Copyright © 2019, Paul Scrivens-Smith

Copyright © 2019, Paul Scrivens-Smith

All rights reserved. This work may not be reproduced, in whole or in part, without the prior written permission of the creator.
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Friday, 12 December 2014

“They Shall Not Pass!” - SCW using Chain of Command

Yesterday evening I had my first Spanish Civil War game since we played at Partizan at the beginning of September. Over three months and I have been ready to get the figures out for quite some time now.

Fortunately, James agreed to a game yesterday evening at the White Hart and I was able to oblige.

We pitted a Centuria of Falange Espanol against a Republican Militia column.

My initial Nationalist force of Falangists was:

  • Jefe de Centuria and Subjefe plus 3 Falangistas
  • Two sections each: Jefe de Falange and 4 Falangistas, two teams each 5 Falangistas

James would be using the UGT Workers Militia:

  • Jefe de Centuria
  • Four sections each 10 Milicianos

To balance the forces James took an Army Officer Advisor, an LMG and a Sniper.

Rolling for Force Morale we both threw a six and were Force Morale: 9.

We would play the Delaying Action scenario, using his 'No Pasaran!' rule James elected to defend. After the Patrol phase the Jump-off Points were as per the image on the left. Republican in red and Nationalist in white. My objective would be the red jump-off point on the right of the image in the olive grove.

I rolled a 7 for Force Support adding a Hotchkiss M1914 MMG, and making my Jefe de Centuria a 'proper' Senior Leader, James elected to add three sections of light cover barricades.

The Nationalists went first and deployed their HQ scouts and MMG team up against the hedgerow. Taking the bait James deployed pretty much all his troops while I left the remainder of mine off.

The MMG started a very one sided exchange of fire with Milicianos deployed behind their barricades behind the shack opposite and soon it was running out of targets to engage. I had even hit the Jefe de Centuria twice - you can see him taking a rest in the image.

The two sections of Falange deployed behind the rough ground on the right and out of sight of the enemy started to head towards the enclosed field. The militia defending the gap between the house and the Taberna gave some desultory opportunity fire and my first section was in the field, the other was taking cover from enemy fire behind the building.

The Republicans then decided to deploy their 'ace' sniper on the roof of the Taberna. It was obvious from the effect that the chap had turned up with an expensive hunting rifle and tales of derring-do. He was pathetic! Every time he took a shot, needing a 3+ to hit, he missed. When he finally did score a hit he failed to even cause a point of shock. Big Game Hunter indeed!

The Nationalist LMG was set up in the field and soon engaging the Republicans defending the gap between the Taberna and the house with very effective fire. The second section broke cover from behind the building and soon had taken the barricades and were bayoneting the survivors.

The Nationalist LMG was moved up to the barricades and started to engage the Republicans near the objective while a section of Falangista went into the Taberna and set fire to the roof beams to flush out that sniper, although given his effectiveness they could have probably left him there all day!

Seeing the threat developing and already two sections down James rushed one team to take up positions behind the tree-line on his right. This was a very good move, as I was now in a position to threaten two very exposed Jump-off points on opposite corners of the Taberna.

Dead-eyed Republican marksmen
The Falangist section in the field jumped the hedgerow to advance on the closest Jump-off as the newly re-deployed Republicans took up their positions and opened fire. from 10 rifle shots I took two casualties including the Sub-Jefe and six points of shock!

My troops went to ground (Tactical) but the fusillade continued and I was soon broken and running to the rear despite the best efforts Jefe de Centuria I was soon broken and running to the rear.

However, another team of Falangista had cautiously contacted the other Jump-off point and ending the turn with a Chain of Command dice I had captured it.
Nationalists advancing along the shack are about to get some!

I started to move the MMG team to take advantage of the lack of Republican troops.

Things were looking good, despite two hits on his Jefe and two broken/destroyed sections James Force Morale was still at a very reasonable 5 while I was on a 7 and seemed to be in a very good place.

However, having ended the turn my troops who had just captured the Jump-off point lost their tactical and were in a very exposed position. The Republican sharp-shooters behind the tree line soon killed three and inflicted two shock, the remaining Falangista broke for the rear.

Manning - and womanming - the barricades
It was still good though, the Republicans were down to a ten-man section on the tree-line and a handful of men defending the objective with the badly wounded Jefe, while my Hotchkiss was being redeployed to take them apart.

Disaster struck! The Republicans in the tree-line charged towards the Taberna. This should be easy for me, my Jefe de Centuria, a Jefe and six men in hard cover to defend against ten militia. How wrong could I be. Some how, we drew the first round of combat taking four casualties each and in the next round I was killed to a man! Throwing for Force Moral I threw high for each roll and collapsed to a zero!

Game over because my chaps seemed more interesting in looting the Taberna than destroying the Republicans trying to take it.

A great game that I though was in the bag but was snatched at the end. However, I don't think the Falangista are ever allowed to win a game, they have not yet while we have been playing.

All the figures and terrain are from my own collection. The figures are from Empress Miniatures, painted by myself and the buildings are scratch built.



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