Sunday 28 January 2024

'O' Group: The Road To Jerusalem...

"Whatever happens I will try and be more diligent on the blogging front!" Famous last words eh? 

In my defence January has been very busy, especially with preparations for last weekend's Winter WonderLard IV, the Bristol Lardy Day were I was putting on 'The Road To Jerusalem', an 'O' Group participation game set in the Six Day/June War of 1967. This wasn't what I initially had planned (a Vietnam Easter Offensive tank battle using Charlie Don't Surf) but a lack of time to get everything ready for 'Nam scenery wise, and a change of scenario to one with infantry having an important role once I'd decided to head to the West Bank, meant a change of rules and the painting up of a pile of tanks and scenic items. 

I'll make an effort to post up some of the painting efforts over the next week but having had a snooze on the settee I thought a quick blog report on the day would not be amiss. The scenario was taken from the old Battlezones scenario booklet written by the late Bruce Rea-Taylor (of Challenger rules fame) and published in 1984. It is the first one in the booklet and is set in the West Bank with Israeli and Jordanian forces attempting to seize an important village on the Ramallah-Jerusalem road. Having both sides attacking makes for an interesting game for both sides.

Game One: Peregrine, Ben and Kev played the first game, Peregrine and Ben taking the Israelis, Kev the Jordanians.

The Jordanians were very bold and got infantry into the key village quickly...

Supporting them with M47 Patton armoured support.

Unfortunately they proved too tempting a compact target for the Israeli Air Force who were successfully called up and two Dassault MD.450 Ouragans screamed down on the Jordanian tanks and infantry...

With devastating results!

The losses inflicting two FUBARs on the Jordanians.

Despite this the battle went to the wire with the Israeli paras managing to evict the Jordanian infantry from of the village in a fierce hand to hand battle, winning the game for the IDF in the last turn!

Game Two: the afternoon saw Tim, Matt and Nick playing, Nick taking the Jordanians...

And quickly grasping the rules, which he had not played before, and employing some astute tactics!

The Jordanians swiftly occupied the village, helped by one Company of the IDF going hesitant at the wrong time!

And when the M51. Shermans got moving...

They found themselves outgunned by the Jordanians Pattons...

Right across the battlefield.

Air power almost won the day for the Israelis. After one failed attempt to call up an airstrike, a second attempt saw the IAF wipe out the two platoons of Jordanian infantry in the village!

The IDF sent their paras in to capture the vacated buildings but found themselves under a Jordanian artillery barrage and the casualties suffered saw them incur a fourth FUBAR token, handing victory to the forces of King Hussein!

After worrying most of the week before (as I hadn't played that many games of 'O' Group), both games went well and the players enjoyed them which was the aim. Whilst 'O' Group was written as an infantry game it does work well with tank battalions as the core force and also ports to post-WW2 conflicts quite nicely.