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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Top Five (Plus One) Early War Tanks

6) The Machine-Gun Box: Honorable Mention goes to anything wheeled or tracked that mounts a machine-gun. Extra kudos if it has TA 1. German Panzer Is, British Mark VIs, even half-tracks and armored cars. Light vehicles are so cheap and assault so well, that they put the Blitz into Blitzkreig. Pity EW infantry when a Panzer I costs less than 40 points.
5) The Hotchkiss: All the Hotchkiss variants share the same advantages. They are very cheap and very tough. FA 3 offers significant protection in EW. These tough little nuggets can hold objectives, discourage assaults, or machine-gun infantry. They can even occasionally kill tanks.
4) The Somua: A Somua’s heavy front armor protects it at range against most German opponents of AT 6 or less. Its own gun can make hash of light tanks in return. Against an unprepared opponent, a force of SOMUAs can grind up the middle of the table, pausing to blast infantry out of their holes or destroy opposing vehicles. Unfortunately, against a foe with a heavier gun, the disadvantages of French One-Man Turrets become readily apparent.

3) Panzer IV D: Words cannot express my love for this tank. It fulfills a really important role for the Germans, able to reliably crack open the tough French armor. With At 7, only the very heaviest tanks can survive its fire. With a FP 3+, things it shoots stay dead. (I hate those annoying EW bails.) Still, at 150 points it's darn pricey – a specialty tank, not a mainstay.

2) A13 Cruiser: The 6 pounder is a really awesome gun in EW. Combined with Tally Ho! for rapid–fire, the British Cruiser tanks can kill any German vehicle. With the price change, their glory days may have passed, but they are still formidable opponents.
1) Panzer II C: The Panzer II is an inexpensive workhorse tank, with a fairly average AT 5, FP 5+ gun. Upgraded to FA2, it is quite survivable and with RoF 3, it can win gun duels with most light opponents. It's cheap enough to take in mass quantities for assaults and flanking swarms.

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