Turn 2 – The Japs shelled my Philippine unit and moved up more forces. They also strafed with an army fighter in range of an AA unit. Dumb. Time is of the essence and the Japs should have toasted the exposed native unit.
On my turn I was able to make four attacks on the Jap Recon armored car and destroyed it. Recon vehicles are very hard to destroy. You attack, they take damage, and they drive away. Even though I hit it with an AT gun, my only tank (a light-tank Sheridan), I still had to hit it with infantry units to destroy it. The Japs will have to move regular troops up on my left flank to develop the position. My commando and engineer units (in green on the screen shot below) moved towards their next bridge blowing target, and my fighter almost destroyed the Jap army fighter.
I made the most of my counter-attacks – I hope. I’m concerned on the left flank that my units may be exposed. To the South not on the screen shot the AI controlled US troops move towards Bataan.
Turn 3 – The Japs came close to destroying the Philippine unit which retreated after heavy damage. The 1 health remaining Jap Army Fighter flew off in the direction of the airbase.
Turn 3 USA: I reinforced the Philippine unit but did not attempt to withdraw it. I blew the bridge so it cannot easily cross the river. Next turn it will probably die to buy time for the US withdrawal. I rolled the dice and sought out the Jap Fighter with my 50% damaged P-40. Found it! DIE DIE DIE!
I rest my forces on the left flank. I reinforced where needed to regain full strength. Just off the south edge is the AT unit behind the infantry in the town. If an armored or motorized unit attacks the US infantry in the town the AT gun will fire in defense. Boom! I captured the bridge blowing in the screenshot. That Engineering unit is getting a lot of practice blowing bridges.
Turn 4 – The Japs annihilate the Philippine unit and advance to the river on my right flank. On the left flank they have brought a bomber into the area and infantry are fording the river unopposed. The US moved the engineers onto the bridge on the far-right flank. Charges are being set and it goes boom on turn 5. The commando unit is on the bridge in the center of my lines. Charges are set but the bridge will not be blown until I get my forces on the other side of the river.
Turn 5 & 6: The Japs are strangely quiet. My units are not moving out of prepared positions to see if the Japs have crossed the first river. Intelligence reports the Japs are moving up heavy artillery. I blew another bridge at the end of turn 5. [I keep hearing Queen singing “another one bites the dust.”]
Turn 6 I achieved the first secondary victory condition. A Jap bomber is hammering units around San Fernando. I take a risk and pull my infantry out of Angeles to counter-attack the Jap engineering unit hitting my bunker position. Translated, this was a dumb idea. Like the rest of humanity, I blame someone else. “The Lieutenant takes the initiative over the objections of his grizzled, China Marine Gunny. What could go wrong?”
Turn 7: Jap Hammer Drops – I made some very quick F9 taps and caught the Jap attack as it developed. Armor had already crossed the river. It dashed across from east to west seizing the town and the bridge. Then another Japanese tank and two infantry units advanced. Next, two Jap infantry units forded the river and attacked the bunker.
US Forces had to beat a hasty retreat. I formed a new line on both flanks. On the right flank my troops are in position to get to the other side of the river so the bridge can be blown. On the left flank I’ve closed the gap between the river and the end of the board with the AT gun supporting the two infantry units and the light US tank. In the center both Philippine units are on the other side of the jungle covered by my only US Heavy Infantry unit. Off map to the South I’m bringing around the engineer unit to act as a mobile reserve.
Turn 8 – Jap Advance Continues: On the left flank the US Infantry unit is now led by the Gunny. The Lt was an idiot, but he was a brave idiot. The Lt. held a heavy machine gun post to the bitter end allowing the remnants of the unit to survive for a few more hours. The last bunker on the river is almost surrounded, heavily damaged, and will fall next turn. On the left flank the US troops are as ready as they are going to get for the Jap onslaught. On the right flank only one unit is on the other side of the bridge. The commando unit is ready to blow the bridge at any moment.