Rants about Wargames, Photography and whatever else strikes my fancy

Friday, November 6, 2015

I am a sneaky git, but I have a table

The next round of the Infinity Escalation League is finished. In a suspense-packed game that was entertaining to the last order, Henning's Yu Jing force met my Haqqislam soldiers. It was also the first real game played on my newly built gaming table, which has now been appropriately consecrated with dice.

Round 5: Fight!

The mission was capture the antenna. Three Antennas along the middle, in a right angle to our deployment zone. I fielded the following:

A specialist team made up of an Al'Hawwa Hacker, a Hunzakut Forward Observer, a Kaplan Doc, a Ghulam Doc and a Tuareg Hacker.
Fire support was provided by a Djanbazan with HMG, a Lasiq Sniper. Two Naffatun joined in as cheerleaders and to introduce any camouflage to a face full of flame.
A Fiday and two Ghazi Muttawi'ah to occupy the midfield, as well as a Ragik ready to punch from aerial deployment completed the troops. All of this was commanded by a Hafza Lieutenant.
View it in Army 5

My enemy fielded (from memory) a Bao Sniper, a Ninja Hacker, two Guilang FOs, an Oniwaban, two remotes (one of the MSV2 variety and one of the Holoprojector thingies), a Keisotsu, a Tiger soldier paramedic, all commanded by a Daofei with Spitfire.

It's called tabletop because you set your gaming table atop another table
and play on top of that.


I drew Telemetry as a classified objective, as well as the repair a drone one. Made for an easy choice considering my lack of any drones or TAGS. I won the roll of and went second.
My Lasiq and Djanbazan deployed so they had a good view of the Antenna on my side, as well as one angle of approach to the middle one. The Ghulam Doc lay down on the roof close to the Lasiq ready to render medical assistance.
Kaplan, Naffatun and my Hafza (disguised as a Spitfire Odalisque) set up in a container yard to my right, covering themselves against airdrops. The two Ghazi went to the left, ready to make a flanking dash for the center antenna and be a nuisance.
My Hunzakut snuck up behind the garage on the left. The Al'Hawwa set up forward to the right, covered by some crates. The Tuareg switched on his thermooptic camouflage and lay in waiting behind a container close by the middle objective. The Ragik received orders to attack from my right flank.
My Fiday, once again impersonating Gogo Marlene, hid a little left of the center, behind yet another container.

The general game plan was: Draw Henning's forces forward and to the left. Whittle them down as much as possible with mines and crossfire, then sucker punch from behind with the Ragik and Tuareg. Throw the Kaplan Doc forward supported by the Naffatun and take the middle.

Henning set up his troopers with good firing lanes. The MSV2 remote covered the approach of my Fiday and Ghazis, as well as the garage, the Hunzakut was hiding behind. The Bao sniper took a rooftop with a good view. The other Remote holoed as an Aragoto, various came tokens hid near the midline. Ninja and Oniwaban used their TO camouflage and deployed hidden. Keisotsu hid in the back.

First turn
Do you know the saying, "No battleplan survives contact with the enemy." Well, first turn left mine bruised and bloody on the ground.

The Bao took full advantage of my offensive fire base and first took out my Lasiq and then my Djanbazan and with DA ammo nonetheless, putting them beyond the reach of even Haqqislam's vaunted doctors. Then I think the fake Aragoto advanced and revealed itself as a Remote. I had already been scrambling plans how to deal with it, so I was relieved to see it was "merely" a drone. The Daofei revealed and sprayed one of my Naffatun with hot lead from his Spitfire, leaving her unconscious.

In my turn, the Ghazi, true to their name stormed forward. One of them took a hit, but dogged kept him on his feet. He promptly used his Jammer to fry any communications equipment on one of the Guilangs, leaving him in an isolated state. The Kaplan managed to get my Naffatun back on her feet, advanced and took the objective on my side of the table, before scurrying back into cover.
I believe I also had my Hunzakut drop a mine and recamo.

Foxtrot masquerading as Hunzakut since they favor stylish headwear
and forward observing

Second turn
Yu Jing moved in. The Bao took a higher position atop a roof. The MSV2 remote also moved up. covering the approach of my Ghazi, Hunzakut and Fiday. The other Remote moved closer to the middle antenna which my Al'Hawwa took as an opportunity to hook it up to 4chan, immobilizing it for the next two rounds under an avalanche of terrible fan fiction.

Kirk is an Ocelot? Does not compute. DOES NOT COMPUTE! ERROR! ERROR!!!

The Tiger moved in from the right and fired at my Al'Hawwa, but he was close enough for my Boarding Shotgun to do its work, leaving him unconscious. That earned him the ire of the Daofei, though, who moved around the corner and dropped him with a Spitfire burst, before retiring back behind a building.
The Ninja hacker revealed and took the middle antenna, as well as an Guilang, who took the antenna on Henning's side. Also, my Kaplan died, I think from the combirifle of the Oniwaban.

At this point I was very tempted to go all in with my Tuareg and Ragik, but after a consultation with my inner Captain Jack Sparrow. ("Wait for the opportune moment!") I decided to only drop in the Ragik. The Ghazi who was left, ran the gauntlet, triggered a mine, dodged and managed to Jammer the Oniwaban, but only revealed him.
The Ragik walked in from the right and opened fire at the Daofei. And after a lot of ineffective shooting, he managed to actually drop her, but with himself in the Dogged state, ready to drop dead once my turn ended. Apparently my dice really don't like me playing sneaky.

Not pictured: invisible Tuareg

Well, screw you dice! At this point anyone, who can not provide orders for my Tuareg or take objectives is expendable. I tried to at least secure the Classified and Forward Observe the Bao with my Hunzakut. Once again, DA ammo left my trooper in the dirt. With my last orders, I prepared to  secure my objective, as well as my troopers lives as best as I could. The Fiday dropped a mine, leaving impersonation, to set up a double are on my Antenna.

Third turn 
Luckily, my heroic Ragik had actually put Henning's force in Loss of Lieutenant, so he was hampered by an entirely irregular force. His Ninja made a dash for the antenna at my side, but fell to an ARO. Then he moved everyone of his troopers up, to cover the mid and set up AROs, while I tried my best  at channeling Hassan-i Sabbah, looking calm and not get excited as one after the other, his troopers moved away from my Tuaregs hiding spot. Well, mostly.

This picture is not chronologically correct here, but it shows the relevant area

I felt a bit bad for what happened then. My Tuareg revealed, only to immediately dodge a mine blast. I moved him into my first combat group, giving him about five orders to play with. He made a dash for the antenna on Henning's side and with Haqqislam's high willpower, had no problems flipping the switch. Next, he successfully managed to use his Hacking Device to mark a Guilang, netting me the Classified Objective.
Then, I tried to go for some more tiebreaker points and shot at the Guilang knocking him out. And promptly got myself shot unconscious by the Bao.

Henning had one antenna and secured his HVT as well as mine, netting him four points
The Tuareg nicking the antenna and completing the classified ended the game with seven points for me.

Haqqislam wins 7:4 (90:114)!

What have I learned?

1. Hidden deployment is great if your enemy does not see it coming. I will now be fielding my Tuareg more often and eagerly await a resculpt. I won't lie, I spent the evening browsing Army5 looking for nasty surprises possible with it. As if the Major had not already convinced me.

2. My table needs some higher terrain pieces. For this game it was fine, but if any of us had invested more in snipers, HMGs and other long ranged weapons, it could have been a slaughter. Also, showing my painted street is well and good, but one or two vehicles can break up long firing lanes nicely.

3. Yu Jing can field a surprising amount of visors.

4. Deploying your fire support to timid, will make unable to do their job (see last game). Deploying them to aggressively will lead to them shot dead. On the other hand, my infiltrators were well deployed this time.

5. Ghazi are awesome. Five points for a perfect chain rifle platform of annoyance and the Jammer heaps more awesome on this great package.

6. Anyone know where I can buy glossy black dice? Because despite them being sadists, I liked the game.

I had way too much coffee during today's meetings and am writing this while sitting in a train...

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