07 July 2013

Modern Spearhead AAR

Ziggy and I played a game of MSH Saturday evening. I'd put the scenario together earlier in the day and made maps for us to mark up.

The premise: two Soviet battalions became cut off from their force and got pinned down by NATO airstrikes and attack helicopters. German and Dutch troops are closing in on the Soviets to finish them off. The Soviets are going to make a mad dash to get away before they are wiped out. A Motor Rifle regiment is inbound to help extract the unfortunate units.
Map of the area. The red circle is where the initial Soviet force starts. Blue edges are the edges where NATO forces arrive, the red edge is where Soviet reinforcements appear.
FRG Panzer Battalion - 10 Leopard 1A4, 1 Gepard, 1 Luchs Recon Platoon
FRG Panzergrenadier Battalion - 10 Marder 1A2, 1 Gepard, 1 Luchs Recon Platoon, 120mm Mortar
Dutch Mechanized Battalion - 10 YPR765, M113 + Mortar, M113 C&R
2 FRG M109 batteries with 6 fire missions (1 per fighting battalion)
2 FRG Bo105
1 FRG AGC in a scout helo

Soviet OOB
Starting force (in the red circle)
MR Battalion - 5 BMP-2, 120mm Mortar in truck
Tank Battalion - 6 T-72B, 1 ZSU23/4
Reserve force
MR Regiment with BTR-60PB and T-62E
4 2S1 Batteries
Regimental HQ
BRDM w/ SA-9 and ZSU23/4
2 BRDM w/ Spandrel
2 Recon Platoons (BRDM and BMPR)
1 AGC in Mi-8

Mid-1980s Europe. Soviet player must exit as many stands of the starting force off the east (red) table edge as possible. NATO player must destroy the starting force.

Special Rules:
1) The Soviet starting force is low on supplies and and has been harassed continually for hours by airstrikes and attack helicopters. After drawing up initial orders and deployment, roll for each Soviet stand. On a roll of 1-5 the stand is Suppressed. On a 6 it is in good order.
2) The Soviet covering force will show up eventually! Mark starting locations as usual for Reserve battalions. Starting on turn 3, roll a die for each of these battalions. On a 5 or 6 it arrives - you may draw a command arrow and move it in from the table edge.

Our starting dispositions:
My poor Soviets would be fast-tracking towards the left table edge.
Three stands in good order to start the game.
Ziggy opened by sending his huge battalions straight towards the wood where my bedraggled forces were hunkered down.

My "rally" rolls were not impressive. Three stands rallied at the end of the first turn. The T-72 battalion commander was not one of them.

The noose tightens. The Leopards were going to push the Soviets into the waiting mechanized troops.
I had won the initiative for turn 2 and Zig moved first. The few BMP stands I had that could move, did. T-72s pivoted to face the now visible German Marders.

Turn 3. I received the first of my reinforcement battalions - it was 3rd battalion and its only attachment was the AGC. At least I had some offensive punch incoming, but shit all for AA cover. The German's AGC also arrived on turn three.

After my move of turn three, Z had yet to move his guys. The tank BC woke up and the tanks that could move out began their escape. The BMPs also moved out as best they could.
My reinforcements. Yay, I have troops facing the proper direction now!
Camera change...

Germans line up some shots. The Dutch would take a few shots as well.
The first of the NATO airstrikes. He whiffed badly. Hahahahaha.
The Soviet response. He also whiffed. ** shakes fist at the sky **
Turn 4. My tanks and BMP continue their flight. The reserve battalion advances to a good position.

There is still a damned T-72 platoon in the woods that won't rally, slowing down the entire battalion. I left the ZSU23/4 still to provide some AA cover. The Dutch had killed off stragglers in the woods, freeing the rest of the BMP battalion from the same miserable fate the tanks were suffering.
The Frogfoot takes his second pass, cannons this time and takes out a Marder stand.
A German Phantom takes a run at the BMPs, kicking up much dust but causing no damage.
Sorry for all the gratuitous airplane pics - the two of us love using planes.

Where's Waldo? The T-72s finally got to their break point and wiped out. NATO was close to sealing the deal. I only had three stands left from the original force - 2 BMP2s and a Mortar Truck.
Turn 5

My BMP battalion was so close to the edge and escape. Z sent a Bo105 over to try for a kill. My reserves came up dry yet again.

Bring it on, Flyboy! The AGC missed his call-in. Heheh. The HOT missiles from the attack helo also missed badly.
Finally a result. A rocket-armed Su-7 takes out two Leopards. Ziggy was upset, but whatever. They were my second and third kills of the game.
Turn 6

I got the two BMPs off the board. The mortar truck was 1/4 inch sort of the edge. We'd play another turn.
Ziggy throws everything he's got at the mortar truck. Two Dutch mortars fire at it, the Bo105 fires and a Phantom swoops down on it. The result: SUPPRESSED. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA! I told him before the game that the dice he selected were cursed.
In other news, his Leopards and Marders make a nice showing at tear up the reserve battalion in the center. They are disposable, doesn't matter.

Turn 7
The goddamn mortar truck didn't rally so the Germans get one more try. Still no Russian reserves.

Hey WarPac players, look familiar? TI equipped tanks behind their wall of cowardice.
 Didn't get a picture, but a Dutch mortar got a second Suppressed result on my truck and ended the game. Ziggy got some further anger kills against my BTR battalion and ran them off.

Wrap Up
That was a fun game to say the least. It was a lot more entertaining than the standard "line-em-up and see who's left at the end." We agreed to give the NATO force a minor victory for wiping out a vast majority of his quarry. I did manage to get two stands off the map, so at least I didn't fail miserably. 

Ziggy's dice, as usual, were atrocious. Mine were good, but I had so few firing opportunities it didn't matter much. I think I killed five stands? The Su-7 air strike was a high point for sure.

My reserves rolls were a damn war crime - one success out of eleven attempts. I left a lot of hardware off the table.

Oh, the mix of aircraft, after a successful call-in, we'd roll to see what sort of aircraft arrived. Adds a little fun for no extra effort.

My orders map. nothing fancy - just get the hell out of Dodge!
Be well and Good Gaming!

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