– my painting queue is not quite that bad but it’s getting close
Today, Duncan looks at how to begin collecting a force for, and using, games as an incentive to build and paint your Team Yankee armies.
Hi Duncan here again and today I’m looking at how I’m going to create my Soviet list for Team Yankee and use games to help me get my @rse in gear and get everything painted.
Start at the beginning…
It all began with a single box of T72s just before Christmas… just a single box given to me by my mate, and regular opponent in all things Flames of War, Luke. He was already on the Team Yankee train since the release of Iron Maiden in September and I was still being my usual decisive self; ‘umming’ and ‘ahhing’ over factions and specifics and waiting for that spark of inspiration. Apparently all the spark I needed was a lovely box of T72s.
The T72 surely the mainstay of a Soviet Division?
Of course I settled on the Soviet forces – to be specific the 10th Guards Tank Ural-L’vov Volunteer Division part of the 3rd Strike Army HQ’d in Magdeburg and directly opposing the British Army of the Rhine. In the run up to Christmas, I’m not going to lie, mistakes were made and come the New Year I had a mountain of plastic sat in my gaming cupboard – neatly ordered – but no closer to getting on the table top than when they were shipped to me. Something had to be done.
I was suffering from the ‘Quality of Quantity’ and simply didn’t know where to start – what did I assemble and paint first? 24 T72s is a daunting amount of green and 23 bases of infantry is likewise a numbing amount of brown; what was to be done? Inspiration again – Escalation.
Always a good thing in a cold war scenario…
I floated my idea past Luke and he was on board as was also struggle to gather his thoughts on organising what to do when. The idea is an oldie, but a goodie – get gaming quickly and get inspired that way via an escalation of points every time you play.
We agreed that our ultimate aim was to get armies of 100pts painted and gaming ASAP and to that end we agreed that we would break this down into the following chunks:
- 50pts initial force (no air units allowed) – Game 1
- +15pts (Total of 65pts) Game 2
- + 10pts (Total of 75pts) Game 3
- + 15pts (Total of 90pts) Game 4
- +10pts (Total of 100pts) Game 5
So the first milestone to achieve to get to a game was to get a mere 50pts assembled and painted, we also agreed that air units would be kept till later on as they might be either overpowering or underwhelming and neither would make the experience a positive one.
Thematically it should also allowed us to create a narrative around the games; for example, I’m sure that we will play our first game and if I somehow win then we might play the Bridgehead scenario or Counter Attack next or if the British win then maybe the next game will be a Fighting Withdrawal as they straighten their line with their adjacent divisions.
The timing between games will allow us to compile reinforcements to our initial forces as reverses arrive and success is reinforced and defeat is supplemented. Given the points values this should be an easily manageable amount of figures rather than trying to grind our way through a tonne of kit and getting demotivated.
The Starting Point
So what do our starting forces look like?
Chieftain vs. T72 – this looks decidedly one sided
17th/21st Lancers Battlegroup – 31pts
1 x HQ Chieftain Stillbrew
2 x Chieftain
2 x Chieftain
Scorpion Recce Troop – 4pts
4 x Scorpion
FV432 Mechanised Platoon – 9pts
4 x GPMG teams with 66mm AT
3 x Carl Gustav AT teams
1 x 2” Mortar team
2 x Milan missile teams
5 x FV432
Swingfire Guided Weapons Troop – 6pts
3 x Swingfire
Total – 50pts
BMP-2 or not to BMP-2 that is the question?
248th Guards “Unechskiy” Motor-Rifle Battalion – 27pts
1 x AK74 Team
1 x BMP-1
7 x AK74 Teams with RPG-18 anti-tank
6 x RPG-7 anti-tank teams
2 x PKM LMG teams
9 x BMP-2
4 x AK74 Teams with RPG-18 anti-tank
3 x RPG-7 anti-tank teams
4 x BMP-2
T72 Tank Company – 22pts
5 x T72
Total – 49pts
So both sides have elements that are very fragile (Note to self – “Well d’uh!) at 50pts, so I suspect that the terrain will need to provide a reasonable amount of cover to make sure that those short tank and infantry platoons aren’t making Last Stand checks in Turn 1.
My engine is running now for getting these Soviets on to the table top and my mind is already running over what to for my next 15(16)pts… I think I need some more BMPs…
Until next time what is motivating you to get the plastic/resin mountain down and models on the table?