N/D – Merry Christmas Mr Lawrence
The Axis fails to win the initiative and elect not to reroll. Allies go first and roll a 7! Snow in both the Artic and Temp but good news for Japan who now have fine weather in the N Monsoon and are set up to assault the Nationalist front line in Southern China. Allied 1st impulse, the CW takes its mandatory first impulse Naval and sends its Conv Escorts out to sea to protect their charges – all sea-lanes have a CA or two in the 4 box and await the German U-Boats. The Home fleet sails into the N Sea to provide SB if the German threatens the BEF. France takes a land and sends its reinforcements to the front line, making sure that Paris is as ‘big’ as it can be, the Paris airfields are stripped of FTRs as there are now two German Arty adjacent to the city and they do not want to be GS. Russia shuffles a few units in Iraq and Iran and rails a Siberian to Murmansk. China awaits the Japanese assault in S China relying on poor GS and attack dice rolling to save their day.
Axis 1st impulse – With winter snows (-4) Germany takes a Comb and sails its U-Boats, their fail their searches in the bad weather but the RN escorts in the Faroes Gap find and sink the Netherlands boat as it breaches the surface and fails its 2 x D result – first ‘kill’ to the escorts, but it’s a long war and the U-Boats are being built by the German dockyards at the expense of surface fleet – Donitz is a happy man. Italy takes its habitual ‘no cost Comb’ and sails a sub. Japan takes a Comb and ships more land and air reinforcements into China. GS are poor and there are no attacks as they position themselves for the next impulses assault. EOT marker advances by 2.
Allied 2nd Impulse. Weather is 8, same, same as the last impulse Snow again. The allies relax as the CW takes a ‘no cost’ Comb to conserve oil. There is movement in Egypt as land units advances along the northern coast as it is getting crowded in the Egyptian cities. France takes a Land to adjust his units on the front line. Russia and China take similar actions as the first impulse. The EOT marker advances by 2 – Axis can now end the turn on a 1.
Axis 2nd Impulse and Germany takes a Land. The German guns outside Paris fire against the city and adjacent BEF stack with only 1 Brit 6.6 MECH inverted, GS against the BEF stack on the coast are surprising as the German rolls double 1’s, Gort and his escorting 6.4 Mot in Rouen are both inverted – offsetting the winter minuses. Emboldened by the inversions and with few French inverted the German’s launch a risky plus 5.3 attack against the BEF in Rouen. A German 6 factor HE Ftr is shot down for no loss. The wily British declared a blitz and the die roll of 14 produces a 19 causing one loss to the Germans (1.4 28Jgr Div) but they take the city and in doing so unhinge the BEF line. Gort, inverted is retreated - alone to the minor port of Le Havre, and the 6.4 Mot, in another direction over the Seine River as the Germans occupy Rouen celebrating a startling winter success. The German guns outside Paris are reinverted as well as a Stuka – just in case the weather improves. Italy takes a no cost Comb and sails the Cosseria DIV on the CA Abruzzi into the E Med’s 4 box – invasion training Exercise?
In the Far East, Japan takes a Land and launch their assault against the ‘point’ Mountain hex which is holding their advance. In another startling piece of good luck – unseen so far – the Japanese roll triple 1’s, the whole Chinese stack of 3 units is inverted for a +5, plus odds – it’s on! Led by Yamamoto (+2) they assault the mountain defenders and roll a perfect TOTT destroying two defenders and retreating the DIV. Finally a great result for the Japanese as this dislocates the Chinese line and frees up one of the Chinese resources for shipment back to Japan. The German rolls a 9, no EOT and it advances by 2, EOT now 3.
Allied 3rd Impulse - Weather roll is a 4 +1 (5) storm in the Artic and rain in the temp – the BEF outside Paris, is on the wrong side of the river Seine and will almost certainly be the next target of interest for the German as they slug their way to Paris. If they can clear them from their flank guard position, the German will have three hexes on Paris and baring a poor dice roll should be able to take Paris. The Allies consider a pass but elect to move. The CW takes a no cost combined to conserve France, with another snow weather roll and their front line intact takes a Naval to assist with Allied Conv escort and starts to send their CA’s to Africa – just in case Paris is captured and a Vichy Government is installed. Russia juggles its garrisons in Iran and Iraq, sending units that can to the German border. In the South, China retreats its line, and a communist unit enters Cheng Tu to liberate the city from Nationalist influence, as its Workers disbands itself in disgust. EOT roll, … and there it is again! The CW rolls a 2 to end the turn – that is three two impulse, bad weather turns for the Axis at a critical time Any clear weather roll, or possibly even rain could have seen Paris fall. Even the Allies are feeling a little empathy towards the Axis for their unlucky string of short, bad weather turns – but only a little.
Partisan roll is a 6, no partisans turn up as they sensibly stay at home. US entry again, little interest from the US Senate as they suggest that now, with multiple chits in the tension pool – gearing up is their priority. Doubling the US build is an important step on their road to war and aiding the Allies. Reinforcements and annual (41) force pool additions. With the short turns Germany now has a staggering 21 points of stored oil, ready for the 1941 campaigning season – they just want some clear weather and a few turns longer than 2 impulses!
1941 A NEW YEAR
J/F 1941 – SNOW, SNOW, SNOW – The Germans are not singing.
The Axis (German) wins the Initiative roll and elects to go first. Germany rolls the first weather roll for 1941 – and yes, it is snow again. Germany takes a Land and shells the BEF outside Paris, and the French in Paris and sends land bombers on a speculative mission to GS the industrial city of Metz. Only one unit is inverted in the BEF stack and none in Paris. However, the French stack (9 points) in Metz is successfully inverted and it becomes the focus of the German Heer. A handy 14.7 assault led by Guderian is successful with an 11 rolled for a TOTT result. The two French 4.1 GAR are eliminated and their Div retreats to Strasburg recounting tales of woe. No loss and no inversions for the German and the loss of Metz will now drop France’s production as they lose the cities production, which the German will gain as it is a red factory with a resource - nice. GEN Gort HQ trapped in Le Havre is ignored, and very relieved, as the German assess an attack from one hex (Rouen) in winter, against the single unit supported by British air and Royal Navy SB was not worth any lost units. Italy, no DOW and an oh so familiar no cost Comb. Japan, with another fine in S China, takes a Land and assaults and takes the Chinese city of Kweiyang but the victorious troops are ill-disciplined, and the US gains a chit – Japan rolled a 1. The pressure is building against the Chinese front line as each hex taken often forces their units to retreat to straighten their line. EOT, advance by 3.
Allied 1st Impulse – CW takes its mandatory Naval and sends its Conv Escorts out to sea to protect the essential oil and resources entering the UK. Force Z sails into the N Sea to deter Kriegsmarine intervention and support the BEF. Gort, trapped in La Havre is picked up by a Tpt from Portsmouth and returns back to Blighty, escaping the attention from patrolling U-boats in the N Sea. The early EOT roll from N/D and the snow in J/F has allowed him to get away from certain destruction by the German Army in Rouen. Wavell’s trip to Egypt is short lived as he is shipped back to Gibraltar after delivering the N African Campaign plans to Cairo. An air transport reinverts a Tpt. France adjusts its front line as several new units arrive to bolster the defenders. Two new Ftrs arrive to take up the fight in the air which has been costly to France. Russia is in the process of swapping out its units from Iraq with low grade GAR and Cav to garrison the newly acquired countries and rails another unit to the German border. China takes a no cost land and under the cover of snow, retreats its front-line units into the mountains. Cheng Tu is now fully indoctrinated and is now a second city for the Communists. EOT, advance by 3, the Allies will be able to roll an EOT on their next impulse on a 3, or a 5 if they all pass!
End of the Session with the German rolling another 5 for more snow in the Temp. Axis 2nd impulse in two weeks’ time as the Italian/Japanese player is away.
· EOT – End of Turn
· BP - Build Point
· TOTT – Top of the table a 23 or more
· LOC – Line of Communications
· NCC - No Cost Combined – no oil used
· USE - US Entry
EOT Losses N/D 1941
Western Europe and France celebrates a white Christmas - an unexpected result.
The BEF is considering - Do I stay or Do I go?
CW units advance to the border on famil exercises
The border build up
The Far East
The perfect GS roll by the Japanese
The Chinese line in the South under pressure
CW escorts finally sink a U-boat after a year plus of war
Losses so far for 1941 - the Metz Garrison is eliminated
And because I don't normally copy in the comments that appear with the Facebook post. A little weather analysis from Mike who does these great reports for the Facebook World in Flames Group.