First Axis #6
|(Attacker) Slovak Republic||vs||Poland (Defender)|
|Poland||3rd Mountain Brigade|
|Slovak Republic||1st "Janošík" Infantry Division|
|Overall Rating, 5 votes|
|Scenario Rank: 73 of 607|
|Parent Game||First Axis|
|Maps||4: 14, 16, 17, 21|
|Layout Dimensions||86 x 56 cm
34 x 22 in
|Scenario Requirements & Playability|
|Road to Berlin||maps|
Poland's military dictatorship had taken advantage of Czechoslovakia's woes to seize several pieces of territory in 1938. When Germany planned to attack Poland the next year, the new Slovak government gladly agreed to allow the Germans to move through Slovakia and mobilized their own small army to assist in the invasion. The Slovaks followed the Germans across the border and only several days after the offensive began did they see their only serious action of the campaign.
The Slovaks, still not really organized into an effective army, had the misfortune to run into one of the Polish army's best units fighting in its home district. The Slovaks reeled back without having taken any of their objectives, though their casualties were relatively light - too many of their formations broke and ran and the Poles did not deign to pursue them. The Slovak government declared victory and annexed the lost territories, but these had been won by German generosity rather than force of arms. And the Germans gave nothing without a price.
|AFV Rules Pertaining to this Scenario's Order of Battle|
|The Indirect Approach|
In this scenario a Polish elite mountain unit of two battalions faces about four battalions of Slovak troops of fair quality. The Polish units get to set up in mountains and are charged with defending several towns, most of which are far to the rear but one of which is within 1200 meters of the Slovak entry. The Slovaks have artillery and the Polish have morale.
Students of Chandler (and no, I'm not reading him right now it just seems that the comments ring true for the last two AARs), will recognize the title of this AAR. The Polish set up in a very straightforward process with one company on each hill blocking the Slovak use of the roads to the towns in the rear. There really is too much terrain to defend for the Polish so they expect to use their remaining two companies as a fire brigade if necessary.
The Slovak Plukovnik (Colonel) looks at the task ahead and chooses to attack where there are no immediate victory point hexes and to do so with the vast majority of his force, (everything except one company which demonstrates in front of the western hill with its town).
The Polish Lieutenant Colonel laughs at the strategy and indeed at the three hour mark such laughter appears appropriate as the score is 40-9 in the Poles favor, however the Slovaks have isolated the troops on the hill and are beginning to move forward. Too late, the Polish see that the Slovaks will have the opportunity to become emeshed in the towns to the northeast and gain substantial victory points. A strong flank attack is in order.
The Poles come rapidly to deliver the flank attack but are hammered by artillery and take extensive losses resulting in their arrival with insufficient force to do anything but provide additional targets for the Slovaks.
I should note that the Slovaks had nearly every die roll of consequence go their way but their overwhelming numbers need to be used in a very Soviet way. Losses need to be taken and the Poles don't have the firepower of the Germans so a little rash action on the part of the Slovaks isn't a bad idea.
Finally, use the Slovak cyclists to put pressure on the Polish deep defense. Those guys can get to a lot of town hexes quite easily if the Pole doesn't defend well.
A fun scenario with a lot of interesting terrain and the reason to try it out. Well worth the time.
|Accurate Slovak artillery plus numbers win the day|
This medium sized 4 map scenario has a large Slovak battle group take on well armed Polish mountain troop with good morale. The Slovaks have to take town hexes and inflict losses to win the day. The key to the Slovak attack is to not get into a slogging match with the Poles but use numbers and the mobility of the cycle troops to move round Polish troops and force them off the board 16 & 14 hills to defend the towns in the rear. The Slovaks advanced in three groups with the central group of ENG,INF and CYC making for the centre of the board while the other two groups pinned the Polish defenders. The Poles reacted by pulling back from the front line dug outs and retreating to cover the towns. However this exposed them to the Slovak OBDA which proved to be very accurate causing Polish losses which could not be afforded. As the scenario developed into a straggling group of small skirmishes spread all over the board it was obvious that the game was slowly swinging the way of the Slovaks as the rear towns on board 17 were captured by the CYC who were now deep in the rear of the Polish lines. The Poles counter attacked where they could relying on better morale and firepower to win the assaults this worked for a limited time but could not compensate for the numbers of Slovak troops who managed to replace the losses in those assaults. I had been keeping tabs on VPs from about Game Turn 7 (of 24) and for a long time the VPs for each side matched each other. At one stage the Slovak artillery which had done so much damage nearly turned the battle back in favour of the Poles when a salvo dropped short causing friendly fire casualties, however the Polish ground troops were unable to press home that temporary blip and by game end had lost control of three of the four towns and had suffered a major defeat. This is a good scenario, possibly favouring the Slovaks. Recommended.