wJur’s lovely write up on ASL SK #1 from his BGG profile: Jur Snijder (faded_Glory)
Scenario S5 from the ASLSK #1.
I have returned to ASL after a very long absence. Back in the 1970’s I played the original Squad Leader and its modules, and then made the switch to ASL. I ended up with most of the modules but, over time, real life interfered and I no longer had the time or opportunity to play the game. Eventually I sold the lot, far too cheaply in hindsight, and moved on to different things.
Recently I acquired the ASLSK1, out of a sense of curiosity and sentiment. I have now played a couple of scenarios and am glad to say that it all came back fairly easily, although I won’t claim to play without breaking a few rules here and there, nor do I pride myself on any particular tactical prowess. I just enjoy pushing around those familiar counters once again, and I’m happy that the game has been simplified a bit so as to not to overly confound my aging brain!
Right, enough of that, now on to the fight over Colleville!
In this scenario the Germans are occupying a village with just 6 squads, a couple of leaders and two machine guns. The Americans will attack with the goal of securing the town centre, in particular they have to remove all Good Order German MMC’s from all stone buildings within 3 hexes of yM5. The Americans have a strong Fire Group at start and get two groups of reinforcements during Turns 1 and 2, with a variable number of half-squads in addition to more leaders and MMG’s. The Germans get a small reinforcement contingent at Turn 2.
Looking at this from the German perspective, they are badly overpowered and lack the excellent leadership of the Americans. Their best asset is a heavy machine gun, their worst is a certain Col. Lorenz who with his 6+1 leadership ratings is best kept well away from the front. The name of the game then is an initial forward defense with the aim to slowly fall back on the victory buildings, and then hang in there until the clock runs out. Fortunately this scenario is quite short with only 5 turns.
The Americans on the other hand would wish for more time, they need to quickly penetrate the German defences and effectively throw them out of the village completely. Five turns is not a lot of time to do so, and they will need to make the most of their heavy firepower as much as their numerous smaller half-squads with which to try and overwhelm the Germans.
Germans set up first, Americans set up on or west of hex row T and move first.
Set-up and Turn 1
Positions at start
Since the Americans can boast of some heavy firepower, a stack of 3 squads plus an MMG fires on the 20 FP column, it seems wise not to expose the Germans too much. The initial American forces have to set up on the West side of the board with reinforcements arriving in the Northwest on Turn 1. The German setup is designed to deny the Americans a quick entry into the village by laying heavy fire lanes across the open ground around the village. It might be tempting to place a strong German fire group in the apex of the village, hex Q6, but that is a risky proposition in the face of potentially strong American Prep Fire. On the other hand, leaving that side of the village undefended would simply invite a very quick American assault and is to be avoided, so I have placed a token force of just one quad in that key hex.
The HMG goes to the South, from where it can deny an American run around that side of the village straight towards the Eastern victory buildings. In time it can easily be moved across the road into buildings L3 or K4 for a last stand later in the game. Several German squads occupy the buildings in L7 and L8 to try and blunt the attacks of the American Turn 1 and 2 reinforcements. Col. Lorenz stays well back and out of trouble – but as this battle unfolds he may have a role to play still!
The Americans set up a heavy fire group in the U6 building from where they will try to neutralise the Germans in Q6 whilst a smaller group will move up from T8 under cover of the building in R7. The Northern reinforcements will make a careful entry using Assault Movement into O10 and N10.
End of American Turn 1
At the end of the US Turn 1, the German squad in N6 has been broken by Advance Fire from the American Northern reinforcements whilst their position in Q6 has been enveloped by a quick attack from the West with some help from the North. During the German Turn 1 they slowly fall back, but the integrity of their line is still largely intact.
End of German Turn 1