Caribbean Fury #4 – Show of Force
Playtest Report by AndrewJ Nov 2020
I started out by ferrying my Florida F-16s and a few tankers down to Martinique, to form a rapid-response and CAP force for the upcoming strike. While that was going on, a lone EP-3 started flying up and down the Venezuelan coast, to see what it could find. This provoked an escort from some Mirages, but no other hostile response, and the EP-3 was able to identify the patrolling frigates and plot the positions of some radars and the SAMs defending the Guiria naval base. Just after dusk, the SR-71 went zipping along the north coast, but didn’t find anything new. (Saves show the Blackbird was easily picked up on Venezuelan radar.)
The attack formed up off the coast of Guyana, outside Venezuelan radar cover, with F-16s loitering to cover a major tanker formation, where the F-117s all lined up to refuel. The attack went in through Guyanese airspace (although State denies this, if anyone bothers to ask), before turning and approaching the target from the SSE, as far from Venezuelan radars as possible. The B-2 went in first, hitting the airfield, and then the F-117s followed up, hoping that nothing survived on the ground to pop up and intercept them.
All seemed to go well. Although I wrecked two airliners parked near the Bears, and blew in the windows of many of the small hangars on the main flight line, none of them collapsed and fell over, so the Venezuelan government was able to grit its teeth and look the other way.
Timing is the main thing in this one, and planning the long flight paths so everything arrives at the right time can be a little tricky. (This scenario is the sort which could really shine with a mission planner function.) However, once the player gets things rolling, there’s not much in the way of resistance, unless he tries to go through the Venezuelan forces, rather than around them. (It seems only stealth aircraft trigger hostilities - a conventional incursion would be ignored unless it is observed to drop bombs?)
I was a bit surprised to see so many stealth aircraft present here. I had assumed all the F-117s would be in England, or headed there ASAP, to butt heads with the Pact in Europe. I can see the B-2s still being at home, although I wonder if they would all be sitting pad-ready with nukes. Still, this would be a strategically valuable outcome, stabilizing the southern flank, so it makes sense to use one.