Today, Mark kicks off a week looking at the ‘poor bloody infantry’ and gives us his thoughts on forming square and amassing the ranks of British Infantry to hold off the Soviet horde.
Like many people I have been hugely excited about the new ‘Iron Maiden’ book. For me it isn’t the cool new toys, or the fact that I am a Brit (well it helps); but because this book really mixes up the Meta and adds tons of different builds.
Now don’t get me wrong; the ‘Leopard’ book was good with viable infantry, MBT and light tank options. However ‘Iron Maiden’ takes it a step further. It’s four formation options, all drawing from a common force card, lends itself to a multi-formation force; although a mass of Chieftains is also an interesting choice (Lee will be looking at massed Chieftains in a future article).
At first I got fixated on the new Chieftain. With Stillbrew, it is cheap, capable and has a massive gun. While it lacks survivability vs T72s, it is a ‘Vet’ so has a 5+ to hit if you use cover well.
However the more I read the more I have started to think that Infantry and Milan Anti-Tank Guided Weapons (ATGW) is where it is at. The number of AT21 Milan shots you can kick out at 100 pts is quite frankly staggering. Additionally they all get a 3+ save! Okay many Soviet MBTs have ‘Brutal’ guns, however its still a 1/3 chance of saving. Far better than your expensive Chieftain when hit by a AT22 gun.
The Mighty Milan – sadly the thermal sight is a little too late for Iron Maiden in UK service
Again I was initially drawn to the Mech Inf and dismissed the Airborne options as a bit of a gimmick. However, I fear I was rather rash. The more I ponder, the better they seem.
Now I stress that I don’t think that the ability to land behind enemy lines is really something that useful except in a very situational environment; i.e. maybe when attacking in ‘Breakthrough’ (even then the speed of unit in TY makes this rather dodgy). The ability lies in the fact that at 7 pts you get 3 x AT21 Milans and 4 x GPMG/LAW teams and a 2″ Mortar. That’s less than 1 pt a team!
Additionally it gets you access to one of my favourite units the Airmobile Milan Platoon, with a staggering 8 Milan posts for 11pts.
We shall ride into battle and these shall be our steads
Starting with that as a basis, I then added in a Mech Inf formation, allowing me some harder hitting infantry with 2 x Mech platoons with the ‘cheeky’ Carl Gustav, which keeps MBTs honest during assaults. You also get a smaller Milan Platoon and more Milan goodness in the form of Spartan MCT.
Now while you could go all infantry (easily getting 2 more mech inf platoons), I decided to throw in 3 x Chieftains with Stillbrew as a nice ambush or reserve unit (for mopping up!). Support is in the form of what I view as a no-brainer, 4 x Rapier and a flight of 4 x Harriers which keeps those BMP hordes at bay. Scorpions were thrown in for the deployment move and another platoon of Airmobile Infantry as, lets face it, they are such good value. Finally an OP is there for good measure to make the most of those Harriers.
Here is the list in full.
Airmobile Pltn (Full)
Airmobile Pltn (Full)
Airmobile Milan Pltn (Full)
Mech Inf Formation
Mech Inf Pltn with Milans (Full)
Mech Inf Pltn with Milan (Full)
4 x Spartan MCT
Milan Pltn (Full)
3 x Chieftains with Stillbrew Armour
4 x Harriers
4 x Rapier
4 x Scorpions
Airmobile Pltn (short)
That’s 12 platoons, which makes it rather tasty in defence with 6 platoons on. What’s amazing is that it can put down 28 AT21 Milans as well as 6 AT22 FP2+ shots and a massively scary template from the Harriers.
On the down side you have to remember that Milans can be pinned but with a couple of commanders around that should help to keep them firing.
Deep Reserves will mean that I will have to give up the helo-lift option on some of my Airmobile Platoons’ transports but that’s no great loss as I doubt ill be deploying all 3 anyway. That still allows me to do a late game air assault if the need takes me. Now I just have to choose between the Chieftains or Harriers in deep reserves. This will be mission dependent depending on the amount of AA and the number of BMPs (and, by the sound of it, T-55s next year) which require a pie plate.
Milans but on tracks
Attacking will be a bit harder but you have to remember you still have a huge amount of fire power vs an army which will often be half on with deep reserves. Also that Mech Inf packs a punch with excellent assault ratings. I’ll admit that the lack of smoke may hurt, I may reduce the Scorpions to 2 in order to get some Mortars….
Well there you go, a rather different style of army, brutal on the defence and respectable on the attack. It is rather expensive to buy with all those Lynxs however given how many times I will use them I think I will just get 4.
Please let me know if you have any thoughts.
Bye for now….