Gallery - Auckland Airsoft NOMAD game

Again I was out with Airsoft Auckland but this time instead of an induction game this was a NOMAD game (don't ask me what the NOMAD [1] stands for). Here the teams are all regulars and they take things a bit more seriously. This is reflected in teams all being in similar cammoflague, everyone having radios and the amount & type of kit on display. Instead of various short games the entirely day was one long game with objectives being updated via radio over the day.

The end result is a much more focussed game that is, oddly enough, actually a bit hard to get good photographs of. Because the teams take it a bit more seriously then they work hard to try not to be seen. Making it worse I had chosen to wear a very bright and easily seen coat (so people wouldn't shoot me) but this meant that I couldn't stand anywhere too close to actual objectives because my presence would give away where the objective was. Note for a future event - wear less noticeable clothing so that I can camp out at objectives to get the more interesting photographs.

You can also see the higher level of commitment in the props being used. The artillery piece in particular was very impressive but a healthy number of tents, gazebos and the like were set up to represent different things like prisons, villages and the like. Naturally this requires a bit of organisation and the first hour arriving on site is setup as people scrabble around the field of play putting everything up. But once set up the players were let down to the field and things began to warm up...

The pre-game setup briefing. Here the people administrating the game and playing the independant roles learn what is going on.

Pre-game test firing to check alignment.

The players arrive and begin getting ready for the day.

The generalissimo gets the chance to test a rifle and fire a few shots because the rest of the day he will be issuing orders rather than shooting.

I know they are called iron sights, but isn't this taking it a little too literaly?

The general briefing for all players where the safety rules and overall objectives for the day are laid out.

Some note down the objectives for the day.

Here the team leaders get their first objective brief. The scenario plays out in stages over the day so the players only get to know about the first objective and discover the rest through the day as they complete tasks.

This is the shot of the day for me - it looks like someone is disapproving of the generalissimo's antics in the background. In reality he was just waiting for the briefing to finish.

This artillery piece was a major centerpiece of the day with many objectives focusing around the firing or control of it. This was an excellent prop given that usually much cruder items are used like small wooden frames that look very loosely like the item they represent.

Here the artillery is under attack from the rebels and being defended by Generalissimo's forces.

More defence of the artillery.

This gap was just in past the artillery piece and this is a rebel trooper trying to flank the defenders. It was a nice sneaky move that unfortunately didn't work as well as hoped.

This is where the attack on the artillery finally founded and failed. It was a close run thing and only the timely arrival of reinforcements for the defenders frustrated the attack.

A quick lunch break and ammo resupply.

By this point in the game, thanks to some clever solo play with diversionary fighting, the Generalissimo and his artillery crew had been captured and placed in prison. Oddly they seemed to be enjoying captivity, perhaps a little too much.

The Generalissimo is handcuffed in preparation to be moved for extraction by UN forces to then stand trial for war crimes including shelling civilians with a certain artillery piece.

After the gane it is time to unwind, quench your thirst and chat over the days events before the formal debrief begins.

This is the formal debrief underway - a chance to find out what worked, what went wrong and any issues arising from the day.

Participating in this was a heap of fun, even if I couldn't get into the positions I wanted to for the best shots. Just listening to the radio chatter as teams worked out what they needed to do, where the enemy was and the like was entertaining. The varying styles of play came in strongly with the Generalissimo forces being very much focused on finding and killing the enemy. This focus meant that they frequently got pulled out of position by deliberate distractions that kept them focused on the wrong thing. The impression I got was that the Generalissimo forces generally had better tactical control, probably helped by the fact that they very rarely fought the entire rebel force, but lost to the superior strategic control the rebels exercised.

If this looks like fun to you, check out their facebook page for more details.

[1] I have since been reliably informed that N.O.M.A.D. stands for Northern Operation Milsim Airsoft Division. The things ya learn!
Philip R. Banks
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