Sunday, 1 January 2017
Off I went across the Peak District on my way to another Christmas Game at Richard C's over in the beautiful village of Storrs near Sheffield. This was the second time I have attended and if it was anything like the first one it would be a great day. Weather started off very foggy but by the time I hit The Roaches the sky cleared and I was greeted with the spectacular views over the Peaks.
This year it was to be a game of Chain of Command. Only having played this once before at Gauntlet earlier in the year I was really looking forward to learning more about the game as I thoroughly enjoyed my first experience with the rules. On arrival, and after a nice cup of tea, Richard C had organised a tutorial session to run us all the through the basics of the rules. Then after some lovely turkey soup (must get the recipe!) we gathered our forces to commence the game. Myself and Ron would be playing the Russians and Jamie and Andy would be playing the Germans. Our initial forces consisted of a Infantry Platoon each plus we were able to select some supports from the lists available. We selected an SU-76, a Squad of 'Black Death' Russian Naval Infantry, two MG's, a 60mm Mortar Team and a Jeep carrying an Anti-Tank Rifle Team.
Set in the later years of the war the Russians were tasked with securing a strategic crossroads that was being defended by Germans. Not sure what Andy had in the way of forces opposite Ron, but I was faced with an Elite German Fallschirmjager Platoon. The Germans were positioned on the left of the picture and the Russians entered from the right. The Patrol Phase didn't go too well as I didn't manage to get my JOP's as far up the table as I would have liked before they were locked down by the Germans. I had hoped to get one into the wood at the bottom of the picture but unfortunately the Germans had the same idea and I only got as far as the hedge.
The Game (as much as I can remember!)
The Germans started but unsurprisingly made no moves as they were defending although there were plenty of 5's rolled. This was as sign of things to come as the Germans rolled lots of 5's and lots of double and treble 6's! Although Andy was keen to get his Germans on the table he was advised it might be worth waiting to see what the Russians did before committing forces early. The Russian turn saw me deploy a Section by the hedge on the left flank (bottom of picture) and detach a 2 Man recon squad into the woods. Meanwhile in the centre another Section deployed along the hedge facing towards the left flank with a good field of fire.
Russian Infantry Section deploy on the left flank
More Russian Infantry deploy along the hedgerow in the centre
With a good field of fire across the southern half of the table
A Two Man Recce Team move forward into the woods on the left flank
The next turn saw the Germans not do much again except Jamie decided to deploy a Section of Fallschirmjager within close combat range of my Two Man Recce Team!
As expected the Russians stood no chance!
Broken! But they had forced a German unit to deploy to stop the loss of a JOP
Russians deploy a two man 60mm MortarTeam in support on the left flank
With it's first shot it rolled a 5 and two 6's, three hits from three dice a great start (or so you would think). Unfortunately the next roll to check for casualties resulted in no casualties or wounds. Better luck next time!
The Russian Infantry Section gets into a fire fight with the German Paratroops causing some casualties but the German MG fire begins to take it toll on the Russians.
The Russians in the centre also fire upon the Germans on the left flank inflicting further casualties eventually forcing the Germans back.
The Russians attempt to move into the woods in the hope of securing the German JOP located there
Unfortunately for the Russians the Paratroops have recovered from their earlier Shock and drove them back behind the hedge
Meanwhile in the centre the 'Black Death' Naval Infantry had deployed
Taking up a position at the corner of the crossroads
A Russian MG also moves up in support
In the woods opposite another section of Paratroops moved forward cautiously to the edge of the woods
After a firefight the Naval Infantry were finally forced back into the woods by the JOP
The Naval Infantry are forced back but the section on their left are still putting up a fight. Although with the amount of German MG fire it was going to be a tough task to take the crossroads!
The Fallschirmjager have also taken casualties
In fact the Germans deployed a Medical Orderly to assist this unit. It was too late though as the Junior Leader took a bullet to the head just before he arrived
German Medical Orderly on his bike arrives too late to save the Junior Leader
Russian A/T Rifle Team arrive in a Jeep but too late to have any part to play in the battle
Some more photos from the game from Ron and Andy's side of the table where Ron's Russians tried valiantly to take the woods near the crossroads but alas to no avail.
Finally the SU-76 enters the battle and opens up on the Germans
Ron's Russians attempt to cross the road to reach the woods but a terrible roll on the movement saw them stranded in the middle of the road!
Supported by another Section the Russians finally reach the edge of the woods
The Germans move up along the road and deploy a Panzerschreck Ambush at the crossroads
The Germans have the SU-76 in their sights
The Panzerschreck hits and the SU-76 is no more
The battle for the woods continues but the Russians aren't making any progress against the fire from the Germans
The SU-76 continues to burn as the Russians continue to try and capture the JOP in the woods in the distance
More Russians join the fight but unfortunately losses have reduced the Russians Morale to 0 and Ron's Russians are defeated.
The scene as the Russians are defeated
The Germans still hold the crossroads
All in all a great days gaming and I really am taken with the Chain of Command rules. Definitely a project for 2017 to build up some forces for Shed HQ. Many thanks to my fellow players Ron, Andy and Jamie for making it a great game and a big thank you to Richard C for putting on the game. Roll on next years game. Thanks for looking.