We've been playing Tomorrow's War lately. We have decided to spend some time playing these rules and learning them properly. As I wrote in the last post, TW is not the easiest rules set for me to read. However, the last game went very smoothly indeed, so clearly they are easier to play once the rules have been read once. Perhaps the difficult reading forces them to be mentally ingested and digested properly. Who knows? Anyway, the battle report for this game (with comments on the campaign rules included with TW) has been posted, but today's post is about the background and organisation of my troops, the Bwendi Republican Army. I plan to add the local militias, the Bwendi Uniform Militia Companies, when I have worked out what they have and how they should be organised. I have figures painted for them, but probably not a full platoon yet. I really should check. So, back on topic ...
Background to our games
For our sci-fi games we are planning on playing both platoon level and company level military actions, as well as some character-driven skirmishes. These will all be set in the Traveller universe but starting in the 24th century with lower tech level troops (about TL8 or 9 for the Traveller buffs). Our nations occupy the planet of Beltene in the Reaver's Deep sector, which is technically the back end of nowhere at this time. Supplies come in from outside, but it is not worth the cost to merchant shipping concerns to send the latest technology out that way. The goal is to run our nations using one of the Traveller supplements that allows you to do this (possibly Pocket Empires, but The World Tamer's Handbook has some useful ideas in it too, as does Dynasty from Mongoose). We can then develop our nations in whichever way we think best. Populations will rise, research will be undertaken and developments made that should see us moving from ground vehicles to grav vehicles over time and then on to a mass migration to spinward of the Spinward Marches in time for the Traveller Milieu 0 setting or thereabouts. I just want to place our pocket empires in the position to fight Zhodani and Sword Worlders, as well as making characters from our nations able to take part in the Classic Traveller adventures.
History of Bwendi and the Bwendi Republican Army
The BRA is a force of regular troops. The Bwendi do not practise conscription, so all troops are volunteers. It has existed in one form or another since the unification of Ztumsia on Terra in the mid-1980s under the command of Colonel Throckmorton P. Gladiolus XXIII. Ztumsia was a war-torn central African republic/dictatorship until it was unified by the Bwendi tribe under the Colonel. After that it adopted a British-style democracy ruled by an elected prime minister and his government. Such was the love of the people for the first Colonel, though, that they have always re-elected one of the Colonel's children to this post when the old Colonel is too old to carry on in the role of prime minister. There is also a tradition that each sibling adopts the name Colonel Throckmorton P. Gladiolus upon taking up the reins of power for the first time.
The core of the BRA is the armoured infantry. In the 24th century they wear full ballistic cloth suits with communications arrays in the helmets. Riflemen carry the Gladcorp M23 Assault Rifle and fireteams have either a Gladcorp Model 33A Team Support Weapon or a Gladcorp TAC19 RPG as support weapons. See the TOE page for a full breakdown of the standard Bwendi infantry company.
Armoured support is supplied by the Bwendi Republican Armoured Troops. The standard BRAT platoon of eight tanks divided into a command section and two tank sections is usually subordinated to an infantry battalion or company commander as a support element, although it happens that the tank regiments sometimes operate en masse, especially when pursuing a breakthrough in enemy lines.
Scout teams are a battalion-level asset, although they are often parcelled out as need to the lead companies of the battalion when advancing. Each scout team comprises six men in three Mebebque-class light transports. Scout teams are heavily armed with Gladcorp SN5h Heavy Sniper Rifles and Gladcorp Flash12 Laser Rifles. They function both as snipers and as scouts, using the laser rifles to paint targets for the battalion's heavy assets.
To supplement the BRA, BUM companies were formed in each town. These local militia units train at weekends and also go on a camp once a year for two weeks. They are generally poorly trained overall but morale can be quite high. Numbers in the BUMs can be variable and many are not at full strength. A full-strength company would have 1 officer, 5 NCOs and 24 Troopers organised into three sections, each of 10 men. The officer is attached to one of the sections for combat operations. Armament is Gladcorp M20 Assault Rifles, Gladcorp SM13 SMGs, Gladcorp TAC11 RPGs and Gladcorp FN80 GPMGs. Each section usually has an RPG and a GPMG. Some BUMs are designated Close Assault Companies. BUM CACs are universally armed with SMGs and GPMGs. They also have a higher than usual allocation of grenades. BUMS will usually wear flak vests although not all of them can afford the armour.