First off, this series is being done as a bit of a lark as wargaming has absolutely nothing to do with Christmas so if anyone is offended, please just stop reading now.

On the 8th day of Christmas War Gaming my true love gave to me…

8 Viet Cong Hiding

Fire in the Lake: Insurgency in Vietnam is a treatment of the Vietnam War and deals with not only the combat aspect but the political struggles between the US, ARVN, the VC and the NVA. The game is based on a command and special activity system where each faction has a set of abilities to wage war their own unique way. The game is Card Assisted (as compared to Card-Driven) with the cards setting the turn order each turn and offering each of the two sides a special event that aids them or hurts their enemies. The game is a hybrid euro game that will feel comfortable to traditional gamers but the mechanics and strategy will take several plays to master. 

The Viet Cong or VC for short are the insurgent faction in Fire in the Lake and they are trying to develop their bases in the country side so they can attract soldiers to fight back against the American and ARVN efforts to pacify their resistance. The VC use their Rally Operation to increase their presence in various spaces. The Rally Operation costs the VC one of their Resources per space in which they are Rallying. The Rally Operation allows the VC player to place a new Guerilla unit (represented by a light blue hexagonal piece) or they can take the Operation in a space where there are already 2 Guerilla units to replace them with a new base (represented by a light blue wooden disc). Once a space contains a base, the Rally Operation changes slightly as it allows the placement of Guerilla units up to the total of population of the space (found in the gray squares located under the region name) and number of bases found there. Once the VC get a foot hold in a space, they can multiply their forces quickly to get a large enough group to move out into connected regions and onto Lines of Communication consisting of roads and rivers to wreak havoc and place Sabotage markers to affect future income and also perform Terror Operations to reduce Support of the Americans and ARVN.

In the picture above you can see that there are 8 Hidden VC spread out among the provinces of Kien Phong, Tay Ninh, Binh Tay-Binh Thuan and Quang Duc-Long Khanh and the City of Saigon. Being Hidden is what protects a Guerilla unit from attacks by American and ARVN Troops. If they are Hidden, meaning they are shown with their embossed star symbol not showing, the US and ARVN Troops must first perform a Sweep Operation, which means to move into a province and turn over these Hidden units, and then in a subsequent turn to perform an Assault Operation to remove them.

If you are interested in Fire in the Lake: Insurgency in Vietnam, you can order a new 3rd Printing for $89.00 from the GMT Games website at the following link:

You can catch up on the posts in this series to date at the following links:

A Spotter in a Smokestack – Saipan: The Bloody Rock

2 Bridges Blowing – Holland ’44: Operation Market Garden

3 Blockade Runners Running – Kaiserkrieg! The Great War 1914-1918

4 Moudjahidate Defending – The Red Burnoose: Algeria 1857

5 Sherman Tanks – Sherman Leader: The World War II Ground Combat Solitaire Strategy Game

6 Miami Warriors Assaulting – Kekionga!: A Dark and Bloody Battleground, 1790

7 Landing Craft Landing – D-Day at Tarawa