Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Halloween Scenario

As this year the 31st of October falls on a Tuesday, my regular gaming club night, I decided to do something special, so I am bringing a scenario back, one that died several editions ago but I'm digging up and giving a burst of life to resurrect for our enjoyment...

I originally found this on a blog called Awakening Ynead, I have no idea if he's still blogging (or perhaps has renamed his blog given that Ynead is now, y'know, awake) so original credit goes that way, but hopefully I have updated it to work in 8th edition. I have tried to keep the original character as much as possible while abiding by the obvious changes to the ruleset.


 
Army Selection:


You have 75 points. There is no minimum requirement for squad sizes (so an Eldar player could take one Fire Dragon, one Striking Scorpion and so on). Only three of these can be "upgrade" characters, like a sergeant or an exarch, though that model may take an upgrades allowed without counting for further "upgrades." No more than two can have "upgrade weapons" such as a heavy or special weapon that isn't standard equipment. For example, a Space Marine player takes 3 Marines and a Scout. He can upgrade one into a sergeant with any weapons normally allowed, and two more can have special weapons normally allowed by their codex entry.


You may select team members from any Force Organization slot except HQ. Only infantry models may be selected.  No dedicated transports are allowed. You are not allowed to select anything with the “character” special rule.


All selected models form one squad. Your squad must remain in 2" coherency, and are treated as a single squad.


Setup and Objective


Set up the board with the normal amount of terrain for a 40k game.  Ruins and graveyards make great terrain for this mission.  If you have a large amount of players you may need to either split into two tables or widen the current table.  The players should have to cross about 6' of board with enough room side to side so that everyone isn't clustered together.


The goal is to reach the escape helicopter (or truck or whatever). The first squad (at least one guy alive, obviously) to be within embarking distance at the beginning of their movement
phase wins (so you have to survive one round before you can win).  If there is another unengaged player within embarking distance you may not embark.  You must duke it out with the other player as there can only be one.  There should be one escape helicopter per 5 players, spread out evenly along the back board edge.  Each escape helicopter is guarded by a boss zombie.


Turn order is determined randomly.  Each player will move, shoot and assault, then pass to the next player.  When all players have gone the zombies take their turn.  There's no need for a zombie controller as the zombies are on autopilot. After the zombie turn, everyone takes any relevant morale tests. This is of course unlikely as most squads will be small in size, but do so if necessary. Use the highest leadership value in the squad.
 
 
 
Movement Phase: Players who fall back from combat must end their move not only further away from the enemy, but also further from the nearest chopper.
 



Shooting Phase:


More Pressing Matters: Treat all player controlled squads as if they had the “character” special rule for the purposes of shooting. This rule is thrown out the window once a player controlled team gets within 18” of the chopper. A team within 18” of the chopper can return fire at any squad that fired at them, but otherwise the character rule still applies to the pursuing squads.


Assault Phase:


On each player turn, only teams in an assault involving the active players models will fight. This is to prevent each team potentially getting as many rounds of combat as there are players between zombie phases, which would brutalise the local zombie population. So if you charge zombies, you will fight them. Everyone else waits for their (or the zombies) turn.


If your assault involves multiple squads of zombies, for simplicity's sake you don't have to say which squad you're attacking.  Remove casualties from the smallest squad first (you get more powerups that way)


If you assault a player squad, they get to fight back as normal. If you assault an ongoing assault between a player team and zombies (or between multiple player teams) then people can attack whoever they wish following the usual rules for combat. Everyone with skin in the game gets to fight, each time it is the turn of someone involved in the fight. A mass player team bundle will get messy very quickly.


If a team starts it’s turn in combat with other players but then withdraws, those players do not get to fight that turn.


After all players have gone the Zombies will move.
 

 
ZOMBIE TIME


Zombies come in squads of 5. There should be about two squads of zombies per
player, deployed in a spread out fashion. Their stats are as follows:


WS5+ S3 T3 A1 W1 LD10 Armour 5+


Resilience: Zombies save all suffered wounds (even mortal wounds) on a 5+
Bit! - Any to wound roll of a 6 inflicts a mortal wound instead of a normal wound. If this isn’t saved by some other means, such as a med pack, then a new zombie joins the squad that inflicted the mortal wound.


Zombies only have two phases, the Shamble Phase and the BRAAAAAIIINS phase.


Shamble Phase: Killed zombies will respawn in groups of 5 during this phase, before rolling to move the zombies.  Roll a  D6 on the following chart to see where they go.


1:  Starting table edge
2:  The table edge to the left of the starting edge
3:  The table edge opposite the starting edge
4:  The table edge to the right of the starting edge
5:  Scatter 3d6" from the center of the table.  Zombies deepstrike like a drop pod and will move out of the way of obstructions.  They will move and assault with the rest of the zombies as normal.
6:  The player who is furthest from the chopper chooses a result 1-5 on this chart.  Further rolls of a 6 will go to the second furthest player and so on.


Zombies moving in from a board edge will enter in line with the nearest unengaged player.  Subsequent entries in the same phase on the same table edge will move in towards the second nearest, and so on.


Zombies will move 2D6 to the nearest target. All zombies on the
board move the same distance but at their own relative targets. If this move
brings them in base contact with a player squad they count as assaulting. There is no overwatch… we’ve all seen zombie movies, those sneaky fuckers always pop out for the jump scare.


Zombies will join a current assault if they can fit.  If they can't fit they will instead move towards the next nearest target.


If a player kills the last member of a zombie squad, or kills the last member of a player squad (only whomever removed the last model, doesn't matter who did all the work) he may roll on the powerup chart.


BRAAAAINS Phase: Zombies assault during their movement, we just combine it because they don't shoot.  They receive +1 attack if they charge.


The Boss Zombie:  The boss zombie does not move during the shamble phase as normal.  It will only move if a player moves within embarking distance of the escape vehicle, and will automatically assault that squad.  If there are multiple squads that meet this requirement randomize which one it assaults.


WS4+ S4 T4 A3 W3 LD10 Armor 4+


Resilience: Zombies save all suffered wounds (even mortal wounds) on a 5+
Bit! - Any to wound roll of a 6 inflicts a mortal wound instead of a normal wound. If this isn’t saved by some other means, such as a med pack, then a new zombie joins the squad that inflicted the mortal wound.
Really Resilient - any attack that would do multiple damage only does 1 Wound instead.


It is of course perfectly legal to move your squad and escape in the vehicle while the other player is off fighting the boss or another player.
 


Respawns:


Should your squad be destroyed, you may respawn in your turn no closer than 6" behind the
furthest player, but it can be anywhere on the board (as long as you are 6" further away from the choppa than the current furthest squad).  You lose all upgrades and powerups earned during their previous lifetime.  If you wish you may play a new team.  When you respawn you may roll on the powerup chart.  You may voluntarily suicide your squad at any time to respawn, but if you do you may not roll on the powerup chart.


Powerups:


If you kill the last member of a squad (zombie or player, this also includes killing the boss zombie, and also includes wiping them out due to morale rolls) you may roll 2D6 on the powerup chart.


2:  Zombie Bile:  You are treated as the only target for the next Shamble Phase.  If two or more players have this then the zombies will move to whomever is closer of those players.  If another player is in the way of the zombie movement, the zombies assault that unfortunate unit as they just happened to be in the wrong place.
3:  Banana Peel:  In your next turn, your movement value is determined by rolling 2D6 and using the highest. This may technically make your squad faster… hey, guess you got some momentum from that banana skin.
4:  Ork Boy Tag Along:  An Ork boy has decided to join you for some reason.  He is armed with a pistol and a choppa and is treated as a member of your squad for all purposes.
5:  Duct Tape:  Whether it's a chainsaw taped to a kayak paddle or a duct-taped-over-under gun, you may give one model either +1 attack or +1 shot per turn.  Permanently.  Until you die.
6:  Chainsaw:  The ultimate zombie close combat weapon.  One model may be equipped with this item.  Requires 2 hands.  Hits on a 2+, and if it hits instantly takes a wound (no saves, even resilience saves) off any zombie in close combat.  If you roll a 1 the chainsaw has run out of fuel and is discarded (but any hits you got in this round still count, if you roll a 1 and get a reroll it does not run out of fuel unless you roll another 1).
7:  Medpack.  May be saved, one use only, you may carry any number of these.  You may ignore one suffered wound. Even a mortal wound. This is after a failed armour roll.
8:  Shotgun:  There is no better tool in an zombie invasion.  One model is armed with it, and that model does not need to have a ballistic skill.  The shotgun has a range of 6" and hits on a 2+, instantly taking a wound off a zombie with no armour or resilience saves allowed.  It is an assault 1 weapon.  If shot at a player it is treated just as the Imperial Guard version of the shotgun.
9:  Super Mushroom Speed Pack:  You may carry up to one of these in your squad.  When activated all members in your squad may add an extra +1 to all their movement, which includes movement, advancing and assaulting.  
10:  Defibrillator:  Counts as a Medpack but may be used to bring back one model in your squad who has previously died.  If that model had multiple wounds only one is restored.
11:  Sweet Aviator Shades:  In the next Shamble Phase, zombies will ignore your squad for the purposes of the closest target.
12:  The Blessing of Chuck Norris:  Your squad receives the blessing of the Great Red Bearded One until the end of their next turn.  Your squad may reroll all rolls they make (if they already have a reroll they can reroll that reroll as Chuck is that awesome).  All shooting counts as AP -5 with no cover allowed and all assault counts as AP-3 and allow no resilience saves.


If you are the furthest player from the board edge, you may add +1 to your roll.  You may roll the dice before deciding whether or not to add the +1.  You may also switch out any rolled result for The Blue Shell.  If you pick The Blue Shell you may move the player closest to the escape vehicle back D6" away from the vehicle.  If they are in close combat, the whole combat moves with them.  If your roll on the powerup chart is because of a respawn, you may not select The Blue Shell.


The +1 can only take you up to 11… it’s a spinal tap, but not a blessing of chuck norris. Only a natural double six can get you the blessing of chuck norris. Chuck himself managed it with only one dice.

 

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Test Squad for the Tale... and a Troll.

I'm planning a Tale in the new year, and wanted to figure out my colour scheme for the pink horrors. It's a squad I had leftover ages ago after making myself a herald on disc (before they released the model... I might give him a touch up at some point too)


This is a finished squad, in the final decided colour scheme. I did have a few models in different schemes, but I have settled on the one above now.


I also had the time to do an extra for my orc bloodbowl team... and technically for my future goblin team too.


And finally, making the final touches to the Zombie scenario I want to run on Halloween, following some feedback from some friends. I'll publish those rules in the next couple of days.

Monday, 11 September 2017

Odds and Ends...

Over the past week or so I haven't updated the blog, but I have got some hobby time in. I'm unfortunately at that annoying point where there are things I want to paint, but they aren't undercoated, and the weather has not been conducive to me remedying that... so I'm picking up odds and ends here and there.


This fella is an ork nob with waagh banner for my bad moons. Annoyingly I did the skin wrong, auto piloting to the skin scheme I did for deffskulls and snakebite, though I had a darker more time consuming method for the rest of the bad moons. Luckily the guy is wearing a mask so it's only his arms. I can potentially ignore it, or revisit the model and do a fairly quick fix. Will dig out my "methods" notebook and make sure I have all the right paints before I make my decision.


This is the last squad of shoots boyz I had undercoated for my deffskulls... just basic boyz with shoots, nothing special but always handy to have more boyz.

Something I actually wanted to get done, frag cannons for my deathwatch, for the next 1000 points. Between these guys, my aliens project and a couple characters, I can now field 3000 points... it's 56 models, 3 of which are vehicles. Man deathwatch are pricey...


This is a random deathwing terminator a friend no longer wanted, so I adapted him into a deathwatch captain in terminator armour. Just nice to have options.



Which finally brings these two. A librarian, planned for the extra 1000 points. And a librarian in terminator armour. Cos, y'know, options.

I also tracked down an old zombie multiplayer version of 40k from like 5th Ed or something, I have noticed that Halloween this year falls on a club night, so plan to run a cool scenario. Best update those rules though. Hopefully do those in the next few days, so that I can make a less rambling blogpost.

Till then...

Wednesday, 30 August 2017

Deathwatch Third Outing: Finally a Win!

So last night my fledgling deathwatch force were up against a ynari list, and all their shenanigans. Still, after getting the initiative seized by a khorne army (allowing a lot of assault units to be halfway across the board before I could blink) and then seized the following week (allowing a lascannon squad to fire twice, absolutely decimating half my firebase) I was confident that my army, expressly designed to have a small number of drops so I should have the first turn the majority of the time, would have a good chance now we were finally fighting actual xenos, what we are supposed to fight.

So we set up, he seized...

Sigh

I'd just like the first turn once with this army. Just to see what it is like.

Anyway, he managed to strip one of my Corvus to half health, so I dropped the squad off among my own lines rather than risk carrying them to their deaths, and sent the Corvus off to harass and grab objectives. And other than that I went with an A-Team plan...


Knowing that things dying lets them do shenanigans, I was careful with my firepower. Ok, those boltguns at long range, and just the boltguns, will fire at one unit. Two frag missiles at a different target. Couple more frag missiles at a third. One krak missile at the wraithlord. This way I whittled most of his units down to being one or two members each, meaning that when something finally did die, he was left with fairly limited options about what to do... hmm, do I have the one wych charge or the one dire avenger shoot?

I held a lead on points for most of the game, and managed to pull off an 11-9 win. Things may have been closer but my opponent made a fatal error in turn 4, charging off an objective with a warlock to back up the big dead god avatar thingymajig. Absolutely unnecessary to the combat, but took him off an objective he needed to score for a single point AND for supremacy... Now he realised his error and scored them the next turn, but that cost him two cards for turn 5. We drew an extra two cards at the end of the game, one was easy, one was impossible, so only a slight narrowing of the scores... but then he didn't have linebreaker, and could have had it. But then neither did I. Still, a very close game.

Star of the show goes to my Corvus (the second one) that, aside from scoring me at least 4 vp over the course of the game, survived a shot in turn 5 by passing a 6+ armour save on one wound. It then went and put itself in a linebreaker position just in case, next to a unit with a blaster. It inevitably died, but the resulting explosion took out the unit that killed it. Result!

Overall, I felt this game went a lot better for me than others have. Special issue ammunition is more fun when you're not against just basic marines. I also felt I had a good plan for minimising the risk from the ynari special rules and it seemed to work quite well, although I'd have to face it a few times to be sure it was a good tactic and not just a good game.

I'm still waiting to see what it feels like to get the first turn with this army...

Tuesday, 29 August 2017

Tale of Four Gamers: The Bloggers are Back In Town!

As I mentioned at the end of my last post, I expect to run a Tale for some old friends in the new year... guys, here are the rules I have adapted from my last one, have a read and let me know what you think. I'd like to think it encourages all aspects of the hobby, and hopefully isn't too gruelling a schedule, whilst allowing a fair degree of flexibility.

The participating blogs are, I assume...

Ginge. Here. This blog.
Rich
Chris
Ken

It's currently looking like we'll have two well aligned teams from the mutterings about who is taking an interest in what., although games can be played against any body, not just a participant - two of the competitors live far away, would be unfair to demand they play only within the group. We'll assume our little warbands are on a journey, they may not meet till near the journeys end for the climatic final battle...

Anyway, the rules... (apologies for the messy layout it didn't copy across from my google doc so well...)


Phase 1 will be from the 1st to the 28th of January. From 29th Jan to 11th February will be "catch up phase 1" Each 4 week challenge phase will have a separate late period phase where people can still earn points if they finish overrunning projects within the second deadline. I used to have this be part of the next phase but people could end up getting snowed under with it eating into the next phases time, so they would abandon it to concentrate on the new stuff.


If you have finished on time, you can use this period to try your hand at something else or to do prep work for the next phase, or even make a start if you so wish. The plan is to be fairly flexible with the time - if it's completed by a deadline, it scores. Doesn't matter if you started a few days early while waiting for Bob to catch up with last months workload...


Phase 2 will be 12th Feb to 11th Mar, late period to 24th.
Phase 3 will be 25th March to 21st April, late period to 5th May
Phase 4 will be 6th May to 2nd June, late period to 16th June.


At which point the project ends and we count up score.


During each phase the following points will be available.


Painting 500 points of stuff - 5 points
Getting a game in with your stuff - 5 points
Writing a narrative about your stuff - 5 points
Publishing a Blogpost detailing any or all of the above - 1 point


If you complete any of the first three in the late period, it is worth 3 points. The blogpost points don’t have a late score I’m afraid, as it isn’t worth it. If you do not complete a part, it scores 0.


I would recommend that in the first phase people stick to combat patrol style lists (just because if you're planning to get a game in this may be your best way) and I would also suggest introducing at least one character of some sort in order to begin your narrative... although if your terminator lord won't be in a combat patrol, hey use a squad sergeant as the guy and in your narrative, advance time between one phase and the next to give your character a promotion and a new model. Easy!





There will be some other points available over the course of the challenge, although these can be scored at any time you see fit as long as it is before the end.


Paint a set of objective markers. 1pt each, up to six.


In your narrative, make reference to real world events. I have previously given the example of Bonfire Night and the fireworks in an early Tale of Four Gamers, I am happy to mention this as this one takes place nowhere near November, so you can't steal that one! There are five points available for doing this, and you can score it up to twice... I like a few references to real life, but we are writing fiction here, not the nine o'clock news...


In your narrative, make reference to battles you have fought how they turned out. Nothing can develop the character of an army like grudges and trophies! 5 points available for this, again available up to twice, as while it adds interest we aren't Dwarves, we don't want just a list of grudges...


Finally, I plan to have a big battle finale involving all participants, date TBD although late June Early July is looking a strong possibility. If you guys would fancy taking a trip to Warhammer World to make a special occasion of it I’m all up for that too, we have plenty time to plan ahead. Obviously it will be painted models only. If by the time we get this game in you have managed to complete everything you pledged to complete over the course of the challenge (doesn’t matter on time, late, technically “never” completed… if it’s done by game day, you earn a bonus 10 points.


The eagle eyed among you will have spotted that gives a maximum possible score of 100, and yes the points costing for some of the bonus points might have ever so slightly been influenced with that in mind.


As this means technically we could end up with a draw, I shall have the same finale rules as last time - secret objectives, with the winning player on the winning team being crowned the overall champion if such a thing matters by that point… quite frankly, i hope us all having fully painted armies will make this last bit rather academic.

 

Saturday, 26 August 2017

Deathwatch; Ready for Third Outing

One thing that I do have to say about the deathwatch... I may cry over their points cost when I am looking at how few boots on the ground I have, but on the flip side, it makes for a quick army to paint... especially combined with a) simple colour scheme and b) my admittedly rather basic level of painting... but hey, I'm happy to call these done!

At the time of the first battle report, from a week and a half ago, I had 6 troopers and one vehicle painted. I have now completed the army... plus Artemis, who isn't in the army, but a nice model and it's nice to have options...


So that's 2130 points, in a little over two weeks. Not bad if I do say so myself...


As I said, they're to a fairly basic standard, I'm no pro painter, but it's a painted army and I'm happy with it.


Clearly still tacking the "as different to orks as possible" line, my projected next thousand points (we've always liked to play bigger games with more toys at my club, and now we're getting used to 8th can see this being the same) is only looking like 12 infantry (Inc 2 characters) and one more vehicle, plus adding back in a few of the upgrades I originally had in this list till I realised I had shot past my 2k target!

Finally, in other news, recently a friend who used to blog has been drawn back into the hobby by the joy of 8th. And another friend who never lost the love of the hobby but certainly had some restrictions to his hobby time has found time to blog again. Critically, these are two of the three people who joined me for my first, and best, tale of gamers. Every one since then has been an effort to recreate the joy of the first, but has always failed to live up to it, through people enthusiastically signing up, then slipping away. At one point one of my tales had 15 people signed up. I ended the tale halfway through because the only one keeping to the requirements even remotely was me.

So, we chased up the third, another who hasn't left the hobby but does have less time. He's game for a rerun. It'll be a closed session this time. Getting the band back together. You'll be able to read about it, but not participate I'm afraid. We've all got other things on the go right now to finish off, so we'll be starting in the new year. I'll put some details of the plan out closer to the time. We've already got vague ideas for who is doing what army and how the sides will stack up against each other. And am I orks again? No. I have done several tribes, and will do more, but not for this. For this, I fancy a change...

In the meantime, the boys are back in town...

Wednesday, 23 August 2017

Deathwatch Second Outing

So this time I was up against... well, this...

We were playing spearhead, in mission Retrieval.

I finished setting up first, and was poised to take the first turn. My opponent decided to try to seize... "let me just find that weighted dice" he joked.

"Ah, but now you've said that, we now won't believe you if you do seize" I joke back.

He rolls... a 6.

"erm..."

"Right" I say, still in jest "Roll it again to prove it isn't weighted"

Ha ha ha a good laugh is had by all, as he picks up the dice, casts it down the table... and rolls another 6.

"No no, it's not really"

Grabs dice, rolls again, gets a third 6. "SERIOUSLY?!?!"

"I didn't think you had weighted dice... I do NOW..."


Eventually, the dice started rolling other numbers, so we counted it as a seize, and he got to go first. He proceeded to decimate my forward shooting squad, just three survivors, who promptly teleported back out of range of the onslaught - hell, he was coming to me anyway, might as well stand back and soak it up now.

His forgefeinds proved brutally effective, although I wasn't helped by losing my stormshields ridiculously early. His terminators charged in and decimated one of the assault squads, but I spent command points to avoid losing first blood, which I took myself by killing the sorcerer - he'd already severely wounded himself with a miscast that smited 6 of my other shooting unit, so my firepower was severely curtailed from turn 2 onwards. I was left with watch master and assault squads trying valiantly to hold the centre against abaddon, terminators, forge fiends and chaos marines.

The watch master took abaddon out in combat after he'd received quite the peppering from my Corvus on a flypast. I had the survivors of the shooting units on an objective high in a building trying to blow up the forgefiends that were laying down fire into their position. The watch master was trying to finish off the terminator sergeant, and potentially reclaim an objective. At the end of turn 5, Rich was narrowly winning... I had fb, wl, lb, and one objective. He had 2 obj and a unit in LB. Unfortunately turn 6 he took out my terminators on the high objective. Losing me three points and my only realistic hope of killing his linebreaking forgefiends. The watchmaster being finished off in combat meant I was down to just a corvus and therefore legally tabled.

Overall, still a steep learning curve to switch from horde to elite army. At least I remembered my cluster launchers and auspex etc this time. It's just I've had two games now and been seized on both times. The first time got me a khorne army 12"+ closer. The second game lost me about 20% of my shooting, and several enemy units a hell of a lot closer. I'll feel a lot happier to give an assessment of how the army is doing if I can get at least one turn to go to plan. I know no plan survives contact with the enemy but, y'know, one turn might if you go first. Give me that one chance and lets see how we do from there...

Have a game lined up against elder next week, so at least I'll finally be battling xenos... plus they don't have a codex yet so hopefully we'll be on a more level playing field :P