Deelen Airfield

Deelen Airfield was a German controlled air base in the Netherlands during Operation Market Garden that was bombed extensively in preparation for the airborne landings and subsequently Luftwaffe air operations were suspended.

The following scenario is a fictional engagement between elements of the Axis Panzer Lehr Division and the Allies 6th Armored Division. The force size scope of the battle is battalion sized for the Germans and task force sized for the Americans.

For the Axis player, they start in the north with II Bn 130 Pz Regt, a force consisting of 439 personnel, 69 armored fighting vehicles and an armor rating of 995. The individual tank companies are equipped with the PzKfw V Ausf G Panther and its deadly 7.5 cm L70 main gun.

For the Allies player, they start in the south with TF Kennedy, led by Lt. Col. Chester E. Kennedy, a force consisting of 526 personnel, 76 armored fighting vehicles and an armor rating of 723. The individual tank companies are equipped with a mix of M4 Sherman’s ranging from 75-76 mm main guns, Sherman Jumbos as well as one 105 mm howitzer equipped variant.

The scenario is playable from both sides and each features a "Favor Us" reinforcement schedule that adds the following forces: for the Axis player, they pick up I Bn 130 Pz Regt (439 personnel, 69 AFV and an armor rating of 793) while the Allied player picks up TF Brown (628 personnel, 66 AFV and an armor rating of 380). Both will arrive on Day Two between the hours of 06:00-09:00.

The scenario features a cropped map file named Deelen Airfield that is to be installed in the users Maps folders within the game structure (usually C:/Matrix Games/Battles from the Bulge/Maps). The scenario file is to be placed in the Scenarios/My Scenarios folder. The cropped map is based on the stock Arnhem map that shipped with the game so there should not be any issues with pathing, etc. for the AI.

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The following is a condensed AAR of the scenario with my playing as the Allies using the Favor Us reinforcement schedule. This is a post-as-I-play review and as such I do not know how this will end as I begin...


D01 15:00 Task Force Kennedy is ordered to attack the airfield coming west to east. This approach is chosen with the assumption that the Axis forces arrayed in the northeast corner of the map will utilize the main highway running north to south to reach the objective.


D01 18:00 D company is moving through the broken woods towards the airfield while the entire Axis force appears to have amassed themselves on the eastern edge of the landing strips. This is the downside of my taking an indirect and slower route to the objective, however the Germans are "right where I want them" in terms of the leverage I intend to employ to knock them off the target.


D02 00:00 This is one part of the game (current build public beta 4.5.264) that drives me nuts: forces abandoning their assigned tasks due to lack of time. In this instance, I have to reassign an attack on the airfield and manually bump the end time to the scenario end time.


D02 06:00 TF Kennedy is getting nowhere with the attack on the airfield. The Panzer Lehr units are doing a fine job of not only holding their own, but causing almost the entire Allied force to retreat back towards their assault forming-up point.


The view from a Panther tank gunners sights as they take on a company of Sherman tanks cresting the ridge (Iron Front: Liberation 1944).


D02 07:58 TF Brown shows up on the battlefield is immediately ordered to attack the center of the Axis battalion sitting on the eastern edge of the landing strips. Hopefully this fresh force can unseat the Germans from the airfield so the Allies can take control of the objective.


D02 12:00 With the untimely surrender of A and B companies of TF Kennedy, that force has effectively ceased to be combat effective. It is entirely up to TF Brown to save the day.


D02 18:00 A and B companies from TF Brown have breached the objective and are engaging the Germans who appear to be split with forces on both sides of the Allied thrust (this could work to my advantage in driving them off the airfield).


The Panther tank is overwhelmed by Allied Sherman tanks and the crew is forced to bail out (Iron Front: Liberation 1944).


D03 00:00 TF Brown manages to very briefly remove the Germans from the objective and pick up one Victory Point from the Occupation pool of points available. I will give this effort until 6:00 AM to see if it can regain and retain the objective, and if not I will order them to attack on a broader front to keep the Axis out.


D03 06:00 I order TF Brown to reform on the airfield and attack to the southeastern end of the landing strips with a frontage of 1,500 m and a depth of 600 m with everything maxed out.


D03 12:00 Deelen Airfield is back in Allied control for the moment as TF Brown pushes the Panzer Lehr units south and off of the landing strips. With no units held in reserve, I am hoping that this push will be enough to win the scenario.


D03 15:00 After Action Report - the scenario ends and the Allies pick up a Marginal Victory, 61 Victory Points to 28 for the Axis forces. Considering that this was two Allied task forces going up against Panzer Lehr Panthers in crack shape, I am actually kind of please with this result.

I am not pleased with the lopsided personnel losses (428 compared to only 195 for the Germans); however it didn't help out when TF Kennedy went to hell in a hand basket and started to surrender.


The Review Final Situation view: TF Brown did the job and saved the day for the Allies. If only I employed TF Kennedy more effectively, I could have achieved the objective earlier and accumulated some more Occupation Victory Points, perhaps enough to swing the balance in favor of a Decisive Victory.

Matrix Forum Post

5 comments:

  1. Just ran through it once and ended in a draw. I fell for what I am assuming was a false unit report for Lehr battalion on the highway to the north of TF Kennedy. I rushed to pen them up there only to have them pop up on the airfield behind me. Spent rest of the time trying to win back airfield with an attack from the west and north.

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  2. No matter what side I play and orders I issue, it seems as if the AI commander on the other side always beats me to the airfield.

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    Replies
    1. My first run ended in a draw. I am really liking these smaller scenarios. I am going to try the Favor option this morning to expand the play.

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  3. I added some alternative game screen shots to make the post somewhat more interesting.

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