With games of Spectre: Operations, the focus is often on Tier 1, SOF or other more highly trained forces. We feel that the fun and challenge of playing as a Militia force is sometimes overlooked, so we thought it would be informative and inspiring to publish a series of articles on building and playing as a militia or otherwise less well trained and/or equipped force. This series of articles will culminate in a ‘Launching an Insurgency’ PDF, giving you the framework for structuring, funding and expanding (or staying under the radar) your Insurgency or Criminal Network in Campaign games of Spectre: Operations.
For this first article we will focus on Mentoring:
Mentoring the Militia
Mentoring, or ‘advising’ is usually associated with highly trained forces (usually ‘Western’ SOF or equivalent) providing training and direction to a less capable National armed forces, ‘friendly’ militia or other non-state actors. Lawrence of Arabia, the OSS and SOE are iconic examples of this, along with more contemporary innumerable examples from the GWOT, Libya, Syria, Africa etc.
Countering this, experienced and capable adversaries have been recorded filling the same role in ‘mentoring’ or otherwise training enemy forces. Veterans of conflicts in the Caucuses, Balkans and Africa in particular have been present in Afghanistan, Yemen, Syria and Iraq among others (those interested should read David Kilcullen’s The Accidental Guerrilla and Out of the Mountains).
In Spectre: Operations, the rules for Mentoring can be used by Professional and Elite Tier models to enhance a squad they join (full rules found on Page 62 of the rule book). We’ve played multiple games recently with Insurgent PMC models using the ‘Professional’ profile leading large 10,15 or even 20 man squads of militia (one model can only mentor 6 others, so make sure you have enough to cover and maybe spares to allow for targeted casualties). This combination of Professional mentoring elevates the Militia to use the ‘Trained’ Tier, but will still allow the Militia to benefit from their bonus of +1 command for being over 10 models and a further +1 for every additional 5 models over 10. This bonus to command gives a real resilience to suppression and suddenly makes you quite an intimidating force to face.
The bonus to command will also allow you to reliably be able to use the Breakdown Command (P28) to split into smaller squads, for flexibility while still retaining some bonuses after. These can then be manoeuvred and used to play more tactically than a Militia player usually would be able to.
Another Command action that is worth considering is utilising the Fire Control Order Command (P30). This allows an entire squad to focus accurate fire onto an enemy target (you nominate the target in the command phase, then shoot in the combat phase). Each shot is targeted, so loses any Rapid Fire/Automatic fire or Sustained fire rules, but you make every shot using the squad leaders shooting statistic (in this case, a Professional Mentor), with a further +1 modifier AND each shot causing 2 points of suppression. This can very effectively cause a large volume of suppression in one turn, which is a key mechanic in Spectre: Operations. A variation of this tactic is to use this Command Action on a squad with a number of RPGs or other anti-armour weapons to target enemy vehicles or fortified positions. The hit and suppression bonus is enough to effectively counter enemy amour.
We hope this aids you in your fight!