Tuesday, 19 October 2010

Untied Kingdom: The War in 2011


Inspired by Crisis in Alcovia and England Prevails I've decided to set about creating my own modern warfare campaign setting. It will be set in the UK (primarily because ever modern-period gamer in Britain that I know off has at least some UK army miniatures). The premise is that no-one outright won the British elections in 2010 (as in real-life) not simply because of the vote, but because of allegations of vote-fixing and corruption ala Florida in the USA. The labour party (still under the leadership of Gordon Brown) boycotts parliament in protest when the Tories and Liberals form a new coalition government.

As the year progresses, the Tory public spending cuts (25% across the board) combined with rising fuel prices, strikes and an outbreak of swine flu (with which the weakened National Health Service cannot cope) leads to increasing unrest until a popular rebellion breaks out, led by militant elements of the Unions and the Labour Party. The Royal Ordinance factory in Leeds is quickly captured by rebel forces (dubbed “The Reds” by the Tory government for their labour-party leanings and the red armbands they wear). A series of disproportionate responses by the Tory-Liberal government drives elements of the armed forces to defect to the Reds.

Meanwhile, in Scotland, First Minister Alex Salmond (of the Scottish National Party) uses the opportunity afforded by this civil unrest to issue his long-awaited referendum on Scottish independence. With a definite mandate from the voters, he declares Scottish to be a sovereign nation, ordering Scottish elements of the armed forces to remain neutral in the Red-Tory conflict (or to withdraw from it if already engaged) and return to Scotland. Meanwhile, he has Non-Scottish units North of the Border confined to barracks. Many Scottish units obey his “return home” command (including forces based in Germany, Afghanistan and the Falklands), others do not. Meanwhile, a small force of Unionists forms around the charismatic Lt. Col Edge (formerly of the Royal Scots Regiment) and enter the war as an anti-independence, pro-UK faction.

This gives us six factions to game with: The Reds, the Government Forces (known as Tories or “Blues”), the Scottish Government Forces (known as “Scot-Gov”) and the Unionists (pro-UK Scots) being the obvious four. The fifth group will include “neutral” parties trying to limit the damage to UK infra-structure (such as a small RN task-force defending the North Sea Oil Fields from all factions for “posterity”). Finally, we have the inevitable NATO or UN led peacekeeping forces, caught in the middle (as usual) and probably manipulated by the remaining five actions for their own purposes.

I'll record the campaign on a blog of the same title, here, but it will be a while before I get round to setting it up. My fellow war gamers might have plenty of appropriate (“painted”) miniatures, but I sure as hell don't.

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