The following rules can be applied to any scenario unless the scenario specifically states in the special rules section of the scenario that the Commanders option must be used or must be ignored.
Eight Commander cards (three each for the Germans and Americans, two for the British) allow players to further customize their strategies by letting each side select a battlefield commander for that side. This commander allows that side to replace one of the Strategy decks used in a scenario with one of the 10-card Leadership decks associated with that commander. When a player would normally draw a Strategy card, he may instead draw a card from his side’s chosen Leadership deck. Note that when Leadership decks are used in a scenario, cards that affect Strategy decks affect the Leadership decks as well.
In order to use Commander cards and Leadership decks, players must do the following:
- Both sides must agree to use the Commander cards. If the players controlling these sides do not agree, neither side can employ a Commander card.
- If all players agree, the next step is for each side to choose its Commander card and Leadership deck. The Division 1 player of the side without initiative selects first, choosing which Commander card his side will use along with one of the two Leadership decks listed on that card. A player may only select a commander of his nation.
- The Division 1 player of the side with the initiative card now selects his side’s Commander card and Leadership deck. If the player selects a commander that uses the Leadership deck selected by his opponent, he must use the other Leadership deck option on the Commander card
Example: Both players decide they will play with commanders, and they decide to play the Breakout Through St. Lo campaign scenario. Since the Americans have the initiative, the German player chooses first and selects Walter Model and his Watchdog Leadership deck to take the place of his Ground Support I deck.
The American player then selects James Earl Rudder and his Assaulter Leadership deck to take the place of the American Air Support deck..
Players should keep the scenario goals in mind when deciding whether to implement this option. The “Air Raider” deck, in particular, uses numerous cards that utilize air supply drops/paratroopers that can cause a game imbalance in scenarios where the goal is to capture a particular hex. Also, if the scenario calls for a particular card to be removed (like “Paratroopers”), then a Leadership deck with that card in it should not be used.