Monday, December 10, 2012
Bring out the toys. Rabuck is going to teach.
The last unit in my military history class is modern asymmetrical warfare. As a case study, we read Mark Bowden's Black Hawk Down, still available in the serial form in which it was originally published in the Philadelphia Inquirer. Because the operation described is so complex, and because the reading is so episodic, I decided to lay out the following game table, so we could represent some of the action as it occurred. And yeah, we'll be watching the movie as Christmas draws near and attention spans go down the chimney.
The scene above is the plan as conceived. The D-Boys have yet to drop in, but the Rangers are about to quick-rope into position (only two of the four chalk groups are represented on the table). One student correctly pointed out that one of the helicopters was out of position, and it should be a block to the north. We moved it.
Then we placed the Rangers and Delta team into position. Rumbling in from the south are three Humvees representing the ground convoy. Still to come: mobs of militia and roadblocks galore.
Finally, a student pointed out that the helicopters are not Blackhawks, but rather Vietnam-era Hueys. I explained that gamers are cheap and often use substitutes when they don't feel like chucking down fifteen bucks for a period-appropriate chopper.