Saturday, February 19, 2011

AAR - FoW Mid War Tournament - The Last Square, Madison, WI

Just finished up my second tournament ever and make a good showing.

So let me set the stage:

Mid war - 1,500 points, split into 3 task groups.  White is 1,000 points and must be a legal build.  Red and Blue are 250 points each.  No splitting of points across each task group.  3 games, random missions chosen from Encounter, Free for All, Fighting Withdrawl and one other that we didn't use and I don't remember.

I brought American armor, which is CT.

2 75mm Shermans (CiC and 2iC)
4 75mm Shermans
4 M5 Stuarts
1 Recon Section (Tank), which is 2 rifle teams, command carbine, M2 Half track and 2 unarmed jeeps)

1 Recon Section (Tank) mirrored exactly like above
1 Armored Field Artillery Battery - 3 M7 Priests

1 Armored Rifle Platoon - normal with 3 rifle teams and bazooka swapping out for 37mm gun
1 Sporadic air from Warhawks (I proxied my P-47s)

Round One:

Played Ben, who is a young player in our normal league.  He fielded a german grenadier company.  The mission was Encounter.  Ugg.  But we had all 1,500 points on the table.  I was defender, he was attacker.  He could only bring in 2 platoons and I could field 3.  He ended up putting down a platoon of 3 Marders, a Tiger e and grenadier platoon (Tiger was the CiC).  I put down armored rifle, Stuarts and Shermans.  Recons (both) and Priests were in reserve.  From my view, he went Marders on the left objective, grenadiers in the middle protecting the other objective and the Tiger on a slope with a line right down the road.  I didn't realize it then, but Tiger had a shot on my Shermans.  I had placed an objective on my end behind a river and put the armored rifles on it.  Stewies were on the other side of the river and the Shermans were in the middle.  Picture below shows the end.

Turn 1:

He moved his Marders up on a hill and killed a Stewie.  Uh oh.  His Tiger had a shot at a Sherman due to poor placement (recurring theme) and killed it.  Stormtroopered his Marders back, but due to an aggressive first move, he could only get one below the hill.

On my turn, I rolled for air and got 2 planes.  I rushed the Marders with the Stewies and I was able to get a shot in.  My CiC came along for the ride too.  I ended up bailing one of the Marders.  I moved the Shermans into the village and hid from the "big kitty."  Planes came in and...  wiped out the Marders.  Literally.  That was pivotal because the whole left side was empty.  Now it was a race to the objective and the Tiger had to pivot over.  Could I get there before reserves on 3?

Turn 2:

Race is on.  Tiger moved over.  Somewhere, he bailed my CiC from a Tiger shot by missing FP to kill.

On my turn I double timed the Stewies to contest.  I then had to aggressively move the Shermans towards the Tiger, including putting my 2iC 1 inch away.

Turn 3:

Big roll - his reserves.  No!  He took the shots at the Stewies and only managed one hit.  Bye bye Stewie.  But he could not get to the objective and he could not get enough hits on the Stewies to force a morale check.

My turn 3, I have an objective and the game is over.

6-1 Victory, but I only killed one platoon and lost zero.

End of the game

Round 2:

Up against Dave from Chicago playing Finns.  I can't tell you the specifics, but he had nasty troops with super deadly Anti-Tank rating, 2 mortar platoons (122 and 80 somethings) and 2 KV-1 or 2s.  Can't remember.

Mission was Fighting Withdrawl and we could field White group and either Red or Blue.  I went with Priest / Recon task force and kept the planes and the armored rifle platoon out of the game.  I was the attacker.

I spread out the objectives as much as possible.  He decided to place all of his infantry in the woods.  He had his nasty anti-tank infantry on my left and his KVs on my right.  What was key to this game is that he decided to defend the table length that we had placed our stuff on while getting ready.  Afterward we both agreed that he should have switched sides with me.  His second mistake was that due to terrain, I actually had a path to the KVs that limited his vision.

Start - after Recon

I don't remember the details of the game too much, but I did an "American Sherman Bull Rush" up the right flank and sent the Stewies up the middle to keep his infantry in the woods.  After two turns, I was able to close in on the KVs.  Untimely rolls (good for me) on his armor saves and by turn 4, I had both KVs destroyed.  He tried a last ditch assault, but the Sherman's and Stewie's machine guns were just too much and the resulting pin ended the game.

Another 6-1 Victory, but I only killed 1 platoon and zero lost

I do have to say that Dave was one of the nicest, most sporting people I have played against.  He made the game a pleasure.

End of Game - pinned on the assault, we did not move them back

Round 3:

Mission was Free for All and only used the White (1,000) group.  I drew Caleb from MN.  He was the best of the 7-7 group.  Since I had killed 2 platoons and lost 0 in 2 games, I was in 3rd.  Two other players were 12-2, but they had killed more platoons.  Joe made a comment that I was "too efficient in winning."  Darn!

Caleb had 2 platoons of german pioneers and a platoon of various Panzer IIIs.  By the way, how do you German players keep up with the 267 different types of tanks!!

Turned out to be a great game, but I made two massively stupid mistakes and I wish we could go again.  I had to play for the 6-1 win to stand any chance of getting the tourney win and qualify for USA Nationals.

Mistake 1:  I placed my Stewies where the Panzers could see on a long range shot.  Dorkus that I am hung my Platoon Leader out on the edge.  Gone.  Destroyed.  Now I can't move them.

Mistake 2: I am an idiot and did not remember the rule about CiC or 2iC "choosing" a new platoon leader.

So because of those two mistakes, my Stewies are pill boxes.  My Shermans made a game of it and caught 3 of the 4 panzers in the open with side shots.  All 3 gone.  Caleb failed the Platoon morale check, but the darn Company Commander saved him.  I was unable to get the last panzer.  Since I was playing for the win, I had to get aggressive with the tanks.  His pioneers were sitting on the objectives and dug in.  I got too close and learned how nasty flame throwers can be.  3 Shermans gone in the assault, but the Platoon Leader passed the Platoon morale check.  I lost the 2iC earlier in the game and by Turn 8, he was shifting the pioneer teams across the board to get his objective and along the way took out my last Shermans.  With stationary Stewies, we shook hands.

1-6 Loss.

I did not get a picture of the last game.

So, 13-8 after being at 12-2.  But not bad for my second tourney.

On a related note, I did win best painted army!!

I want to thank Joe for setting up the tourney and for Bev & Karl at The Last Square for hosting the event.

Here are a few pictures!

Mike (right) who did qualify for USA Nationals this past Fall.

Joe (center right) - Thanks for being the host and ref!!

Best painted.  Explosion markers will be on the post tomorrow!


  1. Cool report, and well done on the wins!


  2. Thanks!

    I am really getting more bummed about the last game. I am sitting back and having a beer and beating myself up with little things I did wrong.

    Oh well, I just hope to learn from it and do better the next time!