Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Rogue Stars Part 2, AAR , The Rescue





The Setting: 
In some distant backwater on the fringes well-traveled  space, The Crew of the Leif Erickson, a band of motley humans and aliens squeak out a meager existence as trade transporters, scavengers,  hired guns, sellers of unique antiquities and data brokers.  In the mainstream world of interstellar mega corporations, they are simply Pirates.

The crew has intercepted message about the existence of little known research facility on a nearby low tech world, used by the infamous Mega Corp:  Optimus Pharmaceutical Systems (OPS)  as a designer drug testing facility.  The message reads events have gone terribly wrong there, and the lone surviving scientist needs an immediate EVAC. OPS response has been to destroy all research and prepare for an orbital strike from their inbound cruiser- Demeter, which is 48 hours out. The Scientist, unhappy with his expendability has powered down the facility and its location beacon and has transmitted on open channels offering 10,000 CR to anyone for an EVAC.  The Crew of Leif Erickson, have responded and have headed in for the quick score to grab the Scientist and get out.  Little do they know, OPS has already sent a local security squad on planet in to eliminate the problem and power up the facility for when the Cruiser arrives.

The Crew of the Leif Erickson  200XP
Theme: Pirates
Tactical Discipline: Determined.


Crew of the Leif Erickson ,Clockwise L-R,  Taturo, Mason, Clark, Najidi, The Sorak.  



Mason- Leadership 1, Veteran, Fast Draw, Danger Sense.
Accurate Molecular Slug Thrower, Vibroblade, Kevlar Jacket, Refraction Field Harness.

Taturo- Big , Tough 1, Weapon Master 2
Cyber Monowire Blade, Flamer Pistol, Combat Dress

Najidi-  Stealth 2, Difficult Target, Fast, Tech 1
Assault Rifle, Light Combat Dress

Sorak- Reptiloid, Reactive
Plasma Rifle, Knife, Kevlar Jacket.

Clark- Martial Arts 2, Chucker 1,
Molecular Slug Thrower, 2 Frag Grenades, Light Combat Dress.  



 
Optimus Pharmaceutical Systems Security Team, our "Star Cops", The Lieutenant is the unhelmeted one.
  

OPS Corporate Security Team  200 XP
Theme: Star Cops
Tactical Discipline: Opportunity Fire

Lieutenant- Leadership 1, Veteran, Marksman 1, Reactive.
Laser Rifle, Patrol Baton, Combat Dress, Night Visor, Electromagnetic Shackles

Corporal- Medic 2, Tech 1
Laser Rifle, Patrol Baton, Combat Dress, Night Visor

Private X 3
Laser Rifle, Patrol Baton, Combat Dress, Night Visor

While I went into the game with particular narrative in mind, the book gives 20 missions and suggests you weave your won narrative based on rolled mission, location and complications..
I pre planned this mission based on what we wanted to run but for XP purposes we use a book mission to stay on track with the level of characters and games intent.

The Mission: is #3- Bodyguard Work (framed by me as a Rescue/Evac)


The Scientist, in Lab 2
Pirates = Defender and the Star Cops = Attackers.  
The Scientist =Civilian VIP.
The VIP is a noncombatant  (but Medic 3, Tech 2 and Light Combat Dress)  starts in lab 2 and activates with defenders once he comes within 1” of defending team member.
Defenders must get VIP to exaction point get 8 XP if he gets out unharmed, 3 XP if he’s OOA,  and 1 XP for any enemy or Zombie put OOA.
Attackers must Kill VIP (6 XP) and (3XP) turn on main power.  And 2 XP for each Pirate put OOA  and 1XP for each Zombie put OOA
All team members must be moved to EVAC point for their team anyone left in the base OOA or not is considered killed.

The Location: is  #16 Laboratory, it’s a designer drug lab so well use ‘Superfood” from the options and just call any designer drugs seized as “stress reduction” drugs there will be 5 tokens to represent these on the board

There is also one set of lockers and 3 small crates and one large red crate (2 rolls) that can be searched on the board using the container chart on page 39 to determine contents.

Complication: I am using my own here.  Plague Zombies!  , The lab was of course testing/developing a bio weapon, the virus of which was leaked into the lab by now deceased scientist who morals got the better of him, The remaining scientist, after realizing the entire lab was lost engaged a decontamination protocol which bathed the base in lethal Radiation which is killed most of the infected staff, There are 6 Zombies that survived the decontamination, 


3 Techs – Space Suits – Cargo Bay
2- Soldiers- Light Combat Dress- Main Hall
1 – Scientist- no armor.- outside Lab doors

Zombies are Non Reactive, Tough 1,  and all melee attacks are Damage 2 count as primitive attacks in terms of armor penetration but don’t have the -1 to hit. ,  Zombies suffer no morale, or stress and All get to try to react once for each teams failed activation dice before they other teams reactions. They cannot “seize the initiative” but automatic get a free action on critical failures

Any Character wounded by a Zombie must pass Endure check TN 10 or be infected.  Infected characters may have the wound or wounds removed via first aid which removes the infection.  Any Infected characters who try to activate turn into zombies on their first failed activation
Any Character put OOA by a Zombie, rises as a zombie as soon as initiative switches between players.

The Environment- Standard Atmosphere and Gravity.

The Power is out so everything darkness in effect -2 to shoot, spot and terrain rolls to those without night visors. Due to LED emergency lighting LOS is 10”

While power is out all doors must be forced open with damage or wired to open with a Tech TN 10 check. When the power is on, all door automatic open when approached

Reactivating  the power is complex task Tech TN 12/2 
.
All Zombies in darkness more than 8” away are assumed to be hidden., requiring a spot check

Intelligence-  The OPS squad beats the TN 16 on the  intel checkmeaning they know about the pirates and there capabilities.

(Activation Notations are often written as (2/1,  0/2, etc.. 2/1 for instance meaning the character tried to activate 3 times , rolling 3 dice...passing 2 successes and one failure)


Initiative goes to the Crew of Leif Erickson.

Pirate Leader Mason activates first with 3 dice

Rolling 3 Successes

Sees a Zombie in the Corner by the Big Red Crate

(play example)

Fast Draw, Free,  Aim  (1) Shoot (2)   Aim +1 Accurate Weapon +1  -2 Darkness = 10 Misses. Argh.
Normal shot, need 12 , due to darkness…rolls…17!  5 over TN  pick the Torso
Damage Die is a 9 – 4 weapon damage +1 Space Suit +1 , +1  Tough  = 7
2 pins, 1 wound , Knocked Prone.

Taturo (Teraton)  rolls 3 Dice…
Rolling 3 Successes
Moves X 2 to engage prone Zombie in melee…
Melee Attack + 7, Weapon Master +2, Big +1 , Zombie Prone -2, 2 Pins -2
Hits with a12! +7 = 19….Damage Die is a 3!...  its OOA…decapitated we say!!...

Clark tries to activate rolling 3 dice!
 1 Successes and 2 Failures,  It could not last now, could it?




 All Zombies get a chance to react ( needs a 12) anytime a character fails to activate.
In this case they are responding to 2 failed activations.

Zombies Reactions  
Closest (Ghoul) Zombie to Clark 19!  Sprints 6” toward Clark
Pale Zombie in Cargo Bay Fails to react
Soldier Zombie Helmet 13! Activates walks 2” into hallway
Soldier Zombie Bad Haircut  fails to activate
Scientist Zombie Fails to activate.



Zombies Reactions  (failed activation die 2)
Ghoul Zombie Fails to react
Pale Zombie Fails to react
Soldier Zombie Helmet Activates walks 2” randomly  East! Toward Void Corp
Soldier Zombie Bad Haircut  Activates walks 2” randomly into hall.
Scientist Zombie Fails to activate

OPS squad 2 Reactions
Corporal-  Reacts tries TN 10 at +1 to open doors- Fails
Lieutenant-  Reaction succeeds Tries to Steal Initiative
TN 16,  +1 Leadership +6 Stress on Pirate Team
 Rolls 10! success



OPS Squad INITIATIVE
Pirate Stress Cleared

The firefight continues with Pirates battling there zombies in the cargo bay while the OPS squad is tied up trying to enter the base.

The Pirates take out their Zombies first, not with a close call of one giving a good bite to Taturo but its doesn’t end up getting thru his armor (no wound) and result is critical melee response from the big Pirate splattering the last of the Plague victims on the wall. The gives them a bit more time to position they break off into two teams,  the Melee oriented characters  (Taturo, Clark) move toward the OPS team (who is still tied up fighting zombies ) thru the center of the Cargo Bay, the other move down the north hall headed toward the lab and the Scientist.

The OPS squad makes it to the Cargo storage area but the more armored zombie soldiers are hard to take down, they get involved in hand to hand, finishing the last Zombie with some well placed shot. By the time this resolves itself the Pirates are set up at the end of the hall and directly across from the OPS squad waiting to strike


Leading to this exchange.

OPS SQUAD INITIATIVE (pirate stress cleared)

OPS LT rolls 3 Dice, 3/0

The Lieutenant doesn’t really have LoS on any Pirates without exposing himself to a lot of potential fire, He moves to cover and doesn’t use is other 2 Successes only picking up 1 stress

Corporal rolls one die to activate and succeeds she moves a couple inches in to get cover from the doorway for the oncoming fire fight, 1 stress

Private B rolls 2 dices to activate 1/1 

Taturo tries to react and does with an 11, he then tries to force the door and does with a 16 (1 stress)

Private B now seeing the the hulking armored pirate in his LoS turns and quickly fires- missing (4) picking up 1 stress.


Private C now tries to activate rolling three dice  but its 1/2 

Both Najidi and Mason take this as que to get themselves across the hall  both  make their reaction attempts  Najidi sprinting a  full 7 inches with fast , while mason stops to cover the hall from the other side ( 1 stress each)


Private C doesn’t want to get caught in Melee with Taturo so he backs off the door looking for cover (1 Stress)


Private A tries to activate now seeing Mason with cover in his LoS
He wants to shoot and move so he rolls three dice…2/1 
Mason wants to react by shooting first..but fails

Private A -takes a shot a Mason misses and runs forward along the wall, 2 stress.

(note : equipment use , changes outcome here)
OPS squad needs a break here so we are going to activate Private A this time due to stress he needs 12’s rolls a pair of 12’s   he takes an aimed shot at Mason..
In  heavy cover.  The Security grunt needs a 12  and rolls a 16, 4 over .   We pick arm since he’s only wearing a Kevlar the damage die is ‘4” bad news for the pirate leader he’s going OOA but he’s wearing a refraction field harness and rolls a 16 the laser is deflected…he got seriously lucky.


Private A is going to risk going again dropping a hail of fire on mason and rolls 2 dice 1/1
Mason makes the reaction and tough call, either play it safe and get the hell out of the way or steal the initiative at +9, Pirates play it safe and Mason drops back if the Lone OPS private advances they’ll have him a crossfire  (Mason picks up another 1 stress)

Private has lost line of sight to Mason,  The Private knows the Pirates don’t have there night vision using the ark he hides and moves 2 inches  (1 stress)

OPS LT activate 1/1  back off for better cover ,  and Initiative steal attempt fails
Private B activate  rolls 2 – 1/1  Pirates react and try again -Initiative stolen

This ambush went bad real fast for the Pirates..its just with combat dress and "tough" Taturo was very hard to put down..the dice just werent there.

PIRATE INITIATIVE  (OPS STRESS CLEARED)

(morale rolls team members on both sides starting going down, the tank character , lives up to his name)

Sorak activate 3/0  spots hidden and shoots Private A with his Plasma Rifle  putting him OOA with a good damage roll

OPS squad morale checks but the Corporal and Private 3 both pick up 1 pin and 1 stress

Taturo activates 2/1  moves and tries to shoot private B with his flamer pistol but gets shot doing so

Najidi activates  1 / 2  Moves to the Lab door , the scientist is in reach.

But subsequent OPS squad reactions result into Taturo getting shot up bad taking 4 pins and 3 wounds and getting knocked prone, he manages to get back up (using 2 of the team 4 determination tokens) rolling 1/1 with a critical managing to avoid reactions but cant act.
Najidi tries to activate again to get the lab door open rolls 3 dice  1 / 2  and initiative is stolen by OPS.

OPS INITIATIVE (pirate stress cleared)
OPS decides the best move now is to finish off the big guy, and get to cargo bay access corridor to be able to cover any escape attempts by scientist.

First thou they want to get the power on they’ll lose the darkness bonus they are enjoying but they not have time later to do it and they are a man down.

Corporal manages gets power on making the dual activation require tech roll but gives up a reaction in process that allows the now standing Taturo to back away to cover,



Additional failed OPS activation allow addition reactions resulting in throwing of a earlier  primed grenade the Private B down prone

Shots are exchanged private B goes OOA, Taturo ends up carring 6 pins , 4 wounds and his cyberweapon is damaged needing a complex task to repair (no time)

Corporal makes it to OOA private B and stabilizes him and starts carrying him to exit zone

Taturo runs(limps) back toward Cargo Vehicle.

Najidi gets door open makes it to scientist

Private C  lucky shot puts the Sorak OOA down the hall.

Pirates all make morale check, Najidi’s   is a 20 so removes all stress.

(right here we screwed up because when someone goes OOA initiative automatically switches sides but in the heat of the fight we missed it ended up happening on its own anyway)

Here the OPS Lt tries to activate  1/ 2 but gives up 2 reactions that result in very lucky reaction  rolls by the Scientist who sprints x 2

The OPS Lt tries to ambush him and almost does rolling 3 dice  2/1 but the failed activation gives Pirate Leader Mason the reaction he uses his teams other 2 determination tokens, make the reaction then succeeds in Stealing the Initiative with a

Team leaders face off.


PIRATE INITIATIVE.  ( OPS stress cleared.)

Mason activate x 3   3/0   Runs, aimed shot at OPS Lieutenant  +2  (acc weapon, aim)  rolls 11 +2 = 13 hit To Torso..Damage 4  armor 4
Damage Die is a 9,   2 pin , 1 wound, knocked prone.

The Rest of the Pirate turn looks like this:

Scientist tries to activate on a 12  1/1

Private C tries to react fails

Scientist sprints across the  hall

Najidi tries to activate x3 rolls 5,5,5  OOF  three OPS reaction attemps

LT tries to react fails on a 10 (needs an 11)

Corporal reacts 13  yes, moves and drops private B in evac zone , tries to react again – fails

Najidi g activates  again 2/1 
OPS Lieutenat tries to react fails on a 9…he just cant get up too wounded.

Najidi somehow finds time to search a crate here an finds needler pistol picks it up.


Pirate team is operating on high stress here

Mason manages to get across the hall and pick up the fallen Sorak and  start carry him toward the bay

Clark gives up 2 reactions that allow the OPS Lieutenant to get to his feet, but he manages to shut the cargo bay doors.

OPS Squad steals back initiative as Taturo tried to activate

Limping back to get the hell out of dodge, Orbital bombardment inbound.


OPS SQUAD INITIATIVE (pirate stress cleared)


OPS Lt 2 stress from reactions during the Pirate turn not to mention 5 pins and 1 wound
Tries to react 2/1

Games end rather non climatically as one the scientist get  a  sprint off a reaction and Mason had caries the Sorak to the cargo bay and Najidi made it across the hallway…all on reactions.

At which point OPS team concedes.

Retreating to fight another day.

The “Star Cops” needed a serious break couldn’t really do anything except have the Lieutenant  rally away all those pins and look for opening that never came.  Trying to chase the pirates down the back all exposed them to all kinds of fire and rushing the cargo against the guys with the grenades was a bad idea..


At The OPS squad realized they couldn’t catch the pirates, without potentially taking more losses
They’d rather recover their men and, let the Orbital bombardment do its job,

In retrospect the OPS team should have rushed the cargo bay to cut off the pirates escape from the get go, they spent way too much time dealing with zombies and never getting that far into the base at all.

XP rewards

Crew of the Leif Erickson –(Pirates)

Getting the Scientist out uninjured 8xp
3 Zombies , 2 OPS squad members  5 Xp

13 XP

The Sorak who was taken off the table OOA without being revived by a medic failed is TN10 endure roll so he died.

So the 13 XP can be divided among the surviving 4 crew..with no more than 7 going to any one character..

Pirates also recovered 2 Frag Grenades, a motion detector and a needler pistol.

OPS Security Squad (Star Cops)

Turning the Power on  3xp
3 zombies   3xp
1 Pirate KIA   2 XP

8 XP

The  OOA private (A) that went down first came off the table post game (we assume with the pirates gone they had no trouble reclaiming there man,  he does make the TN endure with an 11
So all the OPS squad survive.

OPS team recovered 3 doses ( 1 marker) of the Stress reduction drug..


Overall …I like the game a lot….need to play a few more mechanics are cool, I think the zombies just being roadblocks didn’t real do much no one of them managed to get into melee, while in previous test fight I ran they did. Just the odds of the dice.  The pirates seems to get around the zombie easier mainly because of position.

I also think 5 characters per side is quite a lot to run while its sounds like a few…I found 2 pirates I barely used and one them ended up dead…even a 3 vs 3 in this game would be interesting .
Tactically there is a lot going on with the game we barely scratched the surface of, the Star Cops needed to make way better use of Opportunity fire for sure, but we focusing mainly getting down the basics (why again I think the zombies were too much, I just have like 30 of them so I want to get some use..)

I’m going to run another smaller scenario coming up focusing on tactics and gameplay coming up but first I need to jump over to Fantasy for awhile and wrap up a few things…I’ll be back soon , I hope. In meantime go pick up Rogue Stars.
  
ESCAPE.









Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Rogue Stars Part I, A Review



Recently Osprey games has been cranking out rulebooks like crazy, and after the hit that is Frostgrave, why not?. One that recently caught my attention was Rogue Stars , a small scale Science Fiction themed skirmish game. Written by Andrea Sfiligoi, who is the man behind Songs of Blades and Heroes and Ganesha Games. Considering I have ton of Sci Fi figures and Terrain I rarely use and am familiar with the authors other games , was really all it took to get me to click "buy" over on Amazon.

Now while Song of Blades and Heroes never became my go to fantasy skirmish game for many reasons that I will not going into here, Rogue Stars is a much different game. A skill based game with a freeform turn system, that uses rotating “on the fly” turns based on one player voluntarily passing initiative or having stolen from him, via reactions to his failed activations.  The game also revolves on accumulated stress placed on characters through successful actions which push turns to the limit where you eventually have to pass in order to manage character stress.

If this sounds way complicated, it is at first.  Rogue Stars is, in its own way the antithesis of Frostgrave. While my 10 year old was rolling dice and playing Frostgrave  like anyone else within a couple hours , Rogue Stars is for someone who is familiar with complexity of different wargames and likes rules heavy RPG mashed into a Tactical Wargame.  Now that may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but it is mine, I rolled enough RPG dice playing Traveller and Alternity back in the day, I immediately get what the author is going for.

Now that is not to say the book itself is not without its flaws, Like many of these Osprey Wargame Books, they are all of similar length regardless of the need for content. I found the RS book at 64 pages at least 46 pages short.  So while character creation is covered in depth and good detail with all kinds of charts for Missions, Locations and Complications , and well wide selection of Themes for squads , equipment and skills, I found the core mechanic sections, jumbled , oddly layed out and somewhat confusing.  To really get a handle on the rules to where I could play without going crazy took numerous visits to Authors Facebook Page, The Rogue Stars Fan Page, and the Lead Adventure Rogue Stars Forum.

There is also a healthy errata sheet and immediate updates available at those locations. In end I am fine with it being a living document with currently a lot of interest, however  I think not really being an off shelf , ready to play product without alot of guessing rules intent Is really doing the game or Osprey any favors. 

  The book certainly need its front end reorganized a bit with a lot more play examples illustrated in detail. I also found it odd there is no section on “Movement” . Figure movement being so key to many a tactical to having the only mention of movement in game limited to Walk, Sprint and Run distances, some addition movement mention in some skills and equipment to be off putting, however after a test game I think this isn’t really necessary because the game doesn’t need it, it should just be spelled out early in the rules so you aren’t  referencing other games in the back of your head wondering  “how do I move”.

Despite these logistical shortcomings, Once I got a handle on it , I really enjoyed the game. A much different experience than the boardgame like feel of say Deadzone,  (which I also like and love the figures for, as I am using them here) .  I definitely think Rogue Stars is a game I will be returning too often.   I’ll save play mechanics for my After Action Report coming up in part II.  Let me close here with a quick recap.

Rogue Stars,  Osprey Publishing
Overall  **** 4 Stars out of 5.
Gameplay  ***** 5 Stars
Rulebook  *** 3 Stars

Pros- Fantastic skill based Character system, (no stats)  Great  mission layout and thematic details. Designed as a campaign style system. I love the old school RRG vibe the game is going for.  its also D20 which I like, (some wont as it characterized a too wide a number spread, but I think this is countered by the option to roll multiple dice)
Cons-  Mechanics are poorly laid out, lack of play examples , no quick reference sheet, relies  heavily on charts that need to be referenced,  three different live mechanics per character to be tracked , Stress, Pins and Wounds.

If you like old school Sci Fi Rpgs, like  Original Traveller, Gamma World, or Alternity, and have an itch for narrative sci fi skirmish game and with the time to wrap your head around it…this is for you.


If you are wondering what the hell I have been up to since October I’ll be back with more of that after I wrap up the Rogue Stars AAR.


I’ll leave you  with a couple shots from my AAR, which of course takes place on my Hirst Arts Space Station now augmented with Mantic terrain.








Tuesday, October 4, 2016

A Quite Fall


I have woefully, slipped away again from the blog. While I have been painting terrain and figures
for my large fantasy project, I just have not made time to get the photos done and I've lost the urge to do alot of  "WIP" posts. I am currently working on the castle from my "blackbarrow" table and its all Hirts Arts so its going slowly casting as I build ,  but the end is in sight. Most of my Summer going into the massive 8" fieldstone Tower that is key piece of the design.  I've also painted a dozen or so denizens of the town from adventurers to creatures to villagers and furniture for my Inn that I posted earlier this year. its quite the fun project, just far removed from the usual gaming related painting I do.

Speaking of Fantasy I wanted to give a shout out to Diehard Miniatures whose last miniatures are in my primed and modeled up que just waiting for the brush.  Diehards new kickstarters has begun focusing on Eru-Kin which are essentially classic Warhammer style lizard me in both Fantasy and Sci Fi settings. I was an Oldhammer player and ever got my Lizardmen going I would snatch up bunch of these. As is I am in one "add on" only pledge as I am looking at some Snakemen for a future project.
Anyway if this might interest you Diehard is solid company that delivers high quality on time, which is always a good thing when it comes to Kickstarters. You can out the newest KS here.



In other news Warlord Games Bolt Action 2nd Edition was released this month, I got my new rules a couple weeks ago, and I like what I read. Although I havent played yet, and not sure when I will.
My last tournament in the spring left a bad taste in mouth for tournaments overall. (not the game) and left me feeling in retrospect that maybe I am just over them. I've been doing them for 10 years and they are a ton of work. As I said about WFB years ago when that started sliding toward the abyss ( for me that was  just after I had a lousy time in an oversized 150 person WFB event ) If you are not having fun anymore its time to re-analyze how you spend your time.  Anyway, I've found myself unhappy with the last couple tournaments I have been in for Bolt Action, either through unfortunate games with strangers or just not being happy with handling and operation of the event. I certainly dont want to be "that guy" so Its time I take a breather. Unfortunately that means I miss my favorite event this year. Operation Sting. but truth be told alot of other real life circumstance were in the way as well so my remorse here about gaming is only part of the story.  I'm still going to try to flesh both my Axis (German) and Allied (Great Britian) forces for spring in case I want to take the plunge again. Hopefully I'll get a chance to try out the rules some point soon. moving onward always.

I hope to get back here soon with big updates, I'm working on it.



Sunday, July 10, 2016

Deadzone 2, Review and AAR.


Just in time for the end of month, I thought I'd  get my first stab at Deadzone 2 documented.  This wouldbe  the results of Mantic's latest Deadzone Kickstarter that was funded on April 6th, 2015. I was for the quarantine pledge and 14 months later it delivered safe and sound.

 I've only ever played a couple demo games of the Original Deadzone, acquiring a handful of models along the way as I liked the look of them for generic sci fi gaming. 18 months after my initial Deadzone trials, I find myself with a bunch of models, my Kickstarter pledge delivered and exactly 1 Deadzone 2 Demo under my belt played at Adepticon this year.

While Mantic has retooled and geared Deadzone 2 to be the boardgame-esque companion game to its new "Warpath" game system. ( a 40K competitor large format Sci Fi wargame, ) I do think Mantic somewhat missed the boat here. Originally Deadzone was  presented as Mantic's only Sci Fi wargame entry. Uniquely different from 40K  It had found itself a good niche. However it seems the resulting success of Kings of War, (almost entirely due to Games Workshop blowing up Warhammer Fantasy) somehow clouded  Mantic's judgement into thinking a 40K style entry could do similarly well and the "new" Deadzone sort of just got piled in with that.

While I am glad it did it as I could care less about Warpath, and I am kind of thinking alot of gamers who like the genre will not care either ,because if you want a game "like" 40K you just play 40K, Which leaves a a small percentage of outcasts that like the genre but don't like 40K , for whatever reason and want to invest in Warpath.

Regardless,  I like Deadzone 2, it reads quick , I like the mechanics with low model counts and a small board.  There no shortage of excellent terrain and models to be had, I've quickly found myself with 5 factions between trades, cheap buys on ebay and the Kickstarter. I now have Enforcers, Rebs, Plague, Veer Myn and Forge Fathers. not tons of models but enough I can field Deadzone teams for all 5 factions. It nice was  to actually play something with nice selection of Sci Fi models I've had for years. the fit is right.

Here is a walkthru of  my first actual game:. Factions are Enforcers Vs Rebs, on the new Industrial Terrain.
 I have some actual mantic models done here, mainly Rebs 5 of 8 models, but the Enforcers ,except for one , Pathfinder Sniper, are proxied by my Reaper Nova Corp  who seem to  fit right in. Terrain is all new from Kickstarter , with the exception of the grey command building which is from the Urban terrain set. Things are not totally done yet, I'm still getting into it but I modeled up the buildings and got the spray cans out a couple sundays ago..Here is how the game went:

The board- this is basic KS terrain set plus a couple Urban Sprues for the grey building.
  
Strike Teams at 150 points

Mission : Scour.

Enforcers

Sergeant- added Laser Rifle
Pathfinder Specialist- Sniper
Strider w/ Equalizer
3 Enforcers
Medi Pack

Enforcers (proxied Reaper Nova Corp, the Strider is a Robotech promo model from 2 year back)
  
Rebs

Commander with Sniper Rifle
Teraton
Sorak Specialist
Yndij Trooper added combat blades
4 Troopers
Medipack
Smoke Grenade
Frag Grenade
Ammo
AP Ammo
  

Rebs, a mix of Mantic and Reaper figures
Initiative:  5 Dice Recon Test, both Leaders have a 4+ recon value
Enforcers rolls 5 Successes
Rebs 3, Enforcers have initiative choose to deploy and go first.
Enforcer Strider and Sniper take Scout Moves
Reb Yndij makes Scout Move.


ROUND 1

TURN ENFORCERS
Command Dice, Enforcers roll 4 dice (+1 due to Tactician skill)
+1 Model and 3 Fight Dice,
Reroll the 3 fight dice.3 3 +1 Model,
Command Dice 2- +1 Model  2 Move Dice.

I activate the Strider who in a good postion thanks to its Scout move. It fires it massively powerful equalizer cannon at the Teraton who is partially visible, The Teraton ties the first shot with 1 success each, the Strider fires again this time the Teraton win 2 Success to 1.
So the shots miss.


Shoots and Misses...Teraton has more survive success than Strider had hits.

TURN REBS
Command Dice 5, (+2 for Tactician)
They get 2 Shoot. 1 move, 1 Splat, 1 Fight
Reroll Splat and Fight
2 Shoot, 1 Move, 1 Dice, +1 Model

Yndij Trooper fires rifle at Enforcer in open under bridge
3 Dice, +2 dice for open shot plus +1 dice for Elevated.  6 dice vs 3.

Yndij rolls a 8 and gets an extra dice ending with 5 success vs 0!! For the Enforcer.
The armor absorbs 1, but he takes 4 damage and is out.
Enforcer in foreground shot down by Yndij Trooper

Since Shooting is a short action and the model has not moved it fires again using the “fire for effect” ability of his rifle, if successful this can pin the troopers  this time at the two enforcers in the adjacent cube who have cover for the bridge strut  The Yndij gets 4 dice..while both enforcers get 3 Survive dice. ,  but enforcers get more successes so the burst of fire misses.


TURN ENFORCERS

Activate the Trooper that was just fired upon by Yndij,  Sprint Moves thru cube with Item recovering Item (ammo) on way.   I use the a +1 Model Dice to activate the already setup Pathfinder Sniper who gets 5 Dice in her shot at the  Yndij, thanks to the Sniper Scope, however the Snipe Shot is “heavy” so the shot is a “long or full action” the Sniper rolls 4 Successes one of which is an 8 so we roll an extra die…but stll end with 4 Successes…The Yndij Roll 2 Successes but both are 8’s so we roll two more and get a 3rd success..the Yndij has no Armor and takes 1 hit and is Damaged.  Lucky!

TURN  REBS

Use 1 Move Command Die  Then Teraton sprints to behind command building moving 4 Squares.

Use +1 Model  Command Die , to Activate Reb commander . She moves 1 square Fires AP ammo Sniper Shot at Strider its  6  success vs 3 Success ,  exactly what she  needed for 1 wound!  The Rebs luck continues
Seemed like a good idea, she did wound the Strider, but leaving her in postion to be blasted next turn, bad idea.


TURN ENFORCERS

Activate Enforcer Sgt, he climbs one cube then moving another on to the elevated walk way recovering
An item in the process we flip it over and its booby trap!..OOF….how he gets a bit of luck getting 2 survive success vs only one success for the exploding trap..he chalks it up to a misfire.

I use the last Enforcer command die +1 Model, to activate the last Enforcer who makes sprint action to join the other Enforcer  .

All Enforcers Models have moved.

TURN REBS

REBS have 2 Shoot Dice and one “ Xtra Die” Dice in the command pool.

REB Trooper (with Medi Pack) move 1 Cube up and heals Yndij Trooper of Wound

REB Trooper moves 1 and Fires for Effect you using a Shoot command die winning 3 Successes vs 2 and an Enforcer Trooper is Pinned.

Reb Trooper  moves 1 throw smoke Grenade block view of  forward Enforcer Trooper.

Reb Trooper Sprints, joins Commander,

Sorak, Sprint toward Item.


END OF ROUND 1
Check Smoke (3) smoke remains.


ROUND 2


The Strider vaporizes both the Reb Commander and Troop on the corner of the Red Building here.
 ENFORCERS TURN.

Command roll 4 Dice-  (2) +1` model,  1 Splat (special ability), 1 xtra Die
No reroll.

The Strider activates and immediately returns fire to Reb Commander in cover at the side of building.
It will use a command shoot die for a 4 Die roll, we get a whooping 4 success one of which is an 8 and we roll another for 5…no sense in even rolling the the 3 survive die, since the equalizer is AP4 the Reb Commander is obliterated!.
The  Strider then takes it second short action to fire at the Rebel Trooper in the same cube as the Reb Commander with the Commander down he is wholly exposed making this a 5 dice shot (+2 for in the open)
This time the Strider rolls 3 Successes but the Reb Trooper rolls NONE, he too is vaporized…
Enforcers just even it up big time, and Pass to the Rebs.


REBS TURN
Command Roll,  3 Dice since Reb Commander is Out of Action,
We Roll 3 “xtra Die” symbols and decide to keep it.


Teraton Activates uses it special action to Teleport to within one cube of the Strider, then a short action to move into the Cube with a Strider for a Fight.
The Teraton get 3 base dice in a fight plus 1 for moving into the cube this turn and 1 since the Strider is injured. And we also use an command “xtra die” dice  as well  for a total of 6. The Strider has a better chance trying to evade the attacks (survive) than try to fight back…
Since its larger model it get an extra dice. For a total of 4.
The Teraton scores 5 success vs 3 for the Strider,  for net of +2 the attacks are AP 1 essentially making it +3 the Strider’s armor is 3, so we fail to damage it… we need one more.
Striders are Tough!

ENFORCER TURN
Enforcer Sgt uses the Splat Command die to activate his special ability mobile infanty, this give him a free sprint action. He pick up an item (ammo) during this move he then uses his Rapid Fire ability to try to Pin the Ynidj Trooper down and keep him from attacking other teammates.
He successfully pins down the Ynidj 4 success vs 2.

Pass to Rebs.

REBS TURN

Sorak drops Frag Grenade make a Sprint Action to unclaimed item. He picks it up and it AP Ammo

Pass








ENFORCER TURN

SNIPER has to reposition in same cube to aim at other targets, since this counts as a short action and his weapon is “Heavy” he cant shoot.
Activate +1 Model Die to have pinned Enforcer stand up then make a short action move to cube with cover against Rebs approaching from left flank.

Pass to Rebs

REBS TURN

REB TROOPER Picks up Frag Gren left by Sorak, takes 2nd short action to base of  conveyor ramp

Pass

ENFORCER TURN

Activate Trooper who uses Fire for effect with Command Xtra Die to Pin down Reb Troop at Mine shaft entrance…he does so with a whopping 7 successes  (with exploding dice) vs 2 for the Reb
He then does this again at the Trooper on roof with his second short action but does not succeed.

REBS TURN

Pinned Trooper activates stands and shoots..a misses 3 vs 1 in favor of Enforcers

Reb Trooper on roof fires using last command xtra die at same Enforcer. And he does hit but
The Enforcer armor absorbs it.

END OF ROUND 2
Check Smoke (2) smoke remains.



Current Score ENFORCERS  6 VP,  REBS 3 VP
Yndij Trooper Pinned by Enforcer Rapid Fire.


 ROUND 3

ENFORCER TURN

(note on Initiative.  Enforcers continue to go first as initiative at the top of the round goes to the strike whose models finished all there turns 1st.  Since the Enforcers were initially outnumbered  8 to 6
Its difficult for the Rebs to finish the round 1st without several +1 model command moves. Considering the losses both sides have faced future turn may see the change in Initiative)

Command Roll 4 Dice = Shoot , Splat,, +1 Model.

The Strider Activates.  I quickly realize the Teraton shouldn’t have engage the Strider as this point it too hard to get thru that armor without some better  Strategy, The Strider simply takes a short action to move out of the cube. This give the Teraton a chance to attack against the Strider’s better Survive skill. Its  4 Dice vs 4 Dice and the Teraton win 4 to 3 but even with AP1 can’t get thru the Armor.

Now in the Adjacent cube the Strider can fire its powerful cannon point blank at the Teraton and it does.
And well the command xtra die plus our 2 bonus dice for 6 total dice… with exploding 8’s rolls a whopping 6 success !, while the Teraton  rolls all three of it success, its looking at 3 against this AP4 weapon, however the Teraton is “tough” so we remove 1 right away looking at 2 success then an Armor 1 for the Teraton meaning only 1 wound gets through…wounded.

Here we now play the enforcers xtra command shoot die for another chance 6 dice again, +2 for clear shot and now the Teraton is wounded. This time the Strider gets 4 success but the Teraton only gets 1, for +3 , we remove 1 for “tough” with net of 2, since the Equalizer is AP4 it bypass the armor for 2 Damage the Teraton is Down and out!

With the relative ease the Strider withdrew, I knew the Teraton was in big trouble

REBS TURN

Command Dice, 2 Moves , 1 Xtra Die

From here out is all down hill for the Rebs, losing the Teraton gave the Enforcers another 3 VP and they had 2 Items secure so they begin withdrawing

The Rebs end up losing another Trooper  from the Pathfinder Sniper during their own exit but The Rebel Yndij does grab a nearby item which turns out to be the mission Intel  worth 2 VP in this Specific mission


At the turn of Turn 4 all models have exited the board via their own D-Zone save the Pathfinder Sniper who was covering retreat sitting on an Item (ammo)



Final Score is 11 VP for the Enforcers, 4 VP for the Rebs

Enforcers had 1 Casualty,  a Regular Trooper.

Rebs had 4 including their main two units.

Enforcers left with 2 Ammo, 1 Frag Gren and 1 Med Pack they had brought but never used.

Rebs left with Intel, 1 AP Ammo, and 1 unused Ammo and Frag Grenade brought into the mission

I’ll go into detailed Campaign options when I write about setting up the next game but briefly.

The Enforcers Soldier died after rolling on the injury table and was removed from the Roster.

All remaining Enforcers got  at least 2 XP allowing them to level  up while the Sniper and Strider both had 3 XP, the Strider was clearly the MVP, getting commendation medal.

The Rebs all Survived but the Commander and Trooper miss the next game and the other Trooper lives  get his survive stat pushed to a 7+, The Teraton miraculously survives and is ready for the next game.

I had all models getting 1 XP, but the Sorak and Teraton (the MVP) got 2 XP with the Yndij Trooper getting 3XP, unfortunately the Yndij Trooper has no campaign options for Command Skills (as there is Yndij commander you can purchase) but the Teraton does, so he’ll be promoted to commander for the next match.

Overview.

A really fun game with some good dynamics, The Enforcers seem very difficult to beat, especially with the Strider without some sort of heavy Firepower..like the missile launcher as a counter. The Rebs really seem to need to concentrate fire a lot more than I did and use more teamwork, I left the commander hanging and that got her easily taken out, I can see the Teraton being a beast in melee against normal models, the Strider was a terrible choice to engage and it paid for it. 

Overall Kudos to Mantic for this fun little game, I’m enjoying the stuff and will surely model some more figures and terrain up soon, and that’s it for Deadzone 2, I hope was interesting and informative, if you have interest in the game.

 

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