Thursday, May 23, 2013

Fighting the Desant - ArmA 2 Army of the Czech Republic - After Action Report

This is a fictional custom-made scenario of ArmA 2 featuring a platoon-sized Russian heliborne assault across a river. The Czech Army squad under my command is outnumbered and outgunned. For a detailed briefing of this mission please see my previous blog entry.

Under heavy pressure from the Russian heliborne troops, we were lucky to survive.

As mentioned in the briefing, I chose initial fighting positions almost at the eastern edge of Bystrica. I've never been any good calculating risk and I frequently gamble my most important assets. The Pandur II, equipped with an autocannon and ATGMs, is the chip I've shouldn't have tossed so early in the table of this poker hand. My excuse was the heavy Russian air cover ... It just precludes any type of vehicle movements and so I decided to maximize the chances of the Pandur II actually firing a shot. He was a goner anyway, even under the scrutiny of the most optimistic calculus.

This Russian attack helicopter was the first thing I saw in the skies of Bystrica.
A pair of Su-25s has been already circling around. I was in the eastmost street of Bystrica, which runs from north to south. My infantry is positioned in a way to have enfilade fields of fire on Russian troops crossing it.
A couple of minutes later, the Russian heliborne forces showed up.

The Pandur II started firing (red arrow) but I didn't hear any explosions. The Russians are landing on my left.

The Russian air support (most likely the attack helicopter) attacked the Pandur with low precision but with unusual ferocity.
My number 5 trooper sighted and engaged enemy infantry. I saw bullets pinging around his position and ordered him to fall back across the street. An enemy bullet impacted in his chest shortly thereafter. The smoke billow in the background is from the Pandur II, which was destroyed by enemy air. 
I quickly moved towards my machine gunner and positioned myself right behind him. He was firing through this keyhole into the enemy landing zone and by all means having a great time (note the closed caption comms from #3).
But yet again, enemy rounds started to find their way towards our position and we pulled back. That street in the background was our original position.

We started pulling back towards the western edge of Bystrica. The original wide deployment of my infantry didn't help for a tactical orderly move (#3 and me, shown in this pic, are separated from #6 and #7). Note the Russian Su-25 (red circle) still overflying the town.
Still waiting for #6 and #7 to rejoin, but moving west nonetheless. We kept bumping onto open spaces that would have been great places to set up defensive positions around. But enemy rounds systematically spoiled my intentions. Although I could not discern or engage the source of the enemy fire, it was clear the enemy was advancing west as fast as we were falling back and I didn't want to be encircled.
This small building was where I finally re-grouped all my men. A short stop was interrupted by enemy grenades (note the lingering smoke above the building). Almost everybody got injured by these grenades. I decided against a stand here. The enemy was very clever shooting explosive ordnance above our heads.
Number 3, visibly injured.
So we kept moving west, with the hopes of finding a good place to assemble a hasty defensive position. But we were running out of options ... And town.

The town ended and open terrain followed. My indecision to choose a place and stand a fight within the town has put my team in deep caca. I had to withdraw using the modest cover offered by the sloped river bank.
With two Su-25s still above our heads and in the open terrain west of Bystrica, I order my swivel north towards a patch of forest. In this picture, Bystrica is in the background. The small undulations of the terrain covered us from enemy observation.
A dilapidated gas station offered us some cover and allowed some time to patch ourselves up.
We were now some 1,000 meters west of Bystrica and my thoughts of counterattacking towards the town under the cover of the trees surrounding it were interrupted when 8+ Russian infantry men showed up. The enemy was alive, kicking and strong.

I decided to continue our withdrawal due west. The fight has been intense, the loses many. Maybe we didn't have a chance.
End of AAR.



Gowan James Ditchburn said...

Arma 2 is very unforgiving. if you give ground you'll lose it.

I am still struggling with the campaign. the fireworks mission has me stumped. the fact that the AI has no problems with their accuracy while I have to worry about my stance, wounds and how tired I am makes it even harder.

still I love the game. even if I am not very good. any tips you have would be very welcome.

anyway I do love this AAR you fought well and hard but as soon as your Pandur was gone that was it time to leave.

Chris said...

Every time I read one of your AARs about Arma2 it makes me want to buy the game.

JC said...

Hello James,
Don't worry, it will come to you. I think that the essence of tactical fighting in ArmA 2 is to pick your fights and to be very attentive of what's happening. The little clues, like the volume of enemy fire, are the most important.

Hi Chris,
Thanks! What do you play right now?


Gowan James Ditchburn said...

thanks for the advise. I may even go play some Arma 2 tonight. anyway great game and who doesn't like a bit of conventional warfare one in a while?

Gowan James Ditchburn said...

did you do the Czech campaign? I am stuck on the fireworks mission. and now it has gone to a different location. on the larger map, perhaps when I go again it will have changed but I am confused as to how to get the targeting and locating part right.

that what I really need help on.

JC said...

Hi Gowan,
Not very fond of the canned content of the whole ArmA series. I just make my own stuff. :)