So, last Friday saw another playtest of the developing Cold War rules for TooFatLardies’ Chain of Command rules. We increased the scope of the game this time and pitted a full Soviet BMP Motor Rifle Platoon with 2 T64Bs in support (yes, I had to proxy T55s on the night!) and a further BMP without dismounts. They also had a smoke barrage and an HE barrage to start things off.
On the other side, the British had a full, elite infantry platoon and a Chieftain off table, along with 2 minefields.
The table looked like this with the British edge to the right and the Soviet edge to the left. The woods and building on the far side are the Soviet objective:
And the Soviet task was to get at least 3 armoured vehicles (with passengers) off the table AND clear the left hand woods as they looked at it. The British task was to stop them.
Once again, we didn’t play the Patrol Phase as I know this works and I wanted to focus on the action. I therefore positioned the JOPs for the players.
The Soviets diced well for Force Morale, the British less so and the Soviets had the first move. They had deployed the smoke to cover their advance:
and used the speed of their BMPs to close 2 of them on the objective and then debus under cover of the smoke. The British were struggling to deploy – failing to come on in time to protect the JOP in the wood, which duly fell.
Finally on the table, the British had a section in the woods on their left and 2 sections in the open ground in the centre. The latter 2 engaged the 2 soviet dismounted teams in a firefight. This was a real dilemma for the Soviets, they really weren’t strong enough to close assault but, even with some of the British masking the others, fire power was not in their favour. They really needed some support from their armoured vehicles but their BMPs were very close and would be vulnerable both to the section AT weapons and the off table Chieftain had they emerged from the smoke. They had only managed to get one tank on the table and that was stuck a long way back and with no field of fire.
The third BMP came on and raced along the table edge to exit – one armoured vehicle off and 2 to go. The Soviets were taking a pounding in the centre with the Chieftain also using HESH to pile on the misery. Something had to be done and they took the risk and their 2 forward BMPs emerged to engage the British infantry. One succumbed to the section’s Carl Gustav but the HE of a 2 phase run really hurt the British. By this time the Soviets were down a section – the dismounts wiped out, the Plt Sgt lying wounded and the BMP smoking by their side. But the British had also lost a section’s worth of men.
The Soviets pulled their remaining team back and brought the BMP round to board and race off board – 2 off, 1 to go. The Soviet on table tank was also now racing for the base line. It survived a couple of hits from the Carl Gustav in the wood to the Soviet right (this allowed me to test the mechanisms for infantry AT against more modern tanks than we had used before). It duly used the cover of the woods to also exit the table.
The British in the woods on their left/the Soviet right with the Carl Gustav gunner on the right by the front pines – good shooting, but his 84mm just wasn’t enough for the job at hand.
So, another good game and all the basics are working well. The one thing it really threw up was the difficulty for the Soviets in handling a force of this size, so we are no reviewing how we do this to try to get a more realistic outcome. But, as I say, the key rule basics stood the test of yet another game and I do feel we are making some very good progress.
Monty the Desert Rat.