Warlord Games HQ’s own advocate of very loud shirts, Bernard Lewis, recently rounded up three eager volunteers from around the business to participate in a Tank War mini-campaign. Over to him for the rundown!

Bernard – “I decided we wanted two Axis and two Allied players for an even spread. The first round would represent blue-on-blue training games, a straight shoot-out, with subsequent rounds introducing objectives until each player had fought each other player. The fourth round game would be a doubles game of Axis vs Allies. For added fun (or more accurately gloating rights) we’d also keep a tab of points we scored individually.

After a few gentle nudges for tanks to be stuck together and painted we finally managed to get going. Although being a veteran of many a Warlord game these would actually be my first-ever games of the second edition, and Jon had yet to play the game at all! In that regard both the Conors had an advantage over us, but that wasn’t to matter – this was all in the interest of camaraderie and good fun – and mocking is bound to ensue for anyone who takes it too seriously!

Good luck to us all and may the most sporting person win.”

We asked each of the generals to come up with a little backstory and flavour for their chosen tank platoons:

Bernard – “Young Captain Nikolay is leading the survivors of his battle group. He is mounted in his KV-1S, supported by a T34/76 and an OT-26. These inexperienced survivors have got together to carry on the fight after the German Blitzkrieg cut them off. The three crews are committed to driving out the German invaders; they may not have much fuel or ammunition and their tanks have a few dents in them, but they are not going to surrender, they will fight on to the bitter end.

Captain Nikolay is a young farmer who worked on his parents’ farm and joined up to defend the motherland from the fascist invader. His experience in farm vehicles landed him in the tank corps. He thought this would be a lot safer than the infantry, but after the first engagement where the tank divisions were rolled over by better-armed enemy tanks, he has decided he needs to pick his fights carefully.”

My Soviet tank platoon is as follows:

  • Inexperienced KV-1S – 210 points
    • Command tank – 25 points
  • Inexperienced T34/76 – 156 points
  • Inexperienced OT-26 – 84 points

Total Points 475

Conor H – “Sergeant Zachary McDermott served in the Western Desert campaign in the 7th Armoured Division as part of the Armoured Car Corps and earned a reputation of recklessly charging towards enemy tanks. These bizarre and bold manoeuvres earned the attention of his officers who recommended he be returned back to England to train to be part of the Light Tank section attached to an Armoured Division; such boldness would be better suited for a more armoured steed. His training was completed just as the 7th Armoured were redeployed fully to England for the planned Operation Overlord and he was soon shipped out for battle as Section Commander for M5 Stuarts. More familiar with the desert plains of Africa than Europe, his bold methods were quashed by the thick bocage country of southern France and the appearance of more impressive ‘big cats’.

My chosen army is inspired by historical TO&E of Late War British Armoured Divisions in Normandy which typically included a section of 3 Stuart Light Tanks for a Recce Element. They often had an Armoured Car for intercommunication between the Recce element and the Tank Platoon, though historically this would likely have been a Daimler Dingo or Humber Scout Car, and the paltry machine gun would be of no use in this particular campaign. I chose instead to go with the Anti-tank gun equipped Daimler Mk1. My force sports heavy armour for the designation of tank (+9 on the front thanks to Reinforced armour) but only carries light anti-tank guns, which might struggle against heavier targets in a head-on assault, I hope I can rely upon my numerical advantage and small size to seize the initiative and spread out, taking advantage of cover and getting flanking shots on my opponent’s heavier tanks for a more likely chance to ‘brew them up’ (set them alight in tank crew vernacular).”

  • Inexperienced M5A1 Stuart VI (Seawolf) – 124pts
    • Command Vehicle – 25pts
    • Armoured Platoon Commander +1 Bonus – 5pts
  • Inexperienced M5A1 VI (Asegai) – 124pts 
  • Inexperienced M5A1 VI (Helen) – 124pts
  • Inexperienced Daimler Armoured Car – 92pts

Total Points 494

Conor T – Young Leutnant Erik Lynchter of the 411th Panzer Division had managed to make it back to German territory. His Panzer division wiped out when their position was overrun. Beaten but not broken Lynchter has made it back to the reserve lines, mustering a repaired Panther that had been all but forgotten in storage, and rejoined the German advance, along with a pair of outdated Panzer IIs in order to reengage the Allied advance…

So I have been back and forth with lists for the last month or so, first going for smaller tanks, rethinking with armoured cars but finally settling on a “hmm I wonder what one of the bigger cats if any I can fit into 500pts” list. The Panther is obviously the main thing here, its Super Heavy Anti-Tank gun on the turret at a whopping 84’ range meaning I should be well within half for most engagements and thus not suffer -1 to hit. The plan for this +7 Pen monstrosity is to simply line up and shoot at anything that comes within Line of Sight and watch the fireworks. To support it, the Panzer IIs will be great little distractions as well as ever-useful extra order dice. I plan on using these to protect the flanks of the Panther and inflict as many pins as I can on the enemy tanks. My biggest weakness is that points investment is very much in a single tank – that is inexperienced and thus may not be too accurate in the initial campaign. Hopefully, it will level up quickly with kills and become regular as soon as possible.

  • Inexperienced Panther Ausf D, Pintle MMG – 299pts
    • Command Vehicle – 25pts
  • Inexperienced Panzer II Ausf A – 84pts
  • Inexperienced Panzer II Ausf A – 84pts

Total Points 492

Jon H – “Unterfeldwebel Dieter Sicarus rose from obscurity to become a poster child for the Ministry of Propaganda during the invasion of Fortress Europe by the Allies. After the initial assault and fall of the coastal defences, allied forces began to worm their way into the fatherland; recon-groups and fast armoured car units were scrambled to paint a better picture of exactly what was happening. During one of these recce patrols, Dieter’s unit came across a long column of allied armour making its way towards the river Maas. Upon the discovery, Dieter’s Puma group lanced into, and through the allied line. The inexperienced allied tanks panicked and lost all cohesion, the Pumas charged twice more – dashing through the beleaguered tank column until their ammo ran dry. What was left of the allied column limped back to their own lines and Dieter was rewarded by being portrayed as a Heroic Knight of old – having vanquished the invading dragons. He was thus given additional Pumas to repeat this feat time and time again. 

My army list was made as an extension of my existing Konflikt ’47 army. The theme of that army is based around purists who eschew the use of rift-tech of the genetic enhancement variety – instead relying upon solid training, the best equipment and overwhelming firepower. As it’s a mostly a force built around narrative (a Thor Heavy Panzermech, King Tiger and a horde of SS stormtroopers) I wanted to add some fast mobile units that give the impression of a more rounded force; the Pumas race ahead and feed information back to the Thor who bombards the enemy in preparation for surgical stormtrooper strikes. For this campaign, I’m hoping to play this small tank force like Napoleonic cavalry; charge straight down the middle full speed and lance whatever’s at the end of the line, rinse and repeat.”

  • SdKfz 234/2 ‘Puma’ Heavy Armoured Car – 128pts
    • Command Vehicle – 25pts
    • Armoured Platoon Commander – 5pts
  • SdKfz 234/2 ‘Puma’ Heavy Armoured Car – 128pts
  • SdKfz 234/2 ‘Puma’ Heavy Armoured Car – 128pts
  • SdKfz 221 Light Armoured Car – 76 pts
    • Panzerbüchse – 10pts

Total Points 500

We’ll check in with how the four Generals fare in each of their battles over the coming weeks.

What is Tank War?

This supplement gives players the option to expand their games to a whole new level of armoured warfare. Recreate such famous engagements as the battle of Kursk with the scenarios, army options and special rules found in this book. You’ll also find guidance to have your tank crews gain experience as our gallant generals will be doing over the course of their campaign. Whether you want to add more armour to your existing armies or build an entirely armoured force, Tank War has you covered.

Our Tank War starter sets arm you with half a dozen tanks, a compact, convenient version of the Tank War rulebook, as well as dice, and templates – everything required for armour-on-armour action.

  1. It’s great to see Tank War getting some coverage in this format. It’s always been my favourite aspect of Bolt Action, especially with the experience system built in. I look forward to seeing how the forst engagements go.

  2. I remember when the Tank Wars supplement came out many years ago. It was and still is a great way to get your collection of tanks and get your battle on, in a skirmish sort of way. It’s great to see Warlord Games still giving love to their original back log material.

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