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Sunday, June 7, 2009

Warriors in the Woods IX

Oppressive heat, hordes of ravenous insects and 100% humidity greeted the American soldiers as they stepped of the skids of their Hueys onto the banks of the Mekong River. The under strength company, of 100 men, peered through the tall grass to the far side of the river. Every man knowing they must use one small bridge to cross the river and straight into, what intelligence estimates, 100 battle hardened NVA soldiers.

The mission for the USA is simple, recover artifacts of religious and culturally significance to the people of South Vietnam and destroy all NVA in the area. The North Vietnamese Army will hold their ground, repel the American invaders and unify their country under one flag.

The lines are drawn and the battle set to begin, not in Southeast Asia in the 1960’s, but at Mersey Road Paintball, East River, Nova Scotia, June 7, 2009. Vietnam is the theme for Banshee Paintball’s Warriors in the Woods IX: RECON, the latest installment of the premier scenario paintball series in Eastern Canada.

The Tippinators paintball team tasked with anchoring the NVA side in an attempt to keep the USA at bay was primed for the fight. “This is going to be an epic fight.” Said Ben VanHorne of the Tippinators, “The USA has a solid group of players. It will take everything we’ve got to hold them off,”

Unlike other Warriors in the Woods events registration was limited to 200 for this event. “I really like the lower number of players on the field.” said Chris Mullins of the Tippinators, “With half the normal number of players there will be lots of room to move around out there. It was a good call of Eric [Eric Fisher owner of Banshee Paintball] to limit registration.”

The main choke point for the game was the one bridge across the river which bisected the field. Aggressive fire and movement from one side then the other resulted in small numbers of players crossing the river. Once into enemy territory these groups were overwhelmed and eliminated. Five Tippinators did manage to break through and advance to the enemy rear area wreaking havoc along the way.

Tippinator player Austin ‘Juno’ Flaherty ran through the US lines picking up one artifact after another. His constant stopping to retrieve artifacts made him look like James Woods from his appearance on the popular television show ‘Family Guy’. While watching Flaherty players expected to hear him say “Oooh another artifact! Oooh another artifact!”

In his haste to retrieve artifacts Flaherty pushed past the US Flag station and the points that go along with a flag capture. Flaherty managed to fight his way back to the station only to be eliminated a few feet from the flag.

The points missed as a result not capturing the flag ended as a moot point. A large number of USA players pushed across the bridge and held long enough for reinforcements to pour in. A valiant last stand by the NVA was to no avail. The spirited USA push and flag capture near the end of game time was enough to push the USA over the top, to an insurmountable lead, and ultimate victory.

The NVA, lost the battle but not the war, pulled back to lick their wounds and prepare for the next battle at Warriors in the Woods X.

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