Saturday 30 June 2012

eBay Bargain

I've finally lucked out on eBay. Usually stuff I want I lose at the last second or the price goes way higher than I want to pay. But last week neither of these things happened. I posted awhile ago about Cry Havoc, a board game that I'd liked years ago but forgotten. I said at the end of the post that I might have a look on eBay to see if I could pick up a copy.

Well there were a couple of copies on eBay as well as a few of the expansions but they all went for £25-£35, much more than I wanted to pay for a trip down memory lane. I kept checking every couple of weeks to see if any more turned up and then I noticed a copy of Siege, one of the stand-alone expansions, up for auction. I thought about bidding for it but I really wanted the original game. I had a look at the details though and it turned out that he was selling Siege and included in the box was also a full copy of Cry Havoc. So I placed a bid expecting it to go for £30-£40 as usual.

Well bidding was quite slow till near the end as usual and I placed my final bid not expecting to win. Then to my surprise I got an email saying I'd won and for only £8.48 + £6 p&p! I've no idea why I managed to get both games for such a low price. In fact a copy of Siege on it's own went for £20 just a few days later.  The game has arrived now and it's all there and in good order so I'm a happy camper. Now all I need to do is to find someone who'll play it with me.

Friday 29 June 2012

Operation Sea Lion: Letters from Cletus 8

Time for another letter home from Cletus. This week he encounters one of the most effective killers of the war.

Dear Ma & Pa,

Hope everyone back home is fine. I'd like to say me and the Prof was both ok but it ain't the truth, we've both been real sick.

It all started about a week ago. We'd moved to a new bivouac area closer to where our next operation was going to be. We'd been there a couple of days when folks started to get bad stomach pains and the runs. We all blamed the cook cos his food ain't so good. But it got worse and worse. Folks couldn't get to the latrines on account of everyone needing to go at the same time so folks were going wherever they could. The smell was worse than Uncle Jethro's pig farm in summer. Then the Prof and I started to get the stomach pains and they was real bad, like to double you over with the pain. The runs was real bad too, worse than I ever got from eating green apples and there was blood in it too. That's when I got real scared cos I know that ain't good. Then some doctors arrived in camp, I guess someone must have called them in. They took one look at the state of us and the camp and moved us all out to a field hospital, said we'd got something called Dystentery.

When we got to the field hospital they cleaned us all up and gave us some sulfa drugs and lots to drink. Some of the worst cases they stuck a needle in their arm which was connected to a bottle of something. I think they called this a drip. I asked one of the orderlies about it and he said it got fluids into the blood for those that couldn't drink enough. Most of us got fixed up pretty quick but the Prof was in a real bad way on account of his being so old that they moved him to another hospital.

After a couple of days we was given the ok and sent to a new camp where someone had moved all our equipment. But we had new tents and cots and stuff cos the old ones was in a real bad way cos of the runs. Turns out it weren't the cooks fault after all. Seems someone else had bivouac'd in the same area a bit upstream from where we were and their latrines were badly sited and fouled the stream where we got our water. The Docs said we was lucky we just got Dysentery cos we could have got much worse. But I'll tell you we sure didn't feel lucky.

We weren't cleared for combat yet so I managed to get a pass to go see the Prof. I was real worried about him cos I hadn't heard anything about how he was doing. I sure was relieved when I got to the hospital and they told me he was going to be ok. He'd lost a lot of weight but he said they'd told him he was going to be released in about a week. I knew he was alright when he started complaining about the food. He said they was giving him lots to eat to get his weight back up but it all tasted like baby food. They wouldn't let me stay long but they said they'd tell my unit when he was discharged so I could come get him.

That's all I got to tell you this time. I'm ok now so don't you be worrying about me.

Your Loving son,

Thursday 28 June 2012

Painting Update and More Cock-ups

I've glued the MDF buildings from Commission Figurines together now and made a start on painting up the detail. It's going to take me longer than I thought as there's so much detail on the models. But hopefully I'll have them done this weekend. Here's a couple of shots of the assembled buildings.

Painting up the buildings had to take a back seat for a couple of days as we had a big Operation Sea Lion FoW game planned for last night. It was two-a-side game with each player having a 1250pt force. I had to use my Germans instead of my usual Soviets to balance things out but I forgot to check I could make a 1250pt force with them. I only realised I couldn't make 1250pts with my normal Panzerkampfgruppe yesterday morning. So I made a quick trip to to see what I could cobble together.

I normally use eight Panthers at 1500pts  but they were too expensive to fit in at 1250pts. As I don't have much in the way of German forces I was limited in my choices. Then I remembered that Blood, Guts & Glory had Reluctant Trained Panthers. A quick check on confirmed this and my eight Panthers now only came to 1060pts. But I now had the problem of what to add to bring my force upto 1250pts. My normal choices of PaK 40's and Nebelwerfers weren't available so after a bit of thought I decided to use my Sd Kfz 10/5's as Möbelwagen's and  I'd base up some of my PSC German infantry as a Volksgrenadier platoon.

Luckily I had enough spare bases to cover what I needed and I soon had the figures assembled and based. (I find it easier to paint FoW figures on their bases). This is where the first cock-up occurred. I planned to give them a spray of grey primer and then do the bases with PVA and sand so they wouldn't look too unfinished on the table (I wouldn't have time to paint them completely). But as I was rushing around trying to get everything done in time it wasn't until I started to paint the finished bases I realised I hadn't primed the figures yet. I thought about spraying them then but it would have meant re-doing all the bases and I just didn't have the time.

The second cock-up was similar. I'd finished painting my desert buildings from Kerr & King and they just needed a quick dry brush white to pick out the detail and then a spray of matt varnish to seal them. Of course in the rush to get everything ready for the big game I forgot to dry brush them before I sprayed them with varnish. Not the end of the world but still annoying. I guess I don't work too well under pressure!

Anyway here's a couple of shots from last night's game showing the buildings in action. The full report from the game will be up this weekend.

I'll do some better shots of the buildings next week. I would do them now but it's 1.30am and I'm knackered so you'll have to wait :-)

Wednesday 27 June 2012

Well That Didn't Go As Planned

Having assembled and glued my MDF buildings it was time to paint one up to test the colour scheme I'd chosen. I left the exterior walls white, painted the exposed brickwork red, the windows were painted brown and the door green. I was happy with how everything looked so I went ahead and brushed on my Army Painter Dark tone dip.

This is where everything went wrong. I was expecting the dip to run into the detail on the walls picking it out. But for some reason the dip wouldn't run and just stayed where it was brushed. I tried adding more dip to get it to run but this just made things darker and didn't help it run. The results can be seen below.

I'm going to try and dry brush some white or maybe a beige colour to soften the streaks to see if that helps. Thankfully it wasn't one of the big buildings. But the brickwork does look better in real life than in the photo and I'm happy with the approach I took. Maybe I need to add some thinners to the dip to get it thin enough to run smoothly.

Tuesday 26 June 2012

Painting my MDF Buildings

I've made a start on assembling and painting the MDF terrain I got from Commission Figurines. I decided to spray the roads and pavements grey and then dry brush white to pick out the detail. Then I'll give them a coat of Army Painter Dark tone dip.

For the buildings I went with the interior walls sprayed brown and the exterior walls sprayed white. I'm going to pick out the exposed brick detail in red and then also coat the rear and side walls with Army Painter Dark tone dip. On the front wall of the ruined building I'm going to paint the individual store fronts different colours like the ones in the photo below. Then I'll probably give them a coat of Army Painter dip too to pick out the detail, although I'm not sure what shade dip I'll use yet.

An example of the shop fronts painted up in different colours

I haven't shown you a close up of the roads yet but as you can see they have a lot of 'cobble' detail etched into them.

Road piece.
The various pieces ready for assembly

The interior of the walls

The next stage is to glue the buildings together with PVA glue and then paint a test area to check that everything looks ok. More on that tomorrow.

Monday 25 June 2012

Even More Terrain

The last of my terrain purchases arrived this weekend. This time it was a resin bridge and two hills from Terrain Warehouse. I've needed some hills for a while but even though prices are reasonable it always seemed that the postage cost was way too high. But this wasn't the case with Terrain Warehouse. The two hills plus the bridge and including postage came to £16.68 which I thought was reasonable. That price does include a 15% discount for being a member of a recognised wargames club.

I was a little worried about the flock on the hills as it looked a little dark on the website but I'm quite pleased with how they look now they've arrived. I also wasn't certain if the bridge would be wide enough for tanks to cross but as you can see from the picture below tanks fit on the bridge fine.

Triangular hill

Small hill

Resin bridge

The hills come pre-painted and flocked but you can buy them without flocking if you prefer. They also offer a desert finish if you don't want green. I give them 7/10, they're not brilliant but they do the job and I'd buy more if I needed them.

Sunday 24 June 2012

FoW: MDF Terrain Quick Update

My posts on the MDF buildings from Commission Figurines have generated a lot of comments and a question about shipping overseas. So I passed the comments on to Walt from Commission Figurines and here is the information I got back.

First up was the issue of shipping overseas. This is what Walt had to say.

"We're having a bit of a dilemma about P&P. We were going to do it on weight like Timecast but our Paypal shopping cart is only basic and can't do it! Alternatively, we thought about doing it by building, but of course if customers want separate parts or bases, etc. that doesn't work. Then there is as a percentage of the cost which will probably be the way we go. Give me a couple of days and we will thrash out our policy."

Good to find a supplier who responds to the needs of their customer base.

On the question of offsetting the buildings to reduce lines of sight and fire, Walt pointed out that the roads can be positioned to allow this, so you can stagger the buildings rather than having the fixed grid. They have also developed extension pavements and roads to allow walls to be put together to make 400mm or 600mm lengths and so on. There are also inside corner pieces as well to allow 'L' shaped building configurations!

Walt also had some news about new products in the pipeline mentioning that they have developed a plaza/town square which will make a nice centrepiece to any urban layout.

I'll be looking to get at least some of my buildings painted up this week so look for a post on how the process went in a few days.

Saturday 23 June 2012

Getting Started with Flames of War

WWPD are running a series of articles on how to get started playing Flames of War. I've found them to be useful but for me they miss some of the real basics a new player would ask. So I've decided to do my own guide to FoW for the new player. I'm not an experienced FoW player in fact I've only been playing seriously for about three months but that means I still remember what confused me when I started out. So, hopefully, I'll be answering all the basic questions a new player would ask.

Q. What do I need to play FoW.
A. You will need some 15mm or 1/100 scale models to represent your army; a rule book; six-sided dice (D6); a tape measure; tokens to indicate the state of a model e.g. 'Bailed Out'; a flat area to play on 6'x4' is ideal but you can use smaller areas if necessary (a table top is fine); some terrain such as hills, woods, hedges etc (you can use books for hills or buildings to start with to cut down costs) and an opponent who also has an army.

Q. That sounds like a lot of stuff. How much is this going to cost me?
A. Sadly this is one of those 'it depends' answers. The cheapest army bought new would be between £30 & £40, the most expensive could be £200+ and this would be for unpainted models. You probably already have a table, dice and a tape measure. The tokens can be bought on eBay for about £3. The rulebook is about £32 new but there is another option I'll talk about later. You could also buy one 2nd hand but make sure it's the 3rd edition rulebook.

Q. Can I just buy any models I like and start playing?
A. No, FoW games are usually played to an agreed points total with armies that are structured on their historical counterpart. Which means you'll be limited in what you can choose.

Q. How do I find out what's a valid army? Do I have to do the research myself?
A. Luckily no, Battlefront have produced a series of 'Intelligence Briefings' (more commonly known as army lists) which contain all the information you will need to pick a legal force. But studying the history of your chosen force can be fun and help you understand how to best out of your troops.

Q. So, do I have to buy these intelligence briefings as well?
A. Again the answer is yes and no. If you buy the hardback rulebook set you get thirteen lists covering British, U.S., Russian and German forces from the late war period. There are also free PDF briefings available on the Battlefront website covering specific units or campaigns. In addition to this is the website. Here you can access the free briefings or pay a nominal fee (usually $2) for access to a particular Intelligence Briefing that interests you. It also has the benefit of providing handy printouts of all the information you will need relating to your chosen force. I would recommend using, it may seem a little confusing at first but it's a great resource.

Q. I've seen mention of Late War before, does the period your army is from matter?
A. Yes, it does. Battlefront decided to make Early, Mid and Late War distinct from each other so an Early war (EW) force can't play a Late war (LW) force. This is because of the difficulties created by the vast increase in capabilities of things like tanks over the course of the war. For example an EW tank's gun wouldn't be able to damage a LW tank but the LW tank could easily destroy the EW one, leading to boring and unbalanced games.

Q. So how do I decide what period to play?
A. If you are going to be playing at a wargames club ask them what period they play or if you're just going to be playing with friends work out between you which period you would all prefer.

Q. Ok, let's see if I've got this right. First I pick a period (EW, MW or LW) then I pick an intelligence briefing from that period to represent the theatre of war I'm interested in, then I pick a nationality from that briefing and finally a force for that nationality. Correct?
A. Yes that's it.

Q. Ok, so how do I go about picking the best force?
A. I'll answer that in the next article.

Friday 22 June 2012

Operation Sea Lion: Letters from Cletus 7

Time for another letter home from Cletus. This week he talks about fighting a Panzerspahkompanie and learning to speak Russian.

Dear Ma & Pa,

Hope everyone back home is doing ok, me and the Prof are both fine. I got another letter from you this week. It seemed kinda thick and I was worried it was bad news. So I was real pleased when I seen that it was some photographs that you'd sent. It sure was good to see you all again, made me feel like I was back home for a while.

Seeing as how it looks like I'm gonna be with these Russkies for awhile the Prof decided to try and teach me how to speak some Russkie. The tank crews is helping me out some too. I thought I was getting the hang of it so I decided to try it out on the Russkie Captain. He comes round to check on the Prof every morning and to tell him what they need him to do that day. I wanted to say 'Good Morning' to him and that part was easy. I also wanted to say that I was proud to be fighting with his unit and looked forward to pushing the Nazis back into the sea. The Russkies is always taking like that, they sure do hate them Nazis. I got out the dictionary the Prof gave me and sort of got the words down on paper. The Prof wasn't about so I got some of the Russkie tankers to help me say it right. I read it out and told 'em what I was trying to say and they told me some of it was wrong and told me what to say word by word kinda like remembering a poem.

I decided to speak to the Captain the next morning so I said the phrase over and over so I'd get it right. Next morning I was pretty sure I'd remembered it right and waited for the Captain to come round. There was a bunch of the guys who'd helped me hanging around. I thought they was there to see if'n I said it right. Anyways the Russkie Captain comes round and asks for the Prof and I says my phrase to him. Well he looked at me like I was touched. Then all the fellers burst out laughin' and the Prof comes out to see what's goin' on. Turns out the Russkie tankers thought it'd be real funny to teach me the wrong phrase. Seems I'd told the Captain that I thought he was real attractive and that I'd sure like to go to a dance with him some time. Boy I sure felt dumb. Lucky for me the Captain wern't mad, leastways not with me. But he tore into the Russkie tankers real hard, guess he didn't 'preciate being made the butt of a joke.

We saw more action this week but things didn't go too well. We'd been ordered to try and take this village and it's river crossing. But when we arrived the Nazis was already there. Our tanks were strung out over the countryside so we only had one platoon ready for action. We tried to hold some houses on our side of the river as well as the road we needed to get back to our lines.  The Captain took some of the KV's to probe the river crossing but they came under artillery fire and then we saw some Tigers crossing the river to threaten our flank. We did a bit of long range shooting without much happening. The Prof was trying to direct the rest of our tanks onto our position when a bunch of Puma armoured cars appears on our right flank. Fearing that we'd get cut off from our lines the Captain started to move back from the village. Then our other platoon arrived on the Nazis right flank and started to try and take the river crossing from behind. But them Nazis wern't having none of that and raced them Pumas round our rear to cut us off. They sure was fast little suckers and surprised the heck out of us moving so quick. The Prof started to call in our Sturmis but more Pumas kept showing up. The Prof managed to call in the Sturmis to finish off the first group of Pumas but the next group hid in some woods where they couldn't be seen. With our route back to our lines in danger of being cut the Captain ordered us to pull back.

We got back to camp ok be we was beat and just hit the sack. Seems like no matter what we do, win or lose, things don't change. It's just one fight after another and it starts to get to you after a while. Food don't taste like much of anything, you're on edge all the time and sometimes you wake up in the middle of the night scared to death, certain that there's someone nearby who wants to kill you. It ain't no way to live but there don't seem no end to it, lessun you get killed. The Generals and their big plans don't mean much to us at the front. Taking some ground don't mean didly if it costs you a friend. It's got so we ain't fighting for freedom or apple pie no more, we're just trying to stay alive. I know it sounds bad but all I'm trying to do these days is keep me and the Prof safe and that's getting harder all the time.

Your loving Son,

A report on the battle Cletus refers to can be found here.

Thursday 21 June 2012

Quick review: MDF Terrain from Commission Figurines

I talked about the great looking MDF buildings from Commission Figurines a couple of weeks ago. Well I couldn't resist any longer and bought some from their eBay store. My package arrived yesterday morning so I decided to do a quick unboxing.

I received the Konig Strasse & Berlin Strasse buildings, some roads, and a few other bits & pieces. This was my first look at them in the flesh. Was I disappointed? No, in fact they had even more detail on them than I expected.

So what do you get in a pack? You get four external walls, four bases with moulded in pavement and a ruined internal floor. The pictures of the Berlin Stasse pack are shown below. The buildings come well packed with the parts in a ziplock bag.

Depending on the building you will usually get different front and back walls. The amount of detail etched onto the walls is fantastic. A really good painter will have a field day painting up these models.

Rear wall of Berlin Strasse

Front wall of Berlin Strasse

Again depending on the building the walls show varying bits of battle damage. Here the damage can be seen on the side walls.

The walls fit into groves in the bases that come in the pack. For me the nicest touch is the moulded in pavements which give a more realistic look to the buildings. In case you're wondering what the slots in the bases are for, they're for internal walls. They're not available yet as the manufacturer wasn't completely happy with the prototypes so far. It's good to see a manufacturer who cares more about quality than just getting products out of the door to make a quick buck.

This brings up another aspect of the buildings, their modular nature. You can buy individual front, rear and end walls so you can make up buildings to your own design. Add to this the different internal layouts you'll be able to choose and you can have a great variety of models on your table.

The last piece in the pack is a ruined internal floor. Again the detail is great with the floorboards clearly visible.

The ruined floor

So what do they look like assembled and on the table? The answer is great, as you can see in the photos below. One thing you don't really grasp until you see them in the flesh is just how big the buildings are, even the photos don't really convey their size. They really have a presence on the table top. The roads are cut so they neatly fit the pavements on the buildings and come in various lengths and configurations. They have a cobbled effect etched into them which should paint up well.

The buildings can be dissembled after use and packed flat but I think I'll be gluing mine together as I have plenty of storage space.

A ruined street in Berlin

Down and dirty with the troops

In addition to the buildings they also do game markers for FoW. Below is a shot of the German marker set. It contains five each of Pinned, Gone to Ground, Dug In, Bailed Out, Ranged In, Bogged Down, and Hull Down for a total of 35 markers.

German game markers

The last thing in the pack was a business card, but what's so special about that? Well its laser etched onto a FoW large base. I think I'll use it as the base for another objective marker like this one.

That way if anyone asks me where I got the buildings from I can just flip over the objective marker and all the details will be there. But there's nothing to stop you using it as an artillery base or whatever you want. Again just another of the well thought out little touches from this manufacturer.

As you might have guessed I'm delighted with the buildings. But are there any downsides? Yes, one massive one. You'll be up all night trying to work out how you can find enough money to cover your table with roads and buildings for a massive assault on Berlin urban game. :-)

Once I've worked out colour schemes I'll do some posts on painting them up. I think I'll start on the roads first as they should be easy to do.

Wednesday 20 June 2012

Yet More New Terrain: Walls

The results of my spending splurdge on terrain are continuing to arrive. Today I took delivery of a pack of 74 wall pieces that I won on eBay. I paid £13.60 inc postage for the wall set from deltic-locomotives. As you might guess from the name they sell railway accessories and this wall set, in varying pack sizes, is regularly available if you want to pick some up.

They are made from resin and come pre-painted. Although I think a better description would be pre-washed. The one's I received are much lighter in colour and although they appear to just have had a light brown wash they do look ok.

Below are some more pictures with a PSC Panther and Battlefront U.S. 105mm cannon included to give you an idea of the scale of the walls in comparison to 15mm tanks and infantry.

Each of the straight wall sections is about 2.5" long so with the corners and gate sections you get about fifteen feet of walling which works out for me at about 90p a foot which I reckon is a pretty good deal.

So what do I think of them? I like them and I'm happy with the purchase. They're a good height and can be used straight out of the box and at 90p a foot I can't go wrong, 9/10.

Tuesday 19 June 2012

New Roads & Rivers

The sharp-eyed amongst you may have noticed some new roads and rivers in my recent FoW batrep photos. These were another eBay purchase, this time from jefferson64adrian. He does a range of styles and sizes to suit your needs. He's also happy to do some customisation if you have specific needs. I spent £45 including postage (he does combine postage if you ask) for which I got the following.

The roads/rivers are 300mm long and 50mm wide and have a very flexible rubber base which will easily lay flat over obstacles/hills. So for my £45 I got 10 feet of road plus the junctions and five feet of river plus the bend and junction which I think is a pretty good deal. They are made to order so take a bit longer to arrive but the timescale he quotes is accurate.

What do I think of them? I think they're great and I'm already considering buying more. Also one of the guys I game with liked them so much he ordered some too. I'd give them 9/10. Here's some shots of them in 'action'.

Sunday 17 June 2012

FoW: Operation Sea Lion - Dust Up

Thursday night saw me take a trip over to Dave's for another Operation Sea Lion battle. It was a 1500pt game between my Soviets and his Panzerspähkompanie. My force was the usual:

Guards Heavy Tank Regiment - Fearless Trained
Gvardeyskiy Tyazhelyy Tankovy Polk HQ - 1 KV-85
Gvardeyskiy Tyazhelyy Tankovy Company - 5 KV-85
Gvardeyskiy Tyazhelyy Tankovy Company - 5 KV-85
Priority Air Support - Il-2 Shturmovik

While Dave took:

Panzerspähkompanie - Confident Veteran
HQ - 1 Sd Kfz 234/2 Puma
Panzerspah Plt - 3 Sd Kfz 234/2 Puma
Panzerspah Plt - 3 Sd Kfz 234/2 Puma
Panzerspah Plt - 3 Sd Kfz 234/2 Puma
Heavy Tank Plt - 3 Tiger 1E
Motorised Artillery Battery - 4 10.5cm leFH18/40
AA Plt - 3 Sd Kfz 7/2

We rolled for mission and got Dust Up, with me going first. The terrain was set up as shown below.

The initial layout

The view from Dave's quadrant.

We both had delayed reserves so I started with five KV's and the CiC on the table while Dave went with his artillery, AA and Tigers on table.

My starting position

Dave's starting position

I'd originally planned to attack the objective between the river and the ruin but Dave's Tigers had it covered. So I decided to threaten the village and wait for my reinforcements. On my turn I moved up two of the KV's along the road to the village.

Dave surprised me by advancing his Tigers. I was expecting him to hold with them and wait for his Pumas to arrive. No one had LoS so no shooting this turn.

I start a cautious advance towards the village

Turn two lifted the restrictions on air support so I called in my Sturmis onto his artillery. I stayed where I was everywhere else as i waited to see what Dave would do with his Tigers. My Sturmis survived the AA fire and knocked out a gun.

Sturmis attack.

Dave continued his advance with his Tigers and repositioned his AA. His artillery ranged in on one of my KV's but did no damage, a trend that was to continue throughout the game.

I'm going to have to move next go as he's ranged in.

The repositioned AA now has better coverage on the guns

Turn three saw my Sturmis fail to arrive for a change I also failed to get any reserves. Elsewhere I moved  two KV's towards the village. They then took pot shots at the artillery observer in a house by the ford but missed.

Dave got his reserves and three Pumas arrived and immediately took cover behind a house ready to threaten one of the objectives. The Tigers shot but did no damage.

The Pumas hope that the Tigers will knock out the KV covering the objective.

My slow advance on the village continues. I'm being very
careful not to expose my tanks to his Tigers.

Turn four and I get my reserves. Sadly being slow they plod towards the objective at mere 8" a turn. Elsewhere I move my CiC into position to get a shot at the Pumas and the KV's near the ford manoeuvre to get a shot at the Tigers. Sadly I can't make any firepower rolls and do no damage to either the Pumas or the Tigers. My Sturmis attack the artillery again but miss.

Dave makes him reserves roll again and three more Pumas arrive. They zoom 16" forward to threaten the rear of my CiC's KV. The Tigers reposition to engage the KV's near the ford and knock one out in the shooting phase. Dave throws caution to the winds and does a double move with the Pumas that came on last turn that puts them next to the far objective. That's a nasty surprise for me. I didn't expect a 32" move and if I don't get rid of them next turn it's game over. The Pumas threatening my CiC rain shells off his armour but can't penetrate.

The Pumas race forward to grab the objective.

The skirmish at the ford hots up

My reserve KV's plod towards the objective in the far wood

Turn five and time for the Sturmi's to save the day. Sure enough they arrive and position for an attack. This lightning dash forces a rethink and the KV's reposition. My reserve KV's advance and manage to knock out two more guns with some good long range shooting. My CiC fires on the Pumas threatening him but can only bail one of them. But the main event is the air attack I roll the dice and it's two kills and a bail so I live to fight another turn. The remaining Puma makes it's motivation roll so it's not over yet.

Dave again makes his reserve roll and yet more Pumas arrive. But he fails in his remount attempts. The newly arrived Pumas also move up threaten the CiC. The Pumas that were near the CiC race forward to grab the objective. His shooting does no damage again.

The aftermath of the Sturmi's attack
The reserve Kv's advance but are 2 to 3 turns away
from threatening the objective.

If my Sturmi's can't clear out these Pumas it's game over.

Turn six and I call in the Sturmi's successfully but they can't range in on the Pumas. As I have nothing nearby which could knock out the Pumas I concede.

Dave played this one really well, using his superior numbers and mobility to catch me out. At the start of the game I knew I had to stay near the objectives to protect them but I couldn't resist moving forward to attack and that ultimately cost me the game. Another win for the Axis forces and my third loss in a row. Just as well Stalin's not in England or I'd be getting my pistol handed to me!

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