Sunday, 26 May 2013

Another CoC playtest game Italians vs British

On Wednesday 22nd May Gus and Jason visited me for another game of the new    Lardy's 15mm Chain of Command, with the Italians, commanded by Gus, taking on my British, Jason was guardian of the rules, taking photos and heaping abuse upon us both. This time we were trying out less commanders on the Italian side, plus neither side knew what the other had taken as support.

Jump off points in place
Gus had an Italian platoon (1 senior leader and 2 squads each with 1 junior leader and 19 men and 2 Breda lmg's), supported by an additional senior leader, a 75mm infantry gun and a forward observer with 8cm mortars on call.  I had a British platoon (2 senior leaders and 3 squads of 1 junior leader and 9 men with 1 Bren lmg).  My support option was an M10 Achilles, I know why??? I was struck that he was using the German force list as the Italian list is yet to be completed, and I was tank frightened. Of the two forces, Gus' had the best support options as my M10 had no HE capability at all and, as Gus had no armour, its mighty 17pdr was wasted.   Also during the game I cunningly forgot to bring on my 2" mortar and PIAT team with the HQ.

Italians on the flank
Italians pushed back

The map was set up and off we went. Gus pushed around on his left flank, but was then driven back by the combined fire of 2 British squads. The other British squad was exchanging fire the the remaining Italians in the village, but 10 men with 1 LMG will always lose out to 20 men with 2 LMGs.

The 75mm infantry gun started banging away at the Achilles at long range. As the HE shells exploded on the glacis plate, the crew of the Achilles were forced to keep their heads down. Their return fire with the pintle 50cal was ineffectual and the driver decided to move them behind the hill and out of sight.

British advance into the mortars barrage
"Happy" Gus, who finally won a game

Things got a bit rocky for Gus on the left when his sergeant went down, but the mortars saved the day for him. The CO called them in and when they started coming down they decimating the British squads on that flank. As his troops fell, My force's morale did the same and, before you could say "put the kettle on" I was falling back and quit the field of battle.

So, another victory for the Italians and Gus has finally won a game of CoC at last, how many games is that now???

I will just give some observations to the game myself from my angle and my random musings of the game itself.

We played the game with support, we choose to roll independantly and take off or add on our force attribute ratings, this way neither side knows the others scores, and then we choose our support options, this way you dont choose the support to fight the known enemy, you know they have an infantry platoon but you dont know what else they have or potentially could have, this adds to the game we feel, I still feel the Italians are are too shall I say it under priced, they have a lot of men and lmg's for their value, and they seem to be very flexible... You cannot beat them on a one on one fire fight... Unless you take extra units to counter balance this... yes my option was an M10 in my game I know stupid choice!!!

The other observation is regarding mortar/artillery support, this basically destroyed my game plan, tough, I know, and shit happens, this was done with one round of mortar stonks being called in, and then to add insult to injury there were another two turns of stonks to come in which Gus duly delivered, observation do you need three potentiall rounds of this coming in? as in most occassions the damage would be done in the first round, and they are all pinned in the 12"/18" area as well, and if you are using sections in unison with tank support as i was this hits 3/4 of your force anyways. Maybe this is too strong on a game at this level?

All in all I really like this set of rules so far testing them, the troop options you have and the support choices adds flavour, maybe they could have a chance option within the support element, as you are choosing the support from your support cupboard/toolbox, a thought would be the higher you go up the support ladder the less chance of you getting it, after all you are only a platoon commander??

I feel the random special events are a bit "random"and "dissapointing" at the moment, its hard enough for me to get one or two 6's in a row, let alone 4, although I did get several goes on the trot, rare but this helped me greatly during the game, and then the special event could screw me on the random role, life is like a box of chocolates I hear you say, or tough titties as Jason and Gus would tell me... I just think this could be so much more... feedback to Rich has been supplied...

I think the next play test will be using Japs and US Marines... or Russian Front.... mmm what next???

Pics courtesey of Jason...

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