After a squad activated by an Assault action has completed its movement, it can execute an assault attack against an adjacent enemy hex. Assault attacks represent brutal combat at close quarters between soldiers, as the active squad, and any squads supporting it with combined fire, seek to advance into the enemy hex, forcing the enemy to retreat.
The following rules govern assaults:
- Only squads may execute Assault actions. The active squad (or any supporting squad) may not contain a figure with the heavy infantry weapon trait.
- After the active squad has moved, the active squad may select an adjacent hex containing at least one enemy unit as the target of the assault.
- The active squad may not assault a hex that contains an enemy heavy vehicle.
- If an assaulting squad enters a hex containing a minefield or razor wire during its movement, it may not assault attack during that activation.
Resolving an Assault Attack
All assaults attacks are resolved using the sequence below:
- The active player declares which (if any) friendly squads are supporting the assault with combined fire.
Up to two friendly squads in hexes adjacent to the target hex may support the attack, even fatigued squads (but not pinned or disrupted squads). As with normal combined fire, squads supporting the attack only add half their firepower to the attack.
- Determine the attack strength in the assault. This number is equal to the firepower against infantry (even if the target hex contains a light vehicle) of the active squad, plus half the firepower (against infantry) of any squads supporting the assault.
Flamethrower Assaults: For each attacking squad that has the flamethrower specialization, the attack gains +2 firepower.
- Determine the defender’s attack strength. This number is equal to the total firepower (against infantry) of all defending squads and light vehicles in the hex. A defending squad that is disrupted does not contribute any firepower. A defending squad that is pinned only contributes half its firepower.
Exception: If at least one defending officer is present in the target hex, all pinned units contribute full firepower, rather than half.
- The attacker now simultaneously rolls a number of black dice equal to his attack strength, and a number of red dice equal to the defender’s terrain cover plus any cover bonuses provided to squads by entrenchments or pillboxes. Cover bonuses from fortifications are cumulative.
Example: An assault attack is made against a wood hex containing 3 defending squads. Two of these defending units are in entrenchments. The total defense dice rolled by the attacking player is 6 (2 for the woods terrain cover, plus 2 for each entrenchment).
Flamethrower Assaults: If there is at least one squad among the attacking squads with the flamethrower specialization, the defenders’ combined cover value is reduced by 5.
Important: Light vehicles do not contribute their armor to the defense of an assaulted hex, but they do contribute their firepower to the defender’s attack strength.
First determine the number of successes on the black attack dice. As with close-range attacks, every “4,” “5,” and “6” result is considered a success. Then subtract the number of successes on the red defense dice (for which “5” and “6” results are successes). The remainder is the attacker’s total number of hits. Remember this number.
- The defender now rolls a number of black attack dice equal to his attack strength, scoring a success on every “4,” “5,” and “6” result. This is the number of hits that the defender will inflict upon the attacker. Remember this number.
- Assault attacks are considered normal, rather than suppressive, attacks. After damage has been determined on both sides, the attacking player must remove a number of figures from the active squad equal to the defender’s damage number. If the active squad is eliminated, any remaining casualties must be taken from the other participating attacking units (if any).
- Then the defender must remove a number of figures from the defending units equal to the number of hits inflicted by the attacker. The defender may choose these casualties from any combination of the defending units.
Light Vehicles and Assault Damage: The defender may assign a number of hits against any defending light vehicle, but no more hits may be assigned to a light vehicle than what is needed to destroy that vehicle (see page 28 for how combat hits from a normal attack are applied to vehicles, and how vehicles take damage).
- If the defender’s number of hits equals or exceeds that of the attacker, the assault is unsuccessful. The active unit and any supporting units are fatigued, and the Assault action is over.
- If the attacker’s number of hits exceeds that of the defender, the assault is successful, and the defender must now retreat from the hex.
The defender must choose a single adjacent hex that all the surviving defending units must retreat to. Defending units may not retreat into a hex containing enemy units, or retreat off the game board. If the defending units retreat into a hex containing friendly units, so that the stacking limit is exceeded, the retreating player must immediately destroy any excess units from the retreating units, so that the number of units in the retreat hex conforms to the legal stacking limit. If there are no eligible hexes for retreat, then all the defending units are destroyed. Disrupted units can never retreat, and are immediately destroyed if forced to do so. A pinned unit that is forced to retreat immediately becomes disrupted after retreating. Any fresh unit or unit in Op Fire mode that is forced to retreat becomes fatigued.
A retreat is not considered normal movement, and the defender is not subject to opportunity fire when retreating.
- After the defender has vacated the hex, the active unit and any units that supported the attack may advance into the vacated hex. However, supporting units that were fatigued at the start of the attack may not advance into the hex. Neither the active unit nor any of the supporting units are required to advance into the assaulted hex.
The advance is not considered normal movement, and the advancing units are not subject to opportunity fire when advancing.
- Both the active unit and any supporting units become fatigued (regardless of whether they advanced or not).
In the example above, the American player activates squad A with an Assault action.
- The active squad A moves one hex north to be adjacent to hex B, which contains a German squad (in an entrenchment) and a German halftrack vehicle.
- The American player declares an assault against hex B, with the 2 American squads in hex C supporting with combined fire (even the fatigued unit is allowed to support an adjacent assault attack). The active unit adds its full firepower, while the supporting units add half their firepower.
- The American player rolls his attack dice, as well as two cover dice (representing the single entrenchment), scoring a total of 5 hits. Then the German player rolls his attack dice for the defending squad and the half-track in hex B, scoring 2 hits.
- Applying the hits against him, the American player removes 2 figures from the active squad, after which the German player applies 4 hits to the half-track (destroying it) and applies the remaining hit to his squad, removing 1 figure.
- Since the attacking players scored the most hits, the defending player must retreat. The German player retreats to hex D, with the American player choosing to advance his active unit into the now-vacant assaulted hex.
See detailed FAQs here: Assaults.