Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Combat Commander once more

Played another couple of scenarios of Combat Commander at my Dads last night (he is hooked and cant get enough of the game and in truth neither can I).

First up was a Stalingrad scenario (think it was called Blood and Iron ?) set in a built up area with Russian Guards on defence and Fritzs attacking.
Rather odd set up gives the Ivans all the victory locations but then allows Fritzs to set up into one of the key objectives (VP location 5) claiming it as their own.
This proved even more key as an early event gave this same VP location an extra 10 victory points value (making it worth a whopping 26 !!). Hindsight being a wonderous thing I know I set up much too dispersed making several squads easy pickings for a Fritz juggernaut of a +2 Leader (ie damn good) with a Rifle Squad and a Crew with an HMG.
This group went into the large building on my left and chewed me up.
I did manage to make a fight of it throwing several units in to deny total possession to enemy but again hindsight would advise that this was waste of resources as it was a minor victory location (in fact no actually worth any points !).
The key VP location 5 building was solidly held by Fritzs and I could make no headway gaining only one hex with hero and a squad.
When German reserves appeared on turn 4 they immediately bolstered the already strong defence and game was up for my lot.
I did get my own reserves into fray but had no effect as next turn was a Sudden Death 'opportunity' which of course  ocurred giving Hitlerites the victory.
Both sides had satchel charges in this one and fairly nasty they are too with a 12 effect.
I used one in a Nazi held building hex which rubbled it and thereby suppressed defenders who then duly broke but sodding well recovered.

Second scenario was an entertaining affair as well but of a totally different ilk.
Was titled (I think) 'Road To Grombleux' (or Grimbleux as I soon termed it) I decided (being a glutton for punishment) to try out French forces in the game system.
Scenario (from Mediterranean pack) saw my Elite Moroccan defenders holding a sunken road in France 1940 against Regular Hun invaders.
French units are perfectly fine matching up well one on one against Germans...................BUT.................the French hand is awful as they only get to discard a single card if they do nothing else (compared to Germans who can discard 6 !).
This means in a 4 card defensive hand if you get 4 unusable Order cards it could take 4 turns to rid yourself of them !!
First couple of turns this is exactly what happened as I had a 'hand like a foot' ie 3 Command Confusion and an Unusable Artillery request card and my draws where also poor (ie no bloody Fire cards).
This allowed Germans to advance unhindered and melee a couple of my Squads to death.
After a few turns I was suddenly down to 1 Leader i Squad and a Crew with HMG in a Victory Hex).
But of course this being Combat Commander all was not lost as I managed being defender to 'place' a Pillbox in this hex which put a real crimp in Hun ambitions.
He needed to take this hex and/or kill my remaining units before time ran out.
My chaps were stoic in defence repelling several attacks and recovering from several broken status.
However inevitably the Germans simply discarded massively to get hand they needed before charging in using several Ambush cards (to which I had no reply) and wiping me out.
Great stuff in the end and a close run thing (which certainly was not apparent at beginning) but boy oh boy the French are a tough bunch to handle.
The single discard is a real killer.
Reading the historical outcome of the scenario we seemed to repeat history as the Morcoccans apparently held to last man.

So after last sessions 2 to nil for the Allies this time around Axis acheive the 2 victories and tie the 'series'.
Cant really ask for more balanced play than this.


  1. I've never played any games like these but whenever I read your reports they always sound like a lot of fun.

    1. I am of course now thinking about buying a hexed cloth to try it out with minis ! :-)

  2. Gotta agree with Phil's comment, it does look a great game and I'm sorely tempted to get a game like this (and Maurice too!!)

  3. This particular system is nice because the rules (IMHO) are very clear and well written, there aren't a lot of exceptions (most covered by cards), and there tons of scenarios available. Good support on boardgamegeek.com as well.

    I've enjoyed all these reports.

  4. With lack of vehicles I was reticent to buy this game at all but boy was I wrong as I really don't miss any of the mechanical contraptions.
    Beware though if you like total control of your units in your games this one may (indeed will) frustrate you greatly. Me I am all for it chaos/narrative building system which works without being silly IMHO