I was a believer that defeat in tactical combat is always due to the cumulative effect of several small, apparently irrelevant failures ...
The game: Combat Mission Shock Force-US Marines Module
The Scenario: Circle the Wagons, by George McEwan
SITREP: A two tank section is bogged down in the middle of an insurgent-controlled town. One platoon of US Marines is on site and will protect the tanks until reinforcements arrive.
The star symbol is the position where the tank section is stranded. I moved one Plt. of Marines forward and I am trying to position them inside buildings, in a wide arch (blue line) located forward from the tank. A long time ago I played this scenario and deployed the Marines in an arch behind the tank section (dotted blue line). This was a mistake; infantry-tank cooperation in these situations needs the infantry ahead of the tank. For the most part, the Marines near the tanks are doing a great job. Now another Plt. has arrived (blue icons in the far background). Just in time, the insurgents are getting really nasty.
The plan is to have the reinforcement Plt to move into the town and move downtown in an axis perpendicular to the position of the Marines near the tanks.
The reinforcement Plt. moves its AAVs through the open using standard bounding overwatch technique. Lots of suppressive fire, these AAVs are surely thin skinned and I don't want to loose any of them to a lucky RPG shot. As planned the AAVs stop short of the town and the Marines disembark under the cover of smoke. The Marines occupy a narrow ditch and orient towards the town. After a few minutes, they move forward to take a foothold on the town. More suppressive fire. Things are going well, but an insurgent team appears on the left flank and draws the attention of everybody.
In the foreground, an AAV and a two Marine fire teams take aim at an insurgent team that suddenly appeared on the left flank. Another Marine fire team moves forward into the town. In the far background, a mob of insurgents crosses the street towards the immobile tank section. A full Marine squad is in a building at mid-distance between the AAV and the insurgents, but they don't have an angle to shoot at them.
I counted the insurgents that crossed the street to feed the carnage downtown. 25 of them. If this AAV would have been aiming in the right direction, this battle would have ended in an early victory.