I have decided that I'm not much of a fan of modern gaming (meaning not the act of wargaming today...rather the genre of modern gaming...post WWII). And I've also decided that I'm not a fan of micro-armour anymore. The second is much easier to explain. I'm just having trouble distinguishing the models anymore. I now have to wear glasses for painting and reading small print and seeing any detail on micro-armour is far beyond my abilities these days. I can still appreciate the quality of the models (especially the GHQ variety) but if I have to put on my specs every time I bend close over the table, well that just ain't gonna' happen...normally. My first statement is a little more difficult to explain but in a nutshell, it's too damn complicated. Maybe it's my growing need for abstraction in my rules and games and my abhorrence of too much detail. Maybe it's my diminishing capacity to multi-task. It could also be that I'm not a science kinda' guy (and you need to be able to understand physics and mathematics for modern gaming). Of course, it could just be that I'm lazy!
Having said all that, I played in a 1/285 modern game on Friday at MIGS, our local club. Normally I wouldn't fight the traffic on a Friday but my son was in town and I have few chances to game with him anymore so I took the opportunity. Michael has been developing a set of rules for WWII to modern gaming over the last couple of years called "C3I." He was using this game as an opportunity to play-test the rules with several of the club members. He's done a lot of work with the rules but, I must admit, they are not my cup of tea. I am not a big fan of I-GO-U-GO systems and even less enamoured of details. I fully understand that this doesn't make rules that have these qualities good or bad. They're just not for me! Judging from the enthusiasm and enjoyment of the other players, however, I'd say that the rules are well-received.
The major town on the board. Most of these are commercially-available resin models with scratch-built bases and custom made roads and streets (even with light standards!).
The game saw a small German force pitted against a Soviet force of three armoured battalions (with T-80s) and three mechanized infantry battalions. There were also various support units like artillery and anti-aircraft. I won't even try and list any of the vehicle types since it would only serve to illustrate how ignorant I am about this gaming genre. I've included a few photos here to show how great a job Michael has done with his collection and especially with the terrain. He's been working hard to make it look good and he's succeeded!
Part of the German force deployed and waiting. These scary-looking beasts received a lot of artillery fire at the beginning of the game and soon ceased to exist.
German infantry deployed, ready to pound the Soviet armour with TOWs. I've also decided that I don't like TOWs (very nasty!).
The Soviet right wing prepares to assault the town. Unfortunately this came to naught when early on in the attack the Soviet brigade commander was snuffed. The assault quickly slowed to a crawl.
The Soviet left wing after running into a hailstorm of TOWs. Ouch! The smoke markers indicate brewed up vehicles and the blue smoke is a targeting marker (clever).