Friday 19 February 2016

The Bridge at Schweinbereich, an AAR

Well, after the Germans defenders had deployed first my plan was already in ruined. It had survived even getting my models on the table. The minefield at the far end of the bridge meant that my flying column of M5s and infantry in an M3 would most likely be destroyed before they got anywhere near the village. I desperately needed a mine clearance option. The irony here was that my first list had included a combat engineer team in an M3, instead of the armoured infantry, specifically to clear mines, but later I forgot their primary role and swapped them later in favour of the extra firepower of the armoured infantry, and now I couldn’t clear the road. Plan A would not work, I would have to improvise and adapt on the hoof for a Plan B.

So, my fast light armour went into reserve, with the infantry now attacking as the first wave, second platoon north and first platoon south of the bridge, which I would largely ignore. The armour, when it arrived, would now have to provide extra suprressing fire and cross the river by wading. The advance was going to be far slower that I planned, and I wouldn’t be making best use of the smoke cove. Still, if the infantry moved fast, then they should cross the open ground before the smoke cleared and left them exposed to a lot of MG fire in the open. The smoke was lasting 5 turns, so I was in with a chance.

My infantry set off, wading north of the river and paddling like crazy to the south. My M45 meat-chopper had no targets in range (rubbish deployment) so I needed to move it, it hitched up to its jeep to get to a better firing position. My CO called in his mortars on the PRTP, and destroyed the horse and limber tow for the anti-tank gun, whose dug-in position saved it (several times during the game, althoug it never fired a shot). 

In the smoke and darkness the  enemy’s return fire wasn’t too bad, only a few pins. So far, so good…

I pressed on, still wading the river, whilst first platoon hit the far bank and all scrambled out in the cover of the bushes. 

German fire was sporadic, although the first timed 105 strike hit near the bridge and a direct hit wrecked my meatchopper and its jeep… bum, not a shot fired… the bridge demolition charges also went off - kaboom! No more bridge. Oh well, I wasn’t using it anyway as I suspected it would be wired to blow. The engineers could come and fix it after I’d cleared the village. More worryingly, the Tiger rolled out into the fields on my left, with clear lines of fire into my infantry, armed only with a few bazookas to try and get into range to reply. The beast had to be dealt with.

On turn 3, my first reinforcements arrived. The light tanks. Could the M5s take on the Tiger? Hell, no… but I had nothing else to even try. Their HE area fire could cause suppression, as I had no hope of a penetrating hit. So, this would be their task uneviable task, fire everything and anything they had to keep that Tiger pinned. The Stuarts arrived, lined up the Tiger, and began winging HE shells. They pinned it, hurrah! The David and Goliath duel had begun. My P-47 swet in, drooped its bombs wildy (seems fair enough) and caused some pinning, but tat was it. Still, cheap counter on the Germans, they didn’t like that.

The next turns progressed with my infantry scrambling forwards and laying down as much area fire as they could, scoring good pins on the German MGs which had to be removed with more counters, but in return their 80mm mortars had found their range and were starting to hurt. Casualties from mortar fire, and constant, irritating pinning were a problem. On the upside, I pulled an ‘Out of Fuel’ counter and the Tiger suddenly found itself stuck - admitted stuck in a good firing position with lots of targets though. But, with all three M5s firing HE, then swiching to AP on area fire when the ammo ran out, they did keep the Tiger pinned every turn. David was winning (well at least getting a draw). 

One infantry squad grabbed their bazooka and bravely dashed to get a side shot at the pinned, fuel-less Tiger, only to be spotted by an MG team on covering fire, which wiped them out, ouch… (infantry supporting tanks, it works), also, a stray mortar round scored a direct hit on my Forward HQ, lurking in the bushes on the river bank. With some good dice, I the hit wiped them out. The Captain was gone, and so was my communications network command re-roll every turn, an officer, any chance to tactically co-ordinating, etc… suddenly the radio net was very quiet. A stroke of hideous luck that would be very costly (and cost me 2 BR counters as well).

Still, it was close (ish) on counters taken… and I had a far higher BR. But then, the smoke cleared. 

Turn 6 and my GIs of first platoon had closed right up to the hedges, but suddenly German MG fire, previously sporadic and just causing pinning, started to sweep the field. 4 MGs lashed the first platoon from the hedges, the church and the buildings. My return fire could not pin them (good cover saves from the Germans being a theme in this battle). My southern attacked turned into a bloodbath, squads were scythed down and the survivors broke and ran. The first platoon was gutted, only 7 men were left standing, and they pulled back, out of range, to the river bank. My counter stash was sudeenly growing very fast (about 6 counters had been added).

The M5s also disasterously failed to pin the Tiger for a turn, and it was free to open fire, smashing one M5 (my officer) with an 88 round… now the odds of keeping it pinned were against me. David was now loosing to Goliath. I just had to push on, to try and get my infantry into some better cover. My second platoon moved forwards, moving and firing as they went, and the M3 half track splashed over the river to lend its troops too, only for it to eat another 88 shell next turn and leave the men inside pinned and bloodied. My last bazooka team was machine gunned and lost. The Tiger had become an impervious bunker. All looked lost…

Except, I pulled the Endkampf counter. Lucky… but the Hiwi auxiliaries were obviously in no mood to fight on, and the Germans took 3 counters… suddenly he looked very worried, and in a tell-tale move, stopped unpinning his units. I also scored a mortar round direct hit on his resupply RSO, which had driven onto my PRTP (he forgot about it). A massive explosion shook the village as all the tracked truck’s extra 88 rounds went off at once. The German commander looked pained. All his good work was being undone. 1 more counter, 1 more counter, and my GIs would not have shed their blood for nought. 

But, it was his turn, and his platoon commander took over directing the mortar fire onto my northern attack. Another direct hit, more casulaties on a BAR squad and they then rolled another 1 for morale and broke, heading back to the river… it was the final counter that broke me… drat. It had been a bloodbath for me. One and half platoons gutted. German casulaties were very light, but he was only 4 BR from breaking himself. 1 or 2 more counters would have finished him. 

A very close fight (in BR), but a one sided kicking in actual men lost. Schweinbereich had held out, the Americans have to find another way round (or just call up the USAAF and flatten the place). 

Here are some snaps of the game in progress. A thoroughly enjoyable game, 4 hours (with break for bacon butties and some chatting). 

The overview. Germans in red. 1. Volksgrenadier and a few Hiwis holding the buildings. 2. Tiger tank - eek! 3. Mined road. US in blue. 1. First platoon's attack in assault boats. 2. FHQ, until killed by very stray mortar shell. 3. M45, moved then blown sky high by 105mm artillery strike. 4. Second platoon's attack. 5. M5s firing line against the Tiger. 

First platoon paddle for victory... old Britannia models (I know airborne crew... the shame!), second time ever used in a game, in about 15 years... well worth the time and £s. (They once paddled the Waal in a Rapid Fire game).

 Second platoon wade to victory. No boats for you guys, time to get wet.

 Bicycle-mounted Fusiliers in the hedges on my right, calling in mortar fire, the sneaky scouts. Their MG proved devastating too when it opened up at short range.

 Pak 38 dug-in covering the main road. Not an option I could use.

 The walled road into the village, mined and with an improvised road block (the cart).

 Timed 105 strike, destroying my M45 quad .50c cal before ever getting a shot in.

 Hitting the far bank. Go, go, go!

 First platoon out their boats and crossing the scrub lands, under mortar fire. PHQ at back, because they got pinned earlier - honest!

 Second platoon find a Tiger talk waiting for them... get those bazookas up front!

Then, the Beast finds it fuel tanks empty... would have been nice if the crew had abandoned it, but no such luck, they fought on.

 USAAF air strike, trying to hit the farm and missing by a lot.

 Kaboom! No more bridge...

My Stuarts arrive and take on the distant Tiger with HE. It worked well, for several turns, then it didn't, and the return fire was, well, predictable. Second  platoon are still trying to get out of the river.

 German reinforcements, Hiwis, arrive in their bus. Last stop the village church, all change!

 Pilots eye view... bridge smoking.

Second timed 105 strike at the bridge, as the M3 tries to get across the river. The Tiger then wiped it out... the results of the M5s failing to pin the Beast again. 

Then the camera ran out of batteries and I didn't have any spares closeby. I'd rather be playing that searching for batteries, so that was it for pics for today.

Thursday 18 February 2016


Below is a quick 'almost-historical' scenario I wrote up for a Battlegroup game of FotR I had planned. The game has been fought and a full AAR is being prepared, but in the meantime, I thought I post up the scenario details and the forces we both chose for the game. I would be playing the attacking US forces.

The Brigde at Schweinbereich
US forces must cross the Grungraben river and capture a bridge at the small farming hamlet of Schweinbereich. The German forces in the area are already retreating back towards the Rhine, but have left a small rearguard force to hold this bridge for as long as they can and delay the American’s pursuit. The US forces must force a crossing of the river, capture the bridge and clear the village of enemy resistance to allow a swift pursuit of the retreating German forces.

The Battlefield
The village (represented by 6-7 buildings along the road) includes a church and a school. Between the village and the river is open scrub fields with long grass, bushes and a few trees. Around the village are a few hedged enclosures, mostly used for cow pasture. The river is crossed by a girder bridge and the road is walled and partially hedged from the bridge to the village. There are more trees and hedges along some of the river banks. 

The Grungraben is fordable, but with some difficulty. It counts as dangerous terrain to infantry and vehicles, but can also be spanned by a light (or heavy) bridging unit, or by infantry in assault boats. 

The Germans initial defenders deploy anywhere on the their side (east) of the river. They may include defences. 

The Americans initial attackers deploy anywhere on their side (west) of the river.

There are three; the bridge, the village church and the village school. 

The German player rolls a D6 and selects this many units as his reinforcements, these start the game off the table and arrive from the eastern table edge from turn 5 onwards at the rate of D3 units per turn.

The American player rolls a D6 and selects this many units as his reinforcements, these start the game off the table and arrive from the western table edge from turn 3 onwards at the rate of D3 units per turn. 

Special Rules
Low Visibility: The US attack starts in the dawn’s semi-darkness and is preceeded by a smoke screen fired from supporting mortars, to enshrouded the entire hamlet, bridge and river bank. For the first D6 turns of the game only Area Fire is allowed, unless units are within 10” of eachother, in which case they may use Aimed Fire but with an additional -1 to spotting tests. On the last smoke turn rolled all shooting returns to normal but with an additional -1 to spot all units. After this turn, shooting returns to normal - the smoke has now cleared and the morning sun is up.

Scrub Land: Between the village and the river is rough scrub land (used for grazing pigs), its hummocks, long grass, bushes and few small trees provide infantry with soft cover, but they count as in the open for observation tests. It does not count as obscured for vehicles.

Assault Boats: US infantry can be equipped with plywood M2 assault boats to paddle over the Grungraben. Each boat holds up to 12 men and their equipment, and moves at 3” per move on the river. Men inside count as in the open whilst in the boats. Each M2 assault boat costs +2 points for the infantry platoon or squad using it. Destroyed boats do not incur the lost of any BR from taking counters. 

The Germans select 600 points from the Defenders of the Reich list. They may include Defences.

The US may select 600 points from the US battlegroup lists for 1945. 

Sketch Map 

Alternative Theatres and Forces
This is a generic scenario, set in Germany in 1945, but it could easily be moved to any other theatre. Reverse the situation, with the US rearguard holding the bridge and river and Germans attacking and set it during the first days of the Battle of the Bulge, the smoke screen could become thick morning fog. 

The US forces could readily be replaced by Russian or British 1945 forces without changing anything else.


FHQ with comms network 41 3 snr officer, arty spotter
Comms Relay team 13 0 comms

Infantry Platoon        101 13 officer, arty spotter
2 Bazookas        24 0
4 Assault Boats        8 0
Infantry Platoon        101 13 officer, arty spotter
2 Bazookas         24 0

Light Tank Platoon, 3 M5s 90 6 officer

Armoured Inf Squad in M3 HT 54 5

M45 quad AA with Jeep tow 24 1

Forward Aid Post         20 5

2 x 4.2” mortars (off-table) 72 0

PRTP (in centre of village)         15 0
Timed P-47 Airstrike 10 0

Totals         597 pts 46 BR 4 officers, 0 scouts. 

My plan here was to use the M5s and armoured infantry as a very fast flying column to race straight up the road and into the village on turn 1, using the smoke screen as cover, to then cause as much havoc in the village as possible and force the Germans to fight me there, whilst my infantry paddled or waded across the stream, under supporting fire from the M45 'meat-chopper', P-47's bombs and mortars. The flying column would be a suicide mission, but it would eat up a lot of German orders and disrupt his defences, thus buying time for my infantry to cross the river and open ground and close on the two objectives, hopefully in overwhelming numbers and using their 'fire superiority' rule to keep the German defenders's heads down. The FHQ would spot for the mortars from the safety of the far river bank, with his comms team close at hand. 


FHQ in heavy car          25 3 snr officer, arty spotter

Feldgendarme Team 20 D6

Volksgrenadier Platoon with3 pzfausts 100 7 officer, mortar spotter
HMG-34 team with loader team 28 1
Combat medic         8 0
50mm PaK38         29 2
horse and limber tow

Auxiliary Platoon (Hiwis) 33 4 officer
with civilian bus         6 0
HMG-34 team         18 1
Combat medic         8 0

Tiger I         87 4

Armoured RSO resupply vehicle 10 1

Goliath demolition team - 2 Goliaths 24 2

Fusilier patrol on bicycles with a pzfaust 35 1 scout, mortar spotter

2 x 80mm mortars (off-table) 54 0

2 timed 105mm artillery strikes 20 0      turns 2 and turn 5

2 Fortified Buildings (church and school) 40 0
AT Gun dug-out (for Pak38) 20 0
Improvised roadblock 5 0
Minefield         20 0
Bridge Demolition        10 0

Totals    600 pts 26+D6 BR   3 officers, 1 scout

The German's poor infantry would give up the river bank and opt to hold the village houses instead, and the fortified buildings of both objectives. The bridge would be well covered though, with a minefield on the road at the eastern end, a timed artillery strike, demolition charges in place for turn 2 and an obstacle blocking the road, in turn covered by the dug-in Pak38. The Tiger ('the beast of Schweinbereich') would be the mobile reserve, ready to move to meet the biggest threat. The Goliaths (an odd choice) were to be a weapon of last resort, hidden away, but in place to rumble out and attack if either of the objectives fell, blowing them sky high once the Americans were in place (nasty surprise, typically shabby Nazi trick). Their only problem was morale, the poor infantry and defences provide not much BR, could they hold out, even with the Feldgendarmes on hand to install so extra fighting spirit? The Auxiliary platoon were Russian POWs,  reluctantly forced back in into the line. 

Thursday 4 February 2016


Now close can a tabletop wargame get to simulating the reality of WWII infantry combat? This is an article I wrote for the wargaming press over a year ago, but as it never appeared in print, I'm going to self-publish... the joys of the tintaweb... just to stimulate some thoughts, comments are welcome (as ever, but keep it civil :-) ). 

It is an old, and popular, subject amongst WW2 wargamers – how to get historical accuracy and realism in their games. Over the last year, the subject has come up in several conversations at conventions, discussing how close a tabletop wargame can get to (and should aspire to get to) the reality of WW2 combat (for the infantry soldier). This got me to thinking (and thus writing). About 12 years ago I wanted to branch out from my 20mm ‘tank-oriented’ wargames to focus on the detail of infantry fighting, and so I set about writing a 28mm WW2 skirmish game, in which each player would get a platoon of infantry to command and then some support to add to it. Over the past few years this has become the default setting for 28mm WW2 wargames and there have been a number of rules sets and miniatures to match (you know them). So, my interest peaked again by this popularity, I revisited what I had written 12 years ago, to see how I had approached the problems that playing WWII platoon-level games at 28mm throws up. 
When I started I wanted my game (Platoon in Action was its working title), to deal only with harsh reality. I wanted a simulation, or as close as I could get to the real tactical problems of a platoon commander. I wanted the use of real tactics and counter-tactics and a game that rewarded the player who ‘did it right’ by using the training, as written in the handbooks.  Here is what I found. This isn’t to say that this is a system for playing a WW2 infantry simulation, more (if it was a maths problem) this is showing some of the first ‘working-out’, the inner guts, the groundwork which could be used to then develop a rules system that perhaps got players closer to the goal of reality.
In writing this article I’ve tried to avoid making too many assumptions or conceits to what might be actually playable as a tabletop ‘game’, that is not the point of the exercise, I want to take the reality and turn it into something closer with miniatures. It’s not possible to do this completely so, by way of explanation, my first assumption is this – standard engagement ranges for infantry in Normandy were about 300 yards (still the standard for infantry training I believe). That said, if you were closer that 300 yards from the enemy you were ‘at close quarters’. 300 yards is an effective range for the standard issue bolt action rifles of the period. Of course, whether you can see 300 yards is another matter, but if you could, then you could effectively engage the enemy. A second assumption is that 28mm models are 1/56th in scale. This is actually a bit small (a 28mm tall model is then a bit short as about a 5’2” tall man). A 5’10” tall man, as represented by a 28mm tall model, is actually closer to 1/62nd scale, but most models are built to 1/56th (and all those now ‘over-sized’ vehicle models won’t feature in our infantry platoon-sized game anyway). The third assumption is that my default setting for examples etc will be the fighting in Normandy in 1944, and specifically the British infantryman, as that’s what I know best.

PROBLEM 1. Realistic ground scale and table size
So, the first problem we must deal with is a realistic ground scale and thus the table size. 300 yards (900 feet), our effective range baseline is (via the miracle of maths), 900/56 = 16.07, let’s say 16 feet then. 16 feet! The table needs to be at least 16 feet long to be able to represent 300 yards of effective range shooting at 1/56th scale. Think about that... how many people can really play on a 16’ table very often? And on the 16’ table, we will have just a platoon of men, no more that 20-30 or so models. So, here is the first point against simulation... you can’t get it on a tabletop, even for  the effective range for small arms (let alone longer range exchanges with tank cannons or mortars etc). 300 yards for tank warfare is very, very close range (too close most tank crews would say). The tanks don’t often get that close, so we can safely ignore them, except maybe as an off-table main gun or machine gun fire from further back. So, no tank models will be needed in our model collection, boo!
So, let’s see if we can make this prospective simulation a bit more practical. Let say I can actually play on a 6 x 4 table, a default most wargames rules are written for, because most writers actually want gamers to play their rules sometime, rather than read them, snort and shelve the book forever as interesting but unplayable.
A 6’ by 4’ table creates, at 1/56th scale, 112 yards by 75 yards. That is very close range, you are already on top of the enemy. Fix bayonets, pull out grenades, etc, because you can see the whites of their eyes and this is going to be very messy. Close quarters combat is, in modern warfare, something of a rarity. Most troops never get this close to the enemy, mainly because they don’t have too. But, it does sometimes happen, so perhaps what we are really simulating here is a close assault, not an infantry fire fight (that must have already happened to get us this close). Second, the table area isn’t anywhere large enough for a full platoon to operate.  It’s a quarter of the size of the table we need, so we can realistically have a section (or squad) on it. Our simulation might actually need to take place with just 8-12 models attacking. 

PROBLEM 2. Terrain
So, what terrain are we going to need for our game. To get an example of a 6’ x 4’ table I took a walk up the local country lane and measured out an area roughly 112 yards by 75. My brief afternoon stroll complete, I drew a sketch map of what I had found - and bear in mind I chose an area of ‘dense’ and interesting terrain here, perhaps recreating an action as the section moved up the lane into a village and it encountered the defending enemy at close quarters. I didn’t just stand in the middle of a cow field, in which case the 6’x4’ table could quite reasonably and realistic have no terrain at all, just be a flat green rectangle of grass. But who wants to play on that table when the enemy have accurate machine guns? I’d want to play on something slightly more interesting and challenging, and assume most players do to, so here it is.

As I want this to be accurate, I then used Google Earth to show the real thing. 
That is just the 6’ x 4’, for our section’s close assault. But that wasn’t actually the game we set out to create. The original platoon action, at effective range, is on our big 16’ table (again its only  6’ wide, because we have to able to reach the models to be able to play at all).
This is the same area of Derbyshire country lane again (standing in for rural Normandy to save on travel costs), but this time for a 16’ table, and again, chosen for interest, not just two adjacent fields split by a hedge.

And again here it is on Google Earth, to show accurately what we are recreating. Those farms are less that 300 yards apart (I walked it), easily within rifle shot (but they can’t actually see each other due to all the trees). The hedges are big, easily over 10 feet tall and full of trees (quite Norman), there are also a ditches between them and the lane, which are about half full of murky drainage water, so I’m not getting into them to test depth - but if the Germans were trying to shoot me, I’d be in up to my ears without a pause. Still, on a big table, that’s not really much in the way of terrain either, except north of the lane, where the ground is dense with overgrown bushes, ferns and in places very swampy underfoot, being slightly lower lying than the surrounding fields. It seems to be waste ground, not used for anything (except fly tipping - grr). 

OK, so we have our possible tabletops, small for a section at close quarters or large for a whole platoon at more standard ranges.

PROBLEM 3. The timescale
So, this is a platoon action, we have a ground scale, but how long will the game last? As a base line let’s look first at say, 1 minute turns. It might not be that 1 minute works well, but it’ll give an idea of what could and couldn’t work. We might need to be longer or shorter. But, at just one minute turns, these fire fights are going to be very long games to get to 20 minutes of action. Not playable in an evening. You’ll be at it for two days to play an hour of actual fighting. 
As far as I can see, there are basically two main actions to consider along with the timescale; movement (i.e. how far can people really move in that time) and secondly firing, i.e. how many shots can they fire in the time. I’ll deal with shooting first, because it’s more interesting, and it’s going to be the beating heart of the rules in the end – the actual combat.

PROBLEM 4. Rates of Fire, Ranges and Ammunition
Let’s look at the standard infantry weapon first (in this case the excellent Enfield Mk4) to get an idea of how much shooting could possibly be done. I think a well trained regular soldier could, rapid firing, empty his 10 round magazine in 15 seconds. They might not be the best aimed shots, but they will be putting some lead down range. The infantryman then has to reload of course, not a swift business in 1944, but let’s say another 15 seconds. So, flat out, that’s 20 rounds and two reloads in our 1 minute turn. So we have a baseline for bolt-action rifle fire at 20 rounds a minute. For the sake of developing the rules, let’s say that allows me to roll 1 dice in the game. This might change, but the number of dice rolled will give us an easier comparison in rates of fire.
Compare this to a submachine gun’s rate of fire (and they are going to feature prominently on the 6’ x 4’ table, because everything is easily within SMG effective range of roughly 100 yards). The British Sten’s 300 rounds per minute cyclic rate of fire empties its 30 round magazine in just 6 seconds. Then it has a far swifter reload than the rifle. Let’s say 4 magazine a minute with reloads (flat out, and it doesn’t jam due to overheating – which mostly likely it would,   but we are just looking at raw data here, that sort of ‘advanced stuff’ like jamming comes later in development). So, if 20 rounds was 1 dice, 120 SMG rounds is then 6 dice. OK. If in the simulation a rifle gets 1 dice, SMGs get 6 dice. I can buy that. 
The Bren gun gets a similar amount of dice to the SMG, with similar cyclic rate of fire and magazine capacity, it can just fire further more accurately. It gets 6 dice too. 
So far so good for the Brits, but here comes the rub. On the other side of the table, the German player’s platoon gets their MG-34 (or even worse MG-42), and in his platoon gets not just 1 of them, but 3, and in some cases, justifiably 6. The MG-34s cyclic rate of fire of 900 rounds per minute, with a 100 round belt (which has to be reloaded too of course) results in a stripped belt every 6.6 seconds, then a reload. So let’s say a quick reload doubles that firing time. By my maths, roughly 400 rounds are actually fired each minute. Again, if the rifle is 1 dice for 20 rounds, on the same scale, the MG-34 is 20 dice! And the Germans get 3! And an MG-42’s higher rate of fire will be more dice again (27 dice actually).
So, we have another issue, the power of the German machine guns. They will dominate the board, that 16 foot table with (accurately) little terrain is a killing field for MGs easily within their effective range. The British (or whoever else) are going to get pummelled by machine gun bullets. So badly pummelled it might not be worth even playing this game. OK, but it is simulated realism we are after (not a good game)... so that being the case, we must live with the results, and our British player must too (I suggest after one game he’ll never want to play again though). 
We haven’t yet considered ammunition supply, which might be a big saving factor here, because we have only looked at absolute maximum rates of fire, the very top of the scale. Ammunition of course severely limits that. A standard British rifleman has 60 rounds of .303 rifle ammo, or a full magazine and 5 reloads in his bandolier. He can keep up the above rate of fire for just 3 1 minute turns before his out. He can fire less of course, but we are down at 1 dice rolled already. Double it 2 dice, so he can include a more cautious, ammo preserving rate of fire at 1 dice a turn, and we’ll have to double all the other weapons too!
The NCO with his Sten is in bigger trouble for ammo that his fellow riflemen. Firing flat-out with his 6 magazines, the NCO can fire for just 1.5 turns before his out. So that might be (6 dice per turn multiplied by 1.5) for a maximum of just 9 dice rolled per game. If we then double it as for rifle, then we get a maximum of 18 dice to roll per game, at a maximum of 12 dice rolled in any one turn (still with me?).
The Bren gunner, given he also has a loader with the big ammo bag, can fire for a bit longer, and we will have to include rules for all those British riflemen with the extra Bren magazines dropping them off too, but, with no extra aid from his section but his loader, the Bren gunner can fire flat out at 30 dice for the game, again at a maximum of 12 dice per turn.
I’ll assume the German MG-34 team will be carrying (between the 3 of them) 500 or 600 rounds of ammunition as standard. That translates at the larger scale as 30 dice per game. At the smaller scale to better accommodate the rifleman’s firepower (which is what the game should really be using as its baseline, given he’s the ‘standard’ soldier), that is 60 dice per game at a maximum of 40 dice in any one turn. Notably, at these numbers, everybody is going to run out of ammo very fast.

PROBLEM 5. Movement Distances
How far can you run in one minute? That’s you as a 20 year old aerobically fit young man, not a slightly overweight 40-something as per the author. It’s quite along way. 
First, let’s work out the maximum possible distance. A flat out sprint covers 100 metres, 110 yards, in 15 roughly seconds (if you’re aren’t Usain Bolt). That’s 440 yards a turn. Now actually most people  can’t sprint for more than about 200 yards, because of the lactic acid builds up so rapidly in muscles, which becomes too painful, so the sprinter has to slow down a bit (its why the 400 metres is such a gruelling running race over the 200 metres in atheletics). Also, our soldiers have heavy kit to carry. So, even with that taken into account, 300 yards isn’t unreasonable as a maximum movement distance for running in a minute long turn. That’s the full 16’ table, of 192”. OK, obstacles and terrain are going to effect that, but hey, for accuracy and realism it is possible (and sometimes highly desirable) to just sprint around the battlefield. 
Let’s look at the other end of the scale, and assume the slowest move is a crawl (and mostly that is how troops actually move under fire at these sorts of ranges).  I tested it, you can steadily crawl about 30 yards in 1 minute. That translates as about 20” on the tabletop. So movement rates will be anywhere from 20” to 192”. We could maybe cut the turn down to 30 seconds of action, and get half those distances, but that would also affect our earlier weapon rates of fire calculations. The rifle is currently 1, so that’s now half a dice. Let’s put it back up to 1 dice as I don’t know if you can get half a dice (maybe a D3 instead of a D6 if that’s the dice we opt for in the end). Again, alternatively, if the new rifle baseline is doubled to 1 dice again, then we have to double all the other weapons. To keep the same ratio, SMGs and Brens now fire 12 dice. The MG-34 a mere 40 dice per 30 second turn!
Of course, all this movement assumes models aren’t doing anything else, but it helps sets the minimum and maximum limits. Obviously, movement is going to be affected by a lot of other factors but, for accuracy, it has to be in the game - the possibility to just run across flat ground for a whole turn. 

PROBLEM 6. Forces
So far, I’ve been working on the basic concept that this a game with one platoon a-side, but 1 platoon in attack against 1 platoon in defence isn’t going to get far. Doctrine would dictate that the attacker should have a 2 to 1 or 3 to 1 advantage. So, we could cut the defender’s forces down, so our one platoon is actually attacking an enemy section or squad (or maybe a reinforced section or squad). So, our 16’ table has 30 models attacking, and maybe just 10 defending.
For a hobby about collecting toy soldiers, 10 men doesn’t seem much to get your teeth into either (but is cheap).  Also, one end of that huge board has got nothing on it but a few lurking riflemen and an MG team. There isn’t going to be much in the way of decisive movement from them during the game. They are just going to dig-in to their best cover and sit tight whilst the attacker struggles into that overwhelming MG fire. All very historically accurate I think. 
War ‘games' need movement to tell a story, static games don’t play well and don’t have much of a narrative. I’ve always found it’s not too interesting to play a static defender, because you just wait, wait, then shoot like mad, why do anything else?. Movement and manoeuvre create a wargame’s story and the drama of a tabletop battle. Our simulation won’t have much in the way of movement, at least from the defender (he won’t have much too move).

So, what does the above ‘working-out’ tell me? It tells me that an accurate simulation, at its most basic, in such details as weapon’s ranges, rates of fire and movement distances, isn’t very well suited to tabletop gaming. This is before we have got into the very tricky area of morale and the ‘will to fight’ which, as a simulation, aren’t going to easily recreate a soldier’s emotional and mental state. 
It also tells me a 28mm wargame played on a 6’ x 4’ table, claiming anything like accuracy, is a simple fallacy. Now, if I saw the game being played with a platoon of models on a 16’ long table with sparse terrain, the claim might have some validity, or if a game was just a section or squad of men on a 6’x4’, again with sparse terrain, it might be representative of something more akin to a close assault. I would suggest that there is almost nobody who wants to play (more than once) a game that involves his British platoon, 16’ from the enemy down the table, pinned down by machine gun fire, with little or no cover to advance through, no scope for manoeuvre and simply trading fire in a very uneven fire fight until they run out of ammo. (This could be fixed of course with rules for resupply, but bear in mind the timescale, waiting 15 minutes for runners with more ammo – which is quite prompt, might be 15 turns of doing very little!). Dull, dull, dull - but very accurate. 
And beyond that, what might a gamer hope to learn or get out of such a simulation? That those German machine guns mean you can’t move... or that it’s best to simply get into a ditch, keep your head down and wait for some mortar fire to zero in and force the enemy to pull back from it before advancing again. In which case, in the end, your simulation of WWII infantry combat comes about bringing down your supporting fire... and your collected and painted models do very little on the tabletop. It’s not an enticing prospect... probably very accurate, but crucially for me (and most), not that much fun more than once. 
Obviously, rules and what they try to recreate are a very subjective matter. Gamers look for different things from their rules, but I’d guess they do have one thing in common, they expect their hobby to entertain them when they get all the boards, terrain and models out. I believe a simulation, enticing though it might seem at first glance, won’t be. Not if it still retains anything close to what it claims to recreate. 
For me, wargames rules need to be a broader study of war, not an attempt to recreate the detail of a soldier’s lived experience of combat. 

‘It is one thing to study war, and another to live the warrior’s life.’
– Telamon of Arcadia