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Saturday, February 12, 2011

FoW AAR: Armored Panzergrens vs Tyne & Tees

  • HQ + 2 Panzerfausts
  • Gepanzerte Panzergrenadiers + Panzerfaust
  • Gepanzerte Panzergrenadiers + Panzerfaust
  • Gepanzerte Armored SP AA (2x 10/5)
  • 4x Stug G
  • 4x Marder III H
  • 3x Pumas
  • Armored Panzerwerfers w/ crew
  • **Kamfgruppe 1 10/5 SPAA to get to 8 platoons

Tyne & Tees British Rifles
  • HQ + Stan Hollis + Troop Carrier
  • Full Rifle Platoon
  • Full Rifle Platoon
  • Full Rifle Platoon
  • 3x Crocs
  • 4x M10c
  • Armored Platoon (3 Shermans + 1 Firefly)
  • Priority Typhoons

The mission is Breakout. This mission has a reputation as being very difficult on the defender right now on the Flames of War forums. If you haven't taken a look at it, I encourage you to head over to the downloads page and have a look. Because the mission is a defensive battle, Sean will be the defender as my mechanized panzergrenadiers are more mobile. Sean must use the mobile reserves rule, which states only 1 "mobile" platoon may be placed on the board. Sean elects to start with all 3 rifle platoons and his crocs. This leaves his M10s and Shermans ready to race on from the opposite corner and attempt to link up with his troops to grab the centralized objectives.

I, too, must place at least half of my force in reserves. Thankfully, my clever kamfgruppe gives me 8 platoons, 2 of which are teeny tiny. Despite Sean having air support, I elect to leave both AA platoons off the board. Likewise, knowing his crocs are impervious to both, I leave the Stugs and Marders in reserve. This leaves me with 2 panzergrenadier units, Pumas, and armored rockets to seize the objectives early and hang in there.


Sean's deployment is the upper left corner. I have two opposite deployment corners in the bottom left (Pumas and Panzergrenaders), and the top right (Panzergrenadiers and panzerwerfers). Sean's reserves will arrive in the bottom right. The two objectives are centrally located, both on the road. I decide to begin with everyone mounted up. I apologize for the crummy pictures, it was very dark in the war room this night.

Panzergrenadiers and Pumas.

A horde of limeys.

British deployment.

The other German deployment zone.

Pumas make a recon move.


Panzergrenadiers race down the road.

Pumas prepare for Sean's reserves.

Self-defense AA MGs get wildly lucky and shoot down a lone Typhoon!

Crocs double time down the road.

British rifles move to the edge of the wood.

The British view after turn one.





Top of 2. No one got any reserves on turn 1.

Armored rockets slam into the British rifles, causing light casualties.

Panzergrenadiers deploy, but keep their transports close.

Typhoons swoop in but fail to range in!

Crocs press forward as British rifles take up positions in the farm house.

A second rifle platoon moves forward.


3 Rifle Stands



Top of three. Again no reserves in the previous turn.

The first German reserves arrive. Marder IIIs take long range shots at one of the crocs showing it's side armor, and send it up in flames!

Halftrack machine guns and rockets wreak havoc on the British riflemen.

Stugs also arrive from reserve.

The other Panzergrenadier platoon pushes through the wood.

With 1 tank knocked out, and the British rifles just out of range to assist the crocs, the German panzergrenadier commander rallies his men and surges forward!

The end result is 2 more dead crocs and 3 knocked out panzergrenadier teams.

Stugs move forward, ready to combat the British reserves.

Halftrack MG fire is devastating to the British infantry in the open.

British reserves also arrive! M10s line up shots on the pumas, but completely fail to hit their target!

Shermans take long range shots on both the Stugs and the Panzerwerfers, but miss their mark.

Typhoons swoop in and knock out a transport and an MG team from the 2nd Panzergrenadier platoon!

Rifle fire from the British knocks out another Panzergrenadier team, putting them just below half! Even with the urging of the company commander, the platoon runs away taking him with them. Goodbye 5 halftracks worth of Machine gun fire!


Croc Platoon
8 Rifle Stands

Company Command
Panzergrenadier Platoon
1 halftrack, 1 panzergrenadier stand


Turn Four.

Rockets, Stugs, Marders, and Pumas eviscerate the M10s. The remaining tank hunter runs away!

Marders even score some long range hits!

Typhoons come screaming in and knock out a Marder.

Shermans race forward!

With no more half track MGs in their way, British rifles surge forward.


Croc Platoon
M10c Platoon
8 Rifle Stands

Company Command
Panzergrenadier Platoon
1 halftrack, 1 panzergrenadier stand
1 Armored Rocket Launcher
1 Marder III M


A few of Sean's Shermans are cut out of the picture just to the right.

Marder IIIs redeploy to MG the British infantry.

The 2iC's kamfgruppe arrives from reserve, halftrack MG blazing!

Stugs, Pumas, and Panzerwerfers knock out Sean's Sherman platoon.


With nothing mobile left on the board, Sean decides to call the game at this point. HOWEVER- we decide that in a tournament setting, Sean could (at this point) dig in and try to hold on for as long as possible. He contests both objectives and does have veteran british infantry with Stan Hollis in their midst. So despite the game going 5-2 to me, we appreciate the fact that Sean is not in a completely hopeless situation.

So, is this mission unbalanced for the defender? Having only played it a few times, I think that with balanced lists on a balanced board, it is just a bit difficult on the defender. Sean and I discussed what tweaks we think would make it more fair, and have two suggestions: EITHER let the defender choose to have the battle be a night fight… OR let the defender deploy one platoon so that they can begin the game holding the objectives. On the whole, however, we agree that we simply do not have enough experience with the mission to be authorities and agree that for now it's best to leave it as is until we truly have a better feel for it.

It had been a little while since Sean and I got in a game of Flames of War- it was good times!


freekickhero said...

Thanks for the report. Liked the composition of both forces and it sounds like the action was nearly non-stop! I like reading your analysis about the different mission types, I played in a local tourney today and the missions were Enounter, Fighting Withdrawal and Free for All.

Playing American Paras (One of 2 total allied players in a field of 15), I can safely say I was underwhelmed with the scenario choices.

Keep up the good work, looking forward to the next podcast!

simallet said...

One platoon defending the objective would make a lot of sense. It gives the defender more reason to use the "prepared positions" rule and you'd realistically have been unlikely to leave such a significant point (crossroads in this case) completely undefended.

Great Bat Rep though, bit of a slugfest in the end. Did either of you think losing the croc's so early had any effect on the outcome though?

indierockclimber said...

I think the crocs hurt, but honestly I'm not sure they were the turning point.

Still, the mission is a neat idea- just needs to be tweaked a bit I think.

jmezz382 said...

Great to see Sean's forces in a game. MG fire destroyed my infantry in the same mission at Muster. Although my Engineers repayed the loss in bazooka fire !!!

Breakthrough is a tough mission and really places a sense of urgency on the defender.

Great game !

indierockclimber said...

Joe, this is Breakout not Breakthrough. Similar, but different enough. Breakthrough is quite a bit more balanced in my opinion- but same general concept!

jmezz382 said...

Silly me .... I was reading it with a 2 yr old climbing on me. I regress ;)

pachongo3000 said...

Sorry so late to comment. It was a solid game. It was good to play again. I do think a non-mobile platoon defending the center would tip the scales, but I am not sure that it would tip them too much.
# Freekick- Thanks for the comment. New missions really give the game flavor.
#simallet- Agree clearly with the one platoon, and I think it makes sense. It was a slugfest. I had never used crocs and it hurt to lose them. It afforded me the opportunity to use them better in the future. I don't think that is the point I lost, though. I don't value any "super" platoons and had I planned better, perhaps could have worked it. It did hurt, though. :)

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