“World War III Team Yankee” is a mouthful, so no wonder it has taken me such a long while to enter into the post-WW2 age.
Being a ‘one system at a time’ type of wargamer, when TY was first released, after an initial look at the game which probably lasted all of 30 minutes, I decided that it wasn’t for me. I already played Flames of War which was rapidly expanding in popularity and my WW2 model collections were doing the same. To put it simply I just didn’t fancy learning what appeared a completely different game system.
When it first launched “TY” as it became known, bore resemblances to Flames of War but there were also marked areas of divergence in how rules operated and the structure of the forces; teams skills and abilities were handled in a noticeably different way all of which put me off.
Now, it could be said that what has happened in the interim is that the Flames of War ruleset has become more like TY, with Battlefront coalescing all its games into this standardised design pattern, and that TY was, in fact, the first step on the journey but, I’ll let you decide on that.
With this coalescing of the rules with the release of “World War III Team Yankee” this month, there remain some marked differences, but there is much more synergy between them and I have taken the plunge or, as I pushed, to collect a WW3: TY army all of my own.
My rational or delusional judgement being that now I wasn’t really playing two distinct games, just rather two flavours of the same game. I reasoned it was more like playing Early War vs Late War, the sample figure cases from KR Cases I previously wrote about may have helped with the decision as well!
So how am I starting out?
After a bit of looking at the model ranges and the write-ups on the Battlefront website about each of the starter armies currently available, I rather oddly chose the French for my TY army!
I did this for a couple of reasons;
- Firstly I know almost nothing about the French army of the WW3: TY period so it appealed to me as an educational exercise,
- The models appealed to my personal aesthetics I love a delta wing aircraft and the AFV’s are unique French designs so are a bit different to the other Nato forces,
- The French are a small rather fragile elite force so would present a challenge to play with well, they aren’t Soviets ( I have enough of these for FoW) and lastly, I don’t have a French force of any description for any other gaming system covering the period 1000 BC to the 40th Millennia
Once the laughter amongst the other Breakthrough Assault writers had subsided at the news I was going to collect the French, they all gave me the benefit of their unfettered opinions on what I should choose for a force. Like my fellow writers, I then promptly pretty much ignored almost everything they had to say with the exception of I needed to have aircraft units of four models, not two. It turns out, rather unsurprisingly, AA is a lot more effective in the modern era.
So I set about creating a list that fulfilled two criteria:
- Didn’t require loads of models to be painted (I’m rather time poor at present)
- Would be fairly cheap and quick to assemble!
So, I have started with a basic armoured formation to keep the model count manageable. It has a bit of everything as I have no real background of what will work well, so I just picked up what looked to be generic a mixed armoured formation based on my WW2 experience, my unit sizes are based purely on what models came in the boxes rather than optimising them at present, hence my core units of three MBT’s so I could get two units and the artillery from just two boxes, and a short infantry platoon so I have enough AFV models for an artillery observer.
As I expand the force these units will undoubtedly get optimised and expanded- I already have enough spare infantry to maximise the size and add a full Milan platoon.
Overall I have a couple of tank platoons with which to attack an objective, some infantry with plenty of anti-tank weaponry to hold ground, artillery to break up my opponents force, my own AA assets to protect my precious forces from aircraft and helicopter attacks, and some strike aircraft to generally cause havoc and threaten any hidden assets dice willing.
Overall I purchased:
- A couple of digital lists
- Four boxes of tanks
- Two boxes of aircraft
- Two packs of infantry
Throw in some splendid French dice and tokens and, all up, I spent just under £200, which for a new game wasn’t too much to invest.
I mentioned earlier I wanted something quick and easy to assemble and get on the tabletop. Easy to paint, you cry!
All the pics on the boxes have three-colour camo patterns and that will take ages to do. Whilst this is true for the unit they represent late in the WW3: TY period it is not so true of the majority of the WW3: TY timeline, as I have discovered. The French were typically clothed in uniforms and supplied with vehicles that were pretty much just bog-standard green in colour most of the time between 1946 and 1990 and this is the colour scheme I am going to adopt for my force. A couple of old NATO green spray cans have been stockpiled for this purpose.
Easy to assemble? Having made up my first two boxes of models I realise that modern tanks have a lot more fiddly bits than WW2 ones and I spent ages trying to work out how to assemble the kits, ideally without getting my fingers glued to the little bits, or breaking the turret railings for my curved turrets! Even with the online assembly guide for the AMX-30 working out how exactly to fit the searchlight/MG component is not clear.
Getting it done
I’m approaching the project as an escalation activity, setting myself small goals for each month. The first step is to get my core platoons painted over the Christmas holiday period, then my support is done in January.
As to getting in some games you never know but the Shoot and Scoot chaps might just get a surprise interloper in their latest gaming odyssey!