I brought to lists, pitching USMC with Cobra Air Support against a mixed bag of Insurgents, featuring Hardcore Foreign Fighters (the best of the best), regular Taliban and a small group of Local Militia hired to support the hardened troops.
The task at hand was to hunt down and kill Abu al Kabris, a high ranking leader in the Insurgent hierarchy who was believed to have a safehouse in a small industrial complex in the mountains.
|The Target: Abu al Kabris|
The USMC moved in slowly, covered the hills on the north-eastern part of the battlefield which overlooked a good part of the map.
Soon, a firefight erupted on the eastern flank as US Marines moved in, surprising the PKM-Team that where in an exposed position without cover.
The American killed three of four Taliban, the return fire caused a single casualty on the American side who turned out to be lightly wounded.
After seeing three of his mates go down the PKM-gunner decided to retreat into the nearby bushes but got shot during his retreat and didn´t get up again...
The nearby RPG-Team then unleashed a volley, scored a direct hit on an American Fireteam and caused two more casualties, one of which was a serious wound.
The US answer was swift, a fireteam unleashed hell on the RPG-team, the Forward Air Controller called in support from the Cobra Helicopter and though the request was successful, the strike would be delayed due to the RoE and Clearing procedures, giving the Taliban enough time to evacuate the position.
However, the infantry fire did kill most of the cell before the Taliban moved away.
The Taliban then consolidated their groups on the eastern flank and moved towards the buildings to avoid (or at least delay) further Airstrikes, leaving the left US flank relatively open.
Instead, they focussed on defending the western flank and tried to call in more reinforcements, who arrived in the form of two small cells in the back area of the US. One of those was quickly spotted and dispatched before they could mount a devastating rear attack from their ambush position, but the other team appearing out of a compound forced the US Marine players to divert a full Fireteam to guard the exit of the compound.
The game was finally decided when the US Marines tried to push on the right flank and ran into very determined resistance from a Syrian LMG-Team and an Afghan RPG-Team of Hardcore Taliban. Though the US where able to deal with the Afghan Team and initially pinned down the Syrians, they soon found themselves under a barrage of RPK-fire.
|The Syrian LMG Team - the Game Changer|
The final, incredibly lucky series of rolls was the US attacking the Syrian LMG team, firing first with four firepower successes. All four where saved by the Syrians, who counter-attacked with 5 Firepower dice, rolling ALL successes and had the US blundering by failing ALL 5 saving rolls against a 4+
Three KIA where the result, bringing the Taliban up the Taliban victory score close to auto-win. They now needed to roll a 2+ to win the game (trying once each turn) and thus we had a Taliban victory, as the US where far from killing the HVT.
Decisive Taliban Victory!
Everyone had great fun and loved the game, so I´m looking forward to playing some more demo-games, we seem to be on the right track. Some small balancing tweaks and finishing the writeup on the basic rules and we can enter the public playtesting stage!