August 25, 2013 sliabh Game NewsRionegro EscalationUncategorized

I am a little late doing my usual post game message*, so please accept my apologies.

First, what a game. Despite the uncertain weather forecast we were blessed and had only one shower during the whole game. It was a weekend for sun cream rather than ponchos. The turn was about 250, easily making the Rionegro Escalation the biggest Airsoft event in the country. But was it any good? The reaction I am getting from most people is YES, with plenty of demands for more, and soon.

I am going to have amazing memories of lying in my tent at 0100 and having it suddenly lit up like daylight from high powered torches, just before hearing the ripping sound of a stream of BBs from a support gun tearing into it seeking out the attacker using it for cover. There was¬†leading a disastrous attempt by the UN to arrest some Heavies at their checkpoint where only 3 UN got out alive. And the desperate defence of what the UN ended up calling “Camp Zulu” because of the waves of attackers that just kept coming hour after hour…

I missed out on the huge fire fight for the courtyard in the Sugar Factory, the OSER’s deciding to execute all their own side’s snipers (as they heard the Butcher was one), and the amazing spectacle of mass with hymns and a ceremony in the church on Sunday morning. And that is to say nothing of all the dozens of big and small actions people got involved in all weekend.

A lot of people made all that happen, and helped to make the event the spectacle that it was. This is a run through of many of them, but I will apologise in advance for some who I am sure to have overlooked by accident.

Thanks first to Eddie (and his father) for the use of Bellurgan park again this year. The venue really makes the event, and it wouldn’t be anywhere near as good a game without it. Eddie has been very accommodating of our annually escalating requests!

Thank you to Mark and Paul for all the site work (props, vehicles, site prep) as well as the rest of the support crew in Bellurgan – from the drivers, to the team that got the site ready, to the ladies with the coffee, sandwiches and hot food who lifted the morale of more than a few people over the weekend.

Then there are our EMs: Dave, David, Conor, Laurence, Glen, Fabio and Hugh. These guys are key to organising and planing the event (we have a google drive with 120Mb of game files). The job description calls for prep of missions, manage the unit, and put on the high viz if needed. I don’t think anyone ended up limited to just that. They did all of the above, and a lot more from providing vehicles, to organising teams into sections. Special mention has to go to Laurence for the crazy mass idea, and for Fabio who produced a load of UN props and documentation even though he knew he would not be able to make it to the game.

Thanks as well to Cian for the website, and helpfully setting up and then repeatedly modifying a WordPress installation for me to tinker with. Warren for the poster and game patch once again, and Dave for letting us use a chunk of for the closed unit forums.

Chris and Dan have to get big thanks as well for volunteering for the Faction Commander roles. They did a great job of organising and leading their respective factions. People sometimes forget that while they work closely with the EMs on game planning, they are still players, and by volunteering they take themselves away from much of the action for the weekend.

Thanks as well to the Unit Commanders РConor in the 25th Light Infantry, and Conor in the second Airborne, Richard in the IVth International Brigade, and Wojciech in the Heavies. Wojciech in particular should be recognised for coming on board with only a few weeks to go and putting huge energy into organising his unit.

There are a whole load of individual players who made stand out contributions to the game as well. I want to recognise a few:

  • Pat of course for his amazing performance as the priest all weekend.
  • Nigel Murphy from Cork Airsoft for the work as the D2A liaision with amazing props (lets hope he never goes into business as a counterfeiter).
  • The ISOA for giving us the use of the Hummer and the chopper which really raised the bar for the game.
  • The lads from TSK in Belfast for their twin RPK packing Landrover.
  • Robert for taking on the role of the butcher, and then acting unhinged in it.
  • The OSER (secret police) guys for being insane, and occasionally more of a threat to their own side than the enemy.
  • Thanks as well to Shane, for ideas and support at a distance.

Finally thanks to all of you – the players. you turned up, got stuck in and didn’t let the occasional problems, or threat of messy weather distract you from having a great time. In a MilSim like Rionegro you get out what you put in, and almost everyone put in an awful lot. you were a pleasure to organise a game for.

So what happens next? The two big things to be done are first to complete an after action report trying to shed some light on what happened all weekend. That takes a bit of work to pull together – getting accounts from EMs, UCs and players. Secondly I need to gather feedback on the game – what went well, what didn’t, and what you would like to see differently in the future. My next post will be on how to submit that.

And then there is the question of Rionegro 2014. It takes about 6 months to pull this event together, so I am going to enjoy some down time for the moment. Come back to me instead in the new year…

* I moved to Austria this week and only got broadband again on Friday.

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