Thursday, 9 June 2016

Cangames Report - Force on Force

Hello Everyone,

I have said in the past that one of my favourite modern warfare rulesets has to be Force on Force from the great folk at Ambush Alley Games...nope, I do not receive any promotional royalties, etc...I just like it that much.  There are a couple of key things about this ruleset...it allows movement and reaction, the mechanics are fairly quick to handle, the rules can be as tight or as loose as you need...no micrometers needed here, and I definitely settled into comfortably gaming the modern era thanks in large part to this ruleset and the community behind it...

Now for Cangames and the Grozny...Mike, Duncan, Ed, and myself wanted to try a Captain Phillips type scenario with Tier 1's and Pirates...in my mind I envisioned Tier 1's or Coalition troops hitting the beach neutralizing Pirate infested fishing villes on the Somali coastline...

In Ed's mind, this meant making a 1/100 scale version of a container ship...get some pirates...get some Tier 1's...make a Pirate mothership, seriously...he scratchbuilt a mothership...


...and game some Phillips.  The name of the ship actually comes from our shared 'horrendous' experience/performance in the Grozny scenario from the FoF main rulebook...Ed and I were the Russians and we were most brutally spanked by hordes of RPG totting Chechens...hence, the SS Grozny was born.

With that in mind, I thought I would end my Cangames reporting with the last game of the convention that I played...Force on Force with a Captain Phillips inspired scenario.  Welcome to the SS Maersk Grozny...onto the game.

THE GAME

The Grozny is loaded deck heavy with a variety of containers and cargo...the ship steams a little to close to the Somali coast attracting the attention of fortune hunting Pirates.  Onboard the Grozny, we have the ships Captain, Engineer, 3-4 stands of crew (armed with clubs, pry-bars, etc), 2 stands of hired goons/mercenaries, and a Merc Captain.

The main issue with the Grozny is that...well...some of it's cargo is not quite on the up 'n up...it is carrying a missile launcher on the maindeck...a couple of specially marked containers...and has a couple of passengers in labcoats who speak with a thick authoritative accent...in the ships safe is approx. $200K and Pirates have been spotted...here in lies the scenario.

- The SS Grozny...you can see the missile launcher on top of the superstructure...it actually belongs with the containers on the maindeck -

A nice fat return pops on the Pirates radar...this can only mean one thing...a big, fat, sssslllooowwww, wealthy American ship is within range...4 would be Pirate kings...or princes jump in their fishing boats with their crew to intercept the target...

On the maindeck, a stand of Mercs keeps a watchful eye out for trouble...
The Mercs and various non-lethal measures are all that protects the ship and crew...clearly marked for your safety...the ship is equipped with a sonic array and water cannon.  Ed really did his research here and explained in some detail the countermeasures that realtime crews and ships are deploying in their fight against Pirates.

With Pirates spotted near the large beer cup, the Mercs get in position on the main deck to protect the cargo taking position near the humanitarian aid container and the missile launcher...gotta love irony...

The Pirates make their run in to the ship...the ships Captain and the Merc leader control the sonic wave mast and try to impede the attackers...one of the boats is pinned for the turn...

Which unfortunately doesn't last very long...sonic waves and water cannons have not done much to the Pirates and they space themselves out in prep for boarding.

The Merc Captain deploys some of the ships other defensive measures...6 stands of concertina wire spring up near the immediate threats forcing fishing boats to steer for the open spots at the starboard side and port (left) aft (back) side (side).


Pirates reach the side, roll to see if the ocean waves cause any men overboard...all told, IIRC 3-4 Pirates loose their footing and fall into the ocean...a couple of teams make it to the belowdecks and main deck...

...and quickly knock out the water cannon for a turn or 2...coincidentally, all of the figures come from 3 different collections and are all from the various Khurasan Miniatures lines...above are Somali Pirates on the left, and future war insurgents on the right...

Mike's Pirates elected to keep moving to the port side once the concertina wire popped up...his guys made a successful board, lost only 1 Pirate if I remember...made it to the aft bulkhead, spun the opening lever...and the Merc Captain sprung another non-lethal trap...this time, again a realworld countermeasure...a 50 gallon drum filled with liquid coloured goo that impedes movement and makes it hard to stay standing on the deck...in this case, the Pirate had to roll a D6 to see how many turns the stand was immobilized for...Mike rolled a 1...bugger.

Another Pirate crew make it to the water cannon, take some hits from the Merc stands...and successfully immobilize the cannon...it is now inop...

Mike's Pirates continue around the superstructure, find the ladders and start making their way to the bridge...at this time, the Captain makes the very brave move of running like a screaming baby from the bridge...you know, to distract the Pirates...

...and yells, "YOU'RE THE CAPTAIN NOW!!!" to every Pirate he sees...he jumps in the port side life boat...and f@#ks off...Yup...no kidding...the Captain bravely abdicated command...

The Pirate crew near the water cannon continue to push towards the Mercs near the cargo containers...pushing for the missile launcher...this will get big bucks and prestige from the Pirate who aspires to be King...

Another Pirate crew push from the front of the ship...

While this Pirate crew reach the launcher and the containers...Mike's Pirates successfully take the bridge...the Engineer successfully made it below decks to a secured panic room where he could still remotely operate ships secondary systems.

The call goes out to Coalition command ops..."The Grozny has fallen...Grozny has fallen"...on QRF standby, Coalition forces commit special ops troops to the Grozny.  To the bombastic sound of 'Cry of the Valkyrie', the Little Birds come in with Tier 1's...

Concurrently, once the bridge had fallen, the ships crew had a chance to hide out of sight...the Pirate commanders also had the chance to switch sides from Pirate to Tier 1'ers...we had an even split...2 Pirates stayed...2 crossed over and took command of a flight of Little Birds.  Coincidentally, while the Little Birds are from Battlefront's Vietnam range, the special ops dudes are all Khurasan Miniatures.

Each Spec Op commander had 2 x Little Birds for insertion; 7 x Tier 1 Operators and 1 sniper that could remain onboard a helo...the Pirates were D6 for Troop Quality, D8 for Morale; Tier 1's were D10 TQ/D10M...they came to play...

Tier 1's elect to put 2 birds forward and 2 aft...1 bird aft fast ropes 4 operators down to push to the bridge...

Their other Little Bird provides some sniper top cover...

The Pirate Commanders received some reinforcement and were able to deploy above or below deck...being below deck provided some additional cover from overhead...

With the top of the structure removed, you can see some crew in orange jumpsuits on the bridge, the Pirates leave behind 1 x gunman to maintain control and push the remainder towards the Tier 1's...a couple rounds of shooting and close assault leave the Spec Ops with 1 wounded...the Pirates are wiped out.
I don't have the picture, but at the front of the ship at the same time, their were also a couple rounds of close assault that DID NOT go so well for the Tier 1's...the Pirates were doing a very good job of rolling 4+ on D6's, while the Tier 1's were NOT rolling 4+ on D10's...every operator except 1 was killed...the Pirates elected to capture the wounded operator when they recognized his face from CNN and realized he was a Senator's son...

In the meantime...the back and forth at the front of the ship, expenditure of copious amounts of ammunition results in a stray round hitting a couple of the sea containers...just as the sound of hammering on the walls of a green sea container emblazoned with bright bio-hazard markings can be heard...the Engineer kills the lights from the panic room and plunges the ship into darkness...

Which allows hordes of ZOMBIES to spill from the damaged containers...allowing them to quickly move to the closest stands and engage in close assault...turns out that on the poorly filled out manifest...Mr Smith and Mr Cruise were actual Herr Doktor Schmidt unte Doktor Krause...they were taking a long covert trip to the United States along with a few containers of their 'research courtesy of Operation Paperclip...

We are now in an Ambush Z environment...the objective is to either:
RUN



or, like the Cap'n said "I wanna see some Zeke on the ground"


A stand of zombies make a food run towards the nearest Pirate stand...munch munch...



Coalition forces rush in an evac helo...Tier 1's at the back of the ship yell "get to the choppa" and evac from the ship...

At the front of the ship, the Pirates let their captive has his carbine back...shots ring out at the rushing zombies, another 4 stands spill out of container 9...IIRC, the Little Bird puts a few rounds into the Pirates trying to free their comrade, causes a couple of casualties...the Pirates fire at the zombies...Zeke is hitting the ground...


...the next round a couple of Zeke's reach the Pirate group and the Tier 1 survivor...I cannot remember if they survived or not...

...at this time, even the Pirate King is rushing in to evac his men with the mothership...
The last group of Pirates watches as their cohorts jump to the mothership...the Little Birds buzz around keeping their distance...the zombies rush their position smelling their fear...

The zombies easily jump up the containers reaching the survivors...
...and enjoy a light snack for their efforts easily overrunning the last Pirate stands...

At the rear of the SS Grozny...the choppa and Little Bird evac the Tier 1's...the ships crew beat feet towards the last life boat, successfully deploying before anyone gets nibbled

The last surviving Pirates make it off the ship...WTF just happened they all ask themselves...should've just grabbed the cash from the vault...

8 comments:

  1. Very nice, and original report, sounds like a great game!

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    1. Thanks Phil...Duncan and Ed put some great elements into their scenario building. Cheers.

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  2. Great pictures and report.

    I was not sure about the zombies when we were planning the game but it seemed to have worked out well!

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    1. I think it worked out great...it was a very fun element.

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  3. Now that was fun! Great setting (love your ship), and a fantastic twist in the tale.

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    1. Thank you Preacher...I keep thinking back on it and I really like the scenario especially with the various trigger points and the zombie twist!!

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  4. Holy CARP that looks like an AMAZING game - the boats - the scenario - just WOW!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Tim, not only is FoF great to play, but the scenarios it allows are seemingly endless. Ed and Duncan did a great job...again...

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