Club Night 15/05/17: FFT3, Once more into….

I had a game of FFT3 booked in for this week against Alex who hadn’t played for quite a while and was keen to get another game in. He told me that he would be bringing a Soviet Tank Regiment along so I figured why not take the survivors from the Lithuanian force from last weeks game and see how they did against the follow on force. Obvious really if you think about it and I was really keen to have a go with them as I had just painted them! We would be just using the vanilla rules this time round and wouldn’t be using any air assets.

My much reduced Battle Group consisted of the following:

  • Tank Coy:
    • 4 Chieftain mk.13
  • Armoured Inf Coy:
    • 3 Inf, 1 Weapons stands + 4 Stormer 20’s
  • Mech Inf Coy:
    • 3 Inf, 1 Weapons stands (dug in, no vehicles)
  • Cav Combat team 1:
    • Recon VBC-90, VAB-VCI + Inf stand dug in
  • Cav Combat team 2:
    • Recon VBC-90, VAB-VCI, Inf stand dug-in + VAB-Milan
  • VAB-Milan platoon
  • TOW platoon (1 ton LR transport)
  • 2 x SP 155mm batts (off table)
  • 2 x 5.5″ gun batts (off table)
  • 2 x 155mm batts (off table)

Not big in numbers but it definitely had some punch with the mix of 120mm & 90mm guns and Milan and TOW atgm. I probably wouldn’t be able to completely halt the oncoming tide of armour but I’d at least be able to exact a hefty toll on the attackers and maybe might be able to pull off another victory like last week.

Before we started Alex informed me that he had brought a BMP Regiment instead of a Tank Regiment so my morale went up immediately, I might just be able to deal with the onslaught after all! However he still had a massive superiority in Artillery and his force was still quite large:

  • Regtl base:
    • 2 Brdm-3
    • 2 Vasilek 81mmM
    • Recon Brdm-2 + BMP-R
  • Tank Btln:
    • 9 T-72
  • 3 Motor Rifle Btlns:
    • 9 Inf stands (3 with AT-7 atgm) + 9 BMP-1’s
  • Off table Artillery
    • SP 122mm Btln (4 batts)
    • 2 x SP 152mm Btlns (4 batts)
    • 2 x BM-21 MRLS batts (6 units each)

 

Vilnius 2nd battle
Lithuanian Deployment: Red – Tanks, Orange – Amd Inf, Lt Blue – Mech Inf, Purple – VAB/Milan, Pink – TOW & Violet – Cav teams.

So we got to it with Alex bringing on a MR Btln down the road and another over on the left, so exactly the same approach as the chaps last week. Alex had rolled up only one turn of pre-game barrage and it only suppressed one infantry stand which was lucky. I decided that I’d open up as soon as possible but waited for the road column to get past the farm before unleashing with a combination of TOW, 90mm gunfire and 20mm autocannon. I managed to take out a couple of platoons of BMP’s and suffer only suppression in return fire, the second round of firing having some effect too even with being supressed and the Soviets started to lose platoons. Alex shrugged this off though and stating that he was going to do it the Soviet way didn’t pause to return fire and continued to barrel up the road before turning right and heading for the wood.

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There was another Battalion of  BMP’s following along the road and these were tasked to take out the Cavalry that had been tackling their comrades in front and pretty soon massed ATGM fire and artillery strikes had caused the end of the plucky VAB and VBC-90 platoons but not before they had virtually destroyed the lead battalion with only 5 platoons making it to the safety of the wood. With the end of the Cavalry on the hill (which I had left in place for a move too long) I decided to withdraw the TOW platoon and they duly mounted up onto their 1-ton Land Rovers and started to pick their way slowly through the trees. Unfortunately for them they were caught by the advance of the vengeful BMP’s and we decided that they were captured. there was one last bit of action in this wood though as the dug-in infantry platoon took out another BMP before being forced to quit the field in the return fire.

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The action in the centre now paused for a bit as Alex consolidated his position in the wood by the road and brought his T-74 battalion forwards. On the flanks things got hotter, much hotter. Whilst the fight for the central position had been going on the BMP’s on the left had been advancing through the wood seeking out the Lithuanian forces and after clearing the trees Alex pushed them forwards to take post on the hill in front of the stream. This meant that they ran smack into the infantry company entrenched there. A quick and brutal close combat ensued with 3 BMP platoons soon knocked out whilst the infantry only lost their weapons platoon. Retribution was swift however with the surviving platoons of AIFV’s letting loose with their 73mm guns which forced all 3 Lithuanian platoons to fail QC checks clearing the way for the advance to continue.

Over on the right the survivors of the first Motor Rifle Battalion that had reached the wood were making their way out the other end when they ran into the second Cavalry combat team and the combination of close combat with the dug-in infantry, 90mm guns of the Armoured cars and MILAN fire soon saw them reduced to a solitary platoon which promptly failed their formation test and left the battle. With their work done the Cavalry team began to withdraw but suffered the loss of the VAB/Milan platoon when a retaliatory Soviet artillery barrage rained down on the hill hitting them as they withdrew. So all in all at this point I was quite happy with how things were going, I had suffered some casualties yes but I had taken out a whole battalion caused casualties on two others and still had my Chieftains uncommitted. Alex still had the numbers to finish the job though and so the fight moved into its final act.

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Whilst the quick flurry of action had been taking place on the flanks Alex had brought his tanks forwards and had sent them into the wood, I had taken them under fire with the VAB-Milan platoon posted at the end of the wooded ridge in the rear of my position and soon a couple of tanks were burning, however retaliation was swift and the huge weight of return 125mm fire soon saw the anti-tank unit to quit the field. Alex was busy debussing his infantry in the wood, he had failed to save any from all of the ones hit so far and wanted to use their AT-7’s against my tanks once he located them, and slowly moved to the edge of the wood. At the same time the battalion on the left had recovered from their fight on the hill and surged forward to the stream which was the queue for the Chieftains to open up. I decided to split the fire of each platoon to try and maximise the damage and hopefully cause a formation check, it nearly worked but one platoon somehow survived and the battalion was still in the fight.

With the Chieftains now located Alex bravely pushed his infantry out of the wood to the stream covered by the BMP’s and newly arrived T-72’s. The combined fire from the various ATGM, tank guns and a massive MRLS strike supressed the Chieftains who gamely returned fire resulting in more BMP’s bursting into flames but the writing was on the wall and when one of the Lithuanian tanks brewed up after the next massive onslaught of Soviet fire I decided that it was time to pull out and leave the field to the very much battered Soviets whilst I still had some forces left.

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It was a cracking game that really did go down to the wire, for the loss of 4 platoons KO’d, 1 captured and 5 that quit the field I had eliminated a battalion of BMP’s, totally gutted another and inflicted casualties on the remaining one and the tank battalion so very much of a Pyrrhic victory for the Soviets. Alex was a great opponent and enjoyed the battle too and I look forward to playing him again. Next week will see some more FFT action as I try and get an even better handle on the rules and this time it will be the turn of the Poles to have a crack at the Lithuanians who are now firm favourites of mine.

 

 

 

Club Night 08/05/2017: FFT3, Vilnius or Bust!

I have been busily painting up a couple of new forces for my Modern FFT3 project, concentrating on the Alt-History Lithuanians and the first part of the Soviet forces. As I had volunteered to get a game on and they were ready to go it meant that it was a no brainer that they met on the table.

The scenario was a simple one, a Motor Rifle Battalion reinforced by 2 Regimental Tank battalions and the Divisional Tank battalion was tasked with breaking through to Vilnius. The remainder of the Division was busy taking on the 3 Lithuanian Infantry Brigades whilst this force had slipped through and was launched at the capital. Unfortunately the Lithuanian Armoured Brigade had been deployed to prevent this happening. The Soviets would have a near 3-1 advantage in tanks and artillery but the Lithuanians had managed to throw up hasty defensive positions and lay a quick minefield to help boost their efforts, they also had 2 dug-in tank turret positions for the enemy to worry about. The Lithuanians were of better quality too, being rated Regular (QC4) vs the Soviet Conscript (QC 5). The Soviets were commanded by Dan and Daren, the Lithuanians by Phillip. Unfortunately due to having to umpire I didn’t get any time to take photo’s during the game so only have a few but here is the battlefield from the Soviet perspective (the dark squares on the 2 round hills are the dug-in Conqueror turrets):

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I had allowed the Soviets pre-planned barrages for the first 2 turns which meant that they didn’t have to roll for the availability of their guns but were limited to 3 out of the 4 fire units available to each battalion. They used these to hit the 2 dug in Conqueror turret positions with a 152mm battalion shoot each whilst the 122mm battalion hit the front of the left hand wood behind the fields. Both turrets were supressed as was an infantry platoon in the treeline. Dan brought the first of his units on in a manoeuvre straight out of ‘Comrade Noakesavitch’s Instructions to Armoured Troops’: Belt some tanks straight up the road and see what happens, plenty more where they came from! So the ‘spare’ Regimental Tank Battalion was duly dispatched for this reconnaissance of death duty. Elsewhere, over on the left, Daren brought on the Recce company (one BMP-R and one BRDM-2 platoons) and headed for the wood just targeted in the barrage.

Vilnius defence
Lithuanian defence in depth. Lt Blue are Inf (‘M’ Platoon positions are Milan), Pink is Amd Cav, Red is Armd (coy on ridge at back is Mech infantry). Brown bit is the minefield.

 

The Soviets then piled more units on, the Divisional Tank battalion entering along the road whilst the other Regimental Tank battalion entered behind the recce company along with the BTR-70 battalion in a scary looking phalanx of Communist might. Their pre-planned barrages continued to hit the turret emplacements on the hills, knocking one out, and re-arranged some more of the lovely Lithuanian forest. However, no Lithuanian troops had revealed themselves yet although their artillery had supressed a T-72 platoon on the road. Phillip then gained the initiative off of the Soviets and, bagging himself 3 command pips, he duly called in a strike from his air support. This saw a plucky flight of Jaguars brave the Soviet air superiority and head straight for the mass of armour arrayed along the road. Unfortunately for Dan, he his AA assets were stuck at the back of the traffic jam and couldn’t prevent the attack from hitting home. When the dust had settled 2 T-72 platoons had to retire (failed QC checks) and another was supressed. One of the Lithuanian VAB/Milan vehicles also opened up on Daren’s attacking horde and ko’d the BMP-R from the recce company whilst an artillery strike supressed a couple of BTR-70 platoons and the BRDM-3 AT platoon. It was quickly dispatched by one of the supporting T-72’s though.

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This suppression had a massive effect on the rest of the game as Daren consistently failed to roll high enough to clear the suppression and move the Motor Rifle Battalion more than half speed for the rest of the game – even when Daren spent one of their command pips he failed, a terrible sequence of 1’s and 2’s – which basically stymied his advance and the action here was limited to the BRDM -2 nosing close to the wood and shooting up an infantry platoon so bad that it retired (QC fail). The brave Recce chaps inside then spent the rest of the game calling in artillery fire on the wood that eventually caused another Lithuanian platoon to fail a QC roll and the survivors to retire back to their waiting VAB’s and start to bug out.

So the action was all over on the other side of the table and along the road in the centre. Dan was also finding it difficult to unsupress the survivors of the Div. Tank battalion and also get them moving again as they recovered from the air strike so swung the huge 5 company Battalion of T-72’s with their attached ZSU-23/4 and Engineer company off to the right aiming towards the hill with the now kaput Conqueror turret on. This manoeuvre was carried out well and shrugged off attempts to disrupt it from the Lithuanian artillery, which Phillip was having trouble calling in now, until all of a sudden the unmistakeable crack of tank guns were heard. One of the Lithuanian Chieftain companies stationed along the stream opened up and had caught the Soviets in the flank too and soon a few platoons of T-72’s were burning. The Lithuanian’s also opened up with their TOW launcher but this was not as successful, only causing one suppression I believe. Dan reacted bravely to this new threat, taking the Chieftains under fire with half the battalion whilst surging forwards with the survivors of the other half to gain the hill.

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The return fire did well enough, causing a suppression, and the attention of nearly all of the supporting MRLS artillery supressed another platoon and caused one to quit the field. The arrival of a Hind really began to tip the balance though as it sat at the back of the battlefield immune from Lithuanian AA fire and started to pick off the Chieftains with long range ATGM fire. Meanwhile though the Chieftains were knocking out T-72’s so it was imperative that the companies of tanks heading for the hill got there quickly to help out. Unfortunately for them they ran smack into a dug in Infantry Company at the base of the hill, which saw some bloody close combat. This fight actually went a lot better that it could have done for the Soviets, admittedly they lost a few platoons but they did succeed in punching through and caused the Lithuanians to fail a formation check – probably due to the survivors watching the ZSU take out a platoon with ground fire. The T-72’s duelling with the Chieftain company had closed the range, bravely driving through a minefield to do so without a scratch on them, and with the help of the Hind had finally eliminated the last of the brave Lithuanian tankers.

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In the meantime Dan had finally got the stuck remnants of the Divisional Tank Btln sorted out and the leapt off down the road whereupon they were duly ambushed by some Lithuanian Recce types hiding in the wood by the road junction, this resulted in another platoon gone and one more supressed. Phillip now started to move his second Chieftain company from its position on the right by the stream over to engage the T-72’s of Dan’s battered command. With time running out we decided that the Soviets had shot their bolt and would have to retire to re-organise before trying again as Dan’s units were all close to triggering formation checks which, given their QC rating of 5 might be tricky to pass and Daren’s were effectively out of the fight. Daren’s awful luck activating his chaps had a large bearing on the outcome we felt (as all the troops on the table were newly painted one lot had to have rotten luck as is the first law of wargaming) and we believe that the commander of his MR battalion was called to a ‘meeting’ with the Regimental Commander and the Commissar. Philip had lost half of his tanks and nearly half of his infantry but had held on just, medals all round, especially for the Jag pilot as we all enjoyed seeing one on the table!

Hopefully the game went alright for the chaps involved, and I’d like to thank them for taking part and putting up with my sometime befuddled handling of things – it’s been a while since I played the rules and I did make a few mistakes! I will be tweaking the activation rules a touch to try and prevent what happened to Daren’s force happening again. I’m hoping to put on a big FFT game at the end of the month so this helped an awful lot in planning for that. Cheers gents!

 

 

 

 

 

Polish Army

As I’ve done for the Lithuanians here is the full OOB for my Alt-History Poles. It is taken from the IISS’ 1994 Military Balance, the Army is as is but I’ve had to change the Air Force OOB as at this time it was still very ‘Warsaw Pacty’ with a large number of aircraft organised into regiments. To get the new one I combined the Polish Air Force of today with the Nigerian Air Force of 1994 (as Nigeria was the basis of the equipment mix for the Poles). To change equipment from the Soviet kit to Western kit I just looked up the Soviet type on Wikipedia, looked at the ‘See also’ section and picked a type from there, all very clever and scientific! The Border guard OOB came from the pre-WW2 force.

 

Army

  •    4 Corp Hqs 
  •    10 Mech Divs (1 Reserve)
  •    1 Armd Cav Div
  •    1 Marine Bgde
  •    1 Armd Bgde
  •    1 Mech Regt (Pres. Guard)
  •    1 Mntn Bgde
  •    1 Air Asslt Bgde
  •    1 Inf Btln (SF)
  •    4 SSM Rgts    (10 launchers each)
  •    4 Attack Heli Btlns (5 Pzl.w4 Mangusta, 2 Pzl.2)
  •    4 Tactical Heli Sqdns (7 Pzl.w3 Sokol, 2 Pzl.2)
  •    1 ADA Bgd
  •    10 SAM Rgts

 

Border Guard

  •    6 Bgdes (6 Inf Btlns, 3 Cav Coys, Art Batt, Eng Coy)
  •    1 Mobile Grp (2 Inf Btlns, 3 Cav Coys, 2 Art batts)

 

Air Force  (aircraft numbers in game terms)

  •      2 GA Sqdns               @         9 Jaguar
  •      2 Ftr Sqdns                @         6 Mirage III
  •      5 FGA Sqdns             @         8 F-16
  •      1 Recon Sqdn            @         6 Mirage III
  •      1 LtGA Sqdn             @         6 Alpha Jet
  •      2 Trg/LGA Sqdns    @         6 L-39
  •      1 Utility Sqdn           @         6 A-109
  •      2 Lift Sqdns               @         8 Super Puma
  •      2 Lift Sqdns               @         6 Super Frelon
  •      2 Lt Trans Sqdns       @        10 Pzl M-28
  •      1 Trans Sqdn             @         9 G.222 Transport
  •      1 Trans Sqdn             @         4 C-130 Hercules Transport
  •      14 SAM base @ 4 Roland-1

 

I will post TO&E’s of the rest of the Army formations in another post but you can find the one for the Mechanised Divisions here: https://tracksandthreads.wordpress.com/2015/09/25/polish-mechanised-division/

 

Lithuanian Army

This is the second of my Modern Alt- History forces. I have decided that I would use the TO&E’s of the smaller Gulf States for the Baltic States as they seemed a good fit, being small divisional sized units and with a nice mix of kit that could feasibly be used by the Baltics. The actual size of each army has been altered slightly as I have taken the pre-WW2 forces OOB as a guide, turning infantry regiments into battalions for example and hence some slight changes might be made. As always I’ll be using Mark Bevis’ great lists available from the Wargames Vault for the lower level organisation. The air forces are taken from the Gulf State that is used as the ‘inspiration’. I chose Oman for Lithuania solely by dint that it had the largest population of the three (the others being Bahrain and Qatar).

 

Lithuanian Armed Forces

Ground

  • 1 Armd Bgde
  • 3 Motor Bgds
  • 1 Abne btln
  • 21 National Guard Battalions
  • 1 Engineer Btln
  • 2 Artillery Btlns
  • 1 Air Defence Regiment

Army Aviation (aircraft listed in game terms 1 = 2 actual aircraft)

  • 2 Lift sqdns @ 7 AB-205/212/214
  • 1 Scout Flt @ 1 AB-206

Air Force

  •  2 GA Sqdns   @ 7 Jaguar, 1 Recon Jaguar
  •  1 FGA Sqdn @ 4 Hunter
  •  1 LtGA Sqdn @ 4 Hawk
  •  1 Trg/LtGA Sqdn @ 6 L-39 Albatros
  • 1 Transport Sqdn @ 4 Skyvan 3M & 1 C-130H

 

TO&E’s (FFT3 so one base = platoon)

Armoured Bgde                                                         

  •  1 Cmnd Sultan/Land Rover
  •   1 VAb 6×6 VDA sp tw20mm adg

Cavalry Sqdn

  • 2 VBC-90
  • 2 Recce Inf (3 ar, lmg, law-80)
  • 2 VAB-VCI 6×6
  • 1 VAB 6×6/Milan-1

SP Art Btln

  • 1 Landrover FOO
  • 2 m109a2 sp155mm

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Armoured Btln

  • 1 Cmnd Sultan
  • 2 Tank Coys
    • 4 Chieftain mk 15
  • 1 Inf Coy
    • 1 weapons (2 60mmM, 2 MMG)
    • 3 Inf (3 ar, Lmg, 40mm gl, law-80)
    • 1 Stormer-12.7 apc
    • 3 Stormer-20 AIFV

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Mech Inf Btln

  • HQ Coy
    • 1 Cmnd VAB
    • 1 Blowpipe team
    • 1 81mmM
    • 1 Combat Eng (3 ar, lmg, law-80)
    • 2 1ton LR
    • 1 Recce LR/mg
    • 1 LR/ITOW
    • 2 VAB/Milan-1
  • 3 Inf Coys
    • 1 Weapons (2 mmg, 2 60mmM)
    • 3 Inf (3 at, Lmg, 40mm gl, law-80)
    • 4 VAB

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Not a terrifying force by any means but the Chieftains, picked up from the Brits ‘cheap’ thanks to them introducing the Challenger, are not to be sniffed at. As the Army is a purely defensive force anyway it suffices as a mobile reserve unit. It could also have the Scorpion equipped Armoured Cavalry battalion attached but that is usually split between the 3 Infantry Brigades.

 

3 x Infantry Brigades                                                  

  • 1 1 ton LR/Landrover
  • 1 tw 20mm adg
  • 1 1ton LR

Armoured Cavalry Sqdn

  • 3 Scorpion

Recce Coy

  • 4 Recce inf (3 ar, law-80, lmg)
  • 4 LR/MG

Art Btln

  • FOO Landrover
  • 3 105mm Lt Guns
  • 3 1 ton LR

Mortar Btln

  • FOO Landrover
  • 3 120mmM
  • 3 1ton LR

3 x Infantry Btlns                    

  • HQ Coy
    • 1 Cmnd 1ton LR
    • 1 Blowpipe team
    • 1 81mmM
    • 1 Combat Eng (3 ar, lmg, law-80)
    • 2 Milan-1
    • 4 1ton LR
    • 1 Recce LR/mg
    • 1 LR/ITOW
  • 3 coys
    • 1 Weapons (2 mmg, 2 60mmM)
    • 3 Inf (3 ar. Lmg, 40mm gl, law-80)
    • 4 1 ton LR                            

The Infantry Brigades are purely defensive formations and are augmented by the following National Guard Battalions which may be attached as and when needed or left to defend their mobilization locations.

21 x NG Btlns                            

  • HQ Coy
    • Cmnd Iltis Jeep
    • 2 Blowpipe teams
    • 1 81mmM
    • 2 MMG
    • 1 Eng (3 ar, lmg)
    • 4 Trucks
    • 1 Scouts (4 ar/smg)
    • 1 Landrover LWB
  • 4 Coys
    • 3 NG (4 ar, 3 lmg, 40mm gl, c gustav)

And under Army HQ command there are the following units:

Abne Btln                                                                  

  • HQ Coy
    • 1 cmnd (4 ar/smg, law-80)
    • 1 81mmM
    • 1 LR
    • 2 recce landrover/hmg
  • 3 coys
    • 1 para weapoms (3 60mmM, 3 Carl Gustav)
    • 3 para (4 ar, lmg, 40mm gl, law-80, 2 snipers)

If deployed on land will use Trucks as transport

Eng Btln                                                                    

  • HQ Coy
    • 1 cmnd LR/mg
    • 1 Carl Gustav team
    • 1 recce LR/mg
    • 1 CEV
    • 1 Chieftan AVLB
  • 3 coys
    • 3 eng (4 ar, 3 lmg)
    • 3 1ton LR

Army Art Btln

  • FOO LandRover
  • 2 5.5’ Gun
  • 2 Trucks

Army Art Btln

  • FOO LandRover
  • 2 155mm fh-70
  • 2 Trucks                   

Army AD Regt

  • 3 40mm adg
  • 7 Rapier
  • 10 Trucks

 

I’ll be posting some photos as soon as the bases are finished (next day or so for the Armoured Brigade).

Club Night 06/03/17: FFT3 bash.

As Dan and I found ourselves sans game last week, we decided to have another of our 6mm FFT3 ‘get some tanks on the table and have fun’ games. So My trusty Alt-history Poles and Austrians once more were about to engage in another round of battle. As usual we just whacked some terrain down, diced for what table edge we’d start on and got to it, simple meeting engagement with nominal objective of finding enemy and securing road network.

We each had a roughly same sized force with roughly equal number of tank bases, Dan had a slight advantage in infantry but I had the advantage of having a AT Heli which he didn’t, we both had aircraft support too.

We were using my house rules for activation, initiative and suppression with a slight twist, this time as an experiment we would be saving any unused pips from the initiative rolls and we only used a single d6 for testing for activation.

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Dan won the first initiative with a whopping 5 pips and wisely allowed me to move first and straight away the saving of the pips came into the game with Dan banking those pips for his next go. This has been an idea for a while as it seems a shame that you lose pips sometime, you might not have a chance to use them (first move being a good example) so why not save them up for later. I duly barrelled my Armoured car company down the road towards the far town and splitting my force into two halves advanced towards the stream on the left and to the ridge on the right. Dan’s first move was similar and things looked good for a nice even fight on both halves of the board.

First blood went to Dan as his Jeep/RCL recce chaps took out one of my AML’s then a couple of more were lost to deadly fire from M-60’s on the hill to the left. There wasn’t much other action during the first part of the game as the rolling hills made LOS hard to get shots off so we both jockeyed for position. Over on the right we had both halted on ridgelines overlooking the farmland and we tried to take the other under fire with me having the best of it as Dan’s Kurassier’s were just out of range and couldn’t reach my ridge, so my Vickers mk3’s and Striker attempted to pick them off – although my gunner’s sights were off a bit (Dan kept making the saving throws). Keeping one tank company on the ridge along with my Striker platoon to take on the SK’s I moved the other Vickers company and the infantry company behind the ridge towards the wood on the extreme right flank with an idea of using it to launch an attack from later, although I did suffer the loss of an infantry platoon by stupidly driving along the edge of the wood and straying into long range of the covering tank destroyers.

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Dan was initially having the best of it rolling for initiative and was using his pips to activate his artillery battalion each turn, which was doing a good job of supressing the tanks on the right hand ridge and the infantry by the stream on the left. My artillery support was woeful all night, with me only managing to call some in once or twice, the Austrian Electronic warfare chaps must have been playing a blinder, jamming my comms. My rolling was not any better when I finally secured the initiative and blew all my pips in attempting to call in an airstrike on the SK105’s, failing miserably and having the mission aborted.

Over on the left I managed to hit the stream without losing any vehicles from Dan’s good position on the ridge across the valley and de-bussed the infantry whilst one tank company started to probe along the streamline towards the village hoping to utilise the cover from the stream. Dan countered this threat by advancing an infantry and tank force towards the village which was very successful, my tank company was reduced to one surviving platoon hiding behind the village. Along the stream the action developed into a bit of a stand off as Dan didn’t want to move off of his ridge and I didn’t want to leave the cover of the stream so we both started trading shots but our respective terrain advantages prevented any knock outs taking place.

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I did keep the initiative from then on but usually only with a draw on the dice, using the odd point I did get for another activation which helped my advance off the right hand ridge, after I had finally seen off the covering SK105 company. This company moved forwards along with the company from the wood and engaged Dan’s units that had advanced against my probe along the stream, destroying or seeing off the tank company. My infantry positioned along the stream had used their APC’s 20mm to take revenge on the recce Jeeps, although they and their tank support had started to be whittled down by accurate Austrian artillery and direct tank fire and pretty soon there was nowt left after the surviving platoons bugged out due to formation tests although they did manage to take out one of the Austrian tank companies. This is where we had to stop due to time getting on, and the battle had begun to pivot around the central village, I had the upper hand on the right slightly whilst Dan had easily won the battle on the left so I conceded to a losing draw as I think I’d have pulled back if possible, Dan’s stronger infantry and their deadly BILL atgm might have tipped the balance.

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All in all it was a nice little fight, just about right for a quickly organised Monday night game. Dan was a cracking opponent as usual, not only sporting but a good laugh too. He liked the house rules, which was nice, as he said it added enough to the standard game without slowing it down and we both agreed that being able to save the pips was a positive change – Dan didn’t hold the initiative that much but his first two rolls were so good he managed to eke out his pips over many moves which helped in keeping his artillery going. I do really need to start painting some of my other 6mm kit to get another force together, will go Soviet next I think…

 

Club Night 25/07/16: FFT3 Bash

Last night was the ‘end of term’ for the Warlords as we have our summer break until September and it was planned that we would be taking part in a 6mm WW2 game. Unfortunately something came up which meant that the game had to get called off and as Dan and I were keen to get a game in we decided to just have a nice and simple straight up FFT3 scrap so I cobbled a couple of forces together. Dan took command of my alt-history Poles and I took the Austrians and we had the following forces:

Poles:

2 x Armoured Btlns of:

  • 3 x Vickers mk.3 Coys (3 each)
  • 1 x Inf Coy (3 Inf – 1 with Bantam atgm & 3 4k 4FA/20mm)
  • 1 sp 81mm mortar
  • 1 Striker

1 recce Btln

  • 2 x Scorpion-90 Coys (3 each)
  • 1 x Inf coy (as above but mg armed APC)

Bgde support

  • 1 x 155mm SP Btln (3 units)
  • 1 AD unit of 1 x Spartan apc with 2 x Blowpipe teams
  • 1 Mangusta Heli with 4 x ZT-3 atgm

 

Austrians:

2 x Panzer KampfGruppe

  • 2 x Coys M60a3 (4 each)
  • 1 x PzrGren coy (4 inf – 1 with Bill atgm & 3 mg 4k 4fa, 1 20mm armed)
  • 1 x M42 Duster sp adg
  • 1 x sp 81mmMortar
  • 1 x ‘command’ M60a3 (no special function just there to boost numbers!)

1 Recce Gruppe

  • 1 x Jeep Coy (2 jeep/hmg)
  • 1 x PzrJager Coy (3  SK105)
  • 1 x PzGren Coy (as above)

Bgde Support

  • 1 x sp 155mm Btln (3 units)
  • 1 Drakken with Bombs

So the forces were nice and balanced with me having a slight advantage in infantry with better ATGM and Dan having slightly more stands but more lightly armoured. I set the terrain up and we got to it with both entering the table from opposite ends with a nominal objective of securing the road junction. We did the usual and diced to see which sides we would come on from and we ended up going along the long axis, which completely negated the ridges and hills on the table as they were all orientated the other way so there was a lack of hull down positions which increased the lethality of the battle somewhat. We were keeping it simple hence the lack of Divisional and higher artillery and played without my activation rules but were trying out the suppression check rules to see how they panned out. Also we agreed that any time we scored 3 or more higher in the initiative roll we could bring on the chopper or jets to add a bit of fun!

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Dan’s lads entered from the far end.

Dan won the initiative for the first move, and also could’ve called in his chopper which he decided against, barrelling his units along the table using strat moves for everything which I did also when it was my turn – this was not going to be anything fancy this engagement!

Dan won the initiative again and carried on pushing one Armoured Btln to the wood by the crossroads with his Recce unit and a couple of tank companies secured the centre and his other Armoured Btln moving towards the village on the right. I  was slightly mirroring his moves pushing my Recce unit along the road to take the crossroads village whilst my Tank Btlns moved up the flanks, I did stop my Dusters on the small hills to my rear and put them on overwatch.

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My right hand attack moves off
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Recce types motor for the village

This ended up being a good decision as Dan again won initiative once more and again was able to call up his helicopter support, which he duly did moving it behind the large wood on the left. This wood was now seemingly full with troops and a Scorpion, Vickers and Infantry Company all snuck to the edge and made ready to fire. Over on the other flank his other Btln seemed to be all trying to hide behind the village with some tanks giving long range cover whilst the central units were held back in reserve. As I was now in long range Dan opened up starting the ball rolling by declaring a pop-up attack by his Mangusta, luckily for me my Duster crews on this side of the battlefield were both alert and lucky managing to down the chopper before it could unleash its missiles! My happiness was short lived however as Dan opened up from the wood and a combination of 105mm and 90mm guns and venerable Bantam missiles saw my lead tank company disappear from the table after failing QC tests.

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I decided to halt, debus the infantry and try to win the firefight with my remaining tanks whilst calling for artillery n the wood, which caused some suppression. My return fire also did some damage. I also managed to garrison the crossroads village and the Bantam team started to fire across to targets near the other village causing damage. On the right I advanced slightly to acquire targets near the right hand village and unleashed a particularly deadly fire which virtually wiped out Dan’s tanks on this flank.

Things then got very bloody as we had at each other for the next couple of moves, Dan wiped out my SK-105’s without them managing to fire a shot and as the action developed we both stared to take hits all over the place with companies failing QC’s and platoons going up. We decided to allow the chopper back on (and I was likewise allowed to ‘Unleash the Drakken!’ when I next won the initiative) and the Mangusta got to work straight away taking out 2 platoons of my victorious M60’s on the right which also fell victim to ATGM fire from the village and some deadly tank gunnery from the reserve Vickers Mk.3’s that Dan had moved across from the centre. The result of which was that my seemingly winning action on the right was crushed with me only having one surviving tank platoon and the infantry that I had placed in the wood also taking a beating from the attention of the Scorpion-90’s.

Luckily I won the initiative and got my jet on which managed to make a bomb run which sadly only caused the suppression of one platoon due to dodging the incoming Blowpipes. Sadly though I had taken appalling losses in tanks, I had none left having lost 2 companies worth to QC tests alone! i was now completely relying on my Infantry and these had had it as well when Dan’s last go saw his Artillery and Direct fire from every vehicle that could get a shot away started to whittle down the lads in the crossroads village too. I then had no other option but to concede defeat.

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Not the most brilliantly tactically nuanced battle ever fought but we had a laugh and Dan enjoyed the rules, it was only the second time he has played them so I’m glad of that and at least we got our gaming fix in before the break!