Sunday, January 15, 2012

Battleground Weird WWII: M1/M2 Combat Car/M1A2 Light Tank

M1/M1A1E1 Combat Car

M1A1/M2 Combat Car/M1A2 Light Tank

Notes:  This was really a pre-war vehicle and was replaced by the M3 before the war started but it could easily be found within State Guard and training units through out the US of A.  Note that the M1 and M1A1E1 are the same model but with different engines and the M1A1 and M2 are the same with different engines.  The M1A2 Light Tank was a new name for the whole series after the term "Combat Car" was dropped.  Got it?  Tough!  You'll need the core Battleground WWII rulebook to really use all the info, so get it already!
Date Introduced:  Mid 1937
Users:  United States
Vehicle Chart:  We use the M3 vehicle chart for all the models of the M1 and just modify where needed.  You can find a M3 chart in the Tanker's Challenge supplement.
Crew:  4 (commander, gunner, driver & asst. driver/radio op.)
MG As Main Weapon:  Because the vehicle's main weapon is a machine gun, the vehicle will not suffer the No Commander penalty.
High Ground Pressure:  All M1 models will suffer a +1 to all Bog Checks due to its high ground pressure.
Pistol Ports:  M1 models had various turrets over its production and some were fitted with pistol ports.  These ports allowed for the crew to fire their side arms from within the vehicle usually at assaulting enemy infantry.  The commander and loader may fire their pistol or sub machine gun out of a pistol port by using an action in doing so.  All pistol ports have a 90-degree fire arc and will always suffer a 1/2 To Hit penalty.  Note that prone infantry 1" away from the vehicle cannot be hit by fire from these ports and infantry within 2" will receive partial tank cover from fire from the pistol port.  As for what model is fitted with pistol ports, just use the WYSIWYG rules to determine which.
AAMG:  M1 models were often fitted with an AAMG mounted to the rear of the turret.  The gunner mans it by standing on the engine deck.  The only cover the gunner is offered would be Partial Tank Cover from fire coming from the front but no other cover is given to flank and rear incoming fire.  Use all other rules as normal for AAMG fire and Vehicle Shadows sighted from the weapons location.
Diesel Engine:  The M1A1E1 M2 were essentially a M1 and M1A1 respectively but were fitted with a new diesel engine instead of a gasoline one.  M1A1E1 and M2s will benefit with a +1 to any effects on the Penetration Effects chart.  Availability is a 3 for this M1 model type.
Turret Hatch:  All M1 models have a hinged turret hatch that folded up and acted like a large shield for any exposed crew.  The hatch will provide the exposed crew a +7 to any fire coming in from the front of the shield but will only offer a +3 to fire coming from the flanks or rear.
Rivet Construction:  All M1 models were of riveted construction and will suffer as such when hit at the appropriate locations.  Any non-penetrating hits to a location with rivets will force any crew that might be at that location to take an immediate D column hit.  Apply any effects as normal with the exception of any MC or Suppression results will be considered -1 action for the the effected crewman for the remainder of the battle.  Apply what locations are covered by this rule via the WYSIWYG rules.
Police Use:  It is possible that the M1 might have found itself in use with local law enforcement.  If gaming with a large urban police department then the Availability of a M1 in its inventory will be a 8 for a single vehicle.
State Guard Use:  The possibility of the outdated M1 to find its way into a State Guard unit is quite high thus the Availability of D4 vehicles is a 10.
Flame Tank:  Some commanders upgraded their M1s with a simple man-portable flamethrower that replaced the light machine gun in the M1's turret.  This easy conversion allowed any M1 to become a deadly armored flamethrower.  The flamethrower is operated by the gunner and takes an action to fire the flamethrower within the normal fire arc of the turret mounted light machine gun.  The flamethrower has enough fuel for 8 shots and will use the Man-Portable flamethrower template.  The tip of the template will be placed 2" directly in front of the flamethrower's position.  Any prone figures between the template and tank will make an immediate Morale Check and any standing will suffer an automatic Gory Death.  All normal flamethrower rules apply.  In addition, any penetrating hit to the TF 17 location or right TS 17 or 18 location, will result in an automatic Catastrophic result on the Penetration Effects chart.  Availability is a 5 to any State Guard units and a 1 for any police departments.
Wargaming Piece:  I am not aware of anyone who makes a 1/48 or 1/50 scale model or toy of any Combat Cars so if you do let me know and I'll post it here so others can get some. 
           Wt   Sz   HF   TF   HS   TS   HR   TR   HT   TT   Sd   Ld   TR   Ty   Smk   HMG   CMG   AAMG   Gun   AP   APCR   HEAT   HE   HE Size
*1        9.4    S     5     3      3      3     3     3      2     1    10   -----   S     T    -----    LMG    LMG  LCMG-15  ---   -----    -----      -----    -----       -----
*2        9.5    S     5     3      3      3     3     3      2     1    10   -----   S     T    -----    LMG    LMG  LCMG-15  ---   -----    -----      -----    -----       -----
*1-M1/M1A1E1*2-M1A1/M2  or just a M1A2 Light Tank

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