Lens of History (66): Wargaming the Abyssals

STEC Archives, Print Document Division
Curator signature: [CLASSIFIED]
Format:  Print Media – DECLASSIFIED under [REDACTED], [REDACTED]
Special Documents Division – [REDACTED]
Time (if known): [CLASSIFIED, pre-war]

Editor’s Note: 

War is always unpredictable. However, it’s interesting to think that we seemed to have gotten more right than wrong for this case… Maybe those long, drawn-out wargaming sessions really did help?

Note: This is an automatically transcribed audio transcript of [CLASSIFIED], which is automatically produced in accordance to STEC’s data archival policies in relation to [Special Documents Division – [REDACTED]], item number [CLASSIFIED]. 

It’s always a wonderful occasion for me to arbitrate – every time we run this, I enjoy seeing what the best of our teams can come up with, be it creativity in terms of the scenarios envisioned or our response to it.

In one word: YES.

I think it is perfectly sensible to design the Abyssals here as an entity that focuses solely on STEC & other Anti-Abyssal forces, in lieu of their ordinarily observed mode of operation of wanton destruction. In that light, I consider the sudden attack on STEC bases and the attempted encirclement of our island bases to be perfectly in line with the purpose of these exercises.

You are fully green to proceed.

One thing that is important for us is that we must not grow complacent before making “full contact” with the enemy. I stress this in every meeting in which I have an advisory role, and I will stress it again here. While it is true that over the last decade in particular we have built significant experiences in fighting the Abyssals that appear, this is not necessarily going to be true going forward. It is therefore safer for us to continually consider every possibility and make plans in accordance to it. Yes, it’s more work on all of us, but this is a matter where we can never be too cautious.

Is it true that the Abyssals prioritize causing causalities? Thus far, yes.

Is it true that they appear to prioritize population centers or have a fixation towards “life”? Thus far, yes. I will also add that we have some idea as to why this is the case.

Is it true that they have on many occasions neglected the shipgirls sortied in response, placing “collateral damage” at a higher priority than even what we would assume to be the highest priority (i.e. fighting shipgirls)? Thus far, also yes.

This is precisely why we need to remain cautious. Yes, we develop SOPs that are very sensible and practical, but we are also in a relatively “easy” period, with everything more or less playing by our playbook. I think it’s probably not a good idea to think that the enemy that can literally “warp” units into our reality is somehow going to be content with following that either.

On the specific topic at hand, this is my reading of it.

OPFOR has correctly identified a major constraint of our forces in terms of basic positioning. Deployment and redeployment takes time, and we have very limited rapid deployment capabilities for larger forces. As such, it is eminently plausible where we respond to an Abyssal strikeforce in our typical fashion to find that it is a feint and their real goal is to isolate and destroy STEC assets as we commit the bulk of our forces towards their designated zones.

I think it is very fair to propose that the Abyssals have a good “reading” on how much stuff we have and what we can put onto the field. It is also very fair, in my view, that while it is less likely for them to identify the physical location of Avalon base – we’ve had plenty of experiences on this specifically – it is very fair of them to be aware of what Avalon can send out, and plan accordingly. 

Notice how OPFOR has placed the Abyssal formations in a way where they are just “out of reach” of Avalon’s fast-strike forces, but are still close enough where a concerted effort could be made towards our HQ sector. Yes, we can see them coming – but moving our units around will take time, and a few hours of difference in terms of whether or not we can redeploy to tip the balance of battle could be life or death. 

I’ll save the critique for when we complete the exercise (I sign off on these too – not just the instructors!), but I think you may have already realized the error you’ve committed here. The current force deployment is objectively, the “right” one in accordance to our doctrine. However, you see how they’ve managed to nullify essentially the entire reserve force we have – since we’re now placed in a situation where moving any of these units incur significant risk? See how we’re essentially forced to be responding to their movements? 

Yeah. This is how they can take big chunks of our strengths out of the fight – without us losing a single man and without them shooting a single round. 

Situation’s not ideal, but that’s exactly why we run these things. For what it’s worth I’ve got a few ideas and have already settled on one, but I’m looking forward to seeing what you do in response. 

Best of luck!