These were the HIGH COMMAND orders for participants: “TOP SECRET! You are ordered to report for duty at 14.00 hrs on Saturday 7th August at Laem Hin jetty. Uniforms and weapons will be issued, with a full mission brief for each unit. You are requested to wear light clothing with combat boots or trainers; there is a strong likelihood that these will get wet and perhaps muddy, so be prepared…. Standard combat rations will be provided throughout the mission (water/soft drinks). Once the operation is complete, all combatants will retire for R&R..
The Mission for ‘Phuket Punishers’: Should you choose to accept it; is to proceed to Heartbreak Island (aka Ko Maprao Noi), under cover with local fisherman in long-tails. The element of surprise being on your side, it is anticipated you will make the beach unopposed. Once your force has disembarked, the occupiers must be eliminated and the missile silo destroyed. The unit is authorized to use extreme force in the execution of this mission. Strong resistance is to be expected. NO PRISONERS TO BE TAKEN!
The mission for ‘Fireballs’: We will not be deflected from our objective of total control of this region. Your command has complete faith in your abilities and morale. Our intelligence suggests that an amphibious assault can be expected sometime over the next 12 hours. It is not clear how this will be carried out, so the utmost vigilance is required to protect your missiles. The missiles must be protected, and remain operational at all costs.
Weapons inventory: 1. Marita Machine Guns, each with 800 rounds of ammunition, in 8 magazines. 2. Bolt action rifles each with 15 magazines of 10 rounds in each.
Rules of Engagement: Each member of the unit will be set with 2 lives in the weapons, each with ammunition as above. When a player is hit for the first time the rifle emits an “Uggghhhh”, freezes for three seconds (when it cannot fire) and automatically resets. The second time the player is hit the rifle emits and “AARRRRGH” and all displays light up with “DEAD” displayed on the LED display on the gun. When “killed” the casualty must return to the base where a marshal will reset and load the player, ready to go back into action. Each time a player is shot it will be recorded by the marshal, becoming part of the score…..”
If you haven’t fully realised yet, these were just games not real war, hence ‘war-games’. There were however real team-building benefits to be gained, for visiting Meetings Incentives Conventions or Exhibitions or MICE groups, and any companies or clubs, in Phuket and Thailand, as Nigel Burt, Team Building & Activities Manager, Oriental Events, briefed Phuketindex:
- Leadership development. A junior member of staff can be put in command of the unit, develop his/her own ideas of defense or attack, manage his/her unit to achieve their goal.
- Communication is encouraged as the unit has to work together to get the desired result.
- Tactical planning, again bringing the group into the decision making process, working out objectives and on how best to use their resources to advantage.
- Adaptability, coping with changing situations as the game develops.
- Team Spirit; it’s damn good fun!
Phuketindex went along to film the fun and follow the participants from Laem Hin jetty, just north of Phuket City, out to the battle zone of Ko Maprao Noi (Small Coconut Island with more cashew nuts than coconuts) aka Heartbreak Island – but no hearts, cashews or coconuts were harmed in the heat of battle.
The two teams were formed by willing volunteers in the local hotel and media trade:
‘Phuket Punishers’, the eventual winners, were led by Commander ‘Braveheart’ (heroine of the day) aka Patima, along with colleagues Subin & Fang from Blue D.Zine, Jody (who lost 11 lives winning the purple helmet award) from Phuket Post, Boom and Kritsada from Merlin Beach Resort, Grace from Serenity Resort & Got from Moevenpick Resort;
‘Fireballs’, the occupiers, were led by Alan (hero of the day) along with colleagues Kate and Jazz from the Quest at Laguna, Tang formerly of Six Senses, Kate and Na from The Chedi resort, Kan from Novotel Patong & more from the French Resistance?
They put up heavy resistance over two battles, but the Punishers prevailed capturing the target twice; but all’s fair in love and war, as everyone retired ‘dead or alive’ back to a floating restaurant, to celebrate and exchange war stories and pictures.
Many thanks to Tony, war correspondent, for his Island Life photos also on http://picasaweb.google.com/island.life.photos/OrientalEventsIslandStorm1TheBattleToRetakeCashew#
Also many thanks to THE HIGH COMMAND at Oriental Events Co., Ltd, 101/10 By-pass Square, Moo1, Chalermprakiat Ror 9 Road, Kathu Phuket 83120 Tel: +66 (0)76 249 129, 249 591, Fax: +66 (0)76 429 130 email@example.com