The Vikings’ Afghan Saga

A bit delayed, but the Legati’s final AAR from Williamsburg Muster, Saturday morning’s (bloody) Force on Force fight.

The scenario, a club favorite, involves a patrol of from B [Suffolk] Company,  2nd Royal Anglian Regiment  (“The Vikings”), travelling in Viking APCs getting caught in a nasty ambush in the city of Sangin, Helmand Province. In the two pre-convention playtests, we had two completely different results (major victories for both sides), so all in the club were quite anxious to see the results. Personally, after having no one show up for my previous two games run at the local cons, I was just hoping I could actually run a game….

Thankfully we did have a few show up and after a brief explanation of the basic rules, we got started. The scenario began with  the British taking a  first aid check for the 10 soldiers inside a Viking it by an AT RPG. From the first die rolls things were not going well for the Brits, and they found themselves with 2 KIA, 3 Seriously wounded and a handful of lightly wounded before the game even began.

The British patrol is ambushed

The British patrol is ambushed

The Taliban forces were think as thieves, but their first few ambushes met with mixed results. Fate continued to be against the British, though, as the began failing a series of  Troop Quality checks, especially when attempting to spot enemy troops). Most of these were on the roll of “1”s resulting in a series of rather unfortunate fog of war cards for the Coalition forces. In just a few rolls, the British found themselves dodging an old Soviet mine, a suspected IED and a meandering goatherder, shooting up an IED trigger man for another bomb and losing initiative indefinitely as a high-ranking officer back at headquarters became far too involved in the little engagement (the infamous “10,000-mile Screwdriver” card). Meanwhile, the only real, card-induced hindrance faced by the insurgents the entire game was the arrival of an Al-Jazeera news crew, who got themselves to the safety of a compound rather quickly.

The little luck the British troops had in the numerous firefights began to run out rather quickly. On the western side of the table, heavy fire (especially from the vehicle-mounted .30 cals) chased away an insurgent group and two DShK teams….though, as our club has learned in countless games, the latter perpetually “suck”. While these insurgents bolted and refused to rejoin the fray, they certainly did their part and inflicted a number of casualties on the dismounted troops. So many were hit that there were soon no unwounded men on that side of the field to even conduct first aid checks on the casualties.

Caught in the crossfire, the British patrol takes serious casualties

Caught in the crossfire, the British patrol takes serious casualties

Across the street, the heavy machine gun fire from the British Land Rovers took their toll, but the stalwart Taliban fighters did not budge and began returning deadly fire. In rapid succession, the insurgents incapacitated all of the .30 cal gunners in the Vikings and killed or seriously wounded the crews of both Land Rovers. One particularly determined group of Taliban fighters was reduced, at one point, to just three, leaderless fighters but held fast. Throughout the game, use of hidden movement in ratlines and tunnels and arrival of reinforcements at all the right places helped keep victory within the insurgent players’ grasp.

When our time slot came to a close, an assessment was made of the situation. Only four of the game’s eight turns had been completed, but over half of the British force was already killed or seriously wounded. Even if everything went in favor of the Coalition players, it was determined that the game could only end in Taliban victory, so we called the game.

Though it was a bloody contest, an enjoyable time was had by all and a few more gamers were introduced to Ambush Alley’s fantastic modern warfare rules.

Until next time, may your dice always roll well and happy gaming!


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