I got my first game of the http://samcongdon.com/travels/comment-page-1/ TooFatLardie’s supplement to their http://jessicaconoley.com/?p=997 Chain of Command rules for the Spanish Civil War, source CoC Espana last night. The very short version is that it was a GREAT game and very different from the WW2 version in playing, but with only minor changes to the rules making it very easy to pick up. I was very kindly hosted by the gentlemen of the South East Scotland Wargames Club for the game and am most grateful to them. Unfortunately, I didn’t take any photos.
Anyway, on to the action! We were 2 players and 2 platoons per side and the game effectively divided itself into 2 separate engagements. I had a platoon of regular Requetes against my opponent’s anarchist militia. Due to force ratings, he upgraded to Fanatics, bought an armoured truck and an adjutant to help with deployment. The ground in our section was dominated by a hill to my left with a small wood on my opponent’s side, descending to open ground in the centre and right with hedged fields on both sides and a house on my side.
The Patrol Phase left us both with Jump Off Points towards the rear except where the wood provided cover, with that housing one Anarchist JOP, I also had one on the short table edge in the dead ground behind the hill.
Anyway, Jim brought on 2 10 man sections – one into the wood and one into a field on his left flank, I countered with teams basically opposite. Jim then brought on the remaining 2 sections centre rear and I saw my chance!! The militia section in the woods was, I felt, exposed and there was a Jump Off Point just behind! I seized the moment, brought on the rest of the section and the platoon sergeant and made a mad dash for them, taking the shock for moving 3D6. They were on overwatch and I lost a man on the way in, but the Requetes crashed into the close combat – they lost 4 men but killed 8 and the remaining 2 fled. Phase 1 complete!
I then begin to bring the second section on in the middle with the platoon commander – this was to threaten from 2 directions and force the militia to share their scarce command dice, I would hit wherever was weakest! The left flank moved forward, occupied the JOP and moved to line the edge of the wood. And then it all went horribly wrong!!!!!!
My opponent was only throwing 4 command dice and needed 2 6s to get a follow on phase – he now did this THREE TIMES IN A ROW!!!! Now the counter argument is that that only leaves 2 dice to activate troops, too true, but each time he was able to come up with a 4, activate his very well placed senior leader, activate all 3 sections and pour fire into the Requetes in the wood. Men were falling like nine pins and they were soon pinned, both leaders out of action for the turn and force morale dropping. Even when I activated, he played a CoC dice to interrupt and pour in more fire – one team went down completely, although that took away its shock and then my colleague used his CoC dice to end the turn. Phew. The JOP was lost, the section unpinned (due to the loss of shock with the lost team) and I was moving up in the centre. The next Anarchist phase, however, saw the last few Requetes on the left break and run – force morale down again! And the centre was just too far away to get to grips with the exposed, left flank militia section. My opponent was able to bring a second section up to join them and I decided to call it a day.
What of the armoured truck? It came on early on the only road on the far side of the table, moving 2D6. My opponent’s colleague kindly pointed out that he could move a 3rd dice, which was duly thrown, resulting in a breakdown!!
So, a great game and I really felt the rules and adjustments worked superbly well. The 3 anarchist phases in a row really did for me, but that is war. It was just a case of a moment of inspired leadership by the anarchist leader, getting his men out of a difficult situation with rapid and well directed fire whilst the Requetes struggled to get their act together after the close combat – c’est la guerre!
Monty the Desert Rat