Somewhat (very) hungover, on the last full day of Mark’s stay (six weeks ago now!) I thought it would be a good idea to show him a Lardies game. I chose Chain of Command, and the Exploiting the Gap scenario from the Scottish Corridor pint sized campaign, mainly because it would be quick to set up. A panzergrenadier platoon from Kampfgruppe Weidinger, 2nd SS Panzer Division attacks a scratch force from the 15 (Scottish) Division in the small village of Mondrainville.
Mark commanded the SS Panzergrenadiers, who were supported by a Panther, an MG.42, and a ranking senior leader. I elected for an extra PIAT team and an extra infantry section. I walked Mark through the patrol phase, which, for new players, is the first indication that Chain of Command is something new.
Mark rolled well for force morale, so he went first. And go he did, with a run of double sixes in the first phases which meant he could get a really good head start. Suffice it to say that the free jump off point that the scenario gave me never got used, as by the time it was my phase there was a Panther sitting on it.
When the British eventually got going, their first roll included two 1’s, so I was able to get a PIAT team and a 2″ mortar deployed. The PIAT scored a hit with its first shot, but it was never going to penetrate the front of a Panther, so I smoked it with the mortar. British infantry also began deploying infantry into the centre field.
The first panzergrenadier squad started heading off to support the Panther, but of course they took ages to get across the wall, and resorted to moving through the large farmhouse, which they also took ages to move through. Variable movement rates can be very fickle sometimes. Soon the British were winning a firefight with the German MG.42, while the remaining two panzergrenadier squads made their way through the orchard.
Despite fairly good odds the three British squads, once the German infantry joined the fight the British began to succumb.
Meanwhile the German squad on the other flank finally made it around to support the Panther, and together they began closing in.
In a make or break move, the British deployed a section and their second PIAT team in a short range ambush. The PIAT hit the side armour of the Panther, but failed to penetrate, and the British section’s fire was ineffective.
The British in the field began to follow a cycle where a team would break and rout into a perfect position for the Panther to finish it off.
We left the game with the British force morale down to two or three. Mark had a really good run of command dice at the start of the game, which put me in the position of having to choose between being gunned down by a Panther or multiple MG.42s. I chose to try to neutralise the German infantry, but they had far more firepower than the Panther so obviously the gamble didn’t pay off. We really enjoyed the game