The game did not go through to a conclusion. I really like the rules but would make a few changes next time I try them out. I felt that the VC should have one level higher of cover than we used but this may be in the rules already. I might have missed this in the rules like a couple of other parts I did not know well enough. I would also allow points for the truck getting destroyed and would set a turn length at 10. I would also only count VC casualties when you have US troops on the ground. i.e. not those caused by Airpower or Artillery.
The scenario was a combination of two of the TFL's scenarios from the Surf's Up compilation.
Fried Rice to Go.
The Rice Farm of Grace Kwan (a local TV character) has reportedly been a hotbed of VC activity during the early part of 1965. It has been decided to evacuate the Farm, locate the caches of Rice located in the area and burn the buildings and anything useful to the VC that cannot be evacuated.
There may be some tunnels in the area that require locating and destroying. This area may be used for a Fire Base in the future as it is a defensible location with good road access.
The plan is that the Free World Forces will send in an advance team at dawn to organise the Workers and escort them away from the Farm. This Force will start on the table in the building compound.
The Search Party will advance across the ford and proceed to search the buildings and waste piles for Rice Caches. Anything located will be Air lifted out by the Helicopters on Standby. The buildings will then be set on fire. If any tunnels or VC can be located and also destroyed would be a bonus to the mission.
The force on the left flank will also be searching for any Rice Caches and if any VC caught will also be destroyed.
Forces to be used for the Search and Destroy Mission.
Bigman plus Kit Carson section and attached Sniper.
Farm Search Party
Air Cavalry Platoon 1 and attached Flame thrower, Tunnel Rat and truck.
Left Flank Force
Air Cavalry Platoon 2 plus HMG and Mortar Observer.
Suspected VC units
Two small platoons of Main Force VC with snipers, Mortars and HMG's.
The Farm Workers may have VC sympathies.
Rice Caches can be found by using any number of action dice on a 4+ while remaining stationary next to buildings or farm waste. A success means that the Roof or pile can be lifted to reveal if the VC player has hidden a marker there. (This can only be done by an Infantry Section). If a booby trap card is pulled from the deck immediately after a Cache is discovered then 1D6 hits on section.
Tunnels that are located in the mound area can only be located by a Tunnel Rat. He will remain stationary next to a terrain feature and use his dice to test on a 4+. If a booby trap card is pulled from the deck immediately after it is successfully found then the Tunnel Rat suffers 1D6 hits. The VC player will note where the Tunnel entrance is hidden.
1 Enemy Casualty 2
1 MIA (prisoner) 2
5 Rice Cache 1
0 Helicopter downed 10
-5 Civilian casualty 0
5 Civilians relocated -1
10 Tunnel located -10
10 Buildings burnt-down -2
-20 Broken Arrow +5
Day 1 started off well enough with the advance party of the Kit Carson Scouts entering the village. (I was the US player) The 1st Platoon moved slowly to secure their line of retreat but did encounter some resistance from a sniper and a section of VC. On the left hand flank things seem to start well. When two sections of VC along with two LMG's appeared from the rice fields they did serious damage to one section forcing it to retreat, while another section was destroyed. Now as the third section had failed to appear on the table, the Platoon Commander had no other option to withdraw to the start line.
Things looked so bad that I went through the card deck twice to make sure that I had put the correct amount of US cards in, but found everything was as it should be and put it down to the timing of the cards with a timeout card controlling turn length.
Day 2. I had finally started to make some progress into the village and got the Civilians on the move to the river, although I had lost my truck to an RPG. I had also done some damage to the VC on the left flank with my Airpower. At this point I felt that I could start to make some impact on gathering some points as the VC were leading 28 points to my 13. However my opponent decided that as it seemed unlikely that he could stop the Green Machine we should stop the game.
I can only assume what would have happened if we continued. When packing up the terrain later on I found where the rice caches and tunnel were hidden. I think that it was unlikely that I would have found the tunnel placed where it was and would have only found one Rice cache. I may have gotten my Flame thrower on in time to burn down some of the buildings so it could have very easily been a draw.
Before packing up the game I went to the table next door and had a game of Skirmish Outbreak with Colin Philips, and my usual Demo gaming buddies Raymond and his son Michael. I had a lot of fun with the game and will admit that although I struggle with the Sanguine rules (unless somebody else drives the game) I found this easy to play. I won with the loss of one of my teams characters out of three.
Best news of all was that I sold three Flames of War Armies plus some other bits and pieces and made nearly NZ$700. I only spent NZ$4 on a couple of Grenadier Wizards and NZ$25 on two Corgi Kubelwagons.