Draw Your Sabres – Cossacks Command Cards

Hello All

One of the most common questions we have got since Enemy At The Gates was announced was “will there be a Cossack’s list”. Now while the book doesn’t have a list (not too surprising as they aren’t popular enough to have a plastic set), the command cards do allow for a Cossack army. 

Firstly let us look at the cavalry rules. This command card is an upgrade for a Hero or Regular infantry company that gives you improved movement, most on the dash and charge speeds. While it’s nice to have two options I think you really only have one to get the most out of it. I would think the Hero unit is the better choice as you already get a 6-inch charge with the normal infantry so the benefit is less useful. If like me, you are made enough to paint up multiple companies of Cavalry then you will be happy to see there are also two formation command cards. You get the choice of both Hero Cossacks and Normal Cossacks, both lists are the same except for the main platoons. It should be noted that your HQ can’t be upgraded to be cav and that you don’t have to upgrade all your platoons.

 

I have made a list using the formations, I have gone for a Hero list as I feel it’s the better option (as I talked about above). So with this in mind after the mandatory HQ and 2 combat companies, I decided to add a 3rd company. As this is an aggressive army you want the extra company to make sure your assault hits home, also you will take losses so an extra company for formation moral is welcome.

Next up to aid in the assault I added some KV-1s. I was going to add Stuarts for the speed, MG’s to stop counter attacks and for a big extra assault unit. But I had plenty of points left and KV-1’s look better.

To aid the army getting into position, the next addition was a company of BA-10’s at a bargain 2 points. This means the KV-1 should be in assault range turn 2 if needed and the Cossacks should have their pick of assault targets.

Now we have covered anti-infantry, I thought it was best to cover anti-tank. The first call was four 57mm Anti-Tank guns. These bad boys are AT 11 and are cautions so hit on a 4+. Also to be multi-role and aid with the anti-tank I have added two batteries of 76mm artillery. I went with the artillery over the anti-tank option as I didn’t want to lean too much one way, this way they can bombard if needed or give me eight AT 9 shots from each battery and for this variety they are hit on a 3+ instead of a 4+. Also if you are looking at your own future list the 76mm artillery, the 122mm artillery and Katyusha are all interchangeable in this list.

I had 4 points left over so I add two AT-Rifles and the volley fire command card. The command card is an one use only card that gives you re-rolls to hit for one unit once at short range, this will mostly be used on the 57mms if a tank platoon gets too close or when they pop out of ambush.

  • Hero HQ 1 point
  • Full Hero Rifle platoon + 1x AT-Rifle + Cossacks 10pts
  • Full Hero Rifle platoon + 1x AT-Rifle + Cossacks 10pts
  • Full Hero Rifle platoon + Cossacks 9pts
  • 4 Kv1s 32pts
  • 3 Ba-10s 2pts
  • 4 57mm 18pts
  • 4 76mm artillery 8pts
  • 4 76mm artillery 8pts
  • Volley Fire 2pts
  • 100pts

So there is your quick look at Cossacks. It should be noted that you don’t need to use the Cavalry models with the card and technically you can just use the card on infantry models and they get the cavalry movement. But the modeller inside on me could never do that! Part of the fun and allure of playing Cossacks (or any cavalry for that matter) is the look or it on the table. seeing the horse, the high of the model and the glorious charge into the enemies guns!

I’m pledging now I’m going make an army (if I can get the models as they are currently out of stock…. if anyone has any they are willing to sell please message me!) for Reading Warfare and their Mid War event. As you guys will know, I love a painting challenge 😉

I hope this has been insightful and give you some ideas (but please don’t order any unit I get my ones 😉 )

Thanks, Ben

Category: BattlefrontEastern FrontFlames of WarList DiscussionMid WarSoviets

13 comments

  1. Thanks for the article! I, too, have lots (LOTS) of Cossacks. Sadly, they get worse each version BF releases. No Cavalry HQ, an added cross check, plus for 2 points a unit you get some extra movement but also seven (count ’em) restrictions on their use or capability.

    Also, I see a Tchanka or two in one of your pictures, but it isn’t apparent to me that they can be used now.

    I really like cavalry (have Russian, Dutch, Japanese, Polish, and even German Kosaken units) but, sadly, they don’t see much table time any more. Want to buy some?

    1. My read of the Cavalry card is that it applies to all infantry teams from a Cossall Regiment – which would include the HQ and Machine gun Company (tachankas). Seems pretty reasonable for 2pts?

  2. I got a bit of the bug from reading this. But then reality set in when I discovered that 10 stands of cavalry and 10 stands of infantry to swap them with was going to cost $80 US. Unless BF gets a wild hair and decides to make some blisters with their new resin process this option will rarely be seen in its true glory.

    1. The real cost is not the purchase price, it’s the time and effort to build and paint three times the figures of an infantry unit (horse, rider, dismount). Each time I build a cavalry unit I swear it’s the last one I’ll ever do.

  3. Since you can now basically just upgrade the infantry without replacing the base, can I now base the mounted cossacks on medium bases (2 / base) ? This would be a good way to limit costs and painting and still have a nice force of mounted models (16 medium bases of cavalry still look pretty good) and you get to use half the number of models you would use for large bases.

    1. Don’t know what the V4 basing standard is for cavalry, but it used to be 4 mounted per large base. I did all mine (5 different nationalities) at 3 mounted per base to save time and money. The mounted stand is replaced by a four-figure dismounted stand so I personally wouldn’t go below 3 mounted per base, but you’re free to model them as you desire, of course.

  4. Even if the HQ can be Cavalry- you have to pay 2 points per unit which receives the cavalry status. And after dismounting you can never mount up again. This seems rather expensive on a small HQ unit.

  5. Hi Ben, if I ever get into Flames of War I would field German cavalry on the Eastern Front, but I don’t think that’s an option with version 4 (probably not covered in “Cross of Iron”).
    I know it’s an option in version 3, there’s an article on the FoW web-site somewhere, and as far as I remember you just use Soviet points and models…
    My problem is that I would need to paint up two small armies to get a friend interested, and only version 4 has a small Soviet infantry list (“Hero company”) – by small I mean the number of stands you need to paint. Do you think it would work with the 2 points upgrade to turn a German version 4 infantry unit into a cavalry unit – or would it make the game less balanced in version 4 for the Germans to have this option? (maybe it’s even a bad option for the Germans). As you will gather, I am an absolute beginner in Flames, but if I ever start building an army, it would include German cavalry (renegade Cossacks) on the Eastern front…(there is something about cavalry models dashing gloriously into enemy fire)…

  6. Hi Jan,

    That is a very interesting question… there is no easy analogue for a German cavalry company for the eastern front. That being said there is a Command Card for Ghost Panzer which allows you to mount all infantry in kubelwagen. This boosts their dash movement to 10″/16″/40″ gives them a cross rating of 4+ and changes them to unarmoured tank teams with a 4+ save. It also means that they cannot assault which kind of feels right for horsemen using their movement as a weapon on the wide-reaching steppes rather than as impact cavalry.

    Take a look – it’d be good to hear what you think
    – Dunc

  7. Hi, Duncan. Thank you for your suggestion. I only have “Enemy at the Gates” and not “Iron Cross” (not yet), so don’t know the difference in points between say a German grenadier platoon and a Soviet hero company. However, rather than using the kubelwagen-mounted infantry stats you mention, I think I would just use the Cossacks stats and the Soviet hero rifle company points (7 points) for a German renegade cossacks platoon (+ 2 points for the Command Card) and see how that goes. After all, my games would never be tournament play, so would experiment to gain a balanced game. Thanks, anyway.
    Jan

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Article by: Ben Davy