Disclaimer: This article is the personal opinion of the writer based off FOW V4 rules and speculation from other sites and information publicly available.
With the street date of 7th December announced for Team Yankee version 2, the release of the new rules is just around the corner and players can look forwards to gaming in V2 soon.
In this article, we look at the upcoming changes to the rules for support units in artillery and aircraft, and who the top winners and losers are!
NOTE: There are some unconfirmed changes to the rules so the usual caveats apply. These unconfirmed changes will be marked in italics.
Artillery in V1 was much maligned for being next to useless in it's intended role in digging out infantry position. That has changed in V2, and well placed artillery strikes will be the bane of dug in infantry anywhere on the map.
Bringing the rules in line with Flames of War with some minor variation, artillery has several net buffs and one major debuff to balance the changes:
UNCONFIRMED: As with Team Yankee v1, any team leader, forward observer or formation CO can spot for artillery. (This is unlike the FOAN or FOW rules, where only COs and FOs can spot. We presume it is due to improved communications by the 1980s)
In addition, spotting at night does not require a roll to spot the point anymore, but there is a penalty of -1 to the score to range in.
- Ranging in
As with Flames of War, as long as the template touches any short or tall terrain, there will be a penalty of -1 to range in. This change affects Soviet artillery the most because of their horrible 5+ skill, and forces Soviet commanders to adopt a much more static, planned approach with a forward observer compared to their more skilled NATO counterparts which can range in bombardments ad-hoc on a tactical basis.
- Hitting enemy teams
The biggest awaited change for artillery, bombardments now hit all teams under the template on their base to hit value regardless of their concealed/gtg /out of LOS status. This means that artillery hits much easier than before and will be the go-to for pinning, if not outright removing dug-in infantry. In addition, instead of adding bonuses or minuses to hit, 6 or more guns now simply re-roll to hit and 2 or less guns now instead reroll successful hits.
The other hot topic, repeated bombardments now force saves to be rerolled for Infantry and unarmored vehicles. Effectively, staying still under a template is a death sentence for infantry and softskins, and commanders have to make hard decisions to either move to a safer spot or lose anywhere from 1-5 stands a turn to repeat bombardments.
*1915 flashbacks intensify*
The humble West German Panzermorser is now an uber infantry blender, combining the perfect storm of 3+ skill and firepower with a super cheap price tag
(3 points for 3 guns). Bring back flashbacks of the Somme with your superior artillery bombardments and watch as you vaporise any dug-in positions with ease.
+ super cost effective vs dug in infantry
+ high skill
+ Auto include in any WG list
Powered by Pole and Czech math
The new PACT heavy artillery of choice, the Polish/Czech DANA is the go-to red god of war for commie commanders. While certainly more expensive than NATO mortars, this heavy artillery piece promises to rain accurate death and destruction with acceptable skill (aided with a forward observer) and superb firepower of 2+ and, IF autoloaders remain unchanged, a +1 to hit bonus against anything in its grid square.
+ cost effective heavy artillery
+ 4+ skill
+ autoloaders (Unconfirmed)
*tongue click* N I C E
British commanders, while waiting for the MLRS rules, can enjoy their battery of Abbots which will delight in not only holding an objective, but also rain lead on any poor sods sitting under their 8 guns. While they lost the +2 bonus to hit, the battery of 8 guns is unique to the British and means that they can afford some casualties and still bombard targets with full efficiency with their 3+ skill and 4+ firepower.
+ cost effective and can babysit objectives
+ large platoon of 8 guns
+ excellent skill
1. Soviet/Iraqi/Iranian artillery
"Ivan what does this button do?"
Soviet/Iraqi/Iranian artillery officers now fail basic trigonometry and are unable to range in with any reliability without a spotter. As mentioned above, having skill 5+ means that spotting targets in terrain invariably means soviet commanders will be ranging in on 6+! This forces Soviet/Iraqi/Iranian markers to be very judiciously placed, as they will not be moved more than twice under the new spotting mechanic changes. If it helps, think of Soviet artillery as minefields rather than actual artillery in the role of area denial tools.
- abysmal skill rating
- cost inefficient (except Hails)
2. Deployable minefields
A major change to how Minefields work in V2 is that they no longer require a courage check to cross, a major nerf to the once feared CD templates. With this change, minefields can now be crossed willy nilly and can be easily cleared or bypassed. WG and USA players will sulk a little as they no longer have a reason to purchase the minefield upgrades for their launchers.
- Minefields no longer effective vs intended targets (tanks) and can be easily bypassed.
Previously in V1, Aircraft were seen as inherently unreliable and overly fragile, and most players simply eschewed the use of aircraft due to how they relied so much on a lucky roll. This aspect has not changed in V2, but there are several changes that improves aircraft survivability in the new edition. However, while being much tankier, salvo bombers also face the same challenges of their land-bound brethren in ranging in with some additional caveats that make it a major challenge to play. NOTE: information is quite sketchy as there is almost nothing available via the usual channels about aircraft, so take with a liberal pinch of salt.
As with FOW, Aircraft are always in good spirits as long as there is a single team left. Effectively this means that aircraft are immune to morale, and no longer care about casualties making them good to the last drop.
UNCONFIRMED: Aircraft can only spot their own bombing run, subject to all the artillery rules.
In addition, because ranged-in markers are removed if the teams are moved for any reason, salvo bombers will have to range in with every pass, making their bombardments wildly unreliable and making repeat bombardments impossible.
BRRRRRRT (actually don't do this, it gets you killed faster than you can say bacon)
Tank-hunter aircraft win the prize as the premier ATGM platform in V2. Because of the expected rise in heavy tank deployment, both the US A10 and the Soviet Frogfoot will see use as an instant delete button. Able to evade most SPAAG fire with their superior range, heavy ATGMs will demolish any tank unlucky enough to be in their crosshairs. 2-team squadrons are now viable as aircraft are now immune to morale and will prove to be a thorn in your opponents' sides if allowed to deploy unmolested.
+ immunity to morale
+ evades most SPAAGs with practice (Gepards included)
+ AT27 hard counter to heavy tanks (especially M1A1 / Challenger)
A Hind D?! Colonel, whats a Russian gunship doing here?
The much-feared Mi-24 Hind remains a top dog in V2. Utilised as deep strikers, a drop of these tank hunters will mulch most armor from the side.
+ AT23 is the sweetspot for Antitank values in V2
+ Available in ludicrous numbers for Afghansty lists
While not as flashy as their NATO counterparts, the Iraqi/Syrian Gazelle can be spammed in large numbers and bears the valuable Hunter-killer trait along with a potent HOT missile. Expect to see these pests a lot in V2.
+ AT23 is the sweetspot for Antitank values in V2
+ cheap and cheerful at 12 points for 4, up to 8 can be deployed!
1. Salvo aircraft (except British Harriers and WG Tornadoes)
Not actually a boss fight now.
Poor USMC harriers and other salvo bombers have severe issues with reliability. Although this is unconfirmed, I expect Salvo bombers to face issues with ranging in and hitting targets due to the large size of their template inevitably clipping terrain. Even with the improved survival rates of aircraft, I dont see salvo bombers being too useful except for the occasional hail-mary trench run in 1 out of every 6 games.
- inherently unreliable
- ranging in difficulties with salvo template
- need to re-range in every turn
As always, support is named exactly that for a reason, and players should use everything in moderation to get the most out of their template delivery systems. What are your personal winners and losers?
About the Writer:
Eddie is an avid painter who also enjoys anime, studying military history and hopes that Girls Und Panzer will come true one day so that everyone can resolve their differences with tank Airsoft.