Monday, 10 July 2017

Engagement at Kovyagi : Operation Rumyantsev 1943

Our third battle in this mini campaign sees the 1st Guards Tank Brigade under Vladimir M Gorelov being counterattacked by the 1SS 3rd Panzer Regiment under Edwin Meiderdress. The Battle which took place on the 11 th August 1943 saw vicious fighting in the town of Kovyagi.

The Russian advance under Katukov had fought its way across the River Merchyk. Not surprisingly with tank vs tank battles in the town it was a tough battle. Only lasting the day the town was then bypassed by further Russian tank units looking to drive deep into german held territory.

As usual I have not been strict with order of battle looking to create a game which has some balance. This was the first run out for the new base maps and the first time we had attempted a more substantial town battle. It was extremely tough to make any progress in the built up area and both commanders were crying out for infantry support. But none came ! We learnt lots and I am hoping at some stage to try more....roll on Stalingrad ๐Ÿ˜ฑ

Anyway on to the action
A shot looking West of the town of Kovyagi early morning the railway still open !

Russian tanks of the 1st Gurads Tank Brigade charge into the town from the north
The Germans surge forward to counter attack leading the way Panthers and PzIV's of the 1SS Panzer Regiment 3 
Heading into town the leading German column
Overview of the town at this early stage. A few technical notes, we were using Blitzkrieg Commander, we identified the roads in the town as cover and the built up blocks as hard cover. The whole was subject to a minus 1 on orders. All this meant it was going to be difficult without any infantry to get control. The railway line just counted as a road. The objective for both sides was the central station which is the red building in the centre of the town.
Line of sight was quite difficult in the town so units are forced to get up really close before opening fire
The Russian bring on a powerful assault gun unit of SU76 's and SU152's these look to outflank the town to the east
Another aerial shot of the town from the SW more Germans Panzers deploying in the rubble
The last train escapes west......this was of no play value it just look fun....๐Ÿ˜€
I took a couple of these shots....again just for fun. It shows the Russians have crossed the railway line in the centre and have control of the station
The outflanking movement attempts to push into the town from the east, a single panther dug into the rubble looks to hold them back
Period shot of the Germans closing in on the area around the church
Germans tanks have broken onto the railway smokes is starting to plume into the sky
All pretty confused at this stage. We had plenty of amusing command failures, the Russians still have the station and have broken in form the flank but the Germans are closing into the area around the church
The Battle became a challenging game of cat and mouse with tanks shooting at point blank range, due to the excellent cover it was still hard for anybody to get the upper hand. It was great fun but we recognised we were unlikely to get any sort of result so at this stage we reduced all the cover by one, working on the basis that after a couple of hours of battle they had now got the range of the enemy.
More black plumes of smoke rise into the sky
This was the point the battle ended.....the Russians have clearly got control of the east of the town but are making slow progress,
The Germans have managed eventually by concentrating fire captured the railway station
Final shot of the town at the end, this was the first run out with the new mats and happy with the effect
Another shot of the town as the Germans pull back. The railway is cut. Historically the Russian 49th Tank Brigade and 17th Tank Regiment slipped past the Totenkopf reconnaissance screen threatening to break right through the German front. The Battle continued the following day the 12th August with the Germans now reinforced by the Wiking Division attempting to push the Russians back over the river Merchyk...........

20 comments:

  1. Nifty looking game and layout. I like your expedient of dropping cover by one level to get the game moving again. I will try to remember that one!

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    1. It was a very tough battle and suspect if we hadn't the game might still have been going on Sunday morning. The benefit of playing for fun ๐Ÿ˜€

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  2. Very interesting battle. Mat looks great

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  3. Replies
    1. Thank Michael shows what is possible in 6 mm ๐Ÿ˜€

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  4. This table is awesome Matt, what a splendid game!

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    1. Thanks Phil it was tough for both sides the Germans just getting the better of it.

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  5. A fine looking set to, it has a very eastern front feel. Your new mat looks just the ticket too.

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    1. The mat is very Eastern steppe especially when the town is out the way ๐Ÿ˜€

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  6. Looks great, like the train, your new mat looks the business in this scale, very nice.
    Best Iain

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    1. Thanks Iain...the train is Heroic and Ros but really is just there for fluff.....it sometimes plays as an objective for air missions but that is another game altogether.��

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    2. No idea where those symbols came from it was a smile ๐Ÿ™‚

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  7. Replies
    1. Thanks Gordon..... nearly fits into a shoebox too !

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  8. Impressive table! Very interesting report with very nice pictures.

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    1. Thanks for your kind comments Stefan.......it was also a really tough battle for both sides ๐Ÿ˜€

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  9. Nice stuff! Must've been like fighting in a telephone box for those tanks.

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