Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Not much of an update

I have been lax in getting updates posted.  I have also just been lax!

Last week was lost because I had knee surgery.  That meant I did not play on Wednesday, but I did hang out for about an hour watching Joe and Mike go at it.  Thursday was surgery (went fine), which also meant I missed Joe's Tanksgiving tournament at The Last Square.  I was really bummed that I was going to miss it after reading Joe's write up on the tournament.  Seemed like it would be fun.  After reading the AAR, it was!

And congrats to Joe / Keamma for the win!

I am trying to move forward with some painting.  I have a second Armored Rifle Platoon on the table, with the base coat, tunics, pants, faces and hands completed.  I need to get the helmets and webbing done, then comes the wash and highlights.

I also need to get some 25 pounders painted up before mid-December.  Mike is hosting a tournament for MW and I am bringing out the FV Paras.  I will tweak the list and drop one section of 25 pounders, but add some limited air.  This is due to one game I played in the last MW tourney where my opponent was able to hide behind terrain, move, shoot, then ST back.  Not sure the air will really do much, but the thought of it might be enough to keep my opponent from bunching up too much.  Of course, I need to actually GET the 25 pounders before I can paint (waiting on the shipment).

I have also been helping Gregg out at easyarmy.com.  I am the "rules" box dude right now.

I am also wasting time with Assassin's Creed Revelations.  Skyrim isn't going to be my thing, but this is absolutely my thing.  So my son picked up the game the day before my surgery and let me go at it.  3 days of recovery playing that game was fun, but the lying around part got old.  I am glad to be back and functioning - today was the first day without crutches.  Wohoo!  To further define my "geekness", I curl and will not get back on the ice until January - yes KAGE, Americans curl too!

No games this week with Wendesday being right before Thanksgiving.  We decided to not play and let Bev / Karl close early if they want.

I am also thinking about getting back to the topic which was one of my first posts - math / statistics.  There is a bit of dicussion on the FoW forum (General Discussion - the thread about the Master's) that is interesting - just ignore the BS going on about American arrogance.  There is some really good intelligence you can glean regarding lists and probabilities.  I encourage folks to read some of the posts.  What I might do is steal from KAGE (Rules Nazi - oh, btw totally disagree with the arty discussion, but that is for another day) and make a section on "Flames of Math" or "Flames of Statistics."  Sounds dull, boring and a lot of work.  But it is right up my alley.

And with that, Happy Thanksgiving to my American friends.  Yes, another thing the Canadians have right - celebrate Thanksgiving when the harvest ACTUALLY happened.  There, +2 for Canada!  For those of you travelling - safe travels!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Pictures from Igor and personal note at the bottom!

As promised!!

To recap - we played teams, LW 1,750 each in preparation for an upcoming tournament.  We ended up playing Breakthrough.  We modified the table size to make it a bit more appealing for the size of the teams.  We did decide that each player would be treated separately - each had their own reserve rolls, etc.  And Joe would not let our AOPs range in for each other!  Hey, I had to try.  In the end, Wisconsin and Poland defeated Wisconsin and Wisconsin (ok, we timed out, but it was a done deal).

End of USA Turn 1 -  Attackers (USA) deployed in the upper left corner.  Objectives are on lower right corner.  One objective is located in the wheat field just below the road.  The other objective is far lower right corner.  Igor's Hellcats made a move to get side shots on the Panthers (lower left).  In the middle of the board is the Stuart horde that just eliminated the Pak 40s in the trees to the right of the horde.  Hard to see, but there are 3 more Panthers lurking in the village.  Igor's 2nd TD platoon is on the road, just to the right of the village - also looking for side shots on Panthers.  Our strategy was to run the Stuarts right through the middle of the table and sit them on the wheat field objective.  If necessary (depending on reserves), we would peel off some Stuarts to get to the second objective.  Mike (in that hideous Packers shirt) is standing near his Nebs.

Closer look of the tank killing zone near the village.  76mm enter the village to play with the Panthers.  Here you can see the German Grens sitting between the trees on the right and the buildings.  Tactically, I needed to me more careful with the Grens.  They lit up 2 76mm Shermans with shrecks and Mike rolled a 5 and 6 on his Firepower tests.  Bye bye 2 76mm.  Special recognition to Joe / Keamma and Catherine (Mrs. Keamma) - they painted the village buildings.  You can see them in the terrain forum section at FoW.  Catherine did the house located at the top of the picture.  The ivy she put on the side is fantastic.  She has offered to paint some for me!!  Wohoo!!

Turn 3 now - The Stuarts have secured the wheat field objective.  Now they have to live for a few more turns.  Stuarts killed a Panther with a side shot.  Yes, I yelled STUART POWER in homage to the WWPD guys.  3 Hellcats (look a lot like M10s!!) brewed up nicely.  My 76mm are about to be wiped out (they ran).  But 4 Shermans are heading over to make sure the Panthers die.  Turns out Igor got his reserves, came on and machine gunned the FJ platoon in the open.  Nothing like rolling 17 MG dice at open ground infantry.

We ended after 4 turns - we really ran out of time with all the "getting to know you" stuff that went on.  Many thanks to Igor for snapping the pictures.

On a very personal note and I hope you all make it down this far on the blog.  This is the second time I have met someone through FoW while working / visiting another country.  This April I met Tim / Bosje in Arnhem and had a blast.  I wish I could have dropped dice with him - he even asked!! - but with my family and a tight schedule, I just couldn't make it happen.  But Tim and the others at the great shop in Arnhem were wonderful to me and my family!  I am very honored to be able to repay the favor and host Igor.  I am looking forward to the drive to Rockford with him and spending a great day with my son and guest from Poland.  I emplore everyone to take the opportunity if it arises and get to know visitors through FoW.  Igor has already asked us if we plan on playing in the European Team Tournament next year - which just happens to be in Poland.  Joe!?!?!?!?!?!?!?  I see it now - CHEESE RULES POLAND!!!  Wow, that sounds like another WWPD Dispatch!!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

International Visitor!!

Our normal Wednesday evening game was a little different this week with a special guest (no, not Charro on the Love Boat - wow, I am old for pulling out that reference) - Igor from Poland.

Igor had sent out an email to some folks in Wisconsin based on the player finder at WWPD.  Thanks guys, err Chris Miller!!!  Anyway, we welcomed him with open arms and even convinced him to play in a tournament this Saturday (1,750 LW).  He plays Task Force A, so immediately I bonded with him.  I have enough Americans to let him field the list (mostly, I only have 4 Hellcats so we had to sub some M10s).  I also had enough to still field my 3rd Armored Tank Co.

We played a practice game last night and Igor took pictures.  Once I get them, they will pop up here almost immediately.  In order to get Igor to meet as many people as possible, we played as pairs.  Igor and I vs. Mike (cornishkeebler) and Ben (we call him "medium" Ben because we have big Ben and little Ben).  Ben is a good younger player, but can make some tactical mistakes (see earlier posts).

Igor's Task Force A

HQ - 2 greyhounds
Platoon #1 - 1 armored recon patrol (greyhound, jeep and mortar jeep)
Platoon #2 - same as above
Platoon #3 - 5 stuarts
Platoon #4 - 3 shermans
Platoon #5 - tank destroyers - hellcats, 2 sections for 4 'cats
Platoon #6 - same as above
Platoon #7 - armored arty (3 priests)
Platoon #8 - armored rifles
(Damn!  That's a lot of "stuff"!!)

Allen's 3rd

HQ - 2 shermans
Platoon #1 - 5 76mm shermans
Platoon #2 - 4 75mm shermans
Platoon #3 - 5 stuarts
Platoon #4 - 4 stuarts
Platoon #5 - recon (halftrack, 2 jeeps)
Platoon #6 - armored pioneers (engineers)
Platoon #7 - armored arty (3 priests)

Ben's Germans

HQ - Stug
Platoon #1 - 3 Stugs
Platoon #2 - 2 SP AA
Platoon #3 - 3 Panthers
Platoon #4 - 2 Tigers
Platoon #5 - FJ
(I think that is it)

Mike's Panzer Lehr - Mech
HQ - 2 stands
Platoon #1 - Grens
Platoon #2 - 3 Panthers
Platoon #3 - Nebs
Platoon #4 - Pak 40s
Platoon #5 - Grens
Platoon #6 - Panzerjaegers
(I think that is it)

Breakthrough was rolled and it is one of the possible missions for this weekend.  Since I was 3rd, we attacked.  Of course, Task Force A gets a similar rule, but it was ME that got us to attack!  Mike and Ben both had german armored lists, so big disadvantage for them.  The game went slower because of the yacking that went on.  We got 4 turns in, but the game was over by then anyway.  The allies simply rolled the germans.  The panthers put up a fight, with Mike taking out my 76mm with panthers and damn panzerschreck / faust / what ever they were!!  Rolling a 5 and a 6 for firepower against 2 hits sucks for the owner of the glorious 76mm shermans!

Quick summary with pictures to follow from Igor:

On turn 1, I used recon to lift GtG on the Pak 40s that were in woods and blocking our most direct route to the objectives.  I then ran 2 platoons of stuarts to assault range and unloaded main guns and mgs.  I also used 4 shermans to support the firing, keeping them still for full RoF and no stabilizer penalty.  18 AT7 shots, 8 AT10 shots, 26 MG shots basically wiped the Paks out.  I did use Shooting to Successful to get more movement out of the stewies.  Igor ran his TDs up to get side shots on the panthers.  His recon move got him 16", then anthother 16" in turn 1.  Panthers just laughed as shots missed.  But they didn't laugh when priests rained down and over two turns knocked out 2 panthers!!  That part of the board became tank hell!

Turn 2 saw more of the same.  The stewies pressed to get near / on the objective and setup a line for defense.  The grens couldn't get out of the foxholes for fear of certain death.  Mike then used part fo the grens to jump in a building anf light up my 76mms.  TDs kept up the pressure and did the "run and hide" a few times.  Priests continued to claim victims, including a 3rd panther!!

Rest of game:

Reserves started to come on, but by this time the board was littered with 76mm ruins, panther ruins and 3 hellcats.  Pak 40s were gone, FJ were reduced to taking platoon morale checks and ARP came on in delayed reserves to sit on the second objective and use 50cals and AA MGs to destroy FJ troops in the open.  Ugly.

So at the end of 4, german armor had come on, but there was no way to get to both objectives to contest.  Igor still had 3 shermans in reserve and I have my armored pios waiting to come on.  Plus a gazillion (ok, 14!) stewies were holding the other objective waiting for panthers and grens to head their way.

This was rough on the defender due to the mission.  The germans simply had too little on the board having to face 3,500 points of allies.  Priests were awesome and paid for themselves many times over.  76mm were good, but I played them poorly.  Igor's TDs were zipping like they should and got quality shots.  Too bad his dice (supplied by me) were cursed.  My stewies were stars as usual and the recon / lift GtG worked exactly as I hoped.  All in all, a good solid effort.

On the german's part, Ben made a mistake with the panthers and gave up side shots turn 1.  That didn't hurt him as much as sitting under two barrages from Priests each turn.  ToT (we got 3 ToT) claimed on panter outright.  Mike was tactically sound / superior with his grens and their help in taking out 76mm shermans.