Last week, Ian Shaw and I played out a game of CWC. Ian brought along a T-72 Regiment with 3 battalions of T-72s and a battalion of BMPs. I had an ad hoc battlegroup consisting of an armoured recce regiment squadron (4 Scorpions, 1 Striker, 1 Blowpipe, 1 infantry with Charlie G, 2 Spartans and a HQ), a Chieftain squadron (4 Chieftains plus a HQ) and a mechanised company (three infantry, 2 Milan teams, 4 FV432, 1 Blowpipe and 1 Spartan, plus an HQ). The battlegroup CO had 2 FV438s attached, plus a couple of tracked Rapier launchers. Artillery support comprised 2 Abbot regiments (3 batteries each) and the CO could call on three Lynx with Milan for flank security.
I deployed my armoured recce squadron near woods on my right flank, the infantry in woods in the centre and the Chieftains in woods on the left. Ian chose to bring his regiment on to the right half of the table, as I looked at it, and proceeded to advance as rapidly as his command rolls allowed, which was only a maximum of 1 successful order per battalion. In my first turn I moved the armoured recce into the woods in front of the Soviets, taking up concealed positions at the edge of the woods. I also started to move the Chieftains across from my left to the right.
Ian's next move got him within sighting range of the recce, so they opportunity fired, but didn't cause an enormous amount of damage. Ian's concentrated tank fire only managed one kill off a Scorpion, but suppressed almost all the rest. However, a mixture of failed command rolls and blunders contributed to my recce surviving another turn. In my turn, the three Lynx made an appearance, using their area weapons and ATGM attacks to good effect, knocking out several T-72s in the battalion closest to my right table edge. I also dropped smoke on the T-72 battalion in the centre, which reduced the shots available against the armoured recce.
In turn 3, Ian's luck disappeared completely. He had blundered several times already, without much effect and many units flatly refused to move, but in this turn, with the British recce at the mercy of the massed T-72s, he threw a blunder that resulted in the three units nearest his HQ (his SAM and AA units) take attacks which suppressed two of them. However, he did manage to take out the recce infantry. In my turn, the Chieftains moved to get a shot down my right flank, although this turned out to be a bit of a mistake, as massed T-72 fire suppressed them all and knocked one out. However, FV438 ATGM fire from the centre knocked out another T-72 on Ian's right flank. I called in an Abbot regiment on the suppressed SAMs and AAs, getting enough hits to knock out the Shilka and Gopher, but leaving the SA-8 Gecko to fight another day. The Lynx then made another appearance, knocking out most of the left flank T-72 battalion and then turned their gaze on the next T-72 battalion in line.
At this stage, Ian called it a night. There was still a good chance that he could exit some units off my table edge, but the regiment had already paid a high price having effectively lost a third of their tank strength. Much would depend on whether the remaining T-72s could keep the Chieftains suppressed and keep the Lynx helos away.
The situation at the end. The small woods top centre is where the armoured recce squadron were slugging it out with the nearest T-72s, while long range fire from the FV438s was coming in from the upper right quadrant. The arc of T-72s running from top left and curving around in front of the woods are almost all burning, thanks to the Lynx. The T-72s in front of the woods were being whittled down by FV438 fire, plus massed Scorpion and Striker fire. Burning SAMs and Shilkas are just out of sight below the photograph.
The Chieftain squadron, caught in the open rushing to assist the recce. All are suppressed with the left hand stand knocked out and burning. The woods to the right are occupied by the mechanised infantry company.
As above in more detail. The flank security helicopters used these positions to launch ATGM at the Soviet tanks.
The massed T-72s of the Tank regiment arrayed in front of the woods occupied by the recce squadron, as viewed from one of the Lynx helicopters.
A veteran Shakleton ECM aircraft overflies the devastation. With the Chieftains suppressed, I suspect discretion would be the better part of valour and the recce would be relocating behind smoke next turn - at least those not KO'd or suppressed.
Ian couldn't get his forces mobilised and rolled a stupendous amount of double 6's. The dice gods had truly deserted him that day. I suspect on a normal day the recce in the woods would have been swept away by salvo rockets and concentrated artillery, and several turns of tank direct fire could also be expected. However, the recce did their job and identified where the Soviets were concentrating and had brought valuable time to allow redeployment of local reserves. Those T-72s move fast when they get a successful order!
All in all a great game. I enjoyed it, not just because my forces did well, but it felt the units were doing roles that they were designed for. Lots of fun.
Thanks for looking.