In anticipation of Guns of August, our favorite little convention in Williamsburg, VA (ed: it's over now, and it was great!) much Flames of War list machinations for the 1650 mid-war tournament were discussed on the podcast.
This immediately lead to the "this list is better than that one" talk that gamers always do. So, instead of letting the speculation lie Luke and I decided to get in some practice and test some theories out. The game saw his US Armored Rifles vs. my Soviet Tankovy duking it out in a good old fashioned Free for All.
Luke's list was made up of 5 Lees, 4 M10s, 2 Armored Rifle platoons, Recon, Mortars, and the special American higher command team General Harmon just for good measure.
My Soviet list looked like 10 T26s, 4 KVs with Tankos (tank riders for those of you not familiar with the nomenclature), 5 T26s, 5 BA10s, Rota in M3s, Air with rockets and 10 BA 10s to six platoons. Luke had the first turn. We both had no illusions as to how this was going to go down -- a bloody 4-3 to one way or the other was inveitable so we were all in turn one.
Soviet Recon move with 15 BA10s moving out.
Soviet Right flank.
US Left flank facing the 10 BA10s and a KV
US center scouts mortars and M10 recon.
US right with CO and ARP
Soviet center BA10s, KVs, and 5 T26s
Turn one Luke's Lees kill two T26s and bail two.
The Lees will eat these guys for lunch with very little worry at long range of return fire.
But I have learned 10 T26s that are fearless are surprisingly resilient
Luke failed to dig in his ARP, on my turn one I use the road and speed to get close.
With no Hen Chicks here comes 10 47mm gun shots, 15 50cal shots and 22 MG shots..
The ARP loses 5 stands...ouch.
The M10 scouts lose two jeeps only one left in the back of the woods.
The air plane kills two Lees and the T26s bail a Lee.
On Luke's turn he moves away from this flank taking pot shots at the T26s -- killing a couple. He also was able to bail out the Rota from their M3s, plus he killed a couple BA 10s with bazookas.
The ARP moves to the center as the planed attack on the T26 flank is scrubbed.
Luke pops the M10 ambush behind the woods and has to move to get good shots he uses his 50 cals on the trained BA 10s only getting bails. On the Russian turn the BA 10s fail the fearless but one BA 10 gets a kill on the M10s, the hen and chick rule for the KVs mean they whiff when they get around to shooting.
The Soviet CO presses the attack on the Lees since they can't hurt him.
Since the Rota was bailed out of their transports I decide to go for it the assault. This is not a good one as I can only get a couple of swings. The BA 10s killed everybody nearby in the shooting phase. Luke has five shots in defensive fire, scores 4 hits on my trained Rota. Then I fail all four saves! Ouch.
The now gutted Rota kill a few US troopers in the assault before being killed to a man, the ARP fails the morale check with a CO reroll and this is what is left on the objective....nothing.
On Luke's turn his Lees clock two more T26s from the 5 Tank platoon and they fail the fearless and run.
In a tournament all this 5 tank platoon does is hide, but this was a moment to go all in! I pushed them too far forward just to get a cheap kill on a half track.
Luke's M10s shoot the KVs and he rolls terrible, the shots that do hit the KVs front armor 9 bounce.
The BA10s move to surround the objective and get shots on the ARP and M10s.
The BA10s and KVs finish off the M10s
His ARP is the only force left that could threaten the objective of his I just took but they are too far away to make it in time to stave off defeat.
Game ends 4-3 to the Soviets with the 5 tank T26s and Rota being killed.
Then we played a great game of "Game of Thrones" with the guys.
The Soviet Mixed Tankovy with 15 BA10s and Rota are a salty combination if you ask me. The only weak spot is the T26s and they even do well vs light stuff since they have numbers. Luke's theory of the Lees crushing T26s was and is correct. The problem is while you are doing that the BA10s and Rota with their 47 shots of firepower are winning somewhere else. I have found even a dug in ARP will crack after two to three turns when you can get up to 57 shots while stationary. After the game Luke decided he made a mistake in deployment and never should have put the Lees and ARP on the far left flank to go on the offensive.
Cool pants, Tarzan, Dirty John and "The Steve" can be heard making more wild predictions on the podcast.