Sunday, 11 August 2013

10mm Rapid Fire

This Saturday I managed to get down to the Wargames Club in Law for the day (the first time in a lot of months). Unfortunately (for me) in July my son and his mother moved up north (a good move for him, and I am happy about that). This has left me with my weekends empty, as for the last 4 years I have had him staying most weekends.

I got a lift down to Law from 'Young' David, and he had mentioned there was going to be a Rapid Fire game I could join. Rapid fire isn't a game I have been keen on, based on playing it previously in 20mm. I wasn't very happy with the way firing was resolved, especially the way tank armour was the same from any angle other than the rear (not something very helpful when you play Allies vs the German Big Cats). Still, it was a WW2 wargame, and neither me nor David have our Flames of War stuff organized at the moment.

The guys had laid out a nice looking table (about 4" by 12" I think). The German forces were very sensibly picked without a big cat in sight - although as we were attacking the guys decided to play the German forces in deployment using 'blinds' and including dummy blinds. Something that worked really well and forced us as attackers to be much more careful and make use of our recon assets.

Here's a pic of the table and the allied objectives and attack routes.

Allied attack routes marked by blue arrows, top left dismounted infantry battalion, middle left 2 motorised infantry battalions and bottom left corner my mechanised infantry with tanks and Davids mechanised battalion with arty, A/T and recon.

The US objectives are marked by the orange hexagons on the map - namely the farm complex at the top, village in the middle, hilltop at the bottom and exit road on the right centre.

Myself and David took a bit longer to get into the fight due to the length of the road and out diagonal advance. 'Our' aka 'my' plan was to advance up the road, through the corn field in the centre and cut behind the village to secure the road - also hopefully helping the dismounted infantry attacking the village from the front.

Mechanised infantry heading towards the village. The Heavy weapons company is already on the hilltop - where they debus, get hit by artillery and route. The infantries recce jeep can be seen up by the village, about to get a burst of MG42 fire that puts it out of action. The infantries artillery hit the village and force the German infantry there to move from the building closest to the Y junction.

Mine and Davids half tracks move up the road, with M8 Greyhound units sniffing out the nearest blind counters - revealing them to be decoys or mine fields. Two companies of infantry in half tracks and three of my Shermans head for the hilltop. My infantry (closest to the camera) was to set up a base of fire at a hedge line, but that plan changed when I found out what the weapon ranges were. Instead they went to the forest at the bottom of the hill, while my infantry headed up the road towards the corn field and Davids secure the stone wall enclosure next to the road junction.

Another view of our column, with Davids M8 recce units checking out the forest (although I wanted to use infantry, David was a bit more gung ho). Davids leading infantry and heavy weapons broke off the the south of the road after the hedge to assault the stone enclosure, while my heavy weapons took to the forest. The Shermans in the column forms a echelon right line to the side of the road, clearing the way for my infantry M5's to advance up the road.

View of the enclosure and wheat field - you can see my recce jeep that David sends to it's doom at the T junction up ahead.

John P's dismounted infantry advancing, while his recce and tanks take the road towards the crossroads. His recce ran into some AA units and pulled back, and his tanks ended up crossing the hedges and coming around the east of the forest and clearing some pioneers.

The Allied infantry in the centre - the company on the hill top and the heavy weapons company at the base are about to get hit by artillery (spotted by German OP's in the tall building at the T junction). The heavy weapons company routes and leaves the table (chased by some 88 rounds from a Hornise hidden in the stone walled enclosure in the top right of the pic.

Hilltop almost clear - A Hornisse pops out and fires at Davids Greyhound, which destroys it with return fire. My heavy weapons head for the forest and Davids prepares to assault the walls to the left. Taking artillery fire called in by spotters (assumed to be in the building top right). The brown squares are minefields.

Fuller battlefield picture. The battle in the north grinds on. In the centre the infantry dismounts behind the hill and forms up for an attack on the village hidden from the German OP's.

Burning Hornisse - number 21 turned out to be a HMG team. The marker in the corner of the field at the top of the photo turned out to be a StuG.

Infantry forming up in the centre, ready to move on the town.

John P's recce leaves the table in route after a Nebelwerfer stonk took out their command units. Johns artillery is dismounted and his heavy weapons move to support the infantry advance.

John P's American infantry advancing. A Hornisse had moved round to support the German Infantry company in the farm. Besides Honrisse we also spotted some StuGs - but no turreted German AFV's.

Hornisse preparing to engage the Shermans. German Fallschirmjager hold the farm.

Thats more or less all the pictures I took - we made good progress, especially me and David. There would have been a bit of a scrappy duel between our Shermans and the Hornisse and StuG's in the south. The infantry fight in the north would have been scrappy and in the centre the infantry was suffering under artillery fire. Myself and David had secured the hill top, which was the only Allied objective secured before we ran out of time. I'm pretty sure my infantry and half tracks would have made it to the wheat field as well.

Lessons learnt were that the allies should have started deployed further onto the board, that the Blinds and Decoys really made it into a interesting tactical game and that I enjoy Rapid Fire more in 10mm than in 20mm.

Note sure that I will be collecting any more armies just yet though!


  1. It looks and reads like a very enjoyable game Jamie. Maybe you would enjoy 20mm rapid fire with practice? Or do you feel there isn't enough room for 20mm with longer ranges for vehicles? You done well with the pics as regarding the emerald green table. I always struggled with it.

  2. Thanks Paul - I'm happy to give it a bash in 20mm, I guess in 10mm I could just get over the issues I have with infantry vulnerability and lack of detail around armour facings and the likes.

    10mm also works better for me mentally with regards artillery and the likes. Especially on that size table. I think I could rationalise the fact 1 vehicle was a platoon and the likes much better than I can at bigger scales!


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