Thursday, 14 April 2022

1985: Deadly Northern Lights Second Echelon - Units

As you probably know, 1985: Deadly Northern Lights is now at DEFCON 3. Here's a short description of the new and updated forces available to NATO with this Second Echelon mobilisation.

On a side note, the number of volunteers enlisting for the Northern Europe campaign has been impressive, up to the point that all the transport assets are full and we are evaluating to stop the recruitment. 

Last but not least, please note that after the declaration of DEFCON 1 all the new / updated counters will be available for download from the TRLGames official site.

USN Carrier Battlegroups

The three available USN Carrier Battlegroups (CV-59 Forrestal, CV-66 America, CVN-69 Eisenhower), previously represented by a single naval counter, are now detailed at single ship level.

This allows using the standard naval rules for all their possible tasks, and of course for possible Soviet attacks too.

UK 1st Infantry Brigade

The British 1st Infantry Brigade, earmarked as a possible reinforcement for AFNORTH and in particular Denmark, was previously represented in its three battalions configuration with an alternate "maxed out" configuration of five battalions.

My co-designer Anthony Morphet served in the unit and strongly protested against this, bringing more and more convincing arguments toward the five battalions configuration. This "maxed-out" OOB is now the official composition of the Brigade.

USN Fast Sealift Ships

Starting in 1981, USN began acquiring specific high-speed container ships and converting them into the Algol Class Vehicle Cargo Ships, or SL-7. 

These vessels, combining high speed and decent protection, were assigned to AFCENT and eight of them could have transported a heavy US division to Europe. In June 1985, only four vessels were already operational. 

in 1985: Under an Iron Sky, the effect of the FSS ships on the US reinforcements to the Central Front is abstracted. The specific counters below are intended to be used only in 1985: Mutual Assured Destruction combined campaign, allowing a more realistic and detailed use of the Military Sealift Command capabilities.

US 9th Light Infantry Division

In 1981, US Army started experimenting with the "High Technology Light Division" concept. The basic idea was to create a division that could deploy using approximately 1,000 C-141 sorties and still have sufficient combat power to be used in high intensity conflicts.

As could be expected, the project encountered several problems and went thru different revisions: The 1985 version had a mix of light (HMMW equipped) and heavy (M901 TOW equipped) combined arms battalions, and was still considered not definitive.

All of the above brought me to introduce a new type of combat unit, the Motorized Infantry, that can be deployed using Strategic Air Transport only. A worthy addition to the NATO arsenal, if you can find enough airlift for it.

NATO Convoys

After a few days of an all-out conflict against the Warsaw Pact, NATO would have probably needed a steady flow of ammunition and supply from the US in order to keep fighting at its maximum combat potential. 

Convoys, each one representing several transport ships and their escort, are already present in the 1985: Mutual Assured Destruction combined campaign and in 1985: Sacred Oil, and are now used in 1985: Deadly Northern Lights too.

Tuesday, 5 April 2022

1985: Deadly Northern Lights Second Echelon - Operational Maps

 A quick preview of the new operational maps for 1985: Deadly Northern Lights - Second Echelon.

COs using the previous edition should notice: 

  • The lighter colour used for Arctic Rough 2 terrain.
  • The lighter colour used for Arctic Plain terrain.
  • The absence of Air Interception Modifiers, not used anymore with the latest rules.
  • The absence of the CVBG Holding Boxes, not used anymore with the introduction of the single ships composing each CV Battlegroup.
  • Some minor changes / corrections here and there.