Time for another Wednesday Wargaming Battle Report! Back after a week off due to a test. This time around we decided to try out the new version of the Flames of War rules, basically to try out the new game, and also to see how it would work for the next campaign which is planned at the club, which is a re-do of Operation Bagration. This meant lists from Grey Wolf and Red Bear basically.
I decided to take my Sturm Kompaine army, which is my original FoW army, to see how infantry would work now. Serge took a Tankovy Company with lots of tanks. I kind of figured that I would be facing tanks but my ranged anti-tank is a bit weak if I am honest. But that was my choice to go with.
I basically had 3 platoons of infantry, 2 with full panzerfaust, some mortars, and heavy machine guns, a pair of Pak 40s, a trio of StugGs, and a Hs 129 B-3. This plane has the most powerful forward firing weapon fitted to a plane in WW2, according to wikipedia, so this was meant to give me a bit of a boost in the tanks department.
The Russians, had 2 big mixed companits of T-34/85s and T-34/76s, 3 IS-2, and a few anti-aircraft guns.
We used the new matrix to determine the missions. I choose defend, and the Russians chose Hasty Attack, you then look up a table and roll similar to Age of the Wolf, this gave us Cunter Attack. Not a awesome mission to be in as an infantry company!
Turn 1 sees the Russians advancing at full speed towards an objective. They way this mission works is that the defender starts on one objective, and there is a second open one. But they don't count until turn 6. So the attacker has a chance to get on it if they are fast, and then you have to counter attack them off it. I was really on the fence but decided to deploy my ambush, mainly to by time. I moved up my counter attack infantry platoon into a woods as a distraction, and put my guns in the back. They destroyed 2 tanks so not bad really. I got a reserve in and took the plane, but it didn't turn up. The way reserves works is much improved now, you have to keep 40% of your points off table instead of half your platoons. So there is much less of an ability to game the system.
Turn 2, the Russians circled the wagons I guess. One tank platoon surrounded the forest, and shot up my guys in there, killing most of them but they stuck around for now. The other platoon had to move to line up some shots on my guns, no effective hits due to moving around as Russians! On my turn my plane came in and destroyed an IS-2, and bailed another, you can see him doing Gods work by the hill. I also got 2 reserves, so took in my tanks and the HMGs. My guns managed to kill another tank, and I moved up a platoon of infantry with panzerfausts into the crops. My idea here is that they can't shoot anyone, and I will force them to move or maybe loose a couple of tanks next turn.
The Russians now focused on my 2 poor guns, and of course easily killed them. But they had claimed 3 tanks which is not bad for 2 guns really. They also murdered to rest of my poor infantry. But this is less of a concern now. The tanks in the field had not moved, so that at least gave me a chance for some fun
On my turn the Hs 129 B-3 came in again, he is on his game now. Planes come in on a 4+ single die roll always now, and you get 1, 2, or 3 based on the level you choose. My StugG's killed nothing, but he took out 2 more tanks. I moved up my HMGs and they were able to easily kill the 3 AA trucks. A bit suicidal in retrospect, but I wanted to kill some stuff and protect my plane! My infantry made their surprise attack, and easily killed their 2 tanks. The assault rules are a bit simpler now, and harder to get everyone fighting. The Russian tanks decided to fall back not wanting to assault against so many panzerfausts. I also got my last platoon the mortars on, but they had nothing to do now really.
On turn 4 the Russians went on to control the objective. One platoon of tanks advanced on the StugGs, just getting a bail. The IS-2s killed most of the machine guns, in revenge. And the other tanks platoon tried to shoot up my guys in the field, but weren't super effective.
For my turn I gave it a good go. My tank failed to remount, and my infantry failed to unpin. My StugG's fired some shots and I think just got a bail, they then used shoot and scoot to move back. My plan came on yet again! And killed another tank. With my infantry pinned there wasn't much else I could do.
Turn 5, the Russians pretty well just moved everyone onto the objective and full speed. A few tanks got some shots, and they easily killed the bailed out StugG. On my turn I was now forced to contest or loose. So I had to move in my StugGs. They didn't kill anything I think but are now contesting, delaying the game a turn. My plane continued to come in, and knocked out another Russian tank. He is racking up quit the kill streak.
Turn 6 the objectives count from now on, the Russians have it literally buried under tanks, so they just sat it out and killed my StugGs without much trouble. T-34/85s are really good tanks. At this point the writing is on the wall, but I don't want to just give up. My plane herocially came in again, and killed yet another T-34, but they still have 3 left on the front platoon, so aren't even forced to make a morale test in the new rules. I also kept my infantry pressing up. They are close enough to try an assault, which is a bit crazy but last ditch effort. Three tanks are able to get me with their turret machine guns, and they killed my 2 guys with ease. But worth a shot.
This left the Russians in control of the objective at the start of turn 7, so they are the winners. In the end this was a tough mission for me, but I found it to be pretty fun. The new rules make it allot more fun to be an infantry company, as infantry can move 8" now, and you are not rolling company morale as soon as you get below half. So loosing a few platoons is not a big problem.
To be fair I did kill like 10 T-34s and an IS-2, which is a good amount of tanks! Half of that is from the Hs 129 who did much better then average, coming in every turn except 1.
Personally I liked then new rules, they simplify allot of things, and there are some big changes which shake things up allot. Planning to try another game next week as we continue to play around with things.