British V Deutsche Afrika Korp – Engagement

The Easter long weekend and my mate Tom was keen to catch up, so what better time to (finally) play some more Flames of War?

Mission and Table

I rolled up engagement for the mission. Tom won the roll off and was the attacker. Objectives were placed more or less opposite each other. My side (the one with the two ridges) had one behind the rough terrain on my left flank, and the other just behind the ridge in the centre. Tom has one just over the hill and the other I placed near the road on the other side of the field.

Forces

We just ran with everything we had (only my force fits an organisation chart).

German:

HQ with two Panzer III Ls

Two Panzer platoons – 1st with two Panzer IV F2s, two Panzer III Ls and a Panzer III N, 2nd with one Panzer IV F2, two Panzer III Ls and one Panzer III N

Heavy anti-aircraft battery with two Flak 88s with extra crew (so rate of fire 3)

Priority air support from Ju87G Stukas

 

British

HQ and two heavy armoured platoons with three shermans a piece

Light armour platoon with three honey stuarts

Kingforce armour platoon with three Churchill IIIs – this platoon wasn’t actually part of the force organisation chart, but we were doing a fun “use everything” battle, so it came under the company’s command

Sporadic air support from Hurricane IIICs

 

Order of Battle

I deployed my Flak 88s on the objective on my left flank and my second Panzer platoon behind the ridge in the centre. Tom positioned a platoon of Shermans in the centre of the field and the Churchills on the road.

19 - British Advance

I had first turn and did a big fat load of nothing. Meeting Engagement meant I couldn’t call in air support. Reserves were on delay. I didn’t want to sneak my Panzers out yet, and I made the call that the Flak 88s couldn’t fire (everything for me was supposed to count as having moved, Flak 88s are immobile. So I considered they’d been towed on and set up). Tom similarly did little, moving up his Shermans and Churchills. The Shermans opened fire on the Flak 88s, but were in effective.

Turn 2 and I kept my Panzers still again. My Stukas came in and wrecked two Churchills, while my Flak 88s bust open a single Sherman. Tom’s turn and the lone Churchill stuck around and moved up. The Shermans returned fire on the Flak 88s, but again were ineffective.

Turn 3 and there were no reserves to be seen. With two of the Churchills dead and the third showing me side armour, I moved out my Panzers. The Flak 88s wrecked the remaining two Shermans, but my Panzers couldn’t penetrate the Churchill’s armour. Toms turn and his Churchill turned to take on my Panzers, and his Hurricanes showed up to strafe my Flaks. The Hurricanes managed to take out a Flak, but the Churchill’s shots were ineffective.

Turn 4 and I still had no reserves. My Stukas came in again as I moved my Panzers up. The Churchill took a hit from the Stukas, but somehow wasn’t knocked out. The Churchill failed to remount, and the Hurricanes didn’t show up either.

Turn 5 and finally my first Panzer platoon showed up, driving in on the centre of the field. My Stukas were back as my Panzers continued their advance. Once more I just couldn’t crack the Churchill. British reinforcements also arrived in the form of two Sherman platoons (including the HQ). They came in from the corner opposite the Flak 88 though, which was not ideal. The Churchill remounted and decided to advance, opening fire and scoring one kill on the second Panzer platoon. Unfortunately the Shermans were out of range.

Turn 6 and my Panzers made it onto the objective, if I started next turn with them on it I’d end the battle. My final lot of reserves, the command platoon, showed up in the centre of the field. Meanwhile, my Stukas again tried to knock out the last Churchill but failed. The second Panzer platoon moved up to engage it but were likewise ineffective. Meanwhile my Flak bailed a single Sherman. The Sherman failed to remount while the others moved up. Unfortunately for me the Honey Stuarts not only showed up, but arrived right in front of my Panzers. The Hurricanes also came back for another strafe. The dice were not in Tom’s favour though and by the end of the shooting phase, only a single Panzer from the first platoon was destroyed.

Turn 7 and I turned everything in the centre towards the Shermans on the left. My Stukas were back, this time on the Shermans. When the guns stopped firing, one of the Sherman platoons and the Honey Stuarts were all smoking wrecks. The battle was all but over, but Tom shifted up his Shermans (the bailed one remounted) anyway. The Shermans failed to do anything, but the Churchill took out two more Panzers and the last Panzer from the first platoon quit the field.

 

Turn 8 and my second platoon was on the far right objective uncontested. Victory to Germany! It was a good battle, though the dice were definitely in my favour. Tom was a big fan of snake eyes, and he really could have used one of the Sherman platoons on the other flank.

Next Time

I’ve a game of Bolt Action, and hopefully some SAGA too, teed up for next Saturday. In addition, Thursday night is Guild Ball. Finally, I finished Kraken yesterday and Veteran Siren today. Unfortunately Sakana’s blister was baseless, so I’ll need to solve that problem before I can do any work on him.

Happy wargaming!

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Operation Iron Centaur

Well what do you know, it’s neither Guild Ball pitch ideas or things for D&D, it’s an Infinity after-action report! Note: apologies the images of the game are a bit washed out, I always forget to shut the blind to cut the sunlight down.

Table and Mission

 

I rolled up Antenna Field for the mission and we set the points value at 300 for a regular game. The table set up I did gave some pretty sweet firing lanes, but some good positives and negatives to both sides. One of the two story buildings in particular had sight over four of the objectives (represented by my weapon cates).

The two classified objectives I drew were both hacking ones – Data Scan and HVT: Espionage – which made me pretty glad I made a last minute tweak to my strike team!

Ariadna Strike Team

I took a pretty standard, skirmish and camo heavy, “grab all the objectives and mine them to hell” force:

Group 1:

Colonel Voronin (Lt)

2x Chasseur (Forward Observer)

2x Grunt (Inferior infiltration, heavy flamethrower)

Spesnatz (Ambush camo, HMG)

Assault Pack

Marauder (Paramedic)

Isobel McGregor (Rifle, Assault Pistol)

Group 2:

Cataren (T2 Sniper)

2x Caledonian Volunteers (Chain rifle)

2x Foxtrot Rangers (henceforth known as FTRs)

Tankhunter (Portable Autocannon)

Isobel was the late inclusion. I don’t usually take her because frankly just taking a Wardriver is a better deal. But I had the points and didn’t really have anything to spend the extra points a Wardriver would free up on.

I also wanted to use some things that my mate, Matty, hadn’t seen before. That led to the inclusion of the Assault Pack and the Cataren (who I try to work in to every list any way after in his second mission he netted over 200pts in kills).

Tactics for this list are pretty standard: flamethrowers (hopefully) infiltrate in; Chasseurs and FTRs infiltrate as far up as possible, get to the objectives ASAP and unload their mines; heavy hitters (Spesnatz, Tankhunter and Cataren) pick things off and hold the line; Volunteers guard the deployment.

Deployment

I won the WIP off and took first turn. If you’ve read any of my Operation Flamestrike reports you’ll know this is pretty standard for me. If I don’t win it, my opponent usually gives it to me. So I’m used to having to make my moves first and clear out nasty sniper and HMG nests.

Matty surprised me and took the deployment without the two storey buildings. They were brilliant sniper nests and I knew he had two (pre-game talk).

My Grunts failed their infiltration rolls, which was pretty bad, but these things happen and you shouldn’t plan a game around having models in your opponents half of the field. I settled with putting one a piece on my far left and right flanks.

Then, from left to right, the Handler took the painted building; just in front the girder pile on the left flank one of the Chasseurs and FTRs infiltrated; the decoy and Tankhunter took the top of the left two story building, the Spetsnatz at the base; Isobel was on the ground floor of the middle two storey building, reading to dash out and hold my antenna; the second FTR infiltrated as far forward in the middle as possible; then behind the shipping container on the right were the Antipodes and cataren; in front of them was the second Chassuer and the Marauder.

Finally, Voronin and a Caledonian were in the back centre and the last Caledonian was on the ground floor of the left two storey building.

I can’t recall the precise Tohaa deployment, but the basics were as follows. The left flank had a TO camo marker right up next to the building my Chasseur was in (a Clipsos). The L shaped building on the left had a Triad including an engineer with a K1 rifle. In the centre of the field was a sapper with a viral sniper. Finally the building on the far right was loaded up with three Triads. Two Gao-Raels, one with a sniper the other with a spitfire and each in a different Triad were set up to cover the field from cover. Out of sight were a couple of Makauls, an engineer and some Kamaels.

09-camo-on-the-left

Turn One – Ariadna

First order of the game saw a move move from the Antipodes with their irregular order. The Gao-Rael with the spitfire discovered the front one, so I decided to hold off pumping orders in them for now. If he had failed, I certainly would have.

07-antipode-advance

Instead, in response I moved my Cataren up. Climbing the two storey building on the right in the mid section of the field with climbing plus, the Gao-Rael sniper failed to discover him before he went prone. Creeping him up I lined up a shot on the spitfire alone. Queue two orders in which I failed to kill the spitfire and almost lost my own head for the trouble. With only a single order in Group 2 left, I decided to leave it for now and see what else I could achieve.

12-cataren

A succession of orders to Group One saw both Chasseurs move up and hit prone without being discovered to plant themselves next to the antennae on the left and right of the field. Then came the mines, one on the left, two on the right. Isobel also moved up and prone next to the antenna on the edge of my deployment.

With the objectives secure, it was time to pump orders into my Spesnatz and shift him to deal with the Gao-Rael sniper. What we didn’t realise was a Kamael on the ground floor could also see him when he broke camo to take his shots. The sniper had chosen to discover, so I went with two free shots on him, the Kamael took the other two – also free shots because Matty failed to consider the -12 thanks to camo, surprise shot, cover and range. The result? A single hit on the sniper which was saved.

At this point I had a single order in both combat groups left. I’d secured the objectives, but I was set to have a full and highly efficient Tohaa murder list coming at me. I put another order into the Spesnatz, two shots a piece again. The sniper shot back, the Kamael dodged. Both failed and not only did all my shots hit home, they took a crit a piece. Both then failed their armour saves, leaving the Kamael Very Dead and the sniper unconscious. The kicker was that both were leaders to their respective Triad – two deaths and two broken links. Not good for Tohaa!

But it got worse. With my last order the Cataren was back up and going toe to toe with the spitfire. Both shots landed home and both saves were failed. The last Gao-Rael was turned to red mist from a total for four wounds and the third triad on the right was broken.

Turn One – Tohaa

It was more or less all over red rover for Matty’s Tohaa at this point. The loss of the Kamael was no biggie, but the two Gao-Raels were a big chunk of his killing power. On top of that, I’d broken three triads. None the less, he persevered.

He reformed a triad on the right with two Makauls and a bio-engineer. They then spent several orders throwing eclipse grenades for some and moving to creep up the field without my Cataren being able to do anything in response. They broke through the smoke out of my Cataren’s field of fire and unleashed a double shot heavy flamethrower on my Antipodes.

08-tohaa-on-the-right

The dogs nimbly dodged the flames and used kinemetika to move closer to the triad. The last order from the makaul triad saw them move into close combat with my Antipodes using assault to get in also. The result was a 2v3 melee which ended in a stalemate – a 16 and 20 saved one dog from the nasty viral close combat weapon.

Over on the other flank, the triad with the K1 rifle moved up – also using eclipse grenades to cover their advance. Matty took a risk and broke through the smoke with a move move. I took the opportunity to pop my tankhunter, firing on the engineer. The K1 rifle was promptly blown apart by the autocannon, yet more pain for the Tohaa.

07-sapper-in-the-centre

At this point it was clear the game was all but over. Matty decided to leap his Makaul on the left into combat with my Chasseur – whom he easily dispatched, unfortunately my mine did the same to him. The sapper and the tankhunter had a shoot out, but again my luck came through with another 16 and 20 save against a viral sniper shot.

Turn Two – Ariadna

13-right-flank

We played out the melee in full over three orders, in each an Antipode died. You don’t get to see close combat in Infinity all that often and certainly not a brawl like we had going. It was certainly the highlight, even if the Makauls were head and shoulders above my dogs.

With the Antipodes all dead, I moved my grunt on the right out from the building and took out the Makauls in two successive orders with my light shotgun. He even survived a heavy flamethrower for his trouble.

Finally the tankhunter blew the sapper into tiny little pieces with his autocannon.

End Game

I still had plenty of orders left, but with the Tohaa left with a single Clipsos and a bunch of Kamaels in full retreat, there really wasn’t much point.

We didn’t bother tallying the score, but it would have been something like 6-0.

Aftermath

Neither of us had played since April-May, so we were a bit rusty. Matty took the side he did because of his sapper, which couldn’t get good lines of fire on the side of the board with the better sniper/HMG nests. The Kamael on the ground floor that the Spesnatz took out was very poorly positioned (he wasn’t in cover). Also has the models out in the open assigned as the link leader was a Very Bad Idea.

For me, there wasn’t anything that I did that struck me as a poor move. Moving the grunt out before the combat had ended would have been smarter, but it wasn’t necessary. Everything operated as it should and my plan went off without a hitch, more or less.

Personally I find Tohaa quite a formidable faction to come up against – especially given my preference for first turn. Tohaa are a very strong reactive turn faction. But if you can break their triads they really break down quickly. Hopefully Matty has better luck next time and we get a better game – our last match back in April was a real nailbiter that ended in a draw.

Next Time

Progress on my Welshmen isn’t as good as I had hoped, but I’ve been busier than expected. They should be done before Christmas though, so I’ll be happy with that. I’ve draft a few posts on some different things, so I’ll pick one of those for next time.

Until then, happy wargaming.

 

Friday Post – 18th of November, 2016

Well now, haven’t the months flown since my last post? It’s been quite an unproductive winter this year, none the less I’m starting to do things again. I’m not sure when I will have an after action report again, but for now I am sorting out a few wordy-picturey posts as I paint things, plus some various thoughts posts.

Today I’ve just a quick overview of what’s been happening. I might try fit some pictures in to make it more interesting.

Get out of Here, Winter

Winter was Very Crazy.

You may or may not be aware that the entirety of my state (South Australia) lost power for about eight hours (for those of us in the metro area, it took days to restore power to some regional areas) in late September. The outage occurred when a series of tornadoes (not something that occurs here and certainly nothing those in the US would have experienced) ripped across the state and took out something like 22-29 high voltage transmission pylons, brining down two out of our three high voltage transmission lines. As a result of the ensuing voltage collapse, power generation went into safety shutdown, ditto the interconnector with Victoria. And so the state was plunged into a blackout. Making my way home from work, I’ve never seen the CBD so busy as I made my way home. Also it was pissing with rain.

On the whole for this winter, the rain was incessant, the wind incredible. We are well above average rainfall and I can say that everyone is thoroughly sick of the wet and cold weather. Spring has finally arrived proper though (only two months late) and with it my enthusiasm to paint things, play games and maybe make some more terrain.

I’ve not been wholly ideal however. My mate Dan and I are finally playing X-Wing regularly. We’ve been playing weekly for at least three months now. It’s also encouraged me to expand my X-Wing collection, mostly with for my Rebels (Dan mainly plays Imperial, but is building up a Scum collection too). X-Wing is a fun game and maybe I should try some after action reports for it some time. Though personally I find it better suited to video reports. Below is my X-Wing collection, less my two ARC-170s which I picked up the other month. also my second X-Wing T70 (I think the other is somewhere in the X-Wing mass there. If not, I have two).

20160806_161302

I’ve finally started on my American Civil War stuff and have nearly completed my first infantry battalion. It just needs to be based. Unfortunately because of the way I’m basing my stuff I’ll need an extra box of infantry and an extra box of zouvaes. Also an extra box of artillery because of the gun I’ve misplaced (which annoys me greatly).

afternoons-work

The above lot was actually done bay in May. Blimey…

20160820_150348

I got the SDKFz (above) done in September, but I knocked the right headlight off and blowed if I can find the bugger. It’s probably been vaccumed by now. I’m also missing the top hatch – which annoys me more – I don’t ever recal it being packed with the model, so that’s annoying.

I’m also slowly painting my Guild Ball minis. I picked up a couple of starter sets earlier in the year and I’m slowly working through those. I might try find some opponents soon to learn the game. Not so sure about that but. Pictures in the future when everything is done.

Finally, I’ve painted a few things for D&D. We’ve been playing very regularly (for me) and I can safely say 2016 has been the year I’ve played the most D&D (approximately fortnightly). Playing regularly has really spurred my enthusiasm for the game and I’ve now got a second group going through Curse of Strahd. I’ll endeavour to do a post with some pics and tales in the future.

Next Time

I’m considering what to prioritise painting, but first will definitely be Siren for my Fishermen and basing the first battalion for my Union army. Next I am likely to (finally) tackle my Welsh starter force for SAGA because once that is painted, I’ll have two 4pt forces and will be able to play a game against my brother or mate Tom (my opponent in my Bolt Action and Flames of War AARs).

In the meantime I’ll see about using my downtime at work to whip up a few short progress posts to put up on a regular basis for the rest of the year. So until then, happy wargaming.