Alternative Cold War History 1994

Facebook | Twitter | Blog | Email us

Pf5_aj

Pacific Fury #5 – Shemya Shakedown

Playtest Report by AndrewJ June 2021

Comrades, to War!

HQ says to visit the Americans on Shemya, and rough them up a bit. So, off we go, all eight of our MiG-31s roaring away under beautiful clear auroral skies, and soon we're stomping all over the Eagles, who really can't do much against our splendid long-ranged missiles. It goes so well that the glory-hounds back at base decide they want in on the action too, and they send another four planes to join the fight.

Many Eagles go down in flames, and the new guys arrive in time to pick off an AWACS and some tankers too. Our friends in the Backfires use most of their big missiles to rip up the runway, plus a couple to hit the radar building. Now that the air is safe, our other best friends, the Bears and Badgers, turn on their radars and start hunting around the area. Wouldn't do for those imperialist dogs to sneak a warship in and try and engage us with SAMs! But nothing's there, so it's safe for the next step.

The bug-eyed boys in the recce Backfire start sniffing around the island, and they note that there's two more radars that the intel boys forgot to mention. Oh well, I guess the Americans get to watch us work. The recce plane cautiously descends a little lower, and a little lower, until one of those little snivellers down on the base takes a shot with a Stinger or two, but fortunately the long-ranged shots miss. Minimum safe altitude: 5 km!

So, the recce Backfire takes on the role of raid director, and starts loitering like a mega-FAC, while he calls in his bomber friends. First to arrive are the ones with dozens of little bombs. The idea is to use these to try and hit the soft mobile radars. Then, if we need to, we might be able to sneak in at low altitude when night comes again, and they can't see us coming. So the Backfires come in one at a time, dropping a few bombs at a time, before flying off and waiting for the raid director's assessment. 'Too long, comrade, aim shorter next time.' 'Off to the side, Alexei, remember the wind.' 'Are you still drunk Dmitry? The other radar!' Accuracy is rotten, but we've got plenty of bombs.

Eventually, the bombers get lucky, hitting both the radars, and then they turn their attention to the airfield facilities on the south side of the island. Strings of bombs fall all over the place, obtaining numerous precise hits on tussocks of grass, ponds, abandoned emplacements, and empty tarmac spaces. They also manage to destroy an AvGas facility and a hangar, set small smouldering fires on two more hangars, and poke a few fragment holes in the walls of another. A wandering stick of bombs manages to get a hidden Stinger too. Still, not a whole lot of return for the expenditure of 199 bombs.

Well, the Comrade Bomber Pilots go home, along with their raid director, and a new bunch arrive in the afternoon. These guys are carrying bigger 1500 kilo bombs, and they start doing a lot better. Five hangars, two AvGas facilities, the tower, and 2 parked tankers all get smashed up by the big weapons, and this raid director is a lot more cheerful than his morning friend. Hero of the Soviet Union for everybody!

Well, there's no Russian like a jealous grumbling Russian, and the first raid director comes back in the evening, and this time he's going to show them what's what! Now that it's night, and the radars are down, and the Stingers can't see, he sends two of his planes dashing in slightly lower (3,600m), making a radar-bombing test run on the cluster of barracks on the north side of the island. Well, Bozhe Moi, it turns out the little Stingers can see just fine, and they open fire with a blast of missiles, and riddle the wing of one of the Backfires with fragments. Sulkily, he calls off the plans for a low-level attack, and they all return to higher altitude.

The bombers manage to plaster 4 barracks blocks, plus a communications bunker, and they accidentally hit two of the hidden Stingers as well. Shemya is looking like a rubbled moonscape now, except for the north-west corner, near the Cobra Dane radar. There's still an AvGas facility, a barracks, and the police station there, but they're just too close to the radar to risk engaging, especially as we're dropping proper heavy Soviet-style large blast radius bombs now. The final bunch of bombers, toting whopping 3000 kg bombs, are sent to the opposite end of the island, to try and smash the ammo bunkers there. They toss a lot of dirt around, and crack some of the concrete, but the ammo's probably still intact.

The raid director goes home again. Of course he got the bad targets. It's not his fault his wife isn't the favorite neice of the doctor of a member of the Politbureau, is it? It's all rigged, you know that, right? Why, if he were back in Moscow right now...

Impressions

Sometimes it's fun just to stomp on the enemy! This quick and cheerful scenario certainly provides!