Saturday, July 4, 2015

Mini-Marathon: Part 3, The Ultimate One


I have a problem, I have a 15mm Ogre and I never got into OGRE, but I know a man who did...

My 15mm OGRE has been sitting on a shelf for years, I've occasionally used it as scenery, but never used it in a game as I truly am clueless about them.  I got it years ago at the ECC GZG con (7 or 8?) in a trade for some figs because I thought it looked cool.  I recently corresponded with John Treadaway of Hammers Slammers Crucible rules to try to find a set of rules which I could use the OGRE for.  John obligingly came up with a great start for the OGRE.  However, I knew Mark is a big OGRE fan (he plays the SJ-OGRE game) so I wanted Mark to be the first to get to game with it.

A decision I may have made in haste...

That way, attack that way suggests Xena.
The goal of the OGRE is to gain access to the city, to do this is has to occupy the top RHS corner (a 1x1' square)
The OGRE rumbles forwards
City Defense rushes to counter it
It looks grim for the city
City tank destroyers open up, heavy armour penetrators glance off the thick frontal armour
Xena advises Mark on target selection
"All of them" says Xena.  A hellbore round goes through a tank destroyer from end to end
Howitzers lash out at MBTs
PATU carriers throttle forwards to deliver their cargo before they too get annihilated
Missiles streak into towards the carriers
Secondary batteries KO drones.  And that was just in the first turn.  Looks like I seriously underestimated this OGRE

PATUs debus and leap forwards
Jumping past wrecked cars
A Drone scores a lucky shot - and at this point we have a problem - we get a 'Boom' result and discuss how to handle it.  We bodge a solution and carry on, with  seriously weakened top armour for The OGRE
PATUs dash
PATUs volley buzzbombs, scoring minor hits only
The OGRE isn't worried, it just grinds forwards, crushing all in its way
A long shot of the devastation, The OGRE decimates the PA with secondaries.  Finally I get some heavy tanks as reinforcements
20cm powerguns line up, hit and score only minor hits on the side, at least I get  some mobility hits to slow the beast down
Ha! snorts The OGRE
As Mark begins another round of methodically destroying my available forces
Although I helped with a 'double firing' mishap
The OGRE KO's main guns
Kills and suppresses PA
Then finishes killing the PA
THE TANKS, THE TANKS indicates Xena
My heavy tanks are its next focus, one goes to howitzer fire
I get another chance to fire, scoring hits but not much damage
The OGRE grinds forwards inexorably towards the city
It destroys another heavy tank
I get two super-heavies as reinforcements, they pour heavy powergun rounds into the OGRE, the rear has taken a lot of hits. 
A closer shot of me actually doing some damage to the OGRE
Other tanks rush to flank the OGRE, more rounds pour in, weakening the rear further
We may have a chance to stop this thing before it reaches the city
Mark slows his shooing a fraction to surge the OGRE into the city, making it harder for me to range on to it
The OGRE deep into the canyon of the city
View from drones
By slowing his shooting, I mean Mark only KOs some of my forces rather than totally destroy them.  All my Sillers are KO'd
The super-heavies breach the rear armour, but BOTH roll 6's for effect, two BOOMS and Mark and I decide that means a reactor breach, the OGRE goes nuke
Slowly it builds
Until the explosion engulfs a significant chunk of the city - a pyrrhic victory for me
The city burns.

The OGRE was tough, very tough and very shooty, but while playing Mark was telling me that it perhaps should be more effective in some areas.  Sure we made a few mistakes too, but it was a first game with it.  I guess we just have to tweak things a bit to get it the way we think it should.  Next time though I'm going to use more heavy tanks, and more heavy guns, this was fun though, a really desparate defence against a monster tank.

An that was the end of the mini-marathon, Mark was off on the rest of his trip the next day.  It was a great visit though, thanks for the fun games!

Mini-Marathon: Part the Second

spacehulk! SpaceHulk! SPACEHULK!

Mark likes SpaceHulk, he just rarely gets the chance to play.  Mark has played the first two missions form the original, so here's the third, "Rescue the C.A.T." in which a squad with a recon device has to cross a stealer infested hulk to escape , a second squad comes to their rescue .

Its a tough mission, back in the day when I played SH a lot, this was hard, its been a few years so we'll see how hard it is this time.

First problem, my timer -its battery is dead, no problem, I'll use my phone, but DOH! now I'm not taking pictures

First game, I'm 'stealers' and Mark is Marines.  I get an early swarm on him and get to the C.A.T., one broken C.A.T. - game over, time to reset and switch sides.

Second game - I dash to lower entry areas, use flames to cover my advances and manage to prevent the early swarm. I get my C.A.T. carrier down to the lower room with only a single casualty then things go bad fast.  I get a string of awful rolls for CPs and Mark starts to swarm the lower entry areas, and by swarm I mean a TON of bugs appear.  We don't use the standard blips, we like to play blind, using a generic marker and dice for bugs, in this games its 1-3 per blip.  During his swarming Mark has seven blips, he gets 22 bugs.  

At this point I realize I'm not being very smart - of course I can use the timer and take pictures with my iPhone!

 The swarm builds up (I use 20mm Xenomorph Aliens and 25mm GZG PA instead of the GW terminators/stealers).  I lose overwatch
 Doh! wrong time for a jam
At the other end Marks dice are averaging nicely, the swarm gets all the 3xbugs, this end gets 1-2xbugs.  This helps me get my Marines over to the lower room
 Ready, Set, Munch!
Or tactically deploy to eat up my APs and CPs to prevent my advance.  Drat!
Things look bad at the other end, a Bug breaks through and is about to fillet my Marines
 Mark's dog Xena is not impressed
The swarm goes for it, one marine, overwatch Marine jams
 C.A.T. carrier was trying a sneak around
 Bugs do more tactical APs, closing a door to kill overwatch LoS
 Wow! a Marine takes out a Bug in HTH
DAKKA, DAKKA, DAKKA!  the Marine mows down a Bug and a door, exposing the corridor to overwatch
Ah hubris, the swarm take down the Marine who won the HTH.  It moves on to the C.A.T. carrier and takes the Marine down (I forgot to place the kill markers).  In the melee the C.A.T. is damaged so it can't move -  this prevents either of us trying to gain control of it and move it away
More swarm builds!  I have no option other than to advance a Marine into the Bugs to clear a LoS for the Flamethrower
Obligingly, the Bugs take down my Marine, I block a section with the Flamer while consolidating my remaining troops
Bugs start building up at both ends, it looks grim for the Marines
CPs!, I finally get some. With CPs I advance on the exit areas, rolling the flame barrage forward while clearing Bugs from the rear.  I set double overwatch on the rear and go hard forwards in a last-ditch effort to get the C.A.T.
Whoosh, Mark tries to run Bugs through the flames to get behind the advancing Marine.  This time it does not work
The rear defenders take down a bunch of bugs (the acid-splats are dead Bug markers, we had killed so may that we were recycling them from other board areas and stopped double stacking them), but others rush forwards
A view of the long way out.  A measly 12APs if everything works out perfectly
CPs!  I roll 6 CPs!  If all goes right, just maybe...
Whoosh, I have two flamer shots remaining, I use one to block the junction preventing the swarm's advance.  That advancing Marine better be a good shot
Advance fire, Advance Fire, repeat, repeat, repeat, pick up C.A.T., advance.
Close, but 3 APs short of a win.  Mark has a slim chance to win by rushing the flames to get at the Marine.
Start counting squares!  Only one Bug has a chance, Mark goes for it and Whoomp, the Bug goes up in flames.  Win for the Marines. 
Or that should be win for the Marine, as only one of them is getting out of this mission alive.
At the other end we see why, there is no way these two are cutting through both swarms to escape.

What a game, it whipsawed both ways three or four times.  Everytime it was one or two key actions which decided the outcome, and in that last Marine turn, anything less than 4CPs would have been a sure win for the Stealers.  Pure SH drama, and with a knife-edge win of a single Marine too!  

This is why Spacehulk v1 had so many fans, its was and still is IMO, GW best game, its the most playable, best written and most fun.   And because in SH you switch sides we get to play two games, not one. 

Thanks Mark, that was a great SH session.