So we’ve been playing for getting close to a year and I did a piece early on near the end of May about the pros and pluses of Axis, so I figured I’d do a another article in the same vein as sort of a “post-op debriefing” now that I’ve got some real experience playing the faction for a while.
We’ve got the best walkers in the game. This is somewhat opinion, but the general consensus is that Axis edges everyone else out in this department.
2 of our light walkers are comparable enough to Allied options, but we have the Hans. I rarely play one, but there’s no denying that nothing compares with what he’s capable of for a mere 25 points. Scout special rule, weapons for both soldiers and armor, and constant light artillery barrage.
In the heavy department we’ve the best there is hands down. There are cheaper options to fill the same roles, but nothing can compete with the firepower on the HPW VI. The SSU’s Mao Zedong is close to the Sturmkonig and 5 AP cheaper, but it has a lower Vehicle rating, less DC and rolls less dice in every situation. The Lavrentiy Beria and the Punisher are fairly close to the dreaded Konigsluther, but both still roll less dice than the massive 17.3 FPK, and while they both have Tank Killer the 17.3 has Penetrator which means less armor dice – which means more dead vehicles.
In the medium department our core rulebook options are solid but nothing terribly special. The Lothar and Ludwig are somewhat generic but server their respective roles well. The Luther and Loth both have charge and the ability to self repair and are somewhat inexpensive. Op:Zverograd gave us the MPW III Wotan and Flamm-Luther. Upping the ante to Vehicle 5, with an option for V6 on the Wotan. The Flamm-Luther outshines the allied Hot Dog in every way for 10AP more. The Wotan is regarded by many to be the best per point anti-tank purchase the game has to offer us. Op:Hades gave us the cheapest soldier transport walker so far. It’s simple, effective, and one of them still has a decent gun on it.
While not as obviously and simply potent as Phasers, Laser weapons are still great for showing off when you need them to once in a while. With the addition of Supercharged and High Vis Unit Upgrades in Op:Hades they only got better. Sigrid and Laser Grenadiers with High Vis nets about 7.3 hits on a sustained. The same unit with Supercharged nets almost 12, TWELVE hits on a sustained attack. A Wotan is capable of a potential 12 damage to a vehicle 7 on a lucky roll. HLG can punch 9 to 18 points of damage on a vehicle on good rolls. I wouldn’t ever tell you to rely on the extra laser rolls to get the job done, but remember that they will show up and they will screw your opponents day up when they do.
Apes and Zombies
Yes I am biased, we all know that. However the fact remains that they are fast, hard hitting units. The caveat is “when supported properly”. 20 dice out of a zombie unit at soldier 2 is no joke when they don’t have a chance to react to you closing in. Gorilla’s are extremely mobile, tough to put down at Soldier 3 and pack just as mean of a punch on a per model basis. This is all before remembering that you can’t shut either unit down without killing it to a man.
While Allied jump troops are regularly a pain in the ass, there’s no denying that Axis Schwer troops are harder to dislodge. Damage Resilient Soldier 3 in hard cover can take a blistering amount of incoming fire before breaking or being killed off. Whether it’s the new Jagd heavy weapons teams or good old Heavy Grenadier teams you can usually expect good mileage out of your soldier 3 investments as an Axis general. Just be wary of snipers and Phasers, as such lists will take your lunch money and leave you crying for mommy.
It is of my most esteemed opinion that outside of Winter’s Child the Axis have 2 of the most dangerous heroes in the game. Markus and Angela. Both of them have high destructive potential and are extreme force multipliers when attached to a respective unit. Anyone fielding at least one unit of Gorillas should be fielding Markus. He triples the units DC, adds more attacks and gives the potency of the Charge rule. Angela adds a few more wounds to a sniper unit keeping them alive longer, while they give her the wonderful boon of the spotter rule and the increased cover of “team”. Angie and a sniper team are capable of 3 kills a turn at 36 inches provided you roll well. All of which ignore cover AND armor. All of our heroes have a great addition to particular units, but if you’re not fielding one of the two above mentioned, you should be thinking about it.
Things to look forward to! We get a pilot, we got zombies with guns, and we get aircraft. Naturally I welcome any addition to the Blutkreuz style of play, especially so when it’s more varied zombies. The Horten HO-347 has been announced with both a fighter and bomber variant option, and you can probably make a safe bet that in either platform it’ll be the best thing in the sky. As I said early on if Germans do anything right, it’s build the best quality vehicles in the game.
If you want a generally tough as nails hard to put down play style that favors a high quality of troop and weaponry, then step up and join the righteous cause of the Axis bloc.