Sunday, March 6, 2011

Tourists of Duty or My Time in Vietnam

Before he left Halifax, Rob Swan ran a fun series of Vietnam war games. I think they were partly inspired by the Tour of Duty TV series and were mainly played with the Gi'ac My rule set. I recently was reading my copy of Charlie Company and reflected fondly back on those games. Like the Charlie Company rules, the scenarios that Rob ran were based upon time spent in-country. My character was a US Infantry sergeant who survived his 12 month (game) tour, and was finally on his way home.

Sgt Rockwell, due to his good luck, and seemingly invulnerability started to be referred to as Sgt Rockwell, the latest product of Rockwell Industries. After each game, if your character survived, you received a D6 die roll (1-3 = +1, 4-5 = +2 and 6= +3) to augment the character's stats or skills. I was fairly lucky with my rolls. Victor Charles was not happy that I had survived my tour, and I was a recipient of a personal scenario. A VC hit team was waiting for me at the airport as I prepared to return to the World. These games were long before the digital camera and little, if no record exists of them.

Sgt Rockwell leads his squad out of the jungle.

As my contribution I painted up an US Infantry Platoon. I had over forty figures from the Charlie Company line by RAFM. They were divided into three ten man squads, accompanied by an under strength weapons squad and a HQ squad. I built four M113 plastic APCs and a M-48 Patton tank, all ESCI models, purchased from Squadron Shop. I later obtained two 105mm howitzers, which were never assembled or put into the field. Last year when I started to Blog about my WW2 Japanese I dug out the howitzers. I wanted to see how easy they were to assemble compared to  the B.P. Cast model guns. In two words, No Contest.

Two 105mm Howitzers with Camp and M-48 Patton Tank

Heavy Weapons Squad with M113 APC
(2 Hvy MGs, 2 M-79s, 1 LAW and I Sniper)

Understrength HQ Squad. Doc runs towards the Lt.

Shavetail used for scale 
(Above M-48 Patton Tank and Below M-88 ARV)

Having the guns on my painting table inspired some eBay purchases, all from the same seller. I won a M-88 Armoured Recovery Vehicle and a fifth M113 APC. I also gained two Roco M113s, but there is such a noticeable difference in scale compared to both the 20mm figures and the other M113 models that I will put these two APCs up for auction. Since there is no other piece to compare it to, I decided to keep the ARV, even though it too is by Roco Minitanks.

I finally painted the arty crews this past weekend and then decided to photograph the complete unit.  I dug out my box of GW plastic palm trees to provide a jungle like back drop.

 2nd Squad exiting a jungle trail. M-48 at the rear of the column.


  1. Rob, I can almost hear the opening thump thump thump of Paint it Black.

    I'll take those Roco M113's off your hands. What do you want for them? My Rosian army has 1/72nd tanks but the armioured cars and apc's are 1/76 or smaller and Jerry, my opponent, uses mostly minitank stuff so they would fit in.


  2. I got an email from Rob Swan about this post. he said

    "Yes it was the best games I ran. Charles (Grantmyre) and Ian (Holden) made great VCs."