Bagrationing up my Germans

Andy takes a look at bringing his current German collection to Bagration standards.

I do not currently have a German army for Flames of War, but I do have a random collection of German models. These are ones that I have randomly acquired over the last couple of years from various places. This pile of models ebbs and flows depending on my whims; I will receive a collection of models from somewhere, only to move half of those on at a later date. A friend gave me the Armies of the Late War German boxset as he decided to go British instead. I then passed some of these on to another friend trying to start up a school club. You get the idea.

In the German pile I currently have:

  • Nine Panzer 4s
  • Nearly three Tigers (a pair of complete ones but the third is missing the bit on the back of the turret for some random reason)
  • Two Pumas
  • Three Wespes
  • The German Panzer Grenadier infantry from Hit the Beach

With the release of the new German Bagration, book I feel it’s time to turn this into a proper army. So here are my thoughts on turning that pile into a 125pt army.

The Obvious Choice

Looking at the above list, I think it’s fairly obvious that I’ll be fielding a Panzer IV tank company, which is fine by me as they are relatively cheap, (by German standards,) but still all round decent in the Late War. They can hold their own against Shermans, Cromwells and T-34s, and I’ll just have to make sure I can add in something with more punch for those pesky Churchills.

Plenty of options

The HQ has no options, it has to be two Panzer IVs, so that’s a fairly easy decision to make.
HQ – 2x Panzer IV – 11pts
= 11pts

The first mandatory black box also has to be Panzer IVs, but this time I get a choice of how many I want; 3, 4 or 5. For now I will just take the minimum of 3, I can always add in more later if I have points to spare.

So I now have:
HQ – 2x Panzer IV – 11pts
3x Panzer IV – 16pts
=27pts

Time to fill in the second mandatory box.

Choices to make

This box gives me plenty of options for my second mandatory unit; More Panzer IVs, StuGs, Panthers, Tigers or Armoured Infantry. I won’t use it for Panzer IVs, as there are some grey formation boxes I can use to take more of those. I don’t have any Panthers or Stugs, (well I do have ten StuGs sat on my future projects bookcase, but they are going to be Romanian ones when the Axis Allies book comes out in April).

Drools

Focus Andy, focus.

So that just leaves it as a choice between Tigers and infantry. I think I’ll go with the infantry option as it looks like my formation might just be a few small units, so if I take infantry I can just have them sat in a hole defending an objective and relying on them to help maintain formation morale.

The only infantry choice I’m allowed in the black box is Armoured Infantry, which come in halftracks, so less useful for sitting in a hole, but I have a cunning plan…

More cunning then a fuchs

If I use the Kampfgruppe command card, I can swap the armoured infantry for a Grenadier platoon. With the points saved, this basically means I swap the halftracks for two Panzerschrecks. Very handy for sitting in a hole and defending an objective!

This list now looks like this:

Panzer IV Tank Company
HQ Platoon – 2x Panzer IV – 11pts
Platoon 1 – Three Panzer IV – 16pts
Platoon 2 – Minimum sized Grenadier platoon with two additional Panzerschrecks – 11pts
=38pts

That’s all of the mandatory boxes filled, so now it’s time to flesh out some of the grey boxes.

More Panzers and a small zoo

Next, I’ll take another unit of Panzer IVs to add some more firepower to the formation. Just another small unit of three which I can add more to later (although I only have one spare now).

Panzer IV Tank Company
HQ Platoon – 2x Panzer IV – 11pts
Platoon 1 – Three Panzer IV – 16pts
Platoon 2 – Minimum sized Grenadier platoon with two additional Panzerschrecks – 11pts
Platoon 3 – Three Panzer IV – 16pts
=54pts

I also have those Tigers, Pumas and a box of Wespes in the pile, so I shall add those in as support. I normally try an avoid taking units of two for morale purposes, but Tigers have excellent armour and remount, so it’s less of an issue. As for Pumas, they only come in pairs, so I don’t really have a choice.

Panzer IV Tank Company 
HQ Platoon – 2x Panzer IV – 11pts
Platoon 1 – Three Panzer IV – 16pts
Platoon 2 – Minimum sized Grenadier platoon with two additional Panzerschrecks – 11pts
Platoon 3 – Three Panzer IV – 16pts 

Force Support
Tiger Platoon with two Tiger – 24pts
Puma Patrol with two Puma – 4pts
Wespes Battery with three Wespes – 9pts
=91pts

Shiny new things

Right, that’s my existing things taken care of, now it’s time to add the shiny new models.
First up, those fantastic looking new AA kits.

Dakka dakka and yet more dakka

It’s a choice between Wirbelwinds with a higher rate of fire or Ostwinds with better antitank and firepower. Now, the last time someone used aircraft against me, you had to choose between priority, limited or sporadic and roll the blue dice to see how many planes turned up, so I’m not really worried about aircraft. I’ll mostly be using the AA against infantry which means the higher rate of fire of the Wirbelwinds might be more useful.

Panzer IV Tank Company
HQ Platoon – 2x Panzer IV – 11pts
Platoon 1 – Three Panzer IV – 16pts
Platoon 2 – Minimum sized Grenadier platoon with two additional Panzerschrecks – 11pts
Platoon 3 – Three Panzer IV – 16pts  
Platoon 4 – 4x Wirbelwind – 9pts

Force Support
Tiger Platoon with two Tiger – 24pts
Puma Patrol with two Puma – 4pts
Wespes Battery with three Wespes – 9pts
=100pts

That makes a nice 100 points list, which is useful to know, but the aim of this is 125 points so I best add some more stuff.

Murder Turtles or not Murder Turtles?

The next new kit I was eyeing up was Hetzer/Marder kit. As you may know, I do have a bit of a soft spot for slightly rubbish tanks and also assault guns, so these fit the bill perfectly. My initial pick was the murder turtle (more commonly known as the Hetzer), however, with the new Hungarian boxset coming out in April, I might be more tempted to do a Hetzer force with them.

Drools…..again

So I think I’ll build them as Marders instead, although I will check to see if it’s possible to build them as both and just swap the tops round or something similar.

Panzer IV Tank Company
HQ Platoon – 2x Panzer IV – 11pts
Platoon 1 – Three Panzer IV – 16pts
Platoon 2 – Minimum sized Grenadier platoon with two additional Panzerschrecks – 11pts
Platoon 3 – Three Panzer IV – 16pts   
Platoon 4 – 4x Wirbelwind – 9pts

Force Support
Tiger Platoon with two Tiger – 24pts
Puma Patrol with two Puma – 4pts
Wespes Battery with three Wespes – 9pts 
Marder Tank Hunter Platoon with four Marders – 16pts
=116ts

Sneaky Halftracks

So nine points left. As I previously said, I have one Panzer IV left, so if I add that into one of the units, it leaves me with three points.
The sdkfz 250 half track is both very cute, and you can get a unit of three recon ones for 3pts, so that seems like a no-brainer.

Cute yet sneaky, a bit like my daughter


Panzer IV Tank Company
HQ Platoon – 2x Panzer IV – 11pts
Platoon 1 – Four Panzer IV – 22pts
Platoon 2 – Minimum sized Grenadier platoon with two additional Panzerschrecks – 11pts
Platoon 3 – Three Panzer IV – 16pts   
Platoon 4 – 4x Wirbelwind – 9pts 

Force Support
Tiger Platoon with two Tiger – 24pts
Puma Patrol with two Puma – 4pts
Wespes Battery with three Wespes – 9pts 
Marder Tank Hunter Platoon with four Marders – 16pts
SkKfz250 Patrol with three Recce SdKfz250 – 3pts
=125pts

Using the list

This list does have its flaws. The individual units of the Panzer IV company are quite brittle due to their small size, and my only heavy armour is the two Tigers. But I do have two good recon units and plenty of mid-level Anti-tank. Mostly importantly though, it does use most of my existing German models and still allow me to use some of the funky new kits.

Another option

The other thing I am considering for this list is using the Rebuilt command card instead of the Kampgruffe command card.

Another cunning plan?

This would mean that if I use the infantry as part of the Panzer IV company, it would have to be armoured panzer grenadiers, but I could save myself five points to spend on other things. However, that would require me to rethink the army so might be an article for another time!

Category: Flames of WarGermansLate WarList DiscussionV4

7 comments

  1. Great article, I love reading this stuff! What about getting another box of Panzer IVs, making 14 in all for a stronger formation of 2 x HQ with three platoons of 4, take the Tigers in formation with a Grenadier platoon as support instead? Use the 16th Pz Div to drop the cost by 6 points and drop the Marders!

  2. I had considered getting more panzer IVs but I just wanted to get shiny new stuff.

    I’ll probably end up getting some more Panzer IVs eventually

  3. The Germans did not any Puma’s in Russia at the time of Bagration for your force support, I believe the 7th Panzer had some on the Baltic coast which is some time after Bagration, 70 odd out the 101 built were in use in Normandy, with Panzer Lehr (25 of), 2nd Panzer (20 odd) and Liebstandarte (16 or so). I am also sceptical about the use of Wirbelwind’s as well, it simply didn’t.

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Article by: Andy Thompson