27/09/2018 at 00:18 #100266
Thirty minutes ago Staff Sergeant “Tahoe” Gallarraga accompanied the SLA mechanized battalion’s A Company on a probe northeast of Hill 114, where they discovered the enemy had prepared defenses in that zone, though they were able to secure Hill 27 and thus fulfill their mission of anchoring the right (northern) flank of the upcoming attack on Hill 114. Tahoe was awarded the Bronze Star for his actions taking Hill 27.
Now we join Staff Sergeant “Gundog” Baerga, set to accompany the mechanized battalion’s B Company in the assault on Hill 45, which will secure both the left (southern) flank of the Hill 114 assault, as well as a position to support by fire. The airstrikes by Cuban F-4 Phantoms lift as they command group splits up and moves out to join their units, the sounds of 750-pound bombs exploding still echoing through the valley.
Overview, north is up. Hill 45, with evidence of its pounding at the hands of those hotshot Cuban fighter jocks visible, is at top left. This area is essentially just the bottom right portion of the map used for Op Chunky Bandit fights 1-8. At bottom left is Bridge #2, and the bottom right corner was TF Black’s entry point each game. At center left is the abandoned truck and weapons cache, off camera at top right is The Garage, and off camera at bottom left is Hill 30 and The Church. The enemy bunkers and recoilless rifle are on Hill 45 (top left), their rifle platoon has just come down from Hill 30 (off camera) and is approaching Bridge #2 (bottom left), while the SLA company has just entered the battlespace in the southeast (bottom right).
The opposing forces, with SLA on the right and FSNL (communist neighbors to the north) at left. The troops are all Pendraken 10mm, except the Cuban (singly-based dude at bottom center right), which is Minifigs UK. The M-113 ACAVs are also Pendraken, though the M-48 is plastic from Takara. The two bunkers at bottom left are from Flashpoint Miniatures, and the sandbagged position is from Miniature Building Authority. I’m playing this series of fights (the SLA operation to take Hill 114) using Ivan Sorensen’s “Squad Hammer” rules, modified a bit.
Pendraken North Vietnamese, err, I mean Fédération Socialiste Nationale de Leon, or FSNL, troops launch an RPG at the M-48! To see how the fight went, please check the blog at:
Next up, the FSNL counterattack.
Jack27/09/2018 at 04:19 #100273
A good fight but repeat after me, Jack, Tanks without infantry escorts get shot in the ass.27/09/2018 at 08:38 #100281WhirlwindParticipant
Great stuff Jack, really enjoyed reading through the series. Good-looking table, exciting AARs, perfect.28/09/2018 at 00:15 #100341
Thanks for the tip, Kyote-John, I’ll try and keep that in mind 😉
Thanks, Whirlwind-John, but we’re nowhere near finished for Chunky Bandit: I still have 3-4 fights to go for phase 1b, then moving to some high-speed SOF, direct-action missions (probably 3-4 fights) using either Combat Patrol or Black Ops, then phase 2 is going to incorporate some fast new aerial dogfighting rules and some 10mm ground fights, maybe with Squad Hammer, before phase 3 goes into effect in 10mm with 5Core Company Command. Probably 3-4 ground fights in phase 2 and a dozen or so in phase 3, probably about 15 total air fights in Chunky Bandit.
And I just saw all the messages on my blog, I’m working on it!
Jack28/09/2018 at 16:03 #100382
A victory but at what cost.28/09/2018 at 18:42 #100399
Oh stop it, you’re making me despondent! 😉
If you thought that was bad, wait til you see the next one!
Jack28/09/2018 at 19:58 #100405
Oh????29/09/2018 at 01:54 #100411
The table is set for Chunky Bandit #12, the air assault northwest of Hill 114, hoping to play it and fight #13 tomorrow morning, and #14 on Sunday, and then get them written up. #11 should get posted on Monday.
Jack01/10/2018 at 22:57 #100571
Current situation: It’s 0620 on 4 August 1990 in South Leon. Lt Gouveia has been promised a SLA mechanized battalion, and he has secured (limited amounts of) Cuban air support. The desired end-state is joint Cuban/SLA possession of Hill 114; to that end, the SLA battalion scheme of maneuver is to probe to the northeast of Hill 114 (this fight, which is taking place directly north of the map used for Operation Chunky Bandit fights 1-8), seeking to find an opening in the enemy defenses and exploit it with a hasty attack on the objective, or go firm and secure the right flank of the attack. While this is occurring, Cuban air support will pound Hill 30 (at center right of the Op CB fights 1-8), and then SLA forces will assault and hold Hill 30 (will be Op CB #10) to secure a position to support the Hill 114 assault by fire and secure the left flank of the attack. The SLA command, of course, expects the enemy to vigorously counterattack Hill 30 (will be Op CB #11). Then SLA forces will conduct an air assault to the northwest of Hill 114 (off the map for Op CB fights 1-8 to top left) to isolate the objective, preventing withdrawal and reinforcement (this will be Op CB #12), and then the assault on Hill 114 will commence (will be Op CB #13). Again, SLA leadership presumes the enemy will vigorously counterattack if Hill 114 falls (will hopefully be Op CB #14, assuming the attack on Hill 114 succeeds, but that applies pretty much to all of these).
Fifty minutes ago Staff Sergeant “Tahoe” Gallarraga accompanied the SLA mechanized battalion’s A Company on a probe northeast of Hill 114, where they discovered the enemy had prepared defenses in that zone, though they were able to secure Hill 27 and thus fulfill their mission of anchoring the right (northern) flank of the upcoming attack on Hill 114. Tahoe was awarded the Bronze Star for his actions taking Hill 27.
Twenty minutes ago Staff Sergeant “Gundog” Baerga accompanied the SLA mechanized battalion’s B Company in the assault on Hill 45, which succeeded, but with heavy casualties, including SSgt Baerga himself, lightly wounded and evacuated. The remaining SLA elements quickly established defensive positions atop Hill 45.
Now we join Sergeant “Racer” Palmeiro, who brought a .30-caliber machine gun team up Hill 45 to bolster the defense put on by B Company, as an enemy infantry company closes in to re-take the vital position.
Overview, north is up, with Hill 45 and the remains of the village of Siagnoa at top right, shattered by Cuban air support which aided greatly in B Company securing the hilltop against a dogged enemy defense. At bottom left is Hill 30, with The Church just off camera to bottom left, while at top left is the village of Lasau, with Bridge #1 (the site of the ambush that devastated TF Black in Op Chunky Bandit #8, necessitating this whole push by the SLA mechanized battalion to take Hill 114) at center top. The SLA force is at top right, in and around Hill 45, while the bad guys have their 1st Platoon and their Dshk at bottom left, 2nd Platoon and their CO at left, and 3rd Platoon and their mortar at top left.
The opposing forces, with SLA on the right and FSNL (communist neighbors to the north) at left. The troops are all Pendraken 10mm, except the Cuban (singly-based dude at bottom center right), which is Minifigs UK. The M-113 ACAVs are also Pendraken. I’m playing this series of fights (the SLA operation to take Hill 114) using Ivan Sorensen’s “Squad Hammer” rules, modified a bit.
The military crest of Hill 45 is a raging inferno, the antagonists pummeling each other at point blank range, the Communists marching steadily forward under hellacious fire, the defenders broken and bloody and barely hanging on. To see who holds the hill, please check the blog at:
Things were shaping up for the direct assault on Hill 114, only one task remained: an air assault northwest of Hill 114, to cut the enemy forces off from reinforcement and/or escape. The grim, tired faces of the SLA troops on Hill 45 turned skyward as Cuban F-4 Phantoms thundered overhead, followed shortly by the sound of large rotor beating hot, humid air, and the sight of two Cuban CH-47s hopped into view, heading northwest. On those birds were elements of D Company, along with MSgt “Faceman” Soriano, TF Black’s senior enlisted man, preparing to set down in the middle of enemy territory. Face new that they didn’t really need to ‘win,’ this fight, that their job was really just to tie up as many enemy forces as possible for as long as possible, and that some could, conceivably, consider this a ‘suicide mission,’ but the former US Navy SEAL was quite cool and calm as the Chinook began its descent into the LZ. “We’re just going to kick an anthill, then stomp as many as we can, easy!”
Jack02/10/2018 at 01:15 #100572
Almost a last stand. I thought the other nother commies had you, Jack.02/10/2018 at 14:22 #100605
I like the low angle shots of the battle, makes it look like view from a combat cameraman. Tough fight, I wouldn’t want to be an APC crew.02/10/2018 at 20:17 #100620
John – Dammit, there’s no other-nother Commies, the only Communists are the enemy the Cubans and South Leonians constitutional republics arrayed against the forces of evil!
Thomaston – Glad you liked it, and yeah, the tracks have had a rough time of it. But don’t worry, no tracks in the next fight, it’s all helos!
On a side note, I got both sets of the rest of the planes yesterday, pure awesomeness! I really just working on figuring out flight stands. I’m not going to just lay them on the playing surface, but I’m not as creative, handy, and dedicated as you (I hate making stuff), so I’m having a hard time.
I literally was considering using thumbtacks as the flight stands, but the printed material is so hard I can’t get the tack into them, even when I heat the metal (too scared to try heating the plastic on such a small model)! Though I did manage to snap the wing off an F-4… Just ordered some tiny Litko stands, can’t wait to see if they’ll suit my needs.
Jack02/10/2018 at 21:13 #100621
They are all commies to me…wink wink.
I have no idea how you should make your flight stands.02/10/2018 at 22:16 #100627
I’ll get ‘Ride of the Valkyries’ ready for the next battle report.
With the mini aircraft you can either drill a tiny hole in it or use CA/super glue onto some sort of 2mm clear rod, I’ve just discovered glass fiber.02/10/2018 at 23:42 #100645
I know you, John, you wish everyone was a Commie 😉
Thomaston, with these Litko bases I’m shooting for the ‘glue to the top of the stem’ option. I have no idea had to drill a tiny hole in a tiny airplane!
Jack02/10/2018 at 23:45 #100646
Oh, my Russians and East Germans are… I have a pin vice and tiny drill bits but you have to be careful.03/10/2018 at 04:48 #100656
Yeah, you’re not grasping how small these are. I need to post a pic of one next to its 1/600 counterpart.
Jack03/10/2018 at 05:21 #100657
You could just place them on a ruler.04/10/2018 at 02:21 #100766
Forty minutes (0620 local time) ago Sergeant “Racer” Palmeiro rushed to Hill 45 to reinforce the SLA elements there, which stood up to a ferocious enemy counterattack that came within a whisker of seeing the SLA company ejected from its defensive positions, or annihilated. The SLA troops held onto the hill by their skin of their teeth, seeing many of them decorated for valor following the fight, in which Sgt Palmeiro lost his life. Now (0700 local time) we join Master Sergeant “Faceman” Soriano, with elements of D Company, moving to air assault in northwest of Hill 114 to block enemy reinforcement/escape.
Overview, north is up, Along the left (west) edge of the map is Route 1, the major route leading south from the border/DMZ the enemy is using to reinforce their forces in the South Leon capital of Pendrakenville and the regional capital, Diwala, further east. At bottom right is the northwest end of Hill 114, the ultimate objective of this phase of the operation. Scattered rice paddies dot the countryside, and there are three small hamlets, from bottom left to top right, villages 1 through 3. There is a river running northeast to south, fordable along its length at penalty, though there are two actual fords (center top right and center bottom left) that vehicles could cross and are essentially no hindrance to foot movement.
The opposing forces, with SLA on the right and FSNL (communist neighbors to the north) at left. The troops are all Pendraken 10mm, except the Cuban (singly-based dude at bottom center right), which is Minifigs UK. The two bunkers at far left are from Flashpoint Miniatures, and the sandbagged position is from Miniature Building Authority. I’m playing this series of fights (the SLA operation to take Hill 114) using Ivan Sorensen’s “Squad Hammer” rules, modified a bit.
Chinooks inbound to the LZ. Cue “Ride of the Valkyries”…
The LZ is tight, but within minutes 1st and 2nd Platoons have deplaned and are moving to the sound of the guns. To see how the fight went, please check the blog at:
Next up is the point of this entire exercise, the assault by the South Leon Army’s C Company, with 1st Lt ‘Lobo’ Gouveia tagging along for the ride. Which is a bit worrisome for me, as bad as the Cubans have been fairing in these SLA assaults.
Jack04/10/2018 at 04:23 #100770
Choppers at long last!! Love those Chinooks !!! Good fight and glad to see mortars get some use.04/10/2018 at 19:07 #100817
We have a Chinook down.
Looks like 2nd Squad, 2nd Platoon is not a good place to be, no matter which army. Maybe they both threw grenades at each other.
Also thanks for the review of the rules.04/10/2018 at 19:14 #100818vtsaogamesParticipant
Just wandered over from the Horse and Musket forum where I usually hang my hat. Good to see you here, Just Jack! I’ll have to drop by more often.
There s a chance my crew will pick up Crossfire after a long, long hiatus. Maybe we’ll have reports to post here some time.
It's never too late to have a happy childhood04/10/2018 at 22:42 #100830
John – You have an unhealthy infatuation with mortars 😉
Thomaston – No sweat on the pseudo-review, and the two squads knocking each other out of the fight didn’t bother me, actually made sense to me that they’d both taken enough casualties to be combat ineffective.
Vtsao – Yeah man, I’m here, have been for years 😉 I’m glad you checked in, hope you’re enjoying the batreps, and I certainly look forward to some Crossfire from you and your group.
Jack05/10/2018 at 00:50 #100837
I do…but they work.05/10/2018 at 14:17 #100874
Didn’t work all that well for me…
Anyway, working on the last two fights to take Hill 114 and close out this phase of the operation. Then we’ll have:
-some SOF fights taking out enemy command and control
-the cut off Marine and Para companies fighting to breakout and join the Cuban units just landed on the coast
-a bunch of aerial fights as Cuban air strikes enemy forces on/around Route 1
Jack16/10/2018 at 00:12 #101606
Now (0730 local time) we join 1st Lt “Lobo” Gouveia with C Company (reinforced), assaulting the eastern central slope of Hill 114, who needs to hurry. They need to take the hill and establish their Observation Post so close air support can be called down on enemy elements on Route 1; if this is not accomplished, D Company will be quickly overrun, the breakout attempt by Task Forces Redleg and Razor will be imperiled, and the enemy will continue to reinforce the capital of Pendrakenville, making the offensive to re-take the capital that much more expensive.
Overview, north is up. At left are two fingers running east off of Hill 114, with its mass off camera to left. Off camera to bottom center would be the southeast slope of Hill 114, which featured in fights 1 through 8, off camera to top center would be the northeast slope of Hill 114, which featured in fight number 9, and off camera a ways to top left would be the northwest slope of Hill 114, which featured in fight number 12. Cuban F-4 Phantoms have worked over Hill 114, you can see the craters and bombed out stands of trees. The area is largely comprised of rice paddies, with a stream running north to south, fordable (at a penalty) in all locations by infantry, but vehicles can only pass at the actual fords (bottom center right, center right, and center top right). At top right is the village of Biafra. FSNL deployment in the west (left) and the SLA deployment in the east (right). The SLA CO, 1st Platoon, Rhino 11 (tank), and Cheetahs 21 and 22 (tracks) are at top right, while Lobo, 2nd Platoon, Rhino 12, and Cheetah 23 are at bottom right. The enemy Dshk HMG is in a pillbox at top left, Bunker #1 is at top center left, and their CO, 1st Platoon, and 82mm mortar in the trenchline at far left top, while their recoiless rifle is in a sandbagged emplacement at bottom left, 2nd Platoon is in the trenchline at bottom left center, and Bunker #2 is at bottom center left.
SLA armor and infantry pound the enemy bunker on the northern finger, looking to break in. To see how the fight turned out, please check the blog at:
One more fight in phase 1b, coming right up!
Jack16/10/2018 at 05:27 #101609
Lots of stragglers doesn’t sound good for the Good guys.16/10/2018 at 16:23 #101628
Yeah, it gets ugly, should have it posted Wednesday or Thursday, also have some aerial WWII Pacific batreps I’m working on.
Jack17/10/2018 at 09:56 #101683
Looking forward to the air combat stuff.
Also have you sent me an e-mail yet?17/10/2018 at 15:03 #101706
I’ve got to finish the other Chunky Bandit report, then I’ll get to the two dogfights. I’m hurrying!
I haven’t sent an email yet, but will today. I received my package last night, they’re awesome, and now I’m counting everything up to see where I stand. There is one new aircraft type: WWII P-40 (can’t believe I forgot it!), and then some additional models for previous aircraft I ordered that I didn’t order enough of, or replacements for a few I broke.
Jack18/10/2018 at 23:45 #101822
Current situation: It’s 0830 on 4 August 1990 in South Leon. Lt Gouveia has been promised a SLA mechanized battalion, and he has secured (limited amounts of) Cuban air support. The desired end-state is joint Cuban/SLA possession of Hill 114; one hour ago 1st Lt “Lobo” Gouveia accompanies the South Leon Army (SLA) C Company (reinforced), assaulted the eastern central slope of Hill 114. C Company paid dearly, having to essentially annihilate the FSNL (Communist) defenders in their defensive positions, but now the stage is set to accomplish the objective of Phase 1 of Operation Chunky Bandit.
Now (0830 local time) we join 1st Lt “Lobo” Gouveia, SSgt “Tahoe” Galarraga, and Sgt “Snoop” Concepcion, the last three members of TF Black still in action. TF Black has borrowed a few SLA soldiers to carry gear up to Point 112, the military crest of Hill 114, where they will establish the long-awaited Observation Post and begin calling in Cuban airstrikes to cut Route 1. The remains of TF Black is being escorted to Point 112 by the SLA C Company’s 3rd Platoon. This would soon be known as “The Bloodletting at OP ANGEL.”
Overview, north is up. Sure, the map looks flat, but that’s because the play area is so small. At this point we are actually on top of Hill 114, so that the last fight actually took place just off camera to right. The finger at top right is the opposite side of the north finger 1st Platoon assaulted (with the blockhouse), while the south finger has a much more gradual slope into the plateau atop Hill 114 so that it’s not noticeable, but the defensive position where the enemy recoiless rifle was at is just off camera to bottom right. For that matter, the northeast slope of Hill 114, which was run into in Operation CB #1, would be off camera to top center right, and the enemy positions seen in the air assault (Operation CB #12) are off camera to top left. So at far left bottom is Point 112, where the remains of TF Black will establish their OP, and just off camera to left Hill 114’s slope tapers off to the west, where it runs into Route 1. The ground here is cut up by previous Cuban airstrikes on Hill 114, so it’s mostly craters, bombed out stands of trees, a couple of scorched spots (top left and bottom right) from Cuban napalm, and a few patches of trees that weren’t touched by the bombing.
You can see the SLA/Cuban force at far bottom right. Their goal is simple, to get the Cuban stand up to the top of Point 112 (far left) so they can get up on comms and start orchestrating the destruction from above. The FSNL troops are spread across the map, single, confused stands running to and fro with no direction. From the last fight, the 82mm mortar team is at top right, 2nd Squad, 2nd Platoon is the two stands at bottom center, the recoiless rifle team is at bottom left, and crew from Bunker #2 is at center. At top left are stragglers from the air assault on Route 1, at top center are stragglers from the probe to the northeast, at top center right are stragglers from the defense of Hill 45, and at center left are stragglers from the counterattack on Hill 45. The enemy Lieutenant is also at top center right.
A SLA fireteam pins down the Communists while another flanks them.
The aftermath… To see how it went, please check the blog at:
With that, this portion Phase 1b of Operation Chunky Bandit is now concluded, OP ANGEL is in operation, directing aerial interdiction operations to sever Route 1 and isolate enemy forces in vicinity of Pendrakenville, the South Leonian capital city. Now we move to the ‘other’ portion of Phase 1, where TF 23 and TF Dusty are working west of Route 1 to locate and destroy FSNL command and control nodes. We will also have some aerial dogfights, where first Cuban fighters attempt to protect Cuban/SLA ground forces from FSNL air attack, and then, once OP ANGEL is in operation and Task Forces 23 and Dusty have done their jobs, the Cuban Air Force takes the fight to the enemy. Then we’ll move into Phase 2, the breakout by Task Forces Redleg and Razor, cut off north of Pendrakenville. I’ll also be stepping out for a bit to visit the South Pacific, aerial dogfighting style.
Jack19/10/2018 at 03:53 #101828
Good fight, looking forward to the South Pacific air fights. I finished reading Touched With Fire, boy was that grim.19/10/2018 at 10:27 #101849
Man, that’s a lot of bodies.20/10/2018 at 03:06 #101950
John – I’m working on the air fights, but I’m bogging down. Instead of writing them as I go I let them build up, and now I’ve got seven of them sitting there, and they’re not like writing ground fights where you just load the pics and type the narrative, I have to photo-edit every single pic. I need a better way…
Thomaston – Indeed, quite the massacre, but such were the stakes for my little lead antagonists. Aside from playing 7 dogfights, some with as many as 16 aircraft on the table, I cleaned and primed every single aircraft I’ve bought from you so far (all told I think I’m up to almost 200 of your tiny planes) and mounted Zeros, Vals, Kates, Dauntlesses, Avengers, F4 Phantoms, B-57s, MiG-21s, and Su-22s, and ordered some more bases (because I’m too dumb and impatient to have used magnets). In my defense, I had no idea I’d get so addicted…
Jack20/10/2018 at 04:55 #101952
You are such a Butterfly Jack!! I do hope you get it together and write up the air fights. I want to see those Zeros and Wildcats go at it!!20/10/2018 at 15:21 #101976
Regarding my butterfly-ness, you should be used to it by now. Simply too many projects, so many things I want to do, and not enough time.
Regarding the dogfights, I want to be upstairs playing more Chunky Bandit fights, my Spec Ops guys going and taking out bad guys, but I’m downstairs trying to figure out the quickest, slickest way to pull this off. They’re not going to be step-by-step batreps (as I normally do), I’m thinking more like a summary, pointing out key spots. It’s also a little goofy on my end because I was trying to figure out a new set of rules (and make the necessary adjustments to meet my taste), which drove me to change playing surfaces as well, so lots of non-standard stuff (I like keeping everything the same, pushing it out assembly line style).
Can’t promise that I’m not going to sneak upstairs, I’ve been dying for awhile to play with my new Spec Ops dudes, and these dogfight batreps are proving to be a pain in my ass. I’ll get there as soon as I can, I promise…
Jack20/10/2018 at 18:05 #101987
Yup, love playing the games, hate taking the photos and collating them for a coherent battle report.21/10/2018 at 01:10 #102002
Amen. And that’s exactly what happened; haven’t done any of the batreps, but I went and played a rip-roaring game of Special Operations dudes trying to recover an asset, using Ben Lacy’s “SOF Warrior.” Coming up as soon as possible.
Jack21/10/2018 at 02:13 #102007
Damn it, Jack, I was hoping for some South Pacific action!!!21/10/2018 at 14:31 #102027
Oh, stop your whining, I’ll get to it this week.
I’m also working on figuring out why I’m having such a mental block starting the ground portion of Guadalcanal. Not exactly sure what the problem or the solution is, but I’m sure it will result in me buying more figures. While I’ve had a lot of fun and some great fights doing platoon-sized fights in 15mm, it’s not my favorite. It takes too long and too much space, and the painting involved is pretty daunting (even though I already have all lead I need), so I’ve been thinking about going smaller (my old standby, 10mm, or maybe even smaller with 6mm) for platoon, or even company-sized fights, and mix in skirmish in 15mm.
Too many projects…
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