The Warsaw Pact Forces began the opening day of the war by trying to take the North Hamburg area with hopes of pushing into South Hamburg as we. The DDR 9th Panzer was one of the leading forces in the attack and it ran smack dab into an Irish Guards battlegroup. I had chosen the static defense option and we rolled Breakthrough. Three full strength infantry platoons were deployed initially, along with a 4 stand strong dismounted Milan section, 4 Rapiers and a troop of 3 Chieftan tanks were in ambush. Reserves were comprised of 3 more Chieftans, 4 Abbots, 4 mortar tracks, 4 Milan Compact Turrets, 4 Scorpions and 2 Blowpipes. A FOO was also present. A small town was directly in the middle of the board with small hills on the edges. One infantry platoon was deployed dug in in each corner and one was in the town. The Milan platoon and Rapiers went in one corner, the Rapiers behind an infantry platoon defended hill and the milans were on the other side helping to cover the objectives. The DDR force had three fromations in it, 2 tank and 1 mech. The tanks were both T55's supported by T72's. There was a medium size BMP 2 platoon and a small BMP 1 platoon with an AGS 17. Support consisted of 8 ZSU-23-4, 4 Hinds with a small air assault element and 6 Su-25. Three T55 and the BMP 1's were left off in the flank attack.
The battle began with an air assault near the undefended objectives and a general push towards the middle of the board. The Frogfeet made their first appearance and due to the lack tasty targets ( and 4 rapiers ) opted to strafe 5 Fv432 on the opposite side of the board from the Rapiers and destroy them. All of the DDR infantry was dismounted as they pushed towards the town. The Germans had advanced cautiously and left the British with few shooting opportunities but an unlucky T55 formation commander was taken out along with 2 landed Hinds. One infantry team was also killed in the ensuing explosion. As the attack unfolded the infantry platoon in one corner began to redeploy to reinforce the one in the town. The Germans entered the town and began a prolonged battle with a really stubborn British inf platoon. During the course of the entire game this one platoon held up their advance. The Charlie G's really helped in blasting infantry out of buildings. The German small arms just weren't up to the task of rooting out the well protected enemy infantry. The ZSU's rolled up to try and help out but were slowly whittled down. The British reserves came in consistently on turn 2 and kept coming on. The Abbots came first to help pin the infantry assault. The ambush Chieftans didn't feel the need to make an appearance until turn 3 and the Germans kept trying to push through the town. The tanks tried to stay back until this happened but finally had to be committed on a different route. Unfortunately for the German armor the Chieftans proved both elusive and impenetrable. Once the T72s and BMP 2's had been lost to the Chieftans, along with the help of a blitzing MCT platoon, the German attack began to falter.
Turn 5 had the first flank attack unit appear, the BMP 1's and their dismounted troops. The troops moved into a wooded area to try and hold an objective while the BMP's moved out to try and engage something. Turn 6 had the 3 T55 appear and move to support the infantry, who may have left their shovels on the BMP's. Turn 6 also had the Frogfeet show back up from a prolonged rearming and go for a Chieftan troop. The Hinds went for the Rapier. Tons of aamg fire did not deter the Hinds but a Rapier took out one. The last one blew up a Rapier leaving 3 to shoot at the SU-25's. Nine shots, eight hits and six fails saw three Su-25's shot down. One Chieftan was bailed and a sigh of relief could be heard from the British. The flanking BMP's were finished off, as were the the three T55. Mortars had been hammering the infantry trying to hold the objective and more direct fire guns came in to play as well.
Turn 7 saw the DDR forces withdrawal from the field. While a resounding success, the British were unable to follow up and push into East Germany.
The British lost two units of transports, a Rapier, a Scorpion and probably half a platoons worth of infantry. The DDR losses amounted to about 75% of their total force. The infantry in the town were the ones who disrupted the entire assault. This, and some really crappy reserve and air roles really hurt the assault.