Man, I love it when you finish a project! Being the only one of our group who will be able to make it for the Kamloops tournament, I felt I had to represent with a decently put together army. So after much deliberation I narrowed it down to two lists, a Gepanzerte Panzergrenadier list that was pretty vanilla with the exception of a King Tiger tank or a Panzerspah list that featured a boatload of Pumas as well as the King Tiger. I called it my ‘Big Cat, Little Cats’ list.

I had a bit of extra time and decided to make up a proper army display board as well. Got myself a cheap frame from Walmart and hoped over to Home Depot after work yesterday to get some MFD board cut to size. I then went to town painting, flocking and adding texture to the display board. I think the results turned out pretty damned good!

Realizing though that I didn’t have Sd Kfz 250s but rather the 251s I decided that it wasn’t good enough to proxy them (especially given that Von Saucken comes in an Sd Kfz 250 and could easily be gun tanked should someone want to unless he was with a proper Aufklarung platoon) so I whipped over to the local game store, picked up a box and whipped them up.

I love this army. Everything has antennas where they should have them and decals and markings where they should be!

Dietrich von Saucken

Dietrich von Saucken and his Halftrack Transport

I tend to lead from the front when it comes to my armies. Folks have often commented how I’m in assault by the first turn. It’s kind of a thing of mine.

So when looking for a hero to bring to the Kamloops tournament, I really latched on to Dietrich von Saucken. Not only does he have some really decent rules (allowing rerolls for stormtrooper and rerolling reserves) AND he’s a higher command, so I have a better chance of actually making company morale checks (a downside of leading from the front is you often get shot in the face). The history of this guy is awesome too.

Von Saucken faught in WWI where he was injured something like 7 times. He then went on to train Germans prior to WWII then became a General, got almost morally injured again, again went back to training, got tired of that and went back to the frontlines where he carved out a reputation for himself making effective counterattacks out of hastily constructed military forces.

Just my kind of guy.

I figured he’ll be great to lead the German warmachine.

Thoroughly enjoyed painting this model which comes with his transport. I took special care on his figure to get the monocle and added antennas to his Sd Kfz 250 halftrack to make it stand out.

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King Tiger Henschel

I would say that I’m likely a funny kind of German player.

Like most German players I LOVE any variation of halftrack, like any German player I’m totally in love with Dunklegelb. But I think unlike my brothers from the Fatherland I tend to shy away from the heavy armour or things that require a huge investment of points.

While realistic paint techniques are popular today, I did want my German army to be more reflective of '70s kind of 'candy coated' miniatures.

That’s why I am so attracted to the Panzerspah lists; you get a ton of little tanks that run around super fast and it’s a pretty ‘finessey’ army to play. I like having some tactical variation in my lists and I tend to favour lists that have ‘underdogs’ that are either outgunned or have to rely upon speed and flexibility over brute force and strength.

When both my Ottawa buddies AND my pals in Calgary had pushed for me to take Panthers in my Puma list as a focal platoon I resisted it a fair amount.

I’m likely the only German player to have never fielded a Tiger of any variation. And I own 5 Tiger IEs.

So with this upcoming tournament happening in Kamloops I decided that I wanted to focus less on creating a ‘nasty’ competitive list and more on playing with some stuff that I normally wouldn’t take, so that meant Tigers.

At first I had a list prepared that was going to take not only 2 Tiger IEs but they were going to be upgraded to Carius and his buddy, but in the end I just wasn’t into painting all of the models (2 Tigers plus another 8 bloody Pumas on top of the 10 I already own) plus the cost to acquire this list was a little outside of my budget range.

As well a lot of Flames of War players who have a lot more experience than I do with the game had brought up the very good point that Tiger Is in late war, especially now with Soviets and US having access to high AT weaponry, are usually just bullet magnets.

So instead I decided to spend the points on 1 King Tiger. With a wholoping 15 front armour and a gun that will swiss cheese through just about anything the Allies have to offer, it seemed like an obvious choice if I was going to take a Tiger of any kind in Late War.

Let me just say I LOVED assembling and painting this model. Just the profile of a Tiger II is an image charged with power and dread in history. The idea of having this as my center piece model was pretty thrilling.

I like the way it turned out! All I need to do now is add some decals and it’s ready for the tournament!

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Just part of the centre phalanx Howard controlled.

A little late in my posting this but I had the opportunity to play in the Calgary R.E.G.I.M.E.N.T.’s D-Day event, which we held on June 9th. D-Day is actually June 6 for those of you who aren’t too knowledgeable about things historical but since that was the middle of the week we landed as close as we could.

I played the Germans with my buddies Brad and Rory defending Juno Beach which is no easy task! Our club member David had designed up a 6′ x 16″ board that accurately portrays Juno Beach in all it’s glory! Tasked with defending the town of Bernieres, I had to drive off the droves of Canadians storming the beaches in that section while Brad took the centre of the board between Courseulles and Bernieres where, to my knowledge the Royal WInnipeg Rifles and the Queen’s Own Rifles of Canada were fighting viciously.

I have to say, though I normally love playing Germans my heart was really with the Canadians during this day. I’m not one to swell with patriotic pride very often but playing this scenario and the more or less accurate nature of it instilled a quiet kind of awe and reverence for the Veterans that our great nation has had fight for us. Just imagining what those brave men had to endure so that the free world could remain free from the tyranny of the Nazi armies made me feel quite honoured and frankly undeserving of such a sacrifice.

SO while I absolutely LOVE tournament scenarios, being able to play a historical event, especially one that is so near and dear to Canadians brought me a new level of understanding and pride for my nation.

GO Canada!

p.s. True to form, the Canadians ended up taking the countryside. While the Germans fought and held them off for as long as possible, Howard’s phalanx in the centre pretty decisively broke through and Stuarts assault on Bernieres was a pretty decisive one!

To see more pics go on over to the Gallery.