Well after my first article on Panzer Regiment 11 and their rather poor performance in Ghost Hunting in their raw form today I’m going to look at the lessons learnt and how the list can be evolved in to a more rounded force overall, Martin
To start lets just remind ourselves of the original force.
So what were the problems? Essentially it was an issue of numbers, resulting in a basic inability to prosecute the assault phase. Numbers is a serious challenge with the mid war pointing of German armour (using the Bun Shop guys points I’d get 3 more tanks!) The Flame tanks did an excellent job of pinning down the Soviet infantry but simply weren’t able to assault and when things went a bit wrong due to failed cross checks or getting bailed out I couldn’t defend them from lone team assaults. The mixed Panzer units worked pretty well overall with the Panzer III 7.5cm being particularly cost effective vs the T-34’s at range thanks to its heat ammunition. The least effective tanks were the Panzer III 5cm tanks as much of the tank battle was fought at longer range but those are unavoidable and I need a tactical reappraisal of how I use them. Out ranging a T-34 is OK but not if you can’t hurt it.
So my objective now is to add in some infantry and to try to improve the kill rate of my armoured units especially at longer range if possible I’d like to add some artillery and a spearhead option. There’s not a lot of room for manouver in the list but lets start with adding in some infantry with points being an issue I want as many teams as possible for the lowest cost so I’m going to go with a standard Grenadier platoon of 7 teams for 9 points to start with. To facilitate this I am going to drop the Panzer IV from platoon 1 this leaves me with an HQ and 3 platoons of 3 tanks at this point.
Next up to rejig the Mixed Panzer Platoons. I’m going to move the remaining Panzer IV upgrade points to my HQ and go with just a Panzer III 7.5cm in both my platoons, these are as effective as a Panzer IV at over 16″ range if not quite as good up close. This may prove a more effective way to play with them. I can potentially use the movement orders of which thanks to Stormtrooper I can potentially have 2 more usefully to blitz forward with the 5cm gunned tanks to shoot and then scoot back to increase the range for return fire. The 7.5cm is best kept at long range whilst the 5cm need to closer, under 16″ (40cm) to really have any chance of being effective vs a FA6 tank, keeping them further back will also make it harder for the T-34’s to flank my units. So this change adds some tactical options and thanks to being overworked, making the T-34’s move forward shooting against against my front is a reasonably low risk tactical ploy (at least 5+ to hit and 3+ to save puts the odds in my favour). These changes adjust my point spend to 96 points.
Looking at the available options 4 points isn’t going to offer me much and certainly not any artillery which I really would like to add. Looking at the unit listings I noticed I could field the Flammpanzers as a platoon of just 2 now this is risky but with some artillery to drop a smoke screen to advance behind this could be my most viable option to free up points. This change reduces my list to 89 points leaving me 11 points which is just enough to add a unit of Wespe self propelled artillery, this will give me a good barrage vs dug in infantry plus the all important smoke barrage that will enable me to screen my infantry and flame tank advance. Once this has been completed the Wespse unit can move forward and provide some direct fire support and help protect my precious panzers from getting flanked.
Overall I feel I have managed to increase my attacking capability and I could stop here. I now just lack a spearhead capability to cover all the bases. To get this in the only option is to remove the Panzer IV upgrade from my HQ tank this gives me 5 points to play with, mmmmh, that model is kinda cool but needs must for a Panzer Kommander.
Firstly I’ll add a light scout troop at 2 points to provide the desired spearhead capability and some more anti-infantry capability. Next I’ll upgrade my infantry to Panzergrenadiers being MG armed is a real benefit vs Soviet infantry just 4 pinned teams is statistcally enough to stop a Soviet infantry assault! This left me 2 points to play with looking at the options more armoured cars or Command Cards were the options to choose between. I decided on adding the Blitkrieg Command Card allowing all my units within command distance to pass a Blitz order on a 2+ would make a suitable thematic and helpful option with my revised way of using the Mixed Panzer platoons.
So there you have it my updated and hopefully improved list now to try it out, I’ll report back on how I get on in a future article, Martin.