Tuesday, 17 February 2015

Chain of Command - Capture the Bridge

Last night saw another game of Chain of Command.  In previous games I've been a bit frustrated sometimes as the opposing side have tended to seize buildings and tree lines and dig in, taking advantage of the heavy cover.  This can lead to games becoming a bit stagnant with little fire and movement.  It strikes me that this is probably realistic.. who really want to advance in the open in the face of heavy rifle and LMG fire...but doesn't always make for the most exciting game.

For this week's game I opted for a Seize the Objective scenario in the hope that this might spur at least one side into action.  The scenario pitted a Soviet force counter-attacking against a German platoon who had established a bridgehead across a rive somewhere in Western Russia.

During the patrol phase  the Soviets pushed forward using a farmhouse and wheat fields as cover.  The Germans left one patrol marker on the bridge itself and pushed there others forward towards some woods on the Soviet right and some ruined buildings.  The deployed jump off points ended up looking like this...

The opposing lines
German defences on the river

Chris, taking the German side, decided that attack was the best form of defence and pushed 2 infantry sections and a Pz38 in from his left flank, attempting to take out some of the Soviet jump off points or at least put them under pressure.  Over on the other side of the table 2 sections were holed up in opposing buildings, trading shots.  Despite the protection of the heavy cover we both took casualties but the German NCO was wounded, knocking him out for a turn (a long time in CoC) and causing a morale loss to the Germans.

Over the next couple of turns he was hit at least once or twice more, causing a morale loss each time. I wasn't sure whether his injuries would repeatedly cause a morale loss but having checked with the experts on the Yahoo group it seems we go it right and it does mount up.  Frankly the German section would have been better off shooting him straight away and getting it over with!

The Pz38 and infantry begin their attack on the left.

The pressure on the Soviet right flank was beginning to mount as I'd repeatedly failed to deploy anything and Chris now had 2 infantry sections and a tank moving rapidly towards my Jump Off markers.
More German infantry in the woods

Chris then decided to push one of his sections out of cover towards the farmhouse and my dice finally came good!  A Soviet section appeared in the wheatfield and opened up on the exposed Germans causing heavy casualties over the next 2 phases.

The exposed Germans come under short range fire

Not surprisingly the Germans eventually broke under the sustained fire, despite Chris managing to get his tank into action (without much success).  The unit was wiped out apart from the NCO and accompanying Senior Leader who fled backwards away from trouble.  The wounded German NCO was hit yet again, leaving the Germans with very few morale points and my Chain of Command dice had now reached the magic level of 6...this allows players to do a number of special actions and crucially allowed me to end the turn (we actually only played 1 turn).  This routed the German Senior and Junior Leaders off the table, finishing off the morale collapse and winning the game.

It felt like a slightly cheesy way to win but the clock was getting on and it would have been time to stop anyway.  It's the first time I've noticed the heavy impact of wounded leaders in CoC...I guess the answer is to keep them out of trouble where you can and avoid sticking them up in the front line where they can get short heroically...over and over and over again!!

I have another CoC game lined up next week and I'm tempted to re-fight this scenario again since it seemed to work (obviously since I won!!), possibly with a Spanish Civil War twist.

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