For the afternoon game I switched the table about a bit, reducing the built up area and adding a river complete with a bridge on one side. This is the view from the west.
I also changed the sides a lot. For this game the West Germans would be attacking with a Panzergrenadier company in Marders supported by a platoon of Leopard 2s with the aim of grabbing the bridge. The defending Soviet force consisted of 2 motor rifle platoons in BTR60PBs, the company support platoon and a weakened platoon of 2 T64Bs. The view from the east:
One German platoon advanced quickly towards the wood and ran into point-blank range fire from a Soviet platoon that destroyed all 3 Marders and inflicted heavy losses on the panzergrenadiers as they struggled out of the stricken IFVs.
The other motor rifle platoon was deployed in buildings to guard the Soviet right flank. Seeing the ambush of the panzergrenadier platoon, they rushed out of the town in a counter-attack. The Soviet army considered defence to be a temporary measure before the offensive was resumed; good to see players getting into the spirit of it!
The bulk of the German force was pushed towards the right, advancing behind a smokescreen.
The survivors of the ambushed panzergrenadier platoon were caught between the infantry firing from the wood and the counter-attacking motor platoon on their left. Casualties and shock put them out of the fight.
The motor rifles pressed forward.
As the contents of blinds were revealed, the two sides were found to have their tanks separated by a smokescreen.
The second T64 drove round the other side of the supermarket to support the counter-attacking motor rifles.
It didn't look much better for the first T64 from his side.
The motor rifles reached the wood bordering the road.......
The Leopards picked out the T64 with their thermal imaging and knock it out.
The third panzergrenadier platoon pressed forward and reached the river.
These were better tactics than the first platoon used with Marders held back to provide fire support.
A couple of Milans were fired by Marders at the T64 but missed - the range was too short for effective guidance. The T64 responded by accounting for one of the Marders. A Leopard rounded the corner of the supermarket and ran into a 125mm fin-stabilised round.
The motor rifles pushed through the trees......
....and a major fight developed in the car park that eventually involved both motor rifle platoons, a panzergrenadier platoon and the Germany company HQ. It was carnage.
The Soviet support platoon opened fire with Spigot anti-tank missiles at the Leopards but failed to score a hit. One Leopard surged forward, over the bridge and into the minimum range of the Spigots.
This was a fantastic game to umpire. Unfortunately the pictures don't capture the mayhem around the supermarket, partly because I was enjoying it so much I forgot to take more. The Germans took the bridge as required, but it was at a high cost with just 2 tanks and 4 IFVs left.