The Lions of Lodowice: Turn #1

Engine roar bounces between ravaged building facades. Battered exhausts cough inky ectoplasm into frigid air. Caterpillar tracks claw at brown snow and frozen rubble… Tally-Ho Corner’s first PvP play-by-comment Combat Mission scrap is underway at last!

Both the Germans and the Soviets field four AFVs at the start of Turn #1. Thanks to random spawns (in the thick fog that lifted just before this engagement began, several of the tank commanders battling for the Silesian town of Lodowice lost their bearings) the T-34-85 and the Jagdpanzer IV start in somewhat isolated positions. Will they hurry to rejoin their comrades in the first sixty seconds of WeGo action?

^ Initial positions and rough guide to movement in turn one. German: T = Tiger, P = Panther, KT = King Tiger, J = Jagdpanzer. Soviet: IS = IS-2, T = T-34-85, SU = SU-100, M = M4A2(76) Sherman

It seems not. Instead of heading in the direction of the Boleslav Bridge in the centre of the map, the T-34-85 beetles into the maze of narrow streets south of the brewery yard. The German TD opts to move deeper into enemy territory, proceeding NE to an ambush spot (f1NE) on the northern edge of the arena.

Perhaps wary of a cheeky attack from the rear, the Tiger skirts the western side of the planetarium. At T+60 it’s stationary on the northern side of Warsaw Street eyeing the recently vacated brewery and its environs. After an eastward perambulation the King Tiger pivots to port and follows Fish Street, halting at approximately e14NE. Meanwhile, the Panther advances SE to a sheltered location circa c6E where it can survey the river banks without fear of flank shots.

Meanwhile on the eastern side of the ice-fringed Vistula, the Lend-Lease Sherman makes for Willow Street via the eastern map edge. Like the SU-100 which ends the turn about to swing onto the cobbles of East Street, it’s still rolling in the direction of the Boleslav Bridge when the clock stops.

Copernicus Street, the east-west thoroughfare in the top-right corner of the map, is pummelled by the tracks of a purposeful IS-2 during this turn. When the IS-2 in question reaches g1SE, its commander is somewhat taken aback to see a pivoting German TD a stone’s throw away to the NW. The equally-surprised Jagdpanzer TC has time to direct a desperate “Schnell!” at his driver, but the imprecation fails to hasten the TD’s painfully slow rotation.

There’s a blinding muzzle flash, and a tooth-rattling peal of thunder.

The smoke clears to reveal a thoroughly kaput tank destroyer. The Germans begin Turn #2 with only three AFVs!

(Next order deadline: midday GMT, July 20)


  1. Yesterday in Ikea I saw a peculiar poster. It had the following text:
    IS 2
    I found it a bit daft. But after this report, I understand what the designer wanted to convey.

  2. A long sigh of relief condenses in the frosty air and streams out behind them as the Brad-Pitt-look-a-like commanding the rolling Sherman finally removes the radio handset pressed to his ear.

    Unfastening the larger of two leather-wrapped hipflasks he takes a stiff drink, grimaces with satisfaction, then passes the acrid liquor container down into the clanking compartment of the tank.

    “Report’s in comrades! One down, three to go . . .”

  3. May expectations were way off. You guys completely skipped the whole sneaky part and went straight at it. Good show!

    Poor Jagdpanzer IV. It seems it will always be in the shadow of more iconic machines. On the other hand, the soviet medium weight trundler also looks to be ina somewhat precarious situation, boxed in between the Tiger and his bigger, meaner brother.

  4. The staccato thuds of German ammunition cooking-off echo through the winding streets behind the Soviet tank hunter as it trundles south, accompanied by a grim tune whistled by it’s commander.

    “‘Peter and the Wolf’, by Prokofiev!” he tells the young gunner. “When this done, we shall visit the Bolshoi, you and I.”

    The lad clears his throat tentatively. “Er, actually sir, I think that that is ‘Dance of t–”

    “Nonsense!” snorts the commander. “I think I would know Danzov if I heard him, silly boy. It is definitely Prokofiev. Now stop distracting me, we have a war to win! Bozhe-moi, you can take the boy out of the Oblast…”

    • “Huh, and I thought we taught the intelligentishki to behave in the 20’s…” – whispers Ruslan, the ever proficient driver, under his breath, wondering how long will take for commander to utter something he could bring to the commissar. Well, if the commander keeps doing his job as well as last minute, maybe, just maybe, he could forgive his displays of superiority over the working class

  5. The night before this post was scheduled to go live, I had trouble getting to sleep. I can feel the nerves building again already.

    It’s a thrilling format—if you didn’t get in on this one, and there’s another in the future, try it out!

Comments are closed.