As the old saying goes, school is out, tanks are out! Bobby and I were both home from school for Thanksgiving break, and he wanted to get another game in. He begged and begged for an Infantry game (Flames of War), but he's not ready for that, and I don't have two Flames armies to start the learning process.
Thanks to the mission kits that include the terrain, we were able to quickly print up a river to allow us to play the mission since I've not managed to pick up the river set Battlefield in a Box. I'm also a bit shy on European buildings. so we had to use desert buildings to fill the table. After adding in a defensive hedge that Bobby insisted on the table was set.
Before we started, I told Bobby that the game is supposed to last 5 turns, so he had to move fast.
He heeded my advice and immediately started to move his Sherman's forward. I responded likewise and moved my Panthers to assume a defensive position at the bridgehead. The Panthers opened fire and failed to connect. The Sherman's returned fire and also failed to connect.
The next turn, Bobby split his forces. Two tanks came forward to the objective and the other two looked for cover from the hedges. I decided that I needed accurate fire, so I stayed in place, hoping that I'd be able to take out the Firefly in one turn. I then opened fire and accomplished the mission of silencing the Firefly.
In return fire, the final fury of the Firefly connected for a lucky hit. The remaining Sherman V's combine for 1 damage on a Panther, leaving one Panther half destroyed. Heading into the mid game, I needed to destroy 3 Sherman V's (each with 4 hull) and had 2 Panthers with a total hull of 9 left. It seemed like a fair fight
At the start of turn 3, fighting 2 tanks against three, knowing that the game only lasted 2 more turns, I was confident that I would win. The only thing that would alter this would be the dice.
Bobby continued to advance on the bridge, leaving one tank in a stationary position to provide semi indirect fire. I remained stationary to maximize my firepower. I opened fire on the lead Sherman and eliminated another Sherman tank. The other Panther opened fire on the next closest Sherman, and inflicted some minor damage. The return fire from the Sherman's focused on the wounded tank, and finished it off.
Turn 4 found me still in the favorable position. He had two turns to take out one tank and was at least two arrows away from the objective. Bobby continued his aggressive advance. Keeping my Panther stationary would again enable to use of the re-roll if needed. Again, I opened fire on the nearest Sherman, and again, I left it in Flames. His return fire found the Panther's thick armor equal to the task.
Victory was only one turn away. I had one Panther, mostly unharmed, against an unharmed Sherman V. He had to move two arrows to close the objective, so I felt confident.
He moved forward as required by the mission. Stationary fire again would be the order of the day. I opened fire once again, and the final Sherman was ablaze. Only the final fury stood between me and my first victory of the global campaign. He threw his dice, and connected for some minor damage yet again.
VIctory for the Germans!
This is my third TANKS report during the global campaign. I've loved the TANKS game since it was first released and had always wished that Battlefront and GF9 would better integrate the Tanks and Flames of War together. I know many veteran FoW players who have yet to get a single trial game in yet, thinking that the game is childish. Yet, for almost all of us, our entry into the FoW/TY, and even beyond that the larger hobby game, has come from our individual desire to move toy tanks (soldiers) across a battlefield.
Incorporating TANKS into the global campaign has allowed me to start to build a future wargamer in my household. Incorporating TANKS into the global campaign has allowed me to share with my son the love of the hobby. Incorporating TANKS into the global campaign has allowed my son to ask when is he going to be able to start collecting his first army, and when he will be able to play an "infantry game".
So, in closing, I'll allow my son to show you his army.