So far, the campaign has consisted of patient sapping activity, punctuated by short bursts of intense combat, against a backdrop of attritional artillery fire. The Japanese have been preparing an assault on 203-Metre Hill with great patience, and after seven weeks, the battle can begin!
General Nogi orders an assault on the hill. Fushimi's Division detonates two mines and launches a full divisional frontal assault on the heavily-fortified Russian positions. A counterattack by the Tamirsky regiment leads to it being all but annihilated, although it successfully disrupts the Japanese second wave. A dawn banzai charge is repulsed - with General Fushimi shot down at the head of his men - but the Russians begin to withdraw anyway shortly after, since heavy siege artillery makes their position untenable. The bloodied Japanese cautiously follow up into the ruins of the position.
|This picture shows the dispositions of the armies. The Russians deploy a column of pioneers ready to counterattack, while the Karelsky Regiment man the barricades. The Japanese launch four regimental columns directly up the hill.|
|The Tamirsky Regiment departs just minutes after the first mine is detonated under 174-Metre Hill.|
|But the Japanese quickly recover, and caught in the open, the Tamirsky Regiment is almost wiped out.|
|The Japanese form up a super-column, collecting every last man together for one last almighty push up the hill. Despite supporting fire which begins to tell on the crucial MG positions, the column suffers very heavy casualties.|
|The Japanese column retreats, and Fushimi is killed by one of the last 'spillover' shots. A suitably cinematic ending!|
A big thanks to all the gamers, to Paul for his participation and enthusiasm in some very characterful orders, and Mike for stepping in and playing as the Japanese. So, what did you all think? Comments below!