Home Forums Air and Sea Air Operation Deliberate Force – Missile Threat

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    Avatar photoNKL Aerotom

    Bosnia, August 1995, Operation Mistral 2 is in full swing: Croatians are attempting to push back a Serb-held area. This happily coincides with a NATO bombing campaign: Operation Deliberate Force. NATO aircraft will be conducting a Close Air Support (CAS) mission to support the Croatian forces.

    Sparky flight – 2 EA-6B Prowlers, lead the way as a SEAD escort.

    Sparky 2, loaded up with ECM pods and 4 AGM-88 HARM missiles – High Speed Anti-Radiation missiles designed to destroy enemy radar positions.

    Sparky 1 gets a fix on a Serbian Straight Flush SA-6 guidance radar. Sparky 1 knows to wait until he’s close to fire, otherwise the Serbs will switch off their radar, making the HARM useless.

    Python 3 and 4 enter the fray: 2 F-16s on Combat Air Patrol (CAP) and on-call for CAS duties. Cajun 1 is in tow, an A-10 ready to fly Forward Air Controller (FAC) and nominate ground targets for the NATO jets.

    The Serbian forces begin to redeploy to face the Croatian assault… both sides are taking some losses.

    Sparky 1 fires a HARM and destroys the Straight Flush radar. Score one for the good guys!

    Sparky 1 and 2, while invisible to Serbian radars due to their ECM jamming pods, are NOT invisible to Serbian AAA fire – while both destroy a radar site or two apiece, both are hit by AAA fire!. Sparky 1 suffers an avionics failure and immediately requests permission to RTB. Sparky 2 is damaged, but still in one piece – he decides to RTB as well – Its too hot!

    It’s about to get even hotter! 2 Serbian MiG-29s appear from the southwest – their radars don’t actually fail immediately! What have the Serbs been feeding their technicians!? did they have a new load of spares come in just last week? (There is a chance the MiG-29 can have a failure just for entering the game due to poor maintenance and lack of spare parts – there will still be many more chances of failures throughout the game…)

    2 Serbian Mi-8s appear from the North, they’re targeting the Croatian attack! The Mi-8s get to work with their rocket pods, assisting their friendlies on the ground.

    The MiG-29s scream into the fray at top speed, coming from a blind spot – Where’s the AWACS!? – Python flight (The F-16s) don’t notice them until its too late! Cajun 1 watches in disbelief as…

    …. The Serb pilots both ripple fire R-73 Archer IR missiles! the missiles streak home and before the Python flight can attack the MiGs, they have to defend against the incoming missiles!

    Python 4 pulls evasive and makes a last ditch missile defense, diving for the deck – the R-73s explode nearby, damaging his aircraft and wounding the pilot. Python 3 is in a good position to make a defensive break, turning outside the missiles tracking area (the orange card – 45 degrees either side of the nose). The 2 R-73s are defeated (although they would have gone for the EA-6B if it wasn’t scheduled to leave the game next turn)

    Python flight and the MiG-29s scatter, Python 3 and 4 are split up, frantically communicating on the radio trying to identify and track the MiGs.

    Close up on the action… Cajun 1 (the A-10) is down low ready to nominate targets for FAC – but it looks like his CAS element is now engaged in a deadly knife-fight… with missiles!

    Python 4, straying too far into the Serbian air defense network, is targeted by 2 separate SA-9 Gaskins – Both launch SA-9 SAMs!

    Another view of the SA-9 launches

    Serbian ground forces making good progress against the Croatian forces – Croatians almost wiped out!

    Both SA-9s hit Python 4 – the pilot is able to eject, but his F-16 is gone

    Python 4’s pilot is down behind Serbian lines, thankfully there are no actual Serbian ground forces in the direct area. He’s lightly wounded and begins to limp back towards the Croatian lines.

    Python 3 manages to get a bead on one of the MiG-29s – firing 2 AIM-120 AMRAAMs!

    The MiG-29 manages to fool the missiles, dropping chaff and pulling a hard left turn – the Missiles might have a great tracking rate (90 degrees either side of the nose) but the MiG-29 was in the right place at the right time in order to evade them.

    Cajun 1, on his own and deep in the Serbian IADS, is shot down by AAA. The pilot manages to eject

    The picture at game end – both F-16s have to RTB as they reach bingo fuel. The MiG-29s quickly make a getaway.

    Cajun 1, after being shot down is immediately captured by a Serbian Armored unit. Bad times…

    Both Sparky 1 and 2 managed to RTB and land successfully, their aircraft were later repaired. They managed to destroy 4 or 5 Serb radar sites between them before bugging out. NATO lost 1 A-10 and an F-16, although the F-16 pilot made it back to base. The A-10 pilot was only average quality so not that much of a loss.

    The Croatians were completely wiped out from the combined might of the Serbians with their Mi-8 gunships. This gave the Serbs extra victory points, although they didn’t really need it – 2 NATO jets shot down, 1 pilot captured, all with minimal losses gave them a decisive victory.

    One of the most complex and advanced games of Missile Threat yet – this is as complex as it gets: Ground forces, ground assets (AAA, SAMs), modern jets, ordnance AND helicopters.

    Here’s the break down of the points for this game:

    NATO / UN: (350 points total)

    Sparky Flight (SEAD)
    [Sparky 1] EA-6B Prowler (24)
    Competent Pilot (20)
    4x AGM-88 (24)

    [Sparky 2] EA-6B Prowler (24)
    Competent Pilot (20)
    4x AGM-88 (24)

    Total: (136)

    Python Flight (CAP / CAS)
    [Python 3] F-16 (36)
    Competent Pilot (20)
    4x AIM-120 (24)
    6x 250kg Bombs (12)

    [Python 4] F-16 (36)
    Competent Pilot (20)
    4x AIM-120 (24)
    6x 250kg Bombs (12)

    Total: (184)

    Cajun Flight (FAC)
    [Cajun 1] A-10 (21)
    Average Pilot (8)

    Total: (29)

    NATO Total: 349

    Sebian Air Force and Air Defense: (Also 350 points total)

    Sokol flight (AMBUSHCAP)
    [Sokol 1] MiG-29 (31)
    Comptetent Pilot (20)
    4x R-27R (24)
    2x R-73 (8)

    [Sokol 2] MiG-29 (31)
    Comptetent Pilot (20)
    4x R-27R (24)
    2x R-73 (8)

    Total: (166)

    Mi-8 Flight (CAS)
    Mi-8 (5)
    Competent Pilot (8)
    2x Rocket Pods (8)

    Mi-8 (5)
    Competent Pilot (8)
    2x Rocket Pods (8)

    Total: (42)


    3x SA-3 sites (36)
    3x SA-3 Guidance: Low Blow Radar sites (15)
    1x Spoon Rest Early Warning Radar site (12)
    3x Heavy AAA sites (15)
    6x Medium AAA sites (18)
    4x SA-6 sites (20)
    4x Straight Flush: SA-6 Guidance sites (12)
    7x Light AAA sites (14)

    Serbian Total: (350)

    Forces remaining at game end (not including ordnance)
    Serbs: 270 points remaining + 40 victory points for wiping out 100% of enemy ground forces with only 25% – 49% losses.
    Serb Total VP: 310
    NATO: 164 points remaining (1x F-16, 4x competent pilots, 2x EA-6B)
    NATO Total VP: 164
    Result: more than 31% difference: Decisive Serbian Victory

    Avatar photoNKL Aerotom

    The mat is fromt

    Holy ****, this is very impressive looking. On the first picture I said out loud, “ooooohhh”. I thought it was table terrain. Even still, how did you get the picture mat? It really adds to the visual experience. You stands and how they are used is quite attractive looking too.

    Cheers! The gaming mat is from Deep Cut Studio – its a 6′ x 4′ PVC mat that rolls up easily and is nice and durable. I requested the image for WW1 or WW2 europe, but it seems to work nicely for Vietnam and Bosnia too!

    Avatar photoThomaston

    I’m glad this is the upper bar of complexity. How long did it take to play?

    Avatar photoNKL Aerotom

    It took about 2 hours, but that included writing the aircraft rosters and writing lots of notes (it was a playtest and I’m still working out a few kinks and trying to make the rules easier to refer to in-game)

    Missile threat is generally a very fast game – aircraft appear, kill or die in a blaze of glory and then leave the game. Most fighters can only stay on the table for 4 turns before having to RTB, so you have to plan around that. Some fighters can loiter much longer  – as the “Range” (how many turns an aircraft can stay on the table) is the actual combat radius of the aircraft in nmi / 100.

    Avatar photoirishserb

    Now that was just awesome, so much going on.  And great looking too! Thanks for sharing it.

    Avatar photoDan Kennedy

    That’s really great! If you don’t mind, where did you get the counters for the ground forces? Are they from another game or did you produce them yourself or…?


    Avatar photoNKL Aerotom

    Glad you guys enjoyed the AAR!

    The counters will be provided with the Missile Threat rules – in the PDF version you can print them out on stiff card and cut them out. Included will be all the ground assets (AAA, Radars, SAM sites), ground forces like infantry / armor / mobile AA units, and all the missiles and ordnance needed for the game.

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