Siege of Tobruk – Joe’s Recap

Starting off the Bolt Action tournaments for the New Year, I traveled to Golden Rhino Games in Ypsilanti, MI. The store had recently undergone a large-scale renovation and you could tell. It was beautiful and spacious. The event was three rounds, 1,000pts and 14 Order Dice cap with a Generic Reinforced Platoon. With my freshly finished French army, I took to the battlefield, readied my Berthier rifle and got to work!

The Army

French Reinforced Platoon
Officer
Second Lt – Reg – 50
x1 Buddy – 10
60pts
Infantry
Infantry Section – Reg – 12 men – 120
x1 LMG – 20
x1 Pistol – (3)
137pts
Infantry Section – Reg – 12 men – 120
x1 LMG – 20
x1 Pistol – (3)
137pts
Infantry Section – Reg – 12 men – 120
x1 LMG – 20
x1 Pistol – (3)
137pts
Infantry Section – Reg – 7 men – 7070pts
Officer Cadet Machine Gun Team – Inexp – 33
Relic of the Great War
33pts
Anti-Tank Rifle Team – Reg – 3030pts
Artillery
Med. Artillery – Reg – 0
Spotter -10
10pts
Med. Artillery – Reg – 75
Spotter -10
85pts
Armored Cars
Early-War Motorcycle with Sidecar – Reg – 35
LMG
Recce
Turn on the Spot
35pts
Early-War Motorcycle with Sidecar – Reg – 35
LMG
Recce
Turn on the Spot
35pts
Early-War Motorcycle with Sidecar – Reg – 35
LMG
Recce
Turn on the Spot
35pts
Tanks
Char 2C – Reg – 190
Turret-mounted Light Howitzer
Forward-facing MMG
Turret-mounted MMG
Ball-mount MMG
Ball-mount MMG
Slow
Armor 9
190pts
Total – 13 Order Dice994pts

Game One
Early Morning Patrol vs. Dragi (US Army Airborne)

Dragi’s Sherman 76mm making a mad dash up the middle!

The mission was a straightforward kill points with extra points for close combat and Officer kills. No Outflank. Dragi was running a US Army Platoon with a Vet Paratrooper squad to bolster its numbers. He also had an HMG, Sherman 76mm, Inexp Mortar, Vet Lieutenant, Bazooka and a Sniper to round out his force.


Highlights from the game:

– Turn 1: With visibility cut to 12″, Turn 1 saw each side running onto the board and jockeying for position.
– Turn 2: A French squad killed a US HMG after a Motorcycle kill one of the HMG crew. French Medium Howitzer hit and killed five Reg US troops who then failed their Morale Check and fled. Dragi’s Sherman 76mm returned the favor and killed six Frenchmen who also failed their Morale Check. After two turns the score was 2-1 for the French!
– Turn 3: Char 2c killed four US troops, but they hold their ground.
– Turn 4: French Infantry on the left flank kill the Bazooka assistant and the Team failed another Morale Check causing the Bazooka-man to flee in panic. The Char 2c killed another four men from the weakened US squad who then, also failed to hold their nerve and fled.
– Turn 5: French Motorcycle rolled up and killed the Inexperienced Mortar, and by the end of the Turn, the Sherman 76 had 8 Pins on it!
– Turn 6: Char 2c Pinned out the Sherman 76 with another Light Howitzer hit. A six-man French squad killed two men from a weakened US Infantry squad, causing a Morale Check and, sadly they failed and fled.

Dragi was a courteous opponent and took his poor Morale Checks in good stride. This was a pretty straight-forward mission and the lack of scatter terrain on the table (an unfortunate theme of the day with this event) really was to my advantage with my multiple French artillery pieces.

Result -Win
8 kills to 1

Game Two
Pilot Rescue! vs. Nick (USMC)

Nicks USMC in Game 3

Game Two was a slightly modified version of Kittyhawk Down. Four quadrants with an Objective in the center, and at the top of Turn 4 a pilot would crash and needed to be rescued. Outflanking was allowed. The pilot was worth 2 VP, all the other Objectives worth 1 VP, you only had to win by 1 VP.

Unfortunately, this table we were on was sad.  A large hill/ruin in the middle that was line of sight blocking, then six pieces of painted foam evenly distributed between the two sides long table edges. There was no cover in the middle of the table, no scatter terrain to hop to. Just essentially two large killing fields and that was it. We both set up the best we could and then hoped the dice would be on our side!

Nick opted to put a Jeep with a Vet Bazooka and a Truck with an eight-man Vet Engineer Squad with a Flamethrower in Reserve. I chose to put all three of my Motorcycles in Outflank. One on the right, two on the left.

Highlights from the game:

The only thing of note for the first three turns as both sides jockeyed for position was a hit on the Char 2c on Turn 1 with from Nick’s Medium Howitzer. It penned and caught the massive beast on fire. The mighty land battleship failed the subsequent Moral Check and the crew bailed.

Before Turn 4 started the pilot landed near the top right objective. At this point we each controlled the two Objectives on our long edges, but Nick was threatening my left Objective and roasted my troops threatening his left. All my Motorcycles failed to appear on Turn 4 while all of his Reserves came on with ease! Bad luck on my part!

Top of Turn 5, the Motorcycles on the left arrived and moved within 6” of Nick’s Howitzer but only killed two crew. My left flank held and Nick’s left was either pinned down or failing advances. The Motorcycle on the right came in and pinned down the US Engineer Squad.

On Turn 6 my left side squad survived a howitzer shot, and the Motorcycles killed the Howitzer and contested two Objectives! One moved up and contested the US right. Nick charged my left with his Lt but fell short of close combat, but was within 3” to contest the Objective. And finally the third Motorcycle on the right ran up behind the Engineers, to contest the Objective on Nick’s left forcing his Truck to flee due to my unit being closer than his.

This game (we both agreed) was stressful due to the lack of any real terrain to play on. But a game coming down to the last few dice on the last turn is, in my opinion, the most fun and how all games should be. I had squeaked out the win with one Objective controlled and three contested. Overall 2-0! Heading into game three, I was sitting pretty at two wins and 14 Order Dice killed. I felt good and was happy with how I was playing and how my list was performing, especially when it had almost no playtesting.

Result – Win
1 Objective Controlled to 0

Game Three
Seize the Supplies! vs. Chris (Winter Germans)

Germans battling it out in the desert

The mission had three Objectives in a line in the middle of the table (again, no scatter terrain and only a couple of ruins). Scoring was 1 VP each round you held an objective and an extra VP for destroying a vehicle.

Chris. Oh Chris. I thought we were friends. Friends aren’t supposed to do bad things to each other… Chris and I had been AdeptiCon partners this past year and had played countless games together or vs each other since. Contrary to any game Andrew and I play, which is always close, Chris and I just blow each other out. I guess this game was my turn.

Highlights from the game:

I knew I was in trouble when Chris’ girlfriend Savina was going to roll for him, she basically only rolls 6s, and I wish I was exaggerating. Things went from bad on Turn 1 (when he sniped one of my Motorcycles and then killed another by the end of Turn 2). To worse when Chris’ Forward Artillery Observer landed on Turn 3. The artillery strike hit and wiped out one of my Howitzers, crippled two of my squads and almost got my Lieutenant! Then the German Cavalry charged and wiped out the remnants of the French squad on my left. The game was basically over at this point. My left flank was nonexistent and I couldn’t hit the broadside of the Great Wall of China. But I soldiered on, determined to try and salvage the game.

But my poor luck continued. Chris was able to nab my Lieutenant with his Calvary, and I missed another two Howitzer shots (one from the Med. Howitzer and the other from the Char 2c), and my ATR hadn’t made contact all game. My squad on the center Objective was wiped out by a fanatical Panzergrenadier assault. The dice kept on laughing at me by losing the combat by just a single kill. At the end of the game I finally hit with a Medium Howitzer (the only time all game) and obliterated the Fanatics in the church that had just wiped out my Frenchmen. But it was way too little too late.

Even though it was a rough game for me from the get go. It was good to see Chris and Savina again. We were able to catch up a bit during the game and have some good laughs and a ton of fun.

Result – Loss
2 VP – 6 VP

Final Thoughts

I ended the day 2-1 and with a respectable 15 Order Dice killed across the tournament. This was my first time at Golden Rhino Games, and it didn’t disappoint! It is a beautiful store with a large amount of Bolt Action in stock and a great gaming space. The staff was friendly and helpful and were extremely accommodating for us. Shout out to Jackson for TOing the tournament. He ran a great event and I would definitely come back!

2 thoughts on “Siege of Tobruk – Joe’s Recap

  1. Sorry about the terrain, Joe – GRG’s bread and butter has been 40k / sci fi for some time, so I did my best preparing the terrain with the tools I had to keep things roughly historical. You are right though – I think a few wheat fields / forests would be worthwhile additions to the store terrain pool.

    Glad you had fun and I look forward to seeing you at the next one!

    Like

  2. All good Jackson! I didn’t mean to slam you or the store at all. You ran a great event and I’m definitely looking forward to the doubles event you hinted at!

    Like

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