After the fast paced first battle, a little bit of team shuffling was in order
to allow participants to battle different people and vehicles. Furthermore,
since both the UN vehicle and Navarone Gun were out of commission because
it was decided that the game would be "Defend the Town", which would put
all artillery and supply vehicles with the team currently defending the
town. The following teams were formed:
- The Enablers
John Pittelli (Comet), Steve Tyng (Cromwell), Paul Pittelli (KV-1),
Chris Wacker (T34)
- Tough Love
Will Montgomery (SU-100), Frank Pittelli (Tiger), Joe Sommer (Hetzer)
- Both Sides
Marty Hayes (Flak 88), Andy Snyder (Goer), Ken Kelly (Goer)
Each team would be given 30 minutes to attack the town, defended by the
other team. The defenders were required to have at least one tank in
the town limits (as denoted by four orange cones) at all times. If all
tanks were destroyed or outside the limits, the game would immediately
end and the attacking team would be awarded 5,000 points.
Team Tough Love would begin defending the town. With just three tanks,
this would be a tough assignment, requiring a high level of team
coordination. The SU-100 was chosen to occupy the town as much as
possible, with the Tiger and Hetzer in supporting roles, attacking
and defending as needed. With only a single house and four barricades it
was decided that some re-construction was in order. Tough Love placed
the four barricades in a tight circle which included the house, with three
very narrow (just wider than a tank) gaps. The Flak 88 was placed just behind
the barricades to cover two of the openings.
The battle began with the SU-100 in town, outside the barricades, and the
Tiger nestled inside the barricades. The Hetzer was outside the town limits,
covering the left flank and the artillery soldiers. As the battle began,
The Enablers moved quickly toward the town and took up positions covering
the front and sides. One of The Enablers (I think it was the KV-1) decided
to try a frontal assault on the enclosure and moved towards the front opening.
The Tiger kept darting in and out of the right side opening (which was angled
to provide protection) as the intruder approached. Eventually, the attacker pushed
into the enclosed area and the Tiger backed out.
For a short period of time, The Enablers looked at each other in amazement, assuming
that they just won the battle because the enclosed area was vacant. However, they
soon realized that the SU-100 and Tiger were still inside of the actual town limits
(as defined by the 4 orange cones) and the battle had only just begun. Quickly,
Tough Love started assaulting the attacker who was now caught in the middle of the
trap. Unable to quickly retreat through the narrow opening and with shots coming from
multiple directions through the side and back openings, the attacker was destroyed.
For just a little while, Tough Love rejoiced.
A proper defense of the town depends on well-stocked artillery, which
depends on lots of supply runs. With the SU-100 and Tiger focused
on defending the town, the defense of
the supply vehicle would lie squarely on the shoulders of Joe Sommer
and his Hetzer. Of course, that meant fending off the constant
attacks from the speedy Cromwell. Fortunately, the Hetzer speed is
comparable to that of the Cromwell and there was good coordination
between the supply vehicle operators and Joe.
As the Cromwell approached, the Goer would be sent back to homebase,
in a cat and mouse game, while the Hetzer engaged the Cromwell.
On a couple of occassions, the Tiger would dart out of the town
to hurl a few shells at the Cromwell to further frustrate him.
Such tactics worked well overall, with the Goer making a total
of 8 runs, while being destroyed only twice. The constant
supply of ammo to the Flak 88 allowed it to anchor the town
defense, unleashing horrific volleys at close range when
tanks moved in or around the enclosure.
With only a few minutes remaining in the first 30 minute sortie, The Enablers
came very close to completing their mission. By concentrating their firepower,
the Enablers were able to pick off the Tiger, sending it back to home base
with only a few minutes to go. With the Hetzer also being re-incarnated,
only the SU-100 stood between The Enablers and victory. Accordingly,
they threw all caution to the wind and attacked with everything they
had. As Frank watched from home base, it looked like it was all over,
with the SU-100 spinning like a top to avoid hits. The Tiger raced
out of home base towards the town, but it looked like it would be too late.
But, as the dust settled the outcome was not as expected. The SU-100
had successfully avoided being hit 4 times and the attackers either ran
out of ammo or were destroyed by the Flak 88. With about a minute
left, the Tiger pulled into town to support the SU-100, but The Enablers
were not able to mount another attack before the sortie expired.
A Different Approach
As The Enablers prepared to defend the town, they decided on a different
arrangement of the barricades. Instead of creating an enclosed area,
they formed them in large horseshoe which was completely open on their side
of the field. The Flak 88 would be deployed behind the barricade, just inside
the town limits, to guard both flanks. With only three tanks on the
attacking side, this would be a difficult configuration to attack.
As the battle began, the members of Tough Love started their assault
by driving straight up the middle of the field. With The Enablers
nestled behind the wall, the attackers could use the wall to
shield their approach as well. With both sides camped out on either
side of the wall, the Tough Love tanks began probing the wall looking
for gaps wide enough to fire through. No suitable gaps were found,
so they started attacking both sides of the wall.
The overall strategy of team Tough Love was to push on both sides
of the enclosure, squeezing The Enablers into the middle. If they
could get tanks on both sides, they could get The Enablers in a
cross-fire as they hunkered down for defense. Of course, this
is easier said than done. The Enablers had the KV-1 patrolling behind the
wall, with the Comet and Cromwell attacking the attackers whenever they
tried to come around the sides. (The T34 had mechanical problems
and had to withdraw from the battle.)
A Lucky Break
With both sides losing tanks throughout the battle, there were numerous
opportunities for 2-on-1 engagements, although the
Flak 88 was always present to help the defender. At one point, however,
the Comet was returning to home base, just as all three Tough Love tanks
were advancing on the town. The KV-1 was secure behind the wall and the
Cromwell was lurking about. Nonetheless, this was the time to pounce
and Tough Love threw everything at the town. With the Hetzer and SU-100
going around one side, the KV-1 and Flak 88 were force to focus on them.
In the meantime, the Cromwell and Tiger tangled on the other side.
With three hits on the Cromwell, Steve knew that he had to be careful,
so he placed the Cromwell behind the wall as well, with his gun
trained on the edge of the wall. If the Tiger came around the corner,
it would be destroyed in short order.
So, the stage was set. The KV-1 and Flak 88 were facing left, holding the
SU-100 and Hetzer at bay, while the Cromwell was facing right, holding the
Tiger at bay. As the Comet was about ready to re-enter the war, something
had to give. Knowing the Cromwell's speed, Frank kept a close eye on it as
he edged closer to the corner. Although he could be engaged and destroyed
at any time by both the Cromwell and Flak 88, he decided to swing "out",
not "around" the corner, and put himself in a position to shoot at the KV-1,
not the Cromwell. With a clear shoot at the exposed rear of the KV-1, the Tiger
fired quickly and destroyed the KV-1. That allowed the Hetzer and SU-100 to charge
in from their side and get a clear shot at the exposed side of the Cromwell.
With a single shot fired at the Cromwell, while the Comet raced to reach the town,
the sortie was over and team Tough Love earned themselves 5,000 bonus points.