Kent and I had our first game of FoW against each other in several months. Kent's FoW collection has been decimated thanks to him selling off most of his stuff. I continue to mess around with motostrelkovy ideas and turned up to face a panzer company. Kent had set up the terrain and we rolled for mission and got a breakthrough.
Kent's LW Panzer Company
2x HQ Panzer IVs
4x Panzer IVs
4x Panzer IVs
Limited HS 129s
We eye balled points for him as he made up his list on the fly- and press ganged a couple of Panzer IIIs into service as Mk IVs as he didn't have enough.
I had decided to try the Sukas + SU 85 combo supporting my motostrelk- facing lots of veteran tanks the sukas and reconw ere unlikely to do much. Still if my reserves arrive when I want them this could be interesting.
2x 2 platoon companies
6x T34s (incl 5x T34/85s)
4x SU 85
4x SU 76
3x BA 64s
Kent's objectives are the red squares. As you can see I defended one quarter only- as I tend to do, with a few pickets strung out to annoy the Germans- I find a solid defence like this usually works better for me as defending both quarters results in one part of the force being picked apart. However I really should have defended the river rather than fall back as I had no AT guns (apart from the T34s) to deal with enemy armour. We decided the river was simply difficult going so that the Germans weren't bottled up trying to get the bridge- I think we'll make it very difficult next time though!
Kent made a KG of 3 panzers for his flanking force.
Turn 1- the HS 129s miss the T34s. The front T34 has been knocked out by tigers at long range (re-roll misses was the tiger skill)destroy a T34 and pin my 2nd company- which fails to unpin for 3 turns- even with the CiC being handy!
Panzers advance on the open flank.
The Red Airforce knocks out a tiger!
The German advance continues. The KG has also arrived and has started merrily machine gunning my non dug in infantry!
Turn 4: The Sukas arrive behind the panzer IVs and only manage to hit 1- which is only bailed (6 for his save, grrrrr) and promptly remounts. Uh oh.
This isn't good! Kent's panzer IVs turn round to deal with the Suka threat. And one volley wipes them all out. At the far end of the table my T34s are retreating to tangle with the KG but one falls prey to a tiger shot at extreme range, two others are KOed by the panzer IVs and the survivors leg it!
Meanwhile my infantry continue to move towards the objectives.
The SU 85s arrive and hide amongst the burning wrecks of the Sukas. 4 shots, 1 hit, 1 dead panzer!then in turn 5 massed panzer fire destroys all the SU 85s and my infantry again fail to unpin and so cannot move to contest the objective.
Game to Kent 6-1 at the start of turn 6!
Not a good start for the motostrelkovy. The Red Airforce hit the tigers 3 times but twice were saved or only bailed.
Kent massed his tanks and dealt with the threats as required. I hate panzer IVs when using infantry- stugs you can charge and with a bit of luck not be pinned, the extra MG of the panzer IVs makes this more unlikely. My T34s didn't fare well. More numbers may be needed so they can hang round a bit longer? And I also felt short of infantry- an extra platoon or two could have been handy.
By turn 2 I was wishing I had a strelkovy with a GoW to catch some of those spread out panzers in a BIG template as i lacked the ability to disrupt the panzer IVs- thanks to the sniping tigers! A bit better rolling on my behalf with my SUs and I could have gutted one or other of the panzer platoons though. Finally my failure to defend the river in both quarters was a monumental error in judgement.
Still not convinced the motostrelk are the way to go unless they either have an ATP platoon or two tank companies for mobility. Back to the drawing board I guess, but I've a few more ideas to test out...