Saturday, July 9, 2016

BBB Battle of Tacna (with Proxies)

Our good friend from Denmark, Morten's is visiting, so we decided to run a fast game of BBB. After discussion we settled on the Battle of Tacna (also known as the Battle of the Alliance Heights) for the War of the Pacific. Fought in 1880 this battle was the decisive battle of the war seeing the destruction of the Peruvian and Bolivian regular armies and Chilean dominance in the pacific littoral. Peru would continue fighting, but Bolivia de facto, even if not de jure, dropped out of the war. The battle it self sees a better quality Chilean army storming gentled slopped heights from a comparable in numbers, but worse quality allied army.

Chilean Hymn

I took command of the Allies (later Doruk came and I gave him the southern flank) while Mortens and Onur took command of the Chileans. Some terrible artillery dice in the first turns permitted the Chileans to come close. Morterns and Onur dispensed with niceties and lunched a concentrated attack on the north flank and center of the allied position. They broke trhough and depsite attempts to turn the flank and counter-attack the lesser quality allied units could not make it. We called the game at the end of the Turn 7 (out of 9 total turns) with the Chileans holding three objectives and the allied armies shattered to pieces.  We proxied the armies (Chilea=Russians 1877. Peru: US ACW, Bolivia: Ottomans 1877-1912)

map of movements. Chilean blue, Allied Red

My main mistakes were: 1) Overestimating the potential of my artillery and MGs to stop the Chileans 2) bad use of reserve 3) mis-judging the time for spoiling attacks. Friction hit both sides but in conjunction with my bad calls it was catastrophic for the Allies. Still we enjoyed the scenario. Playing the Chileans in this scenario is probably the best way to learn to make assaults in BBB, as they have little choice but to make assaults.

Turn 1, the whole field, Alliance heights to the right.

The allied armies deployed

The Bolivian National Anthem

The Chilean forces arrive on the field (on the cardboard are reinforcements for Turn 2 and 3)

The view from the Bolivian (Ottoman Turkish) machine gun and infantry positions.

The Chilean masses advance

Chilean artillery silenced retreating. In the background the Alliance heights.

The punch! Chilean masses overrunning the heights!

Chilean (Russian) cavalry in front, Infantry masses behind.

The Chileans have broken through the center. Bolivian and Peruvian units try to contain them.

The battle of the central heights. Peruvians (US ACW) holding the line against massed Chileans.

Peruvians refusing the flank trying to contain the Chilean masses.

Chilean Cavalry charging spent Bolivian (Ottoman infantry) as the Bolivians try to take the northern flank back.

The immense struggle at the center. Two peruvian untis vs. four Chilean ones.

Spent, ammo low, dispruted, many units had more markers than bases as the brutal frontal assault took its toll.
Situation at end of Turn 7. Chileans have cleared the northern and central Alliance Heights. The south flank holds, bu the allied armies are shattered beyond repair. 

Peruvian National Anthem

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