29 July 2014

The Bridgehead AAR

Last Saturday we had the next playtest of our Cold War game, and a long and very useful discussion about rules mechanics, troop quality and technology.  And we had some fun too!  So on witht he show.

We played a variant of the Bridgehead Breakout in the BGK rulebook.  My version of it was that the main Soviet attack was taking place further to the North (or South) to gain a bridgehead.  Meanwhile a small Soviet Recon Patrol, with engineers attached, have put a mobile bridge across the river and crossed, leaving a small guard while the next unit comes up.  The crossing is near an autobahn, possession of which will greatly help the Soviet folow-on-forces.  West German forces have thrown together a response force to try and smash the bridgehead (and the bridge).

The Soviet end of the table looked like this:

You can see the MTU-55 bridging the small river in the foreground.  Here's a close-up:

The table looked like this from the West German table end:

The autobahn is in the foreground, with some smashed up traffic and a small service centre is in the middle of the table.

There were six objectives on the table.  The bridge (obviously), the intersection in the centre of the table and each of the four road exits on the table.

The Soviet force was like this:
Artillery Command Post - in a BRDM-2U (like an FO team)
A 4 tank T-72B1 platoon
A BMP-2 mounted motor-rifle platoon
A 3 gun 2S1 battery
A BTR-70 mounted combat engineer squad
A NBC Recon Patrol - BRDM-2Rkh
A standard BRDM-2
A ZSU-23-4

The West German force was like this:
A 3 tank (reduced) Leopard 1A4 troop
A single Leopard 2A4
A Marder mounted Panzergrenadier platoon
A 120mm Panzermorser
A FO team mounted in a Beobachtungspanzer with an off table 2 gun 155mm battery, with 1 DPICM barrage
A Spz-2 Luchs
A Gepard
An Alpha Jet timed air-strike

The Soviet recon troops defending the bridgehead deployed first:

Followed by the West German recon and a Leo 1A4

Having spent a few days preparing for the game and trying to progress the Alpha Jet and flying stand, I was a little disappointed when we rolled up some inclement weather, which meant no air strikes!  So the Alpha Jet made a very brief journey to and from the table - just for an over-exposed photo!

The West Germans were quickly into action, driving down the autobahn exit to engage the BRDM-2Rkh near the centre intersection.

Which they knocked out, but then suffered a set back and the Leo 1A4 rolled oved a FASCAM minelet.

Soviet reinforcements quickly began to arrive:


And drive further up the table

So did the West German reinforcments

The Soviets started to consolidate their position prior to engaging the West German main body

And after some aggressive manouvering they inflicted some significant damage on the West Germans

The Leo 1A4 platoon was sadly plagued by the fact that it was the most newly painted unit on the board and therefore died first and quite spectaularly!  The 1A4 in the foreground was killed by the RPG from the motor-rifle squad while a T-72 knocked out the 1A4 hiding in the woods.

In revenge a Marder drove forward and the panzergrenadiers spilled out, annihilating the motor-rifle squad behind the supermarket

On the other flank the Soviets continued to grind forward

And another panzergrenadier squad attempts to engage them

But they have misjudged and the BMP-2 is within the minimum targeting distance for the Milan, so it cannot fire.  Taking advantage of this and some poor shooting from the other Pzrgren fireteam, the motor-rifle squad wipe out the fireteam and the BMP-2 attempts to overrun the Milan team

Luckily the ATGM team dodge to one side and escape the BMP.

Back in the centre of the table the Leopard 2A4 successfully knocks ot the lead T-72B1, whilst it's own engine sputters out, stranding it on the rear table edge.  The second T-72B1 knocks out the Luchs, but in a desperate move is repeatedly engaged and pinned by the Gepard, hosing it down with its twin 35mm autocannons.

Things are not looking good for the West Germans.  Their one remaining tank is right down the back of the table unable to move and all 3 Leopard 1A4s have been knocked out.  They have one final Ace up their sleeve though.  The Soviets have fallen into NATO's cunning trap and have grouped their remain 3 T-72B1s near the centre of the table, within the line of sight of the still surviving FO.  He calls in his one DPICM strike on top of the T-72s with stunning results.

Sadly for NATO, it's not enough to stave off a Soviet victory, and the West Germans use the confusion of the DPICM strike to withdraw.

The end result was much closer than we had expected, partially due to the DPICM, but it was a good fun game - and most importantly - it pointed out a few things that will need to be changed.

That's all for now



27 July 2014

Scenes from the Cold War - Harrier Hide

I've been meaning to try and do this for years, after I wrote the Harrier Hunt mission for the Force on Force sourcebook - Cold War Gone Hot.  Right now the Guild is finishing a Terrain build so I thought this was a good excuse as any to finish off these things.  Obviously I need a lot more trees to make the table a bit more decent.

First few shots - trying to show all the hides/shelters as they might be on a table (just imagine a lot more trees!):

Now some close ups to get a better idea of how a sample one might look in context:


So that's it.  Another finished project.  Really?  Is any thing really ever finished?  Good questions... I'll go ponder that for a while.

The weekends AAR coming soon.

Thanks and take care


24 July 2014

For Tomorrow's Game

Another quick post - just a taster really...

Sorry for the crappy ipad photos - but you'll get the idea:

Will see what happens tomorrow!



21 July 2014

M113G Panzermorser W-I-P Part 3

Very short post today - just showing some progress:

As you can see the insides have been touched up, the NATO brown cam stripes have been added to the hull, I've also painted the hatch doors, and started work on the cam netting.  Should be finshed shortly, but won't be 100% finalised until I work out how to crew it.

Happy to take suggestions, as right now it's either using Elhiem British BAOR mortar crew with head swaps of maybe looking at some German WW2 120mm mortar crew with head swaps.  Apart from that I'm drawing a blank.



20 July 2014

M113G Panzermorser W-I-P Part 2

So things continue...

The Harrier hides are completed - I'm just waiting for the right day (read better weather) to take some photos.  In the meantime I did further work on the M113G Panzermorser over the weekend, along with a couple of other things which will shortly make an appearance.

Back to the Panzermorser.  The first thing to do was to add the cam netting - which would of course cover half the detail I added!  Oh well - I wasn't real happy with the smoke grenade dischargers anway - too skinny...

Once dried, I undercoated the M113 in black and then sprayed the outside NATO Green and the inside white:

Of course I forgot to spray the two main hatch doors...

I then started to do a bit of work on the inside, and painted the first NATO camo stripes on the outside in black:

This is how the whole thing looks right now:

Still a fair way to go - but progress is being made...

That's all for now


18 July 2014

M113G Panzermorser W-I-P

Today I ended up quite unexpectedly spending 1/2 the day at home.  So instead of actually finishing something like a normal person would - I started something new!

A few months back I picked up a couple of these quite cheaply:

And I had a cunning plan - to modify them into M113G Panzermorsers like these:

So after fiddling around for a few hours - this is what I came up with:

Still very much a W-I-P but I'm pretty happy with how it's looking thus far.

More soon