Lately, I have started a new adventure, modern wargaming. I have collected some 1/72 US soldiers and insurgent models, built a few middle eastern houses and played my first test games. (Models are from Ceasar Miniatures: US Soldiers, Ceasar Miniatures: Asian Militia and Orion Miniatures: Chechen Rebels) I used Force on Force as ruleset, it's quite fun but a little complex with it's action-reaction mechanic at first glance. But I heard many good comments about the rules. My first impression is good but I still have some questions in my mind. Anyways, here are the photos and stories of my games;
Somewhere in Iraq, during the US occupation period after the overthrow of Saddam Hussein...
The first game is about a 3 fireteam US Marine Squad's mission to capture a target area, the place where two small buildings stand at the left-bottom corner of first picture. There are insurgents nearby and they'll try to stop the Americans. Two insurgent units are in Ambush. There are 13 US soldiers as 3 units against 23 insurgents as 5 units.
In game terms;
D6 Quality: poorly trained troops
D8 Quality: regular soldiers, trained militia
D10 Quality: elite units, veterans
D12 Quality: experts, spec-ops units
D6 Morale: poor morale, reluctant troops
D8 Morale: standard morale, confident troops
D10 Morale: high morale, regular units
D12 Morale: unshaken morale, fanatics
Game 1: Secure Target Area
First game, I used the US models as Marines and gave them values of Troop Quality and Morale: D10/D10. Iraq insurgents were divided in two groups: Fighters with D8/D10 and Jihadists D6/D12. I did not play the insurgents as irregulars.
Table set up for first game, US soldiers start on right side and their objective is to secure the area at the left-bottom corner where there are two small buildings. (Actually I changed the table on the picture very slightly and re-positioned some units.)
An insurgent ambush is sprung, one US Marine shot.
Fireteam Delta moves behind the building and takes position to attack the target area.
Fireteams Alpha and Bravo engage many insurgents on the main road.
Delta exchanges shots with insurgents near target area.
Alpha goes on top of a building to have better field of fire. The fallen man from Bravo is found to be totally OK after a quick first aid check. Each turn, more insurgents go down.
Alpha gives fire support from the roof while Delta prepares to move towards the target.
Bravo continues the firefight and take off the enemy.
Alpha and Delta finish off the enemy on target area. Delta is ready to secure the position.
Alpha then supports the Bravo team. All enemies on the main road are also down.
Delta secures target area. One man down from one of the last insurgent shots of game.
End of Turn 6, all enemies down, Marines control the area. Major US victory.
In the end, the game was really dominated by the Marine troop quality of D10. Perhaps for such conditions, US Army soldiers with D8 should be used instead of Marines. The major victory condition of "capture target" was clearly unsuitable. It should be to "move all the US units at target area and keep them in at least 50% strength". This way, scenario may force the US soldiers to move instead of stay in cover and fire.
Game 2: Rescue Surrounded Troops
Allright, onto the next game then. Here, I designed a different table with a very different scenario. There is a 3 man US fireteam near the tower-minaret at the right-bottom corner who are surrounded by insurgents. Two 5 man fireteams on the opposite corner are ordered to reach their destination and relieve them. In this game, I used US Army units with quality/morale value of D8/D10. Insurgent statlines were the same.
Right-bottom corner: Surrounded US soldiers. Top-left corner: Rescue team.
Surrounded US troops, waiting for relief force to reach them.
Fireteams Ranger and Tango, ready to rush for their comrades.
Fireteam Ranger engages successfully the insurgents nearby at first turns, taking down one unit and crippling another.
Fireteam Tango goes for the nearest street, shooting and clearing it's way.
Insurgents close in on the surrounded troops, two man down with Serious Wounds. If relief force is not fast enough, it'll be big trouble for US side.
Tango fights at the street, insurgents trying to stop their advance.
Ranger delayed by a random Fog of War card. They think they're thirsty after a long march and can't move until some refreshment.
Tango on the other hand successfully continues to advance and take down enemy units.
Insurgent fighters shoot down the last member of surrounded US troops. Now it's all a matter of dice to see if they can run and reach them, thus winning the game.
But no, Tango acts first and stops the insurgents trying to reach the fallen soldiers.
Ranger is once more in the action but they need to take down the enemy in order to move.
On last turn, Tango is up for the task again. Under enemy fire, they reach their fallen brothers and perform a first aid check to the last man down. He is also found to be Seriously Wounded.
Ranger moves at last, but it's not very important for the game.
Tango, reporting to HQ that they have reached the wounded soldiers.
Ranger is delayed but thanks to Tango it's no big problem.
End of game, all 3 surrounded soldiers are reached but they are all seriously wounded. A close and minor victory for US side, for no other casualty was given and there are many fallen insurgents.
This game was definitely more entertaining. The reduction of US troop value did great impact on game, making it much difficult for Americans to deal with even Jihadist fanatics. To make things worse, I could have spawned the destroyed insurgent units from some hotspots but even this way, it was not very easy and US side did very good on rolls.
Still, there are things I do not understand, or find logical with the action-reaction mechanic. The rulebook does a very bad job at this, there are not enough examples about complex situations. Still, a good game overall and once I get the mechanics, it'll be more fun.
Now, I'll paint some snipers for both sides, more troops and build more terrain. Then, I'm thinking of buying some vehicles, for start a Humvee for US side and a tactical for insurgents.
Take care until next time...