Over the weekend of 29th to 30th June 2019, Osset Wargames Club and honorary member for the weekend, Brian from the old SODS club, came to Legendary Wargames to try their hand at a post D-Day push on Caen entitled “Caen Opener”. With only six people (the minimum we can do a weekend for), they split up evenly as the game was attack and defence for the British and for the Germans. The basic premise of the game was as follows.
Following the D-Day Landings on 6 June 1944, the British and Canadian forces were unable to capture the Pegasus and Horsa bridges north east of Caen. Fierce German resistance in that area has resulted in counter attacks across the bridges by both sides being driven back and a stalemate has ensued.
The Allied advance elsewhere has made better progress, pushing south from the beach landing zones and now probing the defences around the North West perimeter of Caen.
Strong German thrusts from the West of Caen have now stalled the Allied advance, and the inability of the Allied forces to stop the Germans crossing the Orne River is causing them serious concern.
The start of the game saw a British Brigade of Paratroopers and support weapons having dropped over night to capture bridges NE and SW of Caen. Flying recon columns would enter shortly after the start of the game to try link with the paras whilst a main attack went in on Caen itself. The Germans had 21st Panzer attacking the four NE bridges and elements of 12th SS Panzer attacking those in the SW. Some limited German reinforcements would arrive during the game.
Here are some pictures of the game.
Above – 12th SS commanded by Richard against Brian’s plucky paras.
Rapid response group 1 on its way to reinforce Brian.
Heavy British armour commanded by Dave starts to move forward and is surprised by John’s German para’s in the outlying villages.
Rapid response group 2 on its way to reinforce Mike’s paras, watched over by Typhoon support.
More 12 SS arrive and disrupt rapid response group 1.
A view from the 21st Panzer (commanded by Jim) kick off positions looking across the Orne and on to the Caen canal.
21st Panzer attempting to cross the Orne and coming under fire from the para defenders
Start of Day 2 and the main British attack is growing and moving forwards.
12th SS causing havoc on the British right flank and disrupting the badly needed support to Brian’s paras.
Here come the big boys in the German attack. That Panzer IV is about to be caught at close range by the Daimler’s 2lbr and knocked out in place on the bridge. I think Brian enjoyed that.
Jim’s 21st Panzer and Mike’s Para’s and relief force face off across the Orne, neither willing to commit to the attack.
Dave tries to get a sneaky recon force into the side of Caen but is surprised by a German PAK40.
Dave looks on in deep thought. A man with too many troops to control. His command was meant to have been for 2 players.
A good view of the whole table from the SW bridges.
Another view of the whole table.
One for Dave here. Finally a German big tank knocked out, by artillery.
A closer view of the British attack against the outskirts of Caen.
And from another view point. It turned out to be one move too late to get in to Caen before the game finished.
A final view from the British centre towards the NE bridges
And one looking at the SW side of the table.
The game ended in a win for the Germans. They had enough of a toe hold on the bridges to deny the British the chance to get enough VP to beat the Germans VP score which was bolstered by the fact that there wer no Brits in Caen at the end of the game. One more move and it may have been different, but we will never know now.
The weekend was a fantastic success, and we thoroughly enjoyed hosting the guys again. Add to this that the weather was great and we managed to have lunch in the garden on both days.
If you have any thoughts on what you have seen, or if you would like to come and try one of our Legendary weekends, please don’t hesitate to get in touch.
I hope you enjoy this post, and please please drop us some comments on the blog.