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Support Unit - Bunkerflak

Support Unit - Bunkerflak
With John Lee
With the release of the Eastern Front Compilation, we have been re-introduced to some of the experimental vehicles that were designed and prototyped but not necessarily saw action. There are three main ways that these vehicles can be used in the game. Some are in a Formation and can be fielded as a Formation itself or as Support Unit using the Formation Support rules. Secondly, some are in the Force Diagram as Support Units and finally we have a use for the “WildCard” slot on the Force Diagram. If one of these new units is a “WildCard” unit, then it can be fielded in this slot. This article focuses on the Bunker Flak which is a Support Unit option that can occupy two slots in the force diagram and is one of the new units that saw action.

The 8.8cm FLAK18 Sfl ‘Bufla’ came about due to a need to provide a mobile platform to support taking out fortified positions from long range. The FLAK18 anti-aircraft gun was selected for the task and mounted on Daimler-benz DB10 12-tonne half-tracks. The gun was mounted on a simple platform over the tracks and the driver in a low armoured cab. There were ten of these produced and first saw action in Poland and France. In 1942 there were four left and they saw action in the Caucasus alongside the Dicker Max and Sturer Emil heavy tank-hunters. The advantage of taking one or two platoons of Bunker Flak is taking more mobile AT14 platforms to complement taking Marders, Hornisses’s or 8.8cm Anti-tank or AA guns.

So, let’s look at stats for this beast. Looking at the vehicle itself, it has FA1 SA0 TA0.  So, it’s only lightly armoured but this is offset by its 8.8cm gun which has a range of 40” and with AT14 can safely stay as far back as it needs in cover, to maximise its effectiveness.  It has no MG for close defence work so make sure that there is some infantry support for them.  It has a stationary ROF of 2 and forward firing but cannot move and fire – you will need to use your movement orders such as Blitz to do so. Now as it’s a large heavy half-track, it is slow and that is reflected in its speed.  8” move for tactical, 10” terrain dash, 14” cross country dash and a 24” road dash.  This is offset though by a 3+ cross check – useful in rough terrain!

Support Unit - Bunkerflak

From a unit perspective, they are Fearless Careful Veteran. Best armour in the game is Careful – combined by operating at long range and in cover – much harder to hit.  Being Veteran – you are going to blitz followed by a Shoot and Scoot a lot.  Even though they are Fearless, they will not do well in assaults on a 6 or a counterattack of a 6+.  Each Bunker Flak costs 6pts and you can have one or two in the unit, and you can field up to two units of them.

I would recommend taking take one in a platoon.  If you take one, use it to snipe the enemy and make it a focal point for them, whilst the rest of your force goes after the objective, or if you are taking another unit of Marder’s or other Tank-Hunters, you could take one to protect the other flank.  Taking two is troublesome. Lose one and you are testing.  If you have one – it doesn’t matter – you lose it – it’s gone. They should work in tandem with Infantry or Armoured Cars to protect and screen them.

This unit can be used with any German force you want to put on the table.  Let’s look at a sample 100pt force to see how it could fit together. The Reconnaissance Company I feel would be a good fit:

Support Unit - Bunkerflak

 

A mix of infantry, recon, mortars and armoured guns with seven units for the formation break.  Two artillery templates with the mortars and Nebs.  Alongside the compulsory Marders for their AT12, we have two platoons of Bunker Flaks with a single vehicle each and a single Ferdinand to get your opponent to focus on it.  Put the Marders on one flank and the Bunker Flaks and Ferdinand on the other supported by Armoured Cars and Infantry.  This is a versatile formation and I feel the Bunker Flaks add to the flavour and character of it as they are half-tracks to go along with the masses of half-tracks in the formation!

 

The Bunker Flak comes in boxes of two with a Unit Card.  I would recommend getting one box as you could run two units of one.

 

The Bunker Flak is a great add on to the German force in my opinion and adds some flavour.  If you want another mobile AT14 for your German force – look no further.  I hope this has been of some help.  Enjoy!
~John Lee


Last Updated On Thursday, September 15, 2022 by Luke at Battlefront