|Those are tanks, not wheeled vehicles! I know, keep reading.|
As the commander of the Spanish forces' advance guard, my mission is to engage the Russians and keep our avenue of advance clear of enemy forces.
As I approach my forces into the tiny town, I am reminded about the proper use of tanks and mechanized infantry. One thing that remains mostly true is that combat in built-up areas is dangerous for tanks and should be left to the infantry. There are passages about this in Panzer Tactics: German Small-Unit Armor Tactics in World War II (by W. Schneider) and if I remember correctly also in Truppenführung: German Army Manual for Unit Command in World War II (edited by B. Condell). Both sources tell that assaulting built up areas is an infantry mission (the tanks just support).
One great example of the above is the German attack on Wilkowischen (Lithuania, 09Aug1944).
Which brings us to my mission. I will not use the tanks to assault the town and I will bring up my infantry for that. But because I have my infantry in light Piranha IIIH vehicles I need to make sure that there are no nasty BMP-3s or tanks within the town. Yeah, the reconnaissance has been lousy. C'est la guerre! Wait, wrong language ... Así es la guerra!
So the opening move is to lead with the tanks. I move them forward to find out where the Russian armor is.
|First right into the town, then as distance closes I start moving my tanks towards the flank of the town. They can see a lot of infantry in the town, but are ordered not to engage those forces. We are on an armor-hunting mission.|
|Well, the Russians are not making too much effort on hiding inside that building. This the view from the thermal sight of a Leo 2A gunner. The range is 1,500 meters. More than enough to keep the tank safe from hand-held antitank weapons.|
|One BMP-3 tries to get away from the town. It is quickly taken care of by the tanks' main guns.|
|While taking care for threats in the town, there is incoming fire from the distance. A Russian T-80U manages to score a couple of hits on one Leo 2E tank. After three hits from my tanks' sabot rounds, the T-80 is completely destroyed.|
|An in-game AAR view of the fatal round on the Russian T-80 tank.|
|While my two tanks continue their flanking move, a second BMP-3 shows the tiniest corner of hull. It was hiding behind a building.|
|At this range, it was a done deal. First immobilized, then completely destroyed. This is an in-game AAR view of the first hit.|
|Right across that dense tree line, my tanks complete their move into the flank of the town. The last BMP-3 is caught from the rear and his turret goes airborne ...|
|Now it is the turn of the infantry to assault the village. The Piranha IIIHs move forward, with their MGs blazing fire into the enemy in the town.|
|At 900 meters or so from the town, far enough to avoid hand-held AT rockets but close enough for our MGs to be effective, the dreadful moment of disembarking my troops.|
|All the Piranha IIIHs are delivering suppressive fire into the buildings. Many ENY infantry teams are killed by the incoming MG fire. The movement forward is slow, but I don't see my men suffering casualties so far.|
|When my infantry teams reach the far side of the town, the mission is complete.|
- Engaged and destroyed enemy armor with my tanks
- Assaulted the town with infantry, eliminating a whole Russian platoon
- I got a Piranha IIIH too close to the town and it got mauled really bad. To make matters worse, the infantry was still mounted on it.