Thursday, May 7, 2015

Thinking of Becoming a Paratrooper? - Combat Mission Market Garden AAR

... You better be a gifted tactician because firepower may not be an asset you can count for most of the battles.

Men from the 1st Platoon, B Company, 504 Parachute Infantry Regiment move towards the Heumen Bridge.
Excellent stock scenario from Combat Mission Market Garden module. This scenario is about the fight of B Company around the Heumen Bridge. By the way, I wrote a Command Ops blog entry about this Regiment a few weeks back.

Spoilers alert.

Let's go through some of the relevant moments of the fight.

This aerial recon photo is from Lost at Nijmegen, by R.G. Poulussen.

A poorly executed movement to contact results in all the LMGs prematurely deployed. Too far away from the target, the effect of suppression is barely enough to pull fellow All Americans from danger.

The elevated terrain around the canal provides a covered approach for the scouts of B Platoon.

When the rest of the B Platoon joins the fight, the range is too high to affect the entrenched Germans.

One light mortar appears to do the suppression trick. Another platoon moves towards the bridge for a protracted assault. 

The assault on the bridge is completed, not without a good share of own blood spilled. 

No matter how effective I thought the suppression was, the cries of the All Americans wounded at the bridge tell me that there is no substitute for a close assault. In this image, the B platoon closes in towards a stone house which is the center of resistance of the Germans.

This victory was not cheap.

The stone building was housing HMGs, which proved to be very effective during all the fight.

As early as a few minutes into the scenario, right when the scouts made it so close to the bridge, I thought that I made it. Under the impression that I was engaging the depth of the enemy position, there was seemingly little between my men and victory. The finding of those trenches near the stone house made my heart sink. The enemy position was oriented towards the bridge accesses, not parallel to the canal.

Short on firepower, I inchwormed towards the muzzles of the Germans for that final assault that came in not late to accomplish the mission, but too spoiled in casualties.



Johan said...

Good post. I just realized that I don't own this module, so I may have to get it.

Even though you of course have to use your vehicles in a tactically competent way too, they are, as you wrote, more about the firepower, and less about tactical finesse than the infantry. I've always enjoyed the pure infantry fights in Combat Mission.

JC said...

Hi Johan,

Thanks for your comment. I strongly recommend this module if infantry is your thing. The content is outstanding but brief (makes you wish for more, there is always the editor).