Wednesday, 25 March 2020

Stalingrad - the Matrix Game (part 2)

This evening we played through the second part of the game. Over both nights we took about two and a half hours to run through all 9 turns. Not bad considering the mix of experience among the players, including one who’d never previously endured a Matrix Game.
Eventually the Germans were thrown back to their start lines and much blood was spilled. I have summarised the narrative of the game below.
The clear winners were agreed to be Stalin and Chuikov, who each achieved their three objectives. Chuikov’ s survival was something of a surprise as he personally led at least half a dozen assaults!
My thanks to all six players for making this such an enjoyable experience.
 A couple of random photos taken towards the end of the game. 

Summary of narrative:

Turn 1. Panzers  conducted on reconnaissance to the south of Stalingrad preventing Soviet surprise counter-attacks. General Chuikov Conducted aggressive close defence. Major German attack into Red October Factory by SS and assault pioneers supported by artillery fire.

Turn 2. Hitler successfully argues for German combined arms bonus to apply in future combat. Stalin busts Chuikov down to colonel and promotes Tarasov to general. Chuikov conducts passive defence. Attack on Red October factory is reinforced. Tarasov mounts passive defence holding off the SS. 

Turn 3. German reinforcements arrive. Chuikov leads counter-attack across river, Germans capture Red October factory.

Turn 4. Germans bomb, shell and attack Kurgan Hill, repel Soviet attack on Red October.

Turn 5. Soviet reinforcements arrive at Volga ferry, Chuikov reorganises his defence of Kurgan Hill, but massive German assault captures Kurgan Hill. 

Turn 6. Germans establish observation posts on Kurgan Hill, improving effectiveness of artillery Luftwaffe. German reinforcements arrive at Goumrak. Winter begins to take hold, Soviet reinforcements flood in via Volga ferry. 

Turn 7. Bitter fighting over Kurgan Hill - Soviet assault bloodily repulsed. 

Turn 8. Von Paulus digs in at the airfield. Massive struggle for Kurgan Hill is bloodily repulsing by exhausted German defenders. Abortive German attack to Southern Station sustains casualties. 

Turn 9. Hitler makes speech claiming great victory in order to boost morale on the home front. Stalin claims the job is done but continues to send reinforcements. Massive Soviet assault on Kurgan Hill pushes back Germans to airfield perimeter huge casualties suffered on both sides. Red October factory falls to renewed Soviet assault led by NKVD troops. 


Archduke Piccolo said...

Far out! Scarcely concealed behind that terse narrative is what must have been a tense, dramatic and involving action. I'm curious as to what Genl Chuikov did (or didn't) do to get busted down to Colonel (and presumably lose command of 62 Army).

Martin Rapier said...

It was a great game Tim, well done. Such a shame those signed photos of the Fuhrer didn't make it through my air. I am glad the Sixth Army fulfilled its historic destiny for the greater good of the German people.

itchy's wargames said...

really great game and a great break from being stuck at home ,thanks Tim .

Simon said...

Never mind the shame about signed Hitler photos not turning up. The real shame was the failure of my (von Paulus) 2 assassination attempts! There was even a glimpse of the brief case under the table.

Great evening and thanks all for the intro to matrix gaming - ceryainly beats watching the telly. Also, the 54mm figures are great for webcam games.


Brian Carrick said...

Looks like a very small number of toys for a very big game, how does that work then?

Tim Gow said...

Archduke Piccolo
Chuikov was busted as part of an apparently random reorganisation of commands initiated by Comrade Stalin.

Tim Gow said...

Martin Rapier
Never mind - I’ll treasure the photo of you which did get through.

Tim Gow said...

Itchy’s wargames
You had a good war, Comrade!

Tim Gow said...

I thought you denied any knowledge of an assassination attempt. Entertainingly, there actually was a briefcase under my table.....

Tim Gow said...

Brian Carrick
The toys were purely representational. In most respects cardboard counters would have been easier, but where’s the fun in that?

Simon said...

Yes you zoomed the camera on the briefcase - perhaps that upset the the timing mechanism?

Absolutely no contest between cardboard counters and shiny 1/32 toy soldiers!


Pete. said...

Looks like good fun was had by all who played.



Martin Rapier said...

As Tim said, each toy was representational. I guess each one was a division or so, but in game terms it was a discreet element which could be ordered around.

Tim Gow said...

I’m giving the briefcase a wide berth but it hasn’t detonated yet!

Tim Gow said...

A very good game. I might run it again if I can amass a different group of 6 players......