5 November 2000 0400H
Bagging themselves a ZOMO captain in Kalisz was at the top of their priority list. Destroying ZOMO assets was important too. Freeing the prisoners held at the detention facility was… Extra credit.
My sons don’t play in sessions much anymore. Our Twilight 2000 campaign has too much planning, strategy, politics, and recon for their taste. Normally it’s just me and my brother playing.
However, I knew today’s session would be straight-up combat. And the boys jumped in for that.
Maks and Wojciech played by my brother. Skorpion (Maks) and AKM (Wojciech). Grenades.
Grant Derek William played by my middle son. Sniper, remaining across the river. Scoped SVD rifle.
Barna Áron played by my oldest son. He’s the “prisoner” being taken in. Just a concealed P-64 pistol, but his plasti-cuffs have been weakened.
21st MRD “observer” played by my youngest son. He’s there to assist, and witness mission objectives. AKM. Grenades.
The target was Theater Bogusławski. While the Soviet 21st MRD gripped Kalisz in a loose siege, the Polish 10th TD handed off internal security to the ZOMO, the hated communist riot police. And they’d re-purposed the theater as a detention center for citizens deemed trouble-makers.
The party watched to ZOMO outside the theater from across the river for a time, noting patterns and activity. That’s when they’d seen ZOMO troops bring a prisoner to the back (service) entrance of the pre-war landmark.
I actually found a rough floor map of the theater online, perfect for the game.
One roving guard had dogs. There was a PK machinegun nest to the southwest that’d had a good view of the courtyard in the back.
As a stroke of luck, two of Maks’ observation posts established before the operation, Foxtrot and Charlie, had been placed in multistory buildings and had a view of the theater grounds, albeit limited. OP Charlie was 650 meters away, at the top of a 3-story building. OP Foxtrot was 1 klick away, but had a better view from the top of a 12-floor hostel. There wasn’t much immediate support they could offer, but the OPs did have some eyes on the situation.
The party, disguised as Polish Army engineers, brought their “prisoner” to the theater. They were stopped briefly by a ZOMO patrol, and continued their way to the back entrance of the theater.
The two guards at the double doors were in the middle of trying on clothing from a pile nearby… stolen from prisoners Maks surmised. No surprise there, as he’d already judged them to be an undisciplined unit. The worst of the worst, given crap duty.
Maks told them he had a prisoner to drop off, a deserter from their engineer unit.
The guard told him in Polish, “F-off! We’re not taking any Army prisoners. Not our problem.”
“Well, then we’ll wait here for the rest of our unit. You can take it up with my C.O.” And then Maks gave his prearranged hand signal.
Grant Derek William fired on the dog handler, wounding and KDing him. [My brother asked if the missed shot could hit one of the dogs, and I hand-waved it as a 1-2 on a D20 chance… My son rolled a “1”.] One of the dogs yelped as it was hit by a stray bullet.
Wojciech shot the guard who’d been talking with Maks. Big Barna Áron took a swing at the other door guard, cold-cocking him in the head. He went down, unconscious.
Strike attacks with surprise are brutal. Twilight 2000 v2.2, page 198:
“In the case of a surprise attack (unexpected attack from behind), no roll is made; the attack automatically hits.”
“The die roll for hit location is not made for a surprise strike (an unexpected attack from behind) or an aimed attack. The attacker is allowed to pick his or her target in these two cases.”
In Barna Áron’s case, it wasn’t from behind, but I ruled that the ZOMO guards weren’t expecting this attack out-of-the-blue. So I let him have the automatic hit, but made him roll hit location. Note that strike attacks by hand (as opposed to kicks) roll 1d6 for hit location, not the1d10 typically used in direct fire combat. My son rolled a “1”… Head.
Maks had a satchel charge ready, but the doors were unlocked, so he went inside, into a small receiving room, as it turned out. Nobody was in there.
The rest of his men followed, not waiting for the ZOMO men in the PK MG nest to come to alertness. Áron grabbed a PPSh-41 from the guard he dropped.
From across the river, GDW continued engaging the sentries outside, but was at medium range, and plagued with missed shots, and had to clear a jam [Catastrophic Failure].
Once inside, the party was assaulted with a nasty odor, from too many people living in a small space. Maks cracked open the next door, saw a guard, and rolled a frag grenade in his direction. Wojciech mirrored him by dropping a smoke grenade immediately outside.
The situation became chaotic, as a couple more ZOMO guards ran in from doors from either side of the work room. A heavy theater curtain concealed a room beyond, but shouting and barking dogs could be heard.
It was clear that Maks’ men completely outclassed the ZOMO conscripts [most were Novice NPCs], so the fighting was fairly one sided, though Barna Áron and Wojciech sustained minor wounds.
The 21st MRD observer [played by my youngest] opened the curtain slightly and tossed another frag into the room beyond. He didn’t see what happened, but he heard an explosion, screams, and wounded dogs.
While his men held the work room as more guards arrived, Maks went down the east hallway, followed by Áron. The big guy fired on a guard down the hallway, KD’d him, and subsequently ran up, pile-driving him with the butt of his PPSh-41. Maks realized there were several closed doors that Áron foolishly ran past, and began clearing rooms one-by-one.
It was then that Maks saw the ZOMO captain poke his head out of a room ahead and duck back inside.
The man was their prime target.
To Be Continued, next session.