Thursday, September 16, 2010
I've finally gotten into something I've wanted to for a long, long time but have refrained because I don't want to have another episode of "get all the stuff to play when there is no place to play," like I did with paintball.
I speak of airsoft. The competitors of Atlantis Games and Comics, Tower of Games, have started up an official store airsoft team. I'm all kinds of in on this. I know, I'm a bad man, hanging with the "enemy," but I don't care. The Tower guys are a good group that got a bad rap because they were a close by competitor to the VB Atlantis location. Well, the VB store closed and Tower claimed the Greenbrier area as theirs. To all of you who still hate Tower, stuff it, get off your pedistal, they are a good group.
I already traded out all of my old paintball stuff that I barely used. The most I really used that was one backyard game that lasted less than two hours because it was just me and one friend and we had limited ammo. Other than that, it was plinking in the backyard.
I traded it all out on Craigslist for a JG M4 CQB with two hi-cap mags, two batteries, a vertical foregrip, gun bag, and a red/green dot sight. Alot of fantastic stuff that I've already gotten a good amount of use out of. For those of you that don't know, airsoft guns fire 6mm plastic bb's and this one if fully automatic.
We play out at Ballahack Airsoft in Chesapeake, it's a fantastic field. A massive place of about 96 acres of forested goodness. There is a small town in the centerish area of the field where a lot of the action takes place. Even Regina, my fiance, came out with us last weekend. She had a great time, I was worried that she'd get lit up and want to go home straight away. That didn't happen.
We were in the first Force-on-Force game in the village. Force-on-Force is basically Call of Duty Team Deathmatch. Well, me and Regina ran up and posted in the four story building (only the first floor is available at this time due to construction). I'm shooting at guys in and behind the two story building across the clearing, she's hanging back not getting shot.
We decide to make a push to a closer building and succeed in doing so without getting shot, but a enemy player pops up in the window on the other side of the building. I drop back behind cover, click my gun into semi-auto (it's the rules for being really close, a full auto burst from 5 feet away blows), I pop back from behind my wall to tag this guy. He's gone. And I hear from behind me "Safety! Safety," guy went around the building and "killed" us with safety kills. Our attacker drops back because of return fire and Regina gets dragged off by a teammate to get healed by our medic (MEDIC!) and I'm left sitting in the dirt and a crossfire.
I'm waiting for a teammate to drag me to the medic and I'm wondering about Regina. How's she doing, is she ok? My question is answered by seeing her make a push on the opposite building with a couple other guys. She's fine. I'm still dead.
A short while later, a teammate runs up and drags me to the medic (yay), and Regina is sitting on the ground against the wall crying. Crap. Turns out she got killed again (shot in the face) while I was waiting for someone to come get me, and got lit up while being dragged to the medic and got shot in both ears. Now I want you to remember back to your school days. Remember how much it sucks to get flicked in the ear from behind? Yeah, now imagine that flick is a 6mm bb flying at 400fps, and it has a few friends behind it. Yeah, she's hurt but the game isn't done and the enemy is closing in on our position.
I post up by the wall with another guy on my left in a shack. We pin down the attackers and I run up for a good sized brush pile and start taking down guys, trying to tag their medic runners. After killing a couple enemy players, one gets a lucky shot between the brush and shoots me in the neck. So now I'm dead again and have time to worry about Regina. Is it going to be time to pack it up and go home because she doesn't want to get lit up again?
No, she's charging up to another building and dragging wounded to the medic and returning fire. I'm not worried about her at all now. If she can get lit up in both ears, and get her balls shot off (think about it, she's got piercings) and go back out there and paint a big fat "SHOOT ME! I'M BEING A MEDIC RUNNER," sign above her head, then I don't have to worry about her. I'm going to anyways.
The game ends with our side winning. The next game is another Force-on-Force, we just switch ends of the village.
Me and six other guys make a suicide charge on our right flank to distract the enemy from our team rushing the berm. I get killed straight way and am in a really bad position, so I wait a bit and then walk over to the dead guy area. The round ends fast with a win for our side again, I think. Regina ended up posting up with the medic and covering him and his runners.
In the end, we all had a great time. Now we have to do is save up some cash and get Regina the gun she wants once she decides on it. Until next time, enjoy.
Monday, September 6, 2010
I actually managed to win two games out of three. Mostly win by Victory Points, but it's still a couple wins. I ran a Panzerkompanie from Fortress Europe.
HQ and 2iC: Panther A's
3 Panther A's
3 Panzer IV's
Full scout platoon in swimmwagen
4 panzerwerfer 42's with extra crew
Limited air support, Stukas with bombs
It went really well over all, good turn out, no rules issues or absurd broken lists. Good times.
I'm working on a new list using one of the PDF's on the FoW site. Kampgruppe Kastner.
Friday, September 3, 2010
I'll get more posted as I work on it.
Thursday, August 5, 2010
Here we have some close ups of some of Panther A's. I tried to do a proper Late War German camouflage without the aid of an airbrush. It didn't turn out quite to my satisfaction, but I fixed it with the aid of this article on the Flames of War website: http://www.flamesofwar.com/hobby.aspx?art_id=1736
Here we have a Panther in my not quite so good camouflage. It could be much better, especially if I were to spend more time painting, but I want my stuff done fast cuz I'm lazy and I can only stand so much painting before I lose my drive to paint and quit until I decide to start painting again.
And here we have a collection of 3 Panther A's done up in a simple whitewash winter camouflage. It's quite simple really. Just paint your vehicle as you normally would, let it dry, then get yourself some salt and white primer.
I applied the salt of a moistened tank in areas that I felt the whitewash would flake/wear off quickly. Areas like around the treads, the front end of the tank, and the turret.
The front end and treads got the most salt applied because a quick and dirty paint job chips off really easy, especially if you're a tank moving at speed over a road or field. I hit other areas lightly to simulate small arms fire and crew crawling about the tank.
The third step is to re-prime the tank white when the salt dries, we don't want it to flake off yet. It'll cover up the tank and all of your hard work, but it'll pay off. When the white coat is fully dried (I mean really dry) we take our tanks to the sink.
Using warm water and a sponge, gently scrub off the salt. What will happen is the original paint job can be seen again and the whitewash will look chipped and flaky. If you're lucky, you may even get some crater-like effect and have slightly raised edges in the whitewash. Either way, you get this fantastic effect that makes your (my) quick and dirty paint job look ten times better. It's still quick and dirty, but it's supposed to look dirty.
I still need to do some finishing touches, such at painting up the tank commander but I'm good for the moment since I have a huge mass of nebelwerfer's and SS-Panzergrenadiers to paint up.
Now, I'm off to do something else. I'm going to try to snag a copy of Zombie Dice by Steve Jackson games and put up a review of it up for everyone soon. It's great.
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
This is my first attempt at a battle report. I really got into the game and forgot to take pictures of anything after deployment, so I'm really working from memory.
This game was, unfortunately, blue on blue. My SS Panzerkompanie vs a Tiger company and 1750 Late War.This is my force here, seven Panther A's, one Luftwaffe 88, and a full SS scout platoon.
Here is my opponent, Greg's, force. 5 Tigers, on bergepanther ARV, 6 nebelwerfers, 3 squad platoon of scouts with command panzerfaust, and panzerpioneers.
This is a rather blurry picture of nearly everything after deployment. The only thing that you can't see is my poorly placed 8.8 way off to the left and his CiC Tiger which will get placed in the sunken road at the top left corner of this shot.
I'm the attacker, we are doing the Fighting Withdrawal scenario, I'm attacking and he has two blasted Tigers in ambush. My primary plan is to scoot one Panther platoon through the woods in hopes of minimizing the the treat of his Tigers and send another Panther Platoon racing up the middle to spread out his fire. My scouts will stay in between each platoon to reduce his ambush options.
My recon team used the recce pregame move to slide up in position to assault his entrenched scouts and flush them out of the woods.
My turn one saw my snow pattern Panthers roll up into the woods and my standard issue Panthers roll up into the village. My scout platoon moved forward and opened fire on his scouts. I failed to do anything significant with any of my shooting. Needing his panzerfaust toting scouts out of the way, my recce platoon pressed that assault only to repelled by defensive fire and losing two stands.
Greg's first turn consisted of sitting tight, butchering my scout platoon, taking out my 8.8 with his nebelwerfers and destroying one Panther in the village.
My second turn was a bit more eventful. My snowy Panthers and CiC slid up outside the second set of woods and managed to crack one Tiger. My Panthers in the village fired a volley at the remaning Tiger and bailed it. Sadly, his crew refused to flee.
Greg's second turn saw Tigers spring an ambush as close as possible to my flanking Panthers near the woods, destroying one and bailing the other. His recce platoon runs up and assaults the remaining Panther in the platoon, destroying it and capturing the bailed out tank. Not looking good for me, but I still have my CiC and two Panthers in the village.
My village Panthers sit tight, hoping to destroy more Tigers with extra shots. My CiC crashes his way over one of my destroyed Panthers and fires a shot as this Bergepanther that is screening a lone Tiger, it'll mean Greg has to move his Tiger around or through the wreck to get to me, either way it'll slow him down. My village Panthers drop some well crafted rounds on his platoon of ambush Tigers that stormtroopered out of the woods and blow one up and bail the other.
Greg's turn is the make or break for me. If he knocks out one more platoon I'll have to pass a Company Morale check to not bug out. All of his bailed out vehicles remount and prepare to wreak havoc on my Panthers. His Bergepanther slides out from it's screening position and the Tiger behind blows my CiC back to the factory. The village Panthers take some hits, destroying another, but they pass their platoon morale.
My turn. Company Morale time! I need a 3+ to stay in this game....oh wait. My CiC is dead. I can't roll Company Morale, there is no one to give orders. My remaining force panic, flee, and turn in their uniforms.
What did we learn today? One, I need artillery, if only for smoke screens. Two, I need to stop leading the attack with my CiC. He always gets killed when I need him to be in command. The main reason why I keep doing this, it's the main reason I keep losing, is because I have the 40k mentality for Company Commanders. In Flames of War, your Company Commander is just as squishy as all the rest of your troops. In 40k, your Company Commander is usually a giant beat stick of doom that chews kittens and spits out tank rounds.
It was a good game, I'm working on a SS-Panzergrenadier infantry company using Panthers and nebelwerfers as support. I think I'll do better with that. We'll see.
Questions, comments, concerns, quips, wise-crack, or smart-ass remarks? Leave some.
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
7 Panzer IV H
7 Panther A's
4 StuG G
2 full Fallschrimjager platoons
1 full platoon of motorized scouts in Swimmwagen
And oddly, I am yet to win a game. Mind you, I've only played about 4 games. Mostly it seems as though I simply have lousy dice and luck. Despite my losses I'm rather keen on this game and would certainly like it to gain more steam in my local gaming community. Which it is, slowly, but I managed to get a friend hooked on it the other day. So it's slowly gaining steam. And that's good.
Now, what is Flames of War, you ask. And why should I play it, that you also ask.
Well, it's a World War Two based tabletop wargame set in the European Theatre. And from what I've seen there is no such thing as a broken list. Infantry companies are numerous and inherently defensive. Mechanized companies are fast, mobile and well suited for nearly any situation. Tank companies are small aggressive forces that may seem unstoppable at first glance.
Well the game is surprisingly well balanced. Some players that have experience in other wargames may see the balance straight away. For the inexperienced, the difference is a bit harder to see.
One may say to themselves, "Tank companies must always win. I mean, they're tanks! I know something about WWII and those German Tiger tanks are tough nuts to crack. A whole army of them must be unstoppable." That can be true. Tigers can be unstoppable beasts in even inexperienced hands. However, a well entrenched infantry platoon can destroy a Tiger in close assault. And artillery just ruins everyone's day.
The gameplay may seem complicated at first, but is surprisingly smooth. I've also found that it can be inexpensive to get into. The "American Rifle Company" box contains nearly 1300 points of infantry. Mortars, bazookas, snipers, and lots and lots of little men. Mind, a Panther platoon box contains nearly the same amount of points for a mere 5 tanks.
I'll cover more on this game later. Battle report to come this week.
What I'm intending to do with this blog is to put up the odd product review, battle report, and painting tutorial (though I'm a lazy painter and find easy and quick ways do finishing stuff). There may even be a rant or two in here about the type of gamers or perpetual floaters that annoy me so, like the nefarious Unsupervised Game Store Kid.
I currently do all my gaming at my FLGS, Atlantis Games and Comics in Norfolk, VA. I'm actually planning on heading up there tonight to get a Flames of War game in and, hopefully, document it with pics and such to my first ever battle report.
Oh, and I chose the name Undercroft Enterprises because I like the way it sounds.