Force on Force: The French in Mali

With my Foreign Legion figures sitting in the cupboard, it was time to put them through their paces! I had been reading that the French government had deployed troops to Mali and, after a chat with Spyros who has more Legion,  Malian government troops and some good insurgent-looking figures, we decided to put on a game with the the end my Legion didn't get a look in..we used Spyros'.

Insurgents in the rough terrain north of the town.

Spyros, Connor and Chris played the Government forces and the Legion. Evan George and Nick were the MNLA- the insurgents...and I umpired. It had been a while since we had played Force on Force- we were all a bit I decided to read the rules while the game was on!

Situation: A rebel force from the National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad (MNLA) was know to be holding the small town of Aboualla. The Malian government requested the support from the French forces deployed in country to assist the government forces in retaking the town. 

Rough terrain to the west.

Mission: To recapture the town with minimal casualties: The Government forces are to conduct the initial assault with French assistance in the event that the advance stalls.

The Government forces were to launch the main frontal attack with the Legion backing up when necessary. Initially they were pinned down by the combined fire of as many insurgent units as possible, although they took few casualties. At one stage all the government markers had pinned markers, but the insurgents could not cause enough casualties to make them break and run- probably due to their habit of holding their AK-47s above their heads to fire them!...The fog of war cards weren't particularly friendly either- they walked into several mines as well.

They also had two technicals...the 1st and 2nd Armoured Divisions- as George called them. They were very effective in blanketing the area of operations in smoke when they were both destroyed very early in the game!!!

The insurgents get the thumbs up by my son. Hi Nick!
Legion reinforcements quickly arrived on the scene in the shape of a sniper team....well once these guys opened up...the insurgents were the ones that went to ground- and the Government troops finally rallied themselves and pushed into the town. By the time the three squads of Legionnaires were deployed and ready to go into action most of the insurgent units were either pinned, running or dead-- the benefits of a well trained sniper team on overwatch against insurgents being very evident!
So the Official Government brief to the world's press emphasised the strength and professionalism of the Malian troops....and made mention of some French 'observers' in the area!
For more pics see Spyros' Blog- No Duff Gamer ( the link is on the right!)

The Area of Operations


The insurgents are in town. The National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad- or MNLA.
The 1st MNLA Armoured Division

Let's go boys!

Let the infidels come!

Malian government troops arrive

French APC's arrive- the Legionnaires are inside.

The government troops advance

French sniper team disembark and move to take up position.

The Legion sections deploy.

Close up!

MNLA moving through the town.

The 1st MNLA Armoured division goes up in smoke!!


  1. Enjoyiable game John. Something different.

    1. It was a good game- interesting variation for Force on Force.

  2. Great looking game, I might have to borrow this scenario for one of our gaming sessions.

    1. Thanks Stuart- If you want any details- just ask!

  3. Great looking game! I've thought about fielding some French troops for a Mali campaign - may have to do that!

    1. Thank you- it's a good chance to field our Legion troops!
      Thanks for looking in.

  4. Great looking game John - fantastic read as always mate.

  5. Great job the terrain and everything,,,