Skirmish Sangin: Downtown Ambush

Sadly, I didn’t take many pictures because we were too busy playing (and covering the table with paper) but I played my first game of Skirmish Sangin with one of the Brighton Warlords guys.

Tonight’s game saw the my British go up against his group of insurgents. Because of the models we had, we decided to play the Recon Patrol mission from the rulebook. 8 british soldiers (a mix of Elites, Veterans and Averages with the usual armaments) up against 8 insurgents (mixture of Veterans, Averages and Novices; weapons were two PKMs and a collection of AKs). I thought the sides seemed a little unbalanced until my opponent pointed out the victory conditions .

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The Brits get a small number of points for keeping their soldiers alive and wounding/killing enemies but the insurgents get a whopping 50 points per injured/killed British soldier.

As the game started, the two fireteams were on either side of the road moving towards the north. With a burst of machine gun fire, two insurgents groups sprung the ambush, one dead ahead and the other moving in from behind. Both sides started exchanging fire to little effect as one of the fireteams attempted to break through into a better position off the road.

The northern group’s machine gunner stepped round the corner and dumped a mag into Fire Team 1. Three of the team took hits but body armour did a good job of stopping two of the squadies going down, although the machine gunner took a light wound. Sadly the squad leader’s vest didn’t stop it and he took a major wound, dropping to the deck screaming in pain.

Fire Team 2’s grenadier, having seen a burst of fire down one soldier and injure another, turned to the northern group and launched off a 40mm round. It scattered but the insurgents were still in the damage zone. One explosion later and three of the insurgents were heavily wounded, two of them knocked unconscious.

As the fighting spread out, Fire Team 1 slowly managed to get off the street although their leader was still stuck in the open. The southern Insurgent group  slowly got closer.

As the fight started to wind down and a few of the injured insurgents started to retire off the battlefield, the veterans fighters with the MGs tried to get close to inflict a few more wounds. The rest of the insurgents were held at bay by Fireteam 2 who managed to down another enemy and limit the movement of another two. As one of the soldiers bounded out to started aiding the injured commander, the last PKM wielding bad guy appeared out of the dust and lit up the street with a mag dump.

The game ended with no casualties but three British soldiers were injured (the section leader was 1 hp away from death) giving the insurgents a solid 150 VPs. The Brits managed to remove three enemies from the board and wound a few more but more importantly the entire section was still alive giving them 220 points. A close win for the Brits!

The team was blooded but they survived their first contact with the local OPFOR.

Lessons for next time

I really enjoyed the game. Its a little intimidating with all the counters and stats you need to look at but once the play starts it really move. It has that feeling of being right in the middle of the firefight, making fast decisions that give you feedback pretty much instantly (or when the opposition next moves). The scenario was great fun but there are one or two things that really stood out.

  • MGs and grenade launchers were the main damage dealers in this game, with the standard assault rifles being more useful for suppression than actually dropping enemies.
  • Body armour was worth its weight in gold – seeing how fast the insurgents were going down was eye opening. Interested in seeing how the light armour works.
  • Infantry spacing. Keep soldiers at least 2″ spacing at all times – its enough to stop the LMGs from taking you down. Where the area allows, the full 5″ will reduce the chance of a grenade ripping the squad to pieces.
  • Read the mission description.
  • Print out character sheets, Quick Reference sheets and lots and lots of counters. I’m looking at writing a Skirmish Sangin tools app with army lists and shooting/spotting calculators but not sure how quickly it will be arriving. In the mean time, I need to buy some printer ink.

Coming soon: I swap sides and play my new band of insurgents against a squad of Australian infantry.


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