Sicily II – Western Sicily

The first Scenario in the OCS game Sicily II is about General Patton’s drive on Palermo in western Sicily. The victory conditions require the Americans to take three of the four objective locations, i.e. the ports of Palermo, Trapani, and Marsala, and the Italian supply entry hex at Cefalu. It is an introductory scenario to get used to the basic rules. The Italians get little to do, although on hindsight I might have swarted the US occupying the supply entry hex in the north-eastern corner of the playing area.

The game was special in that virtually all Italian costal defence units chose to fight it out. The campaign started with an overwelmingly successful naval barrage annihilating the garrison near Capo Bianco.

The majority of the US ground forces race across central Sicily driven by their commander George Patton. Turn 1 sees the American 3rd Infantry Division  and CCB / 2nd Armoured Division fighting south of Palermo. At the time Patton was furious as he was cut off from the drive towards Messina as all the highways leading to eastern Sicily were priorised for the use by the British 8th Army. Thus when it comes to opional combat outcomes I went for a step los and advance if at all possible.

Palermo falls to the Americans on turn 2. The US 3rd Infantry Division has by now suffered 50% casualties in several hard fought combats across central Sicily and in the assault on Palermo.

Meanwhile CCA / 2nd Armoured Division has fought its way to the western tip of Sicily. Its main objective is to take the town and Port of Marsala. The first assault into the city results in a repulse and heavy casualties on both sides. Each force loses a step.

Harrassed by US naval barrages the Italian 43rd Regiment / 202nd Costal Defense Division nonetheless doggedly defends the city and port. The last combat here will be key to the campaign outcome.

With the city and port of Palermo secured CCB / 2nd Armoured Division races west to take the Italian supply entry objective hex. The fighting will cost them an armoured battle group but finally they will sucessfully take their objective. The Italian Mixed A battalion is in supply but out of fuel and therefore cannot intervene.

With two objectives (Palermo and the supply entry location) taken the decision is down to the fighting in Marsala. With the assistance of the US NAVY destroyers the Americans finally push into the city and destroy the Italian garrison. The last few die rolls secure an US victory.

This scenario is quite enjoyable. It plays fast and you really can get used to the rules. I recommend to play it solo as for the Italian side there are very few decisions to make.

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