Archive for April, 2011

So both Raptors made their way across the dales to darkest war-torn Staffordshire for First and Only’s Merc Day at Anzio camp, Leek.

The plot was staged around the area of a African conflict zone and we had chosen to play as the local Africans. Rather than a standard “run and gun” day, this was intentionally pitched as requiring role playing, indeed there were 20+ role players from amongst the F+O regulars and marshalls playing character roles from UN medics to engineers rebuilding the collapsed state infrastructure. We tried to support the role play by dressing the part!


Photo courtesy of Jamie, WASPs, as I left the camera at home!

The other players were formed into 3 teams of mercenaries whose objective was to make money! Either in the form of cold hard cash or Gold bullion which started out life in a bank being protected on a rota between the 3 PMC teams.

The day kicked off as usual at F+O with chronoing of all weapons to be used, including sidearms. I always applaud this mainly on safety grounds, but also for fair play. It provides a much leveller playing field for all concerned. Even better was the improvements on the method from my last visit to Anzio with results being taken as an average of 3 shots and several chronos being used for any suspect guns to account for any spurious readings.

The briefs were comprehensive with a safety brief first, and then the scenario brief for the day. Getting 200 or so players to the right place and on time is like herding cats so well done for getting the game to start on time!

Bongo was the designated team leader for the Africans as we set up in our home building, and he set out his plan. Go forth and cause chaos! The whole team did this with exuberence, happily getting into the role play aspect I saw everything from players trying to sell christmas decorations to wandering security details, to drugs sellers and a drum band with spontaneously started following some mercs about. Our first real encounter was as a sightseeing VIP escorted by a PMC team came past our home. Obviously not happy with all their weapons outside our house a group of Africans soon gathered and shouting ensured! Fatman from the Wasps took this opportunity to get close enough to lunge through the protective cordon and stab the VIP… bad luck for his guards who I’m guessing didn’t get paid…

From then on the stage was set. We generally enjoyed ourselves harrassing hapless PMCs who were wary of shooting unarmed civilians and incurring the wrath of the UN inpsectors (a 20 min sin bin/investigation) and pretty much had to take it while we wound them up. We put up posters on their buildings, tried to wander in their security cordons and basically made a right pain of ourselves.

Things got more “serious” after some ingenious africans liberated large quantities of gold and money. The merc onslaught became merciless as they realised Bongos warriors had not only found him chairs from all over the site but gold and cash! Some frantic assaults on our base meant all the BBs saved earlier were rapidly expended.

The afternoon progressed getting ever more frantic with assaults on the merc bases and some great taxi driving by Jamie from F+O in his landrover ferrying Africans direct into the middle of firefights which was great fun, although you had a limited life expectency on bailing out in the midst of open ground and flying BBs.

Come the evening the raptors stopped for some proper food having run nearly all day on adrenalin, and realised just how knackered we were. It was testament to a fine days airsofting that neither of us realised just how hard we had run, pushed, hid, shouted and laughed in a great full days gaming.

High Points.
Giggling like school kids as we stood behind the Landrover preparing pyro to take out the engineers and their security details we’d been waving and smiling at seconds before

Low Point
Getting absolutley shredded in the knee which left me hobbling for quite a while (and then listening to the other teams comms as they congratulated each other on doing it) – but a tiny hiccup in an otherwise great day.

Overall, the level of commitment to the role play side of the day made the event. The preperation and work by the guys at F+O and especially those who agreed to role play characters made it easy for the teams to get into the scenario. Far more actually happened in a long days softing than I could hope to remember – One of the best days I’ve had for a long time.

Big thanks to the role players, the player marshalls, all the fellow players (nice to see the WASPs again!) – African and merc alike, and our illustrious team leader Bongo. You all made it a cracking day.

I’ll certainly try and make the next one.

+++UPDATE+++
Almost forgot… best line of the day to the desert/tan team…”watch your six… he’s got a banana!”

+++ Swampy Update+++

Couldnt agree more.  Was a great days shootin.  Made a complete change from milsim/ woodland/ speedball type games and was all the better for it.  With a pistol in your waist band and a fist full of pyro you had to use guile to find  your way to your objectives and adapt when you got there.  ‘Go hire the engineers’  ok so off we went.  Couldnt get near them werent allowed to talk to them so we pyro’d them instead plus about a half dozen PSD troops hehehe awesome.  Cant wait for the next themed day.

Squawks