Wednesday, 18 October 2017

Operation Goulash - British Tanks Engage Facist Sympathisers!

My second game of Operation Goulash seem the lead elements of British armour going up against elements of the Arrow Cross.

At a 1000pts my Armoured Reconnaissance company was stretched thin across two objectives, and heavily outnumbered.

Fascists advance on the left and right - and hide in yellow building
From the start, the game balanced on a knife edge, with I unwilling to commit fully to any one objective or able to take advantage of my mobility,
Arrow Cross blackshirts take cover in a wood under machinegun fire
I attempted to lure and skewer the StuGs (my main worry) with my scouting Cromwells, but succeeded in only attracting the Hungarian artillery.

And exchanging a few long ranged shots to no effect

Meanwhile, on another table, the main British armoured column ran into a StuG company...
On my right, my smaller platoon and HQ platoon bombarded the infantry holed up in the yellow building, while taking fire from supporting German aircraft.

In the heart of the action the StuGs re-positioned and brought the pain to 1st platoon...

Killing two in exchange for one of their own.
 The flanking infantry manged to finish off the platoon, who were bailed and vulnerable, protected only by the IC in a tetrarch. He managed to put up quite a fight, but was eventually blown up by with a panzershrek. They really should have redeployed...

As it turns out, I would have lost anyway, as you can now put yourself out of good spirits by having a platoon out of command, so even if I had won the assault, I would have failed my formation last stand anyway. Something to remember for the future.

The captured flaktrack burns as my line collapses

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Operation Cannon Ball - Armada

Insurgent vessels are engaged in mapping asteroid clusters near trading routes. Intelligence suggests they may be engaged in setting up bases for piracy or convoy raiding. Let them no that we are onto them, and that their activities will not go unopposed.

Threat Assessment
Variable - The local volume is full of asteroids and the insurgents will attempt to use this to their advantage. Keep your speed low and watch out for ambushes.

Combat Report
I think my deployment is getting better, but my fleet selection definitely needs work. Both the Jerkzanti - courtesy of our local gaming podcast and my Quasar failed to bring the pain, the latter, probably because it was out of position, the former, perhaps because it never got into it.
Deployment, with the traditional YOLO run setup from the ISD

I'm still not entirely sure how to use the Quasar properly, so I decided to run it into asteroids to collect victory points, or at least, deny them to Alex.

Relentless stares down an MC80
The first turns were - as is traditional, unexceptional. Squall bumped into some asteroids while nervously eyeing up the rebel escorts to starboard, while missing an opportunity to alpha strike squadrons (admittedly with fighters). Relentless dithered with its speed, trying to get the drop on the MC80 while Suppressor tried to do something unseful. Insidious yes, Insidious went for the flank.

It should be noted that I'd scored the first turn, which probably won me the game, as Alex was unable to fly a MC30 up my jacksie and keep it there.

Squall begins to have have A Bad Time while my fighters harass the scout frigate and trailing Hammerhead
My fighters finally got in on the action, jumping in on the reluctant rebel fighters, while Insidious and Relentless unloaded into the MC80.

*Pew! pew!*
Squall having racked up several points of hull damage already from hoovering up objectives, actually survived rebel fire long enough to plow into the MC80 losing its last hitpoint and exploding.

 Relentless' retaliation was swift and the MC80 was dispatched at the start of the next turn.

More explosions!
 At this point, my first turn advantage really came into its own. The below should have been a worrying set up, with several small short ranged units behind my ISD.
Pictured: no bueno!
 But because I had first turn Relentless was able to...

...Melt an MC30...

...Melt a hammerhead...
...Then fly the fuck away
Alex conceded at this point, foreseeing this series of events was bound to repeat itself over the coming turns (perhaps with less melting).

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Operation Goulash - Democratic Uprising Finds It's Feet In Hungary! Jerry On The Run As Our Boys Aid Local Resistance!

Our little Flames of War community has grown slightly of late, with new forces arriving in the form of the Hungarians. In order to make sense of a 3 player game we played - British and Hungarians vs Germans - we decided that the background was a second front being opened up in the Balkans after successes in Italy. The paras have been sent in to link up with democratic elements that the Foreign Office has been convinced are primed for insurrection.

Apparently there was a democratic (along with communist) resistance to the German occupation. They weren't very effective. This may have been because of the rampaging armoured trains.

Paras and feral university students stream through the streets of Portsmouth a nameless Hungarian town
Things got off to a bad start when Alex' reserves turned up on turn 1...

*Sigh* Choo choo motherfuckers...
The opening rounds of the game mostly consisted in maneuvering towards the German lines which exchanging artillery fire.

Hungarian StuGs loaned by the occupying Germans are now turned against their creators
The PzIVs executed their ambush, sniping at the distant StuGs, killing one, leaving my 6pdrs badly out of place. As they began the ardous process of re positioning, Hungarian anti-tank guns destroyed the lead car on the train.

Paras push to the right to support the Hungarian rebels...

Who take up positions in the buildings in front, supported by the StuGs

The German armoured train rains artillery down on the paras mortars, killing two, and pinning the Hungarian AT...

While the PzIV's advance towards lurking panzershreks
Version 4 is the first time I've had to worry about enemy air power. There are no real anti air choices in my go to lists, and it's slightly annoying.

The Luftwaffe kills bombs the paras pushing right

While reserves arrive to take the rear objective, uncontested!
Towards the mid-game the lines bogged down, mostly trading fire as we set up our assault on the right.
Things go badly wrong for the PzIVs...

...As the para assault platoon prepares to attack, supported by the StuGs and covering fire from the buildings behind them
At this point, more German reserves showed up, this time in our rear, too late to change the flow of the battle, but with enough firepower to cause us problems.

Brummbars? More like Room Brooms

After taking significant casualties, the assault platoon digs in and leaves this fight to the Hungarians
Meanwhile, any German assault on the left ran into trouble.

Southern Rail regrets to inform you...

The Hungarian StuGs push the Germans off the forward objective

German infantry dismounts from the train and begins to advance on the rear objective, but too late, as Hungarian artillery pins them in place

The 6pdrs get some action, killing a Brummbar

Hungarian conscripts decide to attack the Germans from the rear

While others spot an easy target in the shape of  the final - bailed out - PzIV
The battle ended with the from of the German train engulfed in flames while its infantry contingent tried, too late, to oust the Paras from the rear objective. But with the other objective safely under the protection of the StuGs it really was a solid victory for the democratic rebels and their paras allies.

Operation Goulash will return!

Operation Flapjack - Armada

Insurgent ships have been detected at the edge of our sensor range. Intercept and destroy as many ships as you can.

Threat Assessment
Unknown - Sensor contacts are unclear. The insurgent fleet is either using less common ship types or the signal is being distorted by nearby anomalies. There appear to be multiple small contacts rather than larger ships; be cautious of flanking attempts.

Combat Report
Gonna be honest, I've forgotten a lot about this game; I should have got this battle report written up weeks ago. I've got fairly good memories of what happened but some of the details are fuzzy, so hear goes.

I deployed my ISD for one of my patented YOLO attacks runs - which meant it spent most of it's time dicking around in the rear.

This left the VSD on my left go stuck right, going down by turn 3, but not before killing a hammerhead.
And then the VSD arrived...
I should mention that I was losing the fighter game, but my defenders met their objectives, turning the space around the station into a meat-grinder and pinning Alex' bombers for the entirety of the game.

And then the VSD opened up, melting both the Nebulon and the Phoenix and boarding team ran amok.

Saturday, 9 September 2017

Gaming roundup

Hello rebel scum, I'm sure you wouldn't want to ruin your losing streak by winning the final mission or anything...

Oh hey, nice ritual your having, mind if we blunder in and kill everyone?
Flames 4th edition - officially baffling
Hungarians take on the British Paras

A cinematic shot, but will it be enough to halt the Hungarians? No, no it wont.

All that Remains gets played and critiqued
For bonus gaming, head to the All That Remains Project blog to read more!

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

Russian armour holds bridgehead

The Russian offensive grinds on. Abelard has regrouped with German armoured elements and is tasked with capturing a rail head recently identified as in use by the invaders. It's refreshing to be facing an honest foe, rather than one willing to pretend to be ones allies. He's excited, but confident. There are relatively few enemy troops at the bridgehead, if he moves quickly, perhaps he can capture it without loosing a man.


Abelard's group form up near an industrial park

Russian armour clusters around the train station
I decided to play aggressively; to avoid repeating the failings in my previous games and it yielded instant results.

2 T-55 are left burning
 I even got reserves on turn 1 (luckily) and a Panther platoon rushed to lock down the centre.

Stu brings on his hind wing

And pops his ambush
This is where I got lucky. Stu neglected to flank my Panthers with his ambushers, leading to only one being bailed. The Hinds also failed to cause any effect.

Pop goes the Russian
In my turn, I abandoned the centre, choosing to push up my second Panther platoon to reinforce the left flank and return fire smoked all the ambushers.

Hinds line up for kill
 Up 'til this point my AAA had been completely ineffective, but as the Hinds opened up on the second Panther platoon, a missile finally found it's mark and a Hind dropped from the sky in flames. The Hinds failed to kill a Panther again, but flanking T-55's landed a shot on the rear of a Panther killing it and force the unit to flee.

And this is when things started to fall apart
I decided to push for the objective, certain of victory. This was first turn when Stu could bring on (delayed, scattered) reserves. I didn't do the maths (it was 8 in 9), but I was pretty sure that I'd have the objective uncontested at the end of my next turn.

I even popped the Russian commander
 Things did not go well...
Surprise reserves!

 Lets just say things quickly unwound after that.

This one genuinely broke my heart, I could taste victory, and it was snatched from me! Other than ignoring the possibility of being flanked by the ambushers (who I could see coming), I think I played the odds correctly, and it went against at the last moment.