Ioribaiwa, Day Three
Kokoda Trail #20
|(Defender) Australia||vs||Japan (Attacker)|
|Australia||21st Infantry Brigade|
|Australia||25th Infantry Brigade|
|Japan||144th Infantry Regiment|
|Japan||41st Infantry Regiment|
|Overall Rating, 2 votes|
|Scenario Rank: --- of 598|
|Parent Game||Kokoda Trail|
|Layout Dimensions||43 x 28 cm
17 x 11 in
|Scenario Requirements & Playability|
Both sides lost their nerve as the third day of battle began. Brigadier Eather (worried that his Australians could no longer hold the ridge) asked for permission to withdraw and received orders to hold the ridge for "as long as possible," but also allowing him to decide when it was "no longer possible". He then promptly ordered a withdrawal. For his part, Maj. Gen. Horii decided this was the "Strategic Line" of his orders, and ordered the battalions of the 41st regiment to begin the march back over the Owen Stanleys through Kokoda Gap.
Although the fighting continued on a smaller scale, both the Japanese and Australians sides withdrew the bulk of the forces during the day and the Japanese were left in temporary possession of Ioribaiwa Ridge. At the end of a very long and nonfunctional supply line, they would hold it only as long as the Australians chose not to attack in force.
|1 Errata Item|
Ignore the "no units in hexes adjacent to any other unit" condition for the Australian 2/33rd Battalion.
(rerathbun on 2016 Jan 16)
|Sir, Would It Help If We Were To Run Away Some More?|
Aussies west of trail set up per scenario instructions, but Aussies east of trail couldn't, so I had one stack of units adjacent to two others. Their strategy was to have five platoons (4 reduced Inf + 1 HMG) stay behind to cover the escape for the rest of their units. The Japanese entered from the north and immediately began assaulting the five Aussie platoons. Through the early turns the Aussies held their ground and kept the Japanese from advancing south along the trail. As the game moved along, the Aussies were able to hold off the advancing Japanese while exiting 38 steps of infantry. The final score was 39-11, a major Australian victory. This one seems really tough for the Japanese to win since the bulk of their VP's are scored by eliminating Aussie units while the Aussies goal is to escape to the south - which is relatively easy to do once they reach the trail.
|Spotting the Australians a lap in a foot race|
In this scenario the Australians are trying to get away from the oncoming Japanese force. I leave a couple half steps to conduct opfire on the Japanese entering the trail, leave a couple half steps on the trail, and position a few more units to help block the trail later. Everything else is either on the trail ready to run, or on the backside of the hill.
The Japanese roll onto the blocking units as fast as possible, while the Australians run for the exit as fast as possible. But the Australians get up to a six hex head start towards the exit, and the Japanese cannot move any faster through jungle than the Australians. The Australians only have to throw out enough units to slow down the Japanese rush along the trail to allow the farthest flung Australians a chance to escape. The Australians inflict one step loss on the Japanese, and the Japanese inflict 18 steps. But the Australians exit 31 steps, and win a minor victory. I probably could have set up two of the half step units to exit vice sacrifice themselves and gotten the major victory.
I rate this one a 1. Yes, it was nice to have the Aussies win one, but it was just a foot race with the Australians having a huge lead. Boring. No real point in playing this one. The Japanese, who probably cannot win this one, at least had something to do. An Australian player would probably fall asleep winning this, and it would be the Japanese player’s only hope of victory. The unique fog of war rule is supposed to slow down the Australians (Japanese aren’t affected), but that had little impact. Thankfully it didn't last the full 18 turns. If someone was crazy enough to try and fight the Japanese instead of run it might be a decent battle scenario. Not sure why, though…