Monday, 11 March 2013

A rare British Advance in East Africa

  For the game we decided on a defensive game where the Germans were dug in and the British attacking. The main reason for this layout was from an argument that the British always lose and Indian troops always get shot and run away. So I decided to play on the British team and let the usual (losing) British team take the Germans in a well defended dug in position. And so the battle lines were drawn. A few historical notes were changed, with the addition of British tanks freshly arrived from palastine and some German heavy guns and an extra marine and german Battalion to even the odds. Basically to see how well the tanks worked.

The defenders had 3 battalions of Askari, 2 battalions of German infantry and a battalion of marines, each with 2 HMG per battalion and supported by 4 Koenigsberg guns and a battery of heavy guns and a battery of Field Guns. 

The British had 2 Imperial battalions, 3 Indian battalions, 2 Askari battalions and 1 south African battalions, each with 1 machine gun. Supported by 3 Batteries of howitzers, 1 battery of field guns and 6 tanks.

The battle started off with myself arresting General Smuts and placing blind chickens as commanders, there by doubling the British generals competence. Joking aside the British deployed in a 3 battalion deep line that was designed to pivot onto the German left defences, tanks in front as shell magnets.

British troops advanced under shellfire, losing the tanks and the south Africans got a beating, the imperial troops leading the Indians took most of the flank fire, the Indian troops moved through the depleted British and began clearing the wire as British gunners pounded the German trenches, then the whippets took the trench line allowing Indian troops to take the German defences. All that tanks were lost but We held the German forward trenches.

With the left hand defences in Indian hands the British Askari swept the surprised German Askari from the gun line and the German guns to the left fell silent. The German troops now moved into the village behind the German defences and formed a fire line but to little effect, after 2 turns of shooting at each other the British guns drew up and thinned the German line. The Germans now realising that the battle was over with the main hill under British control decided to bug out, the marines formed a screen allowing the safe escape of 1 Askari battalion and a badly mauled German battalion and their heavy guns. The victor for the British!

With celebrating in camp that night the British pattered themselves on the back and shared a pink gin. We had proved that the British can win and that in fact it was the Indian troops that won the day, taking the trenches and well supporting the Askari. Among other things the Germans discovered that in east Africa sitting on one's behind isn't the best state of play. The Germans best feature is movement, the British weight of numbers and lots of big guns, and despite a few alterations such as tanks the battle was quite a good show of how well British can fight when well led, (yes I was commanding). Keep the German heads down with heavy fire and advance on them as fast as you can. As a normal German player I know the fear of those 'dam guns', For the Germans they shouldn't hug defences, and keep mobility.

Overall a Fun Game.

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