Thursday, 3 January 2013

The Madrid Road (part 3)

So, after the refreshment break the Nationalists had reorganised for the push on the second village. Eschewing the attractions of pushing directly up the main road (the historical approach of the Legion) they deployed mostly on the right, taking advantage of the olive grove to mask their approach.

Perceiving the danger the Republicans responded by sending their armoured squadron over to hold them off. Due to the nature of the rest of the defence force, (militia who prefer fighting in towns) it alas went on its own, - something that was to prove a fatal error.

The Nationalists worked their way carefully forward. Chris had cunningly chosen the role of providing fire support to the attack, and deployed his Carlists in a firing line on the edge of the olive grove. Actually under the rules formations make no difference to fire effectiveness (a bit like PBI) but it is good to see the players making an effort. I tried making formations relevant in an earlier version, but they just distracted from the flow of the game.

With the village mostly occupied with the firing to the front the cavalry sneaked round to the rear and dismounted. They were met with a hail of fire which, photograph to the contrary, proved to be mostly ineffective.

The Legion and their accompanying tabors now took on the might of the Republican armoured fist. Amidst much debate about the efectiveness of the armour on a Renault FT-17 (it is as thick as on a Pz 1) the Nationalists closed to assault and finally did for it with a mixture of hand grenades and petrol bombs.This opened up the flank of the village and allowed Nationalist units to approach in relative safety up the sunken road, should they wish to do so.

Bouyed by the success of their colleagues and contemptuous of the effectivenss of Republican small arms fire the cavalry rode round the back of the village and dismounted to attack the village. The communists opened fire and gave them something to think about.

Unfortunately any success here was a side show compared to what was happening elsewhere.The Carlists kept up a sustained fire on the front of the village whilst the Guardia Civile once more did the business in the close combat. They were also aided once again by the Legion bravely drawing fire in the open.

The Guardia cut a swathe through the village and the Republicans found it hard to resist. The game ended with a small pocket isolated in the church, where they eventually died to a man. Or all ran away, depending on whose version of the history you read.

All in all a very enjoyable afternoon's gaming. Everyone professed themselves to be satisfied, and I took away a few amendments for the rules, which I will post up in the near future.

Once more Spain has provided an enjoyable location for a game and we will be back for more as the year unfolds. Two reasons for this, - I've still got some units that haven't made it on to the table and also the Chinese project has slowed slightly. It should pick up shortly now as I have a number of historical memoirs downloaded onto the Kindle and I have also submitted my figure orders to put together the forces for the 1860 campaign.

Here's to a lot of enjoyable gmaing in 2013.

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