Combat Commander: Solo

Adventures in solitaire playing of Chad Jensen's World War II Tactical Game System: Combat Commander: Europe, Mediterranean, Pacific and Resistance.

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#10: Stand and Die - Battle #4 (Scenario #45 - Map #32)

Joe C Faust
United States
Hartville
Ohio
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From 2/19/11

Having pushed the Germans back to the ravine, the Russians are tasked with pushing the dug-in Germans further out of Stalingrad. But the Germans have plans to advance as well. By now the bridge has been rebuilt, and there was fierce melee combat for possession, with the Russians holding. However, the Russians were in poor position for an assault, and Captain Vogel took his elite troops on the attack across the north while the south flank held its own against superior Russian numbers. The Russians couldn't mobilize against Vogel's onslaught, and in a series of Melees he punished the Russians until the first Sudden Death roll ended the game. The Germans will now finding themselves tasked with taking the rail yard... again.
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Won/Loss
Anzac: 1/0
Germany: 3/5
Japan 0/2
Russia: 2/3
United States: 3/0
U.S. Marines: 1/0
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Tue Mar 15, 2011 4:21 pm
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#9: Stand and Die - Battle #3 (Scenario 45 - Map #36)

Joe C Faust
United States
Hartville
Ohio
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From 2/3/11

The Germans are now dug in across the railyards and the Russians tasked with retaking it. Everything seemed to be going for the Germans - superior troops; well positioned; great kill numbers against the green half of the Russians, who were slow to move in the first half of the game; and lots of time checks, almost one every turn for a while. But the Russians slowly consolidated and threw their best troops at the German right, using smoke to cover their movement. Once they got close enough, the battle was decided in their favor through a series of Melees. Back to the ravine...
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Won/Loss
Anzac: 1/0
Germany: 2/5
Japan 0/2
Russia: 2/2
United States: 3/0
U.S. Marines: 1/0
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Tue Mar 15, 2011 4:18 pm
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#8: Ambush at Mogaung (Scenario B, Map B)

Joe C Faust
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Hartville
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From 1/29/11

Japan in disarray as randomly set-up Brits cut the head and tail off of their patrol line. Survivors fell back to the center village and then began to fight back, slowly whittling away at their attackers. The battle could have gone either way, but when the clock ran out the Brits were victorious.

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Won/Loss
Anzac: 1/0
Germany: 2/4
Japan 0/2
Russia: 1/2
United States: 3/0
U.S. Marines: 1/0
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Sat Mar 12, 2011 1:35 pm
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#7: Grassy Knoll (Scenario A - Map A)

Joe C Faust
United States
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From 1/2/11

Having gotten a copy of Combat Commander: Pacific for Christmas, I decided to take a break from the Stalingrad campaign to try it out. Besides, I’d just trimmed the counters and hadn’t done Europe yet, so it gave me an excuse to tear down Stalingrad for a while.

The U.S. set up more or less together, with Sgt. Savage and Lt. DeMoss each commanding a large group of troops that could be wielded as a powerful firegroup against the advancing Japanese. The Japanese went into three groups. A small fire group to deter movement to the cover in the north; a larger firegroup with Lt. Danchi to counter the large group headed by the American Lieutenant; and a squad with a weapon crew served IG gun hidden via sighing marker, set up in a prime defensive location to hammer on anything that set foot in the hemp field.



Danchi opened the festivities by calling in artillery, which was suppressed and then removed by American counterfire. Then the Americans called in and got the big guns, which cost them on points but helped Savage’s crew destroy the retreating north contingent of Japanese troops.

Armed with a handful of Ambush cards, Danchi tried to close in on DeMoss’ group, but was met with spirited fire that included Marksmanship, Enfilade, and Concentrated Fire (or, as we here at CC:S affectionately call it, “Breaking my machine guns”). But the machine guns didn’t break and a great many Japanese fell. Meantime, the bunkered Japanese revealed themselves and began to rain fire down on Savage’s position, keeping him effectively pinned down. With DeMoss’ group having trouble moving through the jungles with a .50 in tow, it was up to the appearing Filipino guerillas to carry the day.



The guerillas moved characteristically fast, and by the time they Advanced next to the bunker (to avoid an IG gun attack at point blank range), they had a handful of Hand Grenades to lend to the attack. With a roll of 11 the bunker was destroyed and the Japanese broken. But they revived and the B Division unit moved into Melee and destroyed the guerillas. This same unit would engage and destroy the other two units of Filipinos as they moved toward the IG gun, reclaiming the pricey Objective 5 as they did.



As DeMoss’ group made their way through the jungle toward the IG gun, Savage kept reviving and calling in artillery strikes on the position, which did little to shake the defenders. The emboldened B Division moved in on DeMoss’ position, but was cut to pieces by a massive fire attack of 27 used all but two in-hand cards and killed them instantly.

At this point, the clock was running down. The first Sudden Death came, resulted in a struggle with the Initiative card, but the Marines prevailed and the battle continued. DeMoss ordered the Weapon squad to stay behind with the .50 and moved up with a single squad to the IG gun, Bayonets fixed. But before they could go into Melee, the Weapon crew Advanced first.

The Japanese held two Ambush cards, which killed DeMoss. The Marines wielded their Bayonets, and after more wrangling with the Initiative card, the Melee ended in a tie – and both remaining units being eliminated.



And so the game ended with a Marine victory. But between the eliminated squads, the price paid for artillery on each side, and the see-saw 20 point swings from possession of Objective 5, the Victory Points track bizarrely stood at… zero.

NEXT: Decision time. Do I go back to the Stalingrad campaign, or flip the map and play another Pacific scenario since I have the map out? I think I know the answer…

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Won/Loss
Germany: 2/4
Japan 0/1
Russia: 1/2
United States: 3/0
U.S. Marines: 1/0
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Sat Mar 12, 2011 1:29 pm
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#6: Stand and Die - Battle #2 (Scenario #45 - Map # 32)

Joe C Faust
United States
Hartville
Ohio
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From 12/26/10

The second battle of Stalingrad commenced with an interesting set-up: two lines of opposing troops across the width of a canyon (Map #32). Not each group on an opposite side – each was deployed down the hills into the bottom and back up the other side. Another interesting item about the site is that what turned out to be the main objective, the bridge in the center, had been reduced to rubble during earlier fighting.



Vogel placed his IG gunners (earned last battle) on his right while he took his crack troops on the left. The plan was for him to attack the Russian right, where the troops were thinnest, while the IG gun on the other side would rain down fire on whoever stuck their heads above ground.

Vogel and men made their way up the hill and immediately got bogged down in close combat, facing off a squad of similar size and composition. The Russians had an Advance and an Ambush, but unfortunately, Vogel’s attacks kept them broken and suppressed, with Recover cards again rare.

During this battle Vogel learned the value of Rout cards – used on the enemy. Mostly an urban fighter, he thought they were of little use, but in a battle free of buildings and woods, they became deadly, killing off at least two Russian squads. Unfortunately, Cpl. Winkler found out about them, too. The Russians were able to Rout him to the German edge of the board – but he recovered and began to make his way back before his shame was complete.



Using the IG gun to create a crossfire with his own weapons, Vogel kept his Russian counterparts in disarray until he could close on them in Melee. But as soon as the first group was destroyed, there was a second wave to take it’s place. The Russians began to rally, and set up a counter-attack on the German right, attacking the IG gun’s position and suppressing it.

Unfortunately, it was too little, too late. Vogel’s inch-by-inch progress through the Russian left, and the Infiltration of a LMG squad kept the defense on the Russian right in a shambles. When the seventh time check was pulled, it was enough to end the game. Vogel held the initiative and he held the points to win.



So the Germans win again – and the survivors will meet the Russians at a critical point on the next map. If the Germans are victorious a third time, it will be the end of the campaign. But it will take place in a more urban setting – the Russian rail yards. Routing will not be as easy, and the Russians will be desperate with their backs to the Volga.

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Won/Loss
Germany: 2/4
Russia: 1/2
United States: 3/0
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Sat Mar 12, 2011 5:52 am
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#5: Stand and Die - Battle #1 (Scenario 45 - Map #37)

Joe C Faust
United States
Hartville
Ohio
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From 12/18/10:

At this point in my solo career, I decided to play out the Stalingrad Campaign from the Stalingrad Battle Pack. The first battle takes place on Map #37, centered around the hilly edge of Mamayev Kurgan, with the Germans pushing hard and collapsing the defenses on the Russian right.

Of note here is the heroics of German Sgt. Biermann, who successfully stood off two waves of melee. In the first, he led a squad out of the woods into the brush as a preemptory strike against the advancing Soviets. But the Soviets played two Ambushes, leaving Biermann and his squad broken. Unfortunately, as well as the Russians were doing, Biermann pulled a time trigger – boxcars – out of the deck.

Next he rallied and withstood fire that killed the suppressed squad in the hex with him – just in time to be jumped by another Russian squad. No ambushes this time, and the Russians pulled a three from the deck – no match for Biermann’s ten. Add a No Quarter to the end of the second melee, and it made a nice point swing for the Germans after seesawing back and forth. And all of this done without using the initiative card!

In the meantime, on the Russian right, Captain Vogel dithered while trying to help reinforcements in the form of an IG gun find a better position for combat. It ended up a lost cause as something interesting happened. The battle became very Stalingrad-like. The Russians slowly continued to fire and move toward on Biermann, while to the south Vogel moved his men on the entrenched Russians to try and smoke them out. Before long I had two large clumps of point-blank battle going on, each around one set of leaders from each side.

For a few turns, it was brutal. The battle hinged around these two groups hammering at each other. Fire was exchanged, units suppressed and broke, Recover cards were rare and precious, popping up only to give one set of troops or another a second or third chance. Biermann’s group, all broken, used an Advance card to move away from the punishing fire from Gordov’s men, who continued the attack though their corporal was hugging the dirt.

Finally, Vogel’s men went on the attack against the remnants of the Russian right. Down a card from an earlier opportunity fire, they advanced into combat against a Russian leader and squad. It was an all-or-nothing proposition – both sides were two losses away from surrender. Vogel was hoping to pull at least one ambush card in the draw to augment the Initiative card, then survive the Russian turn until the combat resolved.

The Russians had no choice but to discarded for a draw. Vogel ended up pulling two ambushes out of the deck. The Germans carried the day.

So the victorious Germans push further into Stalingrad for the next battle, which occurs on map 37 – the deep ravine with the gully running through the bottom. It looks like Vogel will be sent back to HQ to report on the front, while his Veteran squad will be in the next fight. And rumor has it that Cpl. Gordov has a new assignment... in Siberia.



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Won/Loss
Germany: 1/4
Russia: 1/1
United States: 3/0
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Sat Mar 12, 2011 5:43 am
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#4: Paralyzed From the West Down (Scenario #6 - Map #6)

Joe C Faust
United States
Hartville
Ohio
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From 10/5/10:

Germans suffered from Inferior Unit Syndrome, combined with a lack of fire cards to keep the intruding Americans at bay. Germans retreated back along the main road bisecting the board, but couldn't stand up to advancing Americans with smoke and large fire groups. Americans took 4 of 5 objectives. Germans held up in Objective 4 to be surrounded by paratroopers, who got them in a cross fire for a surrender victory (with 17 points to the Allies on the board).

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Won/Loss
Germany: 0/4
Russia: 1/0
United States: 3/0
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Sat Mar 12, 2011 5:32 am
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#3: RSG - Map #11

Joe C Faust
United States
Hartville
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From 3/4/10:

Randomly Generated Scenario played on Map 11. A German platoon defends against a company of American Rangers intent on exiting the far side of the board. Germans dug into Bunkers and trenches, wire down the length of Row F to form a killing field. Rangers flanked fire teams on each side to pin down the Axis fire. Air support and snipers broke the German left as the Allied center slowly advanced and moved through the wire. American fire slowly wiped out the German left and a Melee with four Ambush cards (!) threw the German casualties over the surrender limit.

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Won/Loss
Germany: 0/3
Russia: 1/0
United States: 2/0
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Sat Mar 12, 2011 5:26 am
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#2: RSG - Map #7

Joe C Faust
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From 3/2/10:

Randomly Generated Scenario played on Map 7. A German platoon infiltrating a defensive position guarded by a Russian detachment. The Germans captured and held the key point. The Russian Militia was unable to take it back, but gained the victory on points as the clock ran out.

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Won/Loss
Germany: 0/2
Russia: 1/0
United States: 1/0
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Sat Mar 12, 2011 5:22 am
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#1: RSG - Map #8

Joe C Faust
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From 2/26/10:

Randomly Generated Scenario played on Map 8. Instead of choosing which OB to play, nationalities were determined than randomly drawn from the chits. German Elite Platoon v. U.S. Elite Platoon. Game ended in U.S. Victory after a German advance into Melee killed everyone in the hex, putting the Germans at their Surrender Level.

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Won/Loss
Germany: 0/1
Russia: 0/0
United States: 1/0
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Sat Mar 12, 2011 5:11 am
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