German tanks for the win!
Hey, long time no see :)
Today I thought it would be nice to share with you my idea of a LW 1420 list that I would like to play during an upcoming tournament in Poznań. Recently, there has been a lot of talk regarding how playing Germans is an uphill struggle and of course my spirit of perverseness kicked in whispering to me that I should demonstrate that not all is lost to the defenders of the Vaterland. And what is more, I should do it with tanks (no Always Defend Tigers)!
Following up on that idea, I started digging :)
There are 2 things that I discovered in the process:
1. An overall thing about German tournament tanks is that it is extremely difficult to build a true all-comers list. The reason for this is that every time I build a list I like, it turns out to be 6 platoons strong (normally, majority of platoons are tank teams). The problem is: what do I do if I get to defend in a battle with the Mobile Reserves rule? I can either put the nebs + maybe a Gepanzerte platoon with 1 platoon of tanks on the table or just 2 tank platoons. This means that my force is very vulnerable until my reserves arrive. No-go in my opinion. I can also try and mitigate that risk by using an always attacking list like tank companies from Devil's Charge, Panzers to the Meuse or Nachtjager. But then, I am faced with a force that is not so strong against infantry companies (not enough tanks in most cases).
2. Many other nationalities have it so much easier! :)
- US get quite a lot of briefings with Always Attack tank/mech companies with a very good selection of support options and helpful rules
- Hungarians get their assault gun battery, which is a good choice against pretty much everyone else, especially at low points
- Soviets cover up their weaknesses by either heavy tank choices or artillery support (think 120+160mm mortars in one list)
- British who are not attacking with their tank companies have it even better, because of their semi-indirect fire rules
All these things considered, I came to the conclusion that whatever I will build, the list will not fit to my high standards. But I had to decide anyway (still need some time to collect and paint the missing models).
While going through numerous briefings, one caught my special attention: HG Assault Gun Battery from FoW Digital. Normally, people tend to avoid playing HG tanks as they are almost exact copies of regular Panzer companies with the Guards tax added on top. At first, this seemed to be the case with HG Assault Guns. With further investigation though, it turned out that this list could have at least some potential.
There several reasons for this:
- StuH assault guns are one of the compulsory platoons
- all StuG and StuH platoons can be fitted with up to 4 tanks
- Company HQ can include up to 2 tanks, instead of the normal 1
- StuGs are late version models, equipped with an extra co-axial MG, which helps agains infantry in the open
- the company can employ very good recon units
- obviously Nebelwerfers are also an option
One extra strenght of the company is the Warrior who can join it: Hans Sandrock. This guy is just awesome! For 160 points he is a Cofident Veteran Higher Command team in a StuG (late) assault gun. His skillset is pretty impressive:
- he ignores +1 penalty to hit at long ranges
- when he closes in to under 16", he can hit side armor of tanks even though he is shooting them from the front (on a 4+ or automatically if there is a choice between turret/hull)
- and most notably, he makes one platoon he joins use cautious movement
Overall, he is something between a heavy hitter and a force multiplier. A must have, if you ask me :)
WIth all these options on the table, I decided to build my HG Assault Gun company version 1:
HQ: Sandrock + 2 HQ StuG (late) assault guns + recovery vehicle
CP: 4x StuG (late)
CP: 4x StuH
SP: 1x SdKfz 234/1 + 1x Pakpuma
SP: 1x SdKfz 234/1 + 1x Pakpuma
A very straightforward and quick to play list when I think about it. When designing it, I knew it could take on pretty much anyone. The only obstacle I could see was defending in Counterattack. This is why I decided to defend without recce support (although the recovery transport can be of some limited use here) but to have the main force in the form of 11 assault guns, including the Warrior on the table.
I hope to be able to use this list to effect next month. We will see how my concept works :)