A hot day's work was an
early scenario that I created when my own Great War Spearhead forces were
small, and I was just too darned keen to push the plastic around the
table. The scenario is quite a nice training scenario, and so when my son
commented that he would like to try a GWSH game, we chose this small
scenario. I have now played the game on a number of occasions and, as I
comment in the scenario itself, it warrants replaying if you want a short
but interesting game. The scenario can be found here.
This game presents a challenge for a single BEF Brigade (with the 'mad
minute' ): the task of protecting a small town for an advancing force of
two German regiments. A significant difficulty for the British is that the
command radius of the single brigade means that the player can't cover all
of the possible avenues of attack. The Germans on the other hand have more
options as tthe German player has two regiments to manouvre. Of course he
is still limited by the divisional command radius.
The British player deployed on either
side of the central town (the objective opf the game. He deployed his
supporting artillery to the rear of his main positon, with two infantry
companies, and the attached divisional cavalry in reserve
British gun line, and reserves, seen here at the start of the battle.
The German plan was
simple but solid: attack along either flank, sweep behind the town,
cutting away the defending troops and so avoiding the need for a
direct (and probably bloody) assault on the town.
The German left wing
advances over the intervening hill lead by the divisional cavalry.
This attack was quickly halted by withering small arms fire, and
heavy artillery support from the attached 18pdrs. Things didn't look
too good for the German attack at this stage.
German right wing was supported by a regiment of 77mm field guns
which the commander brigaded on table. These guns brought the
British centre under pressure, and when the 105mm howitzers also hit
these troops, things started to look decidedly dodgy. Two out of
three companies are seen here suppressed.
The German right wing
regiment can be seen here moving past the British centre. The plan
saw the regiment feint towards the British centre, and then go right
The British left wing
came under severe pressure as the German attack developed. These
troops found themselves under heavy and accurate fire from the
German 105mm howitzers. The Brigade has already taken casualties
here, the two remaining infantry stands are suppressed, and the only
stand capable of fighting is the divisional cavalry stand seen here
arriving in the nick of time. They were barely able to dismount
before coming under accurate German fire themselves.
The British commander
tried to reinforce his crumbling left wing by withdrawing stands
from his centre. Companies can be seen here rushing to shore up the
flank. The battle hung in the balance as each side approached
critical morale tests. One crucial turn of fire from the German 105s
however saw the day go to the German commander as the British
Brigade took too many casualties and withdrew from its position.
My son Nick had commanded the German
forces in this his first Great War Spearhead adventure, and had done well.
He had taken the position without having to commit his troops to a costly
assault on the town itself. "Until next time" I muttered......