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Monday, December 31, 2012

Dust Warfare Battle Report: SSU vs Axis

Andrew and I got together for a battle over the weekend - he took a variant of his typical Axis force with some new and notable changes, and I tried out one of the SSU Red Guard lists from a previous post.

Here is my best guess at his list (and, yes I know this isn't exactly right - this is just close :) ):

Dust Warfare - Force Builder
Faction: Axis ( 306 / 300 )
---  Heroes
Lara (29)
---  Schwer Platoon (157)
Command Section: Heavy Kommandotrupp (35)
1st Section: Axis Gorillas (24)
2nd Section: Heavy Recon Grenadiers (30)
4th Section: Laser-Jagdgrenadiere (25)
Support: Jagdgrenadiere (23)
Support: Sniper Grenadier Team (12)
Support: Beobachter Team (8)
---  Sturmgrenadiere Platoon (120)
Command Section: Kommandotrupp (25)
1st Section: Heavy Flak Grenadiers (26)
2nd Section: Battle Grenadiers (17)
Support: MPW II-D "Lothar" (40)
Support: Sniper Grenadier Team (12)

And here is mine:

Dust Warfare - Force Builder
Faction: SSU ( 300 / 300 )
---  Heroes
"Winter Child" Colonel Ivan Vasiliev (70)
---  Red Platoon (230)
Command Section: "Red Command" Red Guards Command Squad (25)
1st Section: "Red Thunder" Red Guards Antitank Squad (20)
2nd Section: "Red Storm" Red Guards Assault Squad (26)
3rd Section: IS-48 B "Lavrentiy Beria" (85)
4th Section: KV47-B "Natasha" (40)
Support: "Jnetzi" SSU Sniper Team (14)    + Walker Dissection (3)
Support: "Jnetzi" SSU Sniper Team (14)    + Walker Dissection (3)

We used the battle builder, and ended up with 'Eliminate the Enemy' for objectives, 'Close Engagement' for deployment, and 'None' for conditions. I deployed everything in the central portion of my deployment zone - figuring that my smaller, more elite army would be poorly suited to breaking off and attacking his force piecemeal. The one part of the army that I did deploy away from everything else was Winter Child - he started off hidden along my right flank -- away from the Heavy Flak Grenadiers (one of Andrews few units that could hurt him), and much more importantly, ready to get some sweet payback on Lara and her Heavy Recon Grenadiers for all the SSU casualties they have caused in games past!

Andrew had just picked up the Jagdgrenadiers - he had included both of these in his list, and had swapped out his normal Loth for a Lothar. These changes gave his force much more long range anti-tank and anti-infantry than in the last few games.

Here is our deployment prior to turn one:

And here is Winter Child heroically preparing for battle where no one can see him (not hiding, mind you - preparing... :))
The laser Jagdgrenadiers have an excellent firing lane at the Lavrentiy Beria... Foreshadowing, perhaps?
Turn 1:

I got initiative, and laid into the Lothar with the tank-hunting snipers, doing 3 wounds in the command phase. The Beria attempted to finish it off, but a nice armor save kept it from dying. In the unit phase, Winter Child jumped up to threaten the snipers and gorillas - killing the entire sniper team after they had killed one of the valiant SSU snipers. The SSU snipers managed to finish the Lothar off - killing it before it had a chance to shoot a single time. In Andrew's turn, the laser Jagdgrenadiers opened fire against the Beria with their initial supercharged attack, but failed to hit a single time!

Turn 2:

Winter Child attempts to exact revenge against Lara - causing 2 wounds on her. The snipers and the Natasha attempt to join in the fun, and manage to do another 1 wound to Lara, and 1 to the squad. Andrew's gorillas run around my right flank, making good use of their ability to climb. The laser Jagdgrenadiers clear their reload from the supercharged first shot, and attempt another shot at the Beria - this time, they hit, and with the help of their fancy new high-visibility lasers do a whopping 6 damage to the Beria! I manage to save several, but end up with 3 damage going thru. Ouch. :(

Winter Child blasting Lara and her squad from high, while the gorillas attempt to outflank the SSU.

Turn 3:

Andrew turns the tables on me, and seizes the initiative! The laser Jagdgrenadiers fire again, and once again score 2 hits - doing 4 damage this time and damaging the tracks on the vehicle immobilizing it! The heavy grenadiers shoot, and damage the snipers - killing both teams. The other Jagdgrenadiers do 2 damage to the Natasha. Finally, his gorillas charge across the open ground between the buildings - ending on top of the one previously held by the snipers - threatening for the next turn.

Winter Child swoops down to attack Lara, doing a few more damage. The Natasha and Beria attempt to finish off some more squads for victory points - doing damage, but not killing anything. The Red Guard command squad runs into the building to hide from Andrews snipers, and the gorillas use this opportunity to react and run down behind the Natasha and Beria.

Turn 4:

I manage to regain initiative, and the Red Guard command squad orders the Assault squad to 'Unleash Hell' on the gorillas - killing them all. Winter Child finishes off Lara and her squad, and turns his attention on the Beobacher squad. Andrew's laser jagdgrenadiers attack the Beria, but don't hit twice this time, and the tanks thick armor shrugs off the blast. The jagdgrenadiers attack the Natasha - doing some damage, but not enough to kill it.

The results after the Red Guard unleash hell on the gorillas. Unfortunately, I neglected to get a pic of them menacing behind the Natasha and Beria. Just take my word for it - they were there, and the SSU weren't very happy about it. :)

Turn 5:

We both take our last pot shots, but are pretty ineffective.

Winter Child posing dramatically for the SSU tabloids for the inevitable SSU victory!
The Beria (for the second game against Andrew) just barely survives with a single damage left and is immobilized.


The SSU win - I think for the first time against Andrew's Axis!

Post Game Thoughts:

  • As expected, Winter Child is good, but not great. He's going to take a lot to take down, but he won't kill an entire army by himself - he still needs support and suppression help from other units. I am a little surprised that, unlike jump troops, the enemy can react to him. I think he is a decent choice for a list, but he really needs a good supporting cast. On a side note, if you haven't seem the model in person - it is awesome. Probably one of the best in the Dust line, in my opinion.
  • The Natasha did an excellent job applying suppression throughout the game. After the game, Andrew said he would love to see a second in the list - I agree, but I'm just not sure where the points would come from unless Winter Child gets replaced.
  • In this game, the tank hunting snipers were huge. Removing the Lothar from the game in the first turn really changed up Andrews battle plan - no more hanging back and waiting, he had to come to me.
  • I am still worried that this SSU list could have major problems against aircraft, but around my area they haven't been played much. If this changes, I will have to include more anti-air.
  • The new SSU order - unleash hell - can be very nice on occasion. I still think that it is uncommon to have a unit that has no reaction or suppression tokens on them when you want this order, but when you get it off - wow. Imagine what a unit of Fakeyli could do... :)
  • The new laser jagdgrenadiers are nasty - the have slightly less damage output as compared to heavy laser grenadiers, but their damage output doesn't change as they take damage. About the only issue I can see with them right now is that they may be easier to run off with suppression, as they are technically only a single model. They, along with the regular jagdgrenadiers, can form a very nice anti-walker duo in an Axis force.
Any thoughts or comments on the game?


1 comment:

  1. I think Winter's child may be able to do well against Axis and SSU but overall against lists like Elite Command Squad plus Action Jackson or any other armor ignoring units is going to have a very tough time. With the fact that British Paratroopers or now the Devil's Own being able to put out 9 armor ignoring shots its going to be interesting. I can see lists being built around these units.