Late War at 1420pts – The Experts View

Hello All

You may remember I did a post of Corrivalry being 1420pts and the challenge list building was going to be at that points level. Looking back I felt there was more to talk about the topic and I wanted to do a much bigger post on the subject. So I decide to get the view of four top players (along with myself and Adam) on what lists they think would be good at 1420pts, why they think it’s good and what they would worry about facing with the list. Here is their responses.

BillWilcoxBill Wilcox- Competitive tournament list building at 1420 points is challenging, and has limitations not found at higher points levels.  For a list to be truly tournament-capable, it needs to be able to handle as many situations as it can while suffering few platoon losses.  Dealing with multiple different scenarios, diverse opponent list selections, and varying densities of terrain is always challenging and is made even more so when you have fewer points to flesh out your force.  Granted, your opponent also has fewer points at their disposal, but that doesn’t change the fact that you need to be ready to face pretty much everything to win a big event.

I personally think that most tank lists suffer at these lower point levels.  Tank lists typically are no more than six platoons, and really do need specific tools to get the job done.  Face it, attacking is always harder than defending, and you really do need the ability to concentrate your force to break through an opposing defense.  Losses need to be at a minimum because few tournaments are won with bunches of 4-3 (or even 5-2) games.  That being said, I am pretty much incapable of playing the sit, fart, and range in force that is so prevalent in tournaments these days.  I can defend, but I don’t enjoy it, so would always rather attack.  The challenge then is to recreate a fast-attack force at fewer points without giving up mobility.

There are several good options out there, but two in particular popped out for me (partially because they both also work very well at higher point values).

The first is the British 51st Rifle Company from Overlord.

51st 1420

This is an Always attack force with lots of mobility and decent artillery support.  You can play this as 8, 9, 10, or 12 platoons.  I like 10 (change 2 AVREs in each of the breaching groups to flail tanks resulting in two platoons for each group containing 4 flails and 2 AVREs).  You have lots of AT 10 to fend off medium tank hoards (if any), a good high AT template to help against the rare heavy or dig out opposing artillery, 2 smoke templates, 3 tank platoons (excluding the AVREs) to help you work those important flank shots, recon, veteran infantry for the assault if needed (only count on one round since they are RV), and 15 flame shots from tanks that are pretty much invulnerable from the front to 95% of the weapons that you’ll face.  There’s tweaking that can be done to add in an AOP if you’d like to give your artillery a bit more of a threat bubble.

The second list is the Canadian Rifle Company from Market Garden.

canadian 1420pras

These guys are all CV, and you get 6 platoons (trading the AVREs for a flail), and everything is mounted except for your HQ.  They are always attack, night attacking, with spearheading CV infantry mounted in tanks.  2 good tank platoons with 2 fireflies that can sit back with SIF, recon, and lots of 6-pdrs help if you have to defend against tanks or face lots Pumas, US TDs, other lighter vehicles, or even dig out infantry since these are the late variant.  You can always swap the AT guns for arty, or drop 2 of them to help beef up something else.

I think that each of these could work quite nicely at an event like Corrvialry or the UKGT or US Nationals.  Both are survivable, have the tools to take on all-comers, and are fun to play.

UK-Masters-13Roger Whittam- For the 2016 season of late war events Battlefront has announced the new points total as 1420 points, much lower than many of us are now used to and has meant frantic changes for many of us and old established lists as suddenly you cannot afford all of the toys you are used to.

During 2015 season I used the Reluctant Trained version of the 512 Schwere Panzerjager Kompanie from the Bridge at Remagen, although I never won an event, I always finished in the top quarter and it proved a nightmare to many opponents and fun to play with. Through 2015 the list I took evolved though from the original list with 2 units of Volksturm to the final incarnation with Panzer grenadiers and Pak 40s instead. Yes the Volksurm are cheap and cheerful and work but I was losing them too often and although winning the games it was 4-3 whereas the later format with Veteran Panzer Grenadiers and Pak 40 Light Artillery worked much better winning by a better margin.

So it has come to see if I can trim it back and still come up with a competitive list. My first thought was to fall back on the Volksturm to save on points but I just wasn’t happy with the balance. What was certain was having to drop back from 8 platoons to 6 for a start and after much juggling I finally came up with a list I was happy with. 3 Jadgtigers, 2 units of infantry with half tracks, 2 Ostwinds, 2 88s and Nebs. Sadly I had to drop the Pak 40s to keep it as 6 platoons but the Jadgtigers should be able to do the work of the Pak40s still on the smaller points total. In the missions with only half on table you could start with the 2 units of infantry on table and the 88s along with the 2 command Jadgtigers. The second infantry platoon is critical as it prevents the fast moving medium armour from getting flank shots on your precious heavy armour. Again in the mobile battle games you could start with the 88s, Nebs, Veteran infantry with half tracks on table along with the command Jadgtigers which still left a good mobile force to come on with of the Panzer Scouts in half tracks, Ostwinds and Jadgtiger.roger1

I was happy with this and then a friend came to me with a question about the 512 as he knew I used it all of last year. Admittedly his version was different and has the Volksturm in there but working on the upcoming Corrivalry event had taken the light anti air option instead of the 88s. Now this is something I had never considered, mainly because I don’t own 8 2cm Flak 38’s!

The concept of the list still works and the 8 2cm AA guns for basically the same points gives greater durability against infantry hordes with the high rate of fire. (To squeeze these in I have had to downgrade from 2 Ostwinds to 2 Wirblewinds instead) The AT13 of the 88s does not matter so much as you have the 3 Jadgtigers to deal with the heavy armour and the Panzerfaust armed infantry should stop medium armour and was the same arguement as to why I dropped the Pak40s in the end. Stays as 6 platoons and in the half on games can take either the 8 Flak 38s instead of the 88s when facing AOPs or air power and take the 3rd Jadgtiger instead to back up the infantry. Same concept in the Mobile battles games.roger2

So they we have it, option 1 is fully finished and ready to roll and I have just ordered the 8 Flak38s and they are jumping to the head of the painting queue ready for the new season.

12390960_10156313105220273_8812311705945630960_nBen Davy- This is a list I have played around with at different points values for a while now. At higher points the list in my mind would struggle as it lacks high end AT and staying power, but dropping down to 1420pts seems to have solved a few of these problems and the list doesn’t feel much weaker for it.

A common misconception is that TDs are only useful against tanks. Of course TDs are indeed very good against tanks (as is their primary role), they are still adequate at taking on infantry. Back when I was running US infantry I would use my TDs in most games to target Gun Teams and Infantry to clear an objective for my infantry to assault. I’m now just expanding this idea into a complete force.

Now you may ask why the 644th and not Task Force Alpha, or either of the Veteran TD lists? Well simply put I wanted three mobile TD platoons (something the Veteran list struggles with) and I’m not worried about auto attacking. In fact I think defending against tank lists is probably the better option (outside of mobile battles). This means in missions with an ambush you can have 4 platoons in either ambush or TD ambush which makes it a hard force to tangle with as nothing is deployed on the table that counts. This should give you a tactical edge that if used right should mean you’ll win most games.

td 1420pts

So lets looks at how I would use the list. On defence, as I said above, this list really messes with the head of your opponent. Having three mobile TD platoons will cause them to be cautious, maybe even move up slow and it’ll force them to use their recon to try and stop your ambushes, something that is hard when there could be 4 of them. When you drop your alpha strike, it could (and probably should) be 24 shots with AT 12 and FP 3+, anything weaker than a Panther needs to worry about that! Or alternatively you could drop and move onto the flanks of the enemy tanks with 12 shots. There is a few ways to play this depending on the opponent, but I would always drop my ambushes at short range (within 16 inches) to maximise effectiveness. I would probably also deploy the mortars so you have a smoke template to help protect the M10’s which they have deployed, they can effectively go into ambush if you want so your opponent has nothing really worth shooting at.

On the attack against infantry your alpha strike is critical. You will want to spend a turn/two getting into position in order to drop the TD’s into terrain (probably a wheat field or a wood), Then left GTG with the recon and kill what ever the biggest threat is (probably artillery or AT guns). Once that is done you shoot up the infantry to a point where the Stuarts can comfortably charge them and push them off the objective. The AA keeps AOPs away and the mortars mostly drops smoke (until the treats to the TDs are gone) and then proceed to bombard the objective. It is worth pointing out here that Lessons From The Front says that an AOP using column does not affect a TD platoon deploying, so you don’t need to fear then for deployment purposes.

The biggest weakness to this list are threefold:

  1. Medium tank hordes, mostly T-34’s, Matildas or Lees. The soviets will be packing 21+ tanks and so you need to ambush at the right time and in a way that you are only facing on company of tanks at a time. This is where the smoke template will be critical.
  2. Mobile mission on the defense. You will have two platoons on the table and so will be vulnerable to being rushed and killed before your support turns up. Even if you get support easily you need to hit hard and hit fast or you have to face the full force of the enemy army in one go on the objectives.
  3. Winning 6-1 is hard. In Bill’s write up he says if you want to win a tournament you need to win 6-1 most of the time and he is right. This list is made up of confident trained FA 4 tanks, thats a winning combo in Early War but not Late War. You do have the advantage of the TD ambush keeping you safe while you get into position but if the ambush doesn’t come off you have little to protect you. But the risk of missing is why I have gone for the trained list and not the veteran list. I want three platoons of TDs so if one platoon misses I have two more to shot and the odds on 24 shots missing is low. I would recommend always ambushing with all three platoons at the same time to maxiums the out put and hopefully make sure nothing can shot back that turn.

I think this list has the tools to work at a tournament, 8 platoons, 2 platoons of recon, 4 tank platoons (3 of which are TDs), smoke and AA covers almost all the bases (I would have liked a Veteran Armoured Rifle Platoon but you can’t have it all). I’m seriously thinking of taking it to the GT.

UK-Masters-12Robin– One of the options I’m looking at is the Soviet T34 Horde. Good old Red army T34s en mass. 1420 points although far from my favourite does offer some of the lesser armies more of a chance IMO. I think you are less likely to have a lot of big German Cats. I imagine there will be one or two but I think at 1420 points the German Big Cat can no longer cover the whole board. I also think Air support is less likely because of the lack of big Cats and also players will be needing the points to get platoon numbers up.

So as I’m not a Sit & Stare Digger type player, I like to get stuck in, am fairly aggressive and if I’m going to lose I don’t want it to be because I just reacted to somebody else’s tune. The list below has 31 no nonsense get stuck in from the off tanks. I could have gone Matildas and whilst better in hand to hand combat, they lack the speed, and extra AT of the T34. I wil move my T34s right up into the face of any enemy infantry platoons (2″ away)thus negating any air support, and making it difficult to bombard with artillery as only 2″ away. Once there they will take out any opposing AT guns or Artillery, whichever is the imminent theat. Once that is done they will sit and blast the infantry until the infantry are weakened enough to be run over. As for opposing Tanks these will be peppered by Heavy Mortars, ZIS 3s and the T34s. If Big Cats then a large contingent of the T34s will look to use there speed and get behind the flanks. Its a great army against infantry and should be fairly competitive against most tank companies simply because of numbers. The army is from Desperate Measures and has 6 platoons including 31 T34s in 3 platoons, Spetsnaz with a Faust just in case I need a little help against a Tiger, Heavy Mortars with a FP of 3 and finally 100 points worth of ZIS 3s.
sov
Another decent Soviet option, would be the Light Assault Gun Co. with 4 platoons of 4 SU122 Breakthrough Guns for dealing with AT guns, Artillery and Infantry, 122mm and 152mm Artillery to take out any big Cats. Recon and AA to bring it up to 8 Platoons. This would be very strong v Infantry opposition and opposing light tanks. V any big cats you have 4 x small platoons of SU122s to try and get onto a Cats flank if the Artillery are having a bad day.

sovv

11231684_10153202261009247_677389590987713944_nAdam–  So I’ve been asked to consider a few lists which I think might be workable under the new 1420 meta – I’ll explain my reasoning behind some of the ideas with these lists as I go, so you can see my thought process’s.

Lapin Sota Jӓӓkӓrikomppania

So this is a slightly odd ball list I will happily say, but I think it can be one of the few lists which is equally able to attack and defend – once again due to the hero that is Lorni Torni. 1420 also helps mitigate the Finn’s main drawback – lack of AT – even with huge Russian hoards, we’re unlikely to have vast numbers of any other tank show up, so the limited AT assets are no longer quite the same drawback as before. The basic set up is Lorni’s crazy taxi for attack, with some T34’s and pak 40’s for defence. The one gimmick lorni has is that as the attacker you can mount his platoon (if upgraded to recon) on 3 armoured cars, zip forward with their recce move, and disembark on turn one – this does one of two things, either you have a giant infantry blob (rerolling skill tests and being GtG even if moving) up to 18 inches forward off the get go – or your opponent has to deploy in a very odd way to minimise this happening. The T34’s are again a great shout as they can give you that defensive edge with FA7 and AT12, they’re not a bad unit at all, and alongside them you have some Pak40’s to back up the infantry (and some arty too) alternatively play super competitive – drop the arty and take a platoon pf panzer 4’s – that’s a nice surprise for any attack infantry force!adam finn

German Panzers (Fortress Italy)

My great love – is this list – and I’ve spent a lot of time trying to figure out a decent way to play them in this brave new world! This time I’ve had to break one of my personal rules – 3 Panzer iv platoons – I hate this, but needs must! The HQ is the traditional 2 Panzer iv’s, then 3 Panzer iv’s – I’ve taken Panthers – as I love them so much – the FA10 will mean they can sit off and shoot – I’m still expecting to see Jumbo’s so having these guys out there means they have to behave themselves – and most 7th armour list etc seem to be lacking the number of Easy 8’s I’ve played before. I also have the 4 Semovente 105/25 – just to worry infantry and some 8-rads to lift GtG – on the down side though I have no AA or smoke – but that’s this new points value!adam italy

Anyway that’s my rambling ideas on it!

A big thank you to Bill, Robin and Roger for giving up their time to chat about the lists. They have given us a good mix of forces to chat about and a lot of thoughts about how to make a good list.

I hope you enjoyed this post, in a week or two we will get some of the guys to put their money where their mouth is and run us through their armies for Corrivalry; so keep an eye out for that.

Until next time.

Ben

Category: BritishFinnishFlames of WarGermansLate WarSovietsUS

8 comments

  1. Interesting to see Bill has the exact opposite idea as I do. To me a well-designed tank list is going to be very competitive at 1420 if played well. That said its harder to design a good tank list at 1420, and harder to play such a small list well. However, 1420 makes the board more open, more space to maneuver and means weaker defensive forces as you still have to defend 2-3 objectives spaced just as far apart. low points also means more time to shell defending units before a final assault.

    I will say Night attacking or crocodile heavy lists at 1420 are also going to be extremely effective.

    1. I agree Phil, I think Tank lists can been very good at this points level. I have been playing Desert Rats at 1420pts and their speed has won me games, you just need to attack where they are weak and at 1420pts there will be weaknesses in the line.

  2. I myself would go for my personal favorite: Romanian Battalion Puscasi. At 1420 this list can really shine with:

    HQ 2x Rifle + 2x Schrecks
    Platoon 1 9x Rifle/MG
    Platoon 2 9x Rifle/MG
    Platoon 3 4x 81mm mortar
    Platoon 4 9x 47mm gun (AT 8, RoF 3)
    Platoon 5 4x Cavalry recce
    Platoon 6 4x Heer Pz IV
    Platoon 7 6x Pak40 + transports
    Platoon 8 3x 2cm AA

    33% to get veteran ratings.

    1. I think you have a good list there Reksio. Worry who you’ll dig out infantry. Might it be an idea to look at Soviet Romanians and KV-8s?

      1. To be honest it is not so difficult with so many guns. In fact, I love attacking infantry with it. All you have to do is shoot support (mainly template weapons), roll up the guns, lift gtg with the cavalry and fire away!

  3. Cheers Nobby
    Im only included because of my great looks, wit and charming personality. Already altered my list a bit. Now using the Red Army Tankovy from Red Bear with 21 T34s and 10 Grants. Alternate list has 4 SU100s LOL
    xxx

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Article by: Mark Goddard