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Rinaldi

AAR: Rinaldi v. Emory

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Maybe he had bad luck with his PaKs because he was moving them locally? That voids the big concealment bonus for unmoved AT-guns.

That's a thought. Although with the exception of the Gun he manhandled into a position to fire at my infantry's HQ, all his guns that he displaced a little bit had been marked already. Concealment of a heavy weapon matters little when the last known position is making its rounds on the Battalion net. What it accomplished in that context was keeping them out of harm's way from artillery.

Edited by Rinaldi

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FINAL TURN REPORT (Turns 95 - 109)

As I mentioned a few hours earlier, my opponent had motioned that he was ready to ceasefire. He had the sportsmanship to say that he would attempt to breakout of objectives he could not feasibly hold and spare us both the droll mop-up actions. However, there was still of bit of fighting left to do as I pushed hard in the final turns to secure a victory:

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I get off on the wrong foot during my final assault on the hamlet/farming community, as I mis-time my waypoints. The scout element and trail element get intertwined, just in time for a MG to open up and drop two men. Frustrated at careless losses so late in the game, I push up a Sherman, blood in my eyes, to put some point blank HE fire downrange and protect the pinned down infantry.

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Blithely ignoring a panzerfaust shot at them, the tank crew nuzzles through a tree line and begins to systematically HE every enemy in sight:

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In short order, effective outbound fire ceases, and the surviving infantry of the assault platoons only mop up a handful of Germans in attics, or hiding behind ruined buildings. Back at the main event in the large town, here's the situation:

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I've had to commit my mortar squad as riflemen (a role they are surprisingly effective at at such close proximity) to re-invigorate the advance through the center of town. This time, resistance crumbles rapidly, and I suffer only a handful of further casualties to small arms fire. Shermans moving with target arcs are able to catch Germans attempting to filter out of buildings and down alleyways, and enemy casualties mount:

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The village is a war-torn mess, and as buildings collapse to HE fire, riflemen locking down avenues of retreat pick off stunned survivors:

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At one and the same time, the other attacking platoon (who is also now being buoyed by dismounted halftrack crews, bazookas and the mortar men) attempt to seize the church and the buildings around it at their end of town. They are able to push up to the stone wall, but begin trading fire with Germans who have displaced to the ground floor of the buildings around the church. They can lock down the entire courtyard, and carbine armed troops aren't going to gain fire superiority until the MMGs and tanks are brought up. As they huddle under MG fire, I gun a supporting Sherman tank in - once again in a reckless and frustrated fashion - to try and rescue the pinned down infantry. 

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It does so immediately, and with the Sherman platoon deploying around the courtyard to spray buildings with coax, the pinned infantry are able to secure the courtyard, and systematically take the remaining houses:

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At this point, my enemy signaled for the ceasefire, and I was more than happy to accept; believing I had at least secured 2 of the 4 objectives (note: The two farming communities are actually the same objective - a previously agreed upon arrangement). The battle is a bloodbath, and before I see the tallyboard, I estimate my losses at nearing 40 percent of my overall force. As is often the case, its a bit better than you initially expect, but its still gory:

oyOvxpJ.jpg

Alright, far from my finest performance - but let's be honest, my opponent had a lot to do with that. Despite glaring errors with the deployment of his AT guns, and alot of his strong points not truly being able to support one another, he was a stubborn, determined defender. I'm not only satisfied with the "Tactical" rating, but relieved. The number crunch:

For Myself:

  1. Out of a force of 360 men, I suffer 133 casualties; almost evenly split between KIA or WIA
  2. Out of an original force of 25 Medium Tanks and Tank Destroyers, 7 have been destroyed or knocked out. Almost exactly a third.
  3. In short, I've lost a third of my overall force deployed.
  4. Casualties are particularly high among Officers. One tank platoon leader was made hors d'combat, B company's CO was made hors d'combat, and the company leader of the infantry, as well as one of the platoon leaders were also casualties.
  5. The infantry suffered tremendously, unsurprisingly. Even with overwhelming fire support, by the time the attached Infantry company reached the main village in my enemy's rear, the defenders in town effectively outnumbered them. I'd estimate that the bulk of my losses in material and personnel were caused there. Time to practice with some urban scenarios in singleplayer.

For Emory:

  1. Out of a force of 492 men, Emory has suffered 279 casualties; with almost twice as many killed as wounded. 
  2. 6 75mm AT guns were knocked out, as well as approximately 6 HMG42s and 3 81mm mortar tubes.
  3. My suspicion that he had a full Battalion was on the mark.
  4. The 213 survivors are largely spread among a rifle company in the 2nd hamlet, on the other side of the rail embankment, and the bypassed platoon at the second stone bridge. Unsurprisingly, there are a great number of shattered survivors from the PaK and rifle platoons that were hiding in treelines
  5. Its not often a defender outnumbers you. I'd like to think that puts my enormous losses in context.
  6. My enemy lacked TRPs and Mines - a godsend for keeping my momentum at a maximum after I got unstuck at the bridgeheads, I feel. A key hole in his defensive plan.

___

Thanks for everyone who stuck with the AAR. Forgive the rushed nature of this final report, the last set of turns was a blur; I invite as much questions, discussion and good-natured criticism as you have to offer. I'm also going to try and get my opponent to weigh in on the thread, he told me he plans on reading the AAR in its entirety. I hope to do something similar real soon.

I'm quite fond of the battle-group I took, both for what I feel is historically accurate and its relative flexibility. Although I had to put a lot of weight on a small amount of infantry, they managed to do their job against superior enemy infantry. Had I not got sucked into street fighting without  a preparatory barrage, I think I could've escaped with far less of a  mauled taskforce. It is undoubtedly my single greatest mistake in this battle: my belated artillery strike in the center of town certainly helped, but when you have already taken 40 percent losses in the rifle platoons, its too little too late. 

On the to-do list is to compile this into a .pdf and compress the .bmps to smaller, manageable .jpegs.

Edited by Rinaldi

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<Snip>  I'm also going to try and get my opponent to weigh in on the thread, he told me he plans on reading the AAR in its entirety. I hope to do something similar real soon. <Snip>

 

Thanks Rinaldi, I really enjoyed this.  It will be interesting to hear what Emory has to say.  I am hoping to learn a few things especially reference AT guns placement and use.  

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Frustrated at careless losses so late in the game, I push up a Sherman, blood in my eyes, to put some point blank HE fire downrange and protect the pinned down infantry.

I know exactly what you mean. If you'd had flamethrowers those would be some crispy fried fritzes.

 I've had to commit my mortar squad as riflemen (a role they are surprisingly effective at at such close proximity) to re-invigorate the advance through the center of town.

That's something I learned during my Road to Montebourg series, mortar teams make excellent ad-hoc CQB troops. Five or six guys with M1 Carbines can throw a lot of lead in a short time.

It does so immediately, and with the Sherman platoon deploying around the courtyard to spray buildings with coax, the pinned infantry are able to secure the courtyard, and systematically take the remaining houses:

Yeah, who needs the weapons platoon when you've got tanks anyway?! ;)

You really had the red mist descending on you right at the end, eh?

Looks like you were up against a wall near the end of that battle, when it seemed enemy resistance was slacking off actually seemed to be a planned withdrawal. Or Emory always intended to keep the meat of his manpower in the big town in the first place. It would be nice to hear some thoughts from him regarding his setup and defense plan. 

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Excellent AAR, very enjoyable.  Thank you for the time taken to explain your plan, actions and mistakes so clearly.

I'd also like to encourage Emory to post some comments here on how he saw the game playing out and his comments on his view of your maneuvering would be very welcome.

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Nice AAR, Rinaldi. :) I enjoyed your commentary and explanations, and it's great to see it complete with a nice summary/analysis at the end. Congratulations on your victory, I think you did great! 

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Rinaldi,

  Really nice job.  I enjoyed being there right alongside your troops.  It had a very nice personal feel to it. 

  Your choice of screen shots was excellent.  It really kept us in the thick of things as well as giving the overall picture. 

  Thanks for posting.  These AARs are really a labor of love.  They take so much time and effort to put together, but the payoff is how appreciated they are.

Heinrich505

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 My plan for this game was to have a company in each objective area (i.e: The farmhouses and the crossing-sites) . At first I wanted to defend the outskirts of the town, but lacked the foxholes and cover to accomplish that and put the whole company in town. I made sure to bring extra panzerschrecks sicne I had a feeling that I would lose my AT guns quickly. Fortunately that paid off.
 

Thanks Rinaldi, I really enjoyed this.  It will be interesting to hear what Emory has to say.  I am hoping to learn a few things especially reference AT guns placement and use.  

 The AT guns on the right were deployed with the goal of trying to have the best possible sightlines on Rinaldi's flanks, and concealment. The deployment of the ATGs in the middle and on my left were rushed as it was really late when I finished my deployment. I wish I spent more time in placing them.

Sorry for the delay guys.

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<Snip>  The deployment of the ATGs in the middle and on my left were rushed as it was really late when I finished my deployment. I wish I spent more time in placing them. <Snip> 

The set up phase can be time consuming, especially for the defense.  There was a thread about the set up phase recently where @IanL had some sound advice and is linked below. 

  http://community.battlefront.com/topic/120889-the-setup-phase/?do=findComment&comment=1633320 

 

Thanks for letting us watch the battle.  

Edited by MOS:96B2P

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Glad you all enjoyed it. I'm hoping to do another DAR soon with someone I'm trading PMs with, I've yet to broach the subject however.

That will be nice to read. :) 

 

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