Today Martin gives us his view of what’s delivers and what underwhelms from the new D-Day German release.
Following on from the D-Day Americans I had high hopes for the D-Day German release and the book like the American one again delivers as a brilliantly produced product with impressive artwork, great writing and really nice details throughout. I really like the linked campaign again in this book.
My top 3 picks for what’s hot!
At number 1 by a massive margin is the Reconnaissance Company formation. With the release of the fabulous new plastic Sd Kfz 250 kit with its multiple variant options these are going to be many peoples choice of German mechanized infantry, they have everything an armoured Panzer Grenadier Company has but with twice as many half tracks, I wont say much more but keep an eye out for Lees article focusing on this formation in the coming weeks.
In at number 2 is the Fallschirmjager platoon these guys have it all big platoons, awesome stats and plenty of equipment but they aren’t cheap a fully equipped platoon will eat up 25% of your points in a standard game which is why I have them in as a support option choice to make the hot or not list.
Finally making number 3 in my list is another company this time out its the Fallschirmjager Stug assault Gun Company with their mix of StuG and StuH assault guns with their FA7 they can handle the most common allied medium tanks in a straight fight and having all the StuH’s grouped into one platoon makes really good use of their bombardment capability and can really threaten infantry occupying buildings from a safe distance. I think these will become the late war equivalent of the Mid War Italian Semovente 75 platoon in Axis armies, but just so much better. Coupled with an integral infantry platoon these a great choice and luckily I already have a company of these ready to go! Add in the Assault Gun Escorts command card and you have a serious attacking force which can also defend well, making a great all around formation which is sure to prove popular to play with.
So what’s underwhelmed me
For me the part of this book that left me cold is the tanks they just made me feel it was more of the same, especially as there are few command cards to associate with them to add flavour. There are updates and changes from Fortress Europe they gain their integrated AA assets but this was all pretty predictable. The Tiger Company is limited to half tracked AA making for an easy kill for your opponent even if you add the armour via the command card option these can be easily taken out by an infantry platoon. The Mobelwagen isn’t for me the most useful addition to the German arsenal for its cost with a reduced FA2 from previous incarnations especially given how difficult it is to shoot down aircraft even with dedicated AA.
We also get the reintroduction of the Jagdpanzer IV as a support choice, but at the same cost as a StuG. To be honest, I’d rather take the StuG; they have better ratings overall with the same armour and gun (Duncan and Fez will be happy though being big fans of the flat panzer).
Well not to stress the point too much more the lack of anything for the 21st Panzer Division was a disappointment until I got to the bottom of the briefing doc and saw the last paragraph stating there would be an additional release of profiles just for the 21st but I suspect this wont balance out the disappointed they weren’t included in this book to start with.
Overall its a very good book not quite as outstanding as the D-Day Americans but if I’m honest I never expected it to be. It continues the upward trend from Battlefront in improving the overall quality and depth of the late war releases and provides plenty of options for all types of gamer.