Wednesday 12 October 2022

Drive to the Sea!

 Drive to the Sea

April 1938

 The Rebel offensive which began at Belchite on March 10th continues a pace, the government forces have no answer to the Rebels overwhelming air support and artillery. The entire front has shattered and the Rebels are now trying to drive south to the sea and split Catalonia and Valencia!

 As columns spread out south towards the Mediterranean, one such column meets up with the enemy!

Italian orders

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:

Turn 1

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

Note I`ll need to reuse some Italian figures as I`m about 2 platoons short.

Infantry company

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!

Republican Forces

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!

 On table

1st Militia Company of Battalione Rameirez

Can be dug in – rifle pits, trenches


2 platoons

AT rifle team

50mm mortar team

 6 turns later

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

 6 turns later

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

 6 turns later

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.

Bi-plane fighter which will strafe targets of opportunity

My table

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 2 the Italian 1st platoon is surprised and takes a couple of casualties, they immediately dismount and engage their enemy.
Turn 3 The Italian 1st platoon continues to engage the militia but take several more casualties including a 50mm hit, the Lancia IZM moves forward to support them, 2nd platoon moves off road swinging far left away from the ambush sites. The company HQ dismounts in the cover of a low rise behind where 1st platoon is battling.

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

Italian company commander`s ride

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!

It spots the vehicles on the road and dives and machine guns the armoured truck of the Assault Guard, setting it on fire and wiping out half the platoon!

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.


  1. Wow! That's quite a detailed and complex report. The 'piecemeal' arrival is interesting and challenging process. It got me thinking how could I stage this as a game!! I look forward to part 2. Great to see your tabletop terrain and figures in action. Lot of work gone into your photo report. Carl

    1. That is very kind, thanks for taking the time to make a comment. It takes heck of a lot of effort and time to write-up and edit/organise the photos. It is a little demorolizing that noone comments - hey ho :)

  2. This is a great looking table, which h reminds me I should dig out my own SCW stuff sometime and also I need to finally get my own CTV painted up.

    Well done.


    1. Thank you, like all my stuff basic but functional :) The CTV makes an interesting change from Legionnaires and Moors, though I really need to get some Penninsula Regular Army types for these later actions.

  3. Excellent AAR. I really like this period of history.

    1. SCW gets a bit nasty once the tide turns against the Rebublic, but you can have quite interesting most infantry based games which can be challeging.

  4. Always nice to see some SCW stuff in action - thanks for sharing. Looking forward to see your continental army, after all they were numerically the nost common troops. Regards, Pat

    1. Cheers Pat, that maybe my next project I`ll have to research who has the most useful figures in 20mm. If the idea grabs me this may be my major project for 2023.

    2. I think you'll choose between Minairons, Irregular, or BUM plastic if you can get them. You might want to add Minairons heads (metal, available separately) with Isabelino cap or Trubia helmet onto plastic figures such as HäT WW1 Australians, Austrians, French, or even the old WW2 Airfix Commandos! The challenge is to find the regulation trousers tight around the lower leg and more baggy above. Regards, Pat

    3. I decided to build my battalion around a core of figures by Irregular Minatures (just so cheap in comparison to Minairons). I also have some Airfix WW1 French (the Republicans seem to have had a big supply of Adrian helmets) and half a packet of BUM Spanish Foreign Legion. This should allow me to build the basic infantry, add a couple of wheeled Maxims (also Irregular), some mortars and anti-tank guns (I have some in the bits box and can scratch up crews) and maybe a couple of 20mm AA guns and that give me a good starting point at least.

  5. Great looking Kit as always and interesting AAR.

    1. Very kind, Italians made a nice change with their cute little tankettes :)