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Stalin's Europe Harckocsizó Század:
Building a Hungarian Tank Company
by Andrew Duncan

We recently asked some of our playtesters to give us their thoughts on building armies from Stalin's Europe. This week Andrew Duncan examines the Harckocsizó Század, the Hungarian Tank Company. - Editor.

My main interest in Flames Of War is gaming with my friends and pitting my skills against them. We all have different playing styles and list preferences making for some great contests.  I enjoy the results of painting but not the process itself, so when a new book comes out I’m looking at the lists in it and whether they have something there that suits my style of play.

Learn more about what's in the pages of Stalin's Europe here...

Read the Stalin's Europe Design Notes here...
When I was asked to write an article about developing a list from Stalin’s Europe I was quite excited.  I’d playtested a lot of the lists and leapt at the opportunity to talk about the process I go through to build a force.

Stalin’s Europe offers the gamer a great variety of lists.  You can take lots of Russian tanks, including the Soviet Emcha 76mm Sherman, or infantry.  The German lists let you take the Panzer IV/70, the Poor Man’s Panther.  With the Romanians you can have heaps of basic infantry, which can also randomly be Veterans, supported by twelve 100mm howitzers and six of the fantastic TAC 43 Resita 75mm Anti-tank guns with AT 13.  It’s a difficult choice.

Hungarian Panthers on the prowl
In the end I chose the Hungarian Harckocsizó Század or Tank Company.  This force offers some great options to build an army, particularly one that operates on the synergy between its elements.  I can take heavy tanks, medium tanks, reconnaissance, artillery and some excellent infantry options.  And I like to attack, Huszar!
The Creation of an Army

I’ve created two lists to work though; 1000 and 1500 points.  Panthers are a bit cheaper with the Hungarians and I will have to have a few in both lists.  With Front Armour 10, AT 14, FP 3+, 32”/80cm range and Wide Tracks it dominates the table against the Allies and inspires fear in opponents.  The model is also fantastic.
Panther A in German Service
Nimrod Self-propelled Anti-aircraft tank (HU160) I also want an even number of platoons so I can have half my force on the table for missions with the Reserves rule.  If I can manage it I also want infantry, artillery, reconnaissance and an option for smoke.  I’ll also try and fit in a couple of the Nimrod Self-propelled Anti-aircraft guns too.
The 1000 Point Force

For 1000 points I’ll start with a Panther HQ and a platoon of Panthers, that’s 550 points.  This gives me some powerful Anti-tank.  With the Company Commander an independent team, I can deploy him on an alternate flank if necessary.  I’ll meet my other minimum requirement with three Turan Is for 180 points.  These are a cool model but not a match for other Late-war medium tanks.  However, their high ROF means they are a great support for the Panthers in dealing with gun teams and dug in infantry.
The Turan I
I still need two more platoons to get me up to four and I have 270 points left.  I need some infantry so will take a Motorised Rifle Platoon with three squads for 135 points.  This gives me seven Confident Veteran infantry teams for assaulting.  On defence they can hold ground protecting the flanks of my Panthers and giving me time to wear down the assault power of the advancing Russian hordes!  They’re not a big unit but with close support from the Panthers, can keep infantry assaults at bay.  I’ll also upgrade them to include a Command Panzerfaust SMG team for 10 points so they can finish off what is left of any Russian tank companies that make it past the Panthers, 145 points all up.
The Toldi II I now have 125 points left and will use them to get a platoon of three Toldi IIs and upgrade one to a Toldi IIa for 10 points.  These are great reconnaissance tanks with just enough front armour to protect them from small arms fire. 

Scouting ahead of the main force they can protect my infantry from ambushes.  Significantly they can use their Eyes and Ears ability to remove the Gone to Ground from dug in infantry so my tanks can shoot my infantry into assault.
Harckocsizó Század: 1000 Point Army List
Company HQ
185 points
with one Panther A
Combat Platoons
Harckocsizó Platoon
365 points
with two Panther A
Harckocsizó Platoon 180 points
with three Turan I
Weapons Platoon  
Light Harckocsizó Platoon
125 points
with two Toldi II
with one Toldi IIa
Support Platoon  
Motorised Rifle Platoon
145 points
with three sections
with Panzerfaust upgrade
Total Points:
1000 points
Using The 1000 Point Force

My plan on attack will be for the Toldi IIs to scout ahead whilst the Panthers engage enemy guns and keep tanks away from my assault force.  The assault force will be the Motorised Rifle Platoon advancing making use of cover to a jumping off point for the assault. They will be supported by close fire support from the Turan Is.

On defence the Motorised Rifle Platoon will deploy around the objectives supported by the Panthers with the other platoons in reserve to come on and mop the remnants of the assault force.

A pair of Hungarian Panther A tanks
The 1500 Point Force

At 1500 points I can take more of the great choices offered in the list.  I also might be able to get some artillery and smoke in.  At this level I will need six platoons to compete with other tournament forces and of course my regular playtest opponents, who are a pretty deadly bunch.

I’ll start with the Panthers again.  This time I’ll have an HQ Panther and two platoons of two.  I am sure the crews of my Turan Is will be impressed with their new rides!  That’s 915 points.

I’ll keep the Motorised Rifle Platoon and the three Toldi IIs.  I won’t upgrade any of the Toldi IIs to the Toldi IIa this time to save 10 points.
I now need to get some artillery so I will take the Hungarian 105mm 37M howitzers.  I’d like the extra firepower of the 149mm 14/31M howitzers but the 105mms can fire a smoke barrage.  This could be important to give my infantry the cover they need to get through defensive fire and assault onto a vital objective.

Lastly I’ll take a section of two Nimrods.  I’m not too worried about enemy air support given I have a small force and can spread out.  According to Hungarian legend, Nimrod was the great grandson of Noah and a mighty hunter.  They will definitely be able to shoot off Sturmoviks with ROF 4 and FP 4+.  The high firepower also means with a 24”/60cm range they can deal with light vehicles and dug in guns and infantry.

The Hungarian 105mm 37M howitzer
Harckocsizó Század: 1500 Point Army List
Company HQ 185 points
with one Panther A  
Combat Platoons
Harckocsizó Platoon 365 points
with two Panther A  
Harckocsizó Platoon 365 points
with two Panther A  
Weapons Platoons
Light Harckocsizó Platoon 115 points
with 3 Toldi IIs
Self Propelled Anti-Aircraft Platoon 115 points
with 2 Nimrods
Support Platoons
Motorised Rifle Platoon
145 points
with three sections  
with Panzerfaust upgrade  
Motorised Artillery Battery
210 points
with four 105mm 37M howitzers
Total Points:
1500 points
A Hungarian Command team Using The 1500 Point Force

When attacking in an attack defend mission I’ll use the Panthers to take out enemy tanks and guns while the rest of the force screens and provides covering fire for the infantry advance.  I’ll use my Huszar! move to get my infantry across dead ground and into assault once I’ve worn down the defences.

The Toldi IIs will advance aggressively to push back any ambushes or race down a flank to spread out a smaller more elite force and divert them from my main thrust.  The artillery will seek to smoke or suppress any enemy units that can threaten my infantry.

The Nimrods will keep enemy air at bay and provide covering fire on the enemy’s forward gun teams. If I am facing tanks on defence the infantry will hold ground whilst the Panthers deal with enemy tanks.  The rest of the force will use cover to stay alive and eat away at the softer support units.  With their assault units broken down the Russians will struggle to get an assault in.  Against an infantry heavy assault force I may deploy the 105mms to bombard infantry advancing over No-man's land.
Mission Specific Tactics

In Free-For-All the Panthers will deploy next to either objective with the Commander placed centrally to support whichever flank needs it.  The infantry will hold one objective and the artillery the other.  Reconnaissance will look for opportunities to get into the enemy’s endzone and create havoc and the Nimrods will look for soft targets of opportunity from the security of cover.  If I am really heavily outnumbered I may refuse one flank with the infantry set out in depth to delay assaults and artillery behind them.
The Nimrod
The combined fire from the Panthers will then take out the other flank and roll them up from the side. The toughest mission for this kind of force is Encounter and defending in missions like Hasty Attack where the defender has Delayed Reserves.  In these missions the Panthers really have to do the heavy lifting and to survive will need to make maximum use of cover till reserves arrive.  Luckily they have the armour and skill rating to do it.
HS 129B3 Other Point Totals

Other popular points totals for tournaments in New Zealand are 1650 points and 1750 points.  For 1650 points I would upgrade the Motorised Rifle Platoon to a three section Motorised Pioneer Platoon with an upgrade to a Command Panzerfaust SMG team and a Supply Truck. An extra 150 points exactly. 
For 1750 points I would add Air Support in the form of German HS 129B3s and lose the supply truck from the Pioneers.  The HS 129B3s can take out heavy tanks, especially one play testers Churchill Crocodiles, and any enemy artillery that might threaten my Panthers.

~ Andrew.

Learn how to build a Feldherrnhalle Panzergrenadierkompanie here...

Last Updated On Wednesday, December 1, 2010 by Blake at Battlefront