FNG OPS Campaign – 9th Sept

9th Sept

Captain Warren Barnes sat back in his chair. Another evening of writing reports and letters back to families bereaved of their sons, fathers, brothers. What was there to show for it? All in all it was meant to be a quiet day, most of the company recouping from their efforts over the past week. Only the men of the battery toiled under the cloudy but dry sky, continuing to dig in their guns and create the basic artillery positions that would allow them to fire in support of the grunts in the field. Only two patrols went out, Barnes concerned that in the recent operations further afield, the perimeter had been neglected and close security was lacking.

The first patrol, the five men from 2nd Squad, 1st Plt called back into the firebase that all was well mid morning. But shortly after the firebase stirred as the sound of a flurry of shots rang out.

Table set up

The eight men of 3rd Squad, 1st Plt were on their way back to the firebase their morning patrol having been uneventful. Perhaps attention levels were slipping, perhaps fatigue was setting in, whatever the reason when the patrol entered into an area of paddy fields they failed to notice the three NVA sappers who lurked in the scrub some distance away. The Vietnamese however were fully aware of the approaching patrol and in a well timed ambush their fusilade of shots dropped three GI’s. A fourth attempted to react by firing back but all he succeeded in drawing more return fire which again hit home. The rest of the squad reacted by diving for cover.

Results of the ambush
View across the paddy to the ambush position

Another three sappers heard the firing, and began moving to take up their own ambush positions. It would take them some time to do, but once there they were in perfect position to enfilade any movement of the US troops towards their initial ambushers position.

An early activation allowed the US troops still capable of moving to check their casualties, turning over the chits revealed 2 wounded and two dead outright. The closest crawled over to perform some first aid while the M60 team crawled up the paddy dyke to try to get some payback. The movement drew fire from the Vietnamese but the shots sailed high, giving away the enemy positions. A sustained burst silenced the incoming fire but who knew if the shots had found their marks? The experience of the squad leader showed as he stabilised the man he was working on, stopping the bleeding and saving his life.

Results of the ambush (chits revealed)

A series of turns saw no American activation as the wounded dice ticked down while the vietnamese continued to move around and fire with no effect at the M60 team, drawing repeated bursts in return.

And then the squad leader remembered the radio. At the same time as he was trying to get through, the men of 2nd Squad appeared close by. Having heard the firing they had moved to support their comrades. Bringing their own radio they were able to call in a mortar strike on the area where the Vietnamese were lurking. The wounded GI is finally patched up, perilously close to bleeding out.

Reinforcements arrive
NVA move into a new ambush position

Standing up to see if they could assess the effectiveness of the mortar strike, the survivors of 3rd squad trigger the ambush from the second NVA team. Hit 3 times, the squad leader is miraculously merely knocked down while the blooper man ignores the hail of bullets sent in his direction and sends a 40mm into the trees, the NVA are untouched but unnerved by the heavier weapon and decide to break contact especially as they can see the reinforcements starting to move out. The arrival of mortar rounds close to the initial ambushers convinces them to move out too.

Mortar rounds land

After a cursory search for enemy bodies, the disconsolate Americans carry their dead and wounded home and wonder what they have to do to kill their opponents.

(Game fought with 28mm TAG figures, homemade terrain using plastic aquarium plants and Palm trees, Last Valley trees and a mix of FNG v1 , FNG:2nd Tour and my own house rules & amendments).

Test game of I Ain’t Been Shot Mum

I’ve been intrigued by I Ain’t Been Shot Mum (IABSM) for a while now. The rules from Too Fat Lardies have clearly got a large online following and are now in their third version, priced at £12 for a PDF the rules were certainly worth a punt.

Last night Matt and I tried out one of the scenario’s from the rulebook, “North of Caen” which pits a Company of British Infantry against a couple of platoons of Germans dug in around a cluster of buildings. I won’t try to do a review of the rules or an explanation of the mechanics as there are already good ones out there. What I will say is that we were both very pleased with our experience and although we had a raft of questions resulting from our game and of course I spent a large amount of time with my head in the rulebook searching for x,y or z so we didn’t finish the scenario, I think we were both pretty impressed and are looking forward to the next game.

I took only a few pictures as the light was pants due to the whopping big Lightning storm we had half an hour before which lingered around for the evening. Small dice recorded casualties and Irregular Miniatures 6mm explosions are used to count Shock points. All miniatures are 10mm Pendraken painted by me, terrain is a mix of resin buildings and hedges from Timecast, doormat and teddy bear fur fields and trees made by myself and bought from The Last Valley.

An overview of the table at the start of the game

2nd Platoon advances straight into the face of a MG42 and rifle gruppe.

A section from 2nd Plt gets mullered by the MG42.

Further shock compels the section to fall straight back, inflicting 5 shock on a section behind.

Looking slightly Napoleonic, 1st Plt take positions in an orchard facing more Germans (Behind the building from the camera)

More AWI

My life over the past few weeks seems to have been solely dedicated to these chaps. I’m fairly happy with them, my painting seems to match in with Andy Mac’s reasonably well, although he clearly uses a different flesh palette than I do, the styles are similar generally. He’ll put more shading on things like straps though which I’ve resisted in an effort to get these finished in time for the Pendraken Birthday Bash. “Goat Major” and I have volunteered to put a game on between us, opting for Freeman’s Farm straight out of the Black Powder rulebook. I’ve just spent almost all weekend working on the basing, I’d forgotten just how big a job basing masses of troops can be.

Anyway, here’s the images (Painter in Brackets to avoid confusion!). All figures are Pendraken, bases are by Precision Wargame Supplies and tufts are Silflor. Click on the images to make them bigger.

Militia (Andy Mac)

Militia (Andy Mac)

British Infantry (Andy Mac)

Morgan's Rifles (Me)

Continentals (Me)

British Artillery (Me)

Hessian Jaegers (Me)

British Generals (Me)

Overall of the forces so far