Welcome to Platoon Forward!

Welcome to the site where the story of the battle is as important as the battle itself. Here we will focus on men thrust into extraordinary situations of life and death. They must lead other men with duty and honor to meet their countries objectives. Some will be blessed with great skill, some will carry great shortcomings. No matter what nation, no matter what war, no matter what theater, they are all called to move their Platoon or Squadron forward!

These are their individual stories as played out using my various campaign rules . Hopefully these stories will entertain and inspire you to use your own troops, airmen and sailors to accomplish your own great heroics.

Monday, June 18, 2018


So finally did my research and got some ARVN ACAV painted up.  First is a great book alert.  This book was recommend by several folks on TMP and it is great.
$6 of ebay and it has great pictures and really talks about armor operations from the French ( which I have an interest in) all the way through 1975 and the NVA.  Well worth it if you want to know about armor ops in Vietnam.  Turns out there was a fair amount of armor in Vietnam and ARVN led the way in the development of ACAV.  What would ACAV look like on the table top?  Would it be fun without troops to move around?  Could I resist unloading my M-113s? 
Next I painted up some M-113s and 2 Walker bulldogs.
The first batches of M-113s had brown stripes.  Unfortunately, I could find no evidence of the Bulldogs being painted that way.  I also scratch built a ruined hooch since in FoF building get destroyed.

Next I had to roll up my Platoon.  I just went with 2 squads to start since I only have 2 M-113s painted up at present.  Also I am not sure what configuration the platoon leader had his track in.

You will see the Platoon is average (8/8) with the LT a smart guy who actually believes in the cause.  Unfortunately his is a poor leader and hesitates on the battlefield.  This will translate to poor initiative in the game when he is around.  Sgt Pham of 1st squad comes from a fishing village and has made it by doing his job well and keeping his mouth shut.  Again no leader but at least he doesn't hesitate.  2nd squad has Sgt Dao who worked as a butcher before being drafted.  He is gloomy and likes the sauce but at least he is an average leader.

I didn't roll up the scenario because I wanted to use my Alpha boat.  I did roll up the board and the NVA.  As you can see above this platoon is from the 6th ACR which operated out of My Tho for much of the war.  The NVA have increased presence along the rivers with bunkers containing recoiless rifles.  So a combined operation is planned with an Alpha boat as the lure and the M-113s to launch a ground sided strike to eliminate the bunkers.

US/ARVN come from the top.  Bunkers at the fork in the river.  Tank will need to make a bog check if within 40 yards ( 1 hex)of the river or swamp.  Each bunker automatically had a RR while I rolled for the other blinds using Platoon Attack out of Platoon Forward.  ( I rolled a little light.  Probably not bad for a first mission.)

The alpha boat patrols towards the danger zone

ARVN moves parallel to the river about 200 yards off the shoreline.  M-113s in front as mines are not expected and they can check for soft ground.

A 75mm RR opens up on the Alpha boat!  It responds in kind.

Sgt Pham races towards the gunfire!

The NVA deploy their assets to stop the armor.

The Alpha boat duels the RR while a 57mmRR opens on 1st squad.  Meanwhile 2nd squad takes on 2 RPGs, one in front of the barn and 1 from the swamp.

A cool random event occurs and a passing Huey briefly adds fire to the battle in front of the barn.  It is enough to drive the NVA back.

The Bulldog takes aim at the bunker housing the 57mm RR

It is good to be a tank; even a light tank!   Scratch one bunker.

Meanwhile the Alpha boat has suppressed the other RR and with Sgt Pham continuing to drive forward the NVA decide to abandon it and escape through a tunnel.

The NVA still trying to damage the ACAVs from the swamp!  They never did.

With all NVA forces on the board pinned and the bulldog starting to shell the house the NVA escape off the board.   Total NVA casualties  5 KIA 2 WIA.  Total ARVN casualties... 1 WIA.

Great game that played quick.  With so few free world elements on the board I played this battle in an hour.  I kept the M-113s moving almost the whole game and they just kept shooting.  I should have dismounted them to try and stop the 75rr guys from leaving through the tunnel but to be honest with only 3 guys to dismount I was afraid they might lose.
I declared it a win for ARVN even though the bulk of the NVA escaped.  They didn't have enough forces to cordon off the area and the bunkers were destroyed plus their kill ratio was impressive.  Post game 2nd squad responds well to Sgt Dao's leadership and they are now +1 towards him.

The book above said it took 7 RPG rounds to hit a M-113 and about 7 hits to knock one out.  I had 8 RPG shots and non of them did any damage.  It was nerve racking tooling around ignoring the RPGs but it worked!




  1. awesome Joe ! , thx for posting !

  2. I’m with Jimmi, that was pretty damn cool. I’m loving the M-41, and hootch is pretty neat, but ya can’t call the ACAVs “1st Squad “ and “2nd Squad,” they need cool vehicle names like “Crouching Tiger” and Hidden Dragon.” ;)


    1. Jimmie thanks I do think my tables are improving
      Jack. Lol. Here I am trying to be historical and you come up with that; too funny think I will do it though because it would be cool in a western way

    2. Matter o’fact, Jimmi is shipping me some bamboo, more jungle, and more troops as we speak.

      Nothing ahistorical about troops naming their vehicles man, just don’t use the silliness I provided!