Monday, January 14, 2019

Chain of Command and What a Tanker - Russian Front 1941, scenarios and buildings


When I try to set deadlines for myself in completing projects, I find myself trying to do anything else but what I need to do. For my Second Battle of Kharkov supplement, I have no need of a large urban church. So I worked on a large urban church yesterday. Actually, that was quite fun. I am using the Church of the Dormition in Kharkov as the inspiration for the church. What this church has is a number of Greek/Roman accents. There are false pillars along the walls and that triangular thing at the roof. This presented a problem as the angle of the roof was much steeper than what I want to model. I am solving this by creating a false front that will have the columns and the triangular top piece that will overlay the existing structure and cover the existing roof angle. This will provide enough additional height to allow the doors and the stained glass windows to be visible with the false front attached.

That is the plan for the bottom floor. Next will be the tower. I haven't figured out what I want to do. The church of the Dormition is a two story structure while my TTCombat building is a single story structure in a cruciform shape. The Dormition church is in more of a 'T' Shape. This does not bother me that much. The goal is to resemble and not duplicate.

The steeple structures are radically different. The base level of the steeple of the Dormition was a square shape which is good as that is the shape that I have for the TTCombat church. But again, the angle of the roof is wrong. This will have to be corrected with a false front again and a new roof structure. This will be from thick card or cardboard. The biggest change will be the top of the steeple. I have a small onion dome from a paper terrain church. It is a nifty wooden one. The only thing it lacks is a coptic cross to put on the top. It came silver but I will probably repaint it gold. The junction between the steeple roof and the onion dome is something I have not figured out yet.

To help with the project, I am photocopying the parts. Then drawing the facade over the top of the photo copies. I can then photocopy that as much as I need to and use it as a template to cut out the parts I need from the cardboard sheeting. Well, that is the thought at this stage of things.


And instead of writing new scenarios, I started to look at old ones. One thing that I intend to include in the SBoK Supplement is a guide for What a Tanker themed games for the battle. The 3rd Panzer Divisions counter attack on the Soviet columns had a number of encounters that would work in either Chain of Command or in What a Tanker. In some places, the rolling advance of the 3rd Panzer almost lends itself to What a Tanker even better than Chain of Command as there were a number of pure armor encounters.

The problem is that the Soviets were in trouble by this point. Short of fuel, ammo and food, the Soviet tanks could not be as aggressive as they had been just a few days earlier at the start of the campaign where they encountered no German tanks. That reminded me of a scenario that I had written for one of the first encounters by the Germans with Soviet T-34 tanks on June 23rd, 1941. Soviet T-34s of the 10th Tank Division ran into a patrol of five tanks from the 15th Panzer Regiment.

Anyway, I don't want to give up the story here. If anyone is interested in a copy of this scenario, please give me an email and I will mail it to you. Even better, if you want the scenario and one of my Chain of Command books (Campaign for Kharkov or In the Name of Roma), I will knock 50% off of the scenario book if you email me that you found this here. This will not work with the buy it now buttons here nor on Wargame Vault or Amazon. (Just too lazy to integrate them.) Just directly through me. You can reach out to me through the contact me on the "talk to Me" form on the left of this post.

Also, I would love to hear play tests of this scenario. I am planning to run a couple myself in the near future. I'd love to hear back from you on how they worked. The terrain is tricky since it is just one big hill with lots of undulations to hide tanks in.


  1. I've heard nothing but good things about "What a Tanker"!

    1. It is a very fun game. My 10 year old son loves it.