Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Firestorm Red Thunder Down Under

This Sunday 6 Aussie Team Yankee tragics gathered at the Hall of Heroes to stage a Firestorm RED THUNDER campaign. Yes, we know the campaign is already finished in Europe, but this is Down Under - we're always last to get the goodies, so we can take our own sweet time in taking part in the campaigns, right?

Players, L-R, were Bryan, Colin (Sov Mech), Daniel (NVA Tank), and Dan (US Armour). Bryan was the TO and planned our day to fit our limited numbers and time - we wanted to play the campaign out in an afternoon. He brought along his ANZAC Armoured Brigade: 

Reese, pictured below suitably armoured:

ran the unforgiving Soviet Tanks - well someone has to!

To provide Red/Blue balance, I left my usual Soviet Tanks behind and ran a Bundeswehr Panzer force - Jeez I might actually win a game!

So we picked 3 scenarios from Quick Missions: Recon in Force, Bypass, then Gauntlet.

My NATO Bundeswehr Pz Div 1 Force - all of 4 MBTs!

We confined ourselves to 60 point forces, no Fast Air or Aviation, and no AD assets. This doesn't represent a lot of teams if you are NATO! But a fair swarm if you are Soviet or the NVA der DDR!

Just a fraction of  Daniel's National Volks Armee! The SAMs are representing Spandrel ATGWs.

Bryan also put a lot of thought into arranging these 4 x 4 tables to represent distinct geographical zones across CENTAG and then NORTHAG. So most southerly, and hard up against the Inner German Border, we had our 'Fulda' table - very hilly and forested:

Then penetrating further into the decadent West, we had a built up prosperous industrial area; Frankfort or Dusseldorf say:

Moving North into the NORTHAG zone, the first table up against the iron curtain was our 'Luneberg' table - flat farmland, but well interspersed with farms and villages:

And our fourth table was further into the West, the NORTHAG backstop, Hanover or Gutersloh - still flat and open, but more built up:

After a quick briefing we started the first round, suitably, Recon in Force! Reese v Dan, Colin v Bryan, and I was up against Daniel - a bit of a grudge match this - Westies against Ossies! And so it proved - I was keen to race to the objective, the autobahn flyover, as attacker,

whilst Daniel knew his only hope of getting anywhere with his venerable T-55s was to get up close and personal and fire flanking shots! The resulting close-in knife fight melee on the bridge was deadly, but Daniel emerged the victor!

However NATO was victorious on the other 2 tables so it was only me that had let the side down! The line was holding for the present across much of the NORTHAG front, but in the CENTAG sector Daniel's East Germans had broken through to Fulda and Kassel!

The second round of games were the Bypass scenario, where you have to get as many of your platoons off the table from an objective. For some reason I'd played this scenario a few times so was reasonably confident, and indeed was able to claim victory by exiting 2 platoons - and making a mess of a Soviet tank company to boot - a NATO victory in NORTHAG!

Further south in the CENTAG AOR however US Armor were being pushed back into the Ruhr by Colin's Soviet mech horde. Fortunately, in the middle, Bryan's Aussies were able to hold the East German and retake the Hildesheim salient. So the front was bending, eastwards in the north, westwards in the South. Going due east to relieve Berlin was a no-brainer for the NATO team, but the Warsaw Pact players argued over going west for the bright lights of Paris, or pushing North to take Dusseldorf and Cologne...

In the third and final round, the scenario was Gauntlet, which I was none to familiar with. I was up against Colin's Soviet Motor Rifle horde - wall to wall BMP2s with Spandrel missiles,

whilst I had only 4 Leopard 2s and 2, yes 2, Milan firing posts that could hope to slow the Russian steamroller! Fortunately a quirk of the scenario meant that Colin was unable to darken the skies with ATGWs in the first turn, having counted as moved, and I was thus able to whizz a surviving Luchs A/C onto the objective in my second turn...

a cheezy win, but one that liberated Potsdam! Onto Berlin?

No - not quite yet! - on other tables once again Daniel's Ossies were doing well, able to manoeuvre skilfully to mass for the...

decisive Schwerpunkt almost at will, overwhelming the handful of US Armor...

The Red Tide of Soviet Armour started by was punching forward well on the approached to Gutersloh...

But were ground down by a dogged defence from the Aussie tankers once confined in the town...

With the UN imposed ceasefire mandated after round 3, the results were NATO 6: Warsaw Pact 3!

It was a great mini-competition and I think we were all impressed with the quick missions scenarios - 3 games in 4 hours, with ample time to yaffle a Hall of Heroes signature Bunker-Buster Burger! A fun-filled Sunday afternoon! 

Thanks to all the players for a very friendly and relaxed atmosphere, to Sara and the Hall of Heroes team for looking after us so well, and above all to Bryan for his good work making it all run so smoothly!


  1. Loads of fun!
    Great spirit in evidence too.

  2. Thanks mate - yes it was and yes there was! Cheers!

  3. Great looking table and nice mix of pictures!

    1. Thanks so much Phil - yes I have to make do when I'm playing and don't get time to take enough photos!

  4. Great little campaign there. 2018 is going to be my Team Yankee year. How long does a 60 point game take to play out?

  5. Thanks mate. About an hour, if you also cut out Air and Air Defence...