Action at Oberickelsheim - Part I - Preview -
I was going to paint up some Seleucid 15mm catafracts over the New Year break, but instead I've been creating a Modern Spearhead scenario. I think that's two years those damn catafracts have been sitting on my desk now, all undercoated with nowhere to go...
Now the reason I'm doing a full-blown scenario is because I'll be hosting not one but two gaming buddies come this Saturday, so I want to take advantage of some of the extra possibilities available when you have an umpire. Ancients battles are pretty-well much stand-up affairs, so an umpire isn't necessary, but modern warfare gaming is something that can benefit a lot from the players having incomplete information.
I've been beavering away on my terrain boards, and now have ten of them, so that's 40 square feet of table top. I struggle to fit just 6 in my "games" room, so putting 10 of them together requires me to take over our apartment's living room. "Coincidentally" the wife and kids are away at the in-laws until Monday... Here we see them put together, and with all the villages in place, but without any woods positioned yet (I have to make those up this evening; there may be a few more touches added to some boards, for example, along the stream banks). The complete Czechoslovakian 15th Motor Rifle Division will be commanded by Pat who'll be coming over from Kobe (I'll be assisting move the hordes...), and Aaron will be bringing up his American 1st Brigade of the 3rd Infantry Division from Iwade in Wakayama (Pat and I were both at Aaron's house last week playing Machiavelli).
Here's a reverse angle shot, showing the initial lines of advance for each force; white for the Americans, moving north; orange for the Czechoslovakians. moving west, so they are going to meet more or less at an angle rather than head-to-head. Each force will start with a single reconnaissance unit on table, and other units will be gradually fed into the conflict. Neither side knows the exact victory conditions of the other, although they should be able to extract some hints from their initial briefing information. Which I can't post here yet, lest my players read them, so you'll just have to remain in the dark about the background for the moment! The date is 17 October 1979, so it's M60s and M113s for the Americans, while the Czechoslovakians are stuck with towed AA guns on-table instead of missiles. But at least they now have some BVPs; the division having just ditched its OT-62s the previous year.