Monday, March 21, 2016

Heavy Metal in Kalasia

Earlier this year I had a small moderns game, using CD3, as an experiment to see if I could run a game of CD on a very small playing surface, and still have it be enjoyable.

Kalasia 2003:
Hard line elements of the old regime, supported by the remnants of the Presidential Guard, have retreated into the jungles of  the interior. They are closely pursed by the Western Alliance backed Kalasian Peoples' Army (KPA), who hope to end the civil war by destroying the old regimes remaining military power, and to bring surviving elements of  the regimes' politburo to justice.

The role of  Task Force Copper is to neutralise an enemy SAM site, secure the township of Beinaz, and continue the advance towards the interior. Enemy forces are believed to consist of no more than a badly mauled company of motorized infantry, supported by local militia. The SAM site is not believed to be currently operational.

Currently air superiority in this sector is  fiercely contested, so there is a strong possibility of  the appearance of enemy aircraft

The civilian occupants of Beinaz township have already abandoned the town, no doubt encouraged to do so by regime forces.

The game set a small KPA task force (Task Force Copper), with an attached troop of Western Alliance combat engineers, against elements of the Kalasian Presidential Guard, supported by loyalist elements of the Kalasian military.

The town, the SAM site, and the turn zero smoke screen....
TASK FORCE COPPER 

Troop Quality: KPA elements Experienced, Western Alliance elements Veteran
Morale: 10

 Headquarters Company with:
        1x Command stand
        1x FO/FAC stand
        1x BTR-80
Motorised Rifle Company with:
        1x Command Rifle Stand
        2x Rifle Stands
        3x BTR-80s
Tank Troop with:
        1x T-72
SPAAG Troop with:
        1x 2K22 Tunguska
Engineer Troop with:
        1x Engineer Stand
        1x M113

KPA and Western Alliance forces start the advance towards the township.
The KPA forces had a simple plan, use smoke to screen their advance, while moving towards the main objective, securing the township and then continuing the advance down the road. It was a beautiful plan.

Loyalist forces prepare for the attack.
Using smoke at the beginning of a game was something I hadn't seen for some time. Hopefully it would pay dividends for the KPA forces. The loyalist forces decided to take a wait and see attitude to events.

KPA forces advance towards the SAM site.
However, the smoke screen had to end eventually.  This would leave the Presidential Guard and loyalist forces with clear fields of fire from their positions.

KPA forces cautiously advance through the township, and through the light jungle scrub.

The SAM site is captured!
The township and the SAM site fell after light resistance from loyalist forces.

Close up of the KPA infantry and Western Alliance Engineers.
The SAM was made from a modified Atlantic kit.

The defending troops fell back further into the township.
At this tsge the loyalist forces were taking a wait and see attitude, as I was wanting to see where the KPA was going to fully commit itself, as I had only limited forces at my disposal.

LOYALIST FORCES 

Troop Quality: Experienced
Morale: 10

 Headquarters Company with:
        1x Command stand
Motorised Rifle Company with:
        1x Command Rifle Stand
        2x Rifle Stands
SAM Battery with:
        1x Broadsword SAM
        1x SAM crew stand
Tank Troop with:
        1x T-72

Air Support consisting of 1x MiG 21

These fairly limited forces meant that my plan was going to be wait and see what the KPA were doing, and shape my main (really only!) effort to counterv it. My plan would be to engage the KPA armour with integral AT missiles and the tank troop a, and then mop up with an armoured thrust into the township - supported by the MiG 21. 

Loyalist forces patiently wait for their opportunity to engage with AT missiles and small arms fire.
The KPA also viewed destruction of enemy armour as being a priority. Fortunately for the loyalists, they fired first.

KPA T-72 got Greedoed!


The destruction of the KPA T-72 troop resulted in the KPA trying to avoid that flank like the plague. The Motor Rifle company started to swarm into the township in order to take up defensive positions.

KPA BTR-80s on the move.
The KPA SPAAG troop quickly dealt to the loyalist MiG 21 when it made an appearance.


Scarily efficient against aircraft.


Boom goes the MiG!

While the skies were being swept clean, the loyalists launched an armoured attack into the township, which made short word of any BTR-80s encountered.


The predictable result of a T-72 getting a flank shot on a BTR-80.
KPA troops attempted to attack the T-72 from the township, but it didn't go well.


Brave, but unsuccessful.

The loyalists would draw back their tank troop and use it to destroy the KPA SPAAG troop, and to destroy other targets of opportunity. As the morale of the KPA broke surviving elements fled the scene, leaving the field to the loyalists.

Not as useful against armour.
The dice were very fortunate for the loyalists in this game, and the game could of gone either way. It was an enjoyable fight that made use of a very small playing space that allowed the movement rates of equipment in CD3 to present challenges to both sides in terms of "Oh crap, they can be there this turn!"

Playing on a smaller surface again, I would like to do something more urban that would allow for a more Stalingrad feeling game.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

More Prussians and French for Volley and Bayonet

 After the last game of Volley and Bayonet I discovered that I needed to base up more French and Prussians. Fortunately I could fast track the Process by making use of some oddments from Steve, and a number of old school Airfix paint conversions from Glenn.

Prussians. Three Infantry Brigades, and three Artillery Battalions.
Two of the Prussian Infantry Brigades have been made up from Airfix French Infantry (click here for PSR review) that were painted to look like Prussians. The other one was made up of figures from the rather nice Revell Prussian Infantry set (click here for the PSR review).

Airfix Prussian Infantry.
Admittedly the paint conversion does get some things wrong, particularly with regard to backpacks, belts,and other such items - but I think it does capture the general impression of Prussian troops of the period. Refurbishment was the usual quick touch up, followed by basing and a brown wash.


Prussian Artillery. Airfix guns and Hat crew.
The Prussian artillery were made up of guns from the Airfix French Waterloo Artillery set (click here for the PSR review), and gun crew from the Hat Prussian Artillery set (click here for the PSR review). When Steve based up his Prussian artillery, he had some spare gun crew, so I added the French guns to them in order to quickly add to my Prussian artillery park.

The French, Teeth and Tail elements.
 First up are some nicely painted Airfix Waterloo French Imperial Guard that I got from Glenn. (click here for the PSR review). Since they are shorter than many modern figures, I put them on a taller base.

Airfix French Imperial Guard.
 Next up is a vehicle I built years ago using matchsticks, wheels, horses, and a figure from the Airfix French Artillery set. The barrel comes from an unknown plastic kit. The design is pure fantasy, but I think it looks good!

French wine wagon with nearby Imperial Guard nursing their hangovers.
The final two additions are a battalion of French horse artillery from Italeri (click here for the PSR review), and a French command stand. The figure seems to be painted to represent Napoleon himself (the grey coat, added to the fact the figure was in the same batch as the Imperial Guard above, are fairly big clues to the intended identity).

Napoleon and Artillery. A natural combination.
The mounted figure is of course from the classic Airfix Washington's Army set (click here for the PSR review), and the figure is generally viewed as representing George Washington. Clearly, the original painter decided to go a different route! As Napoleon, the paint conversion is quite serviceable,but in my view  the pose is a little too martial. I plan to replace it with the figure from the Italeri French Imperial General Staff (click here for the PSR review), which I think is a better fit for a command stand in V&B.

Sunday, March 6, 2016

Additions to Volley and Bayonet Terrain

Since my last post I've made a few additions to my V&B collection. Some of this has been fast tracked by the refurbishment of some odds and ends from Steve, the refurbishment of painted Airfix figures from Glenn, and the adaption of some buildings Ken gave me into V&B Built Up Areas (BUAs). This post will deal with the terrain, while the next will deal with the figures.

The Mill (a single BUA) and the Estate (a double BUA).
 The kits used were a HO scale Water Mill kit (Manufacturer unknown), parts from the Airfix Waterloo farm house, and houses from the Nitto house and lookout kit.

Like the rest of the V&B BUAs I've made part of them removable in order to house stands of troops.
I've acquired another second hand Waterloo farm house kit from Glenn, that I am hoping to convert into generic housing BUAs. At some stage I will need to think about how I can make villages in V&B as they have a template size of 3" by 2" (or roughly 76mm by 47mm), and need to  have space for a 1.5"  (or 38mm) square base of troops to occupy it.

The Mill has a removable waterwheel.
 The trick will be to make something that is functional, but also looks ok. Especially that this might be the correct template to represent key locations of terrain on many Napoleonic battlefields.

Like so.
 The Mill can be placed next to a river or stream and have its wheel deployed, or be used as a generic BUA without it.By having the wheel as a separate piece, I can increase the utility of the BUA, and make it easier to store.

Which can be safely stored away.
 I still have to finish off all the BUAs used in the last game, so hopefully once I've completed those I can start working on the smaller village BUAs.