Monday, August 29, 2022

1st Chechen war 1994 - Bolt Action meets Ambush Alley - Part 1

Chechnya 1994.....

A two player game with lots of fog of war....

A Russian Federation Armoured column has orders to secure a Forward Operating Base (FOB) at the far end of the table neither player no the make up of each others forces or their orders. The Chechens have orders to damage the any Russian forces but to keep their own loses light.

The game Russians win once the target building is secure or they are forced to turn back due to losses.

The Russians can enter anywhere on the short edge in the forefront of the picture above. The Chechen's are already in place marked on a map including 2 IED's to slow the Russian advance.

Three sections of Infantry supported by a BRDM2 Scout Car and MBT to support the column.

The Russians opt for an initial advance down the railway line not as fast as the main road but the hope is it will be more lightly defended. As the BTR clears the wood yard the defenders fire off an RPG which narrowly misses the APC.

Russian Infantry debus and seek cover as the APC's HMG pours fire into the defenders who fall back. The Russians don't have it all there own way as snipers pick off a number of key figures in the squad.

The column resumes its progress armour backs up on the raised track heading north, the Chechen commander unware of what is the target or mission.

As the defenders rush to fresh positions they land a blow on the fast moving Russians another RPG round knocking out the BRDM2 as it rushes to find cover.

Victory was short lived as the T80 makes it's presence felt a HE shell smashes into one of the ruins killing a troublesome sniper and half a squad. 

The Russian objective is revealed and with Armour and infantry 50 yards from the large concrete two story building the Chechen out of position and with rising casualties are forced to fall back. The Russians have their FOB.

A short but bloody encounter, we used a mixture of Ambush Alley, Modern Bolt Action and Order Dice from Blucher to restrict the number of actions available each turn. A couple of rule errors which we will correct for the next game.... (It would help if the BA rules were better layout.....)

Next up the remaining Russians need to hold the FOB...

Tuesday, August 23, 2022

Operation Exporter 1941 - A new project looms....

With all the desert gaming of late and the Outremer project looming large in 2023, another small project lands on the painting desk. Having been given a present of a box of 8th Army, it opened up pandora's box for a new project. I had always had a hankering for the French Foreign Legion and then I read about Operation Exporter and the British operations against Vichy France.
A little known campaign of WW2.

In May 1941, the pro-Axis Rashid Ali rose to power in Iraq and refused to allow British manoeuvres within his country Britain quickly restored the status quo by driving Ali and his followers out of Iraq (now that could be an interesting game......) To ensure that German military supplies shipped to Ali via Syria did not result in Axis control of that country and neighbouring Lebanon, Britain decided to take preventive action. With Australian and Indian support, as well as that of Free French forces, Britain invaded both Syria and Lebanon, fighting Vichy French garrisons loyal to Germany. On June 8 1941 Operation Exporter began.

The British and General de Gaulle's free Free French hoped to rally the Army of the Levant (45,000 men) to the allied cause and capture the airfields that had been used by German and Italian aircraft to support the Iraq rebellion.

The allied force of 20,000 expected this to be a simple task but faced surprisingly stubborn resistance from the Vichy French regulars and their colonial troops.

Now this is the type of project that is right up my street, an eclectic mix of units on both sides, strange vehicles and scratch forces. 

So with an order from Perry's for some extra heads and some French colonial troops to add to the lead pile.

So the 8th Army are to become Indians.... and the French troops can fight on both sides should I decide to expand to the Western desert.

Heads snipped and new heads on........

Not sure on a rule set yet, maybe Chain of Command or Bolt Action.
Time to hit the books and think about future purchases.

Friday, August 19, 2022

Rising Sun, Tumbling Bear #3 - The Russians Counter Attack.

Before the turn is even underway the Russians attack Chinampo as an event card orders the Russians to attack the closest forces to Port Arthur.

Whilst the Japanese have the greater number of points 240 Points vs 180 Russians, they had only finite points in each command and the table was heavily weighted on the Russian side. So the Japanese opted for a number of fixed defences to keep the Russians at bay.

The large hill contained a number of emplacements with MG's and an artillery piece covering the road and bridge. A company of Infantry were held in reserve on the rear of the hillside.

In the dense wood on the right the Japanese lined the tree line unsure of where the attack would come.

The answer lay in the opening bombardment, heavy shells landed amongst the pine trees and the Japanese suffered multiple shock points. A trick learnt from the previous encounter.

The Russians came on in a mass column heading straight for the shock riddled defenders. Meanwhile Cossack cavalry rode forward looking to exploit any gap.

The Japanese fell back into the interior of the wood as the Russians came on, this frustrated the Russian commander who was busy lining up this Artillery for another salvo.

The Russians switched to plan B and stepped out rushing head long into the dense wood, catching a single session before they could properly form up.

It was a brutal fight, the Japanese threw in their remaining troops and whilst fewer in number the Japanese where able to inflict severer losses on the advancing Russians before they were pushed back their lines shattered. The larger Russian units were able to soak up more shock, but with few quality officers were unable to reduce the shock.

Meanwhile in the centre the Russian sailors and cavalry were finding it tough going. Machine Gun fire slowed their advance to a halt as they reached the paddy fields. The Cavalry were caught in the open as artillery smashed into their column.

The Japanese threw their reserves into the fight driving the back the Cossack cavalry and stragglers who had been forced out of the wood fight. The Russian attack was rapidly running out of steam and whilst the wood was clear of defenders force successes would be hard to acheive. 

As the Russians reorganised in the wood the the Japanese moved to their flank the Infantry and exploit a gap with Infantry and Cavalry threatening the Russian Guns or the heavily shocked attackers.

The counter attack petered out and the Japanese line held. 
Initiative to the Japanese as they pondered their next move and the push to clear the peninsula.

Japanese losses 30 points.

General Oku 200 Points 
General Kuroki 210 Points 
Admrial Uryu 22 Fleet Points
Admiral Nabu 24 Fleet Points

Saturday, August 06, 2022

V the Mini Series - Outer World Encounters #5

Not every encounter takes place on earth.

The Visitor reach stretches far beyond our solar system, the outer worlds are populated by various species, with various levels of technology. In an unnamed Jungle world a party of shock troopers landed with orders to secure the processing plant, but they were not alone, a private military company was also racing for the resources to make matters worse the planet was infected by a terrible disease which turned the locals into zombies. 

The compound was defended by mobile robotic defences programmed to attack on sight anyone crossing the fence.

Both Shock Troopers and the PMC's made use of the available cover and set about cleansing the locals.

While the PMC had their hands full Diana and here troopers rushed for the security gate and the hard cover it gave the defenders.

True to 'TV' form the Shock Troopers fired and missed which enraged the PMC who made short work of the remaining infected and turned their attention on the Visitors.

Smoke had covered Diana's advance but it also served to allow the PMC's to get in close. One private burst through the smoke killing one of the troopers who was engaged in a long range fire fight with the advancing PMC's only to be killed before he could make good his escape.

Within the compound surprisingly the engineers were able to destroy the sentrybot and as the battle raged at the gate they were able to disable jammers and call for reinforcements. 

Game Over.

Great fun and nice to get in a big game of Stargrave, the random locals made for a good mix forcing both players to think about each move as each round of fire brought more encounters onto the table.