Sabre Squadron Cold War Moderns Game Report
This was about our 5th game of Sabre Squadron and we are finding the games are becoming more fluid and tougher tactically. Both of us are ex WRG rules players so we are finding that there is
years and years of unlearning and assumptions to get rid of. In the last couple games and especially this one we have begun to alter our tactics.
We choose to use 1300pts which doesn't give you a lot of stuff if you are using 80s armies. My British army had the following:- 1 understrength Tank Squadron with 10 Chieftain Mk10
1 FV432 Infantry platoon
1 platoon of Strikers
1 section of 2 Scimitars
The Soviet player had:-
1 full BMP2 Mechanised infantry company
1 platoon of T-80BV
Offboard 120mm Mortar battery (I think)
After the last game I was keen to mix up the terrain and create some new pieces as the games were beginning to look too similar! Most of my terrain was designed for WRG and those rules have very strict guidelines on the size and shape of terrain pieces. However in the real world those guidleines do not exist. I have the old TTG Battlezones scenarios book and the XXX scenarios, both of are execellent and which have quite large terrain pieces in their scenarios. So for this game I completed some new hills and forests.
Table layout and game setup
After laying down the terrain in a semi-mutual way, we started defining the terrain (one difference from the rules is we class towns and built up areas as Open woods) and setting down 3 objectives. One objective was placed on each opponent’s side of the table and the last objective was placed on the main crossroads by mutual agreement. After that we rolled to see who was the attacker, and who was the defender. The British ended up being Defender and deployed a platoon of Chieftains onto the table.
The Soviet player went first and drove onto the table and unloaded most of his infantry. The platoon of T-80s drove on and took a shot at the Chieftains and destroyed one! However the Soviet player forgot to Transit and moved at normal cross country speed. In the British players first turn they drove on with most units transiting. The FV432s went at full speed on the road speed towards the center objective. Meanwhile the Chieftains decided it was better to live to fight another day and drove around the hill out of sight of the T-80s.
The second turn was quiet with both sides advancing into a position where they could see the enemy. The Soviet player tried to call in artillery on FV432s but was unsuccessful. The T-80s decided not to stay on the left flank with Striker advancing towards them and moved around behind the hill.
Third turn - the action heats up
The third turn saw the Soviet BMPs near the forest shot up a FV432 and none of the passengers managed to escape. The British player tried to return fire with a Chieftain but missed. Meanwhile another Chieftain platoon had got into a hull down position and shot and destroyed a empty BMP2. The FV432s realised that they were in a sticky situation and decided to press forward towards the objective, and the cover of the forest.
Lots of action
The next turn saw the Soviets use one of their BMPs at the back of the town to pop out and destroyed an empty FV432 with its 30mm autocannon. Another BMP fired its AT-5 Spandrel missile and destroy a HQ Chieftain, while one of the hull down Chieftains was also knocked out. The British turn was less effective which their forces reeling for the fire. However the Scimitar had slowly been sneaking around the edge of a hill and know had a clear shot on the BMP2 by the center forest. Their 30mm cannon managed to destroy one BMP while the other 2 were knocked out from the hull down Chieftains. This forced a morale check on the Soviet BMP platoon and they failed dropping one level.
The fifth turn was a little quieter with BMP at the back shooting wat the British infantry suppressing 1 base and neutralising another. Also a couple of BMPs in the town had moved forward and took a shot at the FV432 and destroyed one. This was followed up with a Soviet infantry assault through the forest into the FV432 platoon. This was repelled (just) and that was probably due to the British infantry being in a reasonably healthy state and passing all their morale tests. Both sides lost 1 base and a Soviet base was neutralised.
More fifth turn action
In the British turn they counter attacked and destroyed xx number of bases. The Soviet morale dropped another level and losses had now exceeded 50%. The British Strikers which had scared off the T80s earlier had finally moved into a better position (after capturing the objective) and had a cross table shot on the BMPs. They fired and destroyed XX BMPs
At this point in the game we were running out of time. The British player had 2 of the 3 objectives but would have struggled to eject other 2 Soviet Infantry platoons from the 3rd objective. The Soviet player was in a good position but they would have found it difficult to recapture the middle objective, so we called it a close British victory.
This was probably the best game we have had so far with these rules. There was no distractions and this allowed us to get through the turns and there was a lot more thought put into game tactics, which made it a challenging game. The close assault was the first time we tried it under the rules and it was simple to follow and it "felt right". Comparing it to WRG Moderns it was light years ahead in playability.
More game photos
One of the objectives - the Town
T-80s Tanks looming.
Turn 1 - Chieftain HQ section with a FV432 platoon in the background advancing down the road.
Turn 1 - BMP2s advancing on from the opposite side of the table.
Strikers with the 3rd objective (the farm) in the background.
Turn 3 - A Chieftain platoon has got into a hull down position and shot and destroyed a BMP2.