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Mid-War FoWSA 2017

I participated in the FOWSA Mid-War tournament on July 22. This tournament has grown in to a tri-annual event. There is a separate tournament for Mid-War, Late-War and Early-War. Team Yankee tournaments have been added as well. Who would've thought that 15mm WWII gaming would be so popular? I attended this same tournament last year and got completely clobbered, see that post here. This year, I did much better with essentially the same list.

My 1600 point list for US Rifle Company from the North Africa book.

Rifle Company HQ    2 Cmd Carbine team        20 pts

Rifle Platoon       1 Cmd Rifle team        150 pts
                    1 Bazooka team
                    9 Rifle team
Rifle Platoon       1 Cmd Rifle team        150 pts
                    1 Bazooka team
                    9 Rifle team
Weapons Platoon     1 Cmd Carbine team        120 pts
                    4 M1919 LMG team
                    3 M2 60mm mortar

Anti-tank Platoon   1 Cmd Carbine team        160 pts
                    3 M1 57mm gun
                    3 Bazooka team

Tank Platoon        5 M4 or M4A1 Sherman    575 pts

Parachute Rifle Platoon                     255 pts
FEARLESS VETERAN    2 Cmd Rifle/MG team
                    1 Bazooka team
                    6 Rifle/MG team
                    1 M2 60mm mortar

Field Artillery Battery   1 Cmd Carbine team  165 pts
(w/ M2A1 105mm Howitzers) 1 Staff team
                          1 Observer Carbine team
                          1 Jeep
                          4 M2A1 105mm howitzer

North Africa (v3) USA Mid-War v3 -- Platoon Count: 7

The only capability that was seriously missing in this list is anti-air units. Read on for more about that!

Round 1:
Opponent: Griff with his Italians
Mission: Breakthrough
Result U.S. Victory 4 == 3

Griff told me right away that he didn't play Flames of War very often. He was there to have fun and enjoy the time; not to be competitive. Which was fine with me since I had not played the game since the Mid-War tournament in 2016! We played at a slow pace and stopped often to check the rules. We both brought infantry lists and he won the die roll to be attacker. He had delayed reserves, while I had normal reserves. Our assigned table was very open with little cover which made his air attach very effective. The map was separated into four quadrants. Each player started in diagonal quadrants with the objectives in one of Griff's quadrants and out in the open. I setup a line of four LMG teams from my weapons platoon to delay the charging Italians headed for the objectives. He tossed out a ton of smoke on my weapons platoon and followed up with some normal artillery and mortars. While he was busy doing that, I moved my three infantry platoons forward to pounce on the objectives. His air support was able to take out my artillery in the open. I had thought they would be far from harm's way. On turn three, my Shermans were able to come on board and direct more of his fire away from the infantry. He continued the strafing runs on my infantry and that was scary for me. But, I was able to hold the objectives while keeping his ground units away from them.

Round 2:
Opponent: Chris with a German tank company
Mission: No retreat
Result: U.S. Victory 5 == 2
I have battled Chris in the past and he has always beaten me. When he pulled out an all-tank list, I was worried. But the mission favored my list. The table was mostly urban with lots of buildings and demolished factories which provided lots of cover for my ground-pounders. I was defender so I placed my paratrooper platoon on one objective (fearless-veterans) and put the 57mm guns on the other objective inside a factory. My Shermans were in ambush. He charged his tanks into the city and was rolling very good dice for the first two turns. I thought surely I would lose this match. But, he made a poor choice to push his Panther 4 tanks too close to my 57s guns. They were easily destroyed by guns concealed by the factory building. He pushed his Stug-G platoon toward the other objective. He tried to assault the paratroopers but his luck with the dice changed dramatically. At one point, he rolled three '1's in an effort to break into a building where my bazooka team was hiding. The assault failed and bogged his tanks directly in front my bazookas. Those tanks were toast and it was simple clean-up duty for my side after that.

Round 3:
Opponent: Ricky - German Panzergrenadiers
Mission: Hold the Line
Result: German Victory 6 == 0
This was a short game because I had to leave the tournament early. Rickey's list had a Ferdinand tank and lots of veteran panzergrenadiers. Again, we played on a table with lots of open area. There was large no-man's land in the middle of the tale that I had to cross in order to get at his dug-in units. So, I used the 'Truscott Trot' rule to get my units across the board quickly, since I didn't have motorized transports for the infantry. He also brought significant air support, an Hs-129B. It is literally a flying tank and it demolished my paratroopers as they ran across the open field. I lost the Shermans in a duel with the German infantry guns with help from the Ferdinand. And I lost the weapons platoon in a brave charge on the German line. I had to cut the game short and lost it badly. After the game, the tournament coordinator pointed out that I could have shot smoke from my artillery in front of my charging infantry to cover the advancing troops. That could have made a big difference. Note for next tournament; include some anti-air assets and use smoke to cover the infantry charge.

Overall, I did much better this tournament and I'm happy to have won 2 out of 3 battles!


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