Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Assault on Coastal Battery 338 : Operation Sealion

Amongst the painting and preparation for Albanich we managed to squeeze a game in at the weekend. With the helpful advice of Simon I have now purchased a copy of We Shall Fight Them by Ian Lofting a really excellent book on Operation Sealion full of detail about the Allied defence positions. A very good book for those looking at planning a Sealion campaign, although a few of the reviews say some the detail may be slightly dodgy. I have put a picture at the bottom of this post. Anyway I have only scratched the surface.......

With the newly completed gun emplacements we were able to set up an attack on Coastal Battery 338 one of the two situated close to Folkestone. With two 6" Guns the Germans have identified this as a key early morning objective if they wish to secure Folkestone Harbour. Clearly a task for Fallschirmjager from the 19th Paratroop Regiment. From a "time line" perspective we have moved back slightly to the early morning of S-day. The Fallschirmjager have been dropped by glider with the clear instruction to take the gun Battery to the East of Folkestone, destroy the guns and then move into the town to take a second Battery at East Cliff. (In real life the Battery's didn't quite look like these being more of the concrete block type but these will have to wait for another day).

Early morning on S day the DFS 230 Glider leading the advance unit of Fallschirmjager has reached its target breaching the perimeter fence. The first squad has set off at the run whilst a mortar is being set up to cover their advance.
Other glider troops have landed close to the road which runs around the promontory of Copt Point. They are making their way under the cover of darkness towards the two 6" gun battery's and the observation pillbox overlooking the cliffs. 
To represent the surprise nature of the landing the allies are not permitted to react or bring troops onto the battlefield until a specified time, as befits this 'coup de main' type attack the Germans are travelling very light with only Mortar and machine gun support
Finally the alarm is raised and the first British squad fall out of bed only to be hit by a hail of bullets from the rapidly advancing Fallschirmjager 
With the alarm raised the British can now mobilise their defensive force, infantry supported by medium arms, but nothing heavy, they have immediately called for reserves from the Folkestone garrison but it is not clear when they will arrive.
The Defenders come under heavy fire so try to get under cover, the question is can they hold the attackers back long enough ?
Luckily the Germans don't get it all their own way and the leading Fallschirmjager unit suffers a Fubar mis communication sending them backwards in the wrong direction towards the gate πŸ™‚
Finally reserves start to arrive, a Home guard reserve unit arrives at the gate by truck, dismounting and attacking the paratroopers from behind......they don't like it up them apparently !
The defenders are also heartened to see a Bren Gun Carrier arrive along the road, whilst this immediately comes under fire from the German mortars, they are able to start firing their Bren guns into the enemy, at least the Germans know they won't get away lightly.
But the Germans are single minded in their resolve, they are paratroopers and used to being surrounded so they take no heed of the reserves on the road and push on. Their objective is the guns which must be knocked out to protect the troops landing in Sandgate and other seaborne troops looking to take Folkestone Harbour, Germans can be seen in the distance assaulting the far gun emplacement, knocking it out!
But what is this another twist.......the unlucky Germans suffer a second Fubar on the same unit causing them to run again, either communication is breaking down or they are not as tough as we thought...😬
The Home guard, looking to defend their homeland have wiped out the MG 34 machine gun, but have no obvious way to advance up to the guns without being cut down and they may already be too late.
The Germans at this northern side have also knocked out a machine gun which had them pinned down and are just about to take out the second gun, the remaining allies are concentrating around the observation pilllbox, intent on holding it to the last man
Smoke rising in the distance makes it clear where the guns have been destroyed, the Home guard can only look on from a distance.
The final shot of the battle, the British outgunned have dug in in the rough ground but have been forced away from the final objective which is now also burning, the Germans have paid a high price, but that was to be expected by High Command and the invasion planners. The key thing is the guns can no longer attack the german navy crossing the channel or defend Folkestone Harbour from attack from the sea. The remnants of the Fallschirmjager will now have to regroup and push on down the coast to the second Folkestone West battery. Once this in knocked out they are to move on the Harbour to link up with the assault squad there.

A really fun game, started thinking the Germans were really up against it but they used just the right amount of aggression to get to the guns, after all what are a few lives at this stage when the main invasion force is landing on the beaches nearby...πŸ˜€

Here is a copy of the new book I got recommended for Sealion fans.

22 comments:

  1. Those plucky chaps in the Home Guard aren't making it easy for the Fallschirmjager! Great stuff!

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    1. They certainly did their best but probably needed to arrive a bit earlier to really impact on the result.

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  2. Excellent stuff again, tickety-boo.

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  3. Those paras really are hard. Cracking battle, always best when it's a close run thing

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    1. Cheers Martin suspect they may be landing on Saturday as well πŸ˜€

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  4. Another thrilling instalment Matt, I am really enjoying this.

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    1. Thanks all this positive feedback does help motivate me to continue the campaign and weave in more variations, even if at the core is having a reasonably sized battle which can be played through in a friendly non competitive atmosphere πŸ˜€

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  5. Nice reading and wonderful terrain and figures...Superb!

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  6. Awesome game Matt! Looks wonderful too.

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  7. Sausage-day rolls onward! Though I think its a bit much of DFS to supply the Boche with gliders for their invasion, and now they've got the cheek to invade our television sets with their beds and sofas commercials 70 years on.

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    1. Thanks Roy I hadn't spotted the link, but then I very rarely if ever watch TV....too much fun to have gaming πŸ˜€

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  8. Excellent game Matt, love the black n white photos, the book is good, regardless of the reviews, and too be truthful ive not even noticed what they pointed out. Its certainly a keeper and needs to be read, plus its given me a few ideas for when i finally!!!! get round to sorting my games room out.

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    1. Yep one of the best books I have for detailed campaign planning so thanks to you πŸ˜€ I plan if I ever get the chance to transfer the data from the book into a map format which I think would be even more helpful. Yes you need the room sorted. I still have a lot of undeveloped ideas for games to come πŸ™‚

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    2. Im thinking of doing a map as well, i may try something this weekend,will let you know, im not sure if i have your email address Matt?

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    3. You'll definitely get to it before me then. Email is thecrumps007@btinternet.com πŸ˜€ Let me know how you get on

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  9. These Hun need a good slap if you ask me, getting too big for there boots!

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    1. I am starting to agree they seem to have had a pretty good run recently....you have also given me the idea to run a little tally on the results. The Hun are definitely ahead, but then it is still S day and the campaign wouldn't get far if the first day all wine t to the allies πŸ™‚

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  10. Lovely! Good to see great figures and terrain in an entertaining AAR.
    Having not played these rules are the FUBAR events part of activation or morale? Either way it's good to have rules where units don't all do exactly what the players want every time...

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    1. Sorry for delay hadn't spotted your comment. The Fubar in bolt action is activated when you attempt an order roll and roll up a double 6. We also have a special event chart which is homemade, this adds even more variety πŸ˜€

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