Category Archives: AARs

Wargame: Red Dragon! Hell in a very small place

Wargame Red Dragon

When I was a little boy in the early 1980s, I’d play with boxes full of toy soldiers, tanks, airplanes and helicopters. The living room floor would turn into the North German Plain or the jungles of Vietnam.  Squadrons of fighters would streak through the kitchen and merge into deadly combat somewhere in the airspace above the dining room table.  The family room would be forcibly occupied in order to prepare defensive lines that would preserve democracy and the American way until my mom called me away for dinner.  In an era when there were no computers in the home for the most part and electronic gaming was in its infancy, the only thing standing between freedom and communist global insurgency was me and my plastic Marine Corps.  My toy soldiers are all gone now, so when I want to play out some Cold War fantasy I power up my computer and launch one of Eugen System’s excellent games in the Wargame series. Lately, this has been Red Dragon.

Wargame Red Dragon

By: Craig Handler

Grogheads AAR – Combat Mission Black Sea!

combat mission black sea steam

 

When in 2009 Battlefront began to develop Black Sea, the next title in the Combat Mission series involving a modern fictional Russian invasion of the Ukraine, they couldn’t possibly have imagined that in less than five short years, Russian combat units would be storming across the border into Ukrainian territory making the scenario much less of a hypothetical.  Despite exerting every effort to avoid the portrayal of an ongoing, undecided conflict, it is nearly impossible to avoid comparisons to the violent confrontation that is still raging across the Donbass.  

Combat Mission Black Sea (“CMBS”) is described by Battlefront as a “military grade simulation” depicting a fictional armed conflict between Russia and Ukraine which results in open combat in the summer of 2017. “As Russian forces move into Ukrainian territory the Ukrainians do their best to defend their country against a numerically and technologically superior adversary. Events surrounding the invasion cause NATO to send its advanced rapid deployment forces to check the Russian advance. A brutal scenario, for sure, but one which allows you to get a glimpse of what full spectrum contemporary near-peer tactical warfare is all about.”

Although CMBS has been available directly from Battlefront since November 2014, it has recently been released on Steam in partnership with Slitherine Ltd., significantly broadening its audience and reinvigorating interest in the source material.  So, grab your AK and join Grogheads on the frontline of this brutal modern confrontation as Russian and Ukrainian mechanized troops clash over a small government complex.  Ura!!!

By: Craig Handler

combat mission black sea steam

Consulate Crisis! Part 6 – A Command: Modern Air Naval Operations and Combat Mission Shock Force AAR

BlackGIs afghan marine patrol in hit

He’s been off safeguarding freedom and democracy, but IICptMillerII is back, and he is ready to pick up his exciting cross-game AAR right where it left off! Don’t miss a beat of the pulse-pounding action!

BlackGIs afghan marine patrol in hit

By: IICptMillerII,

Civil War II – An After Action Report! Part 4

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By August, I am becoming  concerned with how fast the CSA is mobilizing.  Its army is now at 82% of the US army strength.  While I am concentrating on building up the Union navy, I cannot afford to have an almost equal CSA army and led by superior generals.  My other concern is that the Union artillery corps appears underdeveloped, with many of my units lacking artillery support.  Consequentially, I am going to slow down the naval build up, and try to increase the rate of the Union army’s build up. Note: Historically the Union and Confederate were approximately the same size at this point in the war, but the Union army subsequently grew much larger as the war progressed.  According to the National Park Service,  “In July 1861, the two armies were nearly equal in strength with less than 200,000 soldiers on each side; however at the peak of troop strength in 1863, Union soldiers outnumbered Confederate soldiers by a ratio of 2 to 1. The size of Union forces in January 1863 totaled over 600,000. Two years later, that number had not changed dramatically for the Union Army but had dropped to about 200,000 for the Confederate Army.”

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By: Tripoli,

Civil War II – An After Action Report! Part 3

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1-15 June  1861 (Turn 5)

Summer brings with it clear weather.  Normally, this would be an excellent time for an offensive-If the Union army was ready.  However, it is not.  With the concentration on building up the navy, the Union has only 1.3 times the Confederate land power, a ratio that is insufficient to engage in significant offensive action.    Also, many of the Union troops are untrained.  The Union also lacks sufficient artillery and supply wagons to venture deep into the Confederacy.   And most critically, the Union officer corps is insufficient for a large offensive operation.  There are too few officers to command the units I am building and most of them lack the strategic rating needed to reliably move when directed, or adequately command the units they are assigned.  This means that any Union offensive will be disjointed, with some units moving, while others stay in place.  Further, most formations will be operating at a significant movement and combat penalty, since my officer pool has few officers that can command more than two brigades without penalty.  Thus, any offensive action will have to be made en masse, with a large body of division-sized units marching short distances to ensure that some of them reach the objectives.  This situation will improve with the addition of divisions in the Union TO&E in October and corps in March 1862.  However, until these are available the Union is significantly hamstrung in its offensive capability.

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By: Tripoli,