It’s funny who you get to play in big tournaments. I’ve been to several events and have never played Ryan before (who was famous/infamous for running Otto’s Tiger 1e’s very successfully). Top bloke and I’m glad to finally get a game in with him. As it was, my round three draw was Dust Up and I’d be taking on Ryan’s new focus – Bridge by Bridge SS (KG Arnheim), looking something like this:

HQ with schrek
SS-Aufklärungs Platoon
85. Grenadiers with schrek
SS Heavy with 2 MG42s
2 Königstigers (for a whopping 690 points!)
3 StuH42s
2 SS PaK40’s
Sporadic FW 190F

Ouch – from the get-go I knew this list would be trouble for my light tanks. I started with the guns, infantry and one Chaffee platoon on the table, with me recon, TD’s and the other M24s coming on from reserve. Ryan left his StuHs, Aufklärungs and MG42s in reserve. Fortunately for my, the KTs only rolled clever hands. Unfortunately for me, with Pak40s, schreks and KTs blocking the way, I was unlikely to hit Ryan’s objectives early on.

Onto deployment:


Ryan’s tough-nut-to-crack corner

Lucky for me the KTs bagged ‘clever hands’. Relief!


Ryan had air – ARV doin’ its baby-sitting thing…



PaK40s and Grenadiers. Plus the odd fasut/schrek. Looks like one safe objective to me!

Turn one


KTs on the move


The AOP ranges in, naturally I miss with the artillery.

Not much happens in turn one. Lots of hiding on my part – Ryan moves the KTs out aggressively..


2IC takes a pop shot. Needing a roll of a one to save the tiger, Ryan, naturally obliges.


In order (Red, Black, Red) – Hit, Save, Firepower!

At the end of turn two, killing one KT (and not dying in return) is the grand sum of our efforts thus far. Ryan starts turn three by bringing the StuHs on, right opposite objective held by the US Infantry…






The artillery had ranged in each time, but was yet to score a hit. The StuHs made them pay.


The KT Commander protects its flanks from my likely tank destroyer arrival


My first reserves – Chaffees move to outflank the KT…


While I send the CO and original Chaffee platoon after the StuHs. Such a threat cannot be ignored for long.


Ranged in, again. With two guns firing the outcome is predictable.


The Chaffees to their best impression of whiffle-ball; hitting the StuHs once! Ryan bounced it with ease, and then turned their guns towards the hapless M24s. Predictable carnage

Ryan really blew the game open here – although I kept the platoon alive (one tank was hiding, I forgot to move it!, and it passed the platoon check).


In response to Ryan’s domination on the left, I bring the TD’s on and go Tiger hunting


Cav Recon on as well. These boys zip up the road to annoy harass Ryan’s infantry in a turn or two.


Ryan’s KT moved to engage the flanking Chaffees, but copped an M10 round in return!


The SS arrive an assault the infantry – one bogging on the way in, of course!


Bounced! The Bazookas do their job. Forcing the assault back and nailing a few casualties in the process


Artillery ranges in on a new, priority target – and bags a StuH!


SS try their luck again – though pinned, the Bazookas do their job again!


SS taking a beating


Which leaves the job to the StuHs – who promptly annihilate my infantry. Game to Ryan!

To my right I had the Cav Recon, M10s and Chaffees desperately trying to clear the grenadiers – but I couldn’t get into assault range or bag the Panzerschrek. I did manage to kill the PaK40s, giving me a second platoon, and a 4-3 loss.

This turned out to be one of the most enjoyable games of the tournament. Ryan stated later that he probably should have assaulted with the StuHs, with their skirts and (relatively) better armour; can’t say I disagree, although I probably wouldn’t have assaulted at all, and just let those breakthrough guns do the talking! It was a great game to play – Ryan’s dice did most of the damage, either failing to save Chaffee shots, or bogging on the assaults – it certainly provided us with plenty of entertainment!


MOAB 2014 – The little Finnish engine that couldn’t

So with MOAB over, I thought it would be a good time to reflect on the weekend that was.

I ran the Panssarikomppania at MOAB.  Now I did go into the weekend knowing that it was not the strongest list going around but I wanted to try something different.



So in the end I finished the weekend 21/32 with 3 wins from 8 games, with some really close games, 3 of which came down to the final dice roll.  However, overall I wasn’t particularly happy with my result, however, I did learn a lot from the weekend and had a lot of fun.

So what are my takeaways from the weekend on the list:


The list

The Panssari list will definitely struggle to be a competitive tournament list.  It’s a tricky list to defend with when you have to defend.  On day 3 we played fighting withdrawal and Hasty assault and I had to defend both times.  It was very tricky trying to defend a long table edge with the list as there is just not enough stuff to go around.  Particularly when I had to defend against Adam’s lend lease tank horde (so many tanks) in fighting withdrawal.






So how did each of the individual units perform:


Against the 6 German lists I played they struggled every game.  Playing against king tigers, jagdtigers and panthers made it hard to use these guys, however, they were still able to get some flank shots at crucial times to knock out some big cats.  I also did try to assault infantry with these guys a few times, which didn’t pay off.


A tough day at the office


These guys did great.  They were able to manoeuvre where I wanted.  They got off tonnes of flank shots.  They got onto the objectives multiple times and overall proved to be a real nuisance to my opponents.  These guys were loads of fun to use.


Getting ready to storm the objective

Getting ready to storm the objective

Pak 40s

These guys really did work well in this list.  Next time i’d rather take a short Jaakari platoon over these guys, they just didn’t gel well with the list.

Jaakari platoon with Lauri Torni

These guys rocked, I wished I had taken a 2nd unit of them.  In the 1st game they accounted for 3 King tigers and a Panther.  They were great in assault and tough to shift in defence.

Lauri Torni single handedly taking down a King Tiger

Lauri Torni single handedly taking down a King Tiger


These guys were awesome.  They put out a lot of firepower for a recce unit and a times were able to take objectives by themselves.  1 of them also managed to knock out a Panther after getting into it’s flank.

armoured car ace!!!

armoured car ace!!!


Another awesome unit.  These guys continue to punch above their own weight on the weekend with their excellent firepower. They were great for digging out infantry and combined with the BA-10s where able to clear a dug in infantry platoon off and objective.


There was some infantry dug in here

76 K/02 artillery

These guys had 1 primary job, smoke, smoke and lots more smoke.  They were essential to the list.  In 2 games I had to attack a King Tiger company and these guys were essential in making it across the board.

Heavy Artillery

I’m really mixed on these guys.  They are essentially to the list as they are the only unit (over than air) that can knock out heavy tanks at range, however, they are a big investment for a tank company and they need to be protected.  However, with the amount of heavy tank companies I faced, they were essential in knocking out the big cats and providing smoke cover to get my tanks across the open.

Artillery set to cover the advance

Artillery set to cover the advance



All in all it was a fun weekend.  I learnt a lot from all my games.  I also got to meet Scott Elaurant, the author of the Finnish lists in grey wolf and get some really good 1st hand tips from him.  I’m looking forward to switching back to the Finnish infantry.  The next tournament coming up is MW and I’m looking to give the Jalkavaki a run.


Better the Devil You Know – MOAB Review

Well, MOAB is done and dusted, and I’ve now had just the 10 games with the Chaffees, using this list. The per-tournamnet practice matches didn’t show any real draw-backs or weaknesses. Eight tournament rounds later, and there was was too much this:


TD’s burning. Who saw that coming?

and way too much of this:


Ryan’s STuH42s make short work of my paper armour


Round 1. Lachlan was shooting ducks in a fish barrel.

Which was to be expected, I knew light armour wouldn’t win a stand-off, and I was aggressive (mostly) with this force to utilize my advantages; speed and stabilizes. The big thing missing? Not enough of this:




This last one was most satisfying…

I finished the tournament with a 3-5 Win Loss (with one 1-6 and one 6-1 – everything else was 4-3 or 3-4). So. The good, the bad and the ugly of my MOAB force.


The Good
How good are 15cm guns? Wonderful you say? Above-expectations-awesome. That’s how good. Sure, no Time on Target is a drawback, and hitting as trained artillery (and getting hit in return) meant I was actually missing more than I was hitting. But when these badboys hit. They hit hard.


Captured Gun Goodness

The 15cms took out a shopping list of opposing forces, KTs, enemy artillery, 88’s, infantry, and an ungodly amount of enemy armour. At one stage a Guards Recce player brought up a short platoon to threaten the objective my artillery was babysitting, only to be direct-fired into oblivion. The AOP was nice, more than nice actually, helping me pick priority targets and taking the pressure off the deployment of my observer (and allowing Audie Murphy to do other Audie things). I lost the AOP only once in the entire tournament, being particularly careful to avoid those pesky .50cal AA guns.

The next ‘good’ thing, Stabilisers. Wow. These things kept my Chaffees alive, allowing double shots of smoke rounds, or better yet, the statistically improbable ‘6 shots on 6s’:


Duly noted

I found the Stabilisers to be a fun addition to the list, and they blew my expectations away. I normally presume to miss with my dice rolling (as Sean will attest), so when the 5’s and 6’s popped up, I was a happy man.

50.cals and tanks with three MGs. That was particularly nice when I (finally) faced infantry companies – that volume of shots, and the 5+ FP in particular is sensational.

Firepower checks – somehow, for once, I nearly always got my 3+ to kill (or 2s with those incredible 15cm guns!) an enemy team. I’ll take that week in week out.

An honourable mention to the Never out of touch rule for the 2nd Cav company – re-rolling reserves got me more than I should have (including three successful ‘calls’ for reserves on the first available attempt).

The Bad
Front Armour 4. In a duel between Panzer IV (J)s and M24s, that one extra pip would have given me a slim hope of bouncing shots. It would have been even better against the Cromwells!

AT 10. I did bag a KT in the rear after Ryan obliged me by rolling a 1 to save his big cat. That, however, was the exception. Too often I saw either great armour saves (AT 10 vs SA 5!) or I just brought too little punch to the fight. The TD’s, while AT 13 (and claiming a pair of KTs themselves) were over worked and had to be used carefully to ensure their maximum effectiveness (like killing seven Soviet Shermans in one round of fire). That left me critically low of high powered anti-tank fire.

Motivation checks. Just. Sigh

The Ugly
Confident Infantry. I had expected the infantry to do an enormous amount of work, and they just… couldn’t cut the mustard


Three times I lost these guys to platoon motivation checks; each time taking my CO with me. They weren’t used recklessly either, an 11 team veteran platoon should have some staying power, but six kills and that was it. They failed countless tank terror and counterattack checks, and often remained pinned. I would love to take fearless troops given the chance. Hmm, Bridge at Remagen is starting to look tempting…

MOAB Photodump – Last Day!

Just a couple of shots this time – from the last two rounds of play. Big congrats to John for bagging first (two years in a row – like the Hawks!) and a special shout out to our very own Sean who came in fourth.



Fearless TO – many thank you Nigel, was a great event




What everyone wanted to see – Patton taking it on the chin. Manni rolled like a star and bounced the rockets!



Not a good weekend for IS-2s…


Sean’s beautiful KT and SS


Manni’s parking lot








Chaffees! This time in the hands of a decent player, the one and only GenghisBoB




Priority kill – the Guards Challenger


MOAB Photodump – Part 2

Photos from day two’s action – including shots from my round four and six nail bitters against fellow storm troopers! Unfortunately, either the I’m a terrible photographer (most likely) or the heat/rush/intensity got to me; most of my photos were blurry from today 🙁



Russian tank horde part A…


and part B…


So. Many. Tanks


Junior – deadset unlucky not to win this game


AOP + 15cm guns = 1 Dead KT!


Before the arty came in – showing how important that kill would be


Good mix of skills for the RV KTs!


Ruins of Italy


Try as I could, I just can’t bag this platoon from Manni.


M10’s Pop and are brutal on trained Soviets


Other Games


Bolt Action IS-2; beautiful model


Panzer dual! In FoW the IV H wouldn’t stand much chance front on against Stalin’s heavy. How so in Bolt Action?


Boom! The IS-2 goes up in flames!






Bolt Action awards. Nice


Who doesn’t love Star Wars?



Old school 40k. Ah, memories

MOAB Photodump Part 1

Photos from the action in Day, including my first and second rounds, where I was comprehensively beaten.











One of Ryan’s KTs. We’ll see more of these soon…







Choo Choo!!


Entire train


Scott opens up on the armoured train



+ infinity respect to Ben for bringing a train!


and Scott’s done a pretty good job…

























MOAB Preview

Less than 24hrs left for Australia’s Late War GT!
All three of us are making the trek (and in the same car, how’s that for risk management) down to MOAB and we’re all pretty pumped.

Pre-event thoughts? I’ve no idea what to expect, having never competed at a three day event previously. I’m pretty excited, as I’m sure the others will be too.

We’ll do our best to update our progress through the event, and post AARs where possible. I’ll try and get as many happy snaps of the other games and systems too.

As for the lists;

Sean is bringing this Bridge at Remagen SS, the basis of which he posted on Battlefront’s website.


Sean’s SS take a heavy toll with their panzerfausts

Mitch will be sticking to his guns and playing his well developed Panssarikomppania – a nasty force that I know will surprise more than a few opponents.


Mitch’s artillery – ouch!

And I’m sticking with the devil and packing US M24s. Should be fun!


Lets hope the Chaffee’s manage to kill their fair share of Tigers!


Devil’s in Action – Chaffees Game 2

I got a second (and most likely, final) chance to run the Chaffees pre-MOAB this weekend. Justin has been salivating over Bridge at Remagen heavy German tanks (and their associated dirt-cheapness) and we fought it out with Fighting Withdrawl.


This would be a good opportunity for the both of us; for Justin, the chance to see how four tanks defending (with removing platoons/objectives) was important pre-tournament. For me, well – I was desperate for the chance to run up against heavy armour (albeit… veterans in this case), especially in a scenario of always defends forcing me to come around the sides of the Kings to pop them, whilst minimizing casualties…

Justin was taking three King Tigers (two command tanks, one riding solo in a platoon), three panthers, two 10.5cm Artillery, panzerfaust-rifle grenadiers and sporadic Focke Wulf. My list would be the same MOAB-planned list.
We set up the table, and Justin picked his side to defend:


Justin’s left flank – panzerfaust grenadiers in a field


10.5s guarding the central objective


‘The Zoo’ – King Tigers and Panthers holding the right flank


Close up of the cats



My left flank – guarding against a potential tiger advance are one platoon of M24s, my trained TDs and the trained 15cm ‘captured’ guns


And on the right – the bulk of my force – 2nd infantry, command M24s (not in shot) and Cav Recon… on a road!


Pre game shot


and one of my side!


With Justin not having any recce – it was straight over to me. Cav recon didn’t make full use of their road advantage – but still look sweet!

Post recce move – (Audie decided to stay with his platoon) it was on for the first turn.


Turn one and the recce go hell for leather


With no ‘credible’ (famous last words) templates in Justin’s army, the right flank bunch up nice and tight


While the left flank ‘reorganizes’


The AOP ranges in on the Panthers but I fail to hit (having ranged in on the last attempt..) However the Chaffees make full use of their available ammunition and smoke the ROF 3 company command King


Pinned reluctant infantry – yay!

That was a quick first turn – my decoy worked; the TD’s lured both command tigers on the already heavily defended left flank. Utilizing their speed and small size, both the TDs and the Chaffees make a bee-line for the middle of the table. Realising the right objective is one assault away from being captured, Justin calls the Luftwaffe and…


No credible templates… oops

The FW (Stuka) swoops and and kills one stand – go infantry saves! Importantly, he’s potentially bought some extra time by pinning my confident troops.


First blood to Justin


German artillery tries to get a few more GIs with no luck


Game changing moment right here – the Kings and Panthers move out to engage me


Panthers don’t like being ranged in, apparently


With his left flank exposed and outnumbered, the platoon KT moves toward the far objective – popping some shots at the recce but failing to hit


The kings find the shooting rather tough, but bag a Chaffee nonetheless


Before the central KT storm troopers towards the left objective

Turn two and things start to heat up.


Audie and his boys unpin and head into the forest for an assault…


But its the M24s who make it in, losing one on the way in but forcing the Germans back


After shooting up one gun, the Cav Recon get ballsy and charge the remaining 10.5cm. The KT sees it off… with a re-roll of course!

Justin responds by moving the cats up… again!


Central KT moves to engage the assaulting Chaffees


While the command tigers go hunting the other platoon of M24s


Caught between a rock and a hard place, the Chaffees take another casualty.

I actually start turn 3 in possession of the central objective, thanks to these little guys (the KT had moved up field):


90 points of victory!

Winning the game 6-1 without even scratching the paint. Well, Justin’s paint anyway. Since neither of us got much out of a 5 turn game, we decided to push on, and I see how my little tanks can go against three hungry Kings.


Step one – flank shots. Who said AT10 was terrible? One bailed, reluctant KT…


The two remaining Chaffees get to work on the Panthers, repeating step one – flank shots for the win!. Now you see me…


… and now you don’t! Reluctant platoon check – ouch!


I go for all objectives, bail another Chaffee and push the Grenadiers away. They pass their reluctant platoon moral, ex SS guys perhaps?




The KTs attempt to avenge their fallen cats – bagging a Chaffee…


With the survivor promptly failing its motivation check. 1-1 on Platoons!


My infantry and Chaffees finish off the Grenadiers will I pop and move my TD’s to engage the KT


Despite four M10s and one stationary Chaffee hitting it – the KT shrugs everything off, before the 2IC at the rear scores a bail… one reluctant double bail check later… 3-1 on platoons!


After three turns of ranging in and being bounced, team 15cm-AOP score a direct hit, on the King of Kings, Command Tiger

Losing a third platoon – Justin starts his fourth turn under half strength, and promptly fails that check too.

What surprised me in this game, was how versatile this list is – everything, even the cheap recce, can contribute significantly. What didn’t surprise me, was how much effort it takes to crack a KT. 210 points for a 305point monster is a great trade (15cm guns) but that took five turns! The reality is, I got lucky with Justin being so aggressive. Had he played defensively as all good “always defends lists” can, I’d have been up for much more pain.



Northern Sydney Stormtroopers Club Session

A bunch of us got together for late MOAB practice the other night, including Adam all the way from the Shire (respect for that mate!). Here’s some of the action:


Yanks vs ‘Borrowed’ Yanks – Adam’s lendlease brings the pain


but has a sea of ‘regular’ Americans to combat!


So. Much. Tankovy.


SU100s – the only ‘native’ unit in Adam’s list


Alex takes on James


The Canadian ‘Arty-Park’


You can never have too many AFVs…


Gamers aren’t terribly fashionable – fortunately none of us were responsible for this crime against humanity


Yanks brace for an onslaught of MGs


While pegging a few of the Ruskies




James’ incerdible ability to roll terrible tiger ace skills…






The Spetz… bringers of victory (in their German Halftracks…)

Devil’s in Action – Chaffees Game 1

First game out with the little Chaffees that could and I’m up against cheatnadian Canadians, run by Australia’s (current) No.1 Ranked Canadian player, Alex.

Alex ran a Rifle Company from Market Garden; two platoons with Kangaroo APCs, a mixed Carrier Platoon (Wasps/Universal Carriers), an Armoured Recce Platoon with one Firefly, 4 M10 17pdrs and 8 25pdr (trained) guns. Ouch. The 25pdrs, with rof 2, AT9 and turntables could pose a massive threat to my paper tanks.

I went with my MOAB Chaffees. I know some people don’t like playing blue vs blue, but at a Grand Tournament like MOAB it’s almost inevitable. This would be a good test to see how I could deal with Veteran opponents (and those with excellent special rules to boot).

Alex rolled Free For All and I won the roll for attacker, picking the heavier forest side to protect my light tanks.


US left flank – rifles and captured guns


US middle – Chaffees, Recon, TD’s. The other M24 platoon is on the far right guarding the wheat field objective


Oh Canada… right flank, infantry, 25pdrs (Land Mattresses moonlighting in this game) and ‘real’ M10s.

Knowing the full potential of direct fire 25pdrs, Alex spread the artillery out between the two objectives. Meaning I’d need to hit the guns either way, to take the game.


Canadian left flank


Canada in the middle. Featuring Adam’s painted terrain

I left my right flank minimally defending on purpose; I was hoping to tempt Alex out of the forest with his firefly’s and mounted infantry to swarm my M24 platoon – who would in turn be supported by my other Chaffees and M10s. Alex didn’t take the bait (a rather expensive fishing trip!), so it was up to me to bring the game to him!


M24s, recce and TD security move out behind the forested cover



What a juicy target for the AOP to spot… the captured guns hit two M10s and bail one… not a great start for the artillery


Recce keeping their eyes open


Alex returned fire on my guns, ranging in and… missing. This would be a common theme


After remounting his M10, Alex moves them up, wasting the M24 platoon command and bailing another…


With Alex’s M10s in the open, I pop my TD ambush and waste the platoon. 3 kills, a double bail (Canada passes) and a failed platoon check. 1-0 at the second!


Chaffees move up to tempt Alex..


Carnage on turn 2!


In my haste to find a good ambush location for the TD’s, I failed to account for a) range and b) Semi-indirect Fire. Alex ignores the wheat field Chaffees and brews up the M10s – three kills, one bail (sound familiar?). I pass the motivation check to stay around, but get blasted on Alex’s next turn


‘Roos move out…


Canadian recce disengages as I go for cheap kills


With Alex ranged in on my guns, the AOP goes for the staff team, and a couple of Shermans…


The staff team save (pinning the arty) and the two Shermans bounce the AT5 rounds… this would also be a recurring theme! The SMG infantry dismount and move up to the objective, while my Chaffees knock the wasps out.


AOP switches to the infantry, bagging two stands


Got too close! The chaffees whiff their shots at the infantry, and cop a couple of Firefly rounds in return


Alex still ranged in…


… and misses my two (non-dug in) guns


I clear out the Recce and Wasps to go 3-1 up on platoons – looking to get Alex under, I move up to snipe the Firefly and the other Shermans at range. I kill two…



… but Alex passes motivation… again. This firefly fights on to brew up my wheatfield Chaffees and ice the other platoon. 3-3 at the death!


Arty update… Alex finally hits my two remaining guns, who fail their save and the platoon runs off, bringing me under half. I promptly fail my motivation, 4-3 Alex!

As with all of our games, Alex and I really gave each other a bloody nose. I failed to use my infantry in the game, and really need to get them into the mix. Chaffee speed was quite useful (expected) but their gun… proved better than expected. Having played most of my games with AT 14 or above, I was concerned at the comparatively weaker AT 10, but with stabilisers boosting the shot volume, the Chaffees had no problem picking up a few kills.

I’ll need to use the TD’s more successfully too – it was a waste just going after Alex’s M10s (especially when I could have ambushed them where they wouldn’t get seen) – but using these takes practice… exactly what this game was for!

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