Welcome to the second part of my Team Yankee list breakdown, this time looking at the forces of the USSR.
While both forces are broadly similar in terms of capabilities the Soviets get pretty cool toys, with rocket launchers, SAMs, spearheading BMPs and lots and lots of guided missiles.
So lets take a look at both an T-72 Tank Battalion and a Motor Rifle Battalion at 100pts.
- T-72 Tank Battalion
- HQ – 1 T-72
- 8 x T-72
- 6 x T-72
- 4 x Shilka
- 4 – Su25
- 4 x Hinds
- 2 x Gophers
As with the US list the core of the army is based around 2 large platoons of MBTs. However this time you are packing enough AA to shut down the enemy air and also enough of your own air to easily kill of the single platoon of Vulcans and then go hunting as you please. Its not a subtle list but it should be fun.
Once again I have gone with the single HQ tank, for the same reasons as explained in the US article last week.
The size of the T-72 platoon is perhaps more of a debate than with the US due to the different size options (3-10). I have opted for 8 and 6. This is to ensure that when defending (especially with deep reserves) I can front load my force with a total of 9 MBTs. 8 T-72 may be hard to manoeuvre with the new command bubble but I can always go line abreast if needed.
Its worth remembering with the T-72 and M1, that the chances of killing 1 (ignore the to hit roll) is the same. Whatever is firing has a 4 difference between their gun AT and the FA rating. However the M1 can kick out more shots. What the T72 can do is soak up those hits while every M1 death is a massive issue for the US player.
Shilkas & Gophers
I was torn between taking 4 x Gophers or 4 x Shilkas. After bit of maths the Shilkas came out as better against A10s and Cobras so I opted for those. The only draw back is range however I have a couple of Gophers to make up for this. Be sure to deploy so that you can cover your Hinds from cheeky A10 and Cobras gun runs!
While I felt that the A10s were too expensive in a 100pt armoured list the points break of 6 points for 4 SU25s makes them a great option. Even more so because the US has pitiful AA coverage. Their AT27 missiles will cause a lot of heart ache for the enemy M1s. While the Vulcans aren’t great on their own remember to target them first with both the SU25s and Hinds. Own the sky then go after the juicy targets.
Another steal at 10 points for 4. Its better aircraft save vs the Cobra basically makes up for the 3+ to hit, however it doesn’t get the nice hunter-killer rule. As I mentioned in the SU25 paragraph go for the alpha strike on the Vulcans and clear the sky, then deal with the any enemy Cobras, once thats done its just a case of mopping up the enemy M1s depending how the T-72 battle is going.
This force will work better in attack with the ability to overwhelm the US defence. Focus on their AA and gain control of the air early. You have spent 1/4 of your points on air so you need to use it effectively. Now if the enemy have something silly like 7 M1s and lots of support you may be best going for the Alpha strike with the air and your MBTs. It really depends what they are fielding. If the enemy is playing half on then you can really focus fire power and hopefully overwhelm them. Remember that the T-72 has ROF 1 on the move and no minus 1 to hit like in FOW (or hen and chicks) so don’t be afraid to head forward for the flanks.
In defence you can still put down 9 MBTs, a form of air and AA. Again if facing US Armour then both air supports could be deployed to try and take out the M1s early.
Soviet Mech Inf Battalion
- HQ – 1 x AK-74 plus BMP1
- BMP-2 Motor Rifle Company – 7 x AK47, 6xRPG-7, 2 PKM, Gremlin, 10 x BMP2
- BMP-1 Motor Rifle Company – 7 x AK47, 6xRPG-7, 2 PKM, 9 x BMP1
- 4 x Shilka
- 4 x Gopher
- 4 x SU25
- 4 x Hinds
- 6 x T-72
- 3 x Carnations
- BMP observer
As with the US Mech I have gone for the combined arms approach here. 8 platoons heavy on aircraft, some MBTs, Arty and lots of AA. Most importantly 10 AT 21 guided missiles!The key advantage of the Soviet Mech is the BMP2s AT21 which for every 3 hits should punch through a M1. Given the small size of the M1 platoons that means you can do a of hurt, especially combined with the T-72s, SU25s and Hinds. Equally you can quickly deal with M113s with the BMP1 platoon with their AT19. The idea is that the BMP2s stay stationary for the guided missiles and the BMP1 platoon advances. This creates a ‘Hobson’s Choice’, attack the BMP2s and therefore let the BMP1s get up your flank or ignore the BMP2s to hit the BMP1s and therefore take worse return fire. Not only that but you also have to deal with 6 FA 16 MBTs!
The AA has been beefed up, with 4 Shilkas, 4 Gophers and a Gremlin you have pretty much shut down the enemy air force.
Once again you have strike aircraft and Helis to provide support and quickly neutralise the enemy AA.
Finally the Carnations provide a good template and can also drop a smoke bombardment plus their BMP observer has the spearhead rule allowing you to increase you deployment zone and get those BMP1s up close and ready to flank.
As with a most of my lists id prefer to attack with it however with 4 platoons when defending you can sill plonk down 10 BMP2s, 6 MBTs, AA and a platoon of your own aircraft which is pretty nasty!
Hopefully that quick canter through the USSR forces will help you with your own list selection, as always please leave some comments on what you will be fielding.
Thanks for reading Mark