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Mid War Romanian Light Tanks

Mid War Romanian Light Tanks
with John Lee
When I got back into the hobby several years ago, I started out with an Early War German Panzer 38(t) force. I think the Czech designed tanks were a good all-round tank for that period and for Mid War they are still useful but now they fall into that Light Tank Spam category which is popular amongst players. The Romanians were lucky (or unlucky) to run both the R-2 (LT VZ 35 or 35(t)) and T-38 (LT VZ 38 or 38(t)) tanks, with the R-2 being much more numerous in their armoured forces. 

To supplement these light tanks, the Romanians also have access to the T-3 (Panzer III) and T-4 (Panzer IV) tanks to add some extra firepower.

The Romanians have a couple of special rules to be aware, especially for tanks and are rated Confident Careful.  The first rule is “Peasant Army”. This rule is “Each unit has two columns on their unit cards for Motivation and Skill – Standard and Elite.  At the start of the game, roll a die and on a 5+ use the Elite column.”  So, each unit that you roll a 5+ on (either at start of the game or as they come on from reserve), you have a better Last Stand rating of 4+ and skill of Trained rather than Green or Veteran rather than Trained.  

Mid War Romanian Light Tanks

The second rule that applies to the Light Tanks is the “Armoured Reserve” rule. This rule is “In missions with Deep Reserves, you may only field one Armoured Reserve Tank Unit, one Tank Unit with Front Armour of 3 or more, or one Aircraft Unit on the table at the start of the game.”.  This affects both the R-2 and T-38.

The third rule specific to all tanks in this article is the “Protected Ammo” rule. Tanks with this rule have a better remount rating – which in Mid War is useful – especially when up against other Light Tank or Armoured Car based armies.

Onto the light tanks themselves now, the R-2 tank has FA2 SA1 TA1 with a remount of 3+.  The armour will stand up only to light weapons but with a 3+ remount, if your opponent fails their firepower test, you have a great chance to get your tank back in action next turn.  Its main armament is a 3.7cm gun with a 24” range and AT6 FP4+.  This is useful against enemy light armour and armoured cars but has the rule of “Overworked” which means if you move and fire, it’s a +1 to hit your targets. This tank also comes a ROF4 MG which in a platoon of three tanks gives you twelve shots to try and pin dug in infantry and gun teams or destroy any infantry in the open. It’s also a slow tank as well with a tactical move of 8”, terrain dash of 10”, cross country 14” and road dash of 16”. Cross check of 3+ which is standard for tanks.  Three of these tanks cost 4pts for a platoon or the HQ tank is 1pt for one tank.

The T-38 in the game is almost identical to the R-2 having the same Gun, MGs, Front Armour and Top Armour.  The other stats are identical. The differences are that the side armour is SA2 not SA1 and it’s a faster tank with a tactical move of 10”, terrain dash of 12”, cross country 16” and road dash of 20”. You can either use this tank as a single platoon (it’s a support option in the force diagram) or a run a formation of them (see below).  A platoon of three sets you back 5pts and a formation HQ (also of three tanks) costs 5pts.


Onto the formations now and there are four tank formations available to the Romanians in Mid War and the Light Tanks can make up at least half of the Tank strength or more in the formation if desired.   They are:

  • R-2 Light Tank Company
  • T-3 Medium Tank Company
  • T-4 Medium Tank Company
  • T-38 Light Tank Company

Before exploring each one in more detail, lets cover off some command cards that can be applied specifically to some or all these formations or units.

The first is “Clever Tactics”. It costs 3pts, applies to any Romanian Tank Company.This card allows your HQ Unit to pass Tactics tests for Movement Orders on 3+.  Very handy as your base skill is Green 5+ unless you roll Elite and are trained.

The second is “Every Shot Counts”. It costs 3pts and applies to a T-3 or T-4 Medium Tank Platoon.  This card allows your Unit Leader to re-roll one failed roll To Hit in each Shooting Step.  Another useful card depending on what points you have available.

The third is “Precise Gunner”.It costs 2pts and applies to R-2, T-3, or T-4 Medium Tank Company HQ. This card allows the Formation Commander to re-roll one failed Firepower Test during the Shooting Step. A useful card to ensure that whatever you are trying to remove – gets destroyed rather than just bailed out or if dug in infantry or gun teams, nothing.


Onto the first formation, the R-2 Light Tank Company which is comprised of:

Mid War Romanian Light Tanks

So, with one tank in the HQ and the ability to take a minimum of two platoons and a maximum of five platoons, you could max them out to sixteen tanks!  A maxed formation costs 21pts and has six units for the formation break!  Plenty of room left to take some interesting support options including allied German heavy tanks.  Now as the final slot can either be a Light Tank or Medium Tank platoon, you could swap out three R-2s for either three T-3s or T-4s.  This gives your formation a bit more oomph by having FA5 AT9/AT10 firepower.

For me, there are three options to run this formation and will look at 105pt lists:

  1. Maxed out R-2s with allied German Panthers
  2. Maxed out R-2s with in formation T-3s or T-4s
  3. Paired with another Romanian Formation

Mid War Romanian Light Tanks

Sixteen tanks in six platoons for the formation break. You have spearhead with the Armoured Cars and two artillery templates with the 100mm howitzers and Stukas.  Armoured Rifles to provide even more MG firepower.  Romanian infantry assault on 3+!  Three German Panthers to provide that long range AT14 to take care of enemy tanks and allow your R-2s to do battle with the enemy spam or romp over their infantry.

Mid War Romanian Light Tanks

The second list is like the first in that we have swapped out a R-2 platoon for a T-4 platoon combined with the “Every Shot Counts” command card, changed out the allied German Panthers for a single German Tiger and upgraded our infantry anti-tank capability with the “Vanator de Care” command card.  Instead of six AT14 shots you now have two AT14 and six AT10 shots. 

The third list will be paired with another Romanian formation, and you have a few options here. You could pair with another tank list (maybe the T-38 list for a double swarm?) or pair it with an infantry list to give it that all round capability. You can check out all the Infantry Formation options in this article I wrote about the Romanian Infantry.  For this example, I am going to pair it with the Reconnaissance Company as it gives it a bit of an armoured spearhead feel but still has some infantry elements.

Mid War Romanian Light Tanks

So, we have kept the core formation with the T-4s but removed the command card for them. We have introduced the Reconnaissance Company Formation.  You can read more about it in detail and the associated command cards for it in my Infantry article I wrote (link above), but basically, it’s a mix of Armoured Cars, Infantry (mounted on Motorcycles), Cavalry and the HQ riding in a Half Track!  The infantry and cavalry, both being mounted gives you the ability to move faster or come on from reserve at speed.  Need to defend before counterattacking? No problem, both can dismount at the start of the game or at the start of a movement phase in your turn.  Both platoons have the Anti-tank command cards as well as another called “Scout Ahead” which gives each platoon the ability of gone to ground whilst moving. Two armoured card platoons allow you to have a wider spearhead bubble or create them in different places (where allowed).  A maxed-out formation of five platoons for the formation break. In support, you have the two artillery templates (one is the Stuka flight) and we round it out with the Pak 40 AT gun platoon giving you six AT12 shots to go along with your T-4s AT10 shots. The Soft Skin card is in case you need to move the Pak 40s or bring them in from reserve.

There are so many permutations with pairing the R-2 formation with another formation or allowing you to take the big weapons like allied Panthers and Tigers.


 

Now onto the T-3 Medium Tank Company which is comprised of:

Mid War Romanian Light Tanks

If you take the black boxed T-3s and the choose all R-2 for the grey boxes, then you are looking at taking a mix of seven T-3s and nine R-2s.  All for 61pts (without any command cards that could be applied). That is still sixteen tanks on the field and seven have AT9 FP3+ with HEAT.  

Mid War Romanian Light Tanks

A maxed-out formation six platoons for the formation break. Only one artillery template but you could squeeze in a cheap second one of four 120mm mortars for 4pts if you dropped the “Precise Gunner” and “Scout Ahead” command cards.  You have AT12 with the Pak 40s and a command card to move them if required.  Armoured Cars for spearhead and Armoured Rifles to round out the list. This list would suit those people who want a bit more oomph with their tanks by balancing out the Light and Medium tanks for their play style.


Next up is the T-4 Medium Tank Company which is comprised of:

Mid War Romanian Light Tanks

If you take the black boxed T-3s and the choose all R-2 for the grey boxes, then you are looking at taking a mix of seven T-4s and nine R-2s.  All for 61pts (without any command cards that could be applied). That is still sixteen tanks on the field and seven have AT10 FP3+ with a 32” range.

Mid War Romanian Light Tanks

A maxed-out formation six platoons for the formation break.  Only one artillery template (no spare points).  You have AT12 with the Pak 40s and a command card to move them if required.  Armoured Cars for spearhead and Motorised Rifles (not enough points for the Armoured ones) to round out the list.  This list would suit those people who want more oomph and reach with their tanks by balancing out the Light and Medium tanks for their play style.


Finally, the T-38 Light Tank Company (Command Card Formation) which is made up of:

  • 1 T-38 Light Tank Company HQ
  • 3-4 T-38 Light Tank Platoon

A maxed-out formation of five platoons is going to cost 25pts!  Fifteen T-38s on the table already.  You want to pair this formation with either the R-2 formation or an infantry (or even cavalry!) formation.  Let’s pair it with a Pioneer formation to give it an assault force feel.

Mid War Romanian Light Tanks

Two maxed out formations.  The Pioneers only have four units for the formation break but that is enough as the T-38 formation has five.  You have three assault infantry platoons with anti-tank command cards that can used to assault the enemy off the objective whilst trying to deal with your fifteen light tanks being supported by three AT10 tanks and three At12 guns with a movement card that can all be spearheaded by the Armoured Cars and an artillery template to suppress or remove enemy infantry and gun teams before the assault!

So, there you have it – four tank formation options to choose from with Light Tanks taking the spotlight.  Taking Romanian Light Tanks presents some alternatives to the DAK Armoured Car or the Italian L6 Light Tank spam lists and can provide some flavour by adding some unique units. I hope this has been of some help.  Happy List Building!
~John


Last Updated On Friday, November 5, 2021 by Luke at Battlefront