Lt Konerko stood in front of the company officers. We finally have a crack at the fascists! We are to take this hill there with anti tank guns guarding this road. 2nd platoon, you have the honor of the direct assualt for Mother Russia. 3rd platoon, you will strike the hill from the right. 1st platoon will protect the left flank by neutralizing the trenches and bunker guarding the road. JrLt Bessonov failed to hear anything after that. His platoon would protect the left flank! Clearly the CO did not feel he was the equal yet to his fellow platoon commanders despite all men being equal in the workers paradise. And it got worse. After the meeting the CO pulled him aside and said, " Bessonov, you are improving but I have assigned a sub machine gun squad to take out the bunker. You and Shakulo worry about the trenches." Lt Konerko didn't even think he could handle the bunker!
Lt Bressonov Scholarly/ pleasure Gr II
Sgt Shakulo 1st sq addicted alcohol Gr II
Cpl Zurvich acting 2nd sq generous/ music Gr I poor morale
Cpl Corok acting 3rd sq negative/ government Gr I
3 squads, 1 MMG, 1 SMG squad, 2 T-34s
Trenches top left/ bunker top right
swamp center right
What is your plan Jr Lt? You get 2 stonks of 81mm fire but no smoke
Bessonov plans to advance up to the far edge of the swamp in a line behind his one tank with the 2nd squad ( his weakest)and MMG in the swamp to anchor. From there he would human wave assault the trench. Lt Konerko order the other T-34 with the SMG sq to follow the road and take out the bunker.
JrLt Bessonov in middle with pistol
The russians catch several breaks early. The pre game mortars pin the germans in the bunker and the MMG in the trench jams early on.
The stunned crew in the bunker finally gather their wits and fire their 75mm gun destroying the T-34 tank just before it moves beyond their field of fire. Their shots are not enought to disuade the SMG squad however and they eventually break through the wire. In the center the T-34 causes a Stug to withdraw out of a gun pit and Bessonov manages to keep all the men moving forward. Just as he blows the whistle to signal the final charge into the trench an 81 mm shell lands in the midst of 2nd squad as german shells begin to land.
You can see the explosion of the 81mm shell center right
Bessonov charged ahead hoping that his platoon would follow. 2nd and 3rd squad did. 1st squad sustained 2 casualties in the bombardment but the men refused to move. Sgt Shakulo started physically kicking the men; 3 responded. He took those three and started his charge!
3rd squad reached the trenchline first. 4 Germans with a LMG. The LMG cut the russians down like wheat. 3rd squad sustained 3 casualties and Cpl Corok was wounded. The attack was stopped cold.
Sgt Shakulo reached the trench with only a 3 men and an LMG. He faltered for a second but was determined not to let JrLt Bessonov get into the trench without him! "Fire" he shouted and threw grenades at the MMG crew. It worked, their gun was not as agile and the russians entered the trench killing 2 and the others ran like beaten dogs.
Bessonov could not believe Shakulo was entering the trench with only 3 men! His 10 had to win! The german LMG fired and his troops temporarily halted. Bessonov swore but Zuvich started shouting out a patriotic song. The men started singing and went over the top with their Jr Lt. [had a heroic event that I used to rally the LMG team automatically] After a brief struggle 2 germans fell; 2 fled and the trench was secure!
A tiger tank showed up to shell the trench but the SMG team moved out from the bunker they had captured and the tank, without infantry support, withdrew.
Great battle! The russians did not face a lot of infantry this time so it was a little easier than normal. Hey, sometimes the dice work in your favor!!
roll d6 1 paratroopers 2-3 ss 4-6 regular line troops ( I rolled a 2)
1 squad with gr II leader, 1/2 squad with gr II leader 1 MMG with gr III leader
1 75mm ATG 1 Stug
1 module of 81mm Mtr with 2 pre plotted positions. 1 trench 1 bunker 4 hexes of wire
1 unit must set up behind the main line
Reinforcement on turn 4 1 Tiger (If 2 person game add 1 squad and gr III leader, I only rolled the Tiger)
Lt Konerko congratulated JrLt Bessonov after the battle on his leadership. 2nd squads morale also improved to normal. The 2 normal squad leaders for 2nd and 3rd squad are back next battle but Jr Lt Bessonov is fond of Cpl Zuvich now and would like to get him promoted into his own squad if possible. JrLt Bessonov also grudgingly admits that Sgt Shakulo is a good squad leader but still doesn't trust him. Several days later Lt Konerko informs him that Pravda wants to do a story on Sgt Shakulo and a reporter will accompany the squad next mission to see Sgt Shakulo in action. Should be interesting...
PS Richard Clarke is actually formatting the Platoon Forward rules. I am actually working with him on the edits. His art work and design is beautiful!! It will be worth the wait.