31 October, 2010

Friendly Faces

Afternoon - Day 2
The Defence of Wilson's Wadi

Senior local Afghans, friendly to ISAF are being held by Taliban forces. The British feel that their position will become untenable if they do not maintain good relations with the local population and rescue the elders.

Rescue mission kicks off

Rescue mission kicks off

Afghan elders escorted in for interrogation - their location will be hidden and the interrogation occurs during gameplay

Afghan elders escorted in for interrogation

First fireteam led by Trust Native Guide - who gives the fire team an bonus to reaction

First fireteam led by Trust Native Guide

They rush from cover to cover, trying to avoid getting caught in the open

Run from cover to cover

Sniper team are well hidden - they are keeping an eagle eye on the roof-top Taliban sentry group

Sniper team are well hidden

Avoiding contact and skirting around the Taliban sentries' controlled zone - no reinforcements will be rolled for until someone opens fire

Avoiding contact

They reach the first target house and stack up to breach and clear the building - so far this is going like a Rogue Spear mission

Reach first target house

Second fire team in support gets hammered by patrolling Taliban - amazingly enough they won the reaction against the Taliban group crossing open ground in the far distance but failed to inflict any casualties on them. The return fire wiped out the four-man fire team and attached medic!

Second fire team in support gets hammered by patrolling Taliban

First fire team clears house and captures the Taliban leader and the Afghan elder alive - somewhat inconceivably the interrogators' D8 had failed to beat the elder's D4 for three turns in a row and the gambit of placing the interrogator in the nearest house (thinking he would then be moving away) has failed spectacularly

First fire team clears house and captured Taliban leader alive

Second Sniper team shows up to overwatch the village as the first sniper team has legged it to give first aid to the downed fire team

Second Sniper team shows up

The Taliban patrol moves into the second building and avoiding fire from the British, wipes out first fire team too

Taliban patrol wiped out first fire team too

The Taliban leader survives their follow-up assault which kills one and captures the other three. The elder (who has been interrogated succesfully) and the traitorous local guide are executed on the spot.

Taliban leader survives assault

The second sniper team has been hit as well, and attempts at their recovery almost prove tragic (both are found to be dead as well)

British pull out


A game of two halves - initally the British were doing so well, but the ninja-like performance of one of the sentry groups proved their undoing.

The British lost this one a staggering 22-0 and lost four KIA, two WIA and three captured. It has proved a filip for the insurgency and more leaders join the Taliban during the evening.

30 October, 2010

The Relief

Morning - Day 2
The Defence of Wilson's Wadi

With the Taliban offensive well under way, the forces at Qandahar Air Base are stretched to breaking point hunting down Taliban artillery sites. Despite this British command insists on sending a relief mission to Arghandab consisting of a Viking IFV with a hand-picked Royal Marine section aboard.

Small relieving column arrives, but the route is littered with IEDs

Small relieving column arrives

The EOD Officer advances towards the first of the IEDs - but the British section leave him without any support and he attracts a lot of small arms fire

EOD Officer advances towards IEDs

His armour is not tough enough to leave him unscathed and the Viking drives alongside the seriously wounded man

Viking drives alongside wounded EOD officer

The Viking and a fireteam lay down suppressive fire and bundle the EOD officer into the back of the vehicle. A group of Talbian, not liking the odds, scarper around the corner, but are caught by reaction fire from the outpost awaiting relief

British fireteam catches Taliban group

Marine fireteam clears the left flank

Marine fireteam clears left flank

WMIK arrives from the village. It turns right to try to clear that flank and bring the relief column through safely

WMIK arrives

Taliban reinforcements arrive - right behind a British fireteam! A second surprise awaits them as an IED hits them immediately - killing one and lightly wounding another

Taliban reinforcements arrive

The IED team is spotted and is lucky enough to survive the fire and take up a new position

IED Team take up new position

Lone RPGer takes aim at WMIK - the WMIK take substantial damage, with its main weapon and drive shaft knackered

Lone RPGer takes aim at WMIK

More Taliban arrive behind the British fireteam on the left (they now have the attention of over 20 fighters all in close range)

More Taliban arrive behind British

The British fireteam attempts to escape but are surrounded - the WMIK is now a mobility kill

British attempt to escape but are surrounded

Taliban group try to cut off last few British escaping as the Viking has hightailed it gunning down the IED team and making some rather spectacular manoeuvres

Taliban group try to cut off last few British

But WMIK crew get behind cover and to safety

But WMIK crew get behind cover


A bit of a catastrophe for the relief column - 4 dead and 2 seriously wounded and the fire-team on the left flank which was surrounded were all taken prisoner after a point blank firefight.
The Taliban win 18-11 and British confidence for the rest of the day is seriously hit ("We are not going to last 18 minutes, old bean...!")

28 October, 2010

Take That Gun

Evening - Day 1
The Defence of Wilson’s Wadi

The British, though they are under severe pressure, ascertain that a heavy mortar is pummelling the airbase at Qandahar from nearby. They put together a scratch force to assault the position and put the mortar tube out of action.

The Taliban-controlled ridgeline presents a formidable challenge.

Taliban-controlled ridgeline

Aggressive British deployment – the GMPG and Sniper teams will keep the Taliban in the compound busy while the two sections rush across the canal to take the objective. This doesn’t turn out well, as before they can even cross the start-line a rogue mortar round lands amongst them, forcing them to stop and take care of their casualties.

Aggressive British deployment

Sniper team goes down under some return fire from the compound

Sniper team goes down

They’ve taken out the Taliban HMG team on the left-most spur of the ridge, but the GPMG team is also taken out

Taliban HMG shot up

A new HMG team has also appeared on the walls of the compound. This fire now hampers efforts of one of the fireteams to reach the special weapons teams' casualties on the rooftop.

New HMG pops up in compound

The arrival of another group of Taliban turns the compound into a veritable fortress, where once it was just an minor inconvenience on the flank.

Compound now full of Taliban reinforcements

The British have taken a real pasting and withdraw

British have taken a pasting and withdraw


The Taliban win 8-1, at the end the British commander taking the unusual (for wargamers at least) decision of shelving the mission in order to maintain fighting strength for the ‘morrow. The British take 2 KIAs and 4 WIAs – this will severely affect their unit roster.

The opening turn was a terrible deal for the British, with Fog of War causing an early mortar round and the GPMG team and Sniper team loosing out to reaction and return fire from a single Taliban group. If the casualty rolls had gone slightly better or the Taliban reinforcements (both scheduled and Fog of War-triggered) hadn't been so strong the mission might have been pursued, but realistically this mission was over at the start of turn 2!

27 October, 2010

Here They Come!

Afternoon - Day 1
The Defence of Wilson's Wadi

The Taliban, without good intelligence on the strength of the British unit attempt to surround and overwhelm them with a decisive enveloping movement. If they can take control of three important landmarks they will be able to dominate the area entirely.

The British position is under threat
British position under threat

The British fireteam on the ridge is hit hard
British fireteam on ridge hit hard

Second fireteam advances to the tomb
Advancing to the tomb

All-round fire on the team in the tomb
All round fire on the team in the tomb

Dog Team runs across to check on casualties. The Taliban react to this movement, but somehow the dog handler and pooch survive, even returning effective fire!
Dog Team runs across to check on casualties

Taliban hit by mortar fire
Taliban hit by mortar fire

Medic shows up alongside the Dog Handler to help out
Medic shows up

Overwatch fire catches advance moving through field
Overwatch fire catches advance moving through field

Tomb is a very dangerous place
Tomb is a dangerous place

Taliban advance falters
Advance falters

Sniper appears in building just behind British, but his fire is less than impressive (1, 2, 3, and 4!)
Sniper appears in building behind British

Mass assault is planned
Mass assault is planned

Sniper team taken out by lone British squaddie
Sniper team taken out

Close assault goes in. The fight continues for several rounds but eventually the British finish it
Close assault goes in


A close-run thing. 17-15 to the Taliban, but a draw is agreed as the Taliban hold none of their objectives.
My feeling was that it was a mistake by the British to try to hold the compound, tomb and hill-top position from the start - this exposed them to all-round fire and prevented them from concentrating their efforts.

The toll on the British is high, as three are killed and 8 seriously wounded.

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