The Germans are back from bitter defeat, but are they ready for the Soviet horde?
Warlorder JoshB shows us his third battle against the ever-so resilient Germans!
Josh: In my last battle report, which you can read here, I stated we were probably going to do a civilian rescue but we decided we didn’t have enough buildings to simulate a small town, so we just played a normal annihilation match, first to wipe out the other wins. Also, I managed to get a few models done and I just had to play with them!
Please note, we did a bit of proxy-ing which I will state what is what, and also some grey Russians are in the mix too!
The Soviet army
Originally, I made my list with search and rescue in mind, so I made sure I had plenty of infantry squads to escort civi’s and a main battle tank to take most of the heat, but just like a battle, the objective can change so I was stuck with my list, but it still holds some merit in the firepower department.
All regular unless stated
Reinforced Platoon no 1:
- Senior Lieutenant with one infantryman 85 points.
- 8 Man guard squad with one panzerfaust (Represented by a mix of infantry) 85 points.
- 8 Man guard squad with two panzerfausts (Represented by a mix of infantry) 90 points.
- 8 Man LMG squad with two LMG’s (Represented by a mix of infantry) 120 points.
- 8 Man LMG squad with two LMG’s (Represented by a mix of infantry) 120 points.
- Inexperienced 12 Man Rifle squad with anti-tank grenades (Represented by a mix of infantry) Free.
- Medium Machine gun team 50 points.
- Medium Mortar team with spotter 60 points.
- Sniper team 50 points.
- Anti-tank Rifle team 30 points.
- Zis 2 Anti-tank gun 75 points.
- T34/85 Medium tank 235 points.
To make it easier to track, the squad with painted models is the guard, whilst the LMG squad doesn’t have any painted models…yet!
The tactic with the civilian rescue operation is obvious but I had to re-purpose some units to fit their new roles that I needed them to do for the game at hand. Originally I planned to keep a very strong cone of fire as most civilians would be coming out of one way, but with no one to get in the way, I had to protect my flanks and make sure that I kept the buildings under my control. The LMG squads, the MMG team, sniper, Zis 2 and Anti-tank rifle team held both flanks, really trying to force my opponent to send most of his units down the middle to face my core head on.
Fallschirmjager platoon with support
I assume my opponent created his list based on the previously agreed scenario that we changed, which explains the hardened infantry with plenty of artillery support, even dosing the Panzer IV down to fit more men in the list.
All Veteran unless stated
Reinforced Platoon no 1:
- Regular Second Lieutenant 50 points.
- 8 Man Fallschirmjager squad with seven assault rifles, one LMG and two panzerfausts (Represented by a squad of early grenadiers) 177 points.
- 8 Man Fallschirmjager squad with seven assault rifles, one LMG (Represented by a squad of early grenadiers) 167 points.
- Medic 30 points.
- 8 Man Heer grenadier squad with seven assault rifles, one LMG and two panzerfausts 169 points.
- Regular Medium Machine gun team (Represented by two LMG men, we know it should of been three…) 50 points.
- Regular Medium Mortar team with spotter (Represented by 3 Fallschirmjager specialists) 60 points.
- Sniper team 65 points.
- Regular Howling Cow (Hilarious name) (Represented by a Russian Katyusha) 55 points.
- Regular Panzer IV Ausf B-F (Represented by a Panzer IV H) 175 points.
Again, fighting what seems to be an uphill battle the Germans relied on their superior firepower and set up in the buildings so they can benefit from the bonuses it can provide. My opponent also heavily relied on the toughness of veterans as well, taking the Panzer IV down to an earlier model essentially taking it away from the frontline which really exposed his troops who were on the front. The first thing I spotted in this list was the lack of long-ranged anti-tank which really set the T-34 into its own league in this battle.
We have a brand new board and gaming mat and might I say it looked and felt nice to play on, the table was also the ideal height for us it was just the room isn’t that big, but o’ well! I simply scattered the terrain but I wanted an open middle ground so both sides can attack each other straight away, I placed the giant church on the side so it didn’t really obscure anything but still can be usable. We have an even number of buildings and watchtowers so it is always easy to balance it out. I won the roll off and decided to set up first.
The fact that the Russians usually start of with more order dice certainly gives them a ‘first shot’ advantage, having the first order dice, I immediately moved my T-34 up to hopefully destroy the Panzer IV immediately, it managed to hit it but to no avail. Units on both sides moved up but both mortars certainly put the work in. The Russian Mortar got a glorious shot onto the Fallschirmjager inside the building, landing 6 hits and removed 6 immediately after, really putting a huge dent in the staying power of the Germans in the centre of the battlefield.
The German mortar also managed to mangle the poor sniper assistant and machine gun assistant. Elsewhere the Anti-tank rifle team also lost his assistant and the guard squad lost a member. Also, I really didn’t want that German sniper to stick around, I pumped over 5 squads worth of shots into him, but no wounds at all…
Casualty Report of Turn 1
The Germans suffered 6 casualties this round, losing roughly 119 points worth of men, current force is 881 points strong.
The Russians suffered 4 casualties this round, losing roughly 66 points worth of men, current force is 929 points strong.
More carnage and certainly more models being taken off the table. The conscripts were nearly destroyed, a screaming mortar shell landed on the completely unaware Soviets, crippling the squad from 12 to 3, but they stayed tough and withstood the explosions but they couldn’t do much else. The T-34 changed his sights onto the already damaged Fallschirmjager but MISSED the building right in his face…
The anti-tank rifle obliterated the poor second lieutenant whilst the German machine gun team was gunned down by the LMG squad. The other LMG squad managed to force the Howling Cow crew down but still managed to take out one of them, temporarily putting the gun out of commission, but most of the other units just moved forwards, shot and missed or got shot.
Casualty Report of Turn 2
The Germans suffered 4 casualties this round, losing roughly 127 points worth of men, current force is 754 points strong.
The Russians suffered 9 casualties this round, losing roughly 0 points worth of men, current force is 929 points strong.
How do you go one up on carnage? Destruction!
The Panzer IV got completely cleaved through by the anti-tank gun, reducing the once mighty German machine into a slump of metal and fire. The damaged fallschirmjager held on to only be wiped out by the overwhelming force of gunfire, the sniper beside him also suffered the same fate, which tore the German army in half and the Soviets drove straight down the middle.
The second lieutenant and his assistant were cut down by the Grenadiers for revenge of their fallen brethren. The anti-tank rifle and LMG reduced the German mortar to a single man, and the full strength Fallschirmjager went into the top of the church to fully witness the scale of the battle and how badly it was going for the German forces.
Casualty Report of Turn 3
The Germans suffered 4 casualties this round and lost one armoured vehicle, losing roughly 244 points worth of assets, current force is 510 points strong.
The Russians suffered 2 casualties this round, losing roughly 85 points worth of men, current force is 844 points strong.
With the German force in tatters, the units desperately tried to hold on but with no support; they fell. The German mortar squad was picked-off by the anti-tank rifle, finally avenging those poor conscripts. The grenadiers sustained a large amount of fire, the T-34 and mortar opened up, blasting the building apart and exposing the last man standing in the squad, to only have him cave under because there was far too much firepower to do anything. The medic took a direct shot from the anti-tank gun…
The full strength fallschirmjager knew the battle was lost, but that they must also avenge their fallen brethren. They assaulted the LMG squad and wiped them whilst sustaining causalities reducing their squad to half strength. This, however, left them extremely exposed and were lit up wiping them out completely. The last crewman managed to get one shot off the Howling Cow but missed completely, the Germans then issued an unconditional surrender.
Casualty Report of Turn 4
The Germans suffered 17 casualties this round, losing roughly 394 points worth of men, current force is 116 points strong.
The Russians suffered 8 casualties this round, losing roughly 120 points worth of men, current force is 724 points strong.
Soviets crushed the German forces!
Post Battle info
This battle was more convincing for the Soviets however the dice played a pretty big role in that as well. My opponents mistake was placing his units so far apart from each other, they couldn’t really support each other or focus their fire on a single target, like the T-34 or the impeding guard squads treading down the middle. Also, with little anti-tank prowess he forced himself into a proverbial corner really letting my T-34 doing what it want with the only concerns being the panzerfausts, hence the huge focus on them earlier to take them out. My list was a typical Soviet army, plenty of troops, plenty of support and the reliable T-34. The Germans struggled to match my firepower, numbers and luck.
My one-piece advice
Something worth mentioning is the anti-tank rifle versus a sniper, I fount the sniper to be kind of useless during this battle, but the anti-tank to be invaluable. The anti-tank rifle can still obliterate squads and has a higher chance of causing casualties due to the +2 pen, and only being 30 points, nearly half of the snipers 50 points. Two anti-tank rifle teams can do far more than the sniper with them only being +10 points, but able to take out armoured vehicles with 8 armour or less, having 4 wounds instead of two, having a much higher chance of removing veterans and putting in another order dice for 10 more points! Snipers hold their place in the army, but for a general purpose unit, the Anti-tank rifle literally out shoots the sniper in nearly every field.
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