Sunday, March 17, 2013

Tensions Flare in Timbogo

I ran a couple of games of Force on Force Saturday. Both were the same scenario from the new companion volume Classified: Special Operations Missions 1940–2010. The scenario (“Gone To Ground”) was one of the “generic scenarios” and I set it in my fictional African nation of Timbogo.

(I also got in a game of Ambush Z yesterday, but my camera batteries were dead and I was too busy keeping things going to really take any notes… so… no report of that game, sorry…)


Since colonial times there has been tension in what is now Timbogo between the majority (ostensibly Christian) Timbo peoples in the North and East of the country and the Bongogo peoples in the West and south who continue to practice their own indigenous religion.  

Tensions have flared in recent weeks and there have been rumours of genocide taking place in central Timbogo. A team of MSF doctors stationed in Timobogo and a visiting journalist, who have witnessed the atrocities firsthand, have been trying to get out of Timbogo. They finally made it aboard a helicopter that was to fly them out to nearby only to be forced down by gunfire as they approached the border.

A force of French Foreign Legionnaires stationed in and neighboring country was immediately dispatched to extract the French nationals. The team was able to reach the crash site but their transport helicopters were driven off by ground fire. The team did, however, locate the French civilians and holed up with them in a cluster of abandoned buildings along a lonely, dusty road, with the forces of the Federal Army of the Repuiblic of Timbogo (F.A.R.T.) and local militias closing in…


Duration: 6 turns
Initiative: French have initiative for the game
Fog of War: Determined normally by Reaction Tests
Table Size: ~3’x3’


The Team had to protect the civilians from the various Timbogan forces converging on the area. They had to hold on until the end of Turn Six when the French higher-ups would give the green light to some Close Air Support to clear a landing zone for the transport helicopters to pull them out.


In no French civilians were captured by the end of Turn Six the French team wins. Otherwise, they lose.            

Initiative Level: D10
Confidence Level: High
Supply Level: Normal
Body Armour: (+1D)
Troop Quality/Morale: D10/D10

French Forces – French Foreign Legion CSAR Team

1x Team Leader - FA-MAS
2x SAW-Gunners – Minimi
2x Grenadiers – FA-MAS with UGL
2x Riflemen - FA-MAS
2x Medic - FA-MAS
1x AT Gunner w/ ATGM (AP:4/AT:4 M)

5x French Civilians - Dependants


F.A.R.T. Forces win if the are able to capture one French civilian


Initiative Level: D8
Confidence Level: Confident
Supply Level: Normal
Body Armour: None
Troop Quality/Morale: D8/D8

F.A.R.T. Forces

Two militia teams and one regular army teams started on the table… more were coming…


As I mentioned I played the scenario twice today – once in the afternoon with the kids – to see how it would work out - and then again, later in the evening, with the regular Saturday evening crew.


Finnegan decided he’d like to play the African and Keira wanted to play the doctors…. After much explaining I think she finally clued into the fact that they would take no real part in the game and so she said she’d play the French with me…

(Remember: click on the pictures for a bigger version)

Timbogan Militia in a wadi approaching the southern end of the cluster of buildings – where the MSF doctors and reporter were holed up with four Legionnaires

F.A.R.T. Regulars approaching, through the scrapyard, from the east.

More Timbogan Militia approaching through another, heading to wards the north end of the French position.

The French positions in the buildings.

Again with the French positions – from the other end of town.

Keira inspecting our positions wondering when she might get to roll the dice and/or move the doctors.


WE decided to put all the French on overwatch for the first turn and see what the Timbogan forces might try to get up to…

The Militia at the north end of town started things up firing upon one of the French Fireteams.

The French, on overwatch, reacted and fired first taking down FOUR of the Militiamen. The Militiamen passed their morale and continued with their firing. They successfully caused one casualty! The French failed morale and were pinned. 

Next the F.A.R.T. Regulars in the scrap yard to the east opened fire on the same team of Legionnaires and took down the remaining two in the team!

AT the south end of town. Timbogan Militia fired on the French in the building with the Civilians. The French took down three of them, and the militia’s fire was entirely ineffective.


The medic in the South building dashed across to the Northeast building to see what was up with the team there and found the other medic to be seriously wounded and the other two team members lightly wounded.

Among the Timbogan forces the casualties had been a bit more severe – they’d suffered FOUR killed in action, two seriously wounded and only one was able to carry on with light wounds!?

There was a rumbling to the east and casting a glance that way the legionnaires spotted a BTR-60 rolling up the road towards their position!

The F.A.R.T. Regulars in the scrap yard fired on the Northeast building again and hit the medic as he was working on his fellow medic and hit both the others a second time!?

The two Timbogan Militia teams weren’t able to activate this turn due to their horrific casualties the previous turn.

The BTR-60 rolled up the road firing on the South building. The French AT gunner fired of a shot at the BTR-60 taking out it’s main gun! Before they were able to do this, however. Ricocheting 14.7mm shots hit the gas tank at the far end of town…

KA-BOOM! The gas tank went up and the team in the Northwest building had to flee into the adjacent building.


The French team fleeing the flaming wreckage of the gas tank dashed into the Northeast building and checked their fallen comrades. The Medic and grenadier were dead and the SAW gunner remained only lightly wounded (and the other medic was still in serious condition…).

A few more Militiamen arrived, infiltrating up the wadi to the north of town.

The Militia to the south of town exchanged fire with the French in the South building.

This apparently drew their attention away and allowed the BTR-60 to move up closer to the buildings, presumably to dismount the troops within(?) without being blown up the AT gunner (the exchange had made the French “fall off” overwatch).

Militia to the north of the buildings also fired on the Northeast building, but the fire from the Legionnaires took down the remaining two in the team! The newly arrived militia also poured fire into the Northeast building – which only served to draw the attention of the Legionnaires within, who shot two of that Militia team – causing them to fail morale!

Fire from the F.A.R.T. Regulars in the scrap yard took down ANOTHER TWO legionnaires in the Northeast building.


Checking their two downed comrades in the Northeast building. The Legionnaires found one to be seriously wounded and the other only lightly wounded and able to soldier on! Only two of the Timbogan Militiamen could be checked (as the other two were in a team that was now all down) and were found to be more or less fine. One was lightly wounded, the other had only had a bullet buzz past his ear and startle him, he was completely okay…

Yet another group of militia arrived at the northern wadi!

The only French able to take action were the ones with the civilians in the south building. They didn’t go on overwatch this turn but, rather, took the initiative. They split their fire – the AT gunner fired on the BTR-60 and the rest poured fire into the wadi to the south. 

BOOM! The AT-gunner scored a catastrophic kill on the BTR-60 lighting up the fuel and ammo the thing blew apart killing all inside! The rest of the Teams fire took down a militiaman in the Southern wadi.

The Three Legionnaires in the Northeast building exchanged fire with two groups of militiamen and the F.A.R.T. Regulars in the scrap yard. Mostly the fire was ineffective, though one militiaman in the Northern Wadi was shot.


We didn’t get to finish this turn (or the game for that matter) but we did find that the Timbogan militia had suffered two more serious injuries and another light wound and that another squad of F.A.R.T. Regulars arrived at the Southern Wadi….

Hard to tell which way this one could have gone. Finnegan wasn’t playing the Timbogans particularly aggressively so I doubt he would have been able to capture any of the French civilians in the next two turns…

In total, here are the casualties sustained:

French Foreign Legion
KIA: 2 (Medic and SAW-gunner)
Seriously Wounded: 2 (Medic and Grenadier)
Lightly Wounded: 2 (Saw Gunner and Grenadier)
Still Okay: 4 (Team Leader, 2 Riflemen, and SAW- Gunner) – plus all the French civilians!

F.A.R.T. Forces
KIA: 14!
Seriously Wounded: 4
Lightly Wounded: 3
Okay: I think there were nearly 20 still okay on the table when we had to call it quits….


Later in the evening Dave, Patrick and Rick popped by to play – what we hoped would be a quick game (as Dave and Patrick had to get up early and I had to leave around 10 to pick up the kids from the Ballet!). Dave decided to play the French and Rick and Patrick played the F.A.R.T. Forces.

Timbogan militia in the Southern Wadi with a French fire team in the building opposite.

Timbogan militia in the Northern Wadi, with French fire teams in both buildings and the French Civilians in one.

A view of the whole “village” (if we can call it that…) from the south


Once again the French had a murderous first round taking down five of the militiamen in the southern wadi and another five in the northern wadi. The Militias fire was completely ineffective.

The F.A.R.T. Regulars in the scrap yard, however charged out to the cover of the crates and junk near the Northeast building. In the dash one of their number fell. Once in position they poured fire into the building taking down three of the Legionnaires within and one of the French Civilians!?


Checking on all the wounded… The F.A.R.T. Regulars that had fallen had only tripped as he went over the wall under fire and was completely okay. The Militiamen, however, had suffered one killed in action, three seriously wounded and five lightly wounded (one other turned out to be totally fine…). Among the French , the civilian was totally fine – he’d been hit by a chunk of mudbrick flying off a wall that had taken a hit from a F.A.R.T.  RPG round. Two of the legionnaires were totally fine – both having taken hits in the equipment chest, the bullets were slowed enough as they went through magazines that they were totally stopped by their body armour! - but the third was pretty seriously wounded.

Reinforcements in the form of a F.A.R.T. Regular squad arrived…. But I don’t seem to have noted where!? I think it was the Southern wadi. They did exchange fire with some Legionnaires, and took a casualty for their troubles.

The other F.A.R.T. Regulars stormed into the Northeast building – taking the Legionnaires within, more or less, completely by surprise!?

The Legionnaires were wiped out (all three killed in action) and the Civilians captured!

Wow… on Turn Two… Things weren’t looking so good for the Legionnaires.


Things were looking even less good when the BTR-60 arrived… At least it was buttoned up.

The French, in desperation, started firing on the building with the French civilians – they even fired one of their ATGMs in there!? There was a whole pile of Timbogan reactions to this that mostly failed or were ineffective. The French fire caused five casualties – luckily none of the civilians were hit. The other French team actually tried to close assault into the building but there was some arguing amongst the team as to the sanity of such a move (failed TQ test) and they didn’t go in the end.

In the end phase the one team of Timbogans that didn’t react to the French fusillade earlier in the turn started trying to make their way towards the building – to back up their comrades and get those civilian captives away from the furious Legionnaires.

BOOM!! Though ineffective in trying to silence the French firing earlier in the turn, ricocheting shots from the 14.7mm gun on the BTR-60 hit the gas tank and it went up!


Checking their comrades the F.A.R.T. Regulars in the Northeast building found two had been killed, two were seriously injured, and one was able to get back up and pick up his rifle – though half his left ear was gone and he couldn’t seem to hear much (lightly wounded).

More F.A.R.T. Regulars arrived in the Wadi to the south..

The Legionnaires poured more fire into the Northeast building. This drew a lot of ineffective fire from the Timbogans, but the French fire was telling – all three remaining F.A.R.T. Regulars were shot in the exchange of fire.

Then came probably the most epic moment of the evening…. The other French team declared that they would split their fire – the AT gunner firing at the BTR-60, the other two at a group of F.A.R.T. Regulars in the wadi to the south of the building – then dash across the street to occupy the building with the French civilians in it (as it seemed there was no more fire coming from there…). The AT-gunner immobilized the BTR, but then turned to see his two comrades go down from the F.A.R.T. Regulars return fire…. So he shouldered his two remaining rockets, his FA-MAS, his comrades firearms (including a Minimi) and dragged the two of them across the street into the building, where he deposited his wounded comrades with the only other surviving (seriously wounded) legionnaire and started kicking rifles away from wounded F.A.R.T. Regulars and raging something terrifying that may have been French… but could just as easily have been Lithuanian. One of the surviving F.A.R.T. Regulars later swore his eyes glowed red “like the devil himself!”


It turns out the two Legionnaires were only lightly wounded so their comrade needn’t have treated them to roughly – dragging them across the street and all… Of the F.A.R.T. Regulars in the building two were seriously wounded and the other was totally unscathed, cowering in the corner…
Four more Timbogan militiamen arrived in the Northern wadi.

The Legionnaires remaining in the Southern building dashed across the street – firing at some militia in the open. This drew a lot of fire, which was, as usual,  mostly ineffective… The French took down two militiamen…

The team already in the building again split their fire between Timbogan Militiamen and the BTR. The AT gunner completely missed the BTR!? The other chaps took down another two militiamen. The F.A.R.T. Regulars in the BTR debussed and dashed for the cover of the scrap yard.


Checking their downed mates the Timbogan militia had suffered another seriously injured, two lightly injured and the other had only gotten a bunch of gravel in his eyes from bullets that had struck the ground directly in front of him – he was now back in the action.

Then another BTR-60 showed up…

Knowing that the rescue shoppers were on the way the Legionnaires concentrated on the Timbogans that were potentially close enough to close assault this turn – which turned out to be one group of militia… They were shot up pretty good.

In the return fire three Legionnaires were shot…

In the last turn the AT gunner used up his last rocket and blew up the newly arrived BTR-60 – not a catastrophic kill as in the last game – but a vehicle kill none the less – one of the crew and one of the infantryman inside were injured in the blast

Dave really pulled it out of the fire! At the end of the second turn we thought it was pretty much all over for the French... but thought we’d play it out for giggles… By the end I think Patrick was pretty much cheering for the French to get out.

I sort of lost track of a few of the casualties – situations where one trooper was lightly wounded, then later killed or seriously wounded… but I think this is pretty close:

French Foreign Legion
KIA: 3
Seriously Wounded: 3
Lightly Wounded: 3
Okay: 1
Only one of the ten came out unscathed….

F.A.R.T. Forces
KIA: 5
Seriously Wounded: 10
Lightly Wounded: 10
1 BTR destroyed, 1 BTR immobilized.

Of course as the ground support arrived to clear a way for the extraction helicopters there would have been many, many more Timbogan casualties…

I think I need more Africans… at least a few more with heavy weapons – I realized I have no militia-types with heavy weapons, and the regulars didn’t have very much either… I had so steal a few of my Generic Middle East Regulars to supply heavy weapons (especially all the RPGs!?) to the units. (Did anyone notice?).

I’d also like to track down some modern-ish African civilians.

This was a lot of fun. I need to play more.

Coming soon on Tim’s Miniature Wargaming Blog:

I have a feeling that VBL will get some paint on it this week as the French are likely to be drawn further into the conflict brewing in Timbogo… I should finish up the T-72s I have as well… or some zombies… or some terrain… something modern, anyway… 


  1. That was an awesome AAR! Correction, TWO awesome AARs!

  2. Great report(s)! I'm looking forwards to trying some of the 'Classified' missions myself