Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Tomorrow's War run-through

USMC entered from west. Pilot located in fenced-in area in center.

Running a little behind here. As previously noted, October through December is very hectic these days. But we're catching up! A couple weeks ago, Maurice and I sat down to try out Tomorrow's War. I've heard good things about the game, even if it isn't exactly my oeuvre. But always open to new and interesting gaming experiences. (A couple guys at the local store note that my crew is always trying out new and different games, that's a good reputation to have I think.)

The pic above is our attempt to recreate "Lost and Found," the 'rescue the downed pilot' scenario from the book. And by recreate, I mean Maurice made an effort to get the map as close as he could. Which of course lead to me mocking him, but I guess that reflects more on me than him, but hey.  (I also asked if I could just shoot the pilot, naturally. Stupid Interstellar Geneva Convention!)

My Kontrol Battalion played the role of the slightly more numerous but less technologically equipped 'bad guys.' There was a downed pilot, holed up in the open next to a rough building. (We don't like to use the term 'human shield.') His USMC forces had to enter the area, where Kontrol troops were set up in ambush, collect the pilot (Sgt. MacGuffin!), and leave the board off the same edge.

This sounded like an easy day for my side... and I was dramatically mistaken. The good guys had a higher training/quality level, meaning they were rolling d8s, while I was rolling d6s. Most rolls are oppossed, and compared directly. Meaning it was easy for him to negate even my best rolls, repeatedly.

So yeah. I started in position, and didn't even have to maneuver much (I did send the command squad into the building, but it didn't help them.) I could have repositioned my far west squad to try and 'cut off' the good guys... but I don't see how they wouldn't have just maneuvered around. or focused their fire on the blocking squad, and kept moving anyways.

Some other players have tried out the same scenario, to a similar end, as noted in this thread. The rules aren't bad, but man, unequal training levels really hurt. I'm not against giving the game another go, but I really want to read up on how to make it more of a fair fight for both sides while keeping things interesting.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

11+1: "Bob"

A boon companion at 28mm scale...

Uh oh. The year is winding down, and as predicted I still have a lot left on my self-imposed challenge. This charmer is known as "Bob," since his actual name from his home planet is only pronounceable to sentient being equipped with both types of olfactory differentiation glands and hyperscrolbic vision. So, "Bob" works for everyone else.

...and a completely different silhouette when among the 15mms.

I was trying to stay away from more Muppet-like color schemes, but damned if at least a couple times I was ready to give up and go right back for a full repaint. As noted previously, the fig (called 'Terla') is from Zombiesmith's Starport collection, a lovely line with a lot of creative characters.

Hoping to find time for more painting this week, plus posting a batrep or two. We'll see. Fall is just so busy around here.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Department case file 217-011

Maurice and I sat down a couple weeks ago to try out The Department, a nifty Goalsystem game of police procedure investigating fabricant crimes (think Blade Runner.) I'm a fan of the Goalsystem ruleset, and like how it simulates the RPG-style 'downtime' for in between adventures, and thusly could be a good replacement for gamers like me who dig minis but don't have the committed weekly roleplaying games in our lives anymore.

Case file: 217-011
Target: "Nick," Anti-Human Terrorist Cell Leader
Starting budget: 100
Primary officers:
Detective Inspector Huang Lo (Fabricant Crimes division) (46 pts.)
Deputy Sgt. Zogby (Enforcement division) (46 pts.)

1. Incident report: "Grass the Neighborhood" (Budget: 5.)

Our officers hit the streets to start collecting rumors from the usual suspects, hoping for a good lead to start things rolling. Spotting Madji, a local rumormonger, with an unnamed accomplish near the market, Lo and Zogby approach and begin to question them. Lo's questions go nowhere, but Zogby hints at some intimidating outcomes if they don't cooperate, and Madji gives up the goods [successful Intimidate roll secures one People evidence.] Neither suspect has anything else to hide, and the DFM officers return to the station to file reports.

[Snoozer. Spent more time setting up the terrain than actually playing the scenario. Good for getting the investigation going, though, which I think is the intent. And we just re-used the terrain setup for the next mission.]

2. Incident report: "Meet the Snitch" (Budget: 5.)

Following up on other information, officers head to the wrong part of town. Reaching the scene, they find a riot in progress, and are set upon by at least four rioters. After attempting to get the situation under control, they reconsider, contact the Urban Control authorities, get back in their car and drive the flip away.

[EGADS. We went in without any backup or requesting additional equipment, and wow. We just called this one a wash, chalked it up to experience, and pretended it never happened.]

3. Incident report: "Bust the Dealer" (Budget: 5, -1 People evidence.)
Requisitioned: 2 light armors, shotgun, blaster pistol (Budget: 6.)

Following up on Madji's tip from earlier, officers head to the site of the riot to corner a local dealer, Omar. Sticking close to the buildings, Lo and Zogby try to stay out of the dealer's line of sight. This proves to be a wise move. On confronting Omar about his connections to Nick's cell, Omar's bodyguard "the Gorilla" opens fire on the DFM officers. A skirmish ensues, with Lo attempting to stun Omar while Zogby charges the bodyguard. After subduing the Gorilla, Zogby also takes down Omar, and both are brought downtown.

At the station, both suspects are found to be fabricants, and fold under questioning. Omar gives up details on money drops for the cell, while the Gorilla spills about where other cell members were hiding out. [Successful interrogation rolls lead to one Financial evidence and one People evidence.]

[OK, now I think we got this down. Initially I thought the budget for the investigation would be too high, but requisitioning and backup look to be crucial in the right circumstances. Like keeping yourself alive.]

Remaining budget for the investigation: 79.
Zogby has accumulated four experience, Lo a mere two.

[Looking ahead, we'll need to bankroll a lot more evidence to confront Nick at his compound. And keep some budget banked for that, because that will be a war zone. The game is pretty cool, once we got used to the ebb and flow of the operation. Missions can be quick or involved, and you have to think ahead as to what you're doing.]