Another scramble to put fresh Belgian troops in the front line, fresh French troops to defend Lille, and fresh British troops to their front line. All three Entente nationalities were hit around Lille during the last turn. All held their ground, but the losses had to be made up to prevent another assault by the Central Powers succeeding.
A low odds attack on the Belgians north of Lille sees only a single full strength division remaining as the Central Powers react and roll an AX result. Another assault on Lille results in another AX – much to the Entente’s dismay. The Central Powers lost 23 German Manpower, 24 Saxon Manpower, and 89 Equipment points. The Entente lost 11 Belgian Manpower, 12 French Metropolitan Manpower, 8 French Colonial, and 27 Equipment points.
The Entente decides not to reinforce Lille with the French heavy cavalry since a full strength division is still present in the hex.
Tom: Talked too soon last turn. He lost 47 Manpower and 89 Equipment points to my 31 Manpower and 27 Equipment points, about two to one in losses, but the Belgians are going to have to pull back to only one hex and the French or British will have to take over, probably the French. This does not bode well for holding around Lille, although the city is still holding, I think I will probably let the Central Powers have it after Italy enters the war. I can’t afford the French losses. It is like Verdun was – bleeding the French manpower and morale.
The Zepplins attack London again, this time the KLM L3 registers the first terror hit on London, and history is made. All of the available Central Powers resource points are now present around Lille. Some minor troop movement allows the Central Powers to prepare in the area and renew the assault. The Belgians are crushed and retreat from the hex. This is the first hex captured by either side that was entrenched. The French are also forced out of Lille with heavy casualties. The Central Powers rubs it in further by capturing the factory.
Total losses are 1 German Manpower point against the Entente total of 7 Belgian Manpower, 5 French Metropolitan Manpower, 13 French Colonial Manpower, 8 French African Manpower, and 10 Equipment points. A very successful Central Powers turn.
The Entente reacts by sending what few reserves they have towards the coast and Lille. The Central Powers have taken two hexes this turn and the Entente will have to stop the advance with some very worn out troops.
Carl: A very good turn for me. After rolling all those ‘1s’ last turn, I finally got turned around and rolled two ‘6s’ on the critical battles, destroying the defensive forces and being able to advance into the hexes. I should be able to defend Lille and Ypres for the turn to get over the contested hex problem and entrench at Lille during the next turn. I am now satisfied to wait for better weather and more troops. The victories have come very hard and many of my spare divisions are cadred or destroyed. It will take a while for me to build up enough troops to really launch another good series of attacks to bleed the French, British, and Belgians more. The Belgians are now down to 22.5 morale points while the French have dropped to 153. I will take the time to rebuild my spare divisions and build up the resource points. The next attack will probably include a bombardment, something I have not really been able to afford the resource points for. Replacement points and production capability increases in the Mar I 15 production phase, something I truly need to rebuild my battered army. Of course, the Entente will benefit from the same type of increases, but I am confident that I will be able to resume the attack before they can.