Wednesday, 16 January 2013

Brighton Bash 2013 - Late War Tournament AAR

Hello All Ben here,

so this weekend I went to the Brighton Bash, me first ever FOW tournament. I took my US Paras that I have been working on for the last 3 months a head of this tournament. The event set up was simple,  Late War 1750pts with no Special Characters and 5 Games over 2 days, also every game was to be Allied vs Axis. I really liked this as I enjoy more traditional games than blue on blue games. This is not to say I'm a historical purest, but I like my games to have that this could have happened element to them.

Being my first tournament I set myself some goals. Firstly I wanted to try and win 3 out of the 5 games, I did think this might be a bit ambitious but thought it was best to aim high. My second goal was to not get 1-6 in any of the games and my third goal was to have fun and have a nice time. My prep for the tournament didn't go as well as I hoped as on the Friday night I got about 3 hours sleep thanks to my 13 month old daughter having a chest infection and waking up every 1 and a half.... I gave up trying to sleep at 3am and played a couple of hours of Halo online and drank a few letres of coffee before Dr Cox picked me up. The journey there was also a nightmare as the rain literally hammered the car and an points we also had thunder and lightning! But we turned up in rain hit Brighton in one piece and found the pub the event was being held in. After a little debrief I found my way to table number 2 and my first opponent.

My list for the event was US Paras from Nuts!:-

  • HQ
  • US Para Platoon + 1 Bazooka and 2 rifle teams turned into Bazookas
  • US Para Platoon + 1 Bazooka and 2 rifle teams turned into Bazookas and rifle "downgrade"
  • Veteran Sherman Platoon with 2 M4A3 Lates and 2 M4A3 76mm
  • Tank Destroyer Platoon with 4 M18's
  • Glider Artillery
  • Glider Artillery + Jeeps
  • AOP
Game 1 - Tony Bellew - Schwere Panzer Company - No Retreat


Tony was part of the Irish invasion force at the event, like me this was his first real tournament. He was using a Tiger I company from Grey Wolf, his list was:-
  • 2 HQ Tigers
  • 2 Tigers
  • 2 Tigers
  • Full Grenadier Platoon with Panzerfaust
  • 3 Nebs
  • 2 Anti-Air vehicles (can't remember which ones)
  • 5 stand scout platoon  

Tony was a great guy and we had a nice relaxed game, I was defending as I had infantry and I set up one platoon of Paras on the front objective, artillery on the back objective and I had my Tank Destroyers to go forward and try to slow down the advancing Tigers. Tony deployed to race forward as fast as possible.

The game began well for me, my M18 ambush kill a platoon of 2 Tigers in the first round of fire, they survived the return fire before killing the Scout Platoon which was being annoying and kept lifting gone to ground on my Para Platoon for his Nebs. The M18's luck didn't last much longer and the Tigers massed up there fire and this time broke them, but they had done what I needed them to do and hold up the Tigers for a few turns for my reserves to arrive.

After this the critical turn of the game took place. Tony advanced his tigers into my forward platoon of Paras, if he could broke the platoon I would have not been able to get any men close enough to the objective in my next turn so I would have lost the game. The Tigers didn't so much in the first round of combat but either did my counter attack, The Second round saw a few Paras die and I was starting to get worried. So I counter attacked with the 4 remaining paras, my Bazooka missed but the 3 paras hit, Tony looked worried but I said don't worry they are only tank assault 3... so Tony rolls 1,1,1.... bailing 3 out of the 4 Tigers. Tony had to counter attack but all was not lost as his remaining Tiger passed all motivation tests on a 2+, so a 4th 1 and I capture the 3 Tigers.

After this Tony was always fighting an up hill struggle, I made a few mistakes mopping up and lost my Shermans to the last remaining Tiger (I might have trying to get into a shooting match with it....) and I last the Paras who had defeated the Tigers to a Neb bombardment. Finally my second platoon of Paras charged the last Tiger and I broke the Company.

The Game ended 4-3 to me and 14-7 on the tournament scoring system.

Game 2 - Ulick O'Sullivan - Sturm Company - Breakthrough

So a win to start the event, so far so good. Next up was Ulick, also part of the Irish Invasion force, he was a bit more experienced than Tony having been part of Team Ireland in the European Championship. He was using Sturm Company with a lot of Fortifications. His list was:-
  • HQ + 2 Panzerschecks
  • Sturm Platoon + Panzerfaust
  • Sturm Platoon + Panzerfaust
  • 2x 2 HMG Platoons
  • 2 Pak 40's
  • 2 Hornisse
  • 3 Anti Aircraft Guns (again I can't remember what they are)
  • 2 Nebs
  • 4 15cm Artillery
  • 2x Field Strong Points (3 Trench Lines + HMG Bunker)
  • 2x Bared Wire (4 sets of Bared Wire)

I was attacking as Ulick's list was fortified, I decided to put both Para Platoons and the Shermans in reserve so they would not have to attack over the fortifications in the middle. Ulick had covered this by putting bared wire across my entry point.

I decided early on that I would struggle to take the objectives so I planned on killing enough platoons to make Ulick take company moral checks. My plan started well when my AOP popped up next to the Hornesse platoon that was bunched up, my artillery ranged in on the first roll and wiped out the platoon. Ulick started moving his infantry towards the objectives as I had no real treat to his infantry.

Ulick took a risk on his second turn and doubled his infantry towards the objective. This turned out to be a mistake as my Shermans promptly and machine gunned them into a bloody mess. My Tank destroyers worked their way around the sides and attacked the weaker German units on the flanks taking out the Nebs and softening up the infantry.

It all looked like it was going well until I brought my infantry on. Ulick's bared wire really slowed my infantry down and to make it worst his men were in position and I was taking a beating. I carried on my plan of trying to break the company and I slowly got to the 5th platoon kill, at this point I had lost my Shermans and M18s and dug in my battered infantry. I couldn't see a way I could have assaulted the MG infantry. So leaving it to company moral checks I made sure my turns were as quick as possible to hope I'd get the win that way. Ulick passed 3 company moral checks to hold on for the win. I will aim that fair play to Ulick, he could have stalled out and not made at least one if not two of the test, but he didn't. It was a great close game that really could have been won of either of us. I think the end result was fair as I messed up with my infantry on the wire and that cost me. If I played that game again I think I would have left the infantry on the table to try and keep the Germans in the fox wholes so my Shermans could have run riot in the back field, but that's hindsight for you.

The Game ended 3-4 to Ulick and 9-12 on the tournament system.

Game 3 - Tom Warburton - Finnish Infantry - Fighting Withdrawal

So 1 and 1 after 2 games and next up a Finnish Infantry Company, one of my favourite lists in FOW. Tom was a really nice guy and we had the slightly odd situation were I knew his army rules better than him, but he knew my army rules better than me! Anyway as we were both infantry lists we had to roll off to see who defended, I "lost" the dice off and set about my defence, (I will be honest I'm glad I had to defend, I'm not sure I could have attacked Tom's 10 platoons) Toms list was:-
  • All Fearless Veteren
  • HQ
  • Infantry Platoons with Panzerfausts
  • Infantry Platoons with Panzerfausts
  • Infantry Platoons with Panzerfausts
  • 2 pak40's
  • 2 pak40's
  • 1 SU 152
  • 3 StuGs
  • Mortars
  • HMGs
  • 4 10.5cm Artillery
I deployed both my Para platoons to cover the middle and my right hand objectives, I put my Shermans in ambush to be my counter punch. I also had my Tank Destroyer cover the middle objective but spread out enough to be able to pop up on any of the objectives. Tom deployed mainly on his left my right and the middle, I think he did a good job of keeping his Anti Tank guns mixed in with the infantry.

Tom push everything he could towards me, while I tried to use my Artillery to pin down the attackers. I popped my ambush quite early on my left flank to catch an infantry platoon in the open, two turns of shooting later the infantry platoon broke from combined fire from the .50 cals and MG fire. The critical turn come on turn 3 were Tom tried to assault me off of the right hand objective. A platoon of infantry and the StuGs come into combat with me. The infantry bounced after a couple of rounds of combat, then the StuGs came in one was bailed up a Bazooka before the assault started and another one was bailed by the Paras in combat. Tom then failed his motivation (a common problem for him the whole game) and I captured two of the StuGs, my next round the M18's popped up and killed the last StuG. Toms infantry than had assault then failed to unpin and this gave me enough time to withdrawal the now battered infantry and remove the objective.

At this point the game was won as tome couldn't reach an objective before the game was over. Having killed 2 platoons I withdraw back to the center objective and a few turns later the it was all over. I felt a bit sorry for Tom as his troops kept failing to unpin despite being fearless and I don't think he could have done anything different, also as I said above I'm not sure I could have attacked Tom and won.

The game ended 6-1 to me and 19-2 on the tournament scoring system.

Game 4 - Matt Booth - German Poineers - Counter Attack

So I ended day one with 2 wins and a lose, one more win and I would have achieved one of my goals for the weekend! My opponent was Matt with his Poineers from the PDF. I again "lost" the dice off and had to defend. Matt's list was:-

  • HQ + 2 Panzerfausts
  • Full 10 Stand Pioneer Platoon + Panzerfaust + Cart
  • Full 10 Stand Pioneer Platoon + Panzerfaust + Cart
  • 4 StuH's
  • 1 King Tiger
  • 2 FlaK 8.8cm's + Extra Crew
  • 2 3.7cm Armoured Anti Aircraft
  • Limited Hs129

For this mission I had to put my Shermans into reserve and I held one of my Para platoons in ambush. Matt used his Bared wire to cut me off from the second objective but I also knew that this would slow him down from getting to the objective anytime soon and hopefully if he did try my Shermans would get into him before he could hold the objective. Matt also choices to have the maxium number of flame throwers.

Matt started the game by advancing towards my lines, mainly the infantry at the back right hand side. He had a few pop shots with his StuH''s but failed to hit. After a little think I decided to decloak my M18's on turn one to engage the StuH's. My AOP bravely popped up around his infantry as I could get two platoons in one shot. My Artillery did their job and pinned down both infantry platoons. My M18's did more then I expected of them and killed 3 of the 4 StuH's bailing the other one! The bailed one promptly fled off the table, all in all a good start.

Matt failed to unpin one of the Pioneer platoons and advanced the other one towards my M18's, this would be were I learnt a rule I didn't know. Matt used one of his flame throwers to attack my M18's, I thought that's fine all thats going to happen is I might get bailed... wrong it seems top armour 0 AFV die on a successful skill test! Fortunately Matt only hit once and I only lost 1 M18, Matt then tried to assault the M18's but even with cover I pinned down the assault force before the pioneers could do any damage.

Over the next few turns my artillery kept on pounding the infantry in the open while my Shermans turned up and started making their way to the objectives, but they would never get there as Matt's plane kept on killing the platoon leader forcing me to run my 2IC over to promote a new one. Matt did managed to assault my M18's and destroyed them. After this his King Tiger rushed my artillery and after a few turns of shooting and assaults he killed the right side platoon.

At this point my Para platoon charge towards the below half strength pioneer platoon that had killed the M18's and killed the platoon before charging the King Tiger killing it and the company commander in assault. After this Matt's company was below half strength and without his Company Commander or 2IC his army broke.

The Game ended 4-3 to me and 15-6 on the tournament scoring system.

Game 5 - Robert Peare - Kampfgruppe Bake - Dust Up

So one objective down with a game spare having one three games with one game left to not get 1-6 to complete the other one. My opponent was Rob, a Kiwi over in Briton for a holiday. He had a very beautifully painted Kampfgruppe Bake army that was winter themed (it was a shame we didn't fight on a winter table with the two winter themed armies!). His list was:-

  • HQ Panther
  • 3 Panthers
  • 2 Tigers
  • 2 3.7cm Half Tracks
  • Short Pioneers
  • Short Scouts
  • Full Mountain Troopers + Panzer Faust 

I one the dice off to attack and deployed one Artillery Platoon, one Para Platoon and the tank destroyers with the Shermans and second Para and Artillery platoons in reserve. Rob deployed his Anti Air, Mountain Troops and Scouts. The first few turns didn't see much action as both of us waited for the reserves to do the attacking. My artillery took a few pop shots at the HQ Panther and scouts but didn't do much.

One turn 3 my Sherman's turned up and moved up to attack the Mountain troops and Anti Air around the objectives. I also risked the AOP to bombard the anti air, it all worked as the artillery killed one while the Shermans bailed one and then the platoon routed.

Next up my Paras turned up and quickly doubled timed towards the objectives. My Shermans kept up the pressure on the Mountain Troops but couldn't even pin them let alone kill anything. My Artillery did little better and failed to range in on the troops for 2 turns. Rob's reserves finally arrived and his Tigers and Panthers started moving towards my objective. The Tigers took some really long shots at my double timing Paras but didn't hit anything.

I pondered my next move and thought it best to assault the Mountain troops quickly to try and force Rob's hand at the other objective. So my Sherman's advanced towards the center of the infantry while the Paras moved up to the flank. I again failed to pin the troops but my Shermans assaulted with little trouble and pushed the Germans off the objective. They moved up to try and contest the objective in Rob's turn but I again assaulted them and this time I controlled both objectives with no hope of contesting either. So Rob decided to try and get a platoon or two off of me for VP's. He successfully assault my Artillery and wiped out a platoon, but after a long draw out fight failed to kill my para platoon. So with that I won the game. I would just like to say Rob was a great opponent and rightfully won most sporting, I hope one day somehow we get to play again.

The Game ended 5-2 to me and 16-5 on the tournament scoring system.

Overview

Well I must say not only did I enjoy a well run and great event, I was also shocked at how well I did! 4 wins out of 5 was far more than I thought I'd get. I also ended up 6th out of 36th, not to bad for my first tournament! I would also like to thank my 5 opponents for 5 great games, most of them could have gone either way which is something I always enjoy. I was also surprise by how nice everyone was, I'm mainly use to Blood Bowl and 40K tournaments, while Blood Bowl isn't to bad 40k events generally have a large minority of players who just seem to be there to ruin everyone else's fun! Everyone at the Brighton Bash was more than just nice, they were welcoming and were more than for coming with advice. I was planning on attending 5 events this year, I may (if I can get permission from the wife....) go to 6 or 7 events.

I will say my one gripe with the event was the lighting wasn't great but the guys running it did their best to improve it so I won't complain about that to much. I will be back new year for the next event, not only is it red vs blue it'll also be a themed tournament (my favourate sort of event!), it looks like they'll be doing Normandy. Currently I think I'll either do 7th Armoured or 21st Panzer, but I'll wait for confirmation before I buy anything.

Well until next time thanks for reading Ben.

14 comments:

  1. You really had to suffer for this. You got some great pics and you did well. Congratulations on your first tournament.

    I hope the little one is feeling better.

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  2. Congrats on the results, tournaments can be a great place to meet some new opponents and have a bit of fun. Double congrats on beating Bob - since he is a fellow kiwi (and regular opponent of mine) it is always good to see people on the other side of the world knocking him down a peg or two :)

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  3. Hey Ben,

    Congratulations on a very successful 1st Tournament :)

    Also thanks for the great write up. Was a pleausre to read :) Are you going to Corrivalry?

    Cheers,

    Manny

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  4. Great job, my man. I really appreciate you providing the army lists. Getting ready for a tournament reminds me of getting ready for a camping weekend: I always end up going to bed late and not sleeping well.

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  5. Congrats on doing so well for your 1st tourney. That sounded like a lot of fun. Am not yet ready myself to step into that arena, but am hoping I can do half as good as you in my first outing.

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  6. Excellent read Ben. Well done in the tournie.(gotta feel sorry for the Tiger commander in the first game...)

    Rob (Or Bob as we know him here down under) Pearce, is a mate and top bloke as you say.
    Glad you got to play him.

    If you're ever up for a trip to NZ I'm sure we could put some games on for you.

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    Replies
    1. Bob really is a top bloke and I'm glad he got best sport.

      Thanks for the offer, Bob said something similar. My wife does want to go on holiday, maybe I should convince her to go to NZ!

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    2. We'd love to have you!

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  7. Congratulations man. 6th (of 36) placing in your first FoW tourney...that's magnificent!! Well done. You led those fearless vets well :)
    Ben, how many hours were allocated for each round? Am I right in guessing the were 18 tables set up...since 36 took part. Thanks for the info.

    Congrats again. Currahee!!

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  8. well done you....even with little sleep befofre hand. Looks like it was a great event. Great report.
    Cheers

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  9. Thanks everyone.

    I have a feeling I won't be doing so well in my next tournament, mainly as it has 100 players.

    But I'll post up more about that at a later date.

    Thanks Ben

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  10. Cheers for the positive write-up. Glad you enjoyed it. Tom Warburton is a regular opponent and passing fearless motivation tests has never been his strong suit!

    Short of finding an electrician and a pile of money lighting is always going to be our downfall along with space (oh, but for a few feet extra width on the room!)

    Hope to see you in a future tournament!

    Lee

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    1. Hi Lee

      The thanks should be all mine as you guys ran a great event with great tables. I know there is little you can do about the lighting, but the fact you guys did do something about it on the day to make it as good as possible was more than enough for me.

      I will defiantly be at next years LW tournament. I'm hoping it's -Day themed as I love themed events! I'm already planning my 21st Panzer or 7th Armoured depending on weather I'm Allied or Axis.

      Ben

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