans back toward the VC area.

No, it's far smarter to just set up in the good defensive terrain offered on the right half of the board, packed in by the terrain so that the German armor can't come zooming in from the flanks, and trust that your advantage in Guns will carry the day. THAT'S the brilliance of what Tuomo L did - he saw where he had the advantage and he took it. And as a German player who understood the need to flank these guys, who is so very happy coming in from the sides to Kill With Geometry, I just could not crack that nut. Kudos to Mr. Lukkari.
 

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And yes, the German infantry is in scant position to help out the German armor. The Russians have an equal number of squads to start, along with an HMG and an 82mm MTR, and all of those tank MGs. The combined-arms thing here isn't really a thing. It's more like the German armor needing to win the armor battle in time and with enough strength to clean up the Russian infantry, while the German infantry go 28 hexes in 7 turns against an equally-strong Russian infantry force, who could dig foxholes throughout the VC area if they felt like it. Oh, and it's 1942, so no Riders for them either.

I sound bitter but I'm not. I think I'm just stumped :)
 

asloser

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We discussed the dilemma of upfront defence Vs fallback with Tom after the game.

I have been too upfront as a defender and this game I managed for once to do it right.

Still I have to highlight the fact that apart from the board 5 bounding fire miss by Stuart I hit a German tank when I needed to hit one. It could have been way tighter.
 

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No, it's far smarter to just set up in the good defensive terrain offered on the right half of the board, packed in by the terrain so that the German armor can't come zooming in from the flanks, and trust that your advantage in Guns will carry the day. THAT'S the brilliance of what Tuomo L did - he saw where he had the advantage and he took it. And as a German player who understood the need to flank these guys, who is so very happy coming in from the sides to Kill With Geometry, I just could not crack that nut. Kudos to Mr. Lukkari.
Just to be clear, I think it would have been interesting to see you push on turn 3, I don't think it would have changed the outcome that much. I think Tuomo L. played an excellent game. You played an pretty outstanding game too, but the combination of his good game and your loss of the 50L's pretty much put a nail in your coffin. As I watched turn 1 play out, I was looking out how you (Tom) were being funneled. Had you not lost the 50L's, it would have been more interesting to see how it turned out. Even so, you were going to struggle to clear those woods at the back.

I also concur with your assessment the German MUST win the Armor battle with enough time to allow their remaining armor to help clear the woods. It was this push I wanted to see on turn 3. I don't think it would have changed much, but at least you would have put yourself out of your misery early :)

Well played game by both of you IMO. The attacker needed to play perfectly, have some fortune, and your opponent needs to make a mistake or two to have an even chance in this. Unfortunately for you, you rolled like shit on TH's DR malfuctioning too many MA, Tuomo didn't make any mistakes that I saw. Even a perfectly played game wasn't going to be enough.

Having said all of that, I would love a crack at the Germans to see how I would fare. I don't think much would change though :) -- jim
 
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Tuomo

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Well. I don't think I did all that well; I'm experienced enough to know that the punch-up-the-middle is easily blocked, and I should have gotten some more armor down bd 42 earlier than I did. The two tanks that did go there spent turn 2 cleaning up an infantry mess that was created by me giving the Russian infantry too good a first fire shot because I was trying to do more than I should.

So it's funny how those little things come back to haunt you.

I'm still pissed that I bungled one of the first moves of the game, forgetting how I'd planned to move and giving Tuomo a shot that I didn't need to. So of course he rolls a 3 and breaks a squad. Ultimately no big deal but amazing to PLAN to move through hexes A, B, C, etc, but when the game is afoot, going A-B-D-SPLAT.
 

Sparafucil3

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Well. I don't think I did all that well; I'm experienced enough to know that the punch-up-the-middle is easily blocked, and I should have gotten some more armor down bd 42 earlier than I did. The two tanks that did go there spent turn 2 cleaning up an infantry mess that was created by me giving the Russian infantry too good a first fire shot because I was trying to do more than I should.

So it's funny how those little things come back to haunt you.

I'm still pissed that I bungled one of the first moves of the game, forgetting how I'd planned to move and giving Tuomo a shot that I didn't need to. So of course he rolls a 3 and breaks a squad. Ultimately no big deal but amazing to PLAN to move through hexes A, B, C, etc, but when the game is afoot, going A-B-D-SPLAT.
I think you did well enough given the options you had. It's not like you could attack across the width of the board and Tuomo didn't give you much of anything else. You were funneled by both the terrain and Tuomo's defense. IMO, you did well enough. Sometimes you're the bug and sometimes you're the the windshield. -- jim
 

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I'm not sure if y'all have really looked at the armor flanking possibilities, here, so let me illustrate. Below is what the Russians can do if the Germans come in along the board 5 road.

View attachment 15833

When the German hits H3, the Russian can fire with a TH DRM of +4 (moving, 1MP spent in LOS) and -2 Acq for both of the Guns on the Lee, for a net +2. That's an 8 to hit, and the 37LL has a TK of 11 while the 75 has a TK of 14, against the German's box-3 armor. Those are not good odds for the Germans.

And considering that the German has to negotiate the length of the board 5 woods-road, the Russian will certainly see the German commitment and will have time to prepare a more hostile welcoming committee at the road exit, with more tanks and possibly some ATR-toting infantry. Since the German armor comes in on turn 2, the earliest the above situation could happen is on turn 3.

That's why I didn't send more than one tank that way. And I was in fact surprised when Tuomo L didn't counter as above. You're gonna get shot up coming out the far end.

Then consider board 42. Here again, the Russians have some pretty good defensive terrain if they want it:
View attachment 15832

Yes, the Germans have 8 tanks and the Russians only 6, but the multiple Guns on the Lees mean they have 9 Guns and get to shoot first from reasonable defensive terrain. Even against a German player like me who is comfortable with flanking and knows it's vitally important in many scenarios, I just couldn't find the room. Or rather, I eventually DID find a way to hit him from several angles late in the game, but even with the Russian numbers depleted by bad luck with MA Recalls, I still couldn't overcome the multiple Guns and good frontal armor on the Lees.

Note that the Russian armor comes in on turn 1 and so has two full Movement Phases to set up wherever they'd like before the German tanks come in on turn 2. This is a big part of my appreciation for Tuomo L's defense - that he didn't take that extra time and bungle it. If the Russian armor zooms across the board and sets up to stuff the Germans right as they come in, they'll discover there's just too much room on that side of the board. A good German commander will just flood the side where he can achieve a local advantage in numbers, and suddenly the depleted Russian armor will be racing the Germans back toward the VC area.

No, it's far smarter to just set up in the good defensive terrain offered on the right half of the board, packed in by the terrain so that the German armor can't come zooming in from the flanks, and trust that your advantage in Guns will carry the day. THAT'S the brilliance of what Tuomo L did - he saw where he had the advantage and he took it. And as a German player who understood the need to flank these guys, who is so very happy coming in from the sides to Kill With Geometry, I just could not crack that nut. Kudos to Mr. Lukkari.
So, what you are saying is that a feint to either/both sides will tie up his Lee's and at least one Stuart, relieving the MG pressure in the middle for some infantry to get through.
 
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