Home Forums Nordic Weasel Games Historical Hammer of Democracy…in Vietnam

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  • #118605
    Nathaniel Weber
    Participant

    I have a growing 20mm Vietnam collection (shameless plug! but it does keep you on TWW!) and, being an inveterate tinkerer and sometimes game designer, I have been designing a small unit game to have platoon-sized units fight each other with a card-drawn, action-based game. However, those rules are ill suited to big fights, and my collection has grown enough that now I want to do big battles. I love Squad Hammer for 6mm scifi, so gave Hammer of Democracy a whirl for Vietnam. In my first game I modified nothing (well, I added a few little rules on the fly…the rules cover does say they are Friendly) just to try it out. They worked great! I have more details to Vietnamize the game, but for now here is a quick report on my game.  I’ll fill in some info between the pictures.

    I rated both PAVN and US Army troops as Dependable (7 damage points), with normal command (2D6 choose highest). However, I gave the Americans lavish support (2D6 choose higher) and the PAVN poor support (2D6 choose lower). I wanted something to illustrate the Americans’ deadly firepower, even at platoon level, but something more elegant than just giving Americans a to hit bonus or more damage or what have you.

    Terrain was (what I had on hand) rolling hills and areas of scrub brush/elephant grass.

     

    So I ended up placing the American M-60 teams (counting as LMGs) on a sizeable hill near the American starting area, but this ended up being what tacticians might describe as a BAD CALL.  The M-60s had good cover (I figured that their position on the slope would give them some cover from the crest) but their position ended up creating a huge dead area on the other side of the hill, which the PAVN took ruthless advantage of later in the game.

    As the M-60s traded some fire with the PAVN, I repositioned one American squad to give the gunners some cover, but the PAVN player (a scoundrel and a cad ) got his MMG set up and opened fire on an American squad. They were clearly enfiladed so I gave the MG a to hit bonus and in two rounds of firing they annihilated the squad, and their return fire chewed up another American unit. However, being more limited in their support options that PAVN didn’t get a lot of support fire opportunities.

    Now, with the PAVN MG in place and their other troops sneaking up on the M-60 teams, the fight was fully involved. I had let the Americans get badly positioned, but their superior support dice did allow them support fires from the machine gun teams.  Note the totally baller use of Litko muzzle flash markers to help tell this INCREDIBLY COMPELLING visual story.

    Then the hammer fell.  PAVN squads exploded out of the dead ground and attacked both M-60 teams.  One team was taken frontally and survived (but retreated, and was wiped out later).  The other team caught it in the flank and was overrun.

    But the Americans weren’t through yet.  Small arms fire destroyed one of the PAVN attackers and a counter attack, up the hill slope, did the other squad in (but the counter-attackers were then gunned down by that PAVN machine gun).

    And with that counter attack, the fight was pretty much over.  The Americans were chewed up badly (2 squads and 2 MG teams lost), as were the PAVN (3 squads lost, their MG team damaged).  The two sides fell back and the game was over. (Also it was late and I was tired.)

    The rules worked wonderfully! Without much tweaking more Vietnam-y things can be added and I plan on making these my rules for big battles. Some stray thoughts:

    1. The support rules are wonderful.  They make machine gun teams vital and can be used to show a force fighting better and more efficiently, without a bunch of +1 bonuses.
    2. Gonna design my own QRS. Sorry, Ivan!
    3. I was considering making a heavy machine gun team move as infantry, but not be allowed to Move Out.

    Thanks for looking!

    #118608
    John HoveyJohn Hovey
    Participant

    Nice AAR, thanks for taking the time to post it

    • This reply was modified 8 months, 2 weeks ago by John HoveyJohn Hovey.

    Later
    John
    https://lzbravo.blogspot.com/

    #118612
    Just Jack
    Participant

    Fantastic, Nate!  That was a lot of fun, thanks for sharing.  Sounds like the rules did what you needed them to do.

    V/R,

    Jack

    #118614
    WhirlwindWhirlwind
    Participant

    Lovely looking game.  Great to see those Esci VC/NVA figures made to look so nice, I have very fond memories of those miniatures.

    https://hereticalgaming.blogspot.co.uk/

    #118637
    Tim Snoddy
    Participant

    Great report and fantastic looking game.  How machine guns work in a historical fashion is a real shock to some.  I had one Bolt Action player stress out as I could not accept it was suicide to advance across open ground in front of a machine gun with usable support points.  Yep the Hammer series is superb, I am pretty convinced it can be successfully tweaked to just about any period.  I have managed to get up to about forty units on table and still play in reasonable time period, circa four hours.

    #118761
    Darkest Star GamesDarkest Star Games
    Participant

    Oh man, that’s a bloody one.  Shoulda called for Redleg!  Sounds like it was a lot of fun.

    Bet you’ll never make that MG mistake again, eh?

    "I saw this in a cartoon once, but I'm pretty sure I can do it..."

    #118793
    Nathaniel Weber
    Participant

    Thanks, all!

    Oh man, that’s a bloody one. Shoulda called for Redleg! Sounds like it was a lot of fun. Bet you’ll never make that MG mistake again, eh?

    Indeed, Darby—complete rookie error!

    Great report and fantastic looking game. How machine guns work in a historical fashion is a real shock to some. I had one Bolt Action player stress out as I could not accept it was suicide to advance across open ground in front of a machine gun with usable support points. Yep the Hammer series is superb, I am pretty convinced it can be successfully tweaked to just about any period. I have managed to get up to about forty units on table and still play in reasonable time period, circa four hours.

    Funny that gamers would be frustrated by powerful MGs! I agree the game is excellent.

    Lovely looking game. Great to see those Esci VC/NVA figures made to look so nice, I have very fond memories of those miniatures.

    Thanks! I had found a 3-pack of those Esci minis on eBay about 5 years ago and it’s what kickstarted my Vietnam collection (I already had Americans in metal).

     

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