rePost: Hot LZ p1

Thanks to the Armchair General reader who pointed out that a link to my old blog site had failed. Here is a repost for those of you trying to read the first part of Boots on the Ground

Dust. It was always dust. Dust in the eyes, dust in the clothes, dust in your kit, dust in your weapons….worst of all dust in the mechanics of your transportation.

The 6 of us were limping along in a transport chopper late afternoon from a rapid response support operation, part of a larger repression effort on the outskirts of town for Company F 23rd ID.

Fucking dust, I’m so sick of it. I’m tired of this war and I wanna go home. I thought aimlessly.

“ Hey LT you having a personal pity party up there” Alonzo shouted over the grinding roar of the chopper blades. ”You look so triste and rendido!” . Bentz beat me to the punch “ Shut your trap you bandana wearing wetback, of course he is having a pity party.”

We all laughed. Ahh God I love these guys. This is why we do what we do. That’s why I put up with the dust, and blood and worthless dying.

“Alonso boy you better strip that fiddy down right tonight no more jams like today” I said. He looked chagrined. But so he should, good men got hurt today, when Alonso the HWE specialist had jam. Dust. Dust. Dust.

We were almost back to Camp Kilo. Shit hole #5 that I had lived in with these pukes in the last year. Thru the haze I could see the camp coming into view. The engine was grinding like an old woman, please not today, lets get this old bucket back to Kilo then fail.

“RPG RPG RPG” Called Weston. “No,No, No!” I roared. Like that makes frigging difference…..

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Sept 11 BotG: Building 26. [narrative]

The sky threatened another searingly hot day for tomorrow. Dusk was approaching, as the Mosques called for prayer.
It was peaceful.

Weston, Bentz, Harris, Tony and 8’s were headed down the rubbish strewn 2nd Street. It had been several weeks since the cluster fuck helicopter crash.

We were back in a routine and rested up. Intel suggested a building just a few blocks away was being used for a staging area. Bravo was going to check it out.

Harris the new Heavy Weapons guy was quietly wise mouthing with 8’s. The two of them were funny guys. 8’s funny in the way that he liked to make origami out of dollar bills. 20’s if he could get them !

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Attrition Warfare and Satisfying Gaming

As I look back over my past year of gaming, I see a lot of tactical level stuff.

GBoH Title

GBoH,

Men of Iron

MoI,

WaW, TCS, Boots on the Ground and Combat Commander etc. From these experiences I have enjoyed immensely the stories that play out in my little mind. Some historical, some really too low level to be anything than a random skirmish (BotG/CC).

On the other hand some are so overwrought and painful to execute on that I spend more time being Platoon Ldr/CO Co, Bn leader that I am lost in the miasma of leadership rules conformity or historical exactitude to see the tactics for the tree. The play is there, the story is there, but its like drawing a tooth out to get there….with no anesthetic.

I find myself falling into commonalities, tricks that work, same old approach: ” Ahh yes, Ancients; All Cav flank, grind away, Center prepare to push up when I say…3…2…1 ! Bam battle over. Ahhh another featureless plain conquered. Bravo.”

Or, “Hmm its night, zero visibility, lets fire smoke, and sneak thru the trees to the edge and fire at  those guys….Whoot After 3 rounds of fire I suppressed them.  That’ll show ’em.”

WaW in action!

“Hey, Look a Soviet Tank- relax, fire the ATGM. Boom dead. Next…..”

CC:Europe

“Heh,heh, I have a special card to play, flip- boom u die.”

At what point my friends does the ‘reality’ of attrition based combat on the tactical scale become a grind and no longer a satisfying tactical puzzle, conundrum, problem to solve?

Good old fashion tactics old boy!

How do we measure that?

Is it the game system/mechanics behind the attrition fatigue?

At what point do we say – whoa Nelly, ease up. x # of rolls to kill a platoon/Squad/company/phalanx/legion/tribal unit thingy thing is enuff!

When is the “tally the DRMs, roll the dice, get a result, do a rout/morale/are we ok check, oops I’m stuck here for a turn or 3” process too much? 5 times a turn? 100 times a campaign? 1000 times in 2 days of game time?

Looking for this?

What are the most incremental, attrition (low increment losses based) simulations you play ?

Do you like these games? Why?

Is this what you want?

Is this what you expected?

How does one adapt ones thinking and enjoy this?  I don’t know if I can.  I want to experience and understand the fire and movement principles, the formation adjustment challenges, the risks of loss of cohesion, the risk of of lack of cover, attacking up hill in Column, the effective range of my slingshot,bow, rifles and MG’s. How will flanking help me here? Where should I place my MG’s? Who is most reliable in a crunch?

I want to be rewarded for the tactical effectiveness of my F&M.  How much pain do I want to endure to achieve that reward? Yeah. It all feels kind a painful at the moment.

Should I be playing Battalion/Regiment or Divisional Level instead?

Am I a tactical woosie?

Do I need a “strategic break”?

"Rescue Monk" AAR narrative

Alpha squad and a handful of GI’s hustled into the briefing room at 11PM

“Gents I will be brief. The insurgents have Monk in a house here” he said pointing to a map of the surrounding township. I need you men to insert yourselves and get his ass out before they cut his throat live on the internet. “ Said the camp commander.

“Now if I were a thinking man I’d use another adjective…But the best I can think of is these f#$%^ers need to die before Monk does. “ His face was lined with concern, knowing the chances of rescuing Monk were slim. “ What questions do we have? He said. “Work up your plan of approach and review with me”

The briefing finished 15 minutes later.

At 4AM Alpha had geared up. The wind was whipping hard outside the Camp Kilo. There would be no chopper insertion. This meant taking to the streets. The approach took them down some narrow streets in the pre dawn light. Then onto 1st Street and down more alley as they closed in on their objective.

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