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Vietnam 1965-1975» Forums » Sessions

Subject: Lone search for Charlie. Summer 1972. ARVN fights back. rss

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Petri P
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Summer 1972


The modifiers are:

Kien Giang: -3 (FF, NVA)
Chau Doc: -10 (CC, FF, NVA)
An Giang: -1 (VC)
Phong Dinh: -2 (VC)
Sa Dec: -1 (VC)
Vinh Long: -1 (VC)
Kien Tuong: -1 (VC)
Hau Nghia: -1 (VC)
Tay Ninh: -4 (FF, NVA, VC)
Binh Dinh: -1 (VC)
Quang Nam: -1 (VC)
Thua Thien: -20 (CC, FF, NVA, VC)
Quang Tri: -13 (CC, FF, NVA, VC)

SVN loses 3 population, at 287. NLF population at 73.

No strategic war.

No officer replacement. No coup or instability.

SVN morale increases by +1 (Thieu, population, captured capitals), at 156 now. "A" leaders lose a loyalty. Two division leaders are now disloyal. A natural 12 can cause a coup, an 11 can cause instability.

US morale increases by 1 (population, captured capitals), at 308 now. None of the four captured capitals have been relieved.

NVN morale increases by 36, at 924. 36 commitment available.


Two good division leaders just became disloyal. One good division HQ is dead. As painful as it is, ARVN disbands 16 replacements (draft -4) to get at draft 286 vs population 287.

After having draft for the HQ, it makes sense to disband 4 more replacements, and buy the regiment back too. (The augmented regiment can absorb a 6 hit, but costs 4 replacements worth of draft.) ARVN must have enough effective divisions and units to call incidental attacks against NVA driving through the capitals and the blocking positions - if not, NVA can move the whole army to attack/bombard Saigon this year with no fear at all.

-20 ARVN replacements. At 412. Purchasing the dead ARVN units back costs 33 supplies - only 16 available. The missing 17 supplies can be bought by withdrawing 9 air points.. or by increasing US commitment, which would give +3 NVN morale per turn.

US withdraws 9 air points (at 263 now) and replaces them with 21 ARVN supplies. 4 supplies remain after all destroyed ARVN units have been purchased back. 7th division HQ, ac and regiment to Chu Lai. 2 divisional ac battalions to Vung Tau and Can Tho, to rejoin their divisions this turn. An independent ac battalion, 175mm artillery and 4 armor battalions to Saigon.

NVN purchases 4 VC battalions for occupation duties (8 supply pool, 4 commitment), and 96 NVA replacements (32 commitment). 2 commitment are promised for trail supply for the next turn. All political sections are already on the map. NLF draft at 643. The battalions go to Quang Tri, Hue, Chau Phu and Kien Giang. NVA replacements at 173.

ARVN effectiveness roll is: 3 (Hooray!) II and IV corps, and Chief of Staff are effective. All but 3 divisions are effective. One of those three is the 7th, the one which just had the dead HQ and a regiment purchased back to I corps. Its HQ will now move to the border of I and II corps (house rule - US player decides the side of border for effectiveness. This allows it to move to the reasonable II corps on the next season, unless NVA destroys it again this season. In II corps it will be effective 5 times out of 6, meaning Kontum, Pleiku, etc can have an effective regiment to challenge NVA moves in the future.)

At the beginning of Summer 1972:

ARVN Repl 412
VC Repl 0
NVA Repl 173
Trans 6
Air avail 263, total 263.

1st turn

No holding or patrolling.

Strategic moves and Security operations

ARVN 1st division and two 105mm artillery (22 ground + 26 artillery) could make a security operation against an NVA infantry regiment and HQ (7 + 8) in Kien Giang. That would use all movement to reach the target, With 50 (7 of those for intediction) air points, the attack would then have +5 from odds and -1 from terrain, 22 column vs 76 column at +4.

Average losses would be 1.5 ARVN vs 10.66 NVA per round of combat, sounds reasonable. A roll of 4, 1 ARVN, 10 NVA - the regiment and the HQ of the NVA 9th division die, ARVN loses an armored cavalry battalion. The operating stack does not have more movement, the NVA mechanized regiment adjacent to it reaction moves to the town of An Binh.

The 18th ARVN division in Saigon is effective - and so are the 5 armor battalions and the 175mm artillery there. Those make a Security operation to hit the HQ and a mechanized regiment of the NVA 5th division near Tay Ninh. Artillery in Tay Ninh supports.

29 ground strength, 35 artillery, and 52 air points - and 5 extra air to push NVA to 100 column, another extra 7 air for interdiction. NVA is supported by 2 independent artillery. +4 from odds, -1 from terrain. 43 column vs 100 column at +3. A roll of 1 means 4 ARVN, 6 NVA. (A roll of 3 or better would have destroyed the defenders). ARVN loses 2 armor battalions, NVA loses 6 replacements - the survivors retreat to Cambodia, HQ on the road, regiment to jungle, to avoid stacking regiments and to still be within bombardment distance of ARVN.

Most of the stack (those with over 5 movement points) could invade Cambodia - worth of 0-3 US morale loss, which would ultimately be worth of 0-21 ARVN supplies. But invading now could destroy the NVA artillery and HQ here, stopping the threat to III corps for half a year - new artillery could arrive in Iron Triangle in Winter, or again in Parrot's Beak in Spring 1973, if it has to go through the trail.

The ARVN artillery which moved here from Saigon splits off and cannot support the operation anymore. The HQ also splits off, but it can still give normal dedicated support, even if not part of the operation anymore. The rest of the stack enters Cambodia (first invasion ever in this game).

25 ground strength + 26 artillery, and still 62 air points. Versus 7 ground strength and 18 artillery. That is +4 from odds, -1 from terrain, 43 column vs 76 column at +3. And enough air for interdiction, to prevent artillery from escaping. On the average, about 3 ARVN vs 9 NVA losses per round, while a roll of 6 would ensure the destruction of the NVA artillery.

First round roll is a 5, modified to 8. 3 ARVN, 10 NVA. ARVN tries again: a 2 rolled, 3 ARVN, 6 NVA. And again: another 2, 3 ARVN, 6 NVA. Again: a 1 is rolled, 4 ARVN, 6 NVA. Again: at last a 6, 2 ARVN, 13 NVA. The NVA units die, ARVN loses an armor battalion and an air point. An armor battalion and an armored cavalry move back to the previously split off artillery and HQ.

Of the three NVA divisions and 4 artillery attacking III and IV corps, 2 HQ and 2 artillery have been destroyed already. Tay Ninh and An Giang are not threatened seriously anymore.

In the first corps, most of the 22nd ARVN division, with an 175mm artillery (13 ground strength, 22 artillery), and 26 air hits the NVA regiment adjacent to Phu Loc.

14 column vs 56 column, +5 odds, -1 terrain: 1 ARVN armored cavalry battalion, 8 NVA replacements. The mechanized regiment runs away, ARVN returns to the mountain south of Phu Loc, the ineffective units at Phu Loc move to Da Nang.

NVA operations

With these kinds of losses already, NVA does not want to risk more. Bombardment attacks to destroy 3 ARVN replacements, some adjustment to the troop positions. NVA intends to keep Quang Tri, Thua Thien, and Chau Doc.

ARVN operations

The remaining 125 air points strike at NVA, destroying 20 replacements, and losing just 1 air point.

Losses in the first turn:

62 NVA replacements, 2 NVA infantry regiments, 2 NVA HQs, 2 NVA artillery, 13 ARVN replacements, 3 ARVN armor battalions, 2 ARVN armored cavalry battalions, 2 air points.

2nd turn

The ARVN heavy hitting stacks have lost their cheap armored cavalry battalions and have become a bit dispersed. They return to the interior and restack, waiting for new armored units to arrive. They don't want to pay replacements for NVA losses, paying with air points is cheaper. This turn already 20 replacements were demobilized and 13 were lost, a high price - but NVA has been set back in the southern parts of SVN for a while. Without artillery and HQs, it would be futile for NVA to attack ARVN.

NVA operations

Phu Loc is captured, this time there are 3 artillery and a HQ also in the vicinity, ready to bombard ARVN next turn, and ready to provide defensive support against security operations. Some minor readjustment of troop positions. No bombardment attacks, no targets in range.

ARVN operations.

Just bombardment - 261 air points (51 NVA replacements, 9 air points), and 26 artillery which are in the range of Phu Loc (5 NVA replacements). ARVN could have tried to catch some VC political sections, but that would have used air points - better to use them against NVA.

Losses in the second turn: 56 NVA replacements.

Total losses in the Summer of 1972:

118 NVA replacements, 2 NVA infantry regiments, 2 NVA HQs, 2 NVA artillery, 13 ARVN replacements, 3 ARVN armor battalions, 2 ARVN armored cavalry battalions, 11 air points.

Only 56 NVA replacements remain.

[Comment: NVA lost over 48 worth of commitment, even being as passive as this. They also lost more replacements than they can purchase with the 36 commitment they currently get each turn. In the last season, NVA entered with one major corps size effort, and three more modest division size operations. Two of those division sized attacks have been defeated this season.

Counting the demobilized ARVN replacements, also ARVN lost more than they can afford to in the long run. But, the NVA pressure must be easing now - with this rate of losses, NVA will slowly wither away as units are lost faster than they can be rebuilt. Even if no units were built at all, the NVA replacement pool will be shrinking. If it ever runs out, NVA will likely lose all units on the map at that point.

ARVN is winning. As long as it stays as effective as this season.]

At the end of Summer 1972:

US Morale: 308
US Commitment: 300
NVN Morale: 924
NVN Commitment: 924
SVN Morale: 156
SVN Draft Level:287
SVN Population: 287
NLF Draft Level:643
NLF Population: 73
NLF Supply Pool: 14
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