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Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Doom and Goum

By Tom "Le Crotch" De Mayo

 A Goum sharpens his knife. Wikipedia.
Jon and I got together for a Flames of War Italy Campaign battle from the new Italy books. I decided I'd play my Goum army. My Goums are a funky side army I've had for a while. Way back when the first French PDF was released, and there were no BF models, I converted a Goum company using Resistant Roosters US greatcoats.

I did some headswaps and putty work to make the Djellabas and painted them up stripey.  Back in the day, Goums had no tank support at all -- this changed in Dogs and Devils, where they got actual BF models too. This was my first outing using the new Italy lists.

Goum Infantry Company (Tom)

3x Goum Infantry Platoon
Support with 2x HMG, 2x LMG
French Spahi Stuarts x5
US M10 Tank Destroyers x4
US 105 Artillery x4

Jon brought this weird company made mostly of armored artillery.  Most significantly for me, it had two units of Breakthrough Guns, capable of ignoring infantry armor saves.

Hermann-Goering Heavy Recon (Jon)
HQ SMG Faust X2
Pioneers in Trucks w/Supply Truck
4x Wespe with Observer
3x Hummels w/Staff and Observer
4x StuH
2x 8-rads
1x Tiger I E

The Game


We rolled up the "Dust Up" scenario. We each started in a corner, and our Delayed Reserves would then arrive in the quarter opposite the enemy. Jon placed some infantry, StuHs, and heavy artillery in his deployment zone. I put a platoon of Goums, my M10s, and my Stuarts.

The Board.  (The Goums are randomly using Soviet objective markers.)

Jon's deployment. Also my fearsome crotch.

My deployment.

My Stuarts ready themselves to rush forward.

Jon's StuHs in their initial position.
Jon's heavy artillery ready to fire.
Early Turns: the Clash of Armor

The first few turns became a battle between Jon's StuHs and my M10s and Stuarts. I pushed the Stuarts forward hoping either to flank his StuHs or attack his infantry and artillery. Jon obliged me by attacking with his StuHs, and I duly sprang my ambush. My combined armor decimated his StuHs, but did not kill them all. My flanking Stuarts whiffed horribly, letting the last one escape.

My Stuarts move forward and hide.

My M10s ambush the advancing StuHs.

My Stuarts attack some half-tracks as they try to flank the StuHs.

My Stuarts flank the StuHs but fail to finish them.

More inconclusive action from the Stuarts.

The M10s die, as Jon re-mounted and fired away.

My incoming Goums push towards Jon's objectives.

The Goums lack the heavy weapons needed to dig out the Panzergrens.

The artillery punish my Stuarts for their temerity.

The M10s are still dead.

The surviving Stuarts redeploy.
Later Turns: Infantry vs Artillery

By this time, my reserves of infantry and artillery began arriving. I hoped to push Jon's Infantry with my two Goum platoons, while laying down smoke or pinning with my 105s. Unfortunately for me, the cornfield completely blocked line of sight, rendering my 105s more or less useless.

Somewhat delayed, Jon brought a Tiger, 4 Wespes, and some armored cars onto the board. My Stuarts, stymied in their attempts to kill StuHs, raced back to counter them before they crushed my defending Goum platoon. 
More Goums arrive to assist my main assault.

The Goums founder on the German line.

The Tiger arrives...with characteristic crappy Tiger Ace skill.

So do the Wespes and armored cars.

My Goums assault the Panzergrens and consolidate forward.

The Tiger goes hunting Stuarts, who are hunting cars.

The Stuarts destroy a Wespe.

The Goums are blocked by the German defense.

The Bitter End

 My two attacking Goum platoons eventually killed about half the German infantry defenders, before being locked into place by the weight of remaining fire. Meanwhile, on the other side of the board, my Stuarts accounted for a few hulls, but eventually succumbed to Jon's tiger and artillery. With no way for me to advance on Jon's objective, and my defending infantry surrounded by Jon's guns, we called it a game.

6-1 in Jon's favor.


The Goum platoons are Trained and lack any integral AT assets, such as Bazookas. Thus, they have a lot of trouble against any sort of armor. Even light armor like Jon's presents them with a challenge. Being able to re-roll Platoon Morale Checks was a key to the German 6-1 victory. The Breakthrough Gun rule meant that he did not have to assault my Fearless troops to break my defense. Once my tanks were neutralized, the battle was his.

Tom de Mayo's looming crotch has brought terror and death to the battlefields of WW2 since WWPD's inception.  He is the lead author at our sister blog "Building a Better Boardgame"

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