Thursday, December 18, 2014

Battle Report - GDW's Striker

Commando raid on Divisional Headquarters

A buddy and I have begun a new Striker battle. The scenario is a commando raid. Side A's division HQ was supposed to be safe, far back from the front lines, but Side B's forces found it and have sent in a platoon-sized unit to knock it out and eliminate the General. Side A is of course trying to prevent this.

The HQ is the cluster of black rectangles on the left, with a trail around it and a road leading away over the stream. They have a cliff to the north and a river to the west (off the bottom of the picture), and a stream to the south, so it is reasonably well situated. Side B's force is currently sheltering in the grove of trees in the upper right, but several of side A's units can see them.

We wrapped up last night at the end of turn four. So far, side A has scored a few hits, and taken out two team leaders, while side B has hit only once. However, the team that took the hit failed its morale roll by 6, and so is routing off the field. Neither the General or the Lieutenant (platoon leader) will be likely to intercept them in time to halt their rout.

In the next turn or so, side B will probably set up its heavy machine gun and 10 cm recoilless rifle, out at the extreme range of side A's riflemen. As such, some of side A's forces will have to come out of cover to get better range on the heavy weapons.

Side A                Side B
39 men                      30 men
General (Elite)            Captain (Elite)
Lieutenant (Veteran)        2 NCOs (Elite)
6 Veterans                  7 Veterans
10 Regulars               12 Regulars
22 Recruits                8 Recruits

SA Rifles                 Auto rifles
LMG                      1HMG
Auto Rifles             1 10cm Recoilless Rifle
3cm Mines                rifle grenades
smoke grenades

Updates will be added as the game progresses.

This post was originally published in January 2014 
  Last night I accomplished a milestone in my gaming career - I began an actual Striker game with my two gamer friends. I presented a pretty basic scenario, designating the two sides as Americans and Nazis, reflecting the TL6 equipment allotted to both sides. Nazis held a hilltop overlooking a road, covering it with mortars to deny passage to American convoys. The American squads were tasked with kicking the Nazis off the hill so that their trucks could get through.

     Now, I've known about Striker, GDW's miniatures wargame for decades. A few years ago, I bought the BFB reprint of the Traveller Games, and I've designed some vehicles and even puttered around with playing the game solo but this was the first game I participated in that involved other people. I acted as referee, instead of playing a side. 

     We got started, and the Americans made some cautious moves towards the hill, keeping under the cover of a hill and some trees. Any Americans that ventured out into the open got shot up quickly. Once the Americans get into position to return fire, the Nazis will feel the weight of their superior numbers. 

A couple of observations:
  •  It remains to be seen if the scenario I devised was balanced in the abilities of the two sides. The defenders had the high ground and prepared fortifications, the attackers had numbers. 
  • Body armor is a very good thing. No one in this set up has any, and they're dropping like flies.
  • Note that heavy machine-guns have a set-up time. You can't have your MG squad run, fire, and then run again. 
  • The rule about who can fire after they've moved is confusing. I need to figure that out. 
  • On a 50 cm square map (the standard 'minimum' size) every stand is likely to be in effective range of every other stand. Stay under cover.
  • Despite beginning from zero (one player having never seen Striker before) we got through setting up the map, writing up the unit cards for both sides, and completing three rounds of combat in under two hours. This amounted to 90 seconds of 'game time'. So, despite the rules looking really complex, once you're in motion, it can go pretty quickly. 
  • Striker is fun!  We played somewhat loose with the rules to keep things moving, but tried to learn as we went. 

1 comment:

  1. Striker is a lot of fun, always used it in conjunction with Traveler rather than for historical games. The key to it, for me, was in the the rules about giving and modifying orders and how morale modifies unit behavior.