Sunday, 5 February 2017

IRON MAIDEN: Getting Started With The British

Back in October of 2016, IRON MAIDEN was released for the World War III game Team Yankee. As part of the launch, we were asked to build and paint an army showcasing the new models that would be coming out. My first task was to decide exactly what kind of force to collect. Being relatively new to 15mm historical wargaming and Team Yankee as a whole, my list won’t be as slick as some of the other guys in the office who have been playing Flames Of War (the WWII big brother to Team Yankees Cold War gone Hot WWIII setting) for many years. In fact, this will be my
first ever game and the synergies between the squadrons and units I choose may not be the best. However, that is all part of the fun and long term appeal of such games: trying new combinations, seeing how they fare on the battlefield, and painting new models to try out.

Sitting down with the IRON MAIDEN rulebook and a cold drink, I read through the army lists and looked at what models were being released first. In every game system I play, I always go for themed, story driven forces as opposed to best combination armies, or most powerful units. I guess I'm one of the "fluffy" players; a narrative gamer, not a competitve one.

This works well for me as I've never been one to be able to trot out game stats on the fly, or discuss the merits of one weapon over another. If I like the models and can spin a yarn about why I chose them, they're in!
Choosing an army in Team Yankee is pretty straight forward - another tick in my box. The books detail several formations for each of the different armies (the Team Yankee rulebook details the US and Soviet forces; Leopard has the West Germans and Iron Maiden the British). These formations comprise of different Troops or units, some being compulsory.
For example in my Armoured Squadron I have the following options:
  • 1 Armoured Squadron HQ
  • 2-4 Chieftain Armoured Troops
  • 0-1 Swingfire Guided Weapons Troop
  • 0-1 Scorpion Recce Troop
  • 0-1 FV432 Mechanised Platoon
  • 0-1 Abbot Field Battery
The best way of starting an army in Team Yankee is the army box deal, no matter which faction you've chosen. For the British that is Charlie's Chieftains.
This comes with 5 Chieftain Tanks, enough for a HQ unit and two Troops of 2 tanks, but that doesn't seem enough so I went with two army boxes: TEN tanks and 4 Lynx Helicopters ( which I'll talk about later). That gives me Commander Nathaniel Rush in his HQ tank and three full Chieftain Armoured Troops, easily fulfilkling the compulsory two slots.
If I equip all the tanks with Stillbrew armour, they get increased armour to the front but it makes it slightly harder for them to cross difficult ground - a worthy sacrifice I think, especially as the newbie in the group I expect to take lots of hits in my dash forward to engage the enemy. That's 70pts spent already - on just ten models!
Next up, I wanted to add some Infantry. I've always liked the look of 15mm Flames Of War Infantry models, so getting some British foot sloggers was a priority. In this instance it would be a Mechanised Platoon with 4 stands of GPMG teams with 66mm anti tank; 3 stands of Carl Gustav anti-tank teams and 1 2" mortar team stand, all with their FV432 transports.
My tactical thinking was pretty much: "they'll be able to secure and hold objectives, or clear out any towns and villages." - plus I like the idea of seeing the FV432 APC's trundling down the road amidst a barrage of explosive artillery.
Matt kindly geave me the models for two Milan Teams (four actually - we'd split the box of Mechanised Company between us) meaning I could add them to the Platoon and use the remaining plastic FV432 for another two points.
That's 9 points for the Infantry - 79 total.
Now to add the support elements, and this comes in the form of the four Lynx Helicopters from the army boxes. Support forces are chosen from those available to the formation you have, and I'm allowed up to 2 flights of Lynx Helarm Helicopters. 12 points nets me 4 of these which I've split into the two flights, allowing me to target multiple objectives in a single turn, perhaps harassing enemy positions down the flanks.
Adding these to my force brings the total points now spent to 91. I'm a little short of the standard sized game value of 100, but those remaining nine points could be filled out as:
  • FV432 Mortar Platoon (4) +2 points
  • Scorpion Recce Troop (4) +4 points
  • Abbot Filed Battery (2) +3 points
This gives me 19 vehicles (10 tanks, 4 helicopters, 5 APCs) and 10 Infantry stands to paint. First though I need to assemble and prime them all.

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