Polishing up my Poles

Now that the new Warsaw Pact book has landed, I thought I would take a look and see what they can add to my Polish army, and what changes that would mean for my army list.

Poor Relation

I will be honest up front; the Poles have come off poorly from the new Warsaw Pact book. I had high hopes for this book; I had visions of the famous Polish Naval Infantry riding round in their TOPAS 2 transports and adding an entire new string of options to the Polish army, but alas, it’s not to be.

MIA

The Poles get a grand total of three new units, and one new formation, so it’s going to be a short article, but I’m here now, so I might as well take a look at them. Although full disclosure, these are exactly the same units that the East Germans and Czechoslovakians get, so if you’ve already read the articles about them, you will already know the basics.

Baseline T-55s

Not content with having the T55AM2 be the worst tank in the Warsaw Pact, Battlefront has decided we should now have the option of the baseline T-55s for when you want some even cheaper tanks for more tank spam. I seriously doubt this is something anyone wanted or asked for.

Now as you may be aware from my other articles, I am a big fan of crap tanks, but I have to draw the line somewhere and, frankly, the baseline T-55 just isn’t worth it; you could take a unit of 5 baseline T-55s as the cheapest tank option in the army, but for just one point more you can get a unit of 5 T-55AM2s with more front armour and a laser range finder. That’s not 1 point more each-it’s 1 point more for the entire unit. I can’t think of any situation when I would choose the base line T-55 over the T-55AM2; if I wanted to save a couple of points, I would just shave them off elsewhere.

Verdict – pointless

SU-22 Fitter

Now this is something I have personally been wanting for a while, a new air support option for the Warsaw Pact.

*insert airplane noises*

The Fitter is a nice and cheap air support option; 2 of them is less than half the cost of 2 SU-25 Frogfeet, (I’m not getting into the argument of what you call the multiple of a Frogfoot again,) although that doesn’t include the cost of the Kh-25 air-ground missiles. If you want those missiles, it will double to cost of the unit and replace the 240mm rockets. Now I know some people, (hi Lee,) think you should keep in basic with the 240mm rockets and wreak havoc on top armour, but I’m always dubious about flying artillery as you have to roll to have the planes turn up and then roll to range in, so I could be quite tempted by the Kh-25 missiles. Now that doesn’t make it much cheaper than the Frogfeet, but it sure looks a lot cooler.

Verdict – Shiny

T-72B

The T-27B is the poster boy of the new book-it’s literally on all the advertising material.

The soviet union, finally giving their friends nice things

The B stands for better, because it’s better than the T-72M in many ways. I assume, therefore, the M stands for mediocre. The T-72B has more armour, ERA special rule, a bigger boom than the M, and also for a slight additional cost, the ability to fire missiles.

Three of them are more the double the cost of 3 T-72Ms, but because of the way Battlefront costs the Warsaw Pact tanks, 5 of them with missiles is about the same cost as 8 T-72Ms, so the more you get the better the value becomes.
You can either take them in a formation of their own or as the third platoon in a T-72M formation.

So, the big question you all want to know the answer to: which is better overall: the T-72B or the T-72M? Quite honestly, I’m not sure. The B is clearly the better tank, but is it worth the points increase? I really am on the fence. The increased front armour means you can take a hit from an M1A1 and still get a save, ERA mean you get an excellent tank for assaulting infantry, and the bump in AT is just the icing on the cake. But the M is still cheaper and better for fielding en masse, so ultimately, it’s the classic choice of quantity or quality?

Not that you actually need to choose as you could just field a unit of Bs as the third box in an M formation, or maybe even as black box support for a T-55AM2 Formation.

Verdict – Tempting

I searched on google for images of “tempting” and this was the most family appropriate one

Putting it all together

Right then, let’s look at adding in some of the new stuff to one of my old Polish army lists and see how we get on.
The old 105 point list is

T-72M Battalion – 52pts
BHQ – T-72M – 3pts
4x T-72M – 12pts
4x T-72M – 12pts
4x T-72M – 12pts
BMP – 1 Motor Rifle company (minimum size) – 7pts
4x BDRM – 2 – 2pts
4x ZSU 23-4 – 4pts
T-55AM2 Battalion – 31pts
BHQ – T-55AM2 – 1pts
5x T-55AM2 – 6pts
5x T-55AM2 – 6pts
5x T-55AM2 – 6pts
Wheeled Motor Rifle company (Minimum size) + 2x Spigot, +Grail AA missile – 10pts
4x BMP-1 Scout – 5pts
4x Gaskin – 2pts
Support – 17pts
6x DANA -14 pts
BMP – 1 OP – 1pt
3x Spandrel – 2pts
Total = 105pts

The things I’m looking to add are the T-72B and the Fitters; there doesn’t seem to be any point adding in the base line T-55s.

So, my new list now looks like this

T-72M battalion – 72pts
T-72M BHQ – 3pts
5x T-72M – 16pts
5x T-72M – 16pts
4x T-72B – 21pts
4x ZSU-234 – 4pts
4x BDRM – 2pts
Wheeled Motor Rifle company – 5pts
1x Spigot – 2pts
Grail AA – 1pts
4x Gaskin – 2pts
Support – 33pts
6x DANA – 14pts
Ops – 1pts
6x Fitters – 9pts
6x Air/ground missile – 9pts
Total = 105pts

At first, I did try keeping the T-55AM2 formation in there, but I just couldn’t get the points to work out without the T-72 units being tiny and hardly any support, so I just dropped them all in favour of some funky looking aircraft. I might look into building a pure T-72B formation, but that will be an article for another day. Hopefully my lack of numbers is made up for by the survivability of the T-72Bs. The list probably does need more work, but this is a rough back of an envelope list to give you an idea of how it all adds up.

Back of an envelop calculations

Final Thoughts

The Poles did come off the worst in the new Warsaw pact book; we got a cool aircraft, an interesting tank and a piece of junk-it’s all very disappointing. As I mentioned at the start, I had high hopes for some naval infantry and also possibly a 4th nation – maybe Bulgaria with their T-62s, so whilst it’s nice to have new stuff, it does feel like this is something that Battlefront just knocked out quickly to keep people quiet, and with North Africa being a bit of a disappointment, let’s hope whatever the next book is it contains some more interesting options.

Category: List DiscussionPolishTeam YankeeWarsaw PactWW3

4 comments

  1. Besides the new vehicles I haven’t seen any preview articles with details regarding the mot-rifles of the three pact countries.
    Do they at least also get the option for the improved rpgs?

  2. Thanks for the info.
    At least I don’t have to change my infantry tactics as I seldom encounter the latest tank models.
    But I’m still on the fence whether to depart from MSU-Volksarmee with the new book.

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Article by: Andy Thompson