06 March 2019

The Germans of the Great War

- with Pat Gribble

The German forces of the Great War are represented by Battlefront with 4 different lists in the new Great War book. You can choose from the Infanteriekompanie, Stosskompanie, Siegfriedstellung or Jagerkompanie. Each of these has their own unique features, positives, and negatives, so there should be something in it for you, no matter your playing style.

I’ve managed to secure second-hand one of the German Army deals from the first release as well as a Stoss platoon. I’ve beefed this up with a couple of 7.7cm guns and the regimental support blister, from the sale before Christmas, which should keep me busy. Most of the army is based, but only some is painted, and my progress is best described as that of “an asthmatic ant with heavy shopping”. 

As I type, however, I keep flicking to the launch sale page on Battlefront’s website and trying to convince myself I don’t need any more, even if it is such a cheap price for more tanks.

In the first release, there were army deals for all the major nations, the Germans having Blitz’s Battlegroup, which let you make an infantry company. This time around, the Allied nations all have the same army deals from the first release. In comparison, there’s going to be a new army released for the Germans. Contained within the new Steiner’s Stosstruppen army deal, you get the following:

1x Stosskompanie HQ (with 2 teams)
2x Stoss Platoons (each with 8 teams)
2x Stoss Machine-Gun Platoon (each with 2 teams)
1x Stoss 7.6cm Minenwerfer
2x 7.62cm Infantry Guns
1x 7.7cm Artillery Battery (with 2 guns)
2 A7V tanks
1x Sniper

Looks very promising....

So, let's take a bit of a closer look at the formations you have access to and some sample 100 point lists you might consider.


The backbone of the Imperial Army, the infantry. Can assault, can defend. The all-purpose force. The infantry are trained (4+ skill) and confident (4+ motivation), but they do have the German special rule ‘Infanterie Vor!’, meaning their blitz move is better (3+). So what can you get? 

HQ, 3 Infantrie platoons, 3 MG platoons, a werfer section, a 7.6 Minenwerfer and 2 choices of minenwerfers or 3.7cm AT guns. Stripped right down to the cheapest option, the kompanie could be 77 points with all platoons used. But there’s so many options for the infanterie platoons!

Flamethrowers, AT rifles and rifle grenades mean a maxed out platoon would be 18 points, which is nearly a fifth of your force.

For me, a force would have:

HQ                                                                                           2 points
2 large Infanterie platoons with AT rifles                                    28 points
1 large Infanterie platoon with AT rifles and flamethrower           17 points
MG platoon with 3 guns                                                           14 points
Minenwerfer                                                                             9 points
1x A7V Panzer                                                                        19 points

1 x 7.7cm Field gun                                                                  9 points

This force should be enough to deal with anything that assaults it, and there’s 3 infantry platoons that can attack with tank support if that’s what is required, plus they have a flamethrower to pin if needed. Not sure about the AT rifles though; 5+ firepower with AT 4 is asking for a fortunate bad/good dice roll combo to hurt a tank. But they’re cheap and can move with the infantry. MG platoon for dealing to enemy infantry in the open, good for defence. Minenwerfer for coping with strong points, and a field gun to do the same or else take on enemy tanks at range.


This is the force if you’re the player in it for the assault. With a 2+ for blitz and in assault, and most of your weapons having a 4 inch range, you want to get in close fast. Not really a force for a long-range duel.

The Stosstruppen have the ‘Trench Fighters’, ‘Spearhead’ and ‘Night Attack’ special rules. The company itself has the option for HQ, 3 Stoss platoons, 3 Stoss 7.6 Minenwerfers, 2 Stoss MG platoons (max 2 guns per platoon) and 2 veteran 3.7 AT platoons. Even the cheapest version of all that is well over 100 points, even before you add options or support. Your options include an upgrade to the MP18 SMG for your HQ and 1 stand in each platoon, as well as flamethrowers.

If I were designing a Stoss force, my pick would be:

HQ                                                                                        2 points
2 full platoons with flamethrowers                                          46 points
MG platoon                                                                           12 points
Minenwerfer                                                                          12 points
Veteran 7.62cm infantry gun                                                    9 points

A7V                                                                                      19 points

Something to attack with, MGs for dealing to exposed infantry, support for taking out pesky strong points and I can’t pass up the chance for a tank. A small force, and those infantry platoons are expensive, especially with flamethrowers. But they can get close fast, have a lot of shots despite moving, and any hits with a flamethrower pin the target platoon. Also, the pistols and SMGs are AT 3 in assaults, giving you a good chance to knock out enemy tanks. These guys are just made for assaults, ensuring a fast, bloody (hopefully only for your opponent) game.


The Jager troops are a mix between the Infantrie and the Stosstruppen. If you want, you can even call them the Prussian 27th Jager Battalion and have Finns, since this unit was made up entirely of Finnish volunteers. These guys have the  2+ for blitz, and the infantry are equipped with rifles. Your troops are confident veteran, and there’s up to 13 stands in a platoon, plus extras. The Jagers have the ‘Infanterie Vor!’ and ‘Spearhead’ special rules.

Your formation can consists of HQ, 3 infantry platoons, 3 MG platoons, 2 platoons of either 7.6 Minenwerfers or 3.7cm AT guns and a Stoss platoon, which all together at the cheapest option wold be 120 points, not counting support. However, there are numerous options you can add. The HQ pistol units can upgrade to MP18 SMG, as can one stand in each infantry platoon. Also for your infantry, there’s a flamethrower and AT rifle available for each platoon, as well as an upgrade to rifle grenade for one stand in each platoon.

This force, it was a tough one to figure out. I’m tempted to have two small infantry platoons as well as a Stoss platoon at full strength for a big assault force and leave out tanks. However, I’m going to have to go with my standard two infantry platoons and support here.

HQ                                                                                              2 points
Jager platoon (13 stand) with flamethrower and AT rifle                 27 points
Jager platoon (13 stand) with flamethrower and AT rifle                 27 points
MG platoon with 2 Maxim MG08 HMG                                            12 points
3.7cm AT gun                                                                               8 points
A7V                                                                                            19 points

Sniper                                                                                          4 points

This is a list that would be interesting to run. The two infantry units are huge, accounting for over half the points, but should be very difficult to stop in assault. They won’t have the close-in rate of fire of the Stoss platoons, and won’t hit as easily in assaults, but if they’re all attacking then they need 8 hits in defensive fire to be stopped. A couple of MG's for defensive fire. There’s also a tank and AT gun to deal with enemy tanks, and a sniper to pin anything  potentially threatening or take out a major threat.


If your style suits standing your ground saying “Come at me!” then this
may be the force for you. There’s 1 platoon of infantry in this list, but 10 of assorted MG's, werfers and guns. The infantry platoon can also add a Granatenwerfer and AT rifle, and upgrade to an MP18 SMG and rifle grenade. This list represents the German defensive preparations to hold the Hindenburg Line from early 1917. The Siegfriedstellung list gets the ‘Defence in Depth’ and ‘Concrete Bunkers’ special rules.

The troops are Reluctant Veterans, although the infantry can blitz on 2+, and
due to the Concrete Bunkers rule, everyone rallies on 4+. With all platoons included, the cheapest version of the company is just over 100 points.

So, what's my list look like?

HQ                                                                                                2 points
Infanterie platoon (13 stand) + AT rifle                                           18 points
7.7cm Field Gun                                                                            10 points
7.7cm Field Gun                                                                            10 points
MG platoon with  4x MG08                                                             23 points
7.6cm Minenwerfer                                                                       11 points
7.6cm Minenwerfer                                                                       11 points
7.62cm Infantry Gun                                                                      8 points

3.7cm AT Gun                                                                                7 points

The MG platoon may take nearly a quarter of the points, but I can always swap for nests/a pillbox in some missions, so there is that benefit. The list’s got a lot of guns, but they should be able to do the job. And all contained within the formation diagram as well, so no need for any support platoons. 

Speaking of which…what ARE the support options you can get?

The A7V, of course!! You can get 6 of them! But at 19 points each, that’s not likely unless you’re playing 150+ points. Or you can have support from captured Mark IV Female and Male tanks. 

Additionally, there’s the 7.62cm infantry gun trained or veteran, the 7.7cm field gun again trained or veteran and artillery batteries trained or veteran. However, a 4-gun veteran battery runs at 46 points, so nearly half your force, meaning I don’t think you will see that very often. Of course, there is also a sniper for 4 points. 

Additionally, missions that have the ‘Machine-gun Bunkers’ rule allow you to swap MG teams for nests and pillboxes: 1 MG team for a nest, or 3 MG teams for a pillbox.

The Germans look like they’ll be fun to play, and with 4 different lists I can try the different formations with a bit of proxying. My challenge now is to get my army to a table-top ready condition, something I’ll be working on over the next short while.

I'll keep you posted...

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