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Brett & Vince's C&C Kings Officers 1940-41 Campaign Diary
Well others have posted campaign blogs for the real hardcore campaigns in the supplements. So I thought I would post one for our 'softer' version that Brett and I are playing and that we could add to as we bumble along.

The 1940-41 Desert War Campaign lasts for 9 scenarios and kicks off with a scenario that represents the Italian army's bumbling & stumbling into Egypt that appeared to have little objective other than to 'enter Egypt' ? The scenario is a 16 turner called "Italy Invades Egypt".

The blog will not be AAR's as we of course post them elsewhere, but instead, rather a "this is what we are doing right now" type of blog. For results of EACH scenario and the final campaign tally a side needs to score 30% more points for a minor victory and 50% more points for a major victory. So even if one side wins more battles, its not a given they will win the campaign.

So today, scenario One has kicked off with me trying to get elements of the Italian 10th Army, more numerous than the Coldstream Guards, but unsurprisingly, lower moraled past the Guards and off the board. VC's are awarded for inflicting casualties, exiting troops and holding a road.

Brett certainly had a good today IMO. His guards, initially stretched in deployment, were abe to hold up some of the Italians and as Guardsmen, their well-trained and accurate rifle fire caused a good few Italians to lose their morale and become stragglers. But far harder hitting were his 2 batteries of 2pdrs that enjoyed ripping into 3 steps of my Cans of Beans disguised as tanks called L3/35's. However, Italian tankery honour was restored when their L5/40's both scored hits on the 2 steps of Brens, both needing 10's to hit.

But at the halfway stage, turn 8 of 16, the majority of Italians have gotten past the Men of England and are pushing onwards into Egypt. A battling 8 turns remain where the residual Italian forces will have to see how they contend with the defenders. Losses so far are 6 Italian step equivalents and 4 British step equivalents. With the guards controlling the road this puts the score at Britain 9pts and Italy 4pts. However, there are around 30pts of Italians about to exit.

Another blog entry tomorrow from me.
With 2 hours/ 8 turns left to go the Guards still have 18 VPs worth of various Italian units in differing morale conditions left behind to sort out. It may not be enough to tip the scales but may be able to balance them a bit. It's been quite a show so far! "We may not get them all but we'll make them pay for every grain of sand give them bloody hell" - anonymous British First Sergeant
Brett and I completed the last 8 turns of scenario #1 Italy Invades Egypt from the CCV Desert Campaign 1940-41 this morning.

The last 8 turns in fact proved more than intriguing. The Italians had made sure of their exits by turn 8, so these turn 9-16 events were all about the Italians preserving the troops that had to stay on board and making sure the higher moraled British didn't have a frenzy of a mop-up operation. For his part, I know Brett was keen to do exactly that.

All in all, from my Mussolini perspective, these 8 turns went quite well enough. My on-board artillery were never threatened, and the casualty exchange was merely 4 steps each. I was quite happy for an equal trade in the points given my concern yesterday for this very situation. I even tried a bit of OBA and plane straffing on his platoon guarding the 5 points worth of road, but his troops held up easily enough to this and kept hold of it.

Final score, with Italian exits, casualties totted for each side and the 5pts for the Brits holding the road came to Italy 38, Britain 15. This now is of course the running campaign tally going into the next game, where, I very much suspect, it'll be the Italians outnumbered, outgunned and out-moraled. I fully expect to lose that (scenario #2 Operation Compass) and so I will need to fight well enough in it to preserve any sort of lead, even with that 23 pts gap. Having surveyed the land to be fought over, I do have a plan or two up my sleeve to spoil British 7th Armoured ambitions. We meet on 7th December for session 1 in what is a 24 turn battle.
The second half of the battle was a bit of a surprise. I had given up on chasing down exiting units and accepted the inevitable loss. Right before the end I had just about every remaining British foot unit rallied and massed for a final attack on the stragglers but time was up. I had expected to be able to wreak a little more havoc than I did with the remaining force but the two assaults I made slowed things down. Especially the one where that one platoon of Italian INF stubbornly held out for over an hour. At one point I thought you were actually going to succeed in chasing down the lone HMG unit protecting the road with the L6/40 or eliminate it with an airstrike and/or OBA. I believe that considering the deployment and available personnel I didn't fare so bad. Truly my MVP was the 2-pdr -not only that it destroyed 3 steps of L3/35s but that it also survived as long as did from the repeated bombardments and airstrikes. That AT gunner should be considered as a candidate for a posthumously awarded Military Cross for his actions. I hope to and have to do a lot better on the offensive with the upcoming Operation Compass. Enjoy the spoils of Egypt!
(11-30-2013, 03:39 AM)nebelwurfer9 Wrote: . Enjoy the spoils of Egypt!

The Italians are reclined on sedans in Murza Metruh having ripe figs fed to them by Egyptian beauties !!
We started the second scenario of this campaign yesterday "Op Compass" but unfortunately a series of errors held up the start.

First Brett asked some questions over the VC's as he was not entirely sure as to what they intended and then strangely, his query, which I thought the answer was obvious at the time, then revealed that my set-up was completely awry and pointless to the game in hand !! So we were both guilty of misunderstanding the VC's, but certainly me more so by the fact that the set up was wrong to a degree of about 20 hexes out of place ! (what an idiot !)

So with a 90 minute delay or so, we went back to the drawing board, with me re-setting the Italian positions and Brett fully cognisant of what he needed to achieve and re-setting his entry points accordingly.

With that delay, only 4 turns were played, but it saw the British advance to Italian held hill positions and both sides revealing what crap firers their gunmen seem to be. So far, neither side has lost a step, but the Italians gave up one of the hills without a fight to the advancing Brits. Another smaller hill is currently under British attack against a dug-in Italian battalion at the top of the hill. The British here are a mix of infantry and tanks with a side-order of mortars in support. They are currently involved in slowly reducing the Italian will to resist at this hill. Finally, the main British thrust is advancing toward the main Italian defence on the biggest hill. Dug-in, higher up and readied for action, this could prove a slug-fest royale (or a damp squib if the Italians fold).

Points therefore at this stage are Italy 15pts (for the 2 x hills they occupy) and Britain 8pts (for the hill they solely own at present). These points will undoubtedly shift very soon. Next encounter in this is next saturday morning where we would hope to get at least twice as many turns in. I'm preparing for a day of Italian disappointment at this stage, I hope they prove me wrong :-)
The battle is just about to begin at this point and have been very lucky with my 25-pdrs and mortars not getting wiped out after 4 turns or taking any losses yet. There are a lot of possibilties with this one but clearing that northern hill of Italian units within three hexes of the road will be quite a task. Being down 23 CPs I have to at least try for it rather than just trying to hold on to the one hill and most likely clearing the smaller one. If the Italian lead in the campaign was about ten points less then I would most likely give up on taking all three hills but this is a campaign so both of us have to strive to get every VP we can. Hopefully the initiative advantage for the British will pay off for my sake; at least so I can get some results with my on-board artillery while they are in good order!
Session 2 of Scenario 2 "Operation Compass" in our nine scenario campaign C&C2 was played today with 5 more turns completed to take us to the end of turn 9 of 24 turns.

As before the British main advance continued to push to the main Italian defence on the furthest hill and to all intent and purposes, they pushed forward with little trouble really ? One thorn in their advance proved to be 2 x 20mm AA's commanded by a Maggiore with a 1 point fire modifier, meaning they could opp fire on the 11col up to 9 hexes away. In 4 such shots over 2 turns, this AA combo knocked off 3 steps and demoralised another unit. Quite amazing accuracy from the famed Italian gunners. Also, the distant British 25pdrs finally suffered one battery knocked out from massed Italian artillery pieces that had been in an artillery duel with them from very early on in the scenario.

There is also a small assault going on between the two opposing forces main lines here. A disordered Italian platoon that had fled earlier was caught by 2 x British INF platoons led by a LT. The assault has been going on for 3 turns now, with the Italian unit suffering a step-loss, but in good order and the 2 British platoons taking no morale or step-losses so far.

Other than that, the main hill is a direct fire scrimmage with the well-moraled British troops trying to wear down the Italian defenders and also aiming at Italian artillery positions. 4 x Italian HMG's are holding the main crest supported by 2 x INF platoons. The rest form a circular defence in case the British try to flow around.

Meanwhile, at the other, smaller, contested hill where the Italians deployed 8 INF platoons, no less than 3 of these Italian INF steps were knocked out because of

a) Persistant British direct fire from rifles, HMG's and some MKVI's that surround them and eventually wilted a platoon or two. And

b) Then, when one platoon fled, they were mown down completely by a whole company of Rolls-Royce armoured cars taking opp-fire at them.

At the end of the 9 turns I think both sides are happy with where they are. As a one-off scenario, the Italians are going to lose one suspects as far as VP's go. But with any campaign type game, its the scale of loss that matters for the overall campaign.

Points so far are:
British - 12pts ( 8pts for the unopposed hill capture and 4pts for step-losses inflicted)
Italian - 19pts (15pts for the two hills they hold, but for how long ? and 4pts for step-losses inflicted).

The struggle continues !
Not only were the Italian 20mm AA guns effective in mowing down advancing infantry but because of their range of 8 hexes they have forced one demoralized unit to flee quite a distance back for the safety of the southeastern hill area. That range alone could cause a lot of problems with units failing to rally from demoralization in the future. This is prompting the British forces to spend a lot of activations in keeping units at the main assault area in at least disrupted status or better. The fog of war has been very unpredictable at times as well, at least twice in this session halting British activations quite abruptly.

The going has been slow and tedious for the attack but most of the advancing forces are more or less where I originally intended them to be. At the start of the 6th turn I had THREE chances of running down Vince's forward observer with some A9 tanks and each time the upstart Tenente slipped away evading capture, continuing to be able spot for the massed Italian artillery batteries at a safer distance, being able to outrun the slower moving British armor so far.

For a while it was very tense and I had a hard time in getting any decent shots in but by the conclusion of turn 9 the British were able to balance out the step losses after being down by 3 for some time. The smaller, southwestern hill's defenses are finally, slowly being whittled down after many painstaking turns of virtually little or no results from a lot of firing. But now the overall attack is starting to show signs of gaining momentum. Also, the first tank v.s tank engagement has begun from a long range away but the first 6 volleys from the A9s have only bounced off the L6/40 tankettes so far. A British win still seems highly likely though it will be very tough to make it a decisive one. I really like the way this one is going though the going has been a bit slow -there are quite a few units on the map. I feel a little more confident in this battle so far than in earlier ones and feel that I have learned a lot from my previous 7 shared plays through a lot of trial and even more error.
Session 3 of Scenario 2 "Operation Compass" in our nine scenario campaign C&C2 was played today with 6 more turns completed to take us to the end of turn 15 of 24 turns.

The contest for the two remaining Italian hills continued today:

The smallest hill which started this session with 6.5 platoons was at the end of turn 15 reduced to just 5 platoons. 3 Italian steps were lost here as the British line continued to pour DF up at the dug-in Italians. They are still being supported by 2 x Mortar platoons and 3 platoons each of both MkIV's and Rolls-Royce armoured cars. It was an exercise in British patience, but it has slowly paid off. On turn 15 itself, with just 1 disrupted Italian platoon left in the front line here, the British infantry scaled the hill with 4 platoons. 1 was disprupted but 3 remain in good order ready to continue the attack from adjacent next turn. The Italian second line immediately behind is at full-strength and readying themselves for the tussle.

On the main hill, the attack has perhaps not fared so well ? Again, a numerous British firing line has DF'd constantly at the defenders but have themselves received quite effective fire in return. There was a small assault between the two lines at the start of the session involving a reduced Italian platoon and 2 x British platoons and this ended quickly as the British eliminated it. But then these two platoons began receiving point blank fire from Italian MG's and as well as sustaining a step-loss, they also demoralised and had to flee. During this session no ground was made at the main hill and the British line, including their Colonel has been thinned and become a little disorganised. Once more, the 2 x Italian AA's also manged to inflicta step-loss, this time on fleeing troops, taking thier tally to 4 x British steps removed.

The other bits of news is that British A10's removed an Italian can o' beans tank (eventually), and through15 turns, the numerous on-board Italian artillery, despite rolling on 30/42/55 column shots have removed just 1 step !!

At the end of this session the British have 20pts (1 x hill and 12 Italian step equivalents) and the Italians have 24pts (2 x hills and 9 British steps). However, this is a little false as once the small hill falls to the British (and I am presuming it will) the score will swing 28pts British to 19pts Italian (I think ??).

Chances of me winning the scenario dropping drastically to a 10-90% chance in favour of the British.

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