Sunday, September 21, 2008

Hubcon 2008

The wargamers in Hattiesburg, Mississippi put on a small regional convention in September of every year. Hattiesburg is known as the "Hub City" for all its intersecting roads and railroads so the convention is called Hubcon. This year a large contingent of 11 Jackson Gamers descended on the city to play games, renew friendships, and buy wargaming stuff.

Here a number of the Jackson Gamers gather around a 25mm Franco-Prussian game run by Robert Whitfield, a former resident of Jackson and now living in Hattiesburg.

Other Jackson Gamers take part in a WW2 game using the Command Decision rules.

Jay Stribling, one of the charter members of the Jackson Gamers, ponders his next move in a WW2 Memoir 44 game.

Hilton McManus (on right), a New Orleans area wargamer and a sparkplug behind the Bayou Wars convention, looks over his options in the Field of Glory tournament.

Three of the four Russian commanders (Robert Whitfield, Jay Stribling, and Steve Wirth; your photographer was the fourth) plan their defense of Mother Russia against the French in a 15mm Napoleonic game set during Napoleon's 1812 invasion. We used Travis Melton's set of Napoleonic rules, Sabers & Muskets, which have been designed for convention play.

The four French commanders (Joshua Brown and his dad Mark, Billy Middleton, and Phil Young) plot their attacks on the Russian defenders. Travis' rules are simple and easy to pick-up, perfect for a convention.

From all appearances, a good time was had by all. Our thanks to Tim Broome and the other Hattiesburg gamers for an enjoyable day!

Jim Pitts, your friendly narrator and photographer

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

I just finished a very good read on THE World War I naval battle: "Jutland - The German Perspective" by V.E. Tarrant.

Previous books that I found valuable in the same Genre were "Castles of Steel" by Robert K. Massie and "The Great War at Sea 1914-1918" by Richard Hough.

No one is apparently as interested in WWI but I thought that I would just inflict this on all of this blog's readers.


Saturday, September 6, 2008

Modern Afghan Game, Sep. 6, 2008

Game Master -- Ed Sansing

Coalition -- Jim Pitts (force command, sniper, Scottish platoon)
Sean Pitts (Royal Marine troop, mortar support)
Bill Hamilton (American infantry platoon, machine gun support)

Afghans -- Phil Young (force command, two fighter sections)
Ed Sansing (headquarters team, one fighter section, machine gun team)

A Scottish squad advances over a scrubby Afghan hill on its way to Jellybad.
(Note: Click on pictures to see a larger image.)

The Coalition force's mission was to search the village of Jellybad and find and destroy the opium cache of the local warlord. The local warlord's mission was, of course, to prevent the infidels from finding and destroying his opium.

Force Strengths:

Coalition -- one Royal Marine headquarters team (5, including a medic)
two Royal Marine squads (8 each)
one Royal Marine light mortar with crew (3)
two Scottish squads (8 each)
two American infantry squads (9 each)
two American light machine gun teams (3 each)

Afghan -- one headquarters team (5)
three fighter sections (12 each)
one light machine gun team (3)

After deploying a smoke screen, the Scots rush towards cover, dragging three of their wounded. Another Scottish squad is cheering them on from behind one of the buildings in Jellybad. In the distance is one of the Royal Marine squads. The Americans came over the big hill in the background and assaulted Jellybad from that side. Unfortunately the war correspondent was with the Scots and did not get any coverage of the Americans.

While one Afghan section puts down long-range covering fire from a ridge outside Jellybad, another section occupies two of the buildings on the town square. Most of the Scottish casualties came from the Afghans on the ridge.

Looking down into the town square, you can see the garage across the square where the opium was hidden with the warlord's command team hiding behind it. A wounded Afghan from the opium guard section lies in the square. You can also get a better view of the other building occupied by part of the Afghan force.

After gaining cover behind this building, the Scottish squad that took the most casualties couldn't be budged from its cover. They were recruits newly arrived in country. The red marker indicates that they are "broken." The Royal Marine medic is helping tend to their wounded (and in fact patched two of them up sufficiently to allow them to return to action. Immediately behind them is one of the two Royal Marine squads, with the second one in the building across the way.

Unfortunately the war correspondent's camera was up to full working order (batteries were very low) and these were all the photographs taken.

So who won? The Coalition forces killed almost all the Afghan fighters, including the warlord himself, captured two of the fighters, and found and destroyed the opium cache. This was accomplished with the loss of one Scot killed and three Scots and one Royal Marine wounded. The Americans suffered minimal casualties of one man slightly wounded and returned to action.