Lions of Lodowice – Soviet mess

Control one of the Soviet AFVs in THC’s 2023 play-by-comment Combat mission game? Use the comment section of this password-protected post to discuss tactics with your comrades, and communicate orders to me, the GM.

(link to CMx2 manual)


  1. Option 3 it is. FoW will vanish for a reason yet to be determined during turn 16. Control of Boleslav Bridge by turn 30 is now the name of the game.

    I’m going to be AFCMRT (Away From Combat Mission Red Thunder) until Tuesday night so let’s make that the new order deadline. I’ll aim to post a turn report on Wednesday morning.

  2. ORDER TURN 16

    FAST H5N,
    FAST H4W (close to the corner of the building in that square, in-line with the opening between the houses to the SW
    Face SW

    With the curtain going up next turn, I’d like to be somewhere that I could potentially net a quick kill from next turn. I doubt the Tiger will sit in the open, so should be safe till then.

  3. I suppose the halftrack needs some dudes in the back to run the gun, then? That’s a bummer. Or was there a dude in the back besides the passengers, who is no longer present?

    The Krauts have a bit of an edge on us in AT firepower, for the moment…

  4. Oh heck yeah those southern scouts were in perfect ambush position. Alright, we’re gonna have to get our sniper out of there real fast before the tank starts shooting, but otherwise I think we have a real shot at this.

  5. (intended as a reply to Fishbreath’s last post)

    Counter-intuitively, embarked infantry won’t man the Ma Deuce. Having run some experiments , in order to make use of the MG you will need to dismount the current driver, and replace him with the nearby Sherman crew.

    (Apologies for not mentioning the lack of an HT gunner earlier. I’d assumed all vehicles arrived fully crewed)

    • I actually adore the idea that only the Sherman crew can figure out the business end of a MG. It’s going to be so exciting trying to unite the two before they blow up either one.

  6. TURN 16

    I’m thinking: unite the halftrack with the Sherman crew, put the north scouts in a building somewhere.

    Do we have a larger plan for securing the bridge?

    • I generally like the spread of our forces, but we are kinda lacking in long range firepower beyond the tank hunter, and the AT unit at e9 is probably keeping me from peeking forward for now. My current position does keep the Germans south of the university, so maybe we could get units across the North Bridge? Seems very risky – a lot of open ground to cover. My big question is where they will send the PAK-40. My guess is somewhere along the south – i16, say- where they have a view north, but we would be hard pressed to threaten it (we have a nicely placed ambush unit to stop things crossing, but nothing to threaten forces on the opposite bank).

      • I think we’re just in a real bind in general. Infantry concealment and ambush is such a big part of the CM engine. I don’t know how anyone can approach the bridge when there are two big cannons on overwatch.

        On the other hand, a game with only partial info on both sides isn’t exciting to spectate.

        My strategy would be to move the north scouts and AT team over the north bridge using FAST and parking them behind the wrecked tank, hopefully aided by infantry suppressing fire.

        In the south we’ll need our TD to take out their MG team or we can’t advance there, but without any AT assets we can’t threaten the big cat with anything else.

  7. ORDER TURN 17

    If I have any LoS from my current position to the occupied building at thr western end of Boleslav bridge, target it. If not, just stick to last turn’s order – I don’t want to move any further forward.

  8. ORDER TURN 17

    REVERSE j8E (make the keyhole a little harder for the Tiger to see, without coming up toward the SU-100)

    Sherman crew:
    QUICK j8E, board halftrack (they have a vehicle again!)

    North scouts: hold position. (Maybe next turn we can get the halftrack to put some fire on the Panther crew or the Germans opposite us on the Boleslav bridge, to enable a dash across the north bridge.)

    Flamethrower team: hold position. (I like where they are, in the ‘reverse-slope defense’ way.)

    • @Tim: will mounting the half track be enough for the tank crew to take over, or does the existant team need to bail first?

      @Fishbreath I think we need to FAST the crew out of there or they are likely to be minced by area target this turn.

      If they need to trade, maybe
      Sherman crew FAST to i7se
      QUICK to i8ne level 1
      and then next turn we trade the crews?

      • Let’s amend the Sherman crew order to FAST out of the building.

        If they just need to board the halftrack to operate the gun, do that. If they need to replace the current crew, follow Oneknown’s order suggestion above and we’ll do it on turn 18.


    Sniper SLOW and HIDE to level 1 k10se

    North AT team QUICK to G1w
    SLOW and HIDE to f1 level 1

  10. TURN 18

    I’m assuming the panzerfausts in B are trained on my location. What are the odds I beat them to the draw if I poke my nose out? I dodged the decision last turn, but don’t see much alternative, particularly with the half track machine gun no longer an option

  11. ORDER: TURN 18

    Move forward far enough to target the building with the B infantry, then fire on whichever floor the Panzerfausts occupy.
    Wait 45 seconds, then reverse to current location.

    This is a gamble that I don’t love, but I think it’s time to shove our chips in. We are outgunned and will almost certainly lose a war of attrition so need to take the initiative. This is probably also a good turn to get infantry over north bridge – the AT grenadiers serve very little purpose on this side of the water and the explosions around Boleslav (mine or otherwise) might give them a little window of distraction.

  12. TURN 18

    Oof. (Sorry for missing the deadline, again; I seem to have some kind of mental block about Sunday nights. Maybe I should put a calendar event in.)

    I suppose the real-world Soviet maneuver, at this point, would be to call in another dozen or so T-34s, which is probably out of the question here. The north is pretty much the only way we can get soldiers to the other side of the river.

    I guess we put the remaining Sherman crewman into the halftrack (hopefully that gives us machine gun capabilities?), but the Tiger’s position means we probably can’t hit the building-with-infantry across the bridge without getting the halftrack blown up too. Maybe find a keyhole view where we can try to hit the infantry at c4?

  13. TURN 19

    Sorry for not getting my two cents in here. I think we actually had a decent chance due to our positioning, if not due to our forces. We had such strong flank control, with a clear river crossing above, and a much stronger southern force.

    But how one panzershrek and a few grenades is supposed to compete with an AT gun, a panzerfaust , and a panzershrek? That was going to be us defiantly resisting a stronger foe. Not having an MG on that halftrack didn’t help.

    But to tame a Tiger now? I think that could only ever have happened if we were on the defensive and it was forced to go through the streets. I’m happy to resign this one and my input.

  14. @Tim: I want to thank you for your recommendation of Duffer’s Drift. Reading it gave me a lot of insight on how to fight this battle. My scout ambush position, sniper location, and northern AT team crossing plan all came from insights in that text. And beyond that, thanks so much for running this lengthy and complicated game. It was a lot of fun.

    • My pleasure. It’s good to hear Duffer’s Drift is still proving useful over a century after it was written!

      On reflection, I’m not sure Lions of Lodowice was a complete success. I possibly should have combined the original ‘destroy the enemy’ victory condition with a VL or two, and stuck to my original ‘infantry-behaviour/movement-determined-by-pre-written-scripts’ idea.

      That said, the scrap definitely had its moments, and did, I think, prove that PvP play-by-comment CM is practical.

  15. So is that us? The situation does look pretty much hopeless now. Sorry for not posting sooner (and for getting our last tank wrecked). Been trying to weigh up the benefits of continuing, but it does feel like delaying the inevitable.

  16. I agree with copperbottom and Oneknown that we don’t have many options beyond conceding here—without ranged AT, we can’t stop the Tiger from setting up somewhere it can see just about everything, and blasting any infantry we try to get close to it. Tomorrow, the glorious people’s crusade against the fascist invaders will continue with overwhelming force, but today, I think our opponents have stopped us.

    It was a nail-biter almost all the way through, and tremendously fun to take part in. Comment Commander has always been one of my favorite recurring TFP/THC features. I look forward to the next one, PvP or not. I’ll let someone else take a crack at it if it’s PvP, but I feel comfortable enough with the format now (PvP leaving me no choice but to get comfortable!) to pitch in next during the next co-op outing.

    Thanks for your efforts in making this happen, Tim.

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