The Road to the ETC – Wales & England

Good morning, Mark here, this time to introduce a some content from the Captain of Team Wales, Roger Whittam and the England coach – Mike Klaka, first off lets look at the ETC as an event, with a run down of how it works from Roger,

ETC 2016 Athens

2016, an Olympic year and this year the ETC is being hosted in Athens at the Tae Kwon Do Olympic Stadium over Friday 5th through until the 7th of August. The ETC is a team event and only 1 team from each country allowed and represents some of the hardest fought series of 6 games you will ever encounter.

Full details of the event can be found here www.warhammer.org.uk/phpBB/viewforum.php?f=67

Key to the success or failure of any team is down to the match ups and getting this right.

Here is a breakdown of the match ups between teams:

The players will be matched up using the following system:

1. Team A puts up one if its 6 armies, Team B does the same.

2. Team A puts up two armies against the one put up by Team B, Team B does the same.

3. Team A chooses one of the two armies put up by Team B to be played against the army first put up by team A and determines one pair, Team B does the same.

4. The armies that did not get chosen return to the team pool.

5. Team A puts up one if its 4 remaining armies, Team B does the same.

6. Team A puts up two armies against the one put up by Team B, Team B does the same.

7. Team A chooses one of the two armies put up by Team B to be played against the army first put up by team A and determines one pair, Team B does the same.

8. The army of Team A that did not get chosen by team B plays against the last army remaining in the pool of Team B. The army of Team B that did not get chosen by team A plays against the last army remaining in the pool of Team A.

9. The table for each pairing will be randomly drawn.

 

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This year the event is mid war and 1650pts and there are restrictions on the exact composition of each team:

  • 2 Infantry Companies
  • 2 Mechanized Companies
  • 2 Tank Companies

In each company type, the two armies may not be from the same nationality.There are also 2 games per day and 3 hours of game time which again given the length of the games brings different forces into the mix, your nightmare treacle infantry horde may struggle hanging on for 3 hours when it will usually win in shorter games.

So what exactly does this mean? Well for a start you will often see forces that do not traditionally win standard open singles event being pivotal to a team. For example a British Armoured Car Company may well struggle in an open event but within the structure of the team you can protect these forces to some degree from nightmare match ups and play to their strengths. Conversely other teams know what sorts of lists will be popular and can take this into account in their preparations so is a balancing act of finding 6 good forces that will work well together. They do not all have to be able to take on every conceivable force but you must have an answer to anything within the team.
Team spirit is also critical, you have at least a year to prepare, tailor and paint your armies and work on the composition of the team and the synergy of how those all work together to give you the best chance. There is no great prize for the event, you play for your country and the opportunity to meet lots of fellow Flames of War gamers that you might not otherwise play against and to forge new friendships with Kudos for the winners, not for reward.

Luckily this year Team Wales has 2 sponsors; KR Multicase and Plastic Soldier Company which all helps towards the substantial costs involved in attending from the cost of team gifts for our opponents, team shirts through to hotel and flight costs and we really appreciate their continued support.

This will be the third year Team Wales has attended the event, in the first year we finished 10th overall, in our second year we finished 20th struggling with fire power rolls when the competition was early war but we did at least bring home a trophy for best painted at the event! Hopefully we will do better than that this year.

The composition of Team Wales is as follows:

Infantry
Paul Frith – Soviet Guards Strelkovy
Mark Goddard – German Pionier Kompanie

Mechanised
John Hopwood – Soviet Cossacks
Matt Haywood – Indian Recce Squadron

Tank
Tim Harris – German Panzer Kompanie
Roger Whittam – Soviet Mixed Tankovy

I am obviously not going to go into the synergy of the team before the event or our tactics and plans but we do hope to do a AAR for the Team as a whole.  I know even with this year’s event less than 1 week away many teams are already working on next year’s late war event that is being held in Salamanca, Spain.  So the circle of ETC life will start again.

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Team England

Team England will have an addional player in their team, in the form of their coach Mike Klaka.  A coach may assist with matchups, submit scores and act as water/beer boy however are not allowed to offer advice once a game has started.  Here is what he has to say about the team this year.

Coach (non player)

An old foggy who is well past his sell by date by name of Mike, more usually known as Santa. Ostensibly there to sort out the match ups but likely to be more useful fetching the drinks….and the refills. More active in the 1980s, one of the Bunshop players based in Surrey.

Infantry 1.

Jez – Does like playing with his Italians, which is just as well as he has used them hundreds of times before, a very solid choice who is also Captain of the team so I shall be careful what I say here. Jez comes from the far North East of England.

Infantry 2

Pete – Has opted for Romanians, never mind the quality just look at the numbers style. Not quite as old as Santa and rather less decrepit, one of the Lancashire Hotpots (so obviously based in Lancashire). An expert painter.

Mech 1

Steve – Also known as Lord C, is taking a German Panzerspah.  Also an expert painter, and when the rankings were around was top ranked in UK rankings most of the time. An avid Leicester fan (Rugby) all that shoving your head between other blokes thighs probably accounts for a lot of his foibles.  Steve lives in the East Midlands.

Mech 2
Paul - another older wargamer who was active in the 1980s, is taking a British Recce list often referred to as the Gnats as there are an awful lot of little recce vehicles. Started playing FOW about 5 years ago. Another Bunshop player based in Surrey
Tank 1
John - Is taking some Panthers for a little waltz around Athens. This is an army that is easy to pack!  John and Steve form 2/3 of the Campaign team called The Good, the Bad and the Ugly (never could work out which one was 'the Good'). John is also based in the Midlands.
Tank 2 
Graham - also known as the Exile as he has been banished to Brussels to work for the EU (but will be coming back in a few years time, having done his porridge), he is taking a Mixed Tankovy.  He did displace Steve in top spot in the Rankings briefly, another Bunshop player who started playing FOW about 5 years ago.
ETC starts on A week on Sat so look out for FB updates to see how the teams get on and a full after action report by Team Wales on our return..
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Article by: Mark Goddard