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The Battle of Hoth (1st attempt)

PostPosted: Thu Apr 01, 2010 2:23 am
by Talarius
Hi all,

The Battle of Hoth took place on Saturday, March 27th.  We'd never played BrikWars before, so we probably did some stuff wrong.  I don't see a lot of people going over the details of the game rules (or their mods of the rules) in their batreps, but I am tempted to do so a little bit here and there to explain how we got on.  Hopefully you'll enjoy the purty pictures. :)

Rebel Snowspeeder pilots shot down by the Empire (or possibly just crashed due to incompetence) needed to escape back to Echo Base.  If the Rebels managed to get their pilots off their own board edge, they would win the battle.  If the Imperials managed to kill the pilots, they would win.

The Rebels had a Snowspeeder held in reserve as well as an open-topped "Keystone Copvan" that carried a pilot, 2 passengers and a gunner.
The Imperials had several units in reserve: An AT-ST, 3x speeder-bikes, 1x light dropship w/pilot and 3 stormtroopers, 5x stormtroopers on foot.

Here's the initial setup of our forces:


The Rebel's last line of defense.  These guys didn't do much shooting at first:

The view from inside the base:

The Rebels had three "Attack Zambonis," two of which were on the far left flank.  I gave these things 2d10 armor, which may have been too much? They had a Size 2 gun and 2x Size 1 rockets.

The Imperial positions:

Turn 1:
The Rebels got the first turn, and in a show of utter contempt for the Empire, the pilots chose to walk and shoot, taunting the Imperials.  First Blood went to this guy -

Poor "Jonesy 27639153" -- or was it 152?  I could never remember.

There were a handful of senior Clone Troopers at the battle.  The Rebels kept calling them "Grandpas".  This mini AT-ST pilot showed the young 'uns how to get it done by headshotting one of those pilots.

An Attack Zamboni takes out a Snowtrooper on the edge of the battle.  The Imperials were dropping like flies in Turn One:

Turn 2:
"Luke" uses his, uh, beamsaber to shoot a Clone Trooper.  This was his second kill. (He was not used as a Hero,  I gave him the beamsaber hilt just for the heck of it, we still used it as a 2-handed rifle)

The reinforcements start to arrive.  The Rebels got both their Snowspeeder and Keystone Copvan on Turn 2. The Imperials got the light dropship and a couple foot-sloggers.

Pop! The Grandpas in the mini AT-ST are discovering that their rifles are more useful than the guns on the vehicle.  For whatever reason, they just couldn't seem to hit a thing with the walker guns.  So, they took aim and popped the turret off the Attack Zamboni.

Redshirt!  The pilot of the now turret-less Zamboni jumped 5" in front of Han Solo to take the shot for him.  What a hero.

Kaboom! The center Attack Zamboni puts a Mk1 rocket into the mini AT-ST.  It did nothing to the vehicle armor, but killed both Grandpa Troopers.  We now had one Zamboni and one mini AT-ST moving at full speed across the table with nobody on-board.

Make that three pilot-less vehicles.  An Imperial missile-station gets revenge on the Attack Zamboni, killing its pilot with a Mk2 missile.

I'm pretty sure it was at this point that we started changing the rules.  We were playing on a 4 foot x 4 foot area and the weapon ranges just weren't long enough.  The Rebel defense line was just sitting there, FAR out of range.  The same went for the Imperial missile stations and E-Web blaster cannons.  We decided (after finding rules updates to the 2005 PDF online and adjusting a couple things accordingly) that pistols were 8" range, rifles were 12", vehicle and field guns were 18" range.  
We also modified how hits were accrued on vehicles.  Damage equal to the armor roll caused one hit. Damage in excess of the armor roll was compared to the Size of the vehicle. Each time excess damage matched the vehicle Size, an additional hit was applied.  For example, a Size 4 Attack Zamboni that rolled 14 for armor against 20 damage would take 2 hits; against 22 damage points, it would take 3.  I'm not sure if I set vehicle armor too high, or under-powered my rockets, but the vehicles weren't taking much general damage, they were just getting their weapons popped off by rifle fire, which didn't feel right to us.

Anyway, carrying on:
The Imperial Hero, "Sorta Fett" and a Snowtrooper were moving up on Han Solo.  We couldn't figure out how to shoot at mounted units (whether the shot hits the rider or mount), so... I can't remember if we just decided to kill the Tauntaun or rolled for it, but the Tauntaun went down.  Han, of course, being the brave Hero, immediately took cover.

Turn 3:
Klank! Klank! Klank!  The AT-ST arrives.  Sadly, this big guy has puny little guns.  :-(  It was odd, as this was the biggest vehicle on the board in terms of height, but it had *tiny* little guns.  Oh well, it looked cool and that was its main job, I guess.  We were wishing for machine-gun style weapon rules for this guy.  We should have just fudged the weapon sizes, I guess.  Live and learn.
The Rebel Attack Zamboni killed a Snowtrooper with a Mk1 rocket, the missile-station gunner retaliates, popping the turret off the Zamboni.  The AT-ST puts a point of general damage on it.  After firing it's 2nd rocket, the Zamboni was completely unarmed, so the pilot climbed out of his seat and, using the Zamboni for cover, engaged in rifle-fire exchange with the Imperials.

The Imperials also got their first speeder-bike on the table this turn.

Turn 4 (probably):
Maybe it was Turn 5, I don't know.  Anyway, this Imperial officer had seen the approaching runaway Zamboni, but bravely held his ground in order to direct the fire of his missle-station gunner.  Then he got smushed:

[The rules for Bailing never seemed to come up at a convenient time, as most figures had already used their Actions to shoot by the time something really important came along, like dodging out of the way of an out-of-control military vehicle!  Sorta Fett had used his Super-Soldier Cliche earlier to dodge some shots but that was about it.  On that topic, other attempted Feats were "Han Shot First" countered by, "No, Greedo did" as well as Sorta Fett's, "Normally I'd need 6's to hit, but because I'm so awesome I only need 4's."  He was also allowed to dual-wield his pistols throughout the game.]

Turn 5? 6?:
Speaking of Feats, Han pulled off the highlight Feat of the Game.  He had retreated from his Tauntaun carcass to cower behind a Rebel Turret-tower when opportunity struck:  The Imperial dropship had reached the edge of the Defense Line at the same time as the mini AT-ST.  Han saw his chance, ran out, clambered up the mini AT-ST's legs into the cockpit and fired off a Mk1 rocket, RIGHT into the belly of the dropship at point-blank range.  Then he rolled a 10 and followed it up with a 7.  The wimpy 1d10 armor dropship was already 50% damaged and went kaboom!
The pilot and two stormtroopers were killed, the third was thrown clear.  The speeder-bike was caught in the explosion and blew up as well, throwing its pilot clear.  This was deemed Maximum Awesome carnage and seemed like the kind of thing Han just *might* have pulled off on a good day.

Sorta Fett had popped the Size 3 laser cannon off the Keystone Copvan, so they retaliated by ramming him into the side of a commandeered Attack Zamboni. Ouch!  Fortunately, Sorta Fett's armor protected him from the improvised attack and he survived.

UN-fortunately, those rebel pilots had made it back to base! (that lazy pilot sitting in the deck tram never did a single thing the whole battle! @#%^&!)

We'd been playing for far too long and called the game here.  We were pleased with the level of carnage we had created on the tabletop.

From Turn 2, it had been pretty clear that the pilots were going to escape, but we were fine with just seeing what would happen.  It was pretty amusing.  I think we'll stick with the weapon ranges we came up with.  I would probably try to increase the power of the vehicle and field guns, as they just felt too wimpy.  We didn't like the way we had to resort to infantry rifles popping weapons off when there were all these AT guns on the table that couldn't penetrate the armor values.  (I'm not complaining, btw, just explaining what I think I'll do next time)

I came up with stats for all the vehicles before we started, but we never worked out army points totals or bothered to check that there was any kind of equality between the two forces.  We just went for it.  Now I'm thinking about how I'd run this game length-wise on an 8x4 table using an AT-AT.  :-)

Thanks for reading.  Hope you enjoyed it!

PostPosted: Thu Apr 01, 2010 3:24 am
by Tuefish
Quite a decent brikwar. Well done.
I love the Styrofoam snow, I LOL'd at the attack Zamboni, and I wondered what those flame pieces were.

PostPosted: Thu Apr 01, 2010 6:28 am
by legacymedia92
I like it but excpt on the AT-ST the armor should have been 1D10 and rockets should be level 4 at least

PostPosted: Thu Apr 01, 2010 9:34 am
by Theblackdog
Really a well done game.  You learned several lessons in a single battle that it took me several games to figure out.  

How were you handling vehicle hit points?

PostPosted: Thu Apr 01, 2010 11:47 am
by stubby
Love it.  I've been wanting to do a styrofoam hoth battle for years.

PostPosted: Thu Apr 01, 2010 3:22 pm
by Talarius
Thanks for the kind words.  :D

The flames, smoke, "fast move" and some of the blood tokens are all made by Litko Aerosystems.

Rockets should have been level 4!?  Wow!  Well, most of the vehicles had tiny 1" long rockets, so that's what we used them as.  The Imperial missile stations had 2" rockets.  But, as I said, I think we didn't make them powerful enough.  Next time we will certainly bump them up.

I gave the mini AT-ST 2d10 armor, which was probably too much, but I was trying to balance the vehicles between the two sides.  The Rebels had 2d10 Zambonis, 2d10 Turret Towers and the 2d10 Snowspeeder.  The only thing the Imperials had that seemed beefy was the big AT-ST, which I set at 3d10.  Everything else was either no armor (E-web cannons, missile stations) or 1d10 (dropship, speeder-bikes) so I felt like I needed to give them something a little survivable.

Vehicle hit points:
If you mean how did we track damage, we used the same little square "blood" lego pips and attached them to the vehicles.  Hit-point totals matched their size, so...

Size 6: Snowspeeder, Keystone Cop-van
Size 4: AT-ST, Attack Zambonis, Rebel turret towers, Imperial light Dropship
Size 3: Mini AT-ST, Imperial Speeder bikes (hmm, probably too many hit points, but they had low armor to compensate)

Thanks again!

PostPosted: Thu Apr 01, 2010 10:07 pm
by Pvt Expendable
Dang  I wanted At-AT's

PostPosted: Thu Apr 01, 2010 10:20 pm
by pesgores
Nice alternative to baseplates. Approved.

PostPosted: Thu Apr 01, 2010 11:17 pm
by Cpt. Zipps
Now that's saying something.

PostPosted: Fri Apr 02, 2010 1:25 pm
by Craigallot
Very good for a first battle. It was indeed pretty clear from the start the rebels were gonna win but meh, there was blood.