Copyright © 2018, Paul Scrivens-Smith

Copyright © 2018, Paul Scrivens-Smith

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Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Assault on Tobruk

Italian motorised infantry
On Thursday evening James, Steve, Mark and myself played a game of Bolt Action with a difference. We would recreate an Italian armoured attack on the Tobruk garrison.

We set up a defence line of sandbags and barbed wire and had the following British troops trying to hold the line:

  • Platoon Command of 2nd Leiutenant with SMG and two assistants with SMG
  • Two squads each of NCO with Rifle, 7 Riflemen, Bren-gun team
  • One 2" Mortar
  • Sniper team
  • Two Boyes anti-tank rifle teams
  • One Vickers HMG
  • One 2-pdr anti-tank gun
  • Two captured light howitzers - the Italians had knocked the sights off them before abandoning them so these are are -1 to hit.

The Italians would be attacking with the following:

Italian armoured car and tankette
  • Command of 2nd Leiutenant with Piston and assistant with rifle and a great big flag
  • Two squads each of NCO with Rifle, 7 Riflemen, machine-gun team in a truck
  • Six L3/35  light tankettes
  • One L3/33 flame tankette
  • One Armoured car

Both sides would start with eleven order dice in the bag.

We were playing our slight variation on Bolt Action where we add a couple of 'event dice' to the bag to trigger random events. There is a write-up on how we do that that in an earlier blog article. The following random events were used:

British defence line
  • Tea Break
  • Minefield
  • Bonus move
  • Bonus shoot
  • Bonus rally

Things started very well for the British, soon a L3/35 and a truck were burning away, but the 2-pdr had been under heavy fire and already a crewman was down. Things got even better when the armoured car blundered and turned tail only for the minefield random event to come up and it was immobilised on the Italian base edge.

Despite the early successes against the Italian armour, the British were starting to struggle. They were registering lots of hits on the Italian tanks but failing to convert them into any damage. Eventually the L3/33 flame tank was in range and soon accounted for the Vickers HMG and one of the captured Howitzers before running out of fuel.
British defence line

Things went from bad to worse for the British, the 2-pdr was knocked out by machine-gun fire and the remaining howitzer and anti-tank rifles were not even registering hits now. Eventually a couple of L3/35 broke through the trench line and it was soon all over.

I forgot to take my camera, so there are only a few shonky iPhone shots

Apart from a couple of sections of my British infantry everything else was from the collection of James Morris.

L3/35 tankette

A good start for the British

That trench line again

Everything just bounces off!