Wed, 11 December 2013 00:27
With it being the right time of year, I thought I would play through jdromme's excellent looking Operation Compass campaign. As a terrible tinkerer I thought I would add a few historical variations. These will favour the British, but historically it was a smashing victory for the Brits. So if you want to maintain the scenario balance just ignore some or all of what follows.
The following rules are used in all ten scenarios unless excepted by the scenario notes below:
1) Only use the "Italian Artillery" rule from the "Royal Italian Army Command Rules". The Italian army was not highly motorized.
2) Much of the Italian artillery was obsolete and of WW1 vintage. It will battle with one less dice at ranges 2 and 4 i.e. 3-2-2-1-1-1.
3) All Italian infantry, except Bersaglieri and Libyan, suffers from 'Bug out'.
Infantry bug out - When an infantry unit retreats out of its original hex, distance is irrelevant, it must roll one battle dice and on an infantry symbol will suffer one casualty in addition to any other losses received as a result of the attack. If the unit remains in its original hex it does not suffer from this rule. Units that should retreat, but can't due to blocking units and/or terrain, are not affected by this rule, but would take casualties in accordance with the standard retreat rules.
4) Italian tanks battle with -1 dice if they move. A lack of radios and a two man turret, where the commander doubled up as the gunner, left them at a disadvantage against their British counterparts.
5) Italian tanks and British Matilda tanks may only move two hexes and battle. Other British tanks may move three hexes and battle.
6) The North African Desert Rule only applies to British cruiser tanks i.e. to all British tanks except the Matilda and never to the Italians.
Surprise at Nibeiwa - The crews of the Italian M11/39 tanks were caught by surprise by the British attack, and they were unable to man their tanks properly before they were knocked out. To simulate this, mark each Italian tank unit with a Battle Star. The first time these units are ordered the Battle Star is removed, but the unit cannot move or battle. The next time they are ordered they function normally. Unmanned tanks ignore all flags rolled against them and they may not use the Ambush order.
The Libyans fought hard at Nibeiwa. To quote a British tankman "The Italians may have been a push-over afterwards, but they fought like hell at Nibeiwa". The infantry bug out rule does not apply to the Italian infantry in this scenario.
Capture of Sidi Barrani - The two Italian infantry units of the 1st Libyan Division are not affected by the infantry bug out rule. The Libyans fought long after the Black Shirts had surrendered. Mark either the two Libyan units, or the four black shirt units with an Italian flag marker to differentiate them.
The Fall of Derna - The Italian infantry (Bersaglieri) are not affected by the infantry bug out rule.
Beda Fomm - The three Italian Bersaglieri units are not affected by the infantry bug out rule.
The Siege of Giarabub - The Italian player may not use the Air Power card. The Italian player may play it to order one unit of his/her choice.
[Updated on: Wed, 11 December 2013 10:38]