Bad boys, bad boys, whatcha gonna do? Whatcha gonna do when they come for you….
Can I confess something? It’s something that may get me put on a government blacklist by the internet bots at GCHQ, but it needs to be said;
I like the Waffen SS
Clearly in the vast majority of cases they were a group of racist, arrogant, frankly evil bastards; indoctrinated by the Nazi propaganda machine and quite often unhinged and sadistic to boot. A good proportion of the German people hated them from their involvement in Hitler’s rise to power, but everyone feared them because of that too, even their own comrades in the Heer.
The reason I like them is not because of this (obviously), but because they were relentless, driven, ruthless and utterly effective soldiers.
Man-for-man the Waffen SS were some of the best trained, best equipped, hardest fighting and most stubborn troops in Hitler’s army. They fought in nearly every theatre of the war and won many distinctions, able to fight on equal terms and often beat the best troops the allies had at their disposal.
In the later years, following Barbarossa and the campaign in the East, the SS became weaker and less experienced overall, despite retaining a solid core of hardened veterans. What they lost in skill however they made up for in fanaticism, and were a potent force to the end.
I figured then that I would need at least one squad in any German force I built, so here they are:
These are the generic squad of Late-War SS.
I’d really like to use a small reinforced platoon of just SS, probably supported by a tank, or mechanised, at some point in the future.
To that end I also painted an Oberlutenant (First Lieutenant) and a Medic:
In their first outing a week ago they basically won* the game for me. The Officer and medic admittedly got gunned down in turns 3/4 after being caught out by the fast moving Russians (damned tank riders!), so they didn’t really shine, but the 10-man SS unit sat on the objective for most of the game, refusing to budge and soaking up the pins despite being shot at every turn by multiple units.
Despite the heavy pressure they managed to kill;
- Most of a unit of Body-armoured engineers, or at least enough to render them a negligible threat for the rest of the game.
- They assaulted and killed a T34 with grenades, using the wreck as cover.
- They got counter-charged by a ‘pure-SMG’ unit of 8 men but defeated them with a loss of only 3 casualties thanks to some terrible rolling from the Ruskies.
At one point I think they had 5 pin markers on them.
When the final turn finished they were basically my only unit left on the board and had nowhere to go. They’d have survived maybe another turn, but not two.
They certainly did not FUBAR their first order of the game in turn 1. how dare you even suggest such a thing.
I think to round out the aforementioned SS platoon, I’ll purchase the small teams (Flamethrower, Sniper, PZS) and perhaps either another small squad of SS or SS cavalry, and then paint up the FAO from the HQ set.
But I’ve got Grenadiers to paint in the meantime, and I can hear my unloved guardsmen calling.
*we drew, but that’s trivial, eh Toph?