Saturday, April 19, 2008

Thoughts on Campaigns and Scenarios.

Scenarios and campaign gaming are a huge part of why I love the GW hobby. Maybe its my role-playing roots at work, but I love telling a story and developing it over time. My Angels of Absolution did most of their fighting in the Biletrus system from 1995-1998 (mostly against Eldar and fractious Sisters of Battle under the sway of a Radical Inquistor gone too far) and had been fighting in the Tyrgon system from 1999-2006, mostly against the very dishonest and untrustworthy Tau. Their true, most secretive calling is the hunt for a Fallen battle brother named Hortikar who continues to flee deeper into the Eastern Fringe. All of these details add depth to my army that tournament play can never give.

Shortly after I joined the Nerd Night crew I ran a slow escalation campaign set on Tyrgon V revolving primarily around Imperial forces, the Tau, and Snakebite Orks. The storyline didn't really get fully fleshed out until the campaign was nearing its end (and some of the superfluous armies dropped by the wayside - like the Necrons), and for me, that's when we finally had something in place worth fighting about.

In the coming months we'll be starting a new campaign involving the Black Ships and the hunt for psychers run by Scott from Citizen Nick Hobby Center and I'm looking forward to it. However, since we have a few weeks in between, I want to revisit Tyrgon V and play out a few of the sub plots I envisioned, as well as the grand conclusion that we wrote about but never played out.

Below is a scenario I brainstormed last night and this morning and that I'd like to play on Tuesday. It pits the Varrian 10th Imperial Guard, the battered heroes of Tyrgon V, against the barbaric Snakebites marauding through the ruined city of Andelon. Lt Tonius has a crippling wound and is separated from his regiment. His microbead has gone dead and he's alone in the ruins. His only option, a signal flare he found in a wrecked Chimera he managed to drag himself into. He hopes it will draw his brothers in arms and he fully knows it will also draw his Ork pursuers. His only hope, launch the flare and then crawl into the cover of one of the nearby buildings and pray to the Emperor the Varrian 10th find him before the Snakebites do.


An Imperial Officer, Lt Tonius, is wounded and down behind enemy lines. His microbead is malfunctioning so his only option was to shoot a signal flare and go into hiding until help arrived. You have tracked the signal flare to this sector of Andelon and must sweep the buildings until you’ve found your downed officer - if he’s still alive! Ork Boyz have also seen the flare and are in pursuit as well.

Primary: Find Our Man!
The wounded officer is hiding in one of the buildings, but neither side knows which one. At the beginning of each player turn make a standard Reserve Roll. If the Officer appears pick a building and roll a scatter die. On a hit he deploys in the building you have chosen. Otherwise the sighting was unconfirmed and he stays in hiding. Continue to roll as a Reserve unit at the start of each player turn until he appears. The objective is claimed by holding the building he is in. The player with a unit occupying this building at the end of the game is the winner. If neither side has any units occupying the building at the end of the game, the primary objective is a draw. 4 points for a win, 2 points each for a draw.

Secondary: Plant the Flag. Both forces are seeking to clear the enemy from this sector. This is achieved through occupying city ruins. When a city ruin is occupied, the unit doing so ‘plants a flag’ in that city ruin, and may move off to do so in more city ruins. The ‘flag’ remains until an enemy Scoring Unit occupies the ruin, at which point it plants its own flag instead. The player with the most flags planted at the end of the game wins the secondary objective. 3 points for a win, 1 point each for a draw.

Tertiary: Demonstrate Superiority. Beat your opponent by 251 Victory points or more to win the Tertiary Objective. 2 points for a win, 1 point if neither side achieves this objective.

Gama: Cityfighting Stratagems, Dusk and Dawn, Victory Points.

1 Divide the table into four quarters. Both players roll a dice, the player with the highest score picks which quarter to deploy in. The other player’s deployment zone is the opposite quarter.
2 Declare the use of stratagems, as detailed in the Cityfighting Stratagems chapter.
3 Starting with the player that scored the lowest, the players take it in turns, deploying a unit at a time until both armies are fully deployed. Units are deployed in the following order: Troops, Heavy Support, Elites, HQ, Fast Attack. No unit can be deployed withing 18" of the enemy or within 12" of the center of the table at the start of the game.
4 Roll a D6. The player with the highest score may choose whether to go first or second.

GAME LENGTH: The game lasts 6 turns.

Note: Those familiar with the scenarios at Adepticon will quickly note I ripped off their 3 Objective system. I really like the way this system forces you to concentrate on multiple goals at once - it really adds depth to the scenario. The points are such that if you've dominated the terrain and you've done serious damage to the opposing army you can still be victorious even if the other side has secured Lt Tonius. His rescue or capture will do little good if you need rescuing yourself.

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