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Author Topic: AAR - Word of Blake vs Ryukin-Ni, Narre Warren, Australia  (Read 2165 times)


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Three weeks ago I was invited to join a bunch of new BattleTech players in Narre Warren for what must be my first actual game of BattleTech in two years - and my first in Australia for five years.

It turned out to be a horrible weather night - dark, wind & rain a-plenty - which limited turnout a little, but I met B and A (don't know if they have forum names yet) at B's house, in his game room/garage. They're members of a larger group who left W40K after 8th Edition came out, and have found BattleTech more to their liking - much less ambiguity, a crunchy system with room for drama, and hex terrain.

We'd arranged to play a game with 8000BV on each side. I'd brought a range of options - 3025 Capellan Rangers, 3050 Smoke Jaguars, 3055 Ryuken-Ni  - so I wouldn't overwhelm the 'neophytes'. Well let me assure you - just because they were new to BT didn't mean they were unsophisticated. A was working on his minis, and B brought out his integrated C3I force, representing a damned good WoB force. So I went with the Ryuken-Ni, and just as well!

(Note - we'd both failed to allow for the BV boost for C3, but as we both had it, it was pretty well equal forces.)

Representing the Dragon, I was fielding a C3 lance of Avatar OC, Charger C, Orion 1-MC and Catapult K5, with a Helios C out there - it had the slave, but I had no slots.

Facing me was an IS Battle Cobra C-20D, Deva OD (proxied by my Capellan Dragoons Marauder), Marauder 9W (Proxied by a Marauder IIC), Ostscout 10CS (proxied by a Commando), and Fafnir 5WB (proxied by an Awesome) - yup, the four Plasma Rifle version!

So the first round was more or less entering the 2x2 map battle area. We both split our forces into two groups - I had the Avatar, Orion, and Catapult moving up the right side, facing his Fafnir, Marauder, and Ostscout. On the left flank my Helios and Charger were facing his Deva and Battle Cobra. Effective use of terrain and woods meant no effective shots.

Second turn, more seeking advantage.

Third turn, I lost initiative. We began to space ourselves out ... when B's Ostscout used it's 10 jump to land next to my Orion. Well, let me tell you this was my first C3 battle, and I wasn't quite ready for this. Also, my side lacked the sort of pulse gear I should have taken if I'd been a better player (I picked the minis I wanted to use, not the most combat effective units ;) ) His Fafnir and Marauder were needing 7s and 8s to hit, and did concentrated on the Avatar, seeking to take my C3M out early. A spread of hits (and heat) across my arms & torsos wasn't too bad. My return fire concentrated on the leaping nuisance, but at 11s to 13s to hit, achieved little.

And then his Ostscout decided to kick the Orion.

And failed.

And fell.

Fourth turn, I lost initiative again. So I pushed my point man - the Orion - forward. You'll note I didn't have any speedsters, really, but I figured the best place for the Orion was at the front, with all its MRMs. The Avatar hung back at about 16 hexes, and the Catapult jumped to get a good firing position on a hill. His Fafnir  & Marauder camped in woods. On the left flank, our respective units kept hills largely in the way. Oh, the Ostscout? Ran into the middle of the board. Which, for reasons I'll explain, turned out to be the safest thing for it to do.

And then the firing began.

Like I said, this was my first game using a C3 network. So here are all these heavies & assaults, and we're rolling 3s and 4s to hit. Except for my MRMs, which rolled 4s and 5s. It was like having a chainsaw fight in a phone booth! B concentrated on the Orion, and me on the Fafnir. He was less than lucky - only 1 of three plasma rifles hit. Between all his units, most of the Orion's armour, and most of his right leg, vaporised. Luckily, I got a hip critical, which meant I could ignore the other leg crits ;D

In return, I concentrated on the Fafnir. Which absorbed salvo after salvo of MRMs, LRMs, and the odd PPC shot, and just said "Yum!". Heat went up across the board, a little, all piloting rolls were made.

Turn 5 - it was getting late, and I had an early start. So we just went alpha-mad. Stand and deliver!

The hits were epic. The Orion vapourised, and the Fafnir got blown off its feet.

So many thanks to B and A for a good game, and a great time!

Things I learned:

- Don't mistake "new to game" as being easy ;)
- C3 makes MRMs shine (I'd suspected this, but now proven)
- The Orion just absorbed so much damage.
- The Fafnir's an absolute beast; I was saved early by unlucky to-hit rolls.
- The Catapult K5 shines! Mobile, and came out without a scratch

Tactically, my lack of knous and B's newness did show. Neither of us maneuvered particularly excitingly, but we were both happy to close & salvo, so no-one had a bad time. We both failed to use our flankers aggressively - his Battle Cobra's light PPCs weren't really great fire support, and most of the Deva's weapons couldn't be used. My Charger and Helios should have taken them on, and that might have let my Orion survive another round. Maybe. With luck of the dice gods.

Most importantly, we had a great time, I shared a little BT history (took along a 3rd Ed box with unpainted minis), and the cause of BT in Australia moved forward perceptibly.

My schedule hasn't allowed a rematch, but I can see an opportunity coming up. Going to see if I can talk them into a Clan vs Clan battle, help us get things moving a little more, so I can learn some more from them!

So many thanks to the Narre Warren group!


* No, FASA wasn't big on errata - ColBosch
* The Housebook series is from the 80's and is the foundation of Btech, the 80's heart wrapped in heavy metal that beats to this day - Sigma
* To sum it up: FASAnomics: By Cthulhu, for Cthulhu - Moonsword
* Because Battletech is a conspiracy by Habsburg & Bourbon pretenders - MadCapellan
* The Hellbringer is cool, either way. It's not cool because it's bad, it's cool because it's bad with balls - Nightsky
* It was a glorious time for people who felt that we didn't have enough Marauder variants - HABeas2, re "Empires Aflame"


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Re: AAR - Word of Blake vs Ryukin-Ni, Narre Warren, Australia
« Reply #1 on: 21 June 2019, 02:57:39 »
Excellent AAR, thanks Worktroll!  :thumbsup: