Fez’s First Frothing Foray on BTA – BTA Mid War One Dayer AAR

Hello all!
Fez-man here, excited to join the Breakthrough Assault team. I’ve been playing Flames of War tournaments for just over a year, but have been a hobbyist for many more, working for Games Workshop for a few years, and I’m also Chairman of the Guildford Games Club.

For my first post, I’ll be looking at the recent Breakthrough Assault One Dayer – Mid War, that I attended with my British Infantry Tank Company.

First, a quick look at the Venue, LvlUp Gaming in Bournemouth.

Not the largest selection, but at least its a start!

Fridge full of cold drinks and chocolate!
Nice selection of ranges

The shop has only just opened, but already has a great start – the owners and staff seem lovely, and made all feel at home – I wish I had taken the time to talk to them more, but was slightly tired after a night of painting (more on that in a bit)

The main playing area is in the basement, which although it did heat up, and a bit cramped at times, was pleasant enough.

 Why was I so tired? Well, the night before the tournament my army looked like this:

Not quite the impression I was hoping to make. Part of the appeal to each tournament is to motivate me to paint armies, and as such I’ve taken a different one to each tournament this year. After a few more hours effort, mainly neat basecoats and washes, I was getting closer

Experimented with different washes, settled on good old sepia!

 Another couple of hours, and yet another midnight decal session gave me an army that wasn’t totally rubbish looking at about 2am – Still need to go back and add extra markings on the Matildas, as they are rather bland – until I’ve done this I can’t rightfully ‘score’ these on my hobby pledge.

So…Many….Tanks
The list its self was fuelled by one simple idea – to have a swarm of Matildas that weren’t soviet for once!

This came about due to watching the Japanese Cartoon show ‘Girls und Panzer’, which featured a platoon of Matilda on its first episode

Add the fact I had easy army open on my laptop, and Zvesda make a plastic kit for less than £3, I had a fun mid-war list! I’ll be the first to admit that its not designed to be competitive, but at least I’ll have more tanks than the other guy for once! The aim was to smoke/ repeat bombard stuff that could hurt me, then move in and swarm them with top armour 2 tanks. I knew I would be relying on the RAF to come to the rescue, and really should have taken bombs, but a Cannon-Hurri just looks too awesome to leave at home.

I apologise in advance for the lack of photo’s, I tried to use my phone to create a time lapse, but it just killed the battery and left me waiting for it to charge again..

Game one – Fighting Withdrawal against Toby with his German Grenadier Company

This one has no pictures, as my camera died and deleted them all 🙁
Not much to say about this, other than driving Matildas into dug in-88’s, infantry guns, nebs, AT guns and Brumbars isn’t my idea of fun. Oh, and don’t forget the cannon-armed stukas.

Long story short, I lost 1-6. Sometimes you get those games where they’ve got scissors, and you find your army is just so much paper to them!

Lessons learnt – don’t attack piecemeal, if you’re going to press a flank, press it with everything you have.

Game two – Winner Dave and his Soviet heavy tanks, dust up

Not much to say about this game, other than I’m sure Dave would have won if he wasn’t half asleep!
The only things in my list that can scratch his KV-1’s were my sporadic Hurricane and 25 pounders. Thats it. Not a lot of hope really. Luckily for me, Dave got fixated by the amount of Matildas I put into reserve, allowing me to run my reccie carriers and a platoon of tanks towards the objective that was only defended by his armoured cars. By the time he realised I could threaten his objective, his KV-1’s were too slow to get back and stop me catching it. My heart was in my mouth when his reserve Matildas turned up and shot at mine in the rear armour, by my saves kept everything on the board to get the 6-1 win.

So many BIG Tanks
My artie and infantry holed up on the objectives – still took 3 turns to dig in!

Lessons learnt:
The hill rules can be mis-interpreted depending on who you play with, bases on models and scenery should be ignored for true line of sight, Dave and I can have a pointed friendly debate over rules and the entire room think its an argument, and I was using second edition fighter interception rules!

Game Three – Cauldron – Dave Palmer – Hungarians


I played Dave at the last one Breakthrough Assault one dayer-late war tournament, we seem fated to meet at game three. This time he was defending with his Hungarian infantry, however I got extremely lucky with my random placement, and managed to have my 25 pounders at the back of the board, and the three platoons of Matildas on the right flank in cover, ready to roll up the flank.

Shhh! We’re hiding…
So many stands of infantry…
Panzer Vor – I mean, forward for king and country boys!

It took a couple of turns, but over time I managed to slowly pin and then kill his AT Guns, and then the artillery, allowing me to push onto the objective and drive the infantry back.

Nimrods, apparently have tree magnets.

I took too long really, meaning that his delayed reserves started to turn up. Luckily his Nimrod AA tanks, ready to threaten my 25 pounders, ran straight into the woods and double bogged. I should have obliterated these with direct fire, but instead used the guns to help push home the main attack, wanting to get the 6-1 capture win.

Then his armoured cars and panzer IV’s turned up, and slowly tore my 25s apart, along with the platoon of Matildas I dispatched to try and rescue them, meaning that when I finally captured the objective it was a 4-3.

Lessons learnt: Don’t delay, if you need to push, push! Also, wipe out the easy target while its easy!

Despite the distance for me to drive, I find the one dayers great fun, and not as draining as the weekend affairs. As people aren’t investing two days into it, a bad game doesn’t put people in foul mood, meaning that the atmosphere is upbeat throughout the day.

As I can’t make both days at warfare, my next comp is most likely going to be Breakthrough Assault III, with an ‘early-late war’. I’m thinking of taking the more competitive 29th Infantry division, and I hope to see you there!

Thanks for reading,

Fez

Category: AARBreakthrough Assault TournamentBritishMid WarTournament

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Article by: Mark Goddard