The German half of the Band of Brothers Starter Set is an all plastic force containing:
- x2 Grenadier sprues (12 Infantry) – Plastic
- Sd.Kfz. 251/10 Ausf. D – Plastic
The We Don’t Have Many Options List
|Standard Reinforced Platoon|
|1st Lt (Assault Rifle) – Veteran – 90||90pts|
|Heer Veteran Grenadier squad – 5 men – 65pts|
x2 LMG – 40
| Heer Veteran Grenadier squad – 5 men – 65pts|
x2 LMG – 40
|Medic – Veteran||30pts|
|Sd.Kfz. 251/1 Hanomag – Veteran – 107|
Rear Pintle MMG – 15
|Total – 5 Order Dice||452pts|
- Rifle – 6
- LMG – 4
- Assault Rifle – 1
- MMG – (2)
(x) denotes a vehicle-mounted weapons.
Notes and Analysis
The objective of this list is two part – 1) use as many of the components from the Starter Box as possible and 2) make a List that is an ‘even’ match to the US side. Please in mind, this List was written using only the content of the Starter Box.
Although I am a fan of this starter set overall (it’s thematic and the price is right) the German side is…not great.
The BoB Box gives us five German Order Dice, so let’s use them. But, with only 12 infantry models, it’s a short list of options for how to use those five Order Dice. To further explain, 1 of the 12 infantry must be our Officer (in this case, a 1st Lt). And 10 of them must be our two required infantry squads as the minimum squad size is 5. That’s 11 of the 12 already slotted leaving us with 1 (one!) extra body. If we want to use all five Order Dice, a Medic is really the only option (I suppose a Chaplain is another viable option, but not with the bits included).
What can we build with the bare minimum number of infantry that will stand a chance against 24 Stubborn US Paratroopers? LMGs, as many as we can take. I’ve gone with two squads of five (we really can’t go any larger) but both squads are Vet and pack two LMGs each. That’s 10 shots at 36″ per squad. That amount of small arms should give your US opponent a bit of pause before they go rushing headlong into the open. What else can we do to support these two infantry squads? How about some MMGs?
The half-track includes parts to build it with a Panzerbüchse 41 Squeeze-bore AT Gun but with our opponent being a 100% infantry force, the six forward-pintle MMG shots are a much more effective choice. So now we have a total of 16 MMG/LMG shots at 36″. Keep the half-track close to your men, it’s an empty Transport and you don’t want it getting rushed by an enemy unit. The goal here is to create a gun line. Just a wall of lead you are throwing down range.
Final support for this list is the Medic and the Lt. Keep that both within 6″ of your two squads. You can stay back from the front, just make sure both your Lt and Medic are within 6″ of the back of the squads. You’ll only be taking causalities from small arms fire, so your Medic will always have a chance to save your Vets (unless it’s in an assault). You just need to save one man with an LMG and your Medic will have paid for himself. The Lt can hang back, keep in range of your squads to provide the morale bonus and “Your men! Snap to Action!” ability.
As far as tactics go, this list is built for one thing and one thing only – hold the line. You’ve got four LMGs and two MMGs mounted on the half-track. These German weapons out range everything in the US force (with the exception of the US Sniper Team). Get into cover and start blasting. Those two Grenadier squads are small but mighty. They put out 10 LMG shots a turn with a supporting rifle shot. You can deal some serious damage to infantry, even Vet US infantry. Positioning will be critical to your success. If those little five-man LMG squads get caught out in the open – that will be the end of them.
Only once you have sufficiently brought down the American numbers should you even consider making a move. You need to bring the fight close to even before attacking up close and personal. The US have a lot of SMGs and those SMGs mean Tough Fighter in close combat. You do not, repeat do not, want to engage in CC unless you outnumber your target.
If you want to expand your Germans from the BoB Starter, maybe push it up to 1,000pts, I would recommend a few additional items:
- Get more infantry – The Band of Brothers Starter Set is good. It’s fun, it’s thematic, it’s easy for new players to visualize and grasp. But my word do you need some more Germans. Only 12 Infantry is laughable. Pickup a box of plastic Grenadiers, Waffen-SS or Fallschirmjäger to expand your collection three-fold. All three of those boxes are solid picks with some great models.
- Artillery Support – Indirect fire is one of those things I never want to leave out of a list. A light or medium howitzer and/or Medium Mortar are both excellent picks. You will not regret brining either to the field.
- Ditch the Half-Track, get a Truck – If you want a Transport, pick up an Opel Blitz or similar. Trucks are better than half-tracks. Hate to say it, because half-tracks are so damn cool, but it’s the reality of the situation. A transport needs to be able to get you where you need to go quickly and cheaply. Trucks can do that, half-tracks cannot.
- Add a Tank and/or Armored Car – This is one of the main reason folks start a German force – the Big Cats. Panzer IVs are one of the best Tanks in the game. The Puma and SdkFz. 222 are kings of their respective classes of Armored Car. You are, quite literally, spoiled for choice when it comes to German vehicles and the hardest part is often picking just one to bring with your army.