Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Cogs from Mars

So my cohort for DW has to take a break, which leaves me without an opponent for a while. An open invite went out to the club, but so far no takers. Therefore, Dystopian Wars learning games will be on hold until Robert is back in action.

Never fear though, I'm rolling right into my latest army, Adeptus Mechanicus! I have to say I was pretty impressed with the models from this army when they were first released. However, GW's silly pricing and general assness kept me from getting them. Luckily for me, a local player decided to get rid of his army and I was fortunate enough to be in a position to buy it at a price I did not mind.

Better yet, the whole army is already assembled. Sure, I didn't get the say as to what they were armed with and such, but basically the guy did a good job and I really didn't care that much. I didn't have to build a darn thing...whoo hooo! And, he had pretty much the entire army from both books. I'm only missing one kit. I added up the points for the various units and weapons that were on them and it makes an army over 2000pts. So all I really need to do is paint this sucker.

Anyways, enough on the sweet deal I got, the good part is that my club is running a new 40K league and I hopped in with my Ad Mech. Now this isn't a typical 40K league...in fact, it is called the Old School League because it restricts the armies quite a bit. No formations, no super heavies, no allies, no fliers. Standard force org for everyone. Armies like the Ad mech have some special consideration for them since the Skitarii doesn't have a full org chart. But pretty much, its 40K the way we used to play it...just using 7th ed rules.

Also, truth be told, these guys had come up with it before BoLSs had released their document. But it is refreshing to see that others feel the same way we do.

I'm sure my army is going to be the underdog in most match ups, but I'm not too worried. I love the models and I think I should be able to just go out, roll some dice, and have fun. And with the weather turning nicer, I may even get inspired to start painting on some of the models. I'm liking the Metalica faction for the army look. I don't have a white army and I think it can really stand out over a gun metal underbody. Should be interesting. Keep an eye out for updates.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Dystopian Wars, game 2

Hello gentle readers,

Last night, my friend Robert and I engaged in game two of our Dystopian Wars learning series. This time we upped the game size to 700 points and added in local air support. This time Robert brought his own fleet in the form of the Covenant. I stuck with my Chinese Federation.

I didn't take pictures last night, and I'm just going to give a brief recap of events. Robert had not made an army ahead of time, but just brought his naval models, so he was a little short on points. We played with far too much terrain on the board, but it did make for an interesting game.

I'm still getting flamethrower rules wrong. I had a chance to roast his BB a little, but I thought they linked fire instead of combined fire. Would have been nice to put some corrosive and fire tokens on that beast.

Robert rolls like crap. I've never seen anyone roll 3d6 and get less than 10 on almost every roll. His light cruisers did almost nothing the whole game, despite having energy weapons.

My dice were still hot. I was popping his frigates all over the place and was taking out a light cruiser a turn.

Energy weapons are just sick. His BB finally got in a good firing position and he laid out the hurt. Honestly, what was Spartan thinking? 6d6 to determine your AD, which then ignores shields and armor MARs?? At all four range bands???

It won't be so bad when we are playing mixed forces, but right now, since we are only doing naval, those energy weapons are just sick.

So the game had ended with me having a lightly damaged BB and battlecruiser. My destroyers were missing one of their number, and my last cruiser was waiting for the killing blow to land. Robert lost all of his light cruisers, and was down to a single frigate in all three of his squadrons. His BB though was only lightly damaged from a bombing run.

The SAS rules were still confusing, but we muddled through them. I have to give a huge shout out to Element 270...not only do they have great podcasts, but their download section has fantastic reference sheets. I wish I had found them prior to yesterday's game. Now I do have them and expect the games to go much smoother with my new mini rulebook. :)


Check them out.

On somewhat related news, last night at the gamestore, there was a pair of gamers playing Planetfall. So that was great to see another game I'm really interested in being played. More opponents! Plus, one of those guys was interested in DW. And another DW player swung by our table as we played. So for some reason, in the PACNW, there are DW players...they just don't come out often.

Until next time!

Saturday, March 12, 2016

Dystopian Wars Battle Report v2.0

As promised, I will try my best to chronicle my learning of DW 2.0. I had my first real learning game. We kept things very simple to make sure we had a firm grasp of the basic rules. We had 500pt fleets that just adhered to the first rule of list building. So we each had one large squadron, a medium squadron, and a small squadron.

I fielded my Chinese Federation (CF) models for the very first time. I took Jian mark I battleship, three Dao cruisers, and four Nu frigates. My friend Robert fielded my Federated States of America (FSA) models, and had a Liberty heavy battleship, three Georgetown cruisers, and three Augusta frigates. I will have to say, after looking at the stats of the two fleets, I was pretty sure the CF were going to be fighting an uphill battle. Both Robert and I had played DW 1.2 a few times, but were by no means experts.

I ran out and bought a new blue table cloth just for the game. :) We rolled for terrain as in the book and only got one item, which I got to put down. So I plopped the largest island from the starter set. That is the FSA on the left, and the CF on the right. I won the roll off for init and went first.

I'll apologize now for not taking activation by activation pictures. Since this was such a small game, I tried to take when something major happened. I started off with moving my frigates around the north side of the island to get some shots off at his cruiser. However, the boats didn't have enough speed to get everyone in range, so no damage was done. Robert then swung his frigates over to shoot at mine, and blew one up with a crit. I passed the motivation test.

I then moved my cruisers forward and linked their fore guns at the battleship. Five sixes later, a nice crit was placed on the FSA BB (I have no idea why battleships are abbreviated as BB). He then activated his kinetic generator to speed his BB an extra 5" forward and launched everything he had at the CF BB, but only succeeded in putting on a single hit. The CF BB then moved forward and fired its broadsides at the FSA BB and put on another critical. Due to the special rules on the CF weapons, I had stripped of several crew and put on raging fire tokens as well. Finally, his cruisers moved up and unleashed on the CF BB, but only succeeded in adding another point of damage.

In the end phase, the FSA BB failed to put out the fire or remove the chaos critical.

Turn 2: (above pic shows status after two activations)
On my first activation, my cruisers moved up to fire upon the BB and the cruisers. The BB was unscathed, but I critted a cruiser and knocked out its engine. He then advanced his BB before it got damaged further and fired upon my battleship. The dice were going well for me, and not so much for him.
Seeing how my BB was screened by my cruisers, I activated my frigates and was able to take out one of his frigates, and damage another. The FSA frigates, now down to two, were still potent enough to take out one of mine in return. All motivation tests were passed.

I then advanced my BB slowly, I was just short of ramming distance, and I didn't want to risk one. Why put damage on my ship when his was hurting so much?

The heavy flamethrowers roasted his BB and put on a crit (this is where I goofed in the rules. Apparently flamethrowers don't put on crit damage, but just add on heaps of fire tokens) So now his BB had fires, corrosive markers, and other damage while it drifted ahead. The broadsides were able to finish off one of the FSA cruisers as well. Those cruisers were still very lethal though, taking down one of mine and damaging another, in fact, he triple critted one of them. Thankfully though the first crit was enough to destroy it (I think his BB had put damage one of the cruisers as well).

In the command phase, his BB was able to stop one of the fires, and one of the corrosive markers, but was slowly burning and melting apart. I think my cruisers had failed their disorder test, but we missed doing its effects in the end phase.

Turn 3:
Here is where things went sideways. I finished off his BB with my BB after carefully avoiding the ram. His cruisers then fired at mine, and destroyed another one...but not only destroying it...teleporting it 16", right over the island, and smack dab on top of his two frigates. No lie. We checked the lines and distance over and over again to make sure we were doing it right. The two little boats got crushed by the CF cruiser and sank.

He almost took out the last cruiser as well. Those FSA cruisers are simply nasty. However, now the rest of my fleet was able to turn their attention on them and very quickly the crits started to roll in. At this point we called the game due to time. Had we gone one more turn, I'm sure he would have finished off my last cruiser, but would have been wiped out in turn.

All in all, very unexpected turn of events. I was sure the FSA was going to mop up. As this was a learning game, we knew mistakes were going to be made. However, at every turn, we discussed what the best firing options were for each player. So in those regards, no errors were made. The only tactical error in the game (other than my small ships going too far to get that first turn shot off which didn't do anything but make them a target) was when he used his kinetic generator to catapult his BB ahead. The FSA had the range advantage, and by putting his BB so close to my lines, it let me concentrate my cruisers and BB on it, leaving his cruisers to catch up.

Still, I think the game went reasonable quick for a learning game. We did play for about three hours. I'm sure that repeated play will cut our time down for turns. We are going to slowly introduce other aspects of the game each week. I think we are going to try out the SAS tokens for our next game, and maybe up the points a little.

The weather here in the PACNW is dismal, and not conducive to priming. So you might be seeing a lot of bare ships for a while. However, I do think Robert is going to bust out his Covenant for next week. Lets see if the Chinese Federation can handle them.

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Dystopian Wars v2.0

So tonight marks my return to Dystopian Wars. This should not surprise anyone as I have a recorded history of jumping from one game to another. I used to have an entire blog for Dystopian Wars...you can see it over there to the right. However, due to my game jumping habits, I closed it down to have a single blog that encompassed all the games I play.

Anyways, I decided to give the rules another look and the game another try. The sort of sad part about why I hopped back to it, was due to the fact that no one locally has managed to ruin the game for me. I just can't stand competitive meta. And that is almost all you see when you look at the really popular games. Well the one nice thing about Dystopian Wars, is that it isn't popular, and hence, no one is really breaking it. And I'm not going out and looking for it either. I do love the background and design of the game. The models are great.

So tonight, I'll be taking it slow and learning the game with a buddy of mine. Hopefully we might draw in a few more, but if not, then that is okay too. I have three fleets, so I have lots of variety to play with already. One of the great parts of the game is that you don't need to lug around a huge case of minis. It does seem to be a bit "counter" heavy with all the various chits they have. Hopefully though it won't slow the game down.

Tonight we have the Chinese facing off against the FSA. Both are my fleets as my friend's stuff is all packed up after a recent move. Both forces are 500pts exactly and consist of a Battleship, a few Cruisers, and then some Frigates. I think the FSA will probably have the advantage here, but we'll see. If the Chinese can close the distance, those flamethrowers can be pretty nasty. I'll try to remember to document the whole thing so that I can post up a battle report tomorrow or over the weekend.