Command Ops: Burning Metal Day 2 AAR

Burning Metal is a fictional scenario created by Ranger X3X.  You can download it here.

To read my AAR for the first day click here.


Situation:  I've made a tactical decision to try my luck with the bulk of my division moving along the highway into Ede in the northern half of the battlefield. Thanks to the speed of my division on the highway the German left flank is quickly turned and I am driving on the Reehorst objective.  In a massive blunder, I leave my right flank exposed and pull my guard away from the northern rim of the map (the likely direction of German reinforcements) in an all-out effort to seize Reehorst.  An hour later, a German regiment of armor and motorized infantry attack from that direction and split my forces in Ede in two.

Day 2:

The fighting in Ede has been raging through the night. The 2nd Grenadier regiment has effectively split my forces.  Driving the remnants of the 82nd recon battalion and the 41st into a suburb of Ede in the southwest corner of the city.  Two armor battalions are fighting to reach them across the city around the infantry barracks.

German forces have split my force in Ede in two.  I still hold a slight lifeline along the railway to the east.
While the fight in Ede rages on, my forces in the south have moved against the Bennekom objective.

I send a recon unit forward hoping to find Wageningen lightly guarded.
As my focus shifts away from Ede to the south, a German counterattack aimed at my division command post near Langenberg is turned back.

This was the first of two unexpected attacks in the northern sector of the battlefield.  Vital assets were tied down safeguarding against future attacks.

The second attack came even further east.  I had to cancel an artillery barrage targeted against German positions in Ede and redirect my batteries to take care of this threat while other units moved into position to prevent further attacks.

The fight for Bennekom becomes more than a probe.  A new battalion prepares to join the battle as four batteries of my division's artillery move into place to begin bombardment.
My initial plan called for Reehorst to fall and then Bennekom.  The unexpected stoutness of the German defense along the railway in Ede though ended any hope of seizing the Reehorst objective.  I then turned my attention to Bennekom and Wageningen.  My probe in Wageningen turned into a push by the 66th to grab the objective.  The Germans only had a HQ company and a motorized infantry company defending the position.  My guess is the other units were moved north to repulse the attack on Bennekom or fed into the Ede meatgrinder.

Just north of the objective there is an engineer company that will ultimately give me fits during the final hours.
The fight for Bennekom was intense.  I could not dislodge an engineer company dug in on the northern edge of the village.  A more experienced commander would have handled their artillery better and blasted them out of there. I had to sacrifice most of my line unit firepower in the village to accomplish the task, as my artillery wouldn't fire on the unit with friendlies in the way.

That left me vulnerable to a German armored counterattack with 2 hours to go. I was sitting on the objective but couldn't lock it in.  A more experienced Command Ops player would have posted his guarding units further out from the objective and prevented the attack.

Those heavier German armor companies gave me fits all battle.  This attack which came late, prevented me from gaining victory points and likely a marginal victory I think.

Casualties were heavy on both sides. I am proud of the pounding I inflicted on the German 1st SS Panzer but regret the heavy loss of AFVs in my division.

The final situation map.

This is a scenario I've saved and plan on finishing out if I can do that.  I really enjoyed it despite pulling my hair out over a series of blunders that cost me the battle.

Takeaways:

- Throughout the battle the German artillery pounded my units.  Keep it in mind when committing your armor.

-The heavier German armored companies dominated the field wherever they fought.  I never developed an effective counter to their attacks.

- The move north put the Germans off balance.  It sucked German units out of the south and bottled up the German reinforcements in an urban setting in the north.  A better commander would have seized this opportunity and won this scenario. I made too many mistakes to achieve victory.

-This is a straight forward scenario.  There are direct routes to all 3 objectives.  Each side has three objectives and similar OOB. I think this simplicity allows you to think more about how to utilize the troops you command and makes it more fun.

- The sides are fun to play.  No flak divisions here.  You are fighting with the best no matter which side you play.

Nice job to Ranger X3X with this scenario!






Comments

Anonymous said…
Great stuff really enjoyed reading that. I'm going to download it and give it a try. Cheers!!
Phil said…
Great stuff really enjoyed reading that. I'm going to download it and give it a try. Cheers!!
Chris said…
Thanks Phil I appreciate it! Kudos to Ranger X3X for creating a balanced fight.
Phil said…
Yeah i follow Rangers X3X blog. I'm quite new to Command Ops but i enjoy it when i get time to play it. I look forward to reading some more AAR's they help me out a lot in the learning process.
Chris said…
I am new as well Phil. I've completed 4 scenarios I think and feel like I understand about 20% of the rules. Can't imagine what it must be like to know what you are doing!