Well, I was planning to do a little gaming at the Gamer's Inn this Friday evening, but plans went south and so Robert Bolan and I elected to simple meet at my place and play some Combat Commander: Europe. Since Robert lost our last game I let him decide if we should replay the 2nd scenario (Hedgerows and Handgrenades) or move on. He choose to replay the scenario as well as to reprise the Germans. Well, this time around, the result was the same - The American forces smashed through and forced the German surrender after extracting a good number of casualties. Robert managed to take out my mortar very early on, but I surrounded and isolated a couple of his Germans, weakening him as I advanced. After the defeat, we decided to play another game. This time, he choose to move on to the third scenario - Bonfire of the NKVD.
Outside Brest-Litovsk, June 24, 1941 - A Soviet forward command post belonging to the retreating 133rd Infantry Regiment is to be abandoned by noon, but not before all communications equipment is smashed and documents burned - including detailed plans of much of the frontier fortifications in and around Brest-Litovsk several miles to the east. A battered company of Russian militia must halt the German juggernaut long enough to affect a withdrawal to the relative safety of the Brest-Litovsk citadel.
Basically, the Russians (Robert) are defending the map. The objective on the far side of the map is worth a whopping 16 victory points - the Russians also start with 20! In order to win, the Germans will need to smash most of the Russian army and/or take the major objective before time runs out. To make matters worse, Robert gets to setup first - including a dozen wire obstacles in the way. He uses these to funnel me away from the forest (and cover) and towards a couple of houses he's setup in with machine gun units. This turns out to be a mistake. As the first turn taker, the Germans immediately overwhelm and eliminate 3-4 Russian units. They chase down and kill another couple while making a lightning fast push up the Russian left flank. Robert has to pull his troops back together and tries to regroup. I've got a couple of good positions, so I hole-up and start firing on his units. I'm now within a couple units of forcing a surrender. I figured this was my best plan of attack, as not a single German unit has been killed. Then Robert gets lucky - reinforcements. First artillery, then a new squad. I have one unit pinned down and am relentless in shooting at it, but can't ever even break it. The Russian artillery is becoming annoying, but not seriously damaging, so I regroup and re-position some troops to try and apply more pressure. The Germans finally break a couple of Russian units and then immediately rout them off the board to force the Russian surrender. This is an important lesson - when the Russians break, they are often hard to recover and easy to rout by the Germans. Without leaders, the Russians are just too easy to push back.