Plunging deeper into the wargame, we use the SoS Master Sequence of Play Summary in an effort to play the game accurately.
One of the first things needing to be done is to determine the exact current game status of Denmark. Initially, it was thought here that Denmark would “surrender” in the Apr I 40 Allied turn initial phase per Rule 38A6-National Surrender. But subsequent SoS rules study has come up with Rule 38D2-The Danish Protectorate, as perhaps the correct answer regarding Denmark’s exact status in the reported game. Per this rule all the metropolitan Denmark map hexes evidently automatically become “German-controlled” since that point in the Apr I 40 German turn combat phase when the Danish capital was captured per Rule 38A3-Governments, along with the proviso that by then all Danish major and dot city hexes are German controlled. Rule 38D2-The Danish Protectorate, indicates that since that time there should be some new “Danish Protectorate” forces set up on the map per the SoS Danish OB. These new forces are at “Protectorate Neutrality Watch.” Also, “the Greenland and Iceland holding boxes and the hexes in the Faeroe Islands are now owned by neither side.”
Next the supply status of the German forces in Norway needs to be scrutinized and determined. Some are in supply, some are not. Red U-1 supply status markers from the old FitE game will be used to indicate units out of supply in the Apr I 40 Allied turn; black supply status markers from the same game will be used to indicate a unit’s designated out of supply status in subsequent Axis turns.
The German forces in the Narvik hex (5C:1010) can “trace a naval-element supply line” back to a German port, I think, per Rules 12B-Tracing Supply and 34F-Naval Supply Lines, and therefore are all in supply.
The disrupted 2-8* Mtn III B at Trondheim (5C:2432) is red U-1, as its naval-element supply line is pinched off by the naval combat zones of each of the Norwegian intrinsic CDs at the adjacent fjord coast hexes 5C:2333 and 10B:2302.
The two disrupted 2-6 Inf IIIs C at Bergen (10B:3016) are out of supply by virtue of the still functioning Norwegian intrinsic CD located at the Bergen hex, which exerts a naval combat zone in the Bergen hex itself, thus blocking there the naval-element supply line back to a German port. It does have a naval hit, but it takes two naval/air hits to knock it out with a damage hit marker.
At Oslo (10B:4007) the disrupted wint 2-6 Inf III F and the LW 1-5 Para II II/1 are also both red U-1, because of the still functioning Norwegian intrinsic CDs two hexes to the south at coast hexes 10B:4108 and 4109 on the Oslofjord, each exerting their blocking naval combat zones there across the fjord’s waterway. To be sure, in the particular Oslo hex situation the Norwegian intrinsic CD level of 1 associated with the at start placed “fort marker in coastal hex” at this point in the Allied initial phase is still knocked out with the damage hit marker.
The wint 2-6 Inf III F at Tonsberg (10A:4310), at the mouth of the Oslofjord is in supply not via the minor port at Tonsberg itself, which is in the blocking naval combat zone of the Norwegian intrinsic CD at Fredrikstad (4309) across the fjord, but rather via an overland element westwards to the adjacent minor port at Larvik, at 10B:4311. Similarly, the wint 2-6 Inf III E, the 0-1-5 Const III 6, the LW 0-6 Lt AA II I/611, and the He 111H4 B type (S code) air unit at woods coast hex 10B:4415 (w/ a 1-cap permanent airstrip) on the southern Norwegian coastline are in supply via an overland element to the adjacent German controlled minor port of Kristiansand (4416).
However, seven overland Norwegian controlled hexes away from Kristiansand to the NW at the 3-cap permanent airfield at coast hex 10B:3710, next to Stavanger, the German forces there need to draw on the four available flown in supply points also in the hex. The Axis player elects to put into supply the two Ju 88A1 B type (S code) air units, the Me 109E F type air unit, and the wint 2-6 Inf III B. Keep in mind we’re using Optional Rule 44C1-Airbase Supply in this game. This leaves the Ju 52 T type air unit and the LW 1-5 Para II I/1 fully red U-1, although to be sure technically all the German forces in the hex are in fact U-1, but the four designated units are considered in “special supply” this turn per Rule 12C2a-Supply Points.
All other German and Norwegian forces are in supply this turn, I believe.
Next comes the Allied reinforcement activities for the Apr I 40 Allied turn. Per the SoS Norway: 1939-1945 OB, the Norwegians receive a certain amount of general mobilization +0 ground units at various cities throughout Norway. Note, however, a few of them from this list are already on-map per the separate SoS Campaign for Norway scenario at start OB, as evidently historically Norway mobilized five of them when they went to partial mobilization after the Winter War began in December of 1939. The implication here is that in a full-fledged SoS NTO scenario the Finnish/Allied player could mobilize five particular Norwegian ground units of their own choosing rather than the historical ones evidently indicated in the SoS Campaign for Norway scenario. Maybe we have here the legitimate makings of a limited Norwegian “free deployment set-up” for a future Campaign for Norway scenario variant. The Norwegians receive no special replacements for the recently eliminated 0-1-6 Inf II 2/HMKG in the replacement pool or the sunken CD TF Norge. The Norge army also gets as reinforcements three 2-3-6* Mtn X builds they can assemble if they can stack together the correct units. They also get 3 pts naval transport and a significant increase in their intrinsic CDs. By the end of the initial phase the Norwegian coastline now bristles with menacing coastal artillery.
The Western Allies get a very powerful array of British navy warships, along with a French 5-pt CL TF. The British naval fleet comes with the (2)-pt CV CG (AA=3) Furious. The Br Fleet Air Arm provides a Sword 1 A type (code VC) air unit, and per the SoS Errata Sheet 18 Jan 1999 also the Skua DF type (code C) air unit, the later unit presumably appearing at the Orkney Islands holding box. Note that per Rule 27A4-CGs and Aircraft, only one Fleet Air Arm air unit can base on the aircraft carrier Furious; the other unit must be land based somewhere (eg., at a holding box, for now). I am assuming that the aircraft carrier Furious arrives loaded with either the Sword 1 and Skua air units, or neither, and that one or both of the Fleet Air Arm air units arrive based at the Orkney Islands holding box. In this game the Furious arrives with the Sword 1 A type Fleet Arm air unit on board and the Skua is based at the Orkney Islands holding box. Also included in the reinforcements are a Br Well 1C and a Whit 5 NB type air unit, two unsupported British inf Xs in the Scotland holding box, and a mine point. However, in the SoS OB booklet, the 3-6 Inf X 5 reinf indicated for this turn on p. 4 of the Campaign for Norway Allied OB is, I think, almost certainly meant to be the 3-6 Inf X 24 G, the 3-6 Inf X 5 possibly getting mixed up with the Br 8-6 Inf XX 5 indicated in the Nordic Adventure Allied OB found on the next page. In this game we use the 3-6 Inf X 24 G as the reinf unit this turn. Otherwise the SoS Campaign for Norway Allied OB found on pp. 4-5 of the OB booklet appears to quite accurately dovetail with the Allied OB found in Appendix B of T.K. Derry’s dated (1952) but otherwise apparently semi-official British history book, The Campaign in Norway, at least from the British/Western Allied perspective.
After the Allied reinforcement activities are done, the Norwegians must decide what to do about their capital marker in the contested Oslo hex (10B:4007). At this point in the initial phase they decide to “evacuate the government, moving it to another city” in Norway, per Rule 38A3-Governments. They evacuate their Norwegian capital marker out of the contested Oslo hex and move it into the contested Trondheim hex (5C:2432), stacking the govt marker there with the just arrived Norwegian 1-6 Mtn III 5/12 ST reinf and the disrupted and red U-1 German 2-8* Mtn III B. The Norwegians obviously intend to take back completely the contested Trondheim hex by the end of the combat phase, no doubt with the assistance of Royal Navy NGS.
Next the naval hit marker is removed from the intrinsic CD at the Bergen hex. The damage hit marker is also removed from the intrinsic CD associated with the at start placed “fort marker in coastal hex” at Oslo. At this point in the initial phase (eg., after the reinforcement activities) the intrinsic CD at the Bergen hex has been strengthened to a factor of 3 per the Allied OB instructions.
Late in the Allied initial phase both sides’ inoperative air units become operative; then the German side at least must make inoperative at each airbase LW air units in excess of the base’s capacity. At the reference city airbase at Narvik the Mxd T (LR) T type air unit is made inoperative. At the important 3-cap permanent airfield at 10B:3720, next to Stavanger the German player makes inoperative the Ju 52 T type air unit. At the reference city airbase at Esjberg, on the west coast of the Danish peninsula, one of the two Ju 52 T type air units based there becomes inoperative.
Neither side flies any CAP missions in the initial phase.
Because the Axis player has a combat naval group at sea this turn, the Allied player assigns to the naval patrol air mission (Rule 20G2i-Naval Patrol) the Sword 1 A type (code VC) air unit, currently based aboard the Br aircraft carrier Furious at the Orkney Islands holding box.
The Axis player assigns to the naval patrol air mission only the He 111H B type (S code) air unit and the Ju 87R D type air unit based at the 3-cap permanent airfield at 10B:5014, on the NE coast of the Danish peninsula.
Allied Movement Phase
1st Naval Movement Step
First thing in the movement phase the non-phasing Axis player says “I’d like to do some non-phasing air missions at the first opportunity.” The phasing player, having no no momentous moves of his own needing to be done now, says “Go right ahead, but do each air mission one at a time and let me know, just in case as a result of your air mission I, as the phasing player, suddenly decide I want back the phasing initiative in order to do a movement of my own.” The non-phasing player replies: “Yes, of course.” The non-phasing Axis player then air transfers both the He 115B B type (code SF) air unit at Narvik and the operative Ju 52 T type air unit at Esjberg (13A:0621) in Denmark back to the Northern Germany holding box.
After this the Allied player begins embarking a number of 1RE ground units located at the British Game Chart holding boxes or at friendly Norwegian ports onto either Norwegian NTPs or aboard Allied light TF naval units.
At Tromso (5C:0307) the at start Norwegian 1-6 Inf III 16TR spends 30 MPs embarking on a newly arrived Norwegian NTP. At Mosjoes (5C:1622) the at start Norwegian 1-6 Mtn III 6/14SH embarks on the second newly arrived Norwegian NTP. The third available Nor NTP is put on hold, for now.
At the Scotland holding box the Br 5-pt CL TF Cruiser-4 spends 30 MPs embarking the Br 3-6 Inf X 24G reinf located there.
The Br 5-pt CL TF Cruiser-3 spends 17 MPs off-map to move from the Orkney Islands holding box to the Scotland holding box, where there it spends its remaining 13 MP naval movement step allowance embarking the Br 2-6 Inf X 148 reinf. The Allied player decides that it is too early to load up onto a heavy TF the mine point at the Orkney Islands holding box. The mine business will come after the big initial Allied naval reaction to the German invasion of Norway.
The 7-pt BB TF Rodney and the French 5-pt CL TF Cruiser-1 leave the Orkney Island holding box and sail eastwards 30 MPs towards Trondheim, ending the 1st naval movement step at all-sea hex 10B:2005, two hexes NE of the Norwegian controlled port of Kristiansund (10B:2206). This is surely the Allied combat naval group that will provide the powerful NGS for the impending Norwegian/Western Allied attack against the beleaguered and disrupted 2-8* Mtn III B at the Trondheim hex. For the first time the Allied player rolls on the Danger Zones Chart for the German-exerted DZ in the Atlantic Sea Zone: the dice show 7; but only 12 = Contact. The combat naval group has left the British Isles quickly on the somewhat long voyage to Trondheim because it must begin the 90 MP cost required to “prepare to provide NGS for the next combat phase” by the beginning of the 3rd naval movement step, at the latest. They are safely out of range of the He 111H4 air unit on sea patrol from the airfield on the north Denmark coastline; nor can their voyage cause any unwanted reaction from the non-phasing Kriegsmarine combat naval group at faraway hex 10B:4320. Although the Fr CL TF’s strength points are likely not needed in the combat calculations for the impending ground attack at Trondheim, it goes along the voyage to perhaps take the hit for the Rodney in case the Allied combat naval group takes a bad die roll on the Danger Zones Chart.
Sensing that things could come to a head quickly in the 2nd naval movement step, the Axis player now sends the Me 110C1 HF type air unit based at the Aalborg reference city hex (10B:5115) on the CAP mission over all-sea hex 10B:4320, where the large Kriegsmarine combat naval group waits to draw fire from the expected Allied attack against the German amphibious assault force stranded at the Bergen hex.
2nd Naval Movement Step
North of the Arctic circle, the Norwegians spend 28 MPs to sea transport their 1-6 Inf III 16Tr from Troms (5A:0307) to Mosjoen (5C:1622). This leaves it with 5 MPs in the movement phase. Then the 1-6 Mtn III 6/14SH at Mosjoen spends 23 MPs to sea transport northwards to Harstad (5A:0712), three hexes away from the Norwegian 1-2-6* Inf III 6/15NH, next to Narvik at mountain coast hex 5C:0910. It wants to eventually stack with this unit and then assemble into the 2-3-6* Mtn X 6. Per the Naval Transport Costs Summary it too, should have 5 MPs in the movement phase. Both Norwegian cargo naval groups roll no contact on the Danger Zones Chart.
The Allied combat naval group at all-sea hex 10B:2005, comprising the 7-pt BB TF Rodney and the Fr 5-pt CL TF Cruiser-1, spend 11 MPs to finally enter the Trondheim hex (5C:2432). They do not enter the port, but rather stay off-shore “at sea.” For the rest of the 2nd naval movement step they linger there, waiting. No problem for them this naval movement step on the Danger Zones Chart.
At the Scotland holding box the Br 5-pt CL TF Cruiser-3 spends 13 MPs finishing the embarkation of the Br 2-6 Inf 148; then it spends its remaining 17 MPs of the naval movement step to leave the Scotland holding box and reaches all-sea hex 10B:2329, one hex south of the southern tip of the Shetland Islands, where there is a 1-cap permanent airfield. It stays out of range of He 111H sea patrols and in particular the 15 hex reaction radius of the Kriegsmarine combat naval group off the southwest coast of Norway. The Danger Zones dice roll is a 10: no contact.
Then the British Navy begins a significant naval operation. A large combat naval group leaves the Orkney Islands holding box, expending 1 MP per the Allied Game Chart to enter map 10B at all-sea hex 2433. This combat naval group consists of the following British naval units:
- Furious CV TF (carrying the Sword 1 A type FAA air unit)
- Valiant BB TF
- Warspite BB TF
- Renown BC TF
- Repulse BC TF
- Cruiser-1 CA TF
After rolling a no contact on the Danger Zones Chart, it moves two more hexes to 2532, where the aircraft carrier Furious remains while the rest move SE to all-sea hex 10B:3029.
After this initial manoeuvre the Br Cruiser-4 CL TF (w/ Br 3-6 Inf X 24G) and the Br 5-pt CA TF Cruiser-2 leave together the Scotland holding box and expend 13 MPs to also move into hex 10B:3029. This combat naval group successfully rolls no contact on the Danger Zones Chart. The two British fleets combine at hex 3029 into a single large combat naval group per Rule 28-Naval Movement: General. This hex is one hex west of both the 15 hex reaction radius of the Kriegsmarine combat naval group at 10B:4320 and the sea patrol radius limit of the He 111H air unit at the 3-cap permanent airfield at 10B:5014, on the NE coast of the Danish peninsula. Not sure exactly how the Axis player will handle the unfolding naval warfare situation, the Allied player cautiously announces that the next MP will be the first MP of night movement, and proceeds to move at night 10 hexes due east to all-sea hex 10B:3019, three hexes due west of Bergen, for a naval movement step subtotal of 23 MPs, so far for this combat naval group. The Axis player does nothing. Then the Allied player moves the Furious CV TF, carrying the Sword 1 FAA air unit, westward 13 hexes to all-sea hex 10B:2619, five hexes NW of Bergen. Next the Allied player expends 1 MP to move in daylight the main force at 3019 one hex west to all-sea hex 3018 and pauses; the British sailors scour the sky for Heinkels on the torpedo run; but the Axis player does nothing. Seeing the emerging pattern, the Allied player then goes ahead and moves his entire main combat naval group two more hexes into the Bergen hex, the main combat naval group thus expending a grand total of 28 MPs. The Cruiser-4 CL TF (w/ Br 3-6 Inf X 24G) enters the Bergen harbor and expends its last 2 MPs to begin disembarking the Br inf X at the hex; but the rest of the British combat naval group lingers off-shore “at sea” in the hex. The combat naval group in the Bergen hex consists of the following British naval units:
off-shore “at sea:”
- Valiant BB TF
- Warspite BB TF
- Renown BC TF
- Repulse BC TF
- Cruiser-1 CA TF
- Cruiser-2 CA TF
disembarking in the Bergen port:
- Cruiser-4 CL TF (w/ Br 3-6 Inf X 24G)
3rd Naval Movement Step
At the Trondheim hex (5C:2432) both the Br Rodney BB TF and the Fr Cruiser-1 CL TF expend 30 MPs preparing to provide NGS for the next combat phase. This Western Allied combat naval group is off-shore “at sea.” It rolls a 7 on the Danger Zones Chart: no contact.
The Br Cruiser-3 CL TF (w/ Br unsupported 2-6 Inf X 148) at all-sea hex 10B:2328 spends 30 MPs to reach all-sea hex 10B:2102, three hexes WSW of Trondheim. It rolls a no contact on the Danger Zones Chart.
At the perhaps increasingly dangerous Bergen hex (10B:3016), the Cruiser-4 CL TF (w/ Br unsupported 3-6 Inf X 24G) expends 28 MPs to complete the disembarkation of its infantry unit cargo at the Bergen port. Then it stays put in the harbor till the end of the current naval movement step.
The large British combat naval group off-shore “at sea” in the Bergen coast hex first rolls a 7 on the Danger Zones Chart. Then the Renown BC, the Repulse BC, and the Cruisers-1 and -2 CA TFs expend their 30 MP naval movement step allowance preparing to provide NGS for the next combat phase. Per the Naval MP Summary found on SoS Game Pay Chart (2) it takes a total of 90 MPs to complete the preparation for NGS. Those EA members interested in the unfolding Bergen hex SoS naval warfare game play may wish to study and ponder Rule 33A-Naval Gunfire Support [NGS]. The big Royal Navy warships comprising the Valiant BB and Warspite BB TFs do not prepare to provide any NGS for the next combat phase, but definitely linger off-shore “at sea” in the Bergen hex, evidently providing added protection to the rest of the large combat naval group there in the hex, of which they are of course also a part of.
Then the Allied player rolls the dice on the Danger Zones Chart for the solitary Furious CV TF (carrying the Sword 1 A type (code VC) air unit) at all-sea hex 10B:2619, five hexes NW of the Bergen hex. The dice show 5: no contact. The Allied player would have liked to have provided the Br CV TF with some protection TF escort, but so far none has been available on the busy and big Allied reaction turn to the Nazi invasion of Norway. The implication is that the Allied player believes the risks are worth it in terms of Allied wargame campaign victory.
Finally, in a perhaps dangerous and risky move, the Allied player does something to increase the tension and up the ante in the escalating naval war gamble unfolding in the North Sea. Using the 3rd and last available Norwegian NTP, the Allied player begins to embark on it the Nor 1-6 Inf III 8RI reinf located at the important standard port of Stavanger at the southwestern Norwegian coast hex at 10B:2619, expending 30 MPs to complete the embarkation by the end of the current naval movement step.
4th Naval Movement Phase
At the Trondheim hex the Western Allied naval combat group consisting of the Br Rodney BB TF and the Fr Cruiser-1 CL TF add another 30 MPs preparing to provide NGS for the next combat phase. However, at the start of the combat naval movement phase this task force rolls a 12 on the Danger Zones Chart. A random drawing picks the Fr Cruiser-1 CL TF as the naval unit “check[ed] for damage from the danger zone [contact]” per Rule 34D2-Danger Zones. The “1” column of the Naval Combat Table us used and the die result is 2: a Miss.
The Br Cruiser-2 CL TF (w/ unsupported Br 2-6 Inf X 148) at nearby all-sea hex 10B:2102, expends 6 MPs to sail through the narrow Norwegian fjord coast hexes and eventually enter the Trondheim port hex, where its expends its remaining 24 MPs for the current naval movement step proceeding with the disembarkation of its ground unit cargo at the Trondheim hex. At the start of the naval movement step it rolls a no contact on the Danger Zones Chart.
Next the Br Furious CV TF (carrying the Sword 1 A type FAA air unit) at all sea hex 10B:2619 rolls the dice on the Danger Zones Chart and gets a 9: no contact. For the second naval movement step in a row it remains stationary here, 5 hexes to the NW of the Bergen hex. However, in the current naval movement step the Furious CV TF is joined by the Br Cruiser-4 CL TF, which now leaves the port of Bergen after completing in the previous naval movement step the disembarkation of its 3-6 Inf X 24G cargo at the Bergen port hex. After rolling a no contact on the Danger Zones Chart upon leaving the Bergen port, the Br CL TF spends 6 MPs to join the Br CV TF at 10B:2619 and combines with it to form there a new somewhat larger combat naval group.
Back at the Bergen hex the particular assigned TFs of the large Br combat naval group there off-shore “at sea” expend another 30 MPs preparing to provide NGS for the next combat naval phase. The two exceptions to the NGS preparation are the Valiant and Warspite BB TFs, which evidently intend to screen the Br naval units providing the NGS. At the start of the current naval movement step this combat naval group rolls a no contact on the Danger Zones Chart. If the Germans are going to do something about the unfolding Allied naval operation at the Bergen hex time is running out. This is the third Allied naval movement step in a row that the Axis player has neither flown the available and in range He 111H B type (S code) air unit on the sea patrol air mission it is assigned to, nor attempted a reaction movement die roll per Rule 28B-Reaction Movement to Allied naval group MP expenditures within the reaction range of the non-phasing Kriegsmarine naval group at 10B:4320.
Then, at the Norwegian held Stavanger standard port hex at 10B:2619, the Allied player announces that he is sea transporting the Nor 1-6 Inf III 8RI reinf which was embarked on the Norwegian NTP during the last naval movement step. A little unsure as to the best way to handle the tricky and dangerous sea transport operation, the Allied player decides first to do the sea transport using exclusively inshore waters per Rule 34A1-Inshore Waters in order to prevent this particular sea transport movement from triggering any reaction movement by Axis naval group at 10B:4320. Secondly, the Allied player says that the first 10 MPs of the inshore waters sea transport will be done using night movement in order to avoid for a time any possible sea patrol activity by the He 111H B type (S code) air unit. Accordingly, the Nor NTP sea transports the Nor ground unit 10 MPs at night movement using exclusively coastal hexes to the Norwegian coastal island of Bolmo, at hex 10B:3218. Then it expends 2 MPs in daylight to sea transport to the Norwegian coastal island of Huftor, at adjacent hex 3118. Pausing for a moment to see what the Axis player will do, the Allied player notes that the LW does nothing. Now having to sail in daylight but still utilizing inshore waters, the Allied player goes ahead and sea transports the Nor ground unit to the port of Bergen, expending a total of 16 MPs in doing the sea transport voyage. The NTP then expends its remaining 14 MPs of the naval movement step to begin disembarking its ground unit cargo at the Bergen port hex.
5th Naval Movement Step
At the Trondheim hex the combat naval group there consisting of the Br Rodney BB TF and the Fr Cruiser-1 CL TF add their final 30 MPs preparing to provide the NGS for the next combat phase, reaching the 90 MP cost at the last MP of the current naval movement step. The Danger Zones Chart dice roll indicates a no contact result.
The Br Cruiser-2 CL TF (w/ Br unsupported 2-6 Inf X 148) in the Trondheim port spends 6 MPs to complete the disembarkation of its ground unit cargo there. Then it spends 24 MPs to sail out of the Trondheim hex and voyage westwards to all-sea hex 10B:2417, three hexes to the NE of the Br combat naval group comprising of the Br Furious CV TF and the Br Cruiser-4 CL TF. Upon leaving the safety of the friendly Trondheim port hex harbor the Br Cruiser-2 CL TF rolls a no contact on the Danger Zones Chart.
At all-sea hex 10B:2619 the Br combat naval group comprising the Furious CV TF and the Br Cruiser-4 CL TF also rolls a no contact on the Danger Zones Chart. This naval group remains in its hex throughout the naval movement step.
At the Bergen hex the Allied player first says that he is expending 16 MPs to complete the disembarkation of the Nor 1-6 Inf III 8RI there. Then he rather quickly announces “the end” of the preparations of providing NGS for the next combat naval phase by the particular assigned naval units of the large Allied combat naval group in the Bergen hex, and in the same breath says “the end” of the naval movement sub-phase itself is in fact a done deal. The Axis player says “Wait a minute, countdown the last 30 MPs of the NGS preparation, and let me know when you get to the 29th MP.” Then, as if aiding and abetting the enemy, he also blurts out “Do you want to use night movement at or near the end of your naval movement step MP activity at the Bergen hex?” From all this war game subterfuge an array of important and critical rules issues is about to spring forth.
We will pause for a moment for the EA audience and will attempt to explain what the Allied player is trying to do at the Bergen hex in the naval movement sub-phase. First, in having the Renown BC, the Repulse BC, and the Cruiser-1 and 2 CA TFs (all being 5 strength pt TFs) prepare NGS for the next combat phase, the Allied player is providing up to a possible total of 20 NGS strength attack points to be added to any accompanying ground unit attack tally. If I am understanding Rule 33A-Naval Gunfire Support correctly, each 1 RE of ground units attacking means 4 NGS strength points can be added to the attack, along with 1 extra NGS strength point possibly added, if available. The Allied player already has 3 REs of ground units at the Bergen hex even before the ground movement sub-phase. The Germans have a disrupted and unsupported factored defense strength total of 1 at the Bergen hex, with up to 3 factored DAS tac factors by two Ju 88A1 air units flown in from the 3-cap permanent airfield at 10B:3720, for a possible grand total of 4 defense factors. The projected Allied attack against the two disrupted and unsupported Ger 2-6 Inf IIIs at the Bergen hex will be done with a -3 modifier: -2 for mud and -1 for the rough terrain at the Bergen hex. A hard look at the SoS Ground CRT indicates that, under the circumstances of the phasing player conducting combat within a hex also containing disrupted enemy units, any combat with a -3 modification is likely unwise/risky at 5 to 1 or less, because of possible AR and AS results; but attacking at 6 to 1 or greater is OK, as it guarantees the Allies complete control of the hex after combat.
In this situation it appears the only available defense strategy for the Axis player is either the 3 tac factor DAS mission and/or by somehow “removing” by naval combat this naval movement step some or all the available Allied NGS for the projected combat.
With all the above in mind the Allied player countdowns his NGS preparation expenditure to the 29th MP and says so to the Axis player. Then the Axis player initiates the sea patrol air mission by the He 111H B type (S code) air unit based at the 3-cap permanent airfield at 10B:5014, on the NE coast of the Danish peninsula, 17 hexes away from Bergen. We assume that per Rule 20G2i-Naval Patrol, all naval patrol air ops are, in the final analysis, triggered by any particular MP spend of an enemy naval group during a naval movement step done in “any hex within an air unit’s naval patrol zone.” Evidently a naval unit that does absolutely nothing but linger in a hex during a naval movement step nevertheless “spends” its 30 MP allowance in the hex. Per the Success Table Die Roll Modifiers there appears to be a +3 for the calm sea conditions at the Bergen hex per Rule 41B1-Campaign for Norway Scenario: Starting Conditions, and an added total of -3 “for every 5 hexes (or fraction thereof) after the first 5 flown to the target hex.” The Success Table die roll is a 2: failure. The He 111H returns inoperative to the 3-cap airfield at 10B:5014.
The Axis player then says “Proceed, if you’re ready.” The Allied player says “Yes, and it’s still daylight.” Even this ominous news tells the Axis player a lot about the Allied player’s intentions in the naval warfare operation at the Bergen hex. When the Allied player says he has expended the 30th MP of his NGS preparation the Axis player says “I wish to attempt a naval group reaction per Rule 28B-Reaction Movement to the 30th MP done at the Bergen hex by the phasing naval group there, which is 15 hexes (traced by sea) away from the Kriegsmarine naval group at 10B:4320.” After some rules quibbling the die roll is done and the Success Table is consulted; a 2: a Failure.
Had the reaction attempt been successful, the non-phasing Axis player would have moved his combat naval group 15 hexes to 10B:3017, at the Norwegian isle of Sorta. This would have instigated combat with the Allied combat naval group in the adjacent Bergen hex, along with the intrinsic CD with a strength of 3 in the Bergen hex per Rule 28C-Movement and Combat, and along with a sea patrol air op mission by the Sword 1 A type air unit aboard the aircraft carrier Furious five hexes away to the NW. The ensuing big naval battle would likely have been quite hurtful to the Kriegsmarine combat naval group, whose survival would have been contingent on an eventual successful disengagement die roll per Rule 29D-Disengagement. But the German naval attack might well have forced the Allied player have his TFs “prepared for NGS” come to the aid of the two battleship TFs Valiant and Warspite and draw their fire too, into the naval combat shoot-out. Per Rule 33-Naval Gunfire Support, this untimely Allied naval combat firing would have undone the NGS preparations of the four Br TFs in the hex and would have certainly frustrated the impending Allied attack against the two disrupted Ger inf IIIs in the hex, compelling the Allies to evacuate the Bergen hex in their ground movement sub-phase and abandon the dot city/major port Bergen hex to the Nazi amphibious assault force remaining in the hex. For those who may wish to ask, an Axis disengagement die roll would perhaps take place after the end of the second round of naval combat, after possibly an unsuccessful initial but timely British attempt to disengage after the first round using just the two BB TFs Valiant and Warspite as the screen and the four TFs prepared for NGS as the main body. At the second round of naval combat the Allied player may have been compelled to make their entire combat naval group the screen if the Valiant and Warspite TFs had taken a hard pounding in the first. This would have been the certain signal to the Axis to attempt disengagement at the end of the round with what would have been left of the Kriegsmarine task force, having by then done the intended damage to the projected Allied ground attack at the Bergen hex. I believe a successful Axis disengagement die roll in this particular situation would have meant the end of the 5th naval movement step; and that per Rule 29D the non-phasing Axis player could/would have moved 15 MPs southwards at the very start of the 1st Allied naval movement step of the exploitation phase. By the way, in this case in the wargame the last Axis non-phasing MP would have been at night movement.
After this the Allied player says “Now, the Allied movement phase naval movement sub-phase is certainly over.” “Yes, of course,” replies the Axis player.
Ground Movement Sub-Phase
Beginning in the far north above the A weather line and in snow weather, the Nor 1-6 Mtn III 6/14SH which sea transported earlier to the point city/minor port of Harstad (5C:0712) on the twisted Norwegian isle of Hinn appears to be able to admin move two hexes eastwards across a narrow straits hexside onto the European mainland and hence along a fjord coast road to wooded rough coast road hex 5C:0911, one hex west of the Nor 1-2-6* Inf III 15NH at mountain road junction coast hex 0910, next to German occupied Narvik (5C:1010).
A little farther to the south, the Nor 1-6 Inf III 16Tr, which sea transported earlier to the point city/minor port of Mosjoen (5C:1622), admin moves northwards in the mud weather to mountain road Swedish border hex 5C:1518. Note that per the SoS Campaign for Norway initial conditions what might be called the Norwegian coast railway’s northernmost hex is at the point city/transportation line junction hex at 5C:2226 (Grong). Per the scenario’s initial conditions a road exists from Grong to point city/minor port Bodo, at hex 5C:1217. North of Bodo towards Narvik there exists in this scenario six rugged overland hexes with no road whatsoever along with four narrow straits hexsides. Transportation line markers from Wavell’s War are used to here designate the scenario’s deviations from the SoS game map’s indicated features.
One hex east of Trondheim (5C:2432), at clear terrain rail junction coast hex 5C:2431, where there is also a 1-cap permanent airstrip, the at start Nor 0-1-8 Cav II 3Tdl regular moves two hexes west along the Norwegian coastal rail line through the Trondheim hex and ends its move at at woods rail coast hex 5C:2433, adjacent to Trondheim to the west. In doing so it leaves the at start 1-6 Mtn III 5/13NT at 5C:2431 to hold the airstrip adjacent to Trondheim. From the Trondheim hex, the Nor 1-6 Mtn III 5/12St reinf moves inland one hex SE to adjacent woods coast hex 5C:2532; this maneuver will completely hem in the besieged and disrupted Ger 2-8* Mtn III B in the Trondheim hex, blocking all three possible DR routes. At the reference city/major port woods coast rail Trondheim hex, the following forces remain:
- Br 2-6 Inf X 148
- Nor govt capital marker
- Br Rodney 7-pt BB TF off-shore “at sea;” prepared for NGS
- Fr Cruiser-1 5-pt CL TF off-shore “at sea;” prepared for NGS
- disrupted Ger 2-8* Mtn III B, at red U-1.
At Trondheim the Allied player appears to easily have the makings of an 8 to 1 -3 combat in the combat phase, thanks to the powerful NGS of the Western Allied naval combat group off-shore in the hex. This combat also includes the unsupported attack factors of the Nor inf III, the mtn III, and the 0 attack strength cav II in the three adjacent land hexes.
From the Trondheim zone we focus next on the Oslo region in our description of the Apr I 40 Allied turn ground movement sub-phase activities. One of the preliminary things we do is study the GE Weather Table in order to better anticipate what the Apr II 40 Axis turn weather will be like in weather zone C, which is where the Oslo region is located; also in the C zone are the Bergen, Trondheim, SW Norwegian coastline, and Namsos (5C:2129) zones. A glance here tells us that there’s a 5 in 6 chance of Mud next turn in the C weather zone. A die roll of 1 means Clear weather.
Also, after reviewing Rule 7A-Railroads, the revised conclusion is that the Allied player has a Scandinavian Rail Net capacity this turn of 7 instead of 10. This is due to -2 for the 2 rail marshaling yard hits done by the Axis player last turn and a -1 beginning this turn for the Allied loss of the major port of Narvik. Technically the Axis player has a captured Scandinavian Rail Net capacity of 1 this turn, but it must be linked up with the captured rail marshaling yard at the Axis controlled Narvik major port hex, and so it appears for now to be a moot point.
At this instant the Axis player says that he’d like to perform a non-phasing air op. The Allied player says “Wait until I do an air op of my own that I have in mind now. As phasing player I have the immediate initiative.” The Allied player then does an air transfer mission of the Nor C.V A type air unit based in the Oslo hex to the 1-cap permanent airstrip located at adjacent wooded rough coast rail hex 10B:3908. With a sigh, the Axis player sends the Me 110C1 HF type air unit based at the 3-cap permanent airfield at 10B:5014, on the NE coast of the Danish peninsula, on the CAP mission over the Oslo hex (4007).
Then the Allied player rails the primo Nor 1-2-6* Mtn III 7Ag reinf at 10B:4116 in southern Norway to the 1-cap airstrip hex at 3908, adjacent to the Oslo hex to the NW. One wonders if, on their rail journey along the Allied controlled rail hexes, the Norwegian soldiers can see through the railway coach windows facing south any signs of German activity at the adjacent Norwegian coast hexes at 10B:4416 (Kristiansand) or 4415. At Oslo, the Nor 1-6 Inf III 2Jk reinf there expends 3 MPs in the Oslo hex to inflict one damage hit on the 6-cap Oslo partial city hex airbase, per Optional Rule 44B7-Variable Demolition Costs, and then spends 2 MPs using the transportation line as a road to end its move stacked with the 1-2-6* Mtn III 7Ag at the 1-cap permanent airstrip hex 3908, where the Nor C.V A type air unit is now based inoperative. Here the two Nor ground units stacked together then assemble into the Nor 2-3-6* Mtn X 3. Note that the Oslo hex already has a rail hit marker on it due to the rail marshaling yard bomb hits done to it by the Luftwaffe on the Apr I 40 Axis turn. This rail break here makes it harder this turn for the Norwegian army to maneuver in the important Oslo zone.
Next the Nor 1-6 Inf III 2/5 Ol reinf at 10:3604 and the Nor 0-1-8 Cav II 2 Op reinf at the adjacent Hamar point city hex 10B:3605 both rail to woods rain junction hex 4006, one hex due east of Oslo. The 0-1-8 Cav II 2 Op then expends 3 MPs at regular movement to move one hex to forest hex 4107, to the SE of Oslo, and then expends 3 MPs at regular movement to move another hex to clear terrain Oslofjord coast rail hex 10B:4108, to the SW of Oslo. The 1-6 Inf III 2/5 Ol remains at 4006, east of Oslo. Right afterwards the two Nor reinf ground units stacked at 10B:3906, the 1-6 Inf III 2/4Ak and the 0-1-8 Cav II 1Ak, both expend 3 regular MPs to move together west one hex to woods rail hex 3907, one hex NE of Oslo. The 1-6 Inf III 2/4Ak entrains and rails all the way to the Bergen hex. The 0-1-8 Cav II 1Ak also entrains and rails two hexes to guard Honefoss at 10B:3808. Then the Nor 1-6 Inf III 5/11Mo reinf at far-off Andalsnes (10B:2407) rails to 10B:3906, from where it spends it last 3 MPs regular moving to adjacent woods rail hex 10B:3907, to the NE of Oslo.
The Nor 1-6 Inf III 2/Vl reinf at Honefoss (10B:3808) then regular moves one hex west on the transportation line to woods rail hex 3809, where it expends 4 MPs to demolish the Drams River bridge per Optional Rule 44A1-Bridges. Similarly, the Nor 1-6 Inf III 1/3Tm reinf at 10B:4010 rails to woods coast rail hex 4008, where it also spends 4 MPs to demolish the Drams River bridge there. Although the temptation is great, the Norwegians decide not to venture any of their precious few ground units down to the southern Norway Skagerrak coastline to retake either Larvik (10B:4111) or Kristiansand (10B:4416).
Finally, the Nor 1-6 Inf III Of reinf at Fredrikstad (10B:4309) regular moves NW two hexes up the Oslofjord coast transportation line to clear terrain Oslofjord coast rail hex 10B:4108, SW of Oslo, stacking there with the Nor 0-1-8 Cav II 2Op. This hex, which is adjacent to Oslo, is important to the Norwegians not only because of its intrinsic CD with a strength of 2, but also because the Nor 1st Inf XX HQ unit reinf arrives there next turn. If the Axis player attacks this Norwegian stack next turn so much the better for the other imperiled Norwegian forces in the Oslo region. These light Norwegian forces in the Oslo region are as wispy as small dry leaves on a dry sidewalk. Only mud weather will save them from being blown away next turn.
By the end of the ground movement sub-phase the Norwegians have no forces remaining in the Oslo hex, which the Allied player in fact still controls. The Allied player has remaining in the Oslo hex an at start Nor “fort marker in coast hex” with an intrinsic CD strength of 1.
In the Bergen zone the stout Nor 1-2-6* Mtn III 4/10Fj reinf at mountain rail hex 10B:3014, two rail hexes east of Bergen (10B:3016), regular moves one hex west to forest rail hex 3015, adjacent to Bergen. This is to prevent any of the disrupted Ger Inf IIIs in the Bergen hex from DR’ing to there after combat. This supported Nor mtn III intends to join in from here the anticipated attack at the Bergen hex. And the Nor 1-6 Inf III 2/4Ak reinf railed into the Bergen hex from the faraway Oslo region gives the Allies 4 REs of ground units inside the Bergen hex. This will evidently allow them to utilize up to 17 of the 20 NGS strength points available there in the upcoming impending combat attack. This should be enough to give the Allied player a grand total of 24 attack factors for the combat at the Bergen hex, enough for a 6 to 1 -3, assuming 3 factored LW DAS tac factors added to the factored Ger ground unit defense total of 1, for a factored defense grand total of 4.
At the end of the ground movement sub-phase the following forces are found in the Bergen hex:
- Nor 1-6 Inf III 2/4Ak
- Nor 1-6 Inf III 9Hl
- Nor 1-6 Inf III 8Rl
- Br 3-6 Inf X 24G
- Warspite BB TF off-shore “at sea”
- Valiant BB TF off-shore “at sea”
- Repulse BC TF off-shore “at sea;” prepared for NGS
- Renown BC TF off-shore “at sea;” prepared for NGS
- Cruiser-1 CA TF off-shore “at sea;” prepared for NGS
- Cruiser-2 CA TF off-shore “at sea;” prepared for NGS
- Nor intrinsic CD w/ a strength level of 3
- 2 x disrupted and unsupported Ger Inf IIIs C, at red U-1.
Near the end of the ground movement sub-phase the Axis player sends the Me 109E F type air unit based at the 3-cap permanent airfield at 10B:3720 on the CAP mission over the Bergen hex.
By now I believe the Allies have expended all 7 their available Scandinavian Rail Net capacity this turn.
First comes the battle for Trondheim (5C2432). The Axis player has defending at this reference city coast woods hex the disrupted and isolated 2-8* Mtn III B, at red U-1. It has a defense factor of 1, halved for disruption. The U-1 doesn’t affect its defense factor. The Allied player attacks with an attack factor of 8, including 5 Br navy NGS factors in the hex, the Br 2-8 Inf X 148 in the hex and supported by the NGS, the two unsupported Nor 1-6 mtn IIIs in two adjacent hexes, and even the 0 attack strength Nor cav II in a third adjacent hex, which equates to a combat at 8 to 1 -3 (-2 for mud weather plus -1 for woods terrain). The die roll is a 5, which modifies to a 2: DH, which in this case is as good as a DE. The unfortunate and isolated Ger 2-8* Mtn III B is placed in the German Replacement Pool. After combat the Nor 1-6 Mtn III 5/12St at adjacent woods hex 2532 moves into the Trondheim hex.
Certain of the Bergen attack, the German player flies to the Bergen hex on the DAS mission the two Ju 88A1 type B (S code) air units based at the 3-cap permanent airfield at 10B:3720. The LW air units’ individual tac factor of 3 are halved to 1.5 due to the mud weather, for a combined total of 3 DAS factors. The two disrupted and unsupported Ger 2-6 inf IIIs combined defense factors total to 1, making a grand total of 4 Germandefense factors at the Bergen hex. The Allied player attacks with a total of 24 factored attack factors and with no GS, which equates to a 6 to 1 -3(-2 for mud weather plus -1 for rough terrain). The die roll is 4, which modifies to a 1: a DR. The two forlorn and disrupted 2-6 Inf IIIs C retreat onto the narrow spit of land found at the adjacent clear terrain coast hex at 10B:3117. After combat the Nor 1-2-6* Mtn III 4/10Fj advances into the Bergen hex. The two Ger Ju88A1 air units return to base to the 3-cap permanent airfield at 10B:3720, but for now the Me 109E air unit remains on its CAP mission over the Bergen hex.
1st Naval Movement Step
The Western Allied combat naval group comprising the Br Rodney BB TF and the Fr Cruiser-1 CL TF proudly leaves the Allied held Trondheim hex, which is also the current seat of the Norwegian govt capital marker. Per Rule 34B2-Ammo Depletion a U-3 supply status marker is placed on each TF to indicate its ammunition is depleted due to providing naval gunfire support in the previous combat phase. After rolling an 8 on the Danger Zones Chart, the combat naval group sails westwards and ends its 30th MP naval movement step allowance at all-sea hex 10B:2423.
The Br Cruiser-3 CL TF at all-sea hex 10B:2417, after rolling no contact on the Danger Zones Chart, moves 17 hexes west and enters the Orkney Islands holding box, where it spends its remaining 13 MP naval movement step allowance replenishing.
The Br combat naval group comprising the Furious CV TF (carrying the Sword 1 FAA air unit) and the Br Cruiser-4 CL TF at all-sea hex 10B:2619 first rolls a no contact on the Danger Zones Chart. Then this combat naval group spends 16 MPs sailing westwards to eventually enter the Orkney Islands holding box. There it spends its remaining 14 MP naval movement step allowance replenishing.
The Axis player then tells his opponent that he wishes to conduct a non-phasing naval strike air mission per Rules 20G2h-Naval Strike and 27B2-Naval Group against those naval units in the large Br combat naval group off-shore “at sea” in the Bergen hex which provided NGS the previous combat phase and which have not yet moved. The Axis player intends to fly to the Bergen hex the He 111H4 B type (S code) air unit based at the 1-cap permanent airfield at woods coast hex 10B:4415, next to Kristiansand. After some rules quibbling he does so, and with his He 111H4 tac factor halved to a 1 for mud weather rolls on the “1” column of the Bombing Table, with a +1 modifier for being a S code. The Axis player manages to roll a 2: a Miss. The He 111H4 air unit returns to base at the airstrip at 10B:4415 and lands inoperative.
After rolling the dice and getting a 6 on the Danger Zones Chart, the Allied player then moves the large combat naval group “at sea” at the Bergen hex one hex west to the Norwegian isle of Sorta hex at 10B:3019, when the Axis player says he wants to attempt a non-phasing naval group reaction attempt per Rule 28B-Reaction Movement. Those Br TFs that provided the naval gunfire support in the previous combat phase have U-3 supply status markers on them. Rule 34B2-Ammo Depletion says “An ammo-depleted TF has its NGS strength halved when providing NGS in subsequent combat phases.” Right now this doesn’t make sense to me. Could the intended meaning of this rule be that the affected TFs have their naval combat strengths halved in naval combat done in subsequent naval movement steps, prior to replenishment? Using the Success Table with no modifiers the Axis player rolls a 4: Failure. The frustrated Kriegsmarine combat naval group remains inherit at all-sea hex 10B:4320, where it’s been the entire Allied turn; and without further ado the Allied player happily sails his large combat naval group westwards 22 MPs to the Orkney Islands holding box, where it spends its last 8 MPs of the naval movement step replenishing.
2nd Naval Movement Step
After rolling no contact on the Danger Zones Chart, the combat naval group comprising the Br Rodney BB TF and the Fr Cruiser-1 CL TF spends 11 MPs sailing west and enters the Orkney Islands holding box, where it spends 19 MPs replenishing.
The rest of the Allied naval units in the Orkney Islands holding box finish their replenishments per Rule 34B-Naval Supply Considerations. At the Admiralty there is talk of perhaps sending a big naval task force out to sea again this turn to go after the hitherto ineffective Kriegsmarine naval group at 10B:4320 and sink the whole Nazi German fleet; others scheme to have a large Allied non-phasing naval combat group at sea maybe somewhere in the North Sea in the Apr II 40 Axis turn, with the intentions of thereby frustrating any German naval operations in that sea. Some push for a more modest mine laying operation somewhere on the southern Norwegian coast, say at the point city/standard port Haugesund, at 10B:3319. But in the end the British navy decides that it has already accomplished plenty this turn, and that the wisest course now might be that they aim to consolidate and preserve their naval forces both for the defense of what they’ve won this turn and as a powerful reaction weapon against German counter thrusts certain to be occurring in the near future.
3rd Naval Movement Step
The Br Rodney BB TF and the Fr Cruiser-1 CF TF each spend 11 MPs finishing their replenishments at the Orkney Islands holding box.
4th and 5th Naval Movement Step
All Allied naval forces in the game remain at the Orkney Islands holding box; by now all Allied TFs are replenished.
Ground Movement Sub-Phase (c/m units only):
The Allies have no c/m units in play to move in the exploitation phase. But both sides do some air ops before the end of the Allied turn.
First however, per Rule15-Breakdowns/Assemblies the Nor 1-2-6* Mtn III 4/10Fj and the 1-6 Inf III 4Ak stacked at the Bergen hex assemble into the 2-3-6* Mtn III 4.
Then the Br Well 1C and Whit 5 NB type air units in the Bomber Command holding box do the air transfer mission to the Orkney Islands holding box. Because of the distances indicated on the British Game Chart, the Bomber Command holding box must represent the London zone.
At the end of the exploitation phase the LW Me 109 E air unit on the CAP mission over the Bergen hex returns to base at the 3-cap permanent airfield at 10B:3720, on the SW coastline of Norway adjacent to Allied controlled Stavanger.
The Me 110C1 air unit on the CAP mission over the ineffective Kriegsmarine combat naval group still lingering “at sea” at North Sea hex 10B:4320 returns to base at the reference city airbase at Aalborg (10B:5515) in NE Denmark.
The Me 110C1 air unit on the CAP mission over the Oslo hex returns to base at the 3-cap permanent airfield at hex 10B:5014, on the NE coast of the Danish peninsula.