Scenario: Monster in the Road – The Battle of Raseiniai

With the recent release of ‘Tank War’ – there are a whole slew of new aspects for Bolt Action players to explore – but we couldn’t resist sneaking-in a little something extra…

Jon Russell – organiser of Warlord Games Day USA, and all-round ‘hero’ of ours, who tackles all manner of projects behind the scenes, has sent us through a scenario which he’s been working on with some of his gaming mates over in the States…

It goes without saying that this is an optional scenario – designed as a bit of fun, and a new challenge – please by all means give it a try and let us know what you think!

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BACKGROUND

WHAT: Battle of Raseiniai

WHERE: Crossroads in front of Raseiniai

WHEN: 23–27 June 1941

The Battle of Raseiniai was a tank battle fought between the elements of the German 4th Panzer Group and the Soviet 3rd Mechanized Corps & 12th Mechanized Corps in Lithuania 75 km northwest of Kaunas. This was an attempt by the commander of the Northwestern Front to contain and destroy German troops that had crossed the Neman River (Nemunas). The result of the battle was the almost complete destruction of Soviet armored forces of the Northwestern Front, clearing the way for the continued German offensive towards the crossings of the Daugava River (Western Dvina). This was one of the major battles during the initial phases of Operation Barbarossa known in Soviet history as the Border Defensive Battles (22–27 June 1941) as part of the larger Baltic Strategic Defensive Operation.

It was during this battle a single KV-2 heavy tank became stuck at a crossroads in front of Raseiniai and managed to cut off elements of the 6th Panzer Division. The division had established bridgeheads on the Dubysa. The monstrous vehicle stalled the Division’s advance for a full day while being attacked by a variety of anti-tank weapons, until it finally ran out of ammunition.* This scenario recreates the desperate action of the KV-2 holding the crossroad along with several supporting units protecting the monster. They are attempting to hold on long enough for units tasked to relieve them to arrive and together they can push back the Fascist Invaders.

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*General Erhard Raus was the Officer in Command of 6th Panzer Division’s Kampfgruppe. This was the unit held up by the lone vehicle and he disagrees with this story line. He says the vehicle was damaged by several shots from an 88 Anti-Tank Gun firing at the vehicle from behind while it was distracted by Panzer 35(t) tanks from Panzer Battalion 65. The crew was killed by grenades from a Pioneer engineer unit who pushed the grenades through two holes made by the gun while the turret had started moving again. The other five or six shots apparently did not penetrate completely. The crew had remarkably only been stunned by the shots which had entered the turret. Afterwards they were buried nearby with honors by the German soldiers of from the unit they had held up.

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RUSSIAN INFORMATION

COMRADE! Mother Russia is turning to you to push back the Fascist invaders and to protect her and all you hold dear! If you fail the Nazis will rape and pillage our land and people all the way to Moscow. You have the needed personnel and weapons to accomplish this easy task, we know you will do your duty. The party will accompany you and help you meet your destiny. URRAH!

Set Up: The Russian player sets up five of their units on the board in the highlighted areas. One of these units MUST be the KV-2. The KV-2 is placed on the board at the indicated location. The rest of the Russian units enter as reserves beginning on turn 2.

Army List (1,000 Points): The Russian army list must be taken from the Theatre Selection Section on page 62 of Armies of the Soviet Union. Here is a suggested list.

Army List

1 FREE Inexperienced Rifle Squad – Consists of 1 NCO armed with a Rifle, 11 Rifles and all armed with anti-tank grenades

1 Inexperienced Senior Lieutenant

1 Inexperienced LMG Squad – Consists of 1 NCO armed with a SMG, 7 Rifles and one LMG plus Rifle-armed Loader

1 Inexperienced LMG Squad – Consists of 1 NCO armed with a SMG, 7 Rifles and one LMG plus Rifle-armed Loader

1 Immobilized Inexperienced KV-2

 

RESERVES

1 Inexperienced Commissar with two rifle-armed men

1 Inexperienced LMG Squad – Consists of 1 NCO armed with a SMG, 7 Rifles and one LMG plus Rifle-armed Loader. All armed with anti-tank grenades

1 Regular NKVD Squad – Consists of 1 NCO armed with a SMG, 8 Rifles and one LMG plus Rifle-armed Loader. All are Fanatics.

1 Inexperienced HMG

1 Inexperienced MMG

1 Inexperienced Medium Mortar with Spotter

1 Anti-Tank Team consisting of the following units:

1 Inexperienced Anti-Tank Rifle Team

1 Inexperienced “Tank Hunters” Anti-Tank Team armed with Molotov Cocktails

1 Inexperienced Dog Mine Anti-Tank Team

SPECIAL RULES

ANARCHY from page 61 in the Russian Armies book is in effect.

 

OBJECTIVE

Prevent the Germans from exiting the board from either road from your table edge.

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GERMAN INFORMATION

SCHNELL! SCHNELL! You must make short work of this minor inconvenience and get back on the timetable – your Fuhrer demands it! Every minute lost gives the Ivans more time to put up his pitiful resistance, keep the pressure on and by the end of August we will all be celebrating in Red Square. PANZERS MARSCH!

Army List

The German player enters the board from the highlighted areas.

Army List (1000 Points): The German army list must be taken from the Theatre Selection Section on page 73 of Armies of Germany. Here is a suggested list (totals out at 999).

1 Regular First Lieutenant plus two men

1 Regular Heer Squad – Consists of 1 NCO armed with a SMG, 7 Rifles and one LMG plus Rifle-armed Loader

1 Regular Heer Squad – Consists of 1 NCO armed with a SMG, 7 Rifles and one LMG plus Rifle-armed Loader

1 Regular Heer Pioneer – Consists of 1 NCO armed with a SMG, 2 Rifles, 3 SMGs, one LMG plus Rifle-armed Loader, and one Flamethrower plus rifle-armed assistant.

2 Regular MMG

1 Regular Medium Mortar with Spotter

2 Regular Sd.Kfz 251/1 half-tracks

1 Regular Panzer 38(t) medium tank

OR

Drop the half-tracks and one of the MMGs for 1 Regular 88mm Flak Dual Purpose AA/AT gun with a Regular Sd.Kfz 7 half-track for a total of 1,000 points.

PRIMARY OBJECTIVE

Exit four of your units via the road off the Russian side of the table edge.

SECONDARY OBJECTIVE

KILL THE MONSTER!

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TABLE SET UP

Map Battle of Raseiniai

 

This is not a ‘MUST SET UP THIS WAY’ Map! It is just a general guideline – use what terrain you have. The bottom line is just to have fun with this scenario without worrying too much about howe many millimetres the cottage is the the cornfield or how straight the road is!

Game Length: 6 Turns Plus. At the end of the sixth turn roll a dice, if it is 1-3 the game is over, 4-6 go one more turn (if so the game ends at the end of the additional turn)

So – grab a copy of ‘Tank War,’ ready your troops, and prepare yourself for a little Armoured Fury! 

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