This is my third year playing Synergy's own D-Day game, the second year as Axis General. This year's event may not have gone as smoothly as previous years have, but I can't really complain. Synergy has consistently offered fair prices, a great field to play on, and friendly staff for all their events. Yet again Synergy has provided us with the opportunity for which to not only play our favorite sport, but to honor those who fought and died for the freedom of our country. Thus, recreating possibly one of the most infamous battles that our country had been involved is our way of paying respect to the soldiers who died that day. To put yourself in the shoes of those men and experience a small fraction of the fear and uncertainty they dealt with on that day is a fitting way to remember them. For this I am grateful.
The day began for me at 5am Monday morning. I didn't have the best planned logistics for getting 5 guys with all their gear crammed into a midsized sedan for a 2 hour trip. But I have to say we did get there, just not on time, and for this I apologize. Once we arrived to the field I surmised that I wasn't the only general of an army showing up late, and for this I will thank Tangus999 (the Allied general) for taking some of the blame for the lateness of the game.
After the morning briefing, we took the field and prepared for the game to start. I stopped to encourage my guys stationed at the forward position and headed back to the German headquarters. By the time I got there, the siren blew and the game was on. The eruption of hundreds of paintball markers firing was loud and heavy, even at my position at the back of the field. One of these years I'll actually get to witness it, but it sounded impressive!
For Synergy's version of this scenario, heavy emphasis has been placed on a point value for capture of the generals. For this reason, I made every effort to stay in play. With the exception of some time spent in the German HQ respawn area to take my mask off and recoup, I spent a lot of time in play fielding questions, giving orders, and waiting for missions to be handed down. For the most part I was either defending our headquarters (which sadly didn't see much action) or at Fort Synergy witnessing Kry0 launch rockets at the Allies with a joyous glee borderline on insanity. After our first mission was handed down, to locate and recover ammo crates, I designated a couple teams to go on a search mission and head to the fort to get some action.
I'd have to say that this next part was probably the most exciting part of the game for me. When I got to Fort Synergy there were probably 40 of us inside and about the perimeter. At approximately noon, about an hour before lunch break, the Allied were able to take ground and make their way back to the fort. We were taking fire from all angles. In a testament to the fort's design, there weren't a whole lot of positions one could take up and not have at least one firing lane to guard from. In the course of the hour we took a heavy beating, and the dead players were rerouted from the respawn inside the fort to the one further back at headquarters because there were so many of us eliminated. We went from about 40 to less than 10 players defending the fort, with the Allied still hot and heavy about our perimeter. I had put in several calls to Total Resistance and NEOSMUT for support and was anxiously awaiting retrieval. My main concern at this point was for an extraction so that I could make my way back to base and receive the next set of mission objectives. When it looked as if we were about to lose our position to Allied, we got the call that NEOSMUT was on hand and ready for an extraction. With perfect form and execution, I was guarded from enemy fire, led through the thick underbrush towards the German HQ with no casualties in the squad. A lone Allied player wandering through the woods was eliminated rather unceremoniously for having the misfortune of being along our path and I was deposited at my base within minutes of the game breaking horn.
After all the dust settled, it turned out that the Axis Army had bested the Allies in this, an alternate universe version of the events at Normandy. But there's always next year…
I want to thank NEOSMUT, Total Resistance, the Pentagon Crew, Funnyman and his crew for all coming out and providing excellent support for the Axis army. I'd also like to thank Cleveland Hybrid, Odyssey for putting up a fight. Lastly I'd like to thank Tangus999 and the Devils Lot for stepping up and leading the Allied Army. After all, you can't have a game without an opponent. Hand of Fate salutes you all!
There are so many other highlights to the game, and players that really brought the scenario to life that it'd be a shame to try to list them all and miss a few. If you're interested in finding out more, please register for and visit the www.clevelandpaintball.com forums to read the highlights. If you participated in the game then help us relive the day with your own version of what happened.