Counter Attack at Salerno
Pictures of the Game
The 13th September 1943 was the Allies darkest day on the Salerno beach head. The US infantry was thinly stretched along the front and the Germans had just received fresh reinforcements. They unleashed an attack on the weak US lines and pushed for the sea.
The game represents the attack of the newly arrived 16 Panzer Division on the 1st Battalion 157th Infantry Regiment and the 2nd Battalion 143rd Infantry Regiment. The Germans have orders to Capture Persano then push through to the sea splitting apart the US 45th and 36th Infantry Divisions. Can the Americans stop the onslaught?
Map and Order of Battle
2nd Battalion 143rd Infantry Regiment is deployed in the area indicated by the red dashed line. All elements are dug in (-3 cover)
1st battalion 157th Infantry Regiment is deployed in the area indicated by the red dashed line. It has recently moved in to position so is NOT dug in
191st Tank Battalion is a reinforcement. It will enter the board anywhere between points F & H. It will arrive turn 2 on a 6(d6), turn 3 on a 4-6 and automatically turn 4 if it has yet to arrive
All artillery is off table. Battery B, 27th Armoured Field Artillery is a reinforcement and can be called turn 8 onwards
The majority of Kampfgruppe Kleine-Limburg enters the table turn 1 between points A and B
The majority of Kampfgruppe Doering enters the table turn 1 between points D and E
The Aufklärungs and Kradschützen Züg Stab 2 Panzer Regiment enter the table at the earliest turn 2. Roll d6 they enter on a 6. Turn 3 this increases to a 4-6 on turn 4 they automatically arrive. Roll for each stand separately. They both enter any place between point A and H.
I Abteilung, 71 Panzer Grenadier Regiment enters the table turn three any point between C and D
The Wespe starts off table but may enter it on any turn after turn 4. It may not fire as artillery the turn before it enters. It can enter anywhere between points A and B
No reinforcement can arrive within12" and LOS of an un-demoralised enemy stand. If entry is impossible, the reinforcements can enter a turn later up to 12" from their indicated entry location. If entry is still impossible move 12" further away every turn until entry is possible. Germans may never enter south of points H and E. The US troops may not enter north of points A and Q
|191st Tank Battalion||2/3/4 on a d6: 6/4/all||F&H|
|Aufklärungs Züg Stab 2 Panzer Regiment||2/3/4 on a d6: 6/4/all||A&H|
|Kradschützen Züg Stab 2 Panzer Regiment||2/3/4 on a d6: 6/4/all||A&H|
|I Abteilung, 71 Panzer Grenadier Regiment||3||C&D|
|Battery B, 27th Armoured Field Artillery||8||off table|
The table is 8ft x 5ft at 1" =50m. North is towards the top of the page
The terrain represents the river valleys of the Sele and Calore rivers with the high ground between. The west of the map is the start of the coastal plain
The red lines are the roads.
The blue lines represent rivers, both are reasonably wide and shallow with thick vegetation along the banks. It requires a whole full advance move for any personnel or tracked vehicle stand to cross. Wheeled vehicles and man-handled guns may not cross. Although the banks of the Sele are shown as tree lines the tree line is many trees thick. Personnel stands may move along the banks and be considered in light cover. Vehicles may not move lengthways along the wooded banks and must leave the trees to move adjacent
The bridge marked "blown bridge" is exactly that
The light green areas is are open woods. No impediment to personnel, half speed for vehicles and man-handled guns. Light cover (-1 vs non HE)
The grey areas are BUA. Persano is two 4"x4" areas and the Tobacco Factory one 4x4 area. The farms are 2"x2" areas that can contain but a single personnel stand or Class I/II towed gun. All BUA are stone (-3 cover). The Tobacco Factory is hollow (ie a ring of buildings) the centre square inch is open terrain and provides no elevation
The green dotted lines are tree lines, these provide light cover (-1 vs non HE) and break LOS
The brown dashed lines are ridgelines. They break LOS. Any AFV touching one gets hull down bonus (-2). The double dotted line between the rivers is higher than the surrounding terrain. Any stand touching can see over any terrain that's further than 6" from the ridge. They may fire over any stands over 6" from the ridge. They may not fire or see over Persano.
The double grey line represents the edge of the coastal plain. This area is mostly open fields. For the most part their are no field boundaries. However there are the remains of some hedges and tree lines scattered about. Randomly place some pieces of hedge up to 6" long to the west of the line. Ensure all the pieces are over 6" apart. The hedges provide light cover (-1 vs non HE) and break LOS
The broken pink lines are not terrain but indicate deployment areas
Although there are no ground attack missions available to either side the US artillery spotter planes were active during the day. Each turn roll 1d6. On a 3-6 the US player gets an L4 with an FO in it. If the roll was 3-4 then the spotter is from the 36th Division and spots for the 131st and the 155th, if its 5-6 then the L4 is from the 45th division and spots for the 158th and the 189th artillery battalions
In either case a single battery of either battalion can be called on a 1-7. Either battalion can be called on a 1-5 and both battalions can be called on a 1-3
Game starts at 15:00. The last turn is the 21:00 turn so the game lasts 14 turns. The last turn will be twilight and visibility will be 10".
Weather and visibility is good
The US forces on the board are pretty much the last US forces before the Germans reach the beach. Behind them is the artillery line of the 36th division and beyond that the beach itself.
If German tanks leave the board between points G and Q they will eventually reach the US gun line. This will force the artillery to fight the tanks and not fire in support of the infantry
The artillery the Germans will reach are the 131st and 155th Battalions. One tank will silence (i.e. stop firing) the 131st, two tanks both the 131st and 155th
It will take a couple of turns to reach the guns, so if the tanks leave turn 6, for example, the guns will be unable to fire in support of the table turn 8
The Germans must have a commander with the tanks who can order them. Count the time until the guns are silence from when the commander leaves the table. The Recce Pz-IV or SdKfz-222 can order themselves
There are three victory conditions for the Germans
If the Germans get 1 & 2 and achieve 3 by the end of turn 9 they get a decisive victory
If the Germans get 1 & 2 and achieve 3 by the end the game they get a marginal victory
If the Germans only achieve two conditions it is a draw.
If the Germans achieve only one condition the game is a marginal US victory
If the Germans fail to achieve any of their victory conditions its a US victory
To hold Persano or the Factory the Germans must have a stand no worse than pinned in the area at the end of the game and the US must have no undemoralised stands within.
Pictures of the Game