HazMo10 Fresh Grist

Houlie

CEO of HoulieDice (TM)
Joined
Nov 15, 2003
Messages
3,133
Reaction score
1,301
Location
Minnesota, USA
Country
llUnited States
Finished up Hazmo10 Fresh Grist. My opponent Curtis Brooks and I agreed it was one of the best scenarios we have recently played.

I had the defending Chinese versus Curtis’s Japanese. VC was Japanese need >=6 of 7 multi-hex buildings. OBs had nice variety and flavor. I won’t spend time on OBs, SSR specifics as this scenario has been written about in other posts.

I set up with the idea that my left or right would eventually withdraw and block as needed to set up the end game on the opposite side. Curtis sent roughly equal forces to each side.

Setup (All Chinese concealed; Guns/AFV HIP)
22280

The first four full turns were all positioning and softening up the D for the Japanese. The Chinese focused on skulking and staying concealed. The defenders withstood the Japanese fire pretty well. However, I had a critical 337 break on my left flank opened the door to my backfield. Casualties would start for the Chinese from turn 4 onward…

Early mid-game (through turn 4)
22281

I had started to lose a couple squads per turn from turn 4 onward. Despite this, the Chinese held together okay and created defensive blocking positions. Even with my losses and a fractured left backfield on the left, I felt good as the battle continued to develop. For the defender, it was all about delaying the Japanese and Curtis even remarked he may not have enough time. However, Curtis had a very good Japanese turn 6 and was positioned well. My losses continued to mount, but Japanese casualties were only 4 CVP(!). The Chinese had hoped for more damage – at least mutual CC destruction. Unfortunately, consistently blowing my ambush rolls meant steady CC losses.

Late Mid-game (through Japanese turn 6)

22282

1.5 turns to go! We are in the home stretch and things are very interesting! Chinese need to hold to TWO VC buildings. They held three. The F5 building had the 75*ART and a 337/LMG, but would likely fall. The O7 building still held by the HIP AFV and 2x247/9-2 in hex O7. Building M7 would probably hold as it was the furthest away and blocked well. This meant building/hex O7 was the party place for end game action.

Here's where I have to say this scenario shines. The ensuing end game was the most challenging and rewarding I have played in quite some time. I thought about it often as I awaited our VASL time to finish it. I have not puzzled through an end game to such a degree in recent memory. It ended up so intricate and intertwined that it required thoughtful play from both of us to architect attack and defense approaches.

We reconvened on VASL in the Chinese bottom-of-turn 6. The Chinese received one SSR-provided 337/LMG/8-1. Better late than never, right? They also lucked out when the Japanese FB air support failed its sighting TC – a huge relief.

Prep fire was limited with the 75* IFed and striping a squad. Key moves were a 247 assault moving upstairs in O7 and some skulking. I advanced troops back in to bolster O7 with a concealed 337/LMG, an unconcealed 247/9-2 and, of course the still-HIP AFV. Its sole job was to go into motion as soon as the Japanese tanks entered the hex which I figured would happen. My turn 6 ended, I braced for the last Japanese move.

Buckle up! The Chinese survived prep fire. As expected, the F5 building defenders were bathed in banzai love and ultimately eliminated or captured. They had done their job diverting the attacker’s strength and blocking movement. One Japanese tank platoon-moved into O7 and bogged triggering a guaranteed motion attempt for the defending AFV. A gaggle of troops advanced into O7 for CC. The Chinese had a net -2 ambush DRM and won it. Both huge AND lucky. I decided to withdraw all infantry upstairs leaving the motion tank to fend for itself. The tank survived CC and the infantry fire would be locked in the next player turn.

In the upcoming final Chinese turn the defenders were well positioned: Locked fire in O7 ground level; 2xDare Death 247s were set to go berserk and lock more fire; a 9-2/247/concealed 337 in level 1. In light of the situation, the Japanese conceded to banzai another day.

End game
22283

Outstanding, highly recommended scenario that is clearly winnable for either side (10-11 on ROAR). Curtis played another outstanding game, carefully avoiding early loses (to avoid creating Chinese reinforcements) and framing up his end game assault. At first glance, I suspect the 7-turn game length may feel comfortable for the attacker considering the short distance to the action. However, it can be deceiving as there is a lot to do. A perpetual risk-reward analysis needs to be made for the Japanese on weighing losses versus speed.

For the Chinese, defending everything is the first step to defeat. Sensing which side of the board to Alamo is critical and a measured withdrawal is imperative. Creating a wall of bodies (GO or broken) wherever possible can help stymie the attack and disrupting their timetable. Keeping concealment unless compelling attacks present themselves was also helpful. Keeping guns/AFV hidden as long as possible seemed to help keep the attacker guessing.

An excellent scenario well worth a play. A huge thank you to Curtis for taking me to the edge AGAIN. An outstanding player and an even more outstanding person.
 
Last edited:

commissar1969

Member
Joined
Oct 17, 2011
Messages
510
Reaction score
177
Location
Martin, TN
Country
llUnited States
Great narrative! This AAR further reinforces my conviction that the Japanese need to do exactly what Curtis did: attack slowly and methodically. A first-turn Banzai - in my experience - is a guaranteed loss. Curtis understood that from the beginning! :)
 
Top