Wednesday 13 December 2017

614 - Britain Vs Japan - A Bolt Action Disaster!

Hullo, All.

A BatRep with a difference today: the difference being that I took an absolute spanking! Yup - I got thrashed. But more of that shortly...

I'll keep this reasonably short: I'll do most of it with pictures. 
Fig. 1: the battlefield. Why are the Shropshire boys fighting
the Japanese on the outskirts of a small French village?
- Good question.
About a month ago, I fixed up a date to play Colin at the club, as he'd been putting together his Japanese force and I'd mentioned that I'd be happy to throw-down. We agreed on 1500pts of whatever, and I put together a fun little list that was roughly my normal platoon from 4KSLI with a Cromwell CS in support, and for a change I took along a second platoon for a giggle: a recce screen comprising a small carrier section, my faithful Staghound and my Recce Stuart. As it happened, the carrier section was - in fact - crewed by my [then] new RAF Regiment troops.
I brought my Vickers MMG for a change. Waste of time!
My new Chaplain (left) played medic (uselessly). Oh, and I've
finally finished my medium mortar. I'd forgotten that.
There were three of these infantry sections, and that's the
Recce Stuart on the right.
In their first outing, the Rock Apes played 'Recce Section'...
...and the heavier stuff on the right. What could possibly go awry?
Against me I had something like two large veteran squads, a Chi-Ha tank, a Ho-Ro SPG, some spearmen, a couple of regular squads, some suicidal fellows, a flamethrower team in a small family car, an air observer, and a medium AT gun. Against the Imperial Japanese Army, I actually had more dice. And I still lost. 
Colin's Japanese were very pleasingly painted!
Here are the bulk of the pics; excuses follow!
The Japanese centre. I'd immobilised his car but not dented its
passengers. More-or-less my only success was destroying his AT
gun in turn 1. It had been here. My only real sucsess.
In this pic (from my side) you can already see the ruins of the
building on the crossroads which had previously housed 3 Sect.
The Ho-Ro (T-L) blew it and them sky high with one lucky shot.
In this pic, you can clearly see the (already pinned) Bren Carriers
(which I'd spread out in order to use their pintle-mounted Brens
as an AA screen. With the pins, and bad luck, they failed utterly.
Also here, you can see the smoldering remains of my Stuart Jalopy
and the hunk of uselessness that was my Cromwell CS.
In the centre, my surprisingly brave Rock Apes went to meet
the spearmen (who'd already poked my PIAT team to death
through a building's window!).
They did well, but sadly it wasn't enough.
Meanwhile, on the right, my stalwart Staghound had one task...: 
..."Slowly edge forward and use all ten shots each turn to easily
destroy those Japanese advancing in the open toward you"...
...Needless to say, it just couldn't hit them for toffee. *sigh* 
The Chi-Ha advances. Only AV 8. Can I damage it? - Can I Hell.
After the battle: the FOO and my new Medic (Chaplain) pose
for a photo with 1 Sect. They just couldn't whittle-down the
looming Japanese veterans!
After the battle: I liked this pic...
...and this one... available in black-and-white!
Colin's very neat little Chi-Ha. Seriously: this thing should not
have survived.
And his gorgeous Ho-Ro. Easily the best unit for the Japanese.
I'd never properly faced a heavy howitzer before and now I'll
know always to steer clear of buildings when up against it!
Again, I simply could not draw a bead on it to pin it. Ridiculous.
Why did I lose?

Good question! It wasn't the nasty Japanese special rules (the sneaky set-up was negated by the mission - everyone started off-board), nor was it my tactical failings. Against an entirely unfamiliar foe, my 11AD chaps actually made some good decisions, as far as I was concerned. Nope. What led to my downfall was simply BAD LUCK. 

Dirty, rotten, stinking, baaaaaaaad luck. 

I've never considered myself either lucky or unlucky as a wargamer: I've always enjoyed a bit of both. In this game though, the dice gods utterly and comically deserted me. So it goes.

For his part, my opponent Colin played a good, solid game, and quite rightly capitalised appropriately on my idiotic dice rolls. He was - to quote (amongst others) Col Tim Collins, "magnanimous in victory." 

Here's to the Victor, eh?!


- D.


  1. Hey. Thanks for the game Chris. For anyone wondering my list was as followed.
    A full regular gan squad
    A full regular rifle squad
    A 10man bamboo spear squad
    A full paratrooper squad
    Mmg team
    Flame team in car
    3x suiciders
    A medium At gun
    1st lt
    2nd lt
    Air observer.


  2. What a smashing game. It's never fun to take a pasting, but it certainly still looked like an enjoyable game.

  3. Ouch. A good spanking is going to smart a bit and you got wolloped. Still, those Japanese Imperials looked very nice. Would love to see them on a Pacific board.

    1. Good point.

      I shall have a natter with the boss at the club, although honestly I don't know how much demand there is there.

      No-one is playing Test of Honour there either (yet?) so we've not even expanded into the currently popular bamboo house type of scenery either.

      I can assure you that I will NOT be getting a Pacific themed British force either...

      ...although I suspect my Sikhs'd look okay...


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