Saturday, January 28, 2023

Combat HQ game at Ulster Wargames Society meeting

Club day and I participated in a game using Combat HQ with Mike and Simon.

CHQ is a set I briefly dabbled with but never really got into but do have the 2nd edition Pdf.

Mike set up a 6mm game based upon Operation Goodwood in Normandy July 1944 (adapted from a Field of Battle scenario) using his terrain and toys and he umpired being most knowledgeable with system (I really must dust off my 6mm and get them to table)

We simply diced for side and I landed with German defenders against Simon with British attackers.

We did not use the Blinds/Hidden units rules (as need to refresh understanding of these) but this did not seem to effect game especially as Simon massed all his stuff on his right and I then moved all my stuff from my right to my left to thwart his advance. This did allow me to advance a lone PzGr Company on my right into a village (Fueonville ?) unopposed recapturing from initial British control (victory was dependent on control of the villages).

Game saw a sort of massed tank brawl much to Mikes shock as I think he was expecting a broader advance with a more nuanced defence, that will teach him !

System uses Command Dice each turn to generate initiative and orders backed up by Staff Orders (that can be replenished if used).

I had 9 Dice each turn and Simon had 10, you roll and group them into 'chains (ie like numbers) that can be used singly or in said chains allowing 1-3 actions per Command Group (up to 4 units ie roughly a Company of 1-4 Platoon stands). Each command group is activated by use of the dice but only once per turn however use of said Chains can allow multiple actions for each activated formation.

However ones are bad (or my case extremely bloody naughty) and sixes are good, as they count as Wild Dice (can be used as any other dice or to enhance shooting and several other options) but if you roll more ones than sixes you 'fail' command possibly giving your ones to enemy who counts them as Wild dice. I do not recall obtaining any such gifts from Simon (stinghy) but 'gifted' him at least 12 such generous offerings over course of game.

Staff Orders (I had pool of 6 Simon had 8 or 9 ?) can be used similarly to Wild dice but also to call in Artillery or sustain/adjust barrages.

Movement and shooting is slick and quick being a form of 'buckets of D6' system (not my favourite method) but this suits the fast play grand tactical scale of system.

As example a Panther unit fires with basic 10 anti-tank dice needing basic 4+  to hit a Sherman rolls a basic 7 dice in defence needing basic 4+ to 'save'. Any attacking rolls of six that defender fails to match results in target becoming Suppressed (no shooting). Each excess hit causes a Disruption with units KO'd upon 3rd such disruption (a D3 is then rolled which reduces Force Morale).

The number of dice rolled and to hit numbers required can be adjusted by usual stuff like range, cover, morale state and use of Wild dice or Staff orders (these are quite flexible/important in system).

Movement is usually a fixed amount (3-6") with variable dice additions but use of dice Chains can allow a formation/unit to move large distances (number of shooting dice is possibly effected).

There is of course much more to system than this brief outline and we did get a couple of things wrong but game flowed really well and it was very enjoyable overall.

Game essentially ended up a draw as we called time but I was certainly shy of Panzers by this stage having used them to stymie Brit armour, however Simon unwillingly to advance into range of my 3 batteries of 88mm guns with his few remaining tank units.

System sort of felt like a mix of FOB WW2 game, Blitzkrieg Commander and maybe Chain of Command and is very much a quick play low complexity style set.

I only managed a couple of ropey pics (always a good sign)

Action hot and heavy around village of Bras (red dice is center of ongoing British barrage which destroyed a PzGr company)

Panther company (visible on center right with 1 unit already KO'd) attracted a 'poo' load of attention including some nasty M10 Achilles. They were eventually wiped out but gave good account of themselves and tied up tons of British units. The cards are very nice unit stat cards Mike made up.

A Company of PzIVH advance in foreground with a Stug Company also advancing in distance as Brits push forward

Also at club were three other games which I had only a very brief lunchtime visit to and no idea how they turned out.

Jeremy M had an Arab-Israeli air war game (interesting subject) no idea what rules used.

The the two Davids had a FOGR game going (apparently lots of dead generals) 

Andy had an impressive 28mm GDA game, French vs British


  1. Nice ruleset. Will it work for a group game?

    1. At first blush a big no as command dice are a finite resource that are often used in batches so hard to be fair and equitable with distribution in multi-player game, so some players might get little to do bar opp fire which I dont think is ideal. There may be multi-player options ?

  2. Cool stuff, and I actually bought those rules a few months ago, they look pretty interesting.


    1. They are indeed interesting. I have had them since first edition but just never devoted time to trying them. Some stuff seems odd at first as something like a platoon of light tanks can potentially take out heaviest tanks (unlikely but can happen) but once you understand that the results of Firing Dice vs Reaction Dice (ie defence rolls) are not just a measure of armour defence/penetration but also include damage/immobilization and Morale its sits a bit better, at least for me.