"It's hot, like Africa hot. Even the lions are saying it's hot"
Torrential rains made June the second wettest on record but the Gods of Airsoft brought the sun out in force lending a truly "African" feel to the 4th Annual The Tantalum Contract. In the game's background story, three rival mining cartels fight for control of Africa's largest deposit tantalum, a rare earth metal vital in the production of cell phones worldwide. Each cartel hires its own army of Private Contractors (mercenaries) to conduct black ops against their rivals.
Three teams were assembled, each supporting a different charity. Anglo Sino Security (A.S.S) in black tops, were playing for the Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund. Global Resource Defense enterprises (G.R.D.e) in tan, were playing for The Center for Spectrum Services (an school for autistic children). Kiev Afrikans Secure Holdings (K.A.S.H) in green camo, were playing for Friends of Turkana (an African development charity).
Each army defended an HQ base in wooded, muddy terrain and between them a MOUT area designated the tantalum mine, defended by a small Pan-African Peace Keeper OPFOR team. Their primary mission was to take the mine complex, find a timer box in the mine entrance building and start their team's recording timer. The team that recorded the most time on the box each hour scored the points for possession of the mine. Additional missions were assigned, including V.I.P. protection, and the capturing video of pistol kills and taking out enemy COs.
The day started with a mini-game to familiarize the players with a new MilSim rule set which included body armor rules and Moondog's Medic Rule. Body armor and hard helmets protected the player from their first BB hit on the accessory. Moondog's Medic Rule allows for players to be 'treated' for a BB hit on their limbs and torso but not 'fully healed'. Treated players could continue to play but with limited mobility or disabled limbs.
K.A.S.H. won the mini-game, earning them the right to first choice of HQ locations. They took the oil platform south of the Mine Complex. G.R.D.e. chose the abandoned UN Compound and K.A.S.H. took over the abandoned medical clinic.
They game started with great intensity. The MOUT complex was hotly contested by all teams. Last year all three teams lost their V.I.P. (a balloon hidden in their HQ) to enemy attacks. This year, with more troops at their disposal, all three CO's positioned more defenders around their HQ's and all three teams' balloons survived unpopped.
As the day dragged on, the heat and humidity took its toll. By 14:00 many players were taking extended breaks at staging to rehydrate or simply call it a day. After taking a poll of the CO's and Embed staff, we decided to end the the scenario at 16:00. The Zulu24 staff held skirmish games in the MOUT field for players who still had the energy to play on.
All three teams managed to win control of the mine for a game period, and one period with no team controlling the mine. The final scores were close with A.S.S. earning 300 points and K.A.S.H. and G.R.D.e. tying with 350 points. A tie breaking pistol duel was held between K.A.S.H.'s and G.R.D.e.'s commanders, Misery and Mr. Spank.
After walking 10 paces, Misery and Mr. Spank turned and engaged each other in the MOUT field. After a furious spray of fire, Misery scored a hit on Mr. Spank's arm and it was over. G.R.D.e was this year's winner of The Tantalum Contract. G.R.D.e players won trophy Tantalum 4 key chains from 1800Nametape.com.
A raffle was held with prizes donated by Evike.com including bags of awesome Evike coffee. In a cool twist to the idea of death cards, at the start of the game, each player was issued a fake $100 bill of Ubinda currency. Players could loot wounded enemy for their Ubinda money. At the end of the game each player was issued a free raffle ticket and those looted bills could be turned in for extra raffle tickets.
The Zulu-24 staff held skirmish games in the MOUT field for players who still had the energy to play on. The rest of us enjoyed plates of lechon (Filipino spit roasted pork) catered by Centurion of FilForce. We left the field with full bellies and happy faces.
Thanks to all the players who attended who together helped raise $1000 for charity. Thanks to Evike for supplying some great swag and prizes. Thanks to my wife and kids for handling sign-in. Thanks to the Zulu-24 staff and owners for running chrono and maintaining the best airsoft-only outdoor field in New York.
- 1st Place GRDe: $500 donated to Center for Spectrum Services
- 2nd Place KASH: $250 donated to Friends of Turkana
- 3rd Place ASS: $250 donated to Intrepid Fallen Heroes Fund
The Nanking Mining Corp contracted my company, Anglo-Sino Security, to serve their interests in Ubinda. I've taken jobs in Ubinda before and it is always hot, Africa hot. There is no shortage of opportunities in Africa, if you can stand the heat it is a better place to work than the middle east. Working for ASS is usually routine urban ops, protecting VIPs, securing events, force protection for logistical resources, and even a bit of covert operations. ASS has some of the best intelligence resources and good intel means fluid operations, but not this time. Our objective was to secure a newly discovered tantalum mine deep in the interior of Ubinda. The cover story was that Nanking wants to develop this site as an economic resource for the newly independent and impoverished people of Ubinda. The fact that Nanking stands to make billions from control of the mine was just a footnote.
Transportation options to the interior of Ubinda are limited, we were inserted at a disused airfield not far from the Tantalum mine. Bell Ba609 VTOL aircraft dropped us off but that meant no MRAPs or other vehicles I am used to having at my disposal. We hoofed it to an abandoned UN medical clinic and I chose it to be my headquarters until we could take the mine and surrounding town. My intel indicated that other mining companies were also trying to establish a foothold here and that meant we'd be running into other professional security forces and not just the typical local militia. I was glad that I had a team of professional contractors and not third country nationals that you often get in the middle east. I climbed up to the second floor of the medical center to address my PMCs and assign squads and missions. Everyone was dressed in the typical ASS uniform, that black gear is highly visible and intimidating. It always served well in urban environments where it is highly visible and a deterrent. Here it was going to soak up the hot African sun and make hydration critical. We had a Nanking representative with us and protecting him was going to be critical with so many professional operators in the area. He was placed deep within the facility with a permanent security detail.
The recent monsoon season had left many areas covered with a slippery muck making running nearly impossible. My men headed off to the tantalum mine as fast as they could through the muck but weren't able to get into the town before encountering contractors in the employ of KASH. The initial objective had been to penetrate the town perimeter and establish a base of operations with a medic triage inside the city limits. The advance team did get in and was able to commandeer the mine but couldn't hold out against Pan African peace keepers that had decided to disrupt our "corporate negotiations" in Ubinda. We used a downed chopper as the center of an alternate FOB and kept it supplied with medical personnel and fighters throughout the operation.
The intense firefight at the city's edge was sending a steady stream of casualties back. The medics were doing a fantastic job of keeping my men in the fight, but inevitably some had to be sent back to the airfield for evacuation and replacement. A squad inserting back into the AO discovered a KASH team attempting recon of the airfield. Although they were driven back I didn't know what intel they may have acquired. Arsenal and another PMC moved in to locate KASH's resupply and successfully acquired video intel of their operations.
By midday it became apparent that our location would make it near impossible to secure the mine and protect our VIP. With KASH's headquarters so close to our own I made the decision to abandon the primary objective and instead focus our efforts on crippling KASH and GRDe by eliminating their VIP. I consolidated my team and sent them under the leadership of Novus Septem to assault the oil rig that KASH had adopted as a headquarters. Despite penetrating the oil rig perimeter multiple times my team was unable to locate the VIP there. The TROLLs led the attack on the abandoned compound the GRDe was operating from. However, a heavy defensive perimeter in the swamp made it impossible to get through.
Subcontracting to ASS were the highly skilled operators of TROLLs and Novus Septem. Throughout the day I relied heavily on their skills and experience to lead attacks on KASH and GRDe to deflect attention from the mine area. TFN was quick to respond when I needed them to reinforce operations on both our North and West lines. Grim Destiny floated between different roles and provided a much needed boost in combat effectiveness. Death Corps provided rock steady defense of my headquarters throughout the day despite repeated attacks. KD my XO and fellow Vanguard was my eyes and ears and relayed my orders to the various squads throughout the AO. Alchyops, Thor, B20 and Dray made their presence felt both on the attack and defense.
ASS successfully protected our Nanking VIP from concentrated attacks on our HQ multiple times. I am proud of all the operators under my command for this difficult mission. Despite being constantly under attack on two sides for hours they soldiered on and refused to give in. The defense team at the chopper FOB was under intense fire all day and despite being driven back a few times, they gathered their strength and pushed back in relentlessly. Everyone who rushed back and forth between the North and West skirmish lines to defend and then attack, my hat is off to you. I asked a lot of everyone under my command and you all gave me 105%. If we had managed to kill those VIPs the outcome would have been very different.
I expect to see all of you for the next ASS mission!
After my arrival at the AO, my comrades and I gathered with a few contractors we knew after we had our equipment inspected to make sure it would meet the needs of the Job. As with any first day of work, an orientation and safety briefing were in order. At that point I was informed that a competition between three rival security firms would be held shortly, and that I was to be the squad leader of my group. That is when I met our CO MrSpank, a man who's presence demands obedience and respect. The skirmish lasted but a mere fifteen minutes with the score in our favor, resulting with minor casualties to my squad and my team.
Following a moment of recovery, a location for both a headquarters and a reinforcement point were selected. I was tasked with the defense of a sizable village with an oil rig which was our designated headquarters, as well as a VIP hidden within. I speculate we were given this assignment due to our appearance and experience. My squad consisted of one heavy gunner in carpenter shorts and a t-shirt (my Brother), a disabled airsoft veteran, my father (56 and never played an event before) with and with an MP5k, our medic(AK 74, 175 fps) who never played airsoft before, and a sorry little excuse of a commander (I am 5'4").
Throughout the day we were peppered with small arms fire from A.S.S. Approximately ten insurgents, which resulted in little more than an irritation for the most part. At times the ASSault on our right flank warranted assistance of more KASH employees, including VOA and Soviet throwback operators. The perimeter was far from ideal for defense due to the undergrowth which stopped thirty feet short of our outer points of cover, although this was not a big problem for some of our gunners as they were able to tear the stuff. And on left flank came sparse resistance from the Pan African Peacekeepers. On multiple occasions I was forced to fall back to the reinforcement point and resupply, returning with a few replacements and flanking the A.S.S. contractors, often taking them by surprise.
On one excursion I was concealed within the brush and mistakenly shot by a well concealed SAW gunner(on my team), luckily I was immediately patched up by my squad medic, I can't blame the guy because I learned latter that a team member walked into a building to speak with my squad medic and tripped an IED in the doorway that I had set. A landmine was also detonated although no one has taken responsibility for that, I believe it was an unlucky comrade in the wrong place because A.S.S. never made it to the outer defenses.
With twenty minutes left in the game, a last ditch all out offensive was made. With bullets whizzing past us from the right tree line we moved from cover to cover along the left flank, eventually we made it to the timer. By the time I reached the building there were already a few KASH operators inside, and a few along the wall behind. The entrances on either side were covered with enemy fire, so I handed of my SVD, revolver, and climbed through the eighteen inch window in the back. Once inside I retrieved my gear and started covering windows and organizing the defense. At one point one of the medics got hit while treating a patent and my squad medic slipped and hurt his leg on the way to someone else. I decided to hand over my rifle, took his armband, and started treating people with my revolver drawn. By that time the horn sounded and we headed in.
To sum it up, I had a blast, there were a lot of respectful player on each team, and I hope to return next year.
The best part of the day was getting my third pistol kill.
The worst part of the day was wishing I had my phone after I got my third pistol kill.
Lessons learned: Come prepared, Attrition wins the day, Hydrate.
Thanks Moondog this was a success.
June 29th, 2013 - McMining Corporation International was able to secure exclusive Tantalum excavation rights using GRDe as their primary security/defense contractor.
The wilds of Ubinda and the associated urban component would require the best operatives GRDe had to offer. The hand selected team was brought in from all around the globe and consisted of seasoned veterans well versed in jungle/woodland warfare to experts in the MOUT environment.
The GRDe Ubinda force consisted of five elements. The nature of those five elements remains classified although ten members of the team were detained at the border and were not available for duty. Each element was well trained and led by experts in their field. They were able to operate autonomously yet still under the control of central command to complete the mission objectives. The overall GRDe force was led by Misery who is known for pushing his personnel to the limits to produce the desired outcome.
GRDe selected the abandoned outpost as their headquarters and location to protect their injured VIP. It was completely isolated from suspected camps of mercenaries (KASH and ASS) hired by rival mining companies but yet had relatively easy access to the mine compound. It was secured and defended primarily by a tenacious element with a leader having 25 years military experience as an Army Ranger. Anti-personnel ordinance was deployed in the perimeter as well as within the compound. “Come Get Some” was their motto. They successfully defended multiple attacks and even while outnumbered provided support outside of HQ as battle weary elements rotated in for some rest.
Three elements, also led by seasoned veterans, were assigned to secure the mine as well as complete specialized mission objectives. This was the down and dirty, door-to-door, take it an inch at a time, type grunt work. This was battle after battle in the hot and humid African environment. These elements did the heavy lifting as they say. The level of opposition from both KASH and ASS was intense as they had brought their A-teams as well. Medics for all GRDe elements were an integral part of keeping the momentum and the subsequent success of the overall mission. Raids on rival mining companies camps / HQ were also executed by these elements primarily to draw enemy forces from the mine to provide support.
The last element was a three-man recon/sniper team. Their mission was to provide recon intel, capture video footage from the enemy camps, take out opposing commanders if the opportunity arose, and generally just cause as much interference as possible. Mission accomplished on three out of four. At times there were enemy teams specifically in search of this unit because they wreaked so much havoc into the compound from their various hides.
With less than 30 minutes left in the campaign the strategy changed. Misery and Cassius entered the compound with shotguns. The element guarding the VIP was taken to skeleton status with the remaining team pushing south through the swamp towards the downed helicopter and enemy HQs. During this push the team closest to the mine, along with the recon/sniper unit and parts of the other three elements, engaged any and all opfor from the woods on the east side of the compound. Kills of 30+ were reported by the recon/sniper team alone.
After the smoke cleared from the final push KASH and GRDe had tied for control of the mine. Mr. Spank and Misery were put in the mine compound for a pistol only domination match. After pacing off back to back the duel began with both participants turning and quickly firing while moving to cover. Misery emptied a complete 1911 magazine and with a well-executed mag change caught Mr. Spank with a round.
KASH and ASS were formidable opponents and in retrospect the campaign could have been won by any of the teams. However the superior planning, implementation, execution, and tenacity of the highly skilled GRDe operatives made the difference.
Our employer McMining International is a very satisfied customer.
About NYC Airsoft and Moondog Industries
NYCAirsoft.com is a website portal to information about airsoft events, cultural events, historical reenactments, tactical sports and entertainment. Featuring the NYC Airsoft forum and Facebook group, it facilitates social networking among airsoft players and teams in the New York City area.
Moondog Industries LLC. is a boutique developer of unique tactical products created for airsoft, paintball, law-enforcment, and military use. Moondog Industries produces airsoft games benefitting such charities as the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, the Wounded Warrior Project, the USO and the American Diabetes Society.