Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Australian OOB for Kokoda West

Scenario 1 – Defence of Kokoda 29th July 1942

Maroubra Forces First Blooding

After experiencing a fierce fire fight at Oivi the Australian commander Captain Templeton has withdrawn his surviving troops and regrouped with other elements of the 39th Battalion and Papuan Infantry Battalion at the village of Kokoda arriving there on the night of the 27th July.

Initially fearing that the Japanese forces would be hot on their tails the commander of the 39th Battalion, Lt Col Owen orders a withdrawal of all his available troops to the village of Deniki where he expects to set up another defensive position to hold the Japanese advance.

On the morning of the 28th when the expected Japanese attack did not occur, Owen moves his forces back to Kokoda re-establishing his positions in the village and at the airfield. He radios’ Port Moresby for urgent reinforcements to be sent. Later that day the surviving air transports from Port Moresby were observed to circle the village but left the area without landing the promised troops they were carrying and returned to Port Moresby.  Lt Col Owen and the surviving elements of the 39th are now left alone to defend Kokoda.

Kokoda is a vital strategic position located on a spur at the foot hills of the Owen Stanley Ranges. It comprises a small village, surrounding plantations and an all important small airstrip.

During the night of the 28th July, Japanese mortar team observers move close to the Australian positions within sight of the village and begin a bombardment that lasts all night and into the next morning hoping that the constant bombing will cause the Australian to once again leave their positions handing Kokoda to the Japanese.

Australian Briefing for 29th July 1942

Strategic Considerations

Strategic Options
Outflanking Option
Hold Option
Reserve Options
Patrol Options
Ambush Options
Aircraft Support

You play Lt-Col Owen commanding elements of the 39th battalion as well as a cobbled together force of the Papuan Infantry Battalion. Your force is now known as Maroubra Force.

You have under your command the survivors of B Company 39th Battalion, part of D Company 39th Battalion and a small group of three undersized sections of the PIB as well as the 39th Company medium mortar and 2 HMG’s from the 39th support.

The Japanese begin their attack at 0230 hours in the dark with a heavy mist rolling over the plateau.


Despite suffering heavy bombardment you have been made aware that throughout the night enemy forces have been gathering near your position to the East and South East.

From what your forces have experienced at Oivi and from what you have personally observed, you estimate that you are facing a battalion sized force, may be more in the battle to come.

Weighing on your mind is the importance of holding kokoda. This war is about maintaining the ability to fight the war in the air and holding Kokoda is vital in being able to wage that air war.
Troop Deployment
You have two battles combined into one to play within this scenario. The two battle areas are (1) Kokoda village which is situated to over look the airstrip on a plateau and (2) the air strip its self. You must announce what forces are being deployed to each area prior to the battle commencing. Each areas of conflict will be played simultaneously. No forces may be swapped between the two areas unless both battles are called to a halt. Likewise as you only have 1 mortar it must assign its support to one of the battles. No cross over support is allowed.

Deployment Considerations

Your B company troops have had their losses from the previous battle distributed so that your three platoons are now smaller and similar in size. Remember that one platoon is now lacking an LMG. Your remaining platoons are equipped with Lewis only, except for the surviving Bren.
·        Your “D” company platoons both have only Lewis guns.
·        Your Papuans do not have LMG’s but all NCOs are now equipped with SMG’s.
·        HMG’s can be distributed as a team of two to one scenario or one to each battle.
·        You men have now experienced no rest form the Japanese attack, they are tired, week and have not been able to stop and eat.


Australian forces start the game entrenched. The entrenchments are not placed on the field of play unless they open fire or enemy troops come within 8 inches of them. Entrenchments are classed as hard cover.

Reinforcements – There are none available

Kokoda Battle - Force Structure by Orders Of Australian Commander

Troops dedicated to hold AirstripWest Kokoda
ADC C-in-C Captain Templeton, (Present)
39th Battalion HQ Section
39th Battalion HMG Support, Section 2 – 1 x Vickers HMG’s
39th Battalion Medium Mortar Section – 1 Tube + Observer Team
 Plus 1 HMG team detached from HMG support

 D Company 39th Battalion - all forces Tired/Green
 C-in-C Captain Bistrap
 D Company 39th Battalion HQ Section
 16th Platoon - 3 sections of 9, 3 x LMG’s (Lewis)
 17th Platoon - 3 sections of 9, 3 x LMG’s (Lewis)

 Papuan Infantry Battalion - all forces Tired/Green
 C-in-C Major Watson (Present)
 Papuan Infantry Battalion HQ Section 5 men
 1st Section – 4 Papuans, 1 x Australian SMG, 1 x Papuan SMG, 1 x Papuan Lewis LMG
 2nd Section - 4 Papuans, 1 x Australian SMG
 3rd Section - 4 Papuans, 1 x Australian SMG


1.      Hold the position knowing that you will not be receiving any further support.

2.      Where you are not able to hold the position escape off your base line end of the board with as many troops in tact as you can rescue – remember these troops will be needed in the days to come.

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