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Author Topic: Battle Report - King of the Hill  (Read 1969 times)

hive_angel

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Battle Report - King of the Hill
« on: 27 August 2014, 11:21:16 »
This is a repost of my blog so please enjoy.

Last Friday the new player added to my current ATOW campaign was out for a World of Warcraft event, so Mark and I decided to play some regular battletech. First I thought to have a general battlemech brawl with some vehicles on the side, but I eventually changed to an objective driven scenario since general fights tend to bore me.



King of the Hill


Maps

The game scenario ended up being something I cooked up in my mind, a strange variation of King of the Hill with different objectives. For maps I used two copies of the map from Hex Pack: Lakes and Rivers. I set the maps with the River Valley side face up connecting the long sides with the largest mountain facing each other. Each map's large mountain would serve as the home player's main hill and the smaller mountain would serve as the home player's alternate hill. I originally thought to use the Large Mountain maps, but I feared LRMs might be wasted, then again the River Valley maps posed challenges as well. I think I seem to like these maps a lot for some reason.


Scoring

We both agreed any battlemech could score a number of points equal to their respective weight class on the main hill. The main hill scoring area was limited to the peak, the north and south hex of the peak and the front hexes facing the opposite main hill. The main hill peak would award an additional point. The small hill scoring area was limited to the peak. The small hill peak would score one point regardless of weight class. The small hill peak would score according to weight class for an opposing battlemech. Regardless of which hill a battlemech had to stay on a hill a full turn to score.


Forces

Having two copies of the Introductory Boxed Set I limited battlemechs to those sets using only the standard variants to make things easier. I picked out twelve battlemechs per side selecting battlemechs I rarely or have never used and both players received the same battlemechs. This was a general experiment to see how certain battlemechs function and a way for Mark to see some battlemechs before they make an appearance in the ATOW campaign. Plus this is another way to examine Mark's ability to adjust tactics for the game, which I then use in turn to challenge his character in the ATOW campaign.


The company of battlemechs

COM-2D Commando
JR7-D Jenner
VND-1R Vindicator
ENF-4R Enforcer
DV-6M Dervish
DRG-1N Dragon
CPLT-C1 Catapult
GHR-5H Grasshopper
ZEU-6S Zeus
CP-10-Z Cyclops
BNC-3E Banshee
AS7-D Atlas


Deployment

Both players were free to deploy their battlemechs as they wish by simply moving each battlemech unto their home map from their home map edge on the first turn.


Turn 1

I deployed on the West map and Mark deployed on the East map. I deployed with the intention of using the water channels and the sides of the main hill to help push my assault mechs through and generally use them as hill attackers and defenders. I sent a small force to take the small hill and faster small force to take the main hill. Mark eventually told me his initial deployment ideas was a murder pile to gain as many battlemechs up top the main hill as fast as possible. To his admitting this plan broke apart quickly.



Turn 2

Mostly movement and no fire lances outside of blind luck shots. However funny enough Mark laughed as my Atlas crashed to the ground while crossing the river. "They'll never think of this!" I then laughed as his Banshee did the same thing. I took the lead by jumping my Catapult to my small hill for an early point grab. Mark was able to jump two mechs into scoring position on his main hill first which caused me to do the same. I also showed Mark I was going for his small hill by moving four mechs directly towards it. I believe Mark had his Catapult in position to provide LRM support and was not fully aware of my intentions to take his small hill.



Turn 3

I believe Mark's initial murder pile idea had failed at this point as my Catapult was in position to score on the small hill along with a couple of mediums on my main hill. I advanced my Dragon into Mark's territory acting as the lead for a lance of additional mechs following. Mark responded to my Catapult by sending a much larger force of mechs in the hill's direction along with an almost equal force to his own small hill. Mark shifted his main hill mechs loosing his initial possible point grabs. His decision was for the better as he would shift in larger mechs to core. One thing I will note for the Catapult obtaining just one point it took a large amount of damage by basically being  a fire magnet.



Turn 4

At this point all mechs had moved into firing range. All the mechs atop the main hills continued to hammer each other with Mark's forces succeeding in knocking my Dervish to the ground.

Near my small hill I jumped my Catapult to counter Mark's Grasshopper, but the plan did not work well at all and I nearly lost the Catapult to an ammo explosion. Even though I had two assault mechs coming to the Catapult's aid, I was vastly being over run. I thought to use the Banshee as a close range brawler, but opted to utilize its longer range weapon systems. Both the Banshee and the Zeus were ill equipped for this job as Mark was overrunning me with superior fast short range firepower.

Although outnumbered and outclassed, Mark was putting up a heck of a fight in order to not loose his hill. My Dragon took way too much damage and was nearly lost to an ammo explosion twice. Mark blew the left arm completely off, damaged the rear medium laser and a heat sink missing the LRM ammo completely. Mark's Zeus was acting as an anchor and morale booster as the heat sinks in the legs kept it very cool.



Turn 5

One thing had to happen this turn, ammo dumping on multiple mechs. My Catapult jumped to safety in the woods and dump any remaining LRM ammo, next my Dragon would lie prone for safety and dump any remaining LRM ammo, and my Dervish would stand tall and dump the unused SRM ammo.

On the main hills, Mark's Atlas arrived to take the peak while the Dervish jumped below to support his retreating forces. Mark's Atlas would soon tip the scale of point accumulations in his favor and even more so if my Dervish was taken out. I was able to put out more damage which was helping a bit. Since the Dervish jumped away I concentrated all firepower on Mark's Dragon and knocked it to the ground.

Since my Catapult had left the small hill, the Zeus and the Banshee moved back into the water. I had lost the small hill and abandoned trying to retake it. More importantly, I needed to protect my main hill from invasion.

In response to me loosing my small hill I forced Mark's forces into retreat from his small hill and took it. Most of Mark's mechs couldn't fight toe to toe with my Cyclops and my Atlas within a turns movement was adding to the pressure. Mark's forces put a valiant effort into knocking my Grasshopper on its face.


 
A Chex Mix dropship prepares for departure.
 
Turn 6

Dumping ammo helped keep my Catapult and Dragon in the game a bit longer and I am amazed the Dervish was still standing.

Atop the main hills nothing significant happened. Mark was outright ignoring my other mechs and concentrating on my Dervish as I was to his Dragon. Many components were breaking on the Dervish.

My left flank was collapsing fast around my small hill so I made some force adjustments. I jumped the Catapult to the main hill in response to Mark's Catapult doing the same although his Catapult was in scoring postilion. The Zeus climbed the main hill while the Banshee slowly made its way to the main hill. Mark pushed his Cyclops to the banshee and must have had an agenda to either damage it severely or destroy it entirely. The Banshee absorbed a great amount of damage buying serious time for the Zeus to escape unscathed. Sadly the Banshee fell as its gyro was destroyed, but not before its PPC blew the head clean off of the Cyclops. Talk about a critical influenced luck and a trade kill. When the Banshee fell, my left side had effectively collapsed.

Around Mark's small hill his forces were scattered forces and retreating to higher ground leaving only the healthy light units to stop the onslaught of approaching assault mechs. The Catapult has jumped away to the main hill for a more valuable scoring position. The Zeus was in full retreat as its center torso armor had been opened up from a devastating AC/20 hit from my Cyclops. Mark put a lot of focus on my Atlas in hopes to slow it down.



A Record Sheet dropship arrives on map.
 
Turn 7

I forgot to take a picture Du-oh!

Atop the main hills, Mark had succeeded in tipping the point scoring in his favor. I would be able to tip the scale back in my favor the next turn with the inclusion of the Catapult and the Zues. I could afford to lose the Dervish and still be ahead or lose the Catapult and be tied for points scores. Miraculously the Dervish survived another turn. I believe the Dervish and the Dragon may have both fallen down though.

Over by my small hill, my left flank was completely collapsed and the Catapult was easy pickings and the prime target for destruction. Having dumped the ammo previously gave the mech a lot of additional life span as it was on horrible shape.

Over by Mark's small hill his forces were in full retreat unable to hold the line or push back my forces. He choose to sacrifice his Jenner to hold my Atlas and take heat off of his Zeus. The Atlas honored the sacrificed and pummeled the pilot to oblivion with an AC/20 hit to the head. Mark never laughed so hard before, he was very pleased.


End Game

We thought to capture the game and finish it later, but Mark considered his options and conceded. To be sure of his decision we both considered what we would do the very next turn. I explained I would try to put his Dragon down for good atop the main hill denying him a point scorer and put the Zeus out of commission removing another of his assault mechs and a possible point scorer. Mark believed his options were to remove my Dervish and or my Catapult possibly removing two point scorers. By the end of the last turn I had a higher point lead which would take a few turns to even, but that far ahead is difficult to predict.

It was a great game.


Points Scored

Key

H/B/C/P(P)

H = Hill: Home or Enemy, Main or Small
B = Battletmech
C = Class: Light, Medium, Heavy, Assult
P = Point(s) Scored (Peak Point)

T3

H
HS/Catapult/H/1
HM/Dervish/M/2(1)
---------------------

Turn Total = 4

T4

H
HM/Enforcer/M/2
HM/Vidicator/M/2
HM/Dervish/M/2(1)
---------------------

Turn Total = 7

M
HM/Dragon/H/3
HM/Dervish/M/2(1)
---------------------

Turn Total = 6

T5

H
HM/Enforcer/M/2
HM/Vidicator/M/2
HM/Dervish/M/2(1)
---------------------

Turn Total = 7

M
HM/Dragon/H/3
-----------------

Turn Total = 3

T6

H
HM/Enforcer/M/2
HM/Vidicator/M/2
HM/Dervish/M/2(1)
ES/Grasshopper/H/3
---------------------

Turn Total = 10

M
HM/Dragon/H/3
HM/Atlas/A/4(1)
ES/Grasshopper/H/3
---------------------

Turn Total = 11

T7

H
HM/Enforcer/M/2
HM/Vidicator/M/2
HM/Dervish/M/2(1)
ES/Grasshopper/H/3
---------------------

Turn Total = 10

M
HM/Dragon/H/3
HM/Catapult/H/3
HM/Atlas/A/4(1)
ES/Grasshopper/H/3
---------------------

Turn Total = 14

H

Game Total = 38

M

Game Total = 34

If the next turn happened it might have gone something like this as more mechs would have been in position to score.

T8 (Prediction)

H
HM/Enforcer/M/2
HM/Vidicator/M/2
HM/Dervish/M/2(1) *
HM/Catapult/H/3 *
HM/Zeus/A/4
ES/Grasshopper/H/3
---------------------

Turn Total = 17

M
HM/Dragon/H/3 *
HM/Catapult/H/3
HM/Atlas/A/4(1)
ES/Grasshopper/H/3
---------------------

Turn Total = 14

I don't remember Mark adding more to his main hill on the last turn such as the Dervish, he was too busy trying to slow my Atlas from invading his hill. If things had gone smooth and no mechs were lost I would still have a lead in points that turn. If I lost the Dervish I would stil have a lead, if I lost the Catapult the points would be tied. More to it the three mechs marked by * were all close to being destroyed in a turn or two so with those mechs destroyed the points would have been tied.

It felt that about half of each player'scompany of mechs were either destroyed, critically damaged, trashed or damaged and the other half were in working condition.


Overview

Now for an overview of each battlemech's performace. Mostly just opinions.

COM-2D Commando
Both of us used our commandos as persuit mechs following the original purpose I believe the mech is designed for. Mark has little respect for light mechs, but I think he liked the firepower the Commando can put out.

JR7-D Jenner
Both of us used our Jenners as harassing units against eachother's heavy mechs. Their jump movement kept them safe during the game. Mark tossing his as a sacrifice to hold an Atlas for a turn in classical to his hatred for light mechs.

VND-1R Vindicator
Origanlly as a hill attack mech, I used mine as a sniper atop the main hill while Mark used his as a persuit mech.

ENF-4R Enforcer
I used mine as a sniper atop the main hill while Mark used his as a hill defense mech.

DV-6M Dervish
Both of use used them as point scorers and Mark switched his to hill defense. This mech has way too much ammo for comfort, the dual SRM ammo bins could be useful down the line, but not much armor protects them.

DRG-1N Dragon
I used mine as a hill attacker while Mark used his as a point scorer/sniper. Eventually my Dragon became nothing but a glorifed AC/5 glass cannon. This is another mech with way too much ammo. I have yet to gain any liking for Dragons myself and Mark could say much less fot them.

CPLT-C1 Catapult
Both of us used our Catapults as a point scorer and hill defense. The Catapult might have served better purpose atop the main hill raining LRMs around the battlefield. Sitting atop a hill would have negated the usefulness of its jump sets and battery of medium lasers.

GHR-5H Grasshopper
We both used our Grasshoppers as hill attackers and point scorers. I think the idea of base attacking was obvious, their jump jet capability made them both accessible to score points as well.

ZEU-6S Zeus
A Zeus loves water, plain and simple. Both of us used our Zeuses for hill defense. I found the zeus is far better at range due to the AC/5 and LRM15 minimum ranges. The Zeus in general seems like a jack of all ranges, but mastering in no single range. I think the Zeus might have been far better suited to sit on the main hill and score as it had the movement to get up there in a decent amount of time.

CP-10-Z Cyclops
Both of us used our Cyclopses for base attacking. The Cyclops not having a protective HQ job was perfect to run right to the enemy lines and wreak as much havoc as possible. The Cyclops was really a gamble and may have been better to not have been included, but for the sake of never beeing used I included it.

BNC-3E Banshee
I used my Banshee for hill defense while MArk used his Banshee for hill attacking.  Like the Zeus the Banshee felt like a mixed bag range wise and severly limited in weapon options. It might have been better to use it as some say as a huge mech brawler with one hell of a kick.

AS7-D Atlas
I used my Atlas for hill attacking while Mark used his Atlas for point scoring. I figured the Atlas would waste most of its deadly short range firepower atop the main hill so I opted to attack Mark's small hill. The decision to attack Mark's small hill proved to be the superior decision for two reasons; one it helped me overun and take the small hill, two it helpded. Mark using the Atlas as a point scorer sort of limited the overall firepower capability, but the amount of points it could score was just as valuable.


I hope you enjoyed this battle report. I feel this scenario might be something I can refine possibly if given enough opponents who think its an interesting idea.
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Dragon Cat

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Re: Battle Report - King of the Hill
« Reply #1 on: 27 August 2014, 11:50:13 »
Sounded like a fun game