Operation BREVITY: Fort Capuzzo
Afrika Korps #45
|Britain||1st Durham Light Infantry|
|Britain||4th Royal Tank Regiment|
|Germany||5th Panzer Regiment|
|Italy||102ª Divisione Fanteria Motorizzata "Trento"|
|Italy||62º Reggimento Fanteria Motorizzata "Sicilia"|
|Overall Rating, 14 votes|
|Scenario Rank: 419 of 586|
|Parent Game||Afrika Korps|
|Layout Dimensions||88 x 58 cm
35 x 23 in
|Scenario Requirements & Playability|
|Afrika Korps||maps + counters|
Following the capture of Halfaya Pass, a squadron of the 4th Royal Tank Regiment and the 1st DLI Infantry Battalion headed for Fort Capuzzo. The battered colonial outpost had become a linchpin of the Axis defenses, more for its ease of location than any defensive benefits.
After exchanging fire with German tanks nearby, the Matildas went in alone to force the garrison to surrender. It didn't work. After a second failed attempt was made the force withdrew east to refuel and rearm.
|AFV Rules Pertaining to this Scenario's Order of Battle|
|3 Errata Items|
All Bren carriers should have a movement value of 7.
(Shad on 2010 Dec 15)
Two British infantry have their full strengths printed on the back. They should both be "2-3" when reduced.
(Shad on 2010 Dec 15)
The L3/35 with ID# 1505 has the incorrect movement factor printed on it. The movement factor should be 7, not 8.
(plloyd1010 on 2014 Nov 24)
A small UK force of Matildas and Inf assault a mixed defense, IT inf and GE tanks. The UK won the scenario, with 12+ step losses inflicted, and all 3 entrenchment hexes occupied, and giving up only 5 steps lost. It did come down to the last turn, as the Germans had some shots at the Matilda that, if they hit, would have pushed the UK losses to 7, causing a draw at that point. But the GE tank dice were really off. They missed on 20 some consecutive shots that had an 11 or 12 shot.
This is probably a good learning scenario. The Germans can use the hill to protect their weaker tanks, and the Pz IIIs can cause havoc with the British Brens (against careless play you could easily score 4-6 step losses by taking out the carriers and passengers with AT fire).
The best british move is to push the Matildas into the wire, but if you don't cover your flank the meager GE/IT AT assets could score hits that will essentially end the scenario.
|Fort Capuzzo - Afrika Korps Scenario 45|
Well I hooked up with another contributor here yesterday, Darryl Sims in a face-to-face game, thus adding yet another 'live' opponent, and we certainly had some fun, as well as off-topic chuckles.I'm pretty sure we'll be battling again in the next couple of weeks.
The scenario heading this post is a smallish one but varied with each side possessing 7 or so INF units, some tank platoons and ordnance but no OBA. There is also a little desert fort to capture with surrender rules involved too and this is all fought over quite a decent size expanse. Here's a short AAR of the battle :
‘Operation- BREVITY : Fort Capuzzo’
Near Halfaya Pass : 15th May 1941
Scenario played 14th July 2009
Following the capture of Halfaya pass, a squadron of the 4th Royal Tank Regiment and the 1st Durham Light Infantry Bn.headed for Fort Capuzzo. The battered colonial out-post had become a lynch pin of the Axis defences, more for its ease of location than any defensive benefits.
Around 1pm, two Matilda tanks ‘riding point’ some way ahead of the main British force spotted 16 German Panzers advancing toward them some 2.5 km away. The Panzers, made up of Pz III’s & II’s then split into two even sections with each one rounding the Matildas flanks. There was a flurry of long range shooting as well as maneuvering for 90 minutes, but with little damage at all on either side. By this time, the main British forces had come into sight. Within 15 minutes , the British had suffered the loss of half their Bren carriers and a section of 2pdr AT guns from German tank fire 2kms distant. The two Matildas out front were also eliminated in some very close-in tank action by the Panzers.
But this proved to be the Axis high-point. The British pressed on with their attack , and this included another 8 Matilda tanks heading towards Capuzzo. The German Panzers harassed these thick-skinned monsters but were unable to stop them. Their 50mm shells pinging off like peas against a house. The Panzers efforts began to prove costly to themselves too. Soon, 6 of them had become victims to Matilda close range fire that was supported by the DLI troops. The Matildas pressed toward Capuzzo and once they were by its perimeter the Italian Major sent forward a whole company of Infantry to try and knock out the British tanks. This 151 man company lamely surrendered when asked, along with its officers as they were able to see 4 of their own L3/35 tankettes brewed by the unstoppable Matildas.
With the British infantry nearby and supporting the Matildas, it was all or nothing now for the remaining Italian garrison that consisted of a Coy. of Infantry, a platoon of MG’s,some AT and other ordnance. The British had inflicted more than enough casualties and prisoners. So out went the last company, and they withstood all enemy fire for a full 30 minutes and refused to surrender. In return, their own 65mm’s and mortar platoon pounded the British infantry in front of them. Some of the British became casualties whilst others broke. As they ran, this last Italian company fired into the fleeing British infantry and cut them down in flight. The problem was compounded when a couple of Matildas, fired at from one end by the last platoon of PzIII’s were then finished off from another angle by the Italian 47’s.
The attempt to take the Fort had failed, but a bloody nose had been administered to the Axis. The battle ended as a draw with Axis casualties too high (12 Panzers, 4 Italian tankettes destroyed, 152 Italians surrendered) and British casualties also not wanted with 51 infantry losses , 4 Matildas, 6 Bren carriers and a section of AT guns.
Those last British casualties meant that I was able to pull the COAL of a draw result out of the fire on the final turns... a good close match !
|Lesson: do not let Matildas get into an assault|
This was a face-to-face before the shared play applet was in place. My opponent was new to the game and only thirteen at the time and I had not played the system much myself. So this was more of an exploratory effort on both sides. The British move directly towards the "Fort," but allow their Matilida's to be approached by and engaged in assault by the German armor (the move and get initiative next turn ploy worked).
I cannot recall off-hand much more other than one Matilda survived. The British were knocking on the door as I recall when the scenario ended.
Sorry not much detail here, just documenting some of the older, early plays.
One step of Matilda's advanced for the first five turns as German tanks moved south to intercept. Balance of British units entered board on turn 6 and two Brens were knocked out at long range by Panzers. It took about seven turns for the British to reach the wire, where they were stopped by the Panzers and Italian artillery and small arms fire. It seemed the British simply did not have enough men to carry out the mission. Although the Matildas have great armor, but their lack of viable offensive weaponry made them less than useful. I may try this one again, just to see if I can improve on the British performance.