Monday, 15 April 2013

Volksgrenadiers - Volks Light Artillery Battery (10.5cm leFH18/40) and Heavy Artillery Battery (15cm sFH18)

Hi again everyone

I thought today I'd show off the artillery I'm working on. 

I painted the guns in the same way as my tanks, which I think has worked really well. The light got camo with the gunshields, but the heavy ones I left off the camo. There are some lovely little details on both models to pick out range sticks and the foot plates, which help break up the models nicely
Artillery is one of my favourite units in my British army, but then, that's due to all the excellent rules, rerolling saves and medium support well it makes British artillery possibly the best in the game IMHO.

For the Germans though, artillery doesn't have those rules, but does it have a place? I tend to think that it does.
The infantry are painted in the same way, with a nice little group around the staff table.

Firstly your opponent is forced to spread out his men, this allows you to assault easier due to less defending power on any one point, the other advantage I think is that you have the opportunity to reach over the entire board to damage the enemy, no longer are you limited to the direct approach, so useful countering enemy artillery and support.

It does however have a big footprint, and is unless dug in is vulnerable to enemy artillery. You also only get the choice of 3 or 6 guns, meaning that any 1 casualty loses the bonus of a full battery. And finally if you're defending, you really need to start with them deployed, limiting your other options.
In the Volksgrenadier list you have 3 options for artillery and I thought I'd just run down my thoughts on them.

You have two Volksgrenadier batteries (either CV or RT), these guys are the light, they can either have the leFH18/40 or the FK40. The FK40 is basically some Pak40's which can shoot an artillery bombardment - and don't think I haven't toyed with the idea of a platoon of 6 of these just to form a nasty Pak line! For long range fire though they are lacking with AT3 FP6.
The FH though is true artillery, ROF 1 so not great in straight up defense,  but AT4 and FP4+ is respectable, and with smoke as another option is versatile.

For the Heavy battery you have sFH18 which is your full on AT5 FP2+ artillery for damaging the enemy, great against vehicles,but against infantry without rules forcing rerolls to saves how often do you get the chance to use the 2+? The one german advantage is that you don't need light guns to take heavy!

You then have the Volks Corps options, always RT. They're cheaper which is good, as they are already expensive in points! you have the KH433, which again provides a powerful bombardment, but also 32inch direct fire with bunker bust, AT13 and FP1+ it has other uses. The other option is the Pak43again poor bombardment, but lethal direct fire, much like it's friend the Pak40.

Anyway I hope you like my ramblings on big guns, till next time, thanks for reading

Dr Cox


  1. Nice! This is the next FOW I'm painting up, though I'll be going with a full battery of KH433(r) guns. Love those winter models

  2. cheers, i keep looking on ebay for a couple more to get a 6 gun battery

  3. Very nice unit, and an interesting discussion...

    I have a battery of 4 leFH18s for my Wehrmacht... but I nearly always end up taking 3 x 15cm Nebs instead... cheaper points, generally easier to range in (something about throwing 3 dice at once, psychological I know!), can pin or smoke, and has decent range. Only downside is no direct fire and can't stay ranged in...

    Whenever I have played the 'proper artillery' game I usually find they fail to deliver... on getting the BBB book I took a list, against Paras, that had 105's, Nebs, 12cm Mortars, Infantry guns, and HQ mortars... played Hold the Line... 3 turns of firing all this at the dug in GTG paras on front objective had managed to kill one light mortar team... it wasn't a good day to be German! had I fired it all as smoke, it would have allowed my grenadier to advance unmolested... but I just had it fixed in my head I was going to flatten everything... it didn't happen...

    My other experiment has been Hummels, this is still an experiment in progress, its had one semi-successful game against Soviet armour... I'd like to try them in a direct fire role against infantry but I am wary of exposing them to counter fire as their armour is thin...

    Keep up the good work

  4. Scott great points as always! Strangely nebs are one of the few units I don't have - I plan to get some painted though.

    The only difficulty with them in this list is the reluctant nature, it just means once they get pinned they're so much less likely to unpin. But if I had a cv option I'd have them already!