Scenario 1: Search & Rescue

Search & Rescue - Page Title

SUBMITTED BY ERWIN SABLON

 

Umpired by Erwin Sablon. The players were Joost Van Severen (US) and Walter Van Der Stiggel (VC). We are all from the Bylandt Wargaming Club, Ghent, Belgium.

 

AREA OF OPERATIONS - MAP

Map of the Area of Operations

Map is Orientated with Top = North

TERRAIN SETUP

Fully covered with a mixture of heavy and light jungle with some low hills.  A small stream dividing the table in two.  The stream is fordable along it's length but there is an easier fording spot in the middle of the table. The only open space (on which helicopters can land) on the table are some rice paddies in the upper left corner.  A Huey has crashed in the lower right corner.

US BRIEFING

A Huey has been shot down during a mission.  It has crashed in a jungle area known to have heavy VC activity. The wreck has been located and at least one of the crew appears to be still alive. A rescue team is assembled on short notice to try to rescue the crew. Closest landing spot are the rice paddies. Rescue team has to start from there, collect surviving crew at the crash site and return to the rice paddies for evac.

US Rescue Team

1 squad (Sargeant, RTO, M60 gunner + assistant, M79 and 2 troopers armed with M16) Regular, Veteran
1 squad (Sargeant, RTO, M60 gunner + assistant, M79 and 2 troopers armed with M16) Regular, Veteran

VC BRIEFING

A Huey has been shot down during a mission. It has crashed in a jungle area nearby. As a local VC commander you have assembled hastily a small force in order to take any surviving crewmembers prisoner and hold off/ ambush the inevitable US attempt to rescue the crew. VC forces start from the lower left corner of the table.

VC Force

1 group of village militia (1 leader with AK47, 2 men with AK47, 4 men with rifles), Militia
1 group of main force VC (1 leader AK47, 3 men AK47, 1 RPG), Regular
1 group of main force VC (1 leader AK47, 3 men AK47, 1 RPK), Regular

VICTORY CONDITIONS

Crew rescued : US victory
Crew dead : draw
Crew captured : VC victory

SPECIAL RULES

Searching for the crew at the crash site:  For the VC, use search table with the lowest chance of success.  For the US, use search table with the highest chance of success (I assume the crew wants to be found by their buddies)

VC have +1 on initiative because of VC home country

SETUP

Both players could view the terrain and had to put on a map their routes of travel to the crash site and possible actions of the troops. These plans were communicated to me (the umpire). These orders had to be followed so long as no enemies were encountered. This made it possible for me to put all troops on the table and play without hidden movement because we had only a limited amount of time. This system works fine. It is of course much more important for the VC player to devise a good plan since he doesn't have radios to communicate with once the bullets start to fly!!

US PLAN

Both squads part when they leave the rice paddies. One squad will move as quickly as possible to a low hill overlooking the fording place.  Once this hill is secured they communicate this fact to the other squad and go on 'Watch and Shoot' orders in the direction of the fording place. The other squad awaits the all clear signal, then moves to the fording place. They will cross the stream and secure the far bank. Once the fording place is secured they await the second squad which leaves the hill. The TWO squads will then split up again and converge on the crashed helicopter from two sides. Once the crewmembers are found the whole force returns to the landing site by the shortest route. Any hostile contact will be communicated immediately to the other squad; reaction according to the situation.

VC PLAN

One squad (with RPG) moves straight for the crash site (crossing river but NOT at the fording place) and start searching for the crew.  They return with them via the same route when found. Both other squads move straight to the fording place and prepare an ambush.  The militia on the west side of the ford facing the paddies; the regulars (with RPK) on the east side of the ford.

AFTER ACTION REPORT

The US squad overlooking the fording point spots both VC groups moving North as they approach the fording point. They fire with everything they have but the only result are VC diving for cover. In the next turn the VC militia start to return fire (no result).  The VC regulars bravely cross the fording point under fire from the US squad on the hill. To the frustration of the US player they reach the other side unscathed and deploy in the vegetation on the bank of the river.

Next turn both VC groups and the US squad fire at each other with the following result:  The VC militia are hit very hard (one dead and two injured). Among the wounded is their leader. Understandably they panic (Panic Freeze!). The US squad suffers one wounded but passes its morale test.

The US squad on the hill now contacts the other US squad which starts to advance against the panicking VC militia. The US squad on the hill continues to fire at the regulars which return fire; both with little result.

The second US squad decides to close assault the panicking VC militia. The militia, facing the assaulting US grunts decide it is time to quit and flee across the fording point. At the same moment the US squad on the hill rolls a 01 firing at the VC regulars and the fleeing militia.  As a result four more VC are wounded (3 regulars and 1 militia).

The regulars in turn fail their morale test and get a Panic Freeze result, much to the enjoyment of the VC player. The VC group is still blocking the path of the Americans and his third group is closing on the helicopter crash site.

The US second squad tries to dislodge the panicking VC regulars by again close assaulting them. Unfortunately they come short of reaching the VC and to add insult to injury receive two wounded from the VC fire. Being veterans the pass their morale test with ease and rout the remnants of the VC regulars in a second close assault.  In the process they capture the six wounded VC.

After reorganisation they radio the squad on the hill which starts to move for the fording point.  However, the next turn the third VC squad reaches the helicopter crash site and when the Americans are just united at the fording point and want to start moving again manages to find the pilots by a very lucky die roll (The VC player had to roll a 0 on a D10 to find them,  guess what he rolled...) Game Over. Playing time about 2.5 hrs

RESULT

Marginal VC victory. Although they managed to capture the pilots they lost one dead and six wounded, which were all captured by the Americans. The Americans in turn received three wounded.


 

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