Sunday, 31 August 2014

The Kray brothers and the Golden Holden

Lieutenant Ronnie Kray peered through his binoculars, and swore. "Them f@#&ing Hotakis looks like they's gunner make a stand." At his side, his twin brother and CO, Major Reggie Kray, spat into the sand; "There's an SAS lieutenant and a bl%*ing big tank behind us. We'll get them to kick the b@stards up the jacksie, and while the glory boys are winnin' the medals, we'll get the gold. Get Mad Frankie and the boys up 'ere, ready for when the road is clear. We'll send the SAS round the right flank, and get the tank to clear the compound in front of us."

A WMIK burns...

The surviving WMIK (and a Snatch) take cover
A simple plan, but no plan survives contact with the enemy intact. Things rapidly went 'pear-shaped' - the SAS WMIK's shot up Hotaki positions on the hill, causing some casualties, and a number to run away. In return, however, they were targetted by numerous RPG's as they crossed the open ground. Despite popping smoke, and hugging the undulations, two WMIK's were hit and exploded. The third took cover behind the compound wall, and chose discretion - particularly when a Shilka was spotted lurking in the village.

Hotaki paratroopers destroy the Abrams
 The Abrams and its supporting infantry bulldozed their way into the compound, and quickly took care of opposition; some Hotakis attempted to run, but were shot down. Flushed with success, the tank eased its way past the building, only to be shot in flank by an RPG from an Hotaki paratrooper team, which had advanced to the wall at the edge of the compound. To the surprise of all, the Abrams exploded catastrophically !
At this point, the UN attack faltered, and the Hotaki Major sensed an opportunity to run off with the loot. Throwing a BMP forward to give covering fire, he used his technicals to screen the Golden Holden as he and his men escaped.

The Golden Holden escapes, screened by technicals and a BMP

Observations -
First up, even if you have good troops, light vehicles in open terrain are still soft targets, and burn well. Aggressive action is good, but you also need to use cover to get into position, and preferably set up overwatch.
Secondly, this was probably the most explosive game ever - almost every single vehicle hit exploded catastrophically... The Abrams being a case in point - the RPG was a thermobaric warhead and rolled three hits, but the tank's owner rolled five fails (on D12); the effect was a 12 on a D12...
Thirdly, although not mentioned above, there was a T-55 hidden on the hill, trying not to be seen by the Abrams... So, when the latter exploded, the commander felt brave enough to emerge and threaten the UN forces. It should have realised that no T-55 has ever survived one of our games, and this one was true to form; one of the Kray's men shot it with an RPG, and it exploded spectacularly.
Fourthly , it had been a while since the last game, so I had to keep looking up rules, which slowed everything down. I usually used Kevin as the 'font of all knowledge' (well, him and his well-marked rulebook), but he was a couple of thousand kms away...
Lastly, several mistooks were made by me, the key one of which changed the scenario - I started Hotaki force 2 on table, with the Golden Holden in the village on the road. This made it a lot easier for them to make it off table in time.

1 comment:

  1. Nice. Makes me curse my 1000's of kilometres. I learnt the WMIK bonfire technique playing Combat Mission, I think I lost 9 WMIKS rapidly in one mission. WMIKS <> TANK :)