Sunday, March 25, 2012

GREAT Flames Gaming Day

So DylanGould and I paired up against 3000 points of Soviet armor. Historically accurate? No. Fun? Hell yes! We played on an eight foot table, Hasty Attack, which meant that we started with half our forces in reserve, had Delayed Reserves which meant they didn't come on for a long time, and had Scattered Reserves which meant that they didn't come on where we wanted to. Yikes! To add insult to injury, Dylan and I were both playing 5 Platoon armies, which meant that only 2 of our armies got to start on the board from each army. Yeck. So I started with an eight gun battery of 25 pounder arty, which I set up around our two objectives on the forward edge of some woods. I figured they could fire bombardments and shoot direct fire at anything which tried to get close. Dylan deployed a full Armored Rifle Platoon around the same objective. I took one platoon of Cromwells + Firefly, attached my CO and 2ic, and sent them up the right flank. Dylan deployed a battery of Priests (armored arty) on the right flank too. So facing us... 3000 points of Soviet armor. Two T-34 Platoons with Tank Escorts on one, two units of honkin' huge Assault Guns (one with Tank Escorts), an eight gun arty battery, a mechanized infantry platoon, and some other peripherals. Now, he had the same reserve status as we did, so we didn't face the full might of his army all at once. But he deployed his arty and his assault guns and some 85 mm Heavy Anti-aircraft (really anti-tank) guns, and basically moved up and started pounding on us. I spent most of the game trying to turn his right flank and roll up his arty park, but he was able to stop me with some assault guns which had a hard time killing my Cromwells, but which also refused to die due to ridiculous armor values. His first assault gun platoon rolled up and parked in front of our defensive positions and volley fired us turn after turn. They had breakthrough guns (ignore saves) and 2+ firepower, so every turn they picked off defending troops and guns. His arty kept my arty well surpressed (my guns are Reluctant, so had a hard time unpinning), but at the same time our defensive position was too tough for him to just assault into without weakening it. His reserves came on and he rolled his two large T-34/85 Platoons up the center headed for our gut. Our turn came, and we got a platoon of Cromwells and a Firefly. The Firefly scooted over to a hedge to the right of the objective, with a clear field of fire onto the front side of the objective. The Cromwells double moved to the left and stayed concealed behind the woods that the objective was in. We were able to start popping a few of his T-34s with the Firefly, some direct fire from the Priests and some long-range Cromwell fire (the order this stuff happened in might be a little off but the general idea is there). We got a platoon of Sherman 76's and sent them running up the left flank towards our objective, and put some pressure on him, causing one of the T-34 platoons to divert off to the left. Finally, he committed to trying to take the objective, and killed a few infantry men in assault, moving up to claim. On our turn we got another Cromwell Platoon in, and shot his Assault Guns with 3 Firefly shots from close range, blew up a bunch of his T-34's by combining fire from 2 Cromwell platoons shooting into his flanks, etc. We bailed out or destroyed all the Assault Guns, and then assaulted them with Infantry auto-killing them all. His T-34 Platoon was destroyed, his assault guns were destroyed, and our opponent conceded. It was a great game, and really felt like a battle. We struggled and struggled to turn his flank, our arty batteries were duking it out we came out on top with a vicious counter-attack from flanking reserves. It was a good Sunday. Dylan can correct any errors in my memory, but I think I got the gist of it.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Flames Photos

Ok, so here are some photos of my recent games and my assembled Tank Company. You will see that I'm missing one CS tank, and two Crusaders to bring myself up to the 1750 mark, and of course my AOP plane, my Recce Stuarts, and my 8 gun Arty battery. So still a ways to go actually. Still!

Friday, March 23, 2012

Cromwells... ASSEMBLE!

So, I just got done assembling 11 Cromwells, 1 Cromwell CS, and 3 Sherman Firefly VCs.


Getting the tanks ready to hit the table by throwing on the tracks is easy. Getting all the little 'fiddly bits' like the fenders, the hatches, the crew, the guns, etc. well... it takes some time.

I have to say I am a bit dissapointed by the quality of some of the stuff. The tracks don't have any really clear "line me up here" points, which is strange. Only one of the tanks is actually "screwed up" but, meh.

The fenders don't really want to go on straight, either.

All fixable/ignorable stuff, but it wasn't fantastic.

But at that scale, I can forgive a few sins. These are pretty darned small models.

I will try and take some photos before I prime them all.

And I need to get ahold of an entire 8 gun 25 pounder battery still... so lots to do.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Flames of War - British 7th Armoured vs German Infantry, Quick Recaps

So, I had some excellent learning opportunities provided to me by DylanGould.

I brought out my 1575 list, which is:

2 HQ Cromwells
3 Cromwells, Firefly VC
3 Cromwells, Firefly VC
3 Cromwells, Firefly VC
3 Recce Stuarts
8 x 25 Pound Artillery and the fixin's.
Aerial Observation Post (AoP)

I did take some photos, which I will try to post up at some point. Suffice to say I put my hand into the wood chipper on the first game, and on the second game I almost couldn't have lost because of the mission and his army, and I did in fact "win." Both games were great learning experiences with my army and taught me to respect Pioneers in a serious way. Seriously, these guys in buildings are just ridiculous.

I learned that my army is a hammer, but it's a small hammer which must be applied precisely onto a previously stressed and prepared position in order to win. It's not a "smash your enemy's army to bits" type of a hammer. And that's ok.

It also makes me want to try my hand at infantry. It's always a good sign when playing the game makes you want to try new things, get new armies, etc.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Flames of War: British 7th Armoured, Late War, 1575 Points

This is what I think I am going to work towards. I like the fact that the Cromwell is a “Light Tank” but really is a Sherman. The Cromwell (and Challenger) are a bit strange because their speed combines strangely with their special rule, semi-indirect fire (which requires them to be stationary and long range), but I suppose there will be some situations to stand still and shoot and some situations to use the speed to zip up and get flank shots… and still other situations when you use your speed to move into position to sit back and pound on things the next turn. *Shrug* time will tell.

Here’s the list. 1575 for an upcoming tournament.

Headquarters Platoon, Cromwell Tanks x 2

Armored Platoon, Cromwell Tanks x 3, Firefly VC x 1
Armored Platoon, Cromwell Tanks x 3, Firefly VC x 1
Armored Platoon, Cromwell Tanks x 3, Firefly VC x 1
Recce Patrol, Stuart Tanks x 3 (Reconnaissance)

Corps Field Battery, Royal Artillary, 8 x OQF 25 pound guns, tractors, 2 Sherman Observer tanks.
Aerial Observation Post

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

FoW - Late War British Armor


I finally bit the bullet. I just ordered a Cromwell Armored Platoon.

Comes with 4 Cromwells and Firefly VC.

I'm thinking the Turning Tide Armored Squadron is my best bet.

Building for 1575 because that's what the upcoming tournament is going to be played at.

Trying to decide whether Air Support is worthwhile in that list. Open to suggestions...

HQ 2 Cromwells
Combat 3 Cromwells, 1 Firefly VC
Combat 3 Cromwells, 1 Firefly VC
Combat 3 Cromwells, 1 Firefly VC
3 Recon Stuarts
2 OQF 25 Pounder

That leaves me 195 points. Thoughts? Suggestions on tactics? I'm assuming the best uses of the Fireflys will often be to leave them sitting and shooting with Semi-indirect fire while the Cromwells move forward...?

How to deal with dug-in infantry?