Sunday, June 1, 2014

Armored Strike

"Panzers Herr Rico!  I'm-a burnin' them down!" (with apologies to Heinlein)

There was a need to try out a new Soviet assault gun "battalion" so I provided the German opposing force.  Both lists taken from Grey Wolf, 2000 points per side.  The mission we randomly rolled seemed to favor the Soviets.  "Encounter" mission with delayed and scattered reserves that meant half the Soviet force would start on table while I would have four of nine.  Which is roughly half but Dan got a lot more for his half.

I faced a mixed T-34 company with SU-100s and limited air support.  To defend my two objectives I took the Panzerjager IV/70 (4) Marders (3), Pak43 (2) and self-propelled quad 20mm (3).  At least I got to see where the Soviets would be before placing my more important platoons.

Looking left towards the T-34s and centered SU-100s.

On the right I relied on my immobile Pak43s and AA to hold.

Early on we set the pattern of lots of hitting but few firepower tests.
We don't play with or against Soviets that much but we quickly found that the special restrictions placed on them, coupled with some ROF1 elements meant that the veteran Germans couldn't be hit at long range.  Throughout my AFVs played hide and seek with the Soviets.  Popping out to take a shot and "Storm trooping" back under cover.  In this way the Germans chipped away at the Soviets while only losing one Jadgpanzer.  Even a bogged Marder lived to fight again.

The Soviets get reserves and the Germans do not.  Looks grim.
Turn three saw more SU-100s come on table while the Germans failed to roll a 5+.  Fortunately the Sturmoviks that showed up most turns were shot down by the vigilant SPAA.  One of them, which had to stay in the open for a good field of fire became a burner for their efforts, but it was worth it.  Somewhere about the time the picture above was taken came a moment that symbolized the Soviet shooting in the later stages of the game.  At long range my three Marders were in the woods, exposed to Soviet fire.  Dan had sixteen dice needing a six to hit, which would have gone straight to a firepower test.  No hits were scored.  Meanwhile I continued to get hits but mostly bailed the enemy tankers.

Turn four the SU-85s came on table, but so did a three gun section of Pak40s.  While not terribly effective against the SUs, they provided a necessary distraction.  At least they showed up where they could do some good.

Seeking to overwhelm my defenses before more reserves arrived the Soviets plunged into the woods after me.  But even then the hit probability was not great and as they closed on their objective some drifted into range of the Pak43s which could snipe at the limit of their 40" range.

A dog-fight in the woods.  Pak43 takes out the Soviet CO.

Panzerspah platoon from reserve races past burned out T-34s.

Late arriving infantry double-times it to the other objective.
In the end (sorry, no picture) the point-blank knife fight went in my favor.  With the battalion commander "dead" and three units destroyed, the fourth went away when forced to test.  In the end I never got my second infantry platoon on table nor the nebelwerfers.  Amazingly all the Germans lost were the one Panzerjager, two Pak40s and an armored SPAA.  Half a dozen Sturmoviks were shot down and the armor eliminated on the Soviet side.  We need to look at what works best for Soviet tactics for next time.


  1. Looks jolly good fun. Was this at a different venue than usual?

  2. Yes. I should have noted it was our monthly trip to Fire For Effect Games about 25 miles from home. Very nice shop with good people running it.