Monday, June 19, 2017

Operation Rush Delivery, Fight #6


AKA, the 15th fight of Operation Payback

It's 0705 on 20 July 1990, and the invasion of Avalor, a small Caribbean island-nation near Cuba, upon which Castro-regime holdovers have been organizing, training, and launching attacks on the homeland, is underway.  Previously three Reconnaissance and Surveillance teams from 10th Special Forces Group were inserted to support the invasion; one is in position in OP India, but the second team was compromised and extracted, and the third team (Rebel 33) was ambushed and wiped out.  Next, 1st Lieutenant Huerta's 18th Grenadier Guards of the 6th Parachute Battalion jumped from C-130s onto three separate Drop Zones (DZs) in the pre-dawn darkness, planning to immediately form up and march on their objectives, the terrorist training areas and barracks on Avalor, manned by terrorist trainees and their Venezuelan and Iranian trainers.

In the last three fights we saw Lt Jaramiho's 1st Platoon successfully seize DZ Crow, Lt Escobedo killed in action while 2nd Platoon was trying, unsuccessfully, to secure DZ Bluebird, and then Lt Reyna's 3rd Platoon successfully seize DZ Albatross.  The Company Commander, Lt Huerta, rounded up his paratroopers, formed them up, then linked up with Lt Estevez's ODA 525 for the assault on the objective areas.  This fight sees Lt Huerta leading Lt Jaramiho's 1st Platoon and three Special Forces teams from ODA 525 to secure the terrorist training areas on Avalor.

Overview, north is up.  The training areas are spread across the center, with some admin buildings in the southwest and north, and Hill 48 at top left.  There is a deep, swift running river running northwest to southeast, bridged at top right and just off camera to lower right.  The Cuban forces will enter at bottom right (Paratroopers) and top right (Special Forces), while the enemy will be spread across the board.  Ultimately, the Cuban objective is to take and hold Hill 48.  The board is 4' x 4' and I'm playing in 15mm using Ivan's "5Core Company Command," using the traditional "Five Men in Normandy"-style activation.

The opposing forces, with bad guys on the left and good guys on the right.  The good guys are Battlefront 15mm Vietnam-era US troops, Rebel Minis SWAT troops, and a Flashpoint Minis 60mm mortar, while the bad guys are Eureka Russians and Chechens with Peter Pig vehicles and Flashpoint Minis command team.

The good guys are as follows:
Overall Commander, Lt Huerta (three man team at bottom center): Samurai 6
Four Rifle teams from 1st Platoon (top center):
Samurai 11 (Lt Jaramiho, the platoon commander, is with this team)
Samurai 12
Samurai 13
Samurai 14

There is a 60mm mortar team and a 90mm recoiless rifle team attached (top left)

There are three Special Forces teams (bottom center):
Mako 23
Mako 24
Mako 25

The bad guys have:
-one command team (three-man team at top left)
-four rifle teams comprised of trainees (top center)
-two rifle teams comprised of Venezuelan Army troops (bottom right)
-two machine-gun armed Technicals (left)
-two Dshk heavy machine-gun (HMG) teams manned with trainees (center)
-one Automatic Grenade Launcher (AGL) team manned by Venezuelan Army troops (bottom center)

This is gonna be tough sledding; the bad guys are numerous, heavily armed, and prepared.

Overview, this time with troops.  You can see Cubans at bottom right (Paratroopers) and top right (Special Forces), with bad guys spread across the map.  They have three concentrations:

1.  The admin buildings at bottom center left, which we'll term Objective Mustang.
2.  Hill 48 at top left.
3.  The admin buildings at top center, near the bridge, which we'll term Objective Corvette.

The Cuban Paratroopers, looking east to west at the bottom right corner of the table.  Lotta troops in a little space, with lots of open ground to their right.  The Cubans are arrayed, from top left: Samurai 11, 12, 13, the CO (Samurai 6) at center, with the recoiless rifle team jut to his right, Samurai 14 just behind and to his left, and the mortar team at bottom left.

The Cuban Special Forces teams, looking north to south at the top right corner of the board.  We've got Mako 23, 24, and 25 from top to bottom, and man did I really screw these guys!  They get to try and cross a bridge, under fire, with bad guys immediately on the other side (Objective Corvette, off camera to top right), with no heavy weapons.

I rolled up to see how air support would be, penalizing myself for the failure of only having one Recon team in place (the second was compromised and extracted, the third wiped out).  It's possible, but not probable...

Looking at the table from west to east, with Cubans at top left and top right.  Objective Mustang is at right, Hill 48 at bottom left, and Objective Corvette at center left.  Here I think you can get a good look at the enemy defenses, which pretty much form a contiguous line from north to west to south, with way too much open ground between them and the Cubans.

Looking west to east at Objective Corvette, you can see three enemy rifle teams facing off against the three Cuban SF teams (just visible at top left).  There is a bad guy trainee rifle team at bottom left and in the building at center, and a Venezuelan team in the building at right.  There is also a Technical at bottom right with a 7.62mm machine gun.

Looking west to east at Objective Mustang, the Cubans at top right.  The bad guys have their commander in the building at bottom left, the other Venezuelan rifle team at bottom left, and an HMG team in the building at far right (too far out, honestly, but that happens sometimes when you use blinds).

Backing out on Objective Mustang a bit you get to see two more trainee rifle teams (bottom left and top left, with the bad guy CO in the building at right top and the Venezuelan team just to his left).

And then the piece de resistance, Hill 48.  Upon Hill 48 sits a Technical with a 12.7mm HMG (far left), an HMG team (center), and the AGL team (bottom right).  At top center you can see the MG Technical on Objective Corvette's right flank, and to its right you can see a rifle team on Objective Mustang's left flank.  This is gonna be a tough nut to crack...

Nevertheless, it is time to do or die for the Cubans.  Let Turn 1 begin!

In the southeast, all Samurai callsigns (a fancy way of saying all the Cuban Paratrooper units) scurry forward, moving closer to Objective Mustang (just visible at top left, though you can see the isolated enemy HMG team in the building at far left).

While in the northeast, Mako 23 moves up to the treeline (top left), while Mako 24 and 25 moves up to the building on the north side of the river (top right).

The Cubans continue to press forward...

But then all hell breaks loose!  As Samurai 11 creeps forward (bottom right), the isolated enemy HMG team in the south (bottom left) spots Samurai 13 (top center) creeping through the woods and opens fire.  The Cuban rifle team is temporarily out of the fight as they deal with casualties; Samurai 14 (just visible at top right) returns fire, but the heavy stone building protects the bad guys.

As the enemy isolated HMG (building at top right) is hammering away at Samurai 13 (in trees at top center), the Venezuelan AGL (on Hill 48, bottom center) starts popping grenades at Samurai 14 (at intersection of field and road at top right).  Happily, the grenades are long and Samurai 14 returns fire, but the enemy has made good use of the surrounding jungle and the scattered rounds have no effect.

But then the enemy HMG on Hill 48 (bottom center) opens fire on Samurai 13 (in trees at top center right, with Samurai 11 on the right end of that same clump of trees), and it's not good news.  12.7mm rounds skip in, ricocheting off the trees and ground, suppressing Samurai 13.

Back in the southeast, Lt Jaramiho and Samurai 11 (bottom center) open up on the HMG (top left) pounding Samurai 13.  Surprised by capitalist pig-dog paratroopers being so close and on their flank, the bad guys become pinned.

Having pinned the enemy, Lt Jaramiho screams "Charge!!!" and leads Samurai 11 forward to eliminate the enemy HMG position (bottom right).  But the Venezuelan rifle team on Objective Corvette (top left) spots the sprinting Cubans and opens fire!

But the Cubans' hearts are stout and they are able to close the distance, coming to grips with the bad guys.

Lt Jaramiho and his boys easily dispatch the enemy machine gunners (bottom right), then sprint west (bottom left), trying to flank Objective Mustang (top left).  Lt Jaramiho then calls the mortar team, pointing out the enemy Technical at top center.

The Cuban mortar team (bottom center) drops a few quick rounds...

But they're long and cause exactly zero problems for the bad guy rifle team and MG Technical.  The MG Technical returns fire...

Which pins the Cuban mortar team (yellow bead at top left).  Samurai 6 (the commander) moves over to Samurai 12 to rally them (red bead at top right).  You can see Samurai 13 at bottom left, and the recoiless rifle at bottom right.  Samurai 13 is 'men down' off camera to right.

Despite Samurai 6's (bottom center) admonishment, Samurai 12's NCO is panicked and so he and his men fall back, still suppressed (top center).

Looking to make something happen, the Corporal in charge of the recoiless rifle orders his team foreward (bottom center), to help out Samurai 13 (white bead just above them) and get in the fight.  But as they move up they draw small arms fire from a bad guy rifle team (top left, the one totally missed by the mortar team).

The recoiless rifle team braves the enemy fire and gets to work: the Corporal tries to rally Samurai 13, but they're still caught up in dealing with their casualties.  "Dammit! Put a round into that damn Technical (top left)!"

The gunner screams "on the way!" and a 90mm round starts in that direction...

This round misses too, but it's close enough to suppress the nearby rifle team (bottom right), and force the MG Technical to fall back, suppressed (behind building at top center).

His eye caught by the explosion that forced his compadre to fall back (MG Technical behind Obj Corvette building at left), the HMG Technical (on Hill 48, at bottom left) sights in on the Cuban recoiless rifle team (top right) and cuts loose with its 12.7mm HMG...

Again the recoiless rifle team (bottom right) is unfazed!  They calmly reload, sight in, and launch a 90mm round at their antagonist (top left, in the trees).

Ka-pu-yah!!!  The enemy HMG team atop Hill 48 (bottom center) looks on as the HMG Technical is turned into a flaming pile of rubbish!

In the northeast, the three Cuban SF teams creep forward, trying to take advantage of the bad guys' attention being drawn to the southeast (Mako 23 is at top center left, Mako 24 is on the road at center, and Mako 25 has taken up position in the building).

Of course the bad guys nearest the bridge (bottom left) spot Mako 23 (top right) and open fire, pinning the SF team.

Further south on Hill 48 (the burning HMG Technical is just off camera to left), the Venezuelan AGL team (bottom center) readjusts their sights and launch several grenades at the recoiless rifle team (top center right).

The bad guys (top left) miss again!  You know the drill: the Corporal orders his team (bottom right, with Samurai 13 still 'men down') to reload and return fire.

The Venezuelan AGL team (bottom center) takes the 90mm in close, causing casualties and placing them 'men down.'  The HMG atop Hill 48 (to their 10 o'clock) sights in and becomes the third crew-served to target the Cuban recoiless rifle team (top right).

This time the rounds are too close; Lt Huerta (bottom left) looks on as the recoiless rifle team (red bead center) goes to ground, suppressed, next to Samurai 13.  Samurai 14 (bottom right) returns fire, to no effect.

On the edge of Objective Mustang, the Venezuelan rifle team there (center) lays down covering fire as the enemy commander falls back (left, from building at bottom center).  The enemy fire pins Samurai 14.

The Venezuelan rifle team then breaks cover, moving north through the fields to try to reach and rally the suppressed team nearby.

But Lt Jaramiho's Samurai 11 (bottom left) spot them (top right) and fire, pinning them!

Though the Cuban rifle teams are a mess, things start to look up when the mortar team (bottom right) sights in on Hill 48 and begins dropping rounds, putting casualties on the enemy HMG up there.  This means the HMG Technical has been knocked out, and the HMG and AGL teams are both 'men down' on the hill, with no one to rally them.  The bad guys forseaw this and, coupled with Samurai 11's threat to their right flank, began evacuating Objective Mustang in order to fall back on Hill 48 where they could consolidate and hopefully get those two crew-served weapons back into action.  Which means Samurai 11 needs to push hard into Objective Mustang and try to cut them off...

So Lt Jaramiho pushes Samurai 11 forward, but as they cross the street the Venezuelan rifle team in Objective Corvette (top right) spots them and fires.

The Cubans make is safely to cover (bottom left), where they immediately open fire on the Venezuelan team they just pinned.

The Venezuelan team is knocked out (bottom left), and the trainee team they were looking to help is forced to fall back (top left, from center).

"Samurai 6, this is Samurai 11, we've got our ass hangin' out up here, we need some help!"

Samurai 6 drops his head and lets out a curse.  "Ya scared, L-T?" queried the Platoon Sergeant.  "Negative, we've just got men down everywhere and I ain't got time to get to them.  How do I get to them all?"  "One at a time, LT, one at a time."  Lt Huerta leads the command element in a crouch across the road (bottom right), where they set about checking on Samurai 13 and the recoiless rifle team.  Samurai 13 has taken too many casualties; Lt Huerta orders them to collect their men and move to the rear.  The recoiless rifle team, however, is back in the fight, and they send a 90mm round at Objective Corvette (top center).

The round hits the building, but the bad guys are unfazed.  They return fire, but it is also ineffective.

With Samurai 6 and the recoiless rifle team dodging incoming fire at top right, Samurai 14 moves left to help out Samurai 12, but they they sprint they don't quite make it (top left)...

The bad guys catch a tremendous break: as the Cubans attempt to reorganize, their fire slackens, and the enemy takes advantage of the momentary lull in the fighting to rally themselves.  The HMG on the hill (white bead at left) is good to go, though the AGL (white bead at bottom left) is still 'men down.'  The MG Technical (top center left) rallies up to pinned from suppressed, and the suppressed rifle team at center is back in the fight.

*The bad guys rolled a Scurry, and it just un-did a whole lotta work...

The bad guy CO and rifle team continue to pull away from Objective Mustang (bottom right) towards Hill 48 (top left).

At Objective Corvette, the Venezuelan rifle team there drops down out of the building at center and rally the MG Technical back into the fight.  Sure, they rallied the vehicle, but part of the story is that they're pretty fearful of the Cuban recoiless rifle team sending another 90mm package their way.

While across the river, Mako 24 and 25 move up and rally Mako 23.  Objective Corvette is at top right.

Freshly rallied, Mako 25 darts across the bridge as Mako 24 and 25 provide covering fire.  Finally the SF troops are getting somewhere!

Back in the southeast, Samurai 14 (yellow bead at left) dashes forward, takes up fighting positions, and rallies Samurai 12 (red bead).

Samurai 14 (bottom right) looks on as Samurai 12 passes through them and occupies the building Lt Jaramiho and Samurai 11 (who are in the building at top left) wiped out the enemy MG team in (center).  Samurai 11 is finally getting some help, but is it too little, too late?

Seeing friendly forces coming up in support, Lt Jaramiho pushes Samurai 11 deeper into Objective Mustang (center), looking to get a bead on the enemy CO and rifle team falling back to Hill 48 (top left).  It would be really cool to not only whack them, but to keep anyone from rallying the AGL that's still 'men down.'

Lt Huerta and the recoiless rifle team push west (on road, with Samurai 12 at top left).  The assault is finally beginning to shape up.  And then things get a little crazy...

Back in the north at Objective Corvette, where the SF guys have finally woken up, Mako 23 has charged across the bridge, and into close combat in the nearest building!

They easily defeat the rifle team there composed of trainees.  But are they satisfied?

Noooooo!!!  For some reason, known only to the Almighty, the Team Sergeant leads his men out of the building and straight into a close assault of the MG Technical AND the remaining Venezuelan rifle team!!!  Oh, and there's ANOTHER enemy rifle team in the trees at right.

And Mako 23 goes down in a blaze of glory, eliminating the Venezuelan team, but then being gunned down by the machine gun on the enemy vehicle.

Things only get worse as Mako 24 and 25, unsure of what exactly is going on up ahead on the objective, cautiously push their way over the bridge and up to the first building.

With the sudden appearance of the enemy MG Technical on the road directly ahead of them, the members of Mako 24 and 25 are not only no longer curious about what happened to Mako 23, they find themselves reviewing their life decisions that brought them to be standing in the middle of a nameless street in Avalor, face to face with an enemy MG truck.

The enemy rifle team that had been suppressed in the fields at bottom left moves north to reinforce Objective Corvette, falling in behind (center left) the MG Technical.

Immediately thereafter the enemy machine gunner proceeds to rip off an entire belt of 7.62mm ammo at the remaining Special Forces teams...

Mako 24 is gunned down  (top right) and Mako 25 (bottom left) is forced to fall back over the bridge, suppressed.

With the enemy distracted, I guess, Samurai 6 gets his men moving in the south.  Samurai 11 (top left) and 12 (bottom right), as well as the 60mm mortar team (off camera to right) hold position while the CO, recoiless rifle team, and Samurai 13 come on line on the road and being moving north.

Seeing the enemy Technical (top center) tearing a hole in the SF teams, the recoiless rifle team fies another 90mm round at it.

Once again the round impacts close (explosion on road at right), forcing the Technical to take shelter among the buildings of Objective Corvette (left), suppressed.

The enemy MG team on Hill 48 (bottom right) returns fire on the recoiless rifle team (top left)...

But the rounds are wide of the mark, and once again the Corporal (bottom center) orders his crew to reload and return fire, knocking out the enemy HMG team!!!  And then what happens?

The bad guys receive reinforcements, two more rifle teams composed of Venezuelan regulars (bottom left, which is the northwest corner of the board, right behind Hill 48, at center).

The Cuban company goes firm and puts out max fire: in the village, Samurai 11 targets the fleeing enemy commander and a rifle team, but the they just end up exchanging ineffective fire.  Which is really disappointing as Samurai 11 had managed to get into perfect position AND caught the enemy in the open...

The 60mm mortar team pounds the northern group of building near the bridge, causing casualties among the enemy rifle team there (bottom left) and forcing the Technical to fall back, suppressed.  Off camera to left, Mako 25 self rallies back into the fight.

In the center, Samurai 12 and 14 fire to the north, putting casualties on the enemy rifle team at top center.  Suddenly the enemy situation in the north isn't looking so bad.

The recoiless rifle team (bottom center) fires a 90mm HEAT round at the enemy Technical (top center, just visible through the trees), but it misses.

Back on the Cuban left, Samurai 11 and the enemy CO and rifle team again exchange ineffectual fire.  Unbelievable!  Two rounds of fire against two enemy teams bunched up in the open, and nothing...

The enemy CO and rifle team are able to fall back into cover, and the rifle team rallies the AGL team (white bead at top left).

Looking north to south at Hill 48, the Venezuelan reinforcements move towards the bridge (off camera to left).  As good as things were looking there for the Cubans (two 'men down' rifle teams and a 'suppressed' Technical), these guys are about to ruin the party...

The recoiless rifle team (bottom center, with Lt Huerta's command team to their right and a rifle team to their left) quickly reloads and takes another shot at the enemy Technical (top left)...

BAM!!!  The Technical is knocked out (bottom left).

The 60mm mortar team (bottom right) sights in on the southwestern base of Hill 48 (top left), targeting the enemy CO, rifle team, and AGL team, suppressing the rifle team and again putting the AGL team 'men down.'

Samurai 11 (bottom center) takes a third shot at the enemy CO and rifle team, and again misses.  Well, at least this time they were in cover...

But then the enemy CO dashes in to rally the troops, and it does not go well at all!  The AGL team is out of the fight, and the rifle team runs off the map!

But the enemy reinforcements (bottom center) keep pushing east (left) towards the bridge, getting closer to reaching their suppressed buddies and rallying them back into the fight.

Lt Huerta gets his men up and moving north across the fields as Samurai 11 (top left) and the recoiless rifle team (bottom center) provide overwatch.

But Lt Jaramiho isn't content to just sit tight, and he sees the enemy CO sitting all by his lonesome at the base of Hill 48 (top left), so he leads Samurai 11 forward (center left).

Forcing the enemy CO and his team to take off up the hill.  His center and right have collapsed; a lesser man would lead his troops off the field of battle, but not him!  He's on his way to catch up with the two Venezuelan squads of reinforcements, and see if they can get the two teams of trainees back into the fight, maybe halt the Cuban attack in the fields.

Mako 25 cross the bridge again (center), trying desperately to get into position to keep the Venezuelans from rallying the two suppressed enemy rifle team s (top center left and top right), but the Venezuelans are pushing very hard to get to their comrades.

The first Venezuelan team moves up (bottom right), and Mako 25 opens fire...

But the rounds miss, and the bad guys return fire, putting casualties on Mako 25.  Dammit!!!

But then the favor is returned: as the bad guys at bottom left are shooting up Mako 25 (off camera to left), their buddies at bottom right decide to fire on Samurai 12 (top center).  The rounds miss and Samurai 12 returns fire, putting casualties on them.

The 60mm mortar team and the recoiless rifle team pound the enemy positions around the bridge, suppressing an enemy rifle team and causing casualties on the other Venezuelan team.  Samurai 6 leads all the rifle teams forward.

Keep going...

The noose is tightening.

The enemy CO (bottom right) is trying desperately to reach his beleaguered troops...

But as he reaches two 'men down' teams...

The Cuban recoiless rifle team (bottom right) spots them between the two buildings and takes a shot...

The 90mm HE round knocks an enemy rifle team out (far left), and the enemy CO is forced to fall back, suppressed (bottom right).

As the Cubans close in and finish off the opposition and accomplishing their mission.  Hill 48 has been taking and the enemy terrorist training areas have been eliminated, clearing the way for Lt Reyna and 3rd Platoon to assault the terrorist barracks on Avalor.

The game was fun, but dragged on a little bit, though part of that is my fault for essentially playing it to the death, rather than having the bad guys withdraw once it became apparent they couldn't hold Hill 48.  Another thing, and this will probably sound silly, but I really did not enjoy playing a team-level game with individually-based troops.   It's really not that big a deal, but I guess I've just got some sort of mental block; it was aggravating me the whole game, and all I could think about was re-basing them onto team bases.  Which is ridiculous...

The tally was a bit severe: the Cubans suffered 25 casualties, while the bad guys suffered 45 casualties, two Technicals destroyed, thirty men and three machine guns captured.  The fight went halfway to plan: I expected the Cubans to carry the day of course, though I figured the main assault would have been on Hill 48 via double envelopment by the Samurai elements from the left and the Mako elements from the right.  But, due to a stronger than expected enemy deployment near the bridge, exacerbated by a bit of recklessness by the Special Forces platoon, shot that off.  However, the Samurai elements made excellent use of their recoiless rifle and 60mm mortar, which pounded the hell out of the enemy main positions on Hill 48.  Ultimately the enemy had to cede Hill 48 to the Cubans, and the should have simply withdrawn to the west, but instead they attempted to make a stand near the bridge and were simply pounded into submission by the recoiless rifle and mortar teams.

Next we have Unit 101 making a grab for an HVT, followed by 3rd Platoon's assault on the terrorist barracks, then another Unit 101 HVT grab to finally bring Operation Payback to a close.



  1. Hello Jack,

    A little late but still here! I agree it did seem to drag out a little but a good report nevertheless.

    I also thought it was strange you were using individual bases but 5 Core Company Command. I thought you have done this before and it worked OK and I guess it made sense on the larger table. I do not think anything is gained with individual bases compared to units basing, except you can reuse those individuals for other games. But you have so many single based soldiers to choose from that this is probably not a problem for you :-) It is likely a personal choice as it does not really matter visually.

    1. No sweat buddy, always good to see you Shaun, I hope all is still well! You're right, I hadn't done singly-based guys for 5Core Company Command before, and I didn't like it. It's really not a huge deal, just a mental hang-up/personal preference. So I'm working on re-basing... ;)


  2. maate ! , ..I've had a great night reading your AARs . Sabot bases might be worth a try ?

    1. Hey buddy, I appreciate you spending the time to go through all these, hopefully they were a bit of fun entertainment.

      I hear ya on the sabot bases, but they're really not for me. I don't like the look, they're too big, and they never work (for me) as planned, I always get some flock in some place I'm not supposed to and it becomes damn near impossible to get the guys in and out in a timely manner. Oh, and I don't like the look of taking guys out as they suffer casualties, where you end up with two guys 'carrying around' three empty slots.

      But that's just me!


  3. Love the terrain & models and this type of scenario ! U R da Mann Jack !

    1. Thanks man, glad you liked it.