Giving your Airsoft team the ability to move like a team
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Last month I talked about how to organize your team, now that we have established a baseline of what we are working with, I am able to slowly walk through the basics of tactics and move you through how to utilize advanced tactics on the battlefield. Again the advanced milsim tactics are only going to be successful if you have a team following the orders form the Squad leader and working together as a team.
The first thing your team is going to need to master, is the different types of formations you can move and hold in. Reacting to contact is one thing but you need to know how to patrol and get to your objectives in a safe and secure way so if you do encounter an attack you have the ability to easily counteract what the enemy was trying to do. Your basic means of movement formations are the File and Wedge. The file is when you and your teammates move in a single file line, one behind the other. This formation is used for very thick brush and has great security on you flanks but very little security to your front and rear. The other main formation is the Wedge. With a squad sized team you will actually have 2 small wedges where fire team will form a V shape and the second fire team will form another V shape behind them walking in the same direction. The wedge gives you great Flank and front security, but still limited rear security.
The biggest and most important thing your team needs to practice and learn is how to get on line. Whenever you encounter an attack this is always the first step to reaction, Getting On Line. This is where all your soldiers will run to the fire team leader or squad leader and get in a horizontal line together facing the enemy. This is now where the Squad leader is going to make the decision on what needs to be done, break contact or start a Squad Attack. Having all his men in one large line getting in the prone or taking cover and returning fire to the enemy lets him gauge the situation at hand and then easily issue orders because everyone is right there.
After coming in contact the Squad leader will assess the situation and decide what needs to be done. In the US Military we use a 3:1 ratio. We will not attack unless we have 3 coalition to every 1 enemy we have come in contact with. So if the squad leader feels he does not have the firepower and manpower to defeat the enemy he may make the decision to break contact. One of the main methods of breaking contact is the Australian Peel. This is where you will bound backwards with your team taking turns laying suppressive fire down on the enemy. As one guy runs backwards everyone is firing to the enemy, once he gets behind everyone and lays down and starts to fir himself, the next guy starts to retreat backwards and goes behind him. This is designed to have the team suppress the enemy as they pull back.
Do not look at breaking contact as retreating, later on I will explain how to do a baited ambush or diversion attack in which you can use the breaking contact as a trap for your enemy. This just means you want to pull back for a bit and give you Team leaders and Squad leader the ability to possibly formulate a new plan.
On the other end of the spectrum is the basic squad attack move. When the squad leader decides it is time to go after the enemy and attack them he can use the basic squad attack method. This should start with the whole squad on line suppressing the enemy. One fire team will stay on line facing the enemy and continuing to fire at them in hopes to keep their heads down and their attention drawn. The second fire team will then get up and sprint to the enemy’s flanks either right or left, and then get on line as well. So now you have an “L” shape of fire being thrown at the enemy. If you outnumber your enemy this quickly overwhelms them and you will see if properly executed is very successful.
There is a ton of detail that goes into these moves but these are the brief and general breakdowns in attempt to try and get the basics drilled in and laid down.
Stopping in a Hostile Area
If you are behind your opponent’s lines and you are in a danger area of being found or ambushed and need to stop for whatever reason you need to know how to be secure when you stop. The main and easiest means of having a secure stop, is a tight 360. Make sure all your guys form a circle facing out while your squad leader and fire team leaders meet in the middle of the circle. You don’t want to leave any portion uncovered and let someone sneak up on your team because you had your backs to them.
Okay now that we have some basic movement techniques and organization to the team we can start getting down right sneaky with some very fun and cool tricks to play on your opponents. Be sure to check the next issue of AI for the beginning of Advanced Mil-Sim Tactics. If you have any questions feel free to email me at Donnie@ai-mag.com