We ended up not playing World War 2 as several people were unable to make our Friday night game. Instead, we played a scenario I am working on for Nasiriyah. The USMC forces are entering the outskirts of the city and get hit while trying to secure the area. It is a variation of the Ambush Alley Sweep and Clear mission. Starting forces for the USMC were:
3 Humvees with .50s each containing 3-4 riflemen
1 AAVP with a full USMC squad (13 men in three fire teams)
The USMC mission was to move from one end of the board down the other, securing at least 3 hot spots.
The Marines elected to lead with the three Hummer’s, followed by the AAVP. The Fedayeen were deployed less to ambush the main column and more to defend the hot spots along the board edges, hoping the Marines would come to them.
The luck of battle seemed to be on the Marines side from the start, as the lead two Humvee’s came under repeated RPG fire and shrugged off hit after hit.
And then the luck ran out. The lead Hummer got a mobility hit, then an armament hit and the crew bailed out into the adjacent building, only to be mowed down by an incredible roll from a nearby Fedayeen position.
At this point, USMC tactics appeared to go out the window. The other two Hummers broke off down a side street, taking fire. They bailed out into an adjacent building, taking another casualty. One of the Hummers carried a Marine sniper team, who set up and prepared to defend the building while the casualty was evacuated. Meanwhile the AAVP went down the same side street in the opposite direction, firing grenades and .50 caliber rounds at anything that moved.
The Fedayeen smelled victory and acted accordingly to defeat the Marines in detail. Many brave Fedayeen were gunned down in their attempts to stop the AAVP, but their efforts were successful. The AAVP took a 1/2 mobility hit, then a 1/2 firepower hit, then ground to a halt in front of the warehouse building which became another USMC Alamo. As the Marines bailed out, the Fedayeen took the opportunity to storm the two buildings where the Hummer crews had taken refuge. Despite their attempt to take prisoners, all were killed, including the sniper team who were only able to kill a single RPG gunner. Meanwhile, at the Alamo, the Marines were giving as good as they got, but time was running out. They inflicted heavy casualties on the Fedayeen, but they took another casualty and noticed that they were surrounded on three sides, with no functioning transportation and only a few inches from where they started. The Marine commander decided to withdraw and try again another day.
There were quite a few reminders for the USMC players for next time. First, their use of overwatch was not good initially and the Fedayeen took advantage of their lapse. Second, they split their forces and were defeated in detail. Third, Hummers are not tanks and despite the temptation to use the .50 cals, they should have dismounted immediately when they started taking fire. As a result, the Fedayeen were able to smash the USMC. Final tally were seven dead, two wounded, two wrecked Hummers and one abandoned, with one wrecked AAVP. There were tons of Fedayeen casualties, but no hot spots were neutralized and the USMC player withdrew.
For the actual scenario (now that we have this playtest under our belt), we are scaling it upwards for a larger board. I have six AAVPs in progress, along with Hummers in the correct colors for early Iraqi Freedom. We will make the main street much wider, with a concrete berm running down the middle.