Sunday, October 28, 2012

Crisis Point 2013: Arctic Strike

Saturday 13th and Sunday 14th April 2013 and will see a follow up to last year's successful Crisis Point game when a number of SOTCW members and others played a massive, two day game of Cold War Commander.

Like last year's game, Crisis Point 2013 will take place at Dungworth Green Hall, Dungworth, near Sheffield.  This year the theme is Arctic Strike - the fighting in Northern Norway.  Here's the player briefing from Richard Phillips:

Players Briefing.
A Warsaw Pact assault on Norway based on The Third World War - The Untold Story by General Sir John Hackett.
Note: Originally it was planned to use Arctic Strike by Michael A Palmer as the basis for the scenario but due to the difficulty in players obtaining a copy we have decided to base the scenario on Chapter 12 - The Scandanavian Campaign from The Third World War - The Untold Story by General Sir John Hackett. The scenarios in both books are very similar and by using Hackett players will find it a lot easier to obtain a copy if they would like to do some background reading as copies are readily available from charity shops, second hand book shops etc. I picked up a hardback copy for 99p from a local charity shop. 
August 1985.
In Central Europe the Soviet advance continues. Significant gains have been made along the Dutch/West German border region with Russian armour crushing NATO west of the Maas along the A73. Further gains had had been made around Venlo with NATO supply lines cut. Dogged resistance by US troops around Duisberg continues to delay the advance across the Lippe.
The attention turns to the north as Warsaw Pact forces begin their assault on Fortress Norway in an attempt to secure the Northern Flank. The loss of Jutland on the first day of hostilities, and the consequential loss of Schleswig- Holstein shortly after was due to the combination of an intense chemical attack on Jutland and a coup de main by assault forces concealed in Soviet, East German and some ostensibly neutral merchant ships on passage through the Kattegat. These had made almost unopposed landings in Aarhus, Aalborg and Frederikshavn on Jutland.
Zealand had fallen after hard fighting between the reinforced Danish defence and a seaborne assault mounted from the western Baltic ports. Unexpectedly, Bornholm, its radar and radio resources smashed by air attack, had been left to its own devices until, almost at leisure, a Polish airborne division had fallen upon it.  
Many of the Allied aircraft in the BALTAP (Baltic Approaches) Tactical Air Force escaped to the Federal Republic of Germany or to Norway. A daring naval operation, covered by air, was mounted Commander, South Norway, to rescue some of the Danish and British troops from Zealand. Though four of the nine warships and transports were lost, the remainder returned intact to unload in the Oslo fiord. The aircraft and troops from BALTAP were absorbed as reinforcements to South Norway, or moved to reinforce the north.
Commander, North Norway, had been fighting an intense battle from the outset of the war when, as expected, almost all his early warning radars were destroyed and his airfields, ports and principal defence areas were raided frequently and heavily by aircraft based on the Kola Peninsula. The Soviet MRD which crossed the frontier at Kirkenes on 4 August made a more rapid advance than expected through extensive use of heliborne infantry and engineers supported by swarms of ground-attack aircraft, and by heavy and medium artillery firing at maximum ranges with a frequency and weight of shell that bewildered the light forces of Norwegian infantry. As they advanced, a Soviet airborne division captured Andoya and Evenes. A considerable amphibious force, judged to be carrying Soviet specialised naval assault infantry and a MRD, were observed on passage from Murmansk. A further four Soviet divisions were seen by Allied air reconnaissance to be crossing Finland towards southern Finnmark and eastern Troms counties. Tromso airfield was devastated. Only Bardufoss, so inaccessible among the surrounding mountains to the south of Tromso and well defended by air defence missiles since 1984, survived as an air base.
Somewhere across the seas the carriers of SACLANT's (Supreme Aliied Commander Atlantic's) Strike Fleet were active and mobile and must, surely, be moving sooner or later to relieve north Norway. 
An early decision was made to maintain Bardufoss as a base for reconnaissance to the east and a forward operating location for air defence fighters. The British Harriers, dislodged from Tromso, were kept in the north, flying from stretches of straight road and maintained from villages in the shadow of adjacent mountains. CINC-NORTH's Regional Air Commander directed American F-111's from England to attack Soviet air bases developing at Andoya and Evenes.
Evenes airfield was recaptured on 6 August by a Norwegian brigade and their comrades in the Allied Command Europe (ACE) Mobile Force, though about one-third of the Soviet parachutists escaped to the lines their compatriots had set up to cover Andoya. This was good news for Commander, North Norway, and CINC-NORTH, but each knew that bad news was on the doorstep. The first of the Soviet divisions crossing Finland was rapidly approaching the Norwegian frontier on the Finnish Wedge, with another immediately behind and the Soviet amphibious force had turned shoreward towards Bodo and had smashed a passage through the minefields to a landing near the airfield. Another Soviet MRD was deploying into Troms complemented by an Air Assault Brigade.
However there is a glimmer of hope for Norway, to the east SACLANT's Strike Fleet with USMC has moved through the Greenland-Iceland-UK gap. The Chief of the Norwegian Defence Staff has unconfirmed reports that the Finns are moving to assist NATO forces preparing to meet the Soviet forces advancing towards Lyngen Fiord through the Finnish Wedge and reports from Sweden have indicated that in an emergency meeting of the Council of State it has given the order to fight in association with NATO against a common enemy, and already Swedish armour has advanced up the E10 and crossed the border into Norway and are now moving into the area around Bjerkvik. 
Crisis Point 2013 - Arctic Strike will be fought over two days in Dungworth near Sheffield at the fantastic newly built Village Hall. Using the excellent Cold War Commander rules we plan to fight this scenario out to a conclusion using 4 large tables representing the main areas of conflict. 

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

SOTCW Participation Game this Summer

Phil Gray has organised a game for SOTCW to put on at British cons this summer.  I shall certainly be helping out at Triples.  Come along, it should be fun:

Operation Kutusov  - A SoTCW participation game

Based on an incident recounted in the book "Panzer Destroyer - a Red Army
tank commander's memoir" by Vasily Krysov, the SoTCW offers you the chance
to help run/ take part in the Soviet counter-strike against Model's Northern
pincer at Kursk.

The players take the part of Soviet platoon commanders leading T34-76 or
Su-122s into battle against a makeshift German defence.  There will be
supporting infantry, artillery and airpower, but these are the umpires to
command,  as are the Germans. The game is designed so that players can walk
up and take part at any point, with a personal mission to achieve. The rules
are based on Crusader's "Rate of Fire" set.

The game showcases the revamped WW2 range from the Curteys of 1st Corps and
some new buildings from Dave Bodley  of Grand Manner, and will be presented
at Salute, Triples, Partizan and Claymore as well as Derby in 2012.

To take part, leave a comment :-)

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Airfield Building

This is a MGB resin model that came as part of an airfield set with revetted bays, stores, and a base with a Jeep and a towed runway controller's van (the latter now serving as a Soviet command element).

It's in 1/300th scale and will serve as the control tower of the civilian airfield south of the Lippe.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Big Box of Goodies

I managed to get over to Steve (The Baggage Train)  Oates’s house on Saturday evening to collect the Arnhem Bridge model that Steve has kindly donated to the SOTCW for use in the Crisis Point game and beyond. 
Steve very kindly provided me with a huge box of goodies:

Quite apart from the bridge:

...which is going to be a bit of a challenge, Steve also very kindly provided a whole load of Atlantic Wall style bunkers and command positions:

Oh, and another bridge!

I don’t see why the NATO forces shouldn’t reuse old Westwall fortifications so some of these will be used in the big game.  Others will see the light of day in future SOTCW demo games.
I can’t recommend Steve’s stuff too highly.  Check it out at The Baggage Train.

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Crisis Point

Planning for the big Cold War Commander game in Sheffield (21 and 22 April 2012) is going really well.  The game has now acquired a title, "Crisis Point", reflecting the fact that a victory for either side here will almost certainly determine the outcome of the war in Germany.

For details see the Yahoo group here.