Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Flames of War: Market Garden Tournament - Part One

Phoenix Games in Kitchener, Ontario, Canada is hosting a Flames of War tournament this Sunday (May 29, 2016). It will be my first tournament since August, when I won first place at The Game Chamber in London with a list from Desperate Measures. This upcoming tournament at Phoenix is themed in that they want you to pick lists from either Bridge by Bridge or Market Garden. There is no penalty for straying to other lists, but I will keep mine fitting the theme.

Like some others that may read this blog, I play multiple games and rule sets. Back in August, I played Flames of War almost exclusively. Now I play Bolt Action (mostly) and have been reading a whole host of Osprey Wargames books.  I have even played some DBA historical games. I hope that I keep the Flames of War rules straight for his tournament. Below is the army that I intended on taking to this tournament.  
Canadian Armoured Company
Confident Veteran, Canadian Armoured Sqaudron from Market Garden - 1420 points (Forces Of War)
CANADIAN ARMOURED SQUADRON 
  •   CONFIDENT  
  •   VETERAN  
TANK COMPANY
POINTS
1420
PLATOON QTY UNIT POINTS
HEADQUARTERS
Canadian Armoured Squadron HQ   p.149
2 1 Sherman V Sherman ARV
COMBAT PLATOONS
Canadian Armoured Platoon   p.149
3 1 Sherman V Firefly VC (late) with .50 cal AA MG
Canadian Armoured Platoon   p.149
3 1 Sherman V Firefly VC (late) with .50 cal AA MG
BRIGADE SUPPORT
Canadian Scout Platoon   p.158
3 2 1 Wasp PPP Carrier Universal Carrier with extra hull-mounted MG Universal Carrier with PIAT anti-tank projector
Rifle Platoon (Canadian)   p.165
1 1 1 6 3 Cmd SMG team PIAT team Light Mortar team SMG team Ram Kangaroo APC with .50 cal MG
Market Garden Book - British Late-War - Platoon Count: 5
I love the way that 15mm miniatures paint up. There is just something about the scale that makes it so easy to get good results. My company commanders are not done yet, but all the other Shermans turned out well.
The Infantry and their rides
Above is a picture of three RAM kangaroos with 50 cal machine guns added and the accompanying infantry.
As you can see from the pictures, I have not finished painting this army. Since the tournament is in a few days, I will not take this army. Instead, I will bring my Germans. For now, I will outline how I won my last game with the list above and share the list that I took to my last tournament. During my last game, I played against a well seasoned veteran who was playing an American Infantry List. He had multiple artillery platoons (I believe 8 heavy guns total) and plenty of infantry. He had a ton of antitank assets so it looked like it was going to be a tough battle for my forces. Despite a well matched opponent, I believe that it was in deployment that I won the game. My opponent placed almost all of his serious antitank assets on the left side of the board to counter the Shermans that I placed on that side. I then placed my Carreers in the centre (or slightly right of it) and my RAMs loaded up with infantry on the far right. My tanks pushed forward and kept the entire left side busy while my RAMs and Carriers veered to the right and went straight up the right flank. Because the antitank assets were placed to deal with my Shermans, my Carriers and Kangaroos had little fear of retaliation. That being said, my opponent started to mark my carrier platoons with time on target and there was a small pass where my vehicles got bottlenecked. For a while, it looked like my guys might not make it up the field. Through perseverance, my guys pushed up and claimed the objective.

At my last tournament, I took the following list... Confident Trained Panzer Kampfgruppe from Desperate Measures (Forces Of War)
PANZER KAMPFGRUPPE (TRAINED)AUGUST 2015 TOURNAMENT
  •   CONFIDENT  
  •   TRAINED  
TANK COMPANY
POINTS
1750
PLATOON QTY UNIT POINTS
HEADQUARTERS
Panzer Kampfgruppe HQ (Trained)   p.69
2 2 StuG IV Assault Rifle Tank Escort
COMBAT PLATOONS
Panzer Platoon (Trained)   p.70
4 Jagdpanther
Panzer Platoon (Trained)   p.70
4 StuG IV
WEAPONS PLATOONS
Panzer Anti-aircraft Gun Platoon (Trained)   p.71
4 Wirbelwind (Quad 2cm)
SUPPORT PLATOONS
Grenadier Kampfgruppe Platoon (Trained)   p.87
1 4 2 1 Cmd Panzerfaust Rifle/MG team Panzerfaust Rifle/MG team Weapons team Panzerschreck team
Artillery Battery (Trained)   p.89
1 1 3 4 1 Cmd SMG team Staff team 10.5cm leFH18/40 howitzer 3-ton truck Observer Rifle team
Luftwaffe Heavy Anti-aircraft Gun Platoon   p.93                  
RELUCTANT  TRAINED
Allied Platoon
1 1 Cmd SMG team 8.8cm FlaK36 anti-aircraft gun (8 crew)
Desperate Measures - German Late-War - Platoon Count: 6
The Tank Riders didn't help much in the tournament, but they did look pretty and soaked up some points. 

The 4 tank platoon of Jadgpanthers had a surprising amount of success. I know that many folks on the internet believe that Jadgpanthers are useless and over-costed, but in a meta dominated by heavy tanks, putting out 4 well-armoured antitank 16 shots a round is a great equalizer. There were a few tense moments where I knew that if they did not make their shots, that I would be toast the next round, but the dice Gods were good to me and I managed to win the tournament. 
Part 2 will focus on the list that I take to Sunday's tournament, how I perform and if I leave the tournament with any take-away lessons.

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