Tuesday, 9 October 2018

Battle for Stonne, May 1940

This Chain of Command game was inspired by "Tactical Painter" on his blog and the new Too Fat Lardies Blitzkreig 1940 campaign booklet. Ian had chosen to be French on this occasion, so Yours Truly had the Germans.

This was Tactical Painter's schematic of the game showing the start lines, bearing in mind the Germans were defending in this scenario, so starting from the yellow dotted line

The patrol phase left the Germans in control of all the buildings except for the barn with the damaged roof (this is the view from the French end).

The Germans played a Shabby Nazi Trick - French civilians were forced out on to the road and told to move towards the French army. Because Ian had rolled really low on the Force Supports, both our options were limited - mine to 3, so I was unable to obtain any anti-tank capability.

He could afford one tank but it was a small one !

The markers show the extent of the French advance during the patrol phase. The tank is on the move already.

His aim to add some punch to the French troops deployed forward in the barn.

French infantry enter the orchards on their left

At this point, we were overtaken by thirst and hunger, so the Nags Head was beckoning !

 Ah ... beer !

and Steak & Kidney Pudding !

Enough - back to fighting. The French Senior Leader is confused for a while by the arrival of another French officer with conflicting orders. Turns out he was a Fifth Columnist but he caused some confusion for one French turn before they discovered his real identity and shot him !

The Germans deploy two full squads in the grounds of the Chateau behind the orchards

as a counter to the French approaching in the woods - their V-B launcher teams are also present

They cross the hedge but are still out of sight to the Germans because of the trees.

A third German squad is deployed right of the Chateau, so the bulk of the German force is now committed to the right side of the battlefield 

The civilians have reached the French tank safely and they are ordered to get behind lines as quick as they can.

With men on over watch in the barn, a French squad is deployed to advance towards the wall on the French right.

The French tank has moved forward, now supported by the V-B launch team

Frustrated by the lack of action on their front, German troops venture forward into the orchard

Two squads with MG34s

but they immediately attract the attention of the French behind the hedges

who were on overwatch hoping for just this opportunity

Over on the French right, the infantry have reached the cover of the wall and also go on overwatch

The Germans in the orchard are now being subjected to off-table mortar fire and a Junior Leader is injured

At this point, I threw four 6s which generated a random event - one of the buildings has caught fire and palls of smoke drift out. Fortunately for me, there were not any troops deployed in there.

Ambush !  Using a Chain of Command dice, I got an MG34 team to blast the side of the French tank to see if we could shock them into withdrawing - but no luck.

German troops continue to press on in the orchard

The smoke from the building is spreading further afield

a reckless German Junior Leader decides to lead a charge, throwing hand grenades as they go

the French infantry return fire before contact is made

The result of the melee is summed up by this picture - the whole German squad was killed, including their stupid leader. German morale suffers as a result.

The French are still in good shape

A German mortar team is starting to cause casualties and shock on the French behind the wall

ignoring the smoke and flames just next to them

The French tank ploughs through the smoke

and turns to try and ram an MG34 team which has been firing down the road

the Germans are lucky to escape over  the hedge before they could be crushed under the tank tracks

The French infantry having tried an assault over the wall but have retreated behind the barn with casualties and the concentrated German fire from mortars and infantry in one of the farmhouses has caused losses in the barn too.

 The German MGs try again to frighten off the French tank.  It has failed to dislodge any Germans from the buildings and its ramming attempt having failed, it is lucky that the Germans have no anti-tank ability.

A brave German NCO has dashed across the road to recover the mortar team from shock they had received from the French V-Bs

With most of the French infantry seeking cover from German fire

coming from the red roofed farm house

and the Germans still firmly ensconced in the Chateau

and the French infantry hidden in the orchards wary of advancing

the attack has broken down.

Lack of support options now tell, for both sides, as neither can deliver a decisive punch.

A stand off ensues, which better suits the Germans in reality.

An interesting first attempt at Blitzkreig 1940.


  1. A tough one for the Germans Steve, with nothing to take out the French tank.
    Pat (Silver Whistle blog)

  2. Too true Pat - a measly 3 points of support did that but it was fun to try out some of the Shabby Nazi Tricks. Need some nuns in 20mm now !!!

  3. A fun game. Nice to see more early war gaming now. Thanks for sharing.