Friday, December 23, 2011

North Africa Figure Review - 1250 Points and Tobruk Raid Game

For our early war North Africa escalation league at Adler Hobby the December award was a free blister for a completed 1250-point early war force from the "Hellfire and Back" or "Burning Empires" books including two properly themed objectives. Gordon, the store owner, requested that each player provide a photograph of their completed 1250-point force for him to post in the store and send to Battlefront. The top photograph here is my 1250-point Australian Commonwealth Infantry Company. It's comprised of the HQ, two infantry platoons, an infantry mortar platoon, two divisional cavalry platoons comprised of captured Italian tanks (with Kangaroos on them!), a scout patrol of one platoon of universal carriers and a battery of artillery equipped with OQF 18/25 guns. I couldn't figure out how to get a good force composition at 1250 points with an even number of platoons, so I'll be slightly disadvantaged in 'halfsies' missions. Such is the nature of escalation leagues.

Below are two photographs of additional early-war platoons I've painted up for the league. The left photograph has a battery of captured Italian 47/32 AT guns, a platoon of Humber II armoured cars, a platoon of portee 2 pounder AT guns (with an additional Breda 20mm to proxy when the platoon is used as a portee 47/32 AT platoon), two platoons of Universal carriers and eight Chev trucks which I've modelled without gunners and guns so I can use them as transport, or by adding some additional gunners, as raiding units. The right photograph is two Crusader II CS tanks (to act as the HQ of a Crusader squadron), two Crusader III, and four Crusader II tanks to act as two combat platoons of Crusaders. The Crusader III tanks will have to proxy for earlier Crusaders in early war, but since the only difference is a very slight difference in the main gun assembly I doubt anyone will call me on that. With all of these units my Australians are ready to field forces all the way up to 1750 points. I might add the occasional additional platoon for fun, but I can field this as a complete company now using these additional platoons.

Below are additional mid-war units that will allow the above force to extend into mid war as either a British Light Armoured squadron, British Heavy Armoured squadron or an Australian infantry company. On the left is a squadron of Deacons - armoured 6 pounder portee AT guns which were just too ugly to resist. On the right is a heavy armoured platoon comprised of two Grant and one Lee tanks. In the front a CO in a Sherman II.

Finally my second force for early war is a German Stützpunkt defensive force. This will allow me to have an opponent for the Australians. The Germans have a fortified infantry platoon with 2cm and 5cm gun pits, two additional 88 gun pits, a mortar platoon, a platoon of Panzer IIc tanks (still in European colours) and a squadron of Stuka air support. I still have a ways to go on this army to finish it.

I took all of the above photos on one of the beautiful Adler Hobby gaming tables while waiting for my turn to fight a battle against Chris' Polish Tobruk defensive force with my German Stuützpunkt defensive force. Since we both were fielding fortified companies we played the "Tobruk Raid" scenario for the first time. Chris was suffering some brain melt from just trying another new scenario with Adam, so I tried to decipher the new scenario rules. We mostly got deployment right, but I incorrectly described the objective of the scenario so we both set up our defences covering the objective WE were supposed to capture not protect. This made for a very strange game nullifying most of the static defences. In a night battle with delayed reserves this deteriorated into mostly an infantry platoon vs. infantry platoon affair in which Chris' fearless Poles roughed up my Schützen platoon and ended up on the objective he had to capture early in the game. Still it was a good learning game for both of us and since it was late I was ok with losing quickly. Good game Chris!


Paul´s Bods said...

I like the "ugly " 6-pdr´s...:-D
Lovely looking army!
Happy X-mas

AJ (Allan) Wright said...

Yup me too! That's why I HAD to have them lol!

AdamC1776 said...

Two wins for Chris in one night...

Christopher(aka Axebreaker) said...

Impressive collection!