Monday, December 26, 2016

All Quiet on the Martian Front- Battle Report- 1st Battle of Camp Release

The commanding officer at Fort Ridgely has suddenly been flooded by refugees from further up the Minnesota River Valley, an event eerily like the start of the last Dakota War.  However, the Dakota had long since been moved to the reservations.  From their jumbled tales, he suspects that the War of the Worlds has come to his sleepy command.  Quickly, he organizes his local militiamen and sends them up river to find out what is going on.  In the meantime, he sends word to his superiors at Fort Snelling to prepare to reinforce and help defend the river valley.

Martian Scout Pod
3 Martian Scout Pods

Minnesota Militia Scouting Party
3 Infantry Squads
Machine-Gun Squad
MkII Baldwin Tanks
MKIII Steamer Tanks
MKIIc Command Tank

The Militia is moving up the Minnesota River Valley to investigate reports of Martian Red Weed sighted in the area, and to see if it heralds the approach on the Martian invader into the Minnesota territory.

They have camped over night near the burned out ruins of a farmhouse.  The troops are uneasy.  They turn in with a single Platoon on guard duty.  With the arrival of daybreak, they realize with horror that a Pod of Martian Scout Tripods was active in the area.  The closest one had taken up a resting position in a nearby woods.  As dawn arrives, both sides suddenly realize the close proximity they are to danger.

With startled shouts, the platoon on guard begins to wake their comrades and man the defenses.  The Martian blasts his war horns and summons his fellows into battle!

Special Rules:
Reserves- 2 Martian Scouts begin the game in reserve. Infantry units and the first Martian scout can take action immediately.

The game ends after the opposing army is broken.

The Militia set-up on their half of the board.  The Command Tank is placed anywhere within 12 inches of the short edge, and 24 inches in from the edge.  All human units must be deployed within 8 inches of the command tank to represent the human camp.

The Martian Tripod is set-up on the opposite side within 6 inches of the short board edge and 12 inches from either side.  They are set-up in a light wooded area.

Turn 1
Initiative: Minnesotans
The Minnesotans win Initiative.  The Infantry scrambles for cover in the farmhouse ruins and the orchard, while the watch platoon prepares to fire on the revealed scout.  The Command Tank moves over to the side of the ruins.

The Scout moves to the edge of the woods and waits, blowing his martian horns and waiting for reinforcements.

Turn 2
Initiative: Martians
A second scout appears from deeper in the woods and answers his friend's call.  The first scout waits, while the second one moves up.  

No more Minnesotans come to their comrades aid.  The third platoon moves up towards the stream banks to dig in.

Turn 3
Initiative: Martians
The first scout breaks the woodline.  He aims his Heat Ray at the troopers in the 1st Platoon near the stream.  He fires.  He hits with a 10, and the infantry element gets incinerated, but they stay put.  The second scout burst through the woodline and prepares to surge forward.

The Minnesotans hold in cover and wait for the Scouts to approach.  They ready their weapons.

Turn 4
Initiative: Martians
The two martians move closer to the 1st platoon, intent on incinerating them piecemeal.  They open fire, the first misses his target element, but the second incinerates one of them.  The last unit holds.  One of the scouts moves towards the 2nd platoon.

In return the Minnesotans jump into the action.  No reinforcements come to the battle.  The command tanks 4-pounder booms out across the field of battle, but the shot goes wide.  The last of 1st Platoon takes careful aim and fires.  Most of the shots bounce off harmlessly, but one shot takes off a point of damage.  2nd platoon misses.  They stay in cover.

Turn 5
Initiative: Martians
The first scout crosses the stream to engage 2nd Platoon.  The other one moves to finish off 1st Platoon.  The Valiant boys of 1st platoon are killed where they stand.  The other scout tries to sweep 2nd Platoon, but misses.  The first scout crosses back over the stream and takes cover in the brush.

The Minnesotans get ready to counter-attack the cautious scouts.  They can almost hear their reinforcements rumbling up behind them.  The 2nd Platoon opens fire with rifles and manages to damage the first scout again.  The command tank again misses.

Turn 6
Initiative: Martians
The scouts move boldly across the stream now.  Scout 2 opens fire on the command tank, but misses.  The second scout misses a sweep on the 2nd Platoon.   Scout 2 moves deeper into Minnesotan territory,while the first scout takes cover on the opposite side of the stream bed.

Both of the Tank platoons enter on the Minnesotan board edge.  The Type II's are crushing the soy bean fields as they approach, while the threes move across the open ground.  2nd Platoon begins to fallback towards the Orchard while the command tank presses forward.

The Tanks open fire with a thunderous boom.  Shells seem to ping harmlessly off the alien scout's  carapace.  3rd Platoon and the machine-guns open up on the probing scout, but fail to damage it.  The command tank's machine gun chatters away and blasts into the damaged Scout, damaging its Heat Ray.

Turn 7
Initiative: Minnesotans
The Tanks finally hit the Scout deep in their territory and damage its legs.  This time, the Scout martian is getting hammered by rifles and machine-guns to reduce it to 5 Armor.  The Command Tank uses his machine-guns again and damages Scout #1.

The last Martian enters the battlefield.  Scout #2, damaged and immobile uses his Heat Ray to sweep the ruins of the farmhouse.  He kills 2 Infantry elements and 1 Machine-gun unit.  The Machine-Gun squad is broken by the attack.  Scout #1 tries to fire on the Command Tank and fails to fire.  Scout #2 manages to stumble into the ruined farmhouse and completely break the machine-gun teams.

The remains of 3rd Platoon assault Scout #2 in the farmhouse.  The MkII and III's move up.  The assault fails as the tripod stands above it all.  The tanks fire on the Tripod in the Farmhouse ruins, the barrage kills the Minnesotan platoon and only scratches the Tripod.  The command tank fires his machine-guns at Scout #1 and fails to damage anyone.

Turn 8
Initiative: Minnesotans
The MKIII tanks open fire on Scout in the farmhouse.  Their shots find their mark and the alien explodes.  Too bad the explosion catches the MkIII unit and causes two of them to explode as well.  The Command tank riddles Scout #1 with machine-gun fire but fails to finish it.

The heavily damaged Scout #1 tripod retreats towards the wood line.  Meanwhile, Scout #3 moves up.  The Heat Ray of the Scout hits the Command Tank, but fails to damage it.

The MkIIs move up.  The Command Tank retreats from the approaching Scout tank, but is still in front of his troops. As he withdrawls, he fires his 4-inch gun and hits the Scout directly in the eye causing it to be destroyed.

With the destruction of his pod-mates, Scout #1 withdraws from the field, leaving it to the humans.  It was critical that he reported the contact to his superiors.

The Minnesotans regroup around the Command tank.  After picking over the remains of the destroyed Tripods, a few select pieces are sent by messenger back to Fort Ridgeley.  High Commands' worst fears have been realized.  The Martian menace has been confirmed in the Minnesota River Valley.  With that, word went to Fort Snelling to begin gathering additional soldiers and forces for the coming campaign.          
 Humans win the initial engagement in the Minnesota River Valley.

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