Willkommen mein herren, to ze second instalment of mein journey into Flames of War (FoW).
Last time I discussed about what a cool game it is and some history behind my dudes, this time I hope to delve a bit more into the make-up of the list I’ll be playing; a mechanised German SS Company.
This is my chariot of choice^, the versatile Sd. Kfz. 251 (or Sonderkraftfahrzeug 251 to the cool kidz) but we’re going to call them Skids from here on in mostly because it means me not having to pronounce that word in my head each time or use that ungodly acronym again. It was an incredibly versatile vehicle (pronounced va-hick-ill to our friends in Navan) with 23 official variants (like comms, artillery, weapon upgrades, AA, etc.) and a billion unofficial addons:
These vehicles form the core of my mechanised list, carrying around both my Commander, 2ic, platoon commanders and the platoons themselves. They have some neat special rules, some German and some just for half tracks and give you great bang for your buck. I won’t go too much into the special rules but will try and highlight just what makes these glorified tractors so good.
1. They’re Half-Tracks
– so they move 12″ just like wheeled vehicles and can go 18″ on roads. FoW is played on a 6’x4′ just like Warhammer 40,000 or WHFB so you can see quickly that transports tend to move at respectable speeds in this game too.
2. They don’t have wheels…
– so they don’t get stopped by very difficult going terrain types instead they need to take a skill test to get passed them. While this is dangerous enough at least it gives you the option of jumping on that objective whereas a jeep would just whimper and turn back.
The same applies to barbed wire so wheeled transports can’t even attempt to get passed them and tracked vehicles can. It’s not necessarily an easy skill test to make but like I said having the option of entering that part of the battlefield opens up for the game for you and, just as importantly, your opponent.
3. Mounted Assault
….that’s exactly what I was implying.
Back on topic, German mechanised units have this really cool special rule that essentially makes every Skid a Land Raider! It’s exactly as cool as it sounds, so these half tracks are more versatile than wheeled vehicles and more versatile again when compared with opposition half-tracked vehicles.
4. Halt! Hammerzeit!
– Obligatory picture to follow but first some rules. In FoW whenever a transport delivers it’s fleshy human cargo to an objective/assault/cover etc. they’re sent to the back of the lines i.e. removed from the game. Coming from 40k I was pretty shocked at this but was quite relieved when I read the German special rule that says they don’t go anywhere, they stay put and lay down a withering hail of fire.
So this is roughly what they’ll look like for gaming purposes (ignore the Tiger tank).
At the front we have my commander and his second in command (2ic) and behind them two platoons of four Skids. One Skid in each platoon goes to the platoon commanders and each of the rest has two squads mounted up. I’m going to get cracking on painting this force up nice and quickly to get it to a tabletop standard hopefully.
So half-tracks are pretty nifty and I have a feeling that if I’m to master this list it will be through the use of these semi durable transports.
Next time: Getting out of Mein Kampfort zone.