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249 American Resolve vs German Steel

1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 Rating 4.00 (1 Vote)
Victory Results:
 67 %
Record a victory for ALLIES ARMY  33 %
Total plays 6 - Last reported by JVHillegas-Elting on 2021-12-19 00:53:45

Battle of El Guettar
Tunisia March 23, 1943. After the resounding defeat at the hands of the Germans in the Battle of Kasserine pass in late February 1943, the inexperienced and undisciplined Americans were whipped into shape by General George S. Patton who had been appointed to replace General Fredendall to do just that.
In an attempt to press home their advantage, German General von Arnim decided to attack US forces guarding the mountain pass near the village of El Guettar. The Americans, who had been planning an attack of their own and had sent their armor further North to attack the Axis forces, found themselves confronted with the full might of the German 10th Panzer Division.
Will the Americans’ newly-found resolve prove strong enough against the German Steel?

 

  American German
Division 1

10 Squad Bases
- 27 Regular Infantry
- 3 Officers
- 4 Elite Infantry
- 2 Machine Gun Crews
- 1 Mortar Crew

2x Medic
1x Engineer
1x Flamethrower
2x Concealed Concealed

6 Panzer IV
2 Marder I
(use Stug III or other proxy figures)
Division 2

2 Squad Bases
- 5 Regular Infantry
- 1 Officer
- 2 Elite Infantry

2 M1 57mm AT Guns
2 M3 GMC Halftracks (see Special Rules)

1x Medic
2x Concealed Concealed

2 Entrenchments (may be freely deployed anywhere in Division 2’s set-up area)

6 Squad Bases
- 14 Regular Infantry
- 2 Officers
- 8 Elite Infantry

6 Sdkfz 251 Halftracks

1x Flamethrower
1x Alpha Unit
4x  Panzergrenadier (see Special Rules)

Strategy Decks Artillery 1
Artillery 2
Command 1
German Air Support 1 (the second option on the Air Reconnaissance card cannot be used!)
Starting Strategy Cards 2 2
Operations Cards 014 No surrender -
Deployment Zone Div. 1: any Hill hex on maps 20A and/or 17A.
Div. 2: non-Hill hex on map 14A.
Div. 1: four easternmost Road hexes on map 16B.
Div. 2: reinforcements in the Status Phase of Round 2 in any eastern-edge map hex on map 16B.
Starting Initiative   Initiative Token
Objective

Victory is determined at the end of Round 7 based on the number of Victory Point (VP) markers under German control. The Americans start the game in control of all VP markers. Note that the Command Objective markers must all be claimed according to standard game rules.

Based on how many VP markers the Germans control at the end of Round 7, the following victory conditions apply:

  • 0 = Decisive US victory
  • 1 = Major US victory
  • 2 = Minor US victory
  • 3 = Minor German victory
  • 4 = Major German victory

A decisive German victory can be obtained in two ways:

  • By the Germans controlling all four Victory Objectives and having exited at least three Heavy Vehicles off the Western map edge (compass direction 6) at the end of Round 7 (i.e. the Heavy Vehicles may be exited on any round, but the condition of controlling all 4 objective hexes at the end of Round 7 still applies).
  • By having eliminated all enemy units at any time during the game.
Rounds 7
Actions per turn 3 3
Reinforcements US Division 2 receives the following reinforcements in the Status Phase of Round 4, placed in any hex on the western edge of map 13A:
3 M3 GMC halftrack (see Special Rules)
German Division 2 are placed as reinforcements in the Status Phase of Round 2 in any Eastern-edge map hex on map 16B.
Special Rules - -

Notes, Special & Optional Rules

NOTES:

M3 Gun Motor Carriage (GMC) tank destroyer halftracks
This scenario makes use of an American armored unit type first introduced with an Operations Card produced by 1A Games for the Days of the Fox expansion: the M3 Gun Motor Carriage (GMC) tank destroyer halftrack. (This is card number A06, “Gun Motor Carriage.”)
The M3 GMC was equipped with a variant of the 75mm M1897A5 artillery gun, which was functionally the same gun as the M3 Lee/Grant and the majority of M4 Sherman medium tanks used during the war. Upon its introduction into combat by the United Kingdom in North Africa in May 1942, the sponson-mounted 75mm gun on the M3 Lee/Grant proved to have a longer range and greater Penetration capability than most Axis armored units. It was also effective against infantry, because ammunition for the gun included high explosive, anti-personnel rounds.
For these reasons, players may opt for a more historically accurate alternative to this unit’s stats than those represented in the Operations Card (see below).

American reinforcements
Sources on this battle differ regarding the type of American anti-tank unit reinforcements which arrived during the fighting. Some sources state these reinforcements included both M3 GMCs and M10 tank destroyers, while other sources state they were solely M3 GMCs. In this scenario, these units are represented by the arrival of three M3 GMC halftracks during the Status Phase of Round 4. In the Further Balancing Rules below, there is an option for the Americans to integrate M10 tank destroyers as part of their reinforcements during Round 4.

German ranged offensive capabilities
Sources on this battle also refer to the German use of FlaK 36 88mm anti-tank guns. In this scenario, such ranged offensive capability is represented by the collective firepower of German armored units and cards in the German Air Support Deck I.

Suppressive fire and the Open Top vehicle trait
The Marder I unit (and, optionally, the M3 GMC unit—see below) is considered to have an Open Top. This means the vehicle crews are susceptible to suppressive normal and fire-and-movement attacks from squads, other vehicles, and equipment units, as well as suppressive Area Attacks from mortar squads and artillery and air support Strategy Cards. Hits from such attacks upon open-topped vehicles are calculated in the same way as suppressive fire against squads, and indicated using Squad Condition tokens. (For more background, see the Board Game Geek thread “Open Top; a new (?) realization?” at https://boardgamegeek.com/thread/2289403/open-top-new-realization.)

SPECIAL RULES:

Marder I
The German Marder I was a self-propelled anti-tank vehicle equipped with a 75mm PaK-40 gun (which was the precursor to—and functionally the same as—the gun fitted to Panzer IV tanks beginning March 1942 with the Ausf. F2 version). It featured a fixed, open-topped turret on a tracked chassis.

The Marder I unit stats for this scenario are:

  • Type: Heavy Vehicle
  • Movement = 6
  • Armor = 2
  • Against Infantry: Range = 5, Firepower = 6
  • Against Vehicles: Range = 8, Firepower = 10
  • Open Top, therefore it is vulnerable to suppressive attacks
  • Sturdy, therefore being lightly damaged by Op Fire does not cause the vehicle to become fatigued
  • No Turret, therefore it cannot make fire and movement attacks

Panzergrenadier specialization
For each Panzergrenadier squad a friendly vehicle shares a hex with, the vehicle receives +1 cover when attacked from short range by enemy squads (only!). Put a light vehicle damage token in the squad base to represent this specialization.

Hills & ridges
All Hill overlay tiles are considered to be Level 1 Hills.
Hill hexes are impassable for vehicles.
Reminder: Per standard rules, no units may enter Level 2 Hill hexes from Level 0, or vice versa!
Units attacked from a lower elevation get +1 cover. This cover does not apply when under artillery or air attack, but it does apply when such a unit is attacked by a mortar.
Designers’ note: Although thematically it would be befitting not to apply the cover bonus to mortar attacks, mortars are considered strong enough already by the designers. So the decision not to grant the additional cover against mortar attacks is purely for game balance reasons.

Concealment of anti-tank (AT) guns
AT guns may be assigned Concealed markers. They are revealed as per normal rules.
Also per normal rules, note that units may not set up concealed in hexes with Victory or Command Objective markers, nor move into such hexes and remain concealed.

OPTIONAL RULES:

Further Balancing Rules

If you play the scenario and the two players are of unequal skill, the following rules may be used for further balancing. Note that the Deadly Artillery rule below is, in fact, historically accurate, but it is likely to affect the scenario’s balance very strongly!

To help the Americans, Choose ONE of the following:

  • Deadly Artillery: Attack cards from Artillery Decks I and II hit on a 4+.
  • Desperate Defenders: Add the Desperate Defenders Operations Card (013). This means American squads may fire at half firepower when making a concentrated attack even when pinned or disrupted; squads containing an officer do not gain any additional benefit.
    Designers’ note: Though not mentioned anywhere explicitly in the rules, we also consider this card to apply to assaults, as we feel it fits thematically. In effect this means that a disrupted squad that’s being assaulted can still defend at half firepower.
  • M10 tank destroyers: Replace up to 2 of the M3 GMC units with M10 tank destroyers as American reinforcements during the Status Phase of Round 4.

To help the Germans:

  • Add two squads of four Regular Infantry each and an Opel Blitz truck. They arrive along with the Round 2 German reinforcements.

M3 Gun Motor Carriage (GMC) tank destroyer halftracks
Reflecting the Days of the Fox expansion Operations Card produced by 1A Games, all US halftracks in this scenario are the M3 GMC tank destroyer variant. Against vehicles, its Range = 6 and Firepower = 6. Against Infantry, the standard halftrack unit stats are to be applied (Range = 5 and Firepower = 4). It has Concussive Firepower capabilities (+3 range and +3 firepower when attacking squads in buildings or pillboxes). This unit may not carry squads.

If both players agree, the following more historically accurate alternative unit stats may be applied, instead of those indicated on Operations Card A06:

  • Type: Light Vehicle
  • Movement = 7
  • Armor = 1
  • Against Infantry: Range = 5, Firepower = 6
  • Against Vehicles: Range = 6, Firepower = 8
  • Open Top, therefore it is vulnerable to suppressive attacks
  • No Turret, therefore it cannot make fire and movement attacks

 

Tags: American Army, German Army, Complexity: Medium, Rounds, Boards, Year: 1943

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alecrespi's Avatar
alecrespi replied the topic: #647 6 months 2 weeks ago

I got to help play-test this one, so I played it about six times. It was a lot of fun

If I didn't remember wrong you should be able to report more than one gameplay.
You can click USA/GER icon to assign a victory and increment the "played counter".
JVHillegas-Elting's Avatar
JVHillegas-Elting replied the topic: #645 6 months 2 weeks ago
I got to help play-test this one, so I played it about six times. It was a lot of fun

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