Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Call to Arms - Wellington 2013

It's nice to have such an understanding wife! I spent all of last weekend wargaming at our local show in Wellington and not a cross word from my other half! It doesn't get much better than that!

I'm not one for getting involved in competition games, partly because I'm a crap gamer but mostly because I find it brings out the worst in people.  Instead I like to get involved in some sort of display game. This invariably involves having boxes of new terrain taking up space in our garage and spending a small fortune on new lead.

This year I had the chance to do a demo using Skirmish Sangin.  Colin has been working on a World War 2 Supplement for the rules and that, coupled with the fact I'd just bought a heap of Western Desert figures proved too good a chance to miss.

El Adem

Together my son and I came up with a scenario involving an SAS raid on the Italian township of El Adem where they were holding two senior British officers as POW's.  The idea was  that the Brits had to get in and release the prisoners before the Germans arrived to take the prisoners away for interrogation. The British we're all classed as Elite while they Italians were either Novices or Average with

Axis troops defending

The game was set during the dawn hours with most of the Italians asleep except for a few sentries. These moved randomly until they managed to spot the enemy, at which point everyone woke up and the Cack hit the fan! I should also add that as well as 3 teams of SAS (12 in total) the Brits were beefed up by a couple of LRDG vehicles and a South African Armoured Car

David Stirling's team doing their best to sneak around without waking the sleeping Italians
 On day 1 Michael took charge of the SAS raiders while I controlled the Eyeties.  There were two ways for him to proceed. Either go steaming in all guns blazing and waken up the whole place, or take it easy and try to knife as many Italians as possible before they were spotted. Mike chose the latter and managed to clear one building of Italians before being spotted by a lucky sentry - It turned out to be not so lucky for said sentry as he immediately died in a hail of lead after raising the alarm.

The games up! LRDG gun it into town, all guns blazing!

Once the Italians got there act together things became a little harder for the Brits but, that being said, the casualty list for my Italians grew steadily while I only managed to seriously wound 1 of Mike's SAS guys! However the fact that the place was swarming with sleepy Italians was slowing Michael down quite significantly.

Team 2 Outflank the Italian positions
 He did manage to lay a Lewes Bomb on the Italian armoured car which exploded just as the crew charged out of the compound and started to mount up!

I had timetabled the Germans to arrive at the end of the first round of phases and this came all too soon for the SAS. It didn't help when the Gerrys brewed up the Marmon Herrington on their first move!

The Germans arrive on the scene

Anyway the game panned out with the few surviving Italians smuggling the 2 POW's to the Germans just as the SAS jeep hurtled around the corner to stop them.

So close but no Cigar for the Brits on day 1.

We reversed roles for the second day with me taking the Brits and Michael taking the Axis. We also gave the Germans a little less firepower by taking away one of there armoured cars. Unfortunately for the Brits, the game went the same way as day one. The Eyeties woke up a little too early for them and slowed up proceeding enough to let the Germans arrive on the scene to save the day. British casualties were also higher.

Wary German NCO sneaks around the courtyard

Bottom line is, the rules work well for WW2.  Watch the website for detail of when they go "live" I'd tweak the scenario a little by getting the Italians to set up without knowing which side the Brits are coming on from. What we both did was stash the prisoners in a house as far away from the British start line as possible. It made it just a little hard for the SAS.  For anyone that is interested, I'll post the scenario on the Skirmish Sangin Yahoo group 

I've been a regular at Call to Arms for a few years now but I thought the standard of the display games this year was particularly high.  My mate Dan put on an excellent Robin Hood game with some stunning terrain he has scratch built. Check out his Blog for more photos of this game:

Dan's scratch built Sherwood Castle

There was also a very nice Spanish Civil War game along with another two Skirmish Sangin games, one set in Mogadishu, the other in Afghanistan.

Spanish Civil War


  1. Nice looking game Raymond, you just need to add more to your blog on a more regular basis you slacker.