Sunday, February 20, 2011

Blitzing Blitzkrieg

Last week I was finally able to get my first full game that included Early War forces from Blitzkrieg. I've had some interest in the period for a while, but know absolutely nothing about the campaigns in Poland and France. So, in an effort to help bone up on this decrepit area of my knowledge, I've decided to add yet another massive project onto my already quite full hobby bench: I'm going to blitz Blitzkrieg and this is how I'll do it.

Years ago I started collecting the Time Life WWII series. They are an exceptional series filled with large photos and great easy-to-read histories on the topic at hand. I've pulled out Volume II: Blitzkrieg and have started to read through it. The books give you a very general feel for the period, and usually doesn't go into much depth as low as company levels. But this gave me an idea for how I'd like to build up my EW collection. Rather than field specific historical units I am going to build a force that captures the generic feel of the period for each nation featured in the Flames Of War: Blitzkrieg book. These lists will contain everything that is classified in my mind as essential to the story. Basically, I want to sum up a campaign in a single Flames Of War force.



So, I spent an evening knocking up some lists that I think capture the very flavor of the campaigns in Poland and France. I've listed them below and though they are in the order as they appear in Blitzkrieg, I'm not necessarily going to work on them in that order. Also, I should note, I will not be holding my other current projects: Brest or Bust, or my Soviet Militia. I'll be working on all three simultaneously as they happen to cover Early, Mid and Late war by sheer coincidence.

Once I get all four armies finished, I'd like to invite any eager soul to join me one weekend and play a series of three games 'nutshelling' the first campaigns of WWII.

Poland
The first list is a Polish Batalion Piechoty (Infantry Battalion)

HQ with Mortar Platoon: 75 pts
Piechoty Company with one platoon and Anti-tank Rifle team: 205 pts
Piechoty Company as above: 205 pts
Mounted Kawalerii at full strength: 440 pts
Armoured Train at full strength and with two Armoured Railcar Platoons: 835pts
Total: 1760 pts

Notes: Obviously a Polish force needs to include some cavalry, infantry and the ubiquitous armored train!

Germany
The second list is a Leichte Panzerkompanie (Light Tank Company)

HQ with Panzerbefehlswagen & Panzer IIC early: 75 pts
Leichte Panzer Platoon with 3x Pz II, 2x Pz I: 215 pts
Leichte Panzer Platoon as above: 215 pts
Mittlere Panzer Platoon with 2x Panzer IVD: 300 pts
Kradshutzen Platoon at full strength: 255 pts
Panzershutzen Platoon at full strength and 1x Anti-tank Rifle team: 265 pts
Light Panzerspah Platoon with 3x Sdkfz221 (MG) armored cars: 100 pts
Heavy Anti-aircraft Gun Platoon with 1x 8.8cm Flak36 gun and extra crew: 140 pts
Priority Air Support with Stuka Schwerpunkt: 175 pts
Total: 1740 pts

Notes: To me, the iconic pieces of German blitzkrieg are: Panzer Is and IIs, Motorcycle troops, armored half-tracks, armored cars, Stukas and, of course, the fearsome '88'. As a cross section of these things, I think this list does well.

British
The third list is a Rifle Company, rated as Regular (CV).

HQ with mortar section: 80 points
Rifle Platoon at full strength: 185 pts
Rifle Platoon at full strength: 185 pts
Carrier Platoon with 1x Carrier Patrol and 1x Boys AT Rifle upgrade: 105 pts
A12 Tank Platoon with 2x Matilda II and 1x Matilda I: 535 pts
Machine-gun Platoon at full strength with trucks: 165 points
Anti-tank Platoon, Royal Artillery with 4x 2pdr Anti-tank guns and trucks: 185 pts
Field Battery, Royal Artillery with 4x 18/25 pdr guns with quad tractors: 305 pts
Total: 1745 pts

Notes: This is meant to be a cross section of the professional soldiers of '39. The essential Matilda tanks will make sure that the German 88 has some work to do!

French
The fourth and final list is a Compagnie de Fusiliers-Voltigeurs (Rifle Company) and rated as Active (CT)

HQ with Mortar Squad, Mortar Section, Anti-tank Section, and 2x Resupply Sections: 180 pts
Fusiliers-Voltigeurs Platoon at full strength: 120 pts
Fusiliers-Voltigeurs Platoon at full strength: 120 pts

Fusiliers-Voltigeurs Machine-gun Platoon at full strength: 100 pts
Battle Tank Platoon with 3x Char B-1 heavy tanks: 550 pts
Deep Reconnaissance Platoon with 3x Panhard AMD-35: 105 pts

Horse-drawn 75mm Artillery Battery at full strength: 290 pts
Horse-drawn 75mm Artillery Battery at full strength: 290 pts 
Total: 1755 pts

Notes: No picture of EW France is complete without a Char B-1 tank, nor can it be accurate without a pile of the old reliable 75mm mle 1897 artillery guns. 

.......

So thats it! Easy as pie, I say. I have a fair chunk of the French list done, so I'll likely work on that first, followed by the Germans, British, and the Poles. Hopefully at the end of it all I'll have four armies to reenact EW in an extremely generic series of games!

Left: My painted French army so far.



4 comments:

  1. Nice work my friend. I thank you for the "sample" of Russian blog posts to push me over the fence for my next army.

    ReplyDelete
  2. haha! Well, in all honestly it really doesnt take much to delve into russians. Everyone sits on the precipice, all it takes is enough peer pressure :) We should join forces and start working on Steve!

    ReplyDelete
  3. What you have painted for the French army looks great.
    I have to keep my willpower up so I won't start with early war.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Nice looking French... I gotta get me some of those Panhards.

    ReplyDelete