Having been bounced in game 5 of the campaign the initiative now lay with the beastly Hun and, always ready to kick a man when he’s down, the rotter took advantage of the opportunity to launch a significant counter-attack.
I set up the terrain as you can see below. This isn’t the precise location where Game 4 was played, but it is a nearby route through the same rocky passes.
As the attackers the Germans rolled 8 for support, a good roll, and whilst that allowed me List 5 support (4 plus an extra one as my Colonel is still looking after me) I took the decision to fall back and not contest this battlefield. With the lack of terrain in the open desert, and having seen how badly a fighting withdrawal can go in a desert setting I left the battlefield uncontested and withdrew, falling back on the old German main defensive position around Sheik al Fak. I am now wishing that I had consolidated on that position once I first captured it as it would now present a solid strongpoint which Jerry may baulk at. But I hadn’t. In my desire to keep the enemy wrong footed I had pushed on.
Of course the Germans now have a decision to make as well. The position at Sheik al Fak is a strong one and if they attack it and suffer heavy casualties it could weaken them to the point where I then drive right over the top of them and seize the Oasis at Kharmal. However, if he were to take Sheik al Fak in style it may well spell the end of my campaign in that we have both had our only replacements for this campaign and every man lost now will be irreplaceable. My failure in Game 5 has presented both of us with some interesting choices to make. As it stands the initiative is with the Germans so I will just have to wait and see what he does.
There is always a tremendous sense of satisfaction seeing the printer’s proofs for a new set of rules; it usually spells the end of a long period of hard work for me as editor getting everything print ready, as well as producing all the graphics and artwork. This time, however, it was really something special.