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Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Bolt Action - My US Anti-Tank Force for MOAB

By Patch,

Some of you may be aware that I have painted up a force of US Airborne (guide here) and I have been looking forward to fielding them in the biggest Sydney event of the year being MOAB in October. I have been dithering around on listing for awhile now and was almost settled on an all vet Paratrooper force however was just not happy with it. A few days ago I decided to go for something different and field a regular Gilder force instead.

MOAB is a 1250 point open event with no restrictions and can include armoured platoons. This adds a real challenge to listing as you can be facing a really broad range of threats and you will need the tools to deal with them all. I have come up with the following which is loosely themed around Market Garden (hence the British Sherman). I say it is loosely themed as I am not running a historically accurate list, there are things which I have substituted accuracy for game mechanics or because I have one and want to use it.  My miniatures are also Airborne but for my purposes they will proxy nicely as Glider troops.

1250 points - 15 order dice - All regular - Two platoons

1st Lt + 1 x 2
8 man Glider squad - 3 SMG and 1 BAR x 4
Medium Machine Gun team
Bazooka Team x 2
Medium Mortar Team
Light Howizter
Medium AT Gun
M4A1 Sherman
1 1/2 Tonne Truck with MMG.
Armoured Jeep with twin Bazookas

I am calling this an anti-tank force as I am expecting some serious metal on tables this time around and I am loading for bear. In total there are four bazookas and two medium AT guns in addition to a medium mortar and light howitzer that can take out armour. My intention is to place the AT gun and two bazookas on the table and create a threat zone for any enemy armour wanting to advance. The Sherman and bazooka jeep will come on as flankers and hopefully trap any enemy armour between the two groups.

Enemy armour is most dangerous when allowed to roam freely and target your infantry and support teams at close range. I am hoping this force will really put pressure on my opponents and force them to hesitate and keep their assets bottled up way back on their own table side.

I have four solid infantry squads, nothing flash or amazing but just solid. They have enough SMG's to be very potent short range and in close combat and rifles and the BAR to reach out and have some distance. I will have at least one squad and possibly an Lt flanking in the truck to support the tank leaving three plus another Lt to hold my line and advance up the table as required.

My support units of an MMG, Mortar and Light Howitzer will be my backline and do what they do best - reach out and threaten my opponents infantry teams. Every one of those units can reach into the opponents deployment zone from turn one so they will be a threat from the start.

I think this is a generalist list that should be able to take on all variety of armies that I may come across. Again it is built more for the mechanics than historical accuracy so please take that into consideration, if it helps think of it as a Hollywood plot for an upcoming WW2 movie.

 **Out of the darkened Holland skies swoop the Gliders carrying the 325th Infantry Regiment and their support elements (Camera moves inside a Glider) images of troopers looking concerned, one is sleeping. BANG - CRASH - BOOM Gliders land and slowly come to a stop after destroying several barns and running over a cow**

**From a damaged Glider a soldier can be seen exiting and dusting off his uniform, he looks around and seeing something reaches down and picks it up, its his helmet and with a flourish he put it on his head. The dawn sun glints of the Lieutenant rank insignia on the front of the helmet as he surveys the countryside.Turning to another soldier that had come up to him the officer says "Sergeant, we got a war to fight, lets roll out!"**

**The camera pans out as the soldiers gather their kit whilst in the distance flashed from an artillery bombardment can be seen. The rumble of a tank can be heard along with the sound of British voices mumbling about the weather as a British Sherman pulls up and the soldiers climb aboard**

Coming soon to a cinema near you!

I have built a display board specially for it and am throwing the challenge out there to the other players to do the same. I managed to scrape in best painted army last MOAB with my LRDG and I am hoping to do the same this year with these guys but I think there will be some serious competition!

For the twin bazooka jeep I have used a Rubicon kit and some plasticard, I am not known for my own customization work so am happy it even resembles what it is supposed to. I still have to add the crew for the jeep and a gunner for the truck but have plenty of time yet to do that.

So that's it from me, I will report back and let you know the list went but before I go I have invited Casey to come on and have his say on what he think honestly about my force.


Let's see where did I put that red marker? 

Casey here, I will be going over Patch's list from a different view point. I am instantly hesitant of the medium AT gun based on personal experiences, but with the rising popularity of armored platoons comprising of a mass of cheap light tanks boasting a 40k Ork like quantity of medium machine guns...well maybe that AT gun is not such a bad idea. The AT gun, bazooka teams, and the brilliant bazooka jeep should cover most armored threats. You might struggle against the heaviest of armor but realistically when was the last time you saw a King Tiger or Pershing on the table at an event?

Infantry is what wins battles in Bolt Action, a tank can do some considerable damage but they won’t take home the gold without infantry support. Your glider squads look good along with the ubiquitous MMG. I personally would be tempted to trade out the Mortar for a Sniper. Again, that is based on personal experience. I have done well with snipers taking out enemy snipers, officers, and putting pins in the enemy backfield. Leave it up to your light howitzer to harass the enemy back line.

My only true concern is your lack of veteran Infantry. The name of the game in version 2 is to put vets down on an objective. Your opponent will need some serious firepower and dice rolling to break them. Coming off of a highly competitive tournament just last weekend, it only reinforces my opinion that veteran infantry are your bread winners. You will pay a price to have them though and I am leery of cutting anything out of our list.

Overall Patch I think this list is a very effective force against numerous other list types. Using only Reg infantry, you will need to play the down order and cover to your best advantage. An outflank with the Zook jeep and truck could be devastating to your opponent as well. 

What do you guys think of the list?

Check out some of our other great articles:

1. How to paint LRDG vehicles
2. How to paint Japanese Infantry 
3. How to paint French Colonial Troops 
4. Ghost Army Podcast 

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