Drive to the Sea
You command a column form the Italian CTV (Corpo Truppe Volontarie) the leading elements of the Littorio Division. Your orders are to advance in an attempt to cut the supply lines to the town of Morella, over-coming all resistance from "The Reds".
Italian order of battle
Now the Italian advance is pretty piece meal and units arrive on table as and when they do:
Recce company with:
Motorcycle coy HQ Inc MMG section
2 motorcycle platoons
Armoured car platoon
4 turns later
Infantry coy HQ
2 platoons in trucks
AT section (65mm field gun)
4 turns later
1 infantry platoon in truck
Tank company with:
3 x CV33, 1 x CV33 w/flamethrower
6 turns later
Towed 75mm howitzer
2 infantry platoons in trucks
4 turns later
Infantry Coy HQ
1 platoon in truck
Mortar platoon in truck
MMG platoon in truck
4 turns later
HQ + 3 platoons all in trucks
Battalion command HQ
Off table support
Henschel 123 Bomber
Can be called twice after turn 3 then takes D3 turns to arrive then will bomb target of choice! Then takes 4 turns to rearm/refuel before it can be called again.
Me109 fighter strike
As above except the first call can`t happen until turn 6!
Elements of V Corps under the command of Juan 'Modesto' Guilloto León, initial orders are to hold at all cost other elements of your battalione are being rushed to your aid, long live the Republic!
1st Militia Company of Battalione Rameirez
Can be dug in – rifle pits, trenches
AT rifle team
50mm mortar team
Assault Guard unit
Bilbao armoured car
AG Platoon in armoured truck
Infantry platoon in truck (3rd platoon of 1st Militia Company)
Truck immediately withdraws and returns to collect elements of 2nd Company
2nd Militia Company of Battalione Rameirez
HQ (inc a 80mm mortar plus crew) + 3 platoons motorised in various trucks/vans
Trucks immediately withdraw and return to collect 3rd company
Battalion HQ inc Vickers MMG team
2 platoons of 3rd Militia Company Battalione Ramierz
Towed 14lbr field gun
Trucks immediately withdraw and return to collect further reinforcments
6 turns later
Remains of 3rd Militia Company of Battalione Ramierez
HQ + 3rd platoon
FA1 armoured car
Off table support
Only available once the Battalion HQ and its radio/telephone is on table! Takes 1D3 turns to arrive.
The initial Republican dispositions were a whole platoon on the left side of the road, half including their LMG forward behind the field wall the rest in reserve around the ruined farmhouse. This platoon was also supported by the 50mm mortar team. Across the road to their right was half of the other platoon dug-in among the grapevines, the AT rifle squad was in an ambush position behind the vineyard. The rest of the platoon plus the company HQ occupied the other farm.
Turn 1. The Italian motorcycle troops arrive on table
Turn 4 1st Platoons morale breaks after two turns of casualties, leaving the IZM alone firing its machine guns at the militia, the company CO moves to stop the route. 2nd platoon on the left continue their flanking move.
Turn 5 The Italian Company CO stops his 1st platoon from withdrawing with a good command roll, 2nd platoon reach a position from where they can advance on foot to flank the ambush.
The militia platoon have been hammered by the IZMs machine guns and withdraw, the 50mm keeps lobbing bombs to little effect
Turn 6 the next wave of Italians arrive on the road and bad news for the Republicans so does a Henschel 123
On the Italian left their 2nd platoon is engaged by the militia dug-in among the grape vines. On the right the Company CO reorganizes his HQ and the remains of 1st platoon and starts them forward.
The Henschel starts its reign of terror by dropping a few bombs around the ruined farm, causing a couple of casualties among the Militia reserve! They have already seen their withdrawing mates being cut down by the IZMs machine guns so need a morale check!!
Thankfully for the Republic their first reinforcements arrive on the table
Turn 7 The Henschel spots the convoy and dives into the attack, the lead vehicle is the Bilboa A/C which fires on the incoming bi-plane. Both sides score hits, both sides result in the destruction of the other, the plane spins into the ground and the armoured car bursts into flame!
Back at the ruined farm the militia are forced by a bad morale roll to withdraw. On the other side of the road the Italian 2nd motorcycle platoon wipes out the militia among the vines.
The 1st Italian motor-infantry company begins to de-bus and move forward, the IZM waits for them to catch up worried about another ambush.
Turn 8 The Assault Guard and militia continue to drive towards the battle. The Italians are making a general advance right across the width of the table, the remaining militia await their arrival (except what`s left of 1st platoon which is running away).
Turn 9 sees yet more Italians arrive and even more bad news for the Republic as a BF109 zooms over the battlefield looking for targets!
The Italians continue their general advance
Turn 10 the survivors of the Assault Guard make their morale check so just continue advancing towards the farm and the battle. Where the remaining militia are now engaged with the Italians, they can also see Italian tanks approaching!!
The IZM moves forward supported by infantry, but the militia AT rifle team takes it out with a superb shot!
The BF109 circles around and attacks the last truck on the road, the militia have already de-bussed but are still in the kill zone of its MGs and it rolls excellent effect dice wiping out 50% of them and destroying the truck too!!
Turn 11 the survivors of the air attack fail their morale and flee!
The Assault Guard meet up with the withdrawing militia and “convince” them to return to the fray.
At the farm the militia are taking casualties only the stone walls save them from more serious loses. They do manage to break the morale of one of the attacking Italian platoons who go to ground in the ruined farm.
Turn 12 the fighting at the farm continues, the Assault Guard now reinforced with militia move up in support.
And thankfully for the Republic the next reinforcements have arrived
Turn 13 the Italians push forward against the remaining defenders of the farm, who thanks to the strong walls inflict nasty casualties whilst taking few themselves. But the Italian armour is approaching fast!
The mixed group of Assault Guards and militia arrive at the lower farm gate, exchanging shots with Italians advancing down the road.
Turn 14 The battle for the farm intensifies, the Italians move their CV3 flame-thrower forward.
On the road intense accurate fire from the Assault Guard and militia halts the Italian infantry, they wait for armoured support.
The first unit of the Republican reinforcements (the company HQ) arrives at the edge of the farm
Turn 15 Unfortunately for the Republic more Italians arrive on the table plus yet another Henschel 123
The CV3 flame-thrower burns out the defenders of the farm wall
But now some of the Assault Guard have moved to help defend the farm causing more casualties among the attacking Italian infantry causing a morale check. Also another platoon from the second company arrives by truck.
They find themselves facing advancing Italian armour
Turn 16 the Henschel attacks and bombs the advancing militia platoon causing heavy casualties! Which require a morale check!
Another platoon from the militia second company arrives and de-busses to join the defence.
The Italian armour begins to push down the road
Turn 17 the bombed platoon`s morale cracks and they flee
This doesn`t save them as the CV3s on the road machine gun them as they run wiping them out!
The last platoon of the 2nd militia company arrives at the farm and de-busses.
Italian reinforcements arrive at the ruined farm.
The battle for the farm has become a slugfest, with various Italian platoons against odds`n sods militia and Assault Guards.
Turn 18 the Italian armour supported by infantry move to outflank the farm, frankly the militia have little to stop them.
In the farm the defenders move into the farm buildings to hold off the Italians.
The Henschel circles around and machine guns a truck on the road destroying it.
At this point the Militia commander throwing more bodies into a hopeless battle would be pointless. So I have decided to change the table moving the terrain south allowing the militia commander to set up another defensive position to continue the battle. Part 2 to follow.