So Jimmy took possession of his Kickstarter package a couple of days ago. Scott has had his notification and picks his up on Monday, and I’m still waiting to be told when mine is coming.
Jimmy handed me the Scourge portion of his Starter yesterday and we set about assembling our starter fleets ready for a trial run today.
We had overlooked the inclusion of the starter scenario, so we set up a modified version of Scenario 1 with only 2 clusters and no Debris.
Our forces were the Starter packs, but for those that haven’t got a hold of the game yet we fielded as follows:
Scourge : 3 Battlegroups
BG1 : Wyvern Cruiser (close combat specialist)
BG2 : Shenlock Heavy Cruiser (all rounder Heavy Cruiser with Stealth capabilities), 2 x Gargoyle Strike Carriers (troop carriers)
BG3 : Ifrit Cruiser (Ship to Ship vessel with Burnthrough Weapon), 2 x Harpy Frigates (All round small ships)
UCM : 3 Battlegroups
BG1 : Moscow Heavy Cruiser (well armed all rounder), 2 x New Orleans Strike Carriers (Troops Carriers)
BG2 : Berlin Cruiser (Ship to Ship with Burnthrough Laser), 2 x Toulon Frigates (All round Gunships)
BG3 : Seattle Cruiser (All rounder with launchable Fighters and Bombers)
Turn 1 saw 2 Battlegroups move onto the table for each side, all in Silent Running.
Jimmy Activated first, moving up his Berlin and going Weapons Free with his Toulons, managing to do no damage whatsoever. I countered with my Shenlong, which fired upon his frigates inflicting 2 damage on 1 of them, and dropped my Gargoyles into the atmosphere ready to drop troops.
Jimmy then moved up his Seattle, firing on my Wyvern and launching Bombers. After the firing had stopped, he had inflicted 4 points of Damage.
My Wyvern responded, moving up to point blank and unleashing my Occulus Beams and Plasma Tempest. Through my good rolling and Jimmy’s failure to roll virtually any saves, the Seattle ended up with 2 HP left. I rolled on the Critical chart – a 5 then a 6 – the Ship took another 3 pts of damage and exploded, inflicting 2 pts of radtiation damage in revenge. My Wyvern crawled out of the encounter with 4HP left.
Wrapping up, I dropped 2 Infantry onto the Cluster on the right.
Jimmy started the turn, winning the initiative with a roll-off to activate his Moscow and Toulons. The Toulons piled into my Ifrit, bringing it down to 3 pts of damage, and the Moscow engaged my Shenlong Weapons Free, doing a moderate amount of damage.
My Ifrit and Harpys responded, the Harpys firing into the 2 Toulons and destroying them both. The Ifrit fired at the Moscow with it’s single beam mode Burnthrough weapon, and inflicted 3 damage.
The Wyvern activated, destroying one of the Strike Carriers. Jimmy’s Berlin responded, destroying my Wyvern, whilst the surviving Strike Carrier prepared to drop troops.
The turn ended with both side’s carriers dropping ground groups onto their respective clusters.
With Jimmy owning the left side of the table and me owning the right, we jostled ship positions and scored, grabbing a VPs each.
Turn 5 and 6
Due to the UCM’s early losses, at this point it was a foregone conclusion. The scourge swept across the board, taking down the Berlin and dropping armoured groups onto the left Cluster. The ground fight was over quickly as the 2 Scourge armour units overpowered the 1 infantry and 1 Armour UCM units.
The game ended 8 VPs to 3, with Jimmy’s chronically bad rolling handing me the game on a platter.
Thoughts on the game
Although it turned very 1 sided quite quickly due to some really dodgy dice rolling, we both enjoyed the game and went away thinking about fleet compositions and tactics. The Order choices and movement restrictions really bite home when you get close in, and Close Action combat is extremely fierce.
We definitely did a few things wrong, but by the end of the game we had a good feel for the general rules.
The size of the demo table (2ft x 3ft) belies the scope of the whole game in my opinion, and we are really looking forward to moving to larger fleets and full scenarios.
The models are absolutely gorgeous, it has to be said, and are incredibly simple to assemble. That said, I did find some items on the Scourge sprues to be damaged, and some of the wing tips cracked as I was de-spruing them.
The ship bases, whilst a good idea in theory, are far too fiddly to use in game, especially when you end up with a lot of ships near each other (and this will always happen at some point). We are already investigating alternate solutions.
Overall, the game gets a big thumbs up from us, and we will be playing plenty of games in the near future.
Now where’s my Kickstarter….