WDBS - What does bear say is a Soviet centric perspective on all things Team Yankee and Flames of War. In this first episode we examine Free nations!
Free Nations Infantry
The book contains a surprising amount of content. It includes the full French army, the dutch and the ANZAC forces. Now despite all the hype, As Soviet commanders we must discount the things that wont affect our battle plans and what will. The main components of what we will be doing today are to look at the infantry options that the free nations bring!
1.1 Dutch Infantry Firepower
Firstly, lets take a look at the Dutch infantry. They seem to follow the US orbat. They prefer the Dragon to the Milans and hence pose no serious threat to our armour elements! The lesser range of this system will cause considerable issues even when trying to threaten our support vehicles behind the front line. Their gustavs can threaten our MBTs in close range.
1.2 Size and holding power
They come with stock 5 and 7 stand options. The YPR come with 2 additional dragons. Infantry size is key when determining their holding power, only a desperate foe would leave an infantry strongpoint untouched. The ability of the unit to affect forces if and when bypassed plays a large part on whether they have to be eliminated.
The smaller unit at 5 stands is very easily overcome and thus gets an average rating where holding power is concerned. Bear determines this by the number of hits that can be statistically given in a pinned situation against soviet infantry. In this case, Pinned infantry Dutch infantry can reliably give 5 hits against Soviet charges if they have taken no casualties and are pinned (MGs do 4 and the Gustavs do 1) Dragons can't fire so they get discounted.
The large platoon can do an impressive 6.78 hits for charges under the same circumstances. This means they are likely to throw back smaller assaults but certainly not the large platoons that our Motor rifle companies are famous for.
The dutch seem to be a bargain army, they mimic the Germans with their Leopard 2s and the British with their Infantry. In both cases, they give up certain ratings to justify the discounts. In this case, they become unreliable in assaults. Dutch infantry have a 4+ counterattack rating. this means its a 50% chance that after being engaged, they are just as likely to fall back then to continue the assault and inflict some casualties on the enemy.
So that being said, We would give the Dutch infantry a fairly bad rating for assault. statistically, they would inflict a total of 3.33 stands of casualties for the large platoon and 2.82 for the small platoon. assuming noone got knocked out in the initial charge of the enemy.
1.4 What does Bear say
2.1 French infantry firepower
Ok its time to stop whining about the Gustavs that have negated our tank assaults. I introduce the APILAS. A french made close infantry support AT weapon. Able to take on our MBTs from the front, their 16 inch range seem to be the only impediment to them being a real killer. While the Milan is made by the french, they dont seem to go as heavy on it as the other nations. Germany and British have 2-3 in each platoon wherelese the French seem to bring one with the VAB transports and 2 in the AMX-10s. The trade off being that the AMX-10s only have a maximum of 7 stands (9 after you add the milans). While they dont have many of them, they certainly do have tools for most ranges and enemies.
2.2 French holding power
While you might not be impressed with their lack of AT, the french bring the back up to last out an entire battle and never be charged. For the VAB armed platoons, they start at 5 FAMAS stands and can be up to 7 stands. thats 21 MG shots or 14 if pinned! 14 MG shots means an average of 9.24 Hits on Soviet infantry (#failedcharge).
While it might be funny that the French have a 5+ morale (for nothing other than their terrible reputation at wars) getting them there will require an average of 195 AK-47 or equivalent rounds. I assume they are dug in but not Gone to ground.
195 shots @ 5+ to hit = 64 hits
64 hits @ 3+ infantry save = 21 failed saves
21 Firepower checks @ Ak-47 5+ = 7 dead stands
Their counter attack rating and rally rating reflect their poor ability to recover from status such as pinned and to stay in the fight for the ground they are meant to hold.
2.3 French infantry Assault
The vast amount of Regular FAMAS teams does give them a very big edge, hitting on an unmodified 4+ is certainly better than the 5+ that weapon teams have to hit at. 7 of them certainly don't hurt your chances. An average wound output of the French hits an impressive 4.2 for its largest combination and 2.1 for the smallest configuration (the smaller option of the AMX-10s.
We can use these ratings because short of a disaster, the french will get to decide when they charge as anybody attempting to charge is likely to be repelled.
2.4 What does Bear say
ConclusionThe French seem to have a doctrine of immediate withdrawal. They know they dont have the AT to bring you down, so conduct a fighting withdrawal. I mean even when pinned, 16 shots WILL pin soviet infantry charging through smoke. The Dutch, like their German betters, can be overrun fairly easily. This ends the first part of a multi series Infantry focused WDBS. We will, as the series continues start to rank all the Infantry units.