Bulge British Recon Formations

British Recce Troops 

Bulge British Recon Formations

By John Lee

For those who have read any of my previous articles, you will know that I have an affinity for reconnaissance formations, and with the release of Bulge British there are some more interesting choices to choose from that you can upgrade from the Recce Squadron from D-Day: British.  I wrote an article about the D-Day Recce Squadron previously here

For this release, there are now three formations available in the command cards - an updated Recce Squadron and two new formations – Armoured Car Squadron and Inns of Court Regiment – The Devil's Own!  There is also a fourth recon formation which is the Airbourne Recce Squadron.  You can find more information on this here.  Alongside these formations are three specific command cards that relate to recon units - Sawn Off Daimler, Matador Armoured Cars, and 12th Manitoba Dragoons Staghound. 

The Sawn-Off Daimler command card replaces the standard 2 x Daimler (2pdr) and 1 x Dingo (MG) unit with 1 x Daimler (2pdr) and 2 x Dingo (MG) to represent Daimlers with their turrets removed.  No Little John Adapter allowed – for zero points. 

Sawn-Off Daimler

Matador Armoured Cars

 The Matador Armoured Cars command card lets you add an additional troop of the AEC III Matador Fire Support vehicles to the formation.  With the same armour as the Staghound, it is armed with a bigger 75mm gun that can either fire an artillery bombardment out to 48”, or AT10 direct fire out to 28”.  Take two for 4pts or three for 6pts.

The 12th Manitoba Dragoons Staghound command card upgrades your Daimler Armoured Cars in the troop to bigger, roomier, and better-armoured Staghound.  There are more MGs and better armour for 3pts per unit, and the 2pdr gun loses the Overworked rule. 

 12th Manitoba Dragoons Staghound

Starting with the Recce Squadron, this formation comprises the following units:

  • 1 Recce Squadron HQ 

  • 2-3 Daimler Recce Troop

  • 2-6 Universal Carrier Patrol

  • 0-1 Black Bull Motor Platoon

  • 0-1 Motor 6pdr Anti-tank Platoon

  • 0-1 3-inch Mortar Platoon

This is the same as the D-Day formation except you can now take Daimler Recce Troops and the Black Bull Motor Platoon option.  The Daimler Recce Troop is a variant of the Daimler Armoured Car Troop and is flexible in that you can choose the configuration of the troop itself.  There are three options.  Two Daimlers (2pdr) and two Dingo (MG) for 3pts, four Daimler (2pdr) for 4pts, or 4 Dingo (MG) for 2pts.  I will almost always take option two – four Daimler (2pdr).  More firepower and I will max them out to three units.  Taking this formation gives you a minimum of five units and a maximum of thirteen units for the formation break.  This unit can hang around for a while, especially if you try to max it out.  For me, I would probably take all three Daimler (2pdr) troops.  Add to this three units of Universal Carriers.  Upgrade two of these units to include a PIAT for +1pt and .50cal for +1pt (NB: only applies to one team in the Patrol now – not all).  The third unit upgrades to PIAT Battery Section for +1pt to add an artillery battery for the formation in addition to the Mortars.  I would take the 6pdrs, Mortars and Motor Platoon as well.  Two other reasons I like this formation are that I can have a lot of units for smaller point games, or for larger games be able to use points elsewhere to either pair with another formation or have some bigger point units on the table.  Comets anyone? 

Looking at building a solid list with lots of tools:

Recce Squadron - 100pts

Ten units for the formation break with a mix of infantry for attack and defence along with the 6pdrs and two templates with the Mortars and Piat Battery Section.  M10 Archilles to provide the high-end AT and Chaffee’s to provide some fast AT10.  For a 50pt game we would be looking at something like this:

Recce Squadron - 50pts

Seven units for the formation break.  One artillery template plus an infantry unit along with the Comets with their AT14 to provide that high-end AT.  A potent force for the smaller-sized games.

Next up is the Armoured Car Squadron with the following units in the formation:

  • 1 Armoured Car Squadron HQ 

  • 2-5 Daimler Armoured Car Troop

  • 0-1 Black Bull Motor Platoon

  • 0-1 Matador Armoured Car Troop (from the command card)

What I love about this formation is that I can now take the heavy fire support vehicles in the formation that double as AT10 and an artillery template!  As well as this, we can replace all or some of the Daimlers in the HQ and troops with Staghounds which also have more armour, and an additional MG, and remove the overworked rule.  Taking this formation gives you a minimum of three units and a maximum of eight units for the formation break.

Let’s see how we can field this formation:

Armoured Car Squadron - 100pts

Maxed out the formation with eight units for the formation break.  Two artillery templates and the Challengers provide the AT15 with the Crocodiles to soften up targets before the Paras get in there and take the objective!  Let’s see how we can scale this down to 50pts:

Armoured Car Squadron - 50pts

By removing most of the support and the Motor Platoons half-tracks, we still have a maxed-out formation with infantry and an artillery template.  Three Challengers provide the high-end AT still.

Finally, we have the Inns of Court Regiment – The Devil's Own!  Units that comprise this formation are:

  • 1 Squadron HQ 

  • 1-3 Daimler Armoured Car Troop

  • 2-6 Dingo Recce Patrol

  • 0-1 Matador Armoured Car Troop

  • 0-1 Black Bull Motor Platoon

For something a bit different, this is a little like the Recce Squadron except that the Dingo Patrols replace the Universal Carrier Patrols, and the Matador Armoured Car Troop replaces the Mortar Platoon.  Also, there are no 6pdrs but all or some Daimlers can be upgraded to Staghounds.  Taking this formation gives you a minimum of four units and a maximum of twelve units for the formation break.  Let's look at fielding this unit with upgraded Staghounds:

Inns of Court Regiment - 100pts

Nine units for the formation break.  All upgraded to Staghounds.  Two units of Achilles with their AT15 goodness as well as two units of Armoured Infantry and two artillery templates!  Scaling down to 50pts:

Inns of Court Regiment - 50pts

By downgrading the Staghounds to Daimlers and removing all support except for one unit of Archilles, we still have the same formation count, one unit of infantry and one artillery template!

With this release, I have options to upgrade my existing Recce Squadron to all Daimlers and I have the option to run the two new formations with options to upgrade to Staghounds and run AEC Matador Fire Support vehicles.  Plenty of mix and match to suit everyone’s playstyle and points.

Happy list building!