Though the broad strokes of the second week of campaigning echo those of week one, the overall victory Allied victory was not nearly so convincing. With Axis forces beginning to claw back some control (and continuing to do so in the third week of campaigning, at the time of writing), it’s still all to play for as we reach the halfway point of the global campaign.

In War Stories, we recap the action theatre by theatre, featuring some of your tabletop highlights. You can share your experiences directly on the dedicated Operation Critical Hit Facebook Group, or make sure to submit a description of your game and upload some photos when reporting your games on the Operation Critical Hit website. Without further ado…

Northwest Europe

Once again, Europe proved the most popular theatre for reporting games. Week Two very much followed the pattern established last week, with the Allies dominating in the European theatre. Their superiority was not quite as complete as the previous week, however, with the Axis forces significantly narrowing the Allies’ margin of victory in Bolt Action, and even achieving an equal number of victories at sea. Their efforts were not enough to snatch victory, with Allied air superiority increased as well with a strong showing in Blood Red Skies, it was six hexes for the Allies, and just one for the Axis forces. Can the Allies keep their winning streak going as the campaign progresses?

Brave Italian Bersaglieri ran into a spot of bother at the hands of this Churchill Crocodile tank. Report submitted by Diversitas.
US Airborne dominated in a game of sectors, destroying the majority of their German opponents. Game report submitted by Miniaturas.
A short-range firefight between British Airborne and German Fallschirmjäger in Europe. A late German dash across open ground to secure map quarters resulted in an Axis victory. Report submitted by BenC8194.
A British force achieves a win, well supported by a Cromwell and Staghound, despite the efforts of enemy Panzerfausts and a PzII Luchs. Report submitted by Dandare58.
Action from Spalding Wargames Club! British paras were tasked with taking a small but vital bridge over a river. Despite being outnumbered, the brave Paras pushed on and unleashed a deadly flamethrower payload on the German defenders. Not even reinforcing German armour could prevent the bridge from falling into Allied hands.
Despite broken German armour littering the streets, Axis forces were able to secure vital crossroads from opposing US forces. Report submitted by Kiralyfc.
The late arrival of German reinforcements allowed this US force to dominate a flank, with minimal losses and sweep in to secure a vital objective. Allied win submitted by ekalther.
Here we have a rematch between Kiarlyfc’s Germans and Piksie’s US armies, resulting in total destruction of the Allied forces.
A mixed squadron of British Spitfires and Hurricanes took on a mixed squadron of Luftwaffe Bf109s and Fw190s. A close game eventually saw a Spitfire tail a 109 to land a kill shot, enough to force the Luftwaffe to bug out of the fight. Report submitted by BenC8194.
Bronekater made good use of the Week One Victory bonus for the Allies, using the Restricted Airfields card to prevent one of the Axis aircraft from even deploying. Their subsequent numerical superiority helped the Allies to achieve victory.
The Kriegsmarine suffered a defeat in Victory at Sea, with British Destroyers sinking a German cruiser, and German firepower wasted on the nimble Allied vessels rather than the more vulnerable aircraft carrier. Report submitted by VJeske.

The Pacific

The Pacific theatre was very much the other side of the coin from Europe, with Axis forces capitalizing on their strong start and once again securing five hexes in the region, whilst the Allies only secured one (as compared to four last week). Allied air superiority was not nearly enough to diminish Axis forces’ efforts on land and at sea (there must be something about those Japanese torpedoes in Victory at Sea). In a reversal of the events of the previous week, Axis forces secured more Bolt Action victories. So long as the Allies continue to have such a strong holding in Europe, it becomes ever more crucial that the Axis can maintain this momentum in the Pacific, to counterbalance to overall results.

A hard-fought battle across rice paddies and dense jungle saw an Australian force encircled and ultimately destroyed by a Japanese Special Naval Landing Force. Report submitted by Eugene Burger.
This USMC beat a Japanese force in this Guadalcanal-based game, despite losing their own lieutenant to a FUBAR result. Report submitted by tOMGcornwell.
A decisive victory for the Imperial Japanese Army, utilising Order Dice advantage to charge and wipe out their opponents. A lone suicide anti-tank man also managed to take down a US Sherman. Report submitted by wanhaherrat.
An Imperial Japanese resupply convoy was set upon by US PT boats and a Gato-class submarine, with the escorting Fubuki-class destroyer powerless to prevent the demise of an oil tanker and a tramp freighter. An Allied win, reported by VJeske.

The Eastern Front

Axis forces similarly put in a strong showing on the Eastern Front, claiming much of the Northern territories, as they had in the previous week, this time securing all Bolt Action hexes. The Allies didn’t go down without a fight, and achieved total air dominance in games of Blood Red Skies, in a reversal of last week’s results.

Germans took on the Soviets on the Eastern Front in this game submitted by XYFER GAMES. A hard-fought game saw the village of Vellykyi, on the outskirts of Odessa, largely obliterated, but after the smoke cleared, in the hands of the Germans.
The Royal Hungarian Airforce saw off their Soviet opponents, losing just one Bf-109 in the process. Axis win submitted by Petyo.
Battle of the twin-engined fighters over the skies of the Eastern Front. German BF110s were seen off by Soviet Pe-3s, with a little help from the bonus Restricted Airfields card. Reported by Joy704.

The Mediterranean

The Mediterranean is the most hotly contested of all the theatres (and not just because of the climate!). Though the ocean hexes went uncontested this week, overall, there were just three points between the two sides, with the Allies just clinching victory. The Mediterranean much epitomises a route to overall victory, it would only have taken a couple of games of any system, attributed to the right hexes, to cause a big swing in the overall balance of power.

Indian and Canadian forces took on German Afrika Korps. The Canadians paid a heavy toll, assaulted en masse by the Germans. However, this left the centre vulnerable and the Indian forces claimed overall victory. Report by lordlitle.
A protracted fight saw neither side gain the upper hand until late on, when the British Humber armoured Car found the mark on an opposing Afrika Korps Sd.Kfz 222. With casualties mounting thereafter, the Germans withdrew from the field. Report submitted by howard998.

Get Involved

Things are very much in the balance halfway through week three of Operation Critical Hit. Because overall victory is determined by the control of more hexes in a theatre, over air, land and sea, the scales can very quickly tip. This really does mean that every battle matters and it’s not too late to join up and make your own mark on the campaign!

Operation Critical Hit Special Figure – Redcap, Corps of Military Police

Play at participating stores, and you’ll also have a chance to get a hold of the campaign’s special miniature, Redcap, Corps of Military Police. Alternatively, you can get this figure for free when purchasing any of our WWII-based starter sets from the Warlord Games Webstore for the duration of the campaign.

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