OILCO hired mercenary firm Extremis Operations Group (EOG) operatives based on their past success in rescuing an endangered executive in Nigeria as the Nigerian Army and Boko Haram were waging war. The plan was to ambush a convoy escorting Colonel Felix Masondo on a journey in the lightly-forested grasslands to the West of the capitol. Unfortunately, the EOG team didn't have time to set in an IED or Claymore Mine to knock out the first vehicle. They would have to use small arms and the one operative who had an M203 grenade launcher might also be able to do it single-handedly.
I played this scenario with the Savage Worlds Showdown tabletop miniature rules, on terrain strongly resembling that of the fantasy scenario I played last weekend, where forest rebels sought to kidnap the King's taxman cousin, only to see the kidnapping target felled by a stray arrow. Can I escape this trap of trying to kidnap someone, only to end up shooting them in the face? We'll see...
Off to the ambush! Below, Colonel Masondo's convoy trundles slowly on the rutted, uneven terrain of a soggy dirt road.
1. Well, this went exactly how I didn't want it to happen. The same way last week's game went, where a planned kidnapping resulted in the death of the kidnapping target. Not sure how I break this curse, but the dice have been harsh on VIPs lately.
2. I'm still working out the kinks on the Showdown initiative system, which is card-based. It definitely gives an order to who moves, first to last, but it's randomized unless you pay for a unit/character trait that permits drawing two cards and picking the best one, or getting a re-draw if below a certain level. It certainly creates a feeling of a fog of war, but I don't think it takes into account the effects of leadership and decision cycle advantages that make aggressive leaders, fighters, and units successful. More to follow as I continue to develop my own rules that take this into account.
3. I screwed up the armor protection in this game. I used the modern light armor instead of the heavy armor, which does have the ability to stop 5.56mm and 7.62mm rounds. I should have priced out that body armor for equipped minis, and rolled to see if it stopped covered hits (percentage of body protected). Instead, I had the effect of pistol body armor in a rifle-equipped battlefield. Having said that, the Showdown system seems to be a pretty solid universal skirmish system, which is quite extraordinary.
4. Well, this was a hell of a start to a campaign. I'll take a hard look at OILCO options for follow-on operations after this initial failure.