Friday, January 27, 2017

This week's 5150: Star Marine play test

Yesterday, I helped Ed do some more play testing on 5150: Star Marine. I used the same Star as last week's session, a Rep 5 Pirate. I also used the one surviving member of the crew, another Rep 5 Pirate.

First thing we did, was to determine what was currently happening in the universe. Things were getting hot in Ring 2 (where we were) and I felt it might be a good time to relocate operations. In Ring 4 war between Gaea Prime and the Hishen Empire had broken out. In Ring 6 reports of an upswing of piracy were flowing in- hmm...sounded like Ring 6 was the place to be.

Travelling to Ring 6 would take a month (game time). While en route, I thought that maybe since there was a war currently going on between Gaea Prime and the Hishen Empire, maybe we should stop at the local Gaea Prime Star Navy  naval base when we entered Sector 1 of Ring 6, and see about obtaining a letter of marque to legally attack any Hishen pirates in the ring. I figured that'd also make a good cover to hide our true nature. We needed to arrive in Ring 6 first before we could do that, though.

Coming through the jump gate, we ran into two other vessels - a couple of free traders

The larger trader was commanded by a Rep 5 captain with the "Cruel" attribute. The second trader had a Rep 4 captain with "Dim" as his attribute.

I opted to try to "Talk the Talk" with the Rep 5 captain, but it didn't go to favorably, so I attacked his ship. The other trader captain tried to stay out of the way

Fighting went back and forth between all three ships. Our ship managed to avoid being damaged while damaging both of the free traders and, ultimately, forcing both to surrender

When the battle finished, rolls for each trader captain were made on the Terms of Surrender table, and both ships could be captured, plundered, and their crews set adrift in life pods. So, me and my first mate would have 3 ships altogether - this presented a bit of a dilemma; what to do with a third ship, since I would be piloting our pirate vessel and the first mate would have to pilot one of the other 2. Well being a greedy pirate, I didn't want lose one of those prize ships because we didn't have another crew member in our band to spare to pilot the third ship. Remembering that the Rep 4 Free Trader captain wasn't combative or rude to me at the start of the encounter, I had the first mate try to recruit him, and his crew, to become part of our merry band. Rolls were made - Free Trader had 1 success and my first mate had 3 successes, so the Free Trader decided that it might be profitable to join us, as our fence and smuggler.

The other Free Trader captain was a rude fellow at the beginning of the encounter, so I didn't bother to give him the chance to join us, and just forced him and his entire crew into a life pod and ejected it.

I went back to my ship, left the first mate on the deserted Free Trader, and had the other Free Trader follow us to the sector starbase. The planet was a Class 1 Garden World, with a good starport and a Gaea Prime Star Navy base.

After landing, Me, my first mate, and the trader captain went to the Star Navy base to see about getting that letter of marque to attack Hishen vessels in the Ring. We went to Admiralty Office and applied for the letter.

 Ed figured out which set of tables to roll on to determine if the Gaea Prime Star Navy would issue a letter of marque to us - I made the roll and - success!

Next we decided to head into the starport proper. Walking down one of the port's thoroughfares, we encountered a couple of ne'er-do-wells - pirates. Just the kind of scum we were looking for!

 Since my first mate has better modifiers when trying to recruit people, I decided to let him do the talking. He convinced both pirates to join us. Walking around some more, we ran into 3 more people - 2 civilians and a criminal. I let the first mate talk with the criminal, and he became a member of our little troupe.

So we had added 3 more people - 1 Rep 4 pirate, 1 Rep 3 pirate, and 1 Rep 4 thief. All had Soft Body armor and Auto 3 weapons.

We still needed one more crew member, so we recruited 1 of the civilians, a Rep 3 female food service worker, to be the ship's cook and an erstwhile boarding party member. She had Soft Body armor and we gave her a pistol.

Since we now had a full ship's complement, I told the Free Trader captain to go ahead and take his ship and make his normal runs, and we would contact him after we finished running our own little endeavor.

Before leaving the planet, I decided to sell the spare Free Trader ship, since we didn't really need it. It brought me 3 Fame Points.

Lifting off and breaking orbit, we went in search of something to plunder. We managed to get the drop on a Hishen ship. We bluffed them into thinking that we were part of the local system defense force conducting a standard safety inspection.

We made the boarding attempt on Section 2(crew quarters) of their ship. Unfortunately, we triggered some boarding counter-measures - the section went on lock down with crew coming up behind us to repel us.

We were only met by 4 Hishen Marines, all Rep 4 with Soft Body armor and Auto 3 weapons. They won the roll for Advantage, so they went first.

Each Hishen lining up across from the boarding party member they would shoot at, the first Hishen (top right of picture) proceeded to open fire on the cook, scoring an Out Of Fight on her

The second Hishen took his shot at the Rep 3 pirate and scored an Obviously Dead result against him

So far this whole thing is going sideways. The next Hishen Marine flubs his shot and the Rep 4 pirate returns fire, and rolls good enough to grease the ugly little clone with an Obviously Dead result

Well, this didn't sit well with his clone brother, so Hishen number four let rip with his weapon and dropped the Rep 4 thief with an Out Of Fight result

Once the shooting was over, Will to Fight rolls were made, and the Hishen only passed 1d6, so 2 of the Hishen Marines decided to retreat back the way they came, leaving their leader to face us. We, however, didn't do much better on our Will to Fight roll, and ended up in Duck Back, because the section was in lock down and normally one of our band would have had to Leave the Battle if the section wasn't locked down.

Next it was time to activate and our side recovered from Duck Back, each figure turning around. The Hishen fired and missed, allowing the Rep 4 pirate to Return Fire, which he rolled an Out Of Fight result on the Hishen. The Rep 4 pirate then went to check to make sure the 2 Hishen lying on the deck were indeed neutralized. In both checks, each Hishen managed a parting shot before dying, but luckily, the only results for the Rep 4 pirate were a couple of Duck Backs. Once everybody gathered themselves together, we proceeded to enter Section 1, the ship's bridge; boy was that a mistake - 4 Hishen Marines, a Grath, and a Razor (I flubbed up the Who Are They roll), were waiting to tear us new ones

Advantage was rolled for and, true to form, we lost it, so the other side opened up - the first Hishen scoring an Out Of Fight result on the Rep 4 pirate. The next 2 Hishens caused me and the first mate to Duck Back, and the Grath Charged Into Melee with me from behind. Then the Razor performed a Mental Blast, making the first mate Obviously Dead. She got an Out Of Fight result on me, but I rolled Star Power dice to try and lessen the damage, ending up with a result of Duck Back.

Next turn the Grath and I meleed, and I was again knocked Out Of Fight. Again, I rolled Star Power dice and this time Carried On, but the Razor decided to lay into me with another Mental Blast, this time scoring an Obviously Dead result. I rolled Star Power dice and - NOTHING

Well. I wasn't about to die on a Hishen vessel, so I used Cheating Death and that was the end of this disastrous escapade

"After the failed boarding attempt, the Hishen jettisoned the bodies of the boarders, before rapidly departing the system. One odd thing, they didn't destroy the pirates' small ship, leaving it adrift. The lifeless bodies of the pirates also drifted, towards their ship. The thruster pack on one of the bodies suddenly ignited, and the seemingly dead owner of it deftly maneuvered to the pirate ship. Shortly after the lone survivor of the ill-fated piracy attempt, boarded the ship, its engines roared to life and it made its way out of the system."

Thursday, January 26, 2017

5150: Star Marine Play Test Part 2 cancelled

Things conspired against me from writing Part 2 of last week's play test, so I'm cancelling the report in favor of writing a different report on this week's play test session.

"Ph'nglui mglw'nafh Cthulhu R'lyeh wgah'nagl fhtagn"

This mysterious tome appeared today -

Dare I crack the cover and peruse the dark writings within? Do I value my life, let alone my sanity? The Old Ones beckon...

Sunday, January 22, 2017

5150: Star Marine Play Test Part 1

This past Friday, I got to do some play testing of Two Hour Wargames soon to be released 5150: Star Marine.

Star Marine allows your Star to take the role of a Star Marine from one of several factions, or play, as I chose to, a pirate. The rules allow you to create a background for your Star, similar to the way you create a Star's background in Fringe Space. There are rules that allow you to create your boarding party quickly and easily. You are able to determine their Rep, the armor they are wearing, and the weapon they carry. You can even determine their attribute if you care to give them one.

My Star is Rep 5, from Ring 2, Sector 2, and a Class 2 world (Barren w/ breathable atmosphere). His attributes are Born Leader, Crack Shot, and Genius. He is armed with an Auto 3 weapon and he has Exo-armor. He also started with 5 Fame Points (these are similar to Rep d6).

My boarding party is comprised of 5 other individuals. The first is a Rep 5 Basic with an Auto 4 weapon and Exo-armor. The second and third party members were both Rep 4 Basics with Auto 3 weapons and Hard Body armor. The final two party members were both Rep 3 Basics with Auto 3 weapons and Soft Body armor. I decided not to give any of the boarding party members an attribute.

Creating my Star and his boarding team

After I created my Star and his boarding party, I determined which Ring that me and my merry band would operate in. Well, because of my phenomenal dice rolling luck, we ended up deep in Gaea Prime space, Ring 2 (Oh joy). This meant that there could be a high probability of this endeavor ending as quickly as it began, I mean GP military ships are more than a match for a simple pirate raider. Next was the roll to determine the specific location that my band and I operated out of. That roll was a little consolation, we were in the system location that contained the jump point, so at least we had a chance to escape if the excrement hit the ventilation blower.

For the first mission, I decided to make it a Space one (you can either go on a Space mission or a Planetary one). I figured if I was serious about living the life of a Space Pirate, I had better plunder some hapless merchant ship ASAP.

First thing about boarding a ship, is deciding how you're going to do that. One way is to randomly roll for the section of the ship your boarding party will enter through. Another way is to pick the section to board through and attempt a Free Fall maneuver. Each member of your boarding party has to make the roll against their Rep. If you pass 2d6, you successfully board through your chosen ship section. If you pass 1d6, you miss the chosen section, but end up entering in a different section. If you pass 0d6, well, you're S.O.L. and will miss the ship entirely, drifting off into space. Suffice it to say, you really want your boarding party to have high Reps if you plan on using a Free Fall boarding. Well, 2 of my boarding party members were Rep 3, so I thought it best to randomly roll for our entry point. No sense in losing a third of my people in a boarding attempt.

Rolling on the proper ship's map, we ended up entering through the thrusters section, which is the furthest section from the bridge. Once aboard, we were met by 6 members of the ship's crew, that weren't too happy to see us...

Part 2 "Let's get this (Boarding) Party Started"

Saturday, January 21, 2017

Another delay...

I decided to take my time on the 5150: Star Marine play test report I'm working on. I want to do a decent report on it, so please bear with me. Thanks.

Friday, January 20, 2017

Change of plans..

Things haven't gone quite the way I hoped for this week. I wasn't able to play 5150: No Quarter like I had planned to. Been trying to get my old job back, but have been getting the run around, plus other "real-life" distractions made gaming nearly impossible, up until today that is. I went over to Ed the Two Hour Wargames Guy's place to help him do some last minute play testing on 5150: Star Marine.

Instead of posting about 5150: No Quarter, like I intended to, I will post something a little later, either sometime tonight or tomorrow, about the play test session. Man, the game is one of THW's best to date. Cannot wait for the official release.

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Got a little sidetracked...

I kind a got sidetracked working on zombies. The middle of this past week, I meant to post on this blog about something that is currently on the workbench, now that I finished painting a little over 100 zombies in a week - There are 24 Battletech Alpha Strike mechs in the paint queue. I have been painting them the past couple of days and they're nearly done. I will post photos of them fairly soon, once they are finished.

Some of the games I really want to make an effort to play this year are All Things Zombie - Final Fade Out, 5150: Fighter Command, and 5150: No Quarter, hence, the 24 mechs now on the workbench. I've got the minis ready for ATZ, next will be the minis for No Quarter. For Fighter Command I'm going to be using fighters in a scale larger than most people play that game in. I've got about a half dozen starfighter kits that I still have to assemble and paint, so that'll be in a later post.

I probably won't post the zombie stuff on this blog, because I already have another blog that is devoted to wargaming the zombie apocalypse, The Quick and the Zed: Death Warmed Over

I am hoping to get in a game of 5150: No Quarter in the coming week and I hope to post an AAR soon afterward.