The last two weeks have seen Soviet forces fighting their way across Norway, our first game was 10,000pts worth of Soviet attacking 5,000pts of Norwegians in a hasty defensive position. This game whilst fun was a little too big to work through in an evening, but to be honest my opponents Soviets were stalled by the mixture of minefields and the longer range fire of my M48's and NM116's, the last straw being the FASCAM being dropped on one of his tank battalions.
The second game was the same antagonists but slightly lower points 8,000 vs 4,000. This time my opponent chose his own army instead of me doing both as there had been complaints in the first game that the army was rubbish and I had for some reason created an army designed to lose. The justification for this accusation was the lower command levels of the Russian HQ's and the shorter range of the MBT's guns. These accusations should not be taken too seriously as they are part of the normal games table banter.
If I had to be subjective about the forces except for the lower command levels of the HQ's my list at least provided Engineers to breach the minefields, enough infantry to fight through built up areas and smoke for the artillery to cover the advance.
The picture shows a view across the battlefield looking from the Norwegian right flank. On the far right of the picture are the bulk of the Russian troops, two BMP1 battalions and a T72 battalion, another BMP1 battalion is closer to the centre behind the village centre right and nearest camera a T64 battalion. On the Norwegian side NM116's with Recce and FAO cover the gap in the minefield. The village further back in the centre and the wood beyond are held by conscript infantry bravely awaiting the Russian onslaught. Things didn't work out so well for the Norwegians on their right flank with the NM116's attempting to do a little shoot and scoot but failing their command roll so after a round of rather ineffective fire at the T64's found themselves exposed on the hill and well within the T64's effective range, things weren't pretty after that with the superior armour of the Russians soaking up the fire and the NM116's dying bravely protecting Norwegian soil.
The major Russian effort was weighted towards the Norwegians left flank with two infantry and one tank battalion driving forward at a fairly sedate pace. The Soviet commander had decided to keep his units rolling forward together and rather than letting some of his formations race off when the command dice were favourable he didn't. This led to units moving generally only once per turn and whilst it presented a formidable force it would have had a serious effect on the game turn limit.
Norwegian infantry deployed in an industrial unit with NM135's lurking behind in the hope of offering at least some support. There is another group of industrial unit to the top of the picture again occupied by infantry.
The Russian hordes lurking in wood land before their mad dash towards the Norwegian defence line, unluckily for them the Norwegian FAO had managed to drop a FASCAM barrage on the far end of the line slowing up the Russian advance. The Russian commander choosing to creep forward out of the mine field at 4cm a time. This really stalled the Russian attack.
The centre village with Norwegian conscript infantry nervously awaiting the Red Horde which luckily for them never arrived and apart from watching the T64's slaughtering the NM116's on the hill to their right never even saw a Russian.
The hero of the day on the Norwegian side was undoubtedly the M48 battalion who managed to do a little bit of long range sniping on a BMP battalion moving from cover to the crest of the hill popping off a couple of rounds before retiring out of sight until their next turn. They also managed to hold up the T64 battalion after they had dispatched the NM116's by firing at maximum range causing enough suppressed units to slow them down. As usual we found ourselves running out of time but the slow Russian advance would have left them struggling to take the objectives before the game time limit in any case.
Another enjoyable game with lessons learned don't try and take on Russian MBT's with NM116's unless its at maximum range or it will all end in tears. Don't buy flock from the model shop if the lightings a bit dim, you could end up with the shocking green that adorns some of the M48 and NM135 stands.