Pimp My Board Game

a pursuit of fruitless endeavors and endless refinements

Category: 6×6 gaming challenge 2017 (Page 1 of 6)

Dropzone Commander Winter Campaign, Game 3

After painting up my Marine Force Recon group for Dropzone Commander, I thought I’d be all set for our next Winter Campaign game but at the last minute, I decided to switch gears and go back to playing the Feral side of Resistance and play with the Skulltaker and Berserkers I painted up a while back.

This build (now at 1,600 points) would need another unpainted group of minis, my Occupation Veteran infantry. So here it was again, furiously painting up a set of minis right before a game.

At least 10mm is quick. Not a lot of need for detail and even when they kind of look like garbage, a dark wash tends to bring it all in line.

With that set, I created my list and headed over to Funtastic Games to hit the Winter Campaign, Game 3.

Eventually the Force Builder will get updated to correct that Berserkers error.  Also, from winning the first two matches, I had an extra 20 points to spend on a future match so I used it on this one.  It basically let me add another stand of Attack ATVs.

This list was inundated with infantry.  It had at least one of each infantry type I could take: Resistance Fighters, Occupation Veterans, and Berserkers, along with a variety of wheeled infantry like the Freeriders and Attack ATVs.   All this would be nice because we were playing a Focal Point scenario: Bunker Assault from Reconquest Phase 1.

My opponent this time was the other Resistance player and so we had a nice civil war game set up with his Allied Resistance facing off against my Feral Resistance. Due to the maps being choked with debris and tight buildings, I can never get any use out of my Thunderstorm hovercraft but ironically, we played on this super open, debris-less map and it would have been perfect for it.

My opponent wasn’t sporting a Thunderstorm but did have the command-less cousin, the big Leviathan and he loaded it down with tons of anti-aircraft guns and Gunwagons.  That thing was going to be a bitch with all the flyers I had in my list.

Speaking of aircraft, we did add another environmental effect to this scenario: Storms.  On a 3+ at the start of each round, a violent storm rips through the playfield and all aircraft must roll two dice when they activate. If they roll snake-eyes (1-1), the craft is destroyed by the storm.

Things started off well enough and we had the storm hit us on round 1. We started bringing in our aircraft and nothing was affected until my opponent brought in his main infantry transport and it had horrible luck and was obliterated by the storm. The resulting explosion destroyed two of the three APCs he had.  Luckily enough, his infantry survived the APC explosions.  A pretty bad blow as his list was really light on infantry, the rest of them being made up of underground Freerider motorcycles that had to wait on the underground breach drill to surface and provide a path up.

The rest of the round was quite on the Storm front with no other weather casualties.  I brought most of my units into the center with my battle buses and Typhoon attack helicopters taking my right side to flank.

My opponent didn’t want to put out too far but did send his pair of Typhoons around the opposite side. Apparently we were taught at the same battle school.

Round two saw the Storm effect completely dissipate and my opponent’s breach drill arrives on the scene.  I win initiative and send my Typhoons over and they completely obliterate the drill.  I had some really hot dice and my opponent called out the damage and said the drill was destroyed at the time but at the end of match, he reviewed the stats on the drill and we may have got the armor vs weapons wrong and it may have actually survived my initial attack. Regardless, as the photo shows, we done destroyed the sucker.

This was horrible news for those Allied Resistance fighters as all those Freerider cycles were stuck in the underground tunnel with no way to get into the fight.

My opponent couldn’t let my Typhoons sit there blowing things up so he disgorged a ton of Gunwagon anti-air trucks and they took down one Typhoon and left the other with one health remaining.

I dropped out my Hannibal Main Battle Tanks and my Comander Alexander and they started ripping apart those Gunwagon trucks and used their big guns to start chipping away at the Leviathan hovercraft.

At the start of Round 3, I won initiative again and had my Battle Bus troops ready so I swung them out and around and had they launch everything at the rest of the Gunwagon trucks to wipe them out. The Battle Buses are fun because infantry can fire out the firing ports using their weapons.  When those weapons are a ton of RPGs and overclocked Scourge laser rifles, those buses can start laying down some serious firepower.  Mounted on top of the buses are also so Anti-Air guns of their own to help keep the enemy aircraft away as well.  Their only downside is the lack of countermeasures (meaning they can be shot at from across the map) and they are slow.

I had my Freeriders get into the main central building for protection and a nice striking platform and the Berserkers went inside as well in case my red Skulltaker gets shot down as well.

My opponent inches his Typhoons into striking distance and I can feel any minute, he’s going to go full bore and launch all that anti-armor force into my main ground forces.

Still in the early part of round 3, we can see that the main battleline for this game is along that main diagonal across the center of the shot. My armor is cutting through the middle and right side while his armor and heavy hitters are coming through on my left.

My opponent launches his contingent of flame wagons and melts my Berserkers down to two lonely guys. Those guys really don’t like fire.  I’ll start calling them my ‘Hounds. The other set of flame wagons pull a big whiff on the other building and don’t kill any of my Freeriders.  It was a pretty dismal roll with nothing by 1s and 2s showing on 12 dice. Brutal.

I work on the Leviathan hovercraft a bit more and bring it down to 3 health left.  My opponent decides to start his main assault and brings his Cyclone Helicopters sneakily along the large two central buildings where my anti-air Gunwagons can’t get a shot.  They then unload all their limited heavy missiles into my Command Alexander tank sitting under the middle bridge.  In another string of bad luck, all missiles either miss or fail to deal damage.  He also set up a nice barrage of missiles to launch at my Gunwagons in the back. Being indirect fire weapons, the front flame wagons spot for the Cyclones and even with the penalty, he lands the template weapon right on top of them.  These are always tough little trucks but Energy 10 template weapon against an armor 6 truck is no contest.  Rolls of 2+ damage them and 4+ destroys them.  My opponent rolls all 1s.

At this point, my opponent is pretty frustrated and decides to concede the match.  It was a pretty crappy situation and the awful dice rolls just made the game no fun for him to continue on.  We talked for a bit as I hoped that maybe taking a little break would bring him back but it didn’t really help. We limped through a few little “what-if” turns but it was obvious it wasn’t making anything better so we called it and I started putting stuff away as he also didn’t think he could win even if the dice turned around.

It would have been nice to see it play out as I think his frustration was making him pessimistic on his chances but I did believe I would pull out a win. Just for fun I went through a little “what-if” of my own.

So at the end of last activation before the concession, his Cyclones (1), had whiffed on my Alexander (2) and my Gunwagons (3).  My retaliation would have been swift from my infantry in the building (4), their ground APC (4), and their aerial transport Lifthawk (4).

The abusive overclocked lasers from my Occupation Vets would have had a pretty high chance at removing his big Leviathan (his last main anti-air threat), while the Resistance fighters launch their deluge of RPGs at the Flame Wagons.  The remaining Flame wagons would then have been targeted by the Lifthawk and APCs.  Given average rolls, this likely would have removed 4 of the 6 trucks. If I was really lucky the last shot from my Lifthawk’s AA gun would have downed the closest Cyclone.  Highly unlikely even though the rolls weren’t difficult.  I had been shooting at that dumb chopper all game and only managed a measly one damage.

My opponent ran through this “what-if” a little bit as his next move would have been to run his Typhoons (5) in close to shoot at my Alex (2).  His “what-if” rolls were whiffs again (further solidifying his want to not play anymore).  My Gunwagons (3) could have reaction-fired at them but they wouldn’t take the penalty to do so unless he came at them instead of my Alex. They would have just gone next activation and focused on one Typhoon to bring it down, then spread out so that no more template barrages could catch them all in one attack.

I’m pretty confident that by the end of this round, it would have been clear that he wouldn’t have enough units to contest enough focal points to win the game but my dice were running pretty poor at times too so who knows. I was granted the win and so we’ll just hope for more interesting games next time when we conclude the Winter Campaign with a massive 2,000 point battle.  It will be the largest Dropzone Game I’ve played by a big margin and I’m already looking at what I should put together so I can make sure my units are all painted and accounted for.


As a bonus for winning, the host at printed out some bunker buildings for the scenario and the winners of each game got a set so I got to bring home some swag.

I’ll probably do some work on them to clean them up and paint but I’d been wanting some bunkers so this was a nice surprise and a cool bit of gaming swag.

Crunch Time

This week starts the last five weeks of the year and looking at my 6 x 6 Challenge list, things are looking pretty tight. I have five more games to get in to complete my challenge with Walking Dead dragging its heels with the least games played. Sad as I thought it would be one of the easiest to complete but I got a bit sidetracked. Since the remaining items seem pretty straight forward, I’ll be focusing a bit more energy to get Walking Dead to the table to try to finish out my Chapters series and mess around with some of the new missions in the later rule books.

After Walking Dead, I will have a few stragglers with one game left each.  Championship Formula Racing should be easy to get a game in again and I plan to do that this week.  Dropzone Commander has it’s last game already set up on the calendar as the local group completes another game in their ongoing Winter Campaign.  That leaves Batman Miniature Game.

We’ve been moving right along with our BMG sessions and so I’d like to try to hit one of the campaign scenarios in the Suicide Squad starter. That will be a bit ambitious as all of those scenarios require the Suicide Squad team, which I haven’t started painting yet (and I’d really like to play with painted models).  Probably a long shot to completing that option but what is life without lofty goals? I can always fall back on our regular 200 point game if need be.

I did figure out that I needed a better storage solution as the pink plastic tray that came in the Suicide Squad starter was pretty useless. Two pluck foam trays later and this great box is reborn as my minis holder.  And just look at all that room for expansion…


In other news, we started playing Evolution Climate from North Star Games a little bit and my friend reminded me of a goal of his to add a little more theme to the game.  The game represents the management of new species that evolve to gain the most food every round and the game includes these nondescript trays to hold your species’ stats.

We always wanted to give a little more info or theme about these species we were creating so we thought about maybe cards or different tray designs.  Then I picked up a promo set at Gen Con and thought we had the solution.

While these new custom trays are much better visually than the standard trays, other players found them difficult to determine key things like my species’ population or body size.  In addition, there are only six of them in three separate designs.  That means not enough trays to go around and the variety is limited to the three dinosaur shapes printed.

We started brainstorming and thought maybe cards that you randomly draw from a custom deck could work. These cards would have descriptive names of some animal on them. This could then help you imagine that you were creating some type of new bat or caribou or whatamaroo.  I was thinking about this a bit more and while at Michael’s, I found a nice alternative.

These little plastic creatures (on the upper left of the tray) come in assorted packs of differing shapes and are relatively inexpensive (especially if you buy them over the course of a few weeks with the store’s weekly 40% off coupon).  I think this can give the species a little bit of theme while staying out of the way of the game mechanics.  I’ll have to get this to the table and see if it works.

Batman and a Sweet Revenge

My impromptu painting session culminated in another Batman Miniature Game earlier last week. I kept the same crew as last time and my friend swapped out Comissioner Gordon for the SWAT Alpha member that I just painted up and Agent Ron.

I still had the last map set up so we decided to keep it and switch scenarios. This time we chose the Skirmish scenario which only cares about killing opponent figures. You still have objectives but the scenario doesn’t favor them any more than normal.

Per the scenario rules, we set up on opposite sides of the board. I ended up placing my easy objectives close to the right side of the board (loot and riddle objectives) and my ammo crate in the center just outside of the central lamp post.

There are some nice synergies with Joker and his henchmen if they are close enough as he can burn a few special counters and almost double his henchmen’s movement. With that done, Joker ran over and picked up some of my loot. Agent Ron went sewer diving and came up over on my side but hidden behind a building.

With Eyeball Man’s excessive movement now, he ran out to my first riddle objective and promptly failed.

Fat Cop ran back to his board edge knowing all to well what happens when Eyeball Man is too close.  I ran Panda Man out to the middle to make a play for the other objectives next round.

The round ends with Batman cautiously moving in and Alpha aggressively pushing into the center, getting just shy of the lucrative ammo crate but is within 8″ of Eyeball Man (triggering his “shooter” ability to ignore Ping! rolls). Being so close to the ammo crate, Alpha isn’t worried about running out of ammo so he pops off a round at Eyeball Man only to whiff and roll a 1.

I score one VP for Joker’s loot objective and the first round of scoring is complete.

I get to lead off the second round and decide to have Panda Man open up on Alpha. I can’t leave Alpha there as he is too deadly next to that ammo crate and a bit of a tank with a bulletproof vest. If I can get two hits off, I can take Alpha down. I end up with all three shots hitting but due to the intervening tree cover, Alpha negates two of them with his Ping! roll and comes away with some nasty wounds but still up.

Alpha responds in kind and unloads on Panda Man. He also lands all 3 shots, ignoring Ping! but I luck out and he whiffs one of the damage rolls. It still hurts and Panda Man is down to one wound remaining.

Eyeball Man then sprays five shots at Alpha but bad rolls on my part only get one wound in I need two to drop him. I do get a match on my collateral die so it knocks Alpha down. Eyeball Man then swings over to my ammo crate to reload and control that objective.

Batman swoops in only to go for one of his riddle objectives and detectives his  maxing the points. We ended up grabbing the wrong cheat sheet so didn’t award the right VPs for these objectives so Batman ends up short changed with 3 VPs instead of 4.

Joker moves in to finish off Alpha but whiffs.

Fat Cop and Agent Ron hover around the back waiting to see if they should engage or cower. Agent Ron does take the opportunity to grab his cash loot (GCPD never did pay enough).

The round ends with 6 VPs for me (Panda Man was able to score off my second riddle token) and 7 VPs for Batman.

Alpha stands back up but rolls horribly and only gets a few scratches on Eyeball Man.  Joker then goes and obliterates Alpha. With no cover to stop me and some good rolls, I finally removed that thorn.  I then decide to go for a pretty risky move.

I know Batman is going to go next and will swing over to Eyeball Man and beat him down. This always happens and with Panda almost gone, I don’t think I can afford to lose Eyeball Man without even taking a turn. So my gambit is to run Joker up to be bait for Batman’s beat down. I should survive and have a good shot at going first next round to retreat. To guarantee that Batman goes after me, I use Joker’s intimidate skill to negate Batman from using any special counters (so no Batclawing over to Eyeball Man and taking him out).

Hahaha! It worked!

Shit.

Batman doesn’t knock me out but does bring me close and now Fat Cop smells blood in the water. Lucky for me, his tubby ass fails to damage me further even though I’m prone and getting double teamed.

Eyeball Man gets to prove that the gambit was worth it. He does ok and gets in a few wounds on Fat Cop.

Agent Ron can’t let Fat Cop show him up so he comes around the corner and lands a shot in on Eyeball Man.

After this crazy round I’m back up with 11 VPs to Batman’s 8.

Unfortunately, Joker fails to recover any stun markers inbetween rounds and I lose out on the critical initiative round.  I load up everything Joker has on defense and hope it’s enough to survive.

Batman starts and tries to pummel Joker down. His rolls are pretty bad and my defense rolls are pretty good but Joker falls by the slimmest of margins with only one hit landing damage. That one hit is enough to to knock him out.  Due to a weird and dumb rules interaction, Joker doesn’t get removed when Batman tries to arrest him so we move on (we’ll later decide that the RAW doesn’t make sense and will rule that Survivor doesn’t stop Arrest).

Time for Stan the Man to save the day. If I take out Fat Cop, not only does continue my routine slaying of the poor slob, but there won’t be anyone to arrest Joker and there might still be a chance for Joker wake up and slither into the sewer grate nearby.

Eyeball Man shoots and scores 4 hits on Fat Cop. There is cover but averages should see him negate only half of the hits and even if I whiff the damage rolls, it’ll still be lights out for Fat Cop.  Instead, Stan proves incompetent and my friend negates ALL my hits with an epic Ping! roll. Stupid lamppost!

Fat Cop can’t believe his own luck and happily slams the cuffs on the Joker (showing Batman how to get it done) for the arrest of a lifetime.

The next round just see things completely fall apart. Agent Ron drops his loot to run in and beat down Eyeball Man with a quick follow up arrest.

Batman easily runs down Panda Man.

Whoops his ass and arrests him too.

The game ends with a crushingly complete rout of my crew.  Final score:

Joker crew: 14 VPs

Brave and the Bold: 27 VPs

Pretty interesting game all around. The Ping! rolls destroyed me and really showcased how I need to take more care in my positioning. My gambit ended up failing but it was interesting to try out. Even though we likely messed up the ruling when Batman tried to arrest Joker, it ended up making for the better story with Fat Cop finally coming out on top, over the Joker no less. I learned recently that there is a Knight Models tournament promo card floating around that is the promotion of Fat Cop to Sgt. Winslow. That seems all too fitting for the events of this game so I honor of his epic victory, I will now respectfully refer to him as Winslow, or sergeant Winslow depending on which card is in play.

Me, Farina, and the Fittipaldi Twins

I had some time this weekend and was in the mood for racin’ so I threw down a solo game of Championship Formula Racing.  I had to dust off the rules since I hadn’t played it since this summer but after about an hour of setup and reviewing the Historical Driver AI rules, I was ready to go.

This race went a little long so I’ll catch you after the jump.

Read More

Dropzone Commander Winter Campaign, Game 2

This weekend we had our second Dropzone Commander game in our three game campaign cycle.  This time we were up to 1,250 points and were pushed beyond the smaller Skirmish army build options and into the full Clash-sized rules.

We also decided to run a new scenario from the latest book, Reconquest: Phase 2: Battle for the Olympus Shipyards – Hull Breach.  This new scenario used a bucket list of new environmental rules that did everything from increasing movement and the power to all weapon systems to having orbital debris and unstable environment effect randomly occurring.  With that in mind, I built a sort of old-school list:

I’ve gone back to the M3 Alex as a commander (cheaper in points and easier to move around with the new firing rules after getting dropped off from a transport) and with the speed and weapon upgrades, I spammed a bunch of Freeriders to harken back to their pre-nerfed glory.  I also jumped back to a bunch of Cyclone helicopters because the scenario boosted Barrage, which suited them better.  A Barrel Bomber and two sets of the ever annoying Gun Wagons rounded out the group.

As I try to do with all of these games, I try to make a list that forces me to paint up my backlog of units so this time I needed to complete the helicopter wings, allowing me to swap out the unit type (via the magic of magnets).

Running this many Freerider biker squads meant I needed to paint up a bunch of new stands.  Likely overkill as I don’t see myself running eight of these ever again but good to have them done and painted.

Last, I needed to get another set of Gun Wagons up to snuff.

This round is a little wacky.  My friend is pretty annoyed at these lame-ass trucks having better anti-air guns than most of his advanced weaponry. Add to it that they are pretty fast at 6″, take 2 damage points to kill, and have armor high enough that small weapons fire does work and you get a lot “wtf” throwing around.  To add insult to injury, I decided to put two of them in bright “we don’t belong on the battlefield” colors.  I think it makes them look like broke-down fruit stand trucks, which maybe makes for even more gnashing of teeth with they take down unsuspecting aircraft.

That other odd duck is a little pet project of mine that got roped into service. The poor guy is so confused, being a kit bash of two of the truck models and sporting the wrong weapon type, this is a flame weapon, not an anti-air.  The only thing he really has going for him is a nice shout out to another favorite famous truck of mine.

roll out!

Ok, enough about him.  We’ll revisit him later.

It was another great game day at Funtastic Games and I drew our other PHR player as my opponent.  This was great as I really don’t know much about this faction and it was a good learning experience.

I totally forgot I even had a camera until about halfway through the game but that was just a testament to how involved this one was.  With all the environmental rules happening and the learning curve of figuring out what all those slightly different PHR walkers do, pictures were the last thing on my mind.

To start things off, we had massive debris chunks rain down on us over the first three rounds.  Aside from wiping a particularly annoying AA walker in round three, all the debris ended up doing to smashing into buildings.

All this orbital debris funness did force a lot of use out of my random direction spinner I made for the last session.

The spinner proved easy to use and effective. I think I’ll finish it out by painting it up as well.

My opponent made great use of these open firing lanes with his AA walkers (at the top of the image on the road) and it started choking up my flight lanes so that I either had to go way out of my way to avoid them or risk some reaction-fire and some damage.  Later on, I risked it and ended up losing things badly most of the time.

In those first three rounds, my bikers crashed into the closest building and picked up an objective right away and made it out of the building only to be the target of a fast-moving interceptor jet (the same model as what is on the spinner).  Lucky for me my fruit truck AAs were wide awake and ended up taking it down early in its flightpath before it could take out the lone biker.

My ignorance of PHR really came to a head when I threw stands of infantry into the above building only two see two walkers dropdown.  “What are those?” I asked casually.  “Flame walkers” my opponent replied. Oh. Fun. Basically the bane of infantry squatting in buildings.  I thought it should be ok, I used a lot of flame weapons on one of Beserker transports in the last couple of games and it was decent but ultimately weak. Apparently my faction’s flame capability is pretty weak as these PHR guys know what is up.  Rocking 16 dice at my dudes, it could have gone much worse but the roll was weak and ate up only 8 of my 20 guys.  With only needing 3+ to damage my guys, I got pretty lucky.  My opponent followed up by dropping in a squad of Immortals.  These are the stock troops for PHR so I still outnumbered him.

Those Immortals aren’t messing around though. Even down 10 to my 12 guys, they still through more dice than me and had better armor.  They ended up knocking my 12 guys down to one lonely dude. Needless to say, he failed morale and fled the building.  Good thing too because after I saw that, I made an attack run with my Barrel Bomber to go wipe out that building before those Immortals could find the objective.  My opponent already skunked me in another building objective by finding it on the first try and playing a card to get his guys out of close combat to get the objective out of the building and off the map.

By the end of round three, we were tied at 2 VP each.  My Barrel Bomber obliterated the Immortals in the building that wiped out most of my standard infantry and earlier work wiped out the PHR Valkyries.  I had a bunch of my other bikers in the last objective building so I had a good amount of confidence this game would turn out alright.  His squads seemed unable to do much damage to buildings so it was just a matter of finding that objective to seal the deal.

We went back and forth a bit trading units but I was able to overpower the PHR in raw damage so that by the end of it, there weren’t many of his units left.  I went through 4 rounds of searching with two squads in that last building and they never found it.  I suspect it was bad intel and it was never there so the game wrapped with 2 VP for each of us.

When we counted the tiebreaker (kill points), I ended up ahead 936 points to 431 points. Another Resistance victory!

The environmental rules were interesting but the random destruction didn’t end up doing much and really just slowed the game down.  I think I liked the rules that altered the stat lines of the units as that meant you could be a little more creative in list building.  I’m still not a big fan of the Resistance command card deck as I never get anything that really makes a big difference.  I watched as the PHR did these cool things like take over some of my weapon systems and shoot my own guys or force my trucks to false start, etc.  The coolest things I did was make the wrong infantry dodge close combat better and regain a few damage points on my transport.  All the other useful cards are in the other faction decks.  I’ve been playing the “Feral” side but for the next game, I’m going to mix it up and play with the Allied side.

Page 1 of 6

Powered by WordPress & Theme by Anders Norén