Tuesday, 4 June 2013

More on command and control project

In my last post I posed an idea for a platoon level game that would feature a team of players remotely directing individual squads in a platoon while an umpire managed the opposition. I used WW2 as the default setting, although also suggested Vietnam as a possible ready alternative, particularly as RAFM has published Charlie Company, a set of platoon level rules which does exactly this.

However, I've also brainstormed some other ideas for games which should fit into a similar format, namely:

The Raid scenario - in this scenario, the Blue forces (the players) have an assigned objective which has been reconnoitred in detail in advance. A good example is Operation Deadstick. There would be a pre-game sequence in which the players would review intelligence on the target prior to the game itself and make their plans accordingly. This would include information on the assets at their disposal and any rules of engagement in force. Rather than each player having a brief assigned by the umpire, the mission commander briefs the players in advance prior to the game going into effect.

The Siege scenario - this is even easier for the umpire, and I think works well with only one or two players. Take a look at the game Zulus on the Ramparts by Victory Point. It is relatively easy to program the Zulu attacks and reactions, and it is up to the players to co-ordinate their available resources in terms of men, firepower, ammo and water. In this scenario, the players are likely to be operating in a much more restricted area, while under attack by Red force. There is less of an issue with communications.

The Convoy scenario - Blue force is escorting vital supplies from A to B. It is up to the players to decide on the marching order and any variations in the route as well as how armed forces defending the convoy are to be deployed. There is a broader geographical element here, which reverts to tactical play as and when enemy forces are encountered. The players know where they are going but have no idea what they will meet on the way. A good example is a WW2 convoy across the North Atlantic. Another example would be Crusaders on their way to Jerusalem with plenty of pilgrims to protect.

Depending on the success of the project as outlined in this post and the previous one, I may also introduce a battalion level module based on command of armoured formations, possibly in a Cold War environment (e.g. West Germany, circa 1984). Each player would be responsible for at the minimum a platoon. I am a big fan of Howard Coyle's excellent Team Yankee, and the armoured missions outlined therein, plus also own Steven Zaloga's Red Thrust, and The Bear Went Over The Mountain (Soviets in Afghanistan). All offer plenty of food for thought.

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