Command Decision: Test of Battle (TM) (CDTOB) s a tactical level miniatures war game of WW II combat. First published in 1986, and now in its fourth edition, Command Decision has endured as the gold standard of World War II games for almost a quarter of a century. It emphasizes the two most important aspects of combat at this level -- rapidly changing tactical situations and combined arms operations. It allows tactical battles to play out in real time or faster.
This edition is a major step forward in streamlined mechanics and ease of play. It is not, however, just a simplified version of the rules. It is a much more historically faithful treatment of World War II combat. This combination of streamlined mechanics and historical fidelity won it a GAMA Silver Medal for excellence in 2007.
The game emphasizes the importance of command, troop quality, and use of historical tactics such as suppression of enemy fire, tank-infantry teams, and artillery support. More importantly, it is a game of maneuver – units move on the table, they do not creep forward a few inches between long, involved fire phases.
The game includes data charts for the major belligerents, as well as organizational charts for the most common units in the war. A dozen new historical battle scenarios cover both the east and west front. Supplements concentrating on specific theaters of the war, and specific periods, will include more detailed organizational and weapon information s well as additional battle scenarios. Supplements for the WWI and Modern eras are planned as well.
Test of Battle --
You can play battles with CDTOB the same as you always have. We include a dozen historical battles translated into game terms, and re-fighting historical battles on the game table remains what Command Decision is all about. But the truly revolutionary advance in the game is the Test of Battle section.
As long as we have been playing World War II miniatures games (and as a hint, one of us started when Nixon was president) finding a way to create balanced, interesting, and historically sound battles has been the war gaming equivalent of the Quest for the Holy Grail. "Point systems" seem to end up too fiddly and complicated, and the armies they produce are non-historical steel nightmares. Rules for creating battlefields read like a whole game unto themselves, and end up creating bland, homogenized tabletops with way too little real terrain. And the battles they create! Was there really nothing more to World War II than meeting engagements and deliberate assaults on prepared positions?
Here's what a battle creator has to do:
- Provide a battlefield which has rich and varied terrain, similar to the actual battlefields fought over, but does it with simplicity and a minimum of gamesmanship.
- Provide a way to assemble two opposing armies which is easy to work with, gives players some flexibility in assembling their army, but above all creates balanced, historical forces. The system has to have a way to easily divide a force into parts, only some of which will be used in some missions, and some of which may appear as reinforcements in other missions.
- Provide a wide variety of battlefield missions and situations, so you never know what you're up against for sure until the battle has begun to unfold. Different missions have different objectives, and also different levels of force actually available, so the games are balanced without just matching equal forces against each other over and over.
Test of Battle delivers that. We think it's the best battle creation system out there.
Campaign and Army Books in Preparation for Command Decision: Test of Battle (TM)
Each campaign book will include extensive orders of battle for both sides, unit organization charts, historic battles, one or more mini-campaigns, and a detailed campaign commentary.
THE BENGHAZI HANDICAP: The North African Campaign,
BENGHAZI HANDICAP: The War in North Africa 1940-41, is the first campaign supplement for COMMAND DECISION: Test of Battle. It is a beautifully produced 170-page book, with twelve pages of color, and it is the most detailed coverage of the German, Italian, and British desert armies to date.
If you love the North Africa Campaign, then this book is definitely for you.
*An overview history of the desert, with orders of battle for every critical operation operation from June of 1940 through December of 1941.
*Special rules covering the unique aspect of the desert war – visibility in the desert, sand storms, entrenchments, tactical use of soft vehicles, and more.
*Equipment charts and unit organizations for all nationalities in the desert for the period covered: German, Italian, British, Indian, Australian, New Zealand, South African, and Polish, with extensive notes on national variations in equipment and organization on a division by division basis.
*Detailed divisional orders of battle for every division in North Africa, showing it components at each major battle, as well as most major attachments. German panzer division listings include the breakdown of the division component units into battle groups at critical battles.
*Twelve new historical battles presented as game battles – covering the entire span of the period, from the first clash between medium tanks in Africa (Gabr el Ahmar, on 5 August 1940) to the last shots of the British pursuit following the Crusader Offensive (Chor es Sufan).
*Extensive painting guides for vehicles and troops, along with two pages of color insignia, and a guide to constructing great-looking desert terrain.
OPERATION MARKET GARDEN
An overview history of the Market Garden campaign, from inception to completion, following each airborne division: the 101st around Eindhoven, the 82nd around Nijmegen, and the British 1st Airborne around Arnhem.
10 historical battles presented as game battles – covering the entire operation, from the initial breakout by XXX Corps (September 17th, 1944) to the bitter end, after the British toehold at Arnhem Bridge had been eliminated, and the operation had been stalled on the Island.
After the Normandy landings, over 25 major airborne operations were planned by the Allied high command and cancelled for one reason or another. Finally, on September 10th, 1944, Field Marshall Montgomery met with Dwight Eisenhower at Melsbroek airfield outside of Brussels. At this meeting, Montgomery won approval for an ambitious plan to allow the Allies to drive from Belgium through Holland and then cross the Rhine River into Germany – an operation that called for three airborne divisions to be landed in stages over three days miles behind enemy lines - code name: Market Garden.
STAR AND STRIPES FOREVER: The United States Army in the West in World War II
From the Torch landings in North Africa in November of 1942 through Sicily, Italy, Normandy, the Bulge, and the final collapse of the Third Reich, the United States Army was the principal instrument of victory of the Western allies. Its story is the story of the road to that victory, a road which was not invariably straight or smooth.
Regardless of what rule system you play with, this supplement is the indispensable and definitive guide to the United States Army in Europe and the Mediterranean in World War II. It includes organizational and order of battle information not available in any other single volume
THE HONOR OF THE REGIMENT: The British and Commonwealth Armies in the West in World War II
A complete list of British, Canadian, Australian, New Zealand, Indian, South African, and African divisions (infantry, armored, airborne, and cavalry) which fought in the European and Mediterranean theaters in Word War II, including their campaign honors and their component brigades, regiments, and battalions.
Regardless of what rule system you play with, this supplement is the indispensable and definitive guide to the Soviet armored and mobile forces in World War II.
* TO&E charts for all Soviet mobile (tank, mechanized, and cavalry) corps, divisions, and separate brigades and regiments in World War II, including organizational and equipment changes.
* Overview of Soviet tactical doctrine, training, and combat effectiveness – including the role of pre-war theorists such as Tukhachevsky, and the Great Purge.
* Complete list of all Soviet tank and mechanized divisions at the outbreak of Barbarossa, with actual tank strengtsh (in game terms) by tank type.
* Revised and expanded Soviet data charts.
* Aircraft ratings for all Soviet combat aircraft in the west.
RED TIDE Soviet Infantry and Artillery in World War II, 1939-1945
From 1941 through the spring of 1944 the Red Army bore the principal burden of opposing the German Wehrmacht on the continent of Europe. The armored and mobile forces would eventually be forged into a weapon capable of smashing the German armed forces, but it was the infantry and artillery which held the Germans at bay in the critical fighting of 1941 and 1942, and kept the Soviet Union in the war.
Regardless of what rule system you play with, this supplement is the indispensable and definitive guide to the Soviet infantry and artillery in World War II. It includes organizational and order of battle information not available in any other single volume.
*TO&E charts for all Soviet infantry and artillery divisions, and separate brigades and regiments in World War II, including organizational and equipment changes. Among the less common, but important, units covered are: NKVD Border Guards and Internal Security troops Airborne Rifle brigades and corps Ski brigades and battalions, along with attached aerosan units. Naval infantry brigades.
*Revised and expanded Soviet data charts.
*Aircraft ratings for all Soviet combat aircraft in the west.
*Appendices cover the strength and organization of the Soviet-organized forces of Czechoslovakia and Poland.
In the Clutches of Eagles
In 1940 Germany stunned the world with its far reaching strikes behind enemy lines. The tools of this new style of warfare: the men of the 7th Flieger Division. The Fallschirmjäger would participate on every major front of the war, from hot African deserts to the snowy wastes of Russia. The Fallschirmjäger, like their Allied counterparts, would be known for their excellent training, courage, and morale.
This book follows the Fallschirmjäger as they grow from a small, battalion size force in the pre-war years, expanding in size to a single division, and then eventually expanding into their full strength in 1944.